Thursday, July 8, 2010

Chicken Coops...

We live in chicken country. Seriously.
Northwest Arkansas is home too:
Tyson Foods, "the world’s largest processor and marketer of chicken, beef and pork, the second-largest food production company in the Fortune 500 and a member of the S&P 500." (

Simmons Foods, "one of the country's top ten privately held poultry processors." (

and Cobb-Vantress, "...the world's oldest poultry breeding company. Beginning in 1916 in Massachusetts, USA, Cobb has developed into the global leader in broiler breeding." (

Actually, Simmons and Cobb are headquartered in Siloam Springs, where we live. And rumor has it that our current "temporary housing" was formerly owned by Cobb and used for temporary housing or entertaining - the reason I refer to it as "the chicken coop". Not only is it small, but all of the fabulous things pictured are decoration. A ceramic chicken, weather vane, tailor-made seat cushions, and the spice rack (and coordinating towel). I didn't include pictures of the Cobb core values or the chicken lamp (that we don't use) - but those are definite bonuses as well!

I also like the term "chicken coop"'s a bit lacking in size (and storage). Okay, okay - I can't complain too much - it is cheap, furnished, temporary housing that we could rent month to's tiny. Especially the circular stairway that goes upstairs. I'm hoping baby doesn't get too big before we move out...otherwise I will have to squeeze to fit. Needless to say, we are VERY excited to move into our new house in mid-August.

Back to the kitchen...and the challenge it has created! It's "furnished" - but for anyone that likes to cook, 1 skillet, and a limited supply of utensils doesn't suffice. When I moved permanently I did bring some more kitchen stuff (mixer, cookie sheet, bigger skillet, measuring cup, spatula, blender, and we found a mixing bowl and baking dish at goodwill) - so we had a few more options. It's still quite a challenge. For example, I have this GORGEOUS zucchini from someone at Matt's office, but I had to borrow a loaf pan to even make bread. If I make something in the casserole dish, well, it's out of commission until you finish it. However, I actually haven't missed having a microwave as much as I thought I would. And the lack of microwave has forced me to plan ahead.

Here is a look at some of the recipes that have worked for me (and we are TOTALLY sacrificing the healthy side either):

Zucchini, Corn, and Basil Fusilli with Bacon
(I used chicken instead, and it's DELICIOUS!)">

Pasta Salad with Grilled Summer Vegetables and Fresh Mozzarella
(I used shredded mozzarella, and left out the spinach because I didn't have any.)

Roasted Vegetable and Black Bean Quesadillas">

Italian Bread Pizza
(day old italian bread from the bakery with pizza toppings)

Zucchini Bars with Browned Butter Frosting">

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