Everyone must know this experience: the eyes are coming out on the potatoes and the baby carrots are getting a little damp looking. It's time to dump a bunch of stuff together into a pot before the food turns into compost in the refrigerator. Usually I dump it all in a pot and call it a Make Do Stew. But I really wasn't in the mood for a stew, so this is what I came up with.
If you try this on your own and tweak it in your own uniquely creative fashion, please let me know. It smells heavenly right now as it bakes. Garlic bread anyone?
Baked Chicken Leg Make Do
3 potatoes sliced thinly
1 handful of baby carrots (or 2 medium) sliced thinly
1 onion sliced thinly
3 cups wine and cider rinsed ricotta*
1 can undrained diced tomatoes
1 dozen chicken legs (or 4 chicken leg quarters)
1 cup Italian dressing
1 cup wine (your choice--I used a blush but reds and whites each add their
own lovely notes)
1 TBS thyme
1 TBS Italian seasoning
1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning (a crab/seafood seasoning mix will work adequately
as a sub)
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat a 9 x 13 pan with olive oil or cooking spray to prevent sticking. Layer the potato, carrot, and onion slices on the bottom. Spread the cheese evenly on top of the vegetables. Spread contents of the can of tomatoes on top of the cheese. Top with chicken legs. Pour the wine over the chicken followed by the Italian dressing. Sprinkle chicken legs with the spices, salt and pepper. Bake uncovered for 45 min or until the juices from a chicken leg run clear when poked with a fork. Better yet, check it with the meat thermometer.
Here is the final, product. This Make Do recipe is a keeper!
*Here's a reminder for how to make a wine and cider based ricotta.
1/4 to 1/2 cup red or white wine
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
Line a colander with cheese cloth and dump in a ricotta cheese (store bought or homemade). Pour the vinegar over the cheese and stir. Pour in the wine and stir. Tie the four corners of the cheese cloth together. Tie a string around the knot and hang to dry (You can hang it from the faucet to drain into a sink or from a cabinet door handle over a bowl). Drain for 5 to 10 minutes.