The Best "Fakeout Takeout" Orange Chicken

I have tried several orange chicken recipes, and been quite disappointed.  The sauce is too tart and tangy, or it's gritty and runny.  It just never compared to what I was used to when I ordered takeout.

I decided to give this recipe a try.  It didn't have any hard-to-find ingredients, and it seemed like it might be simple enough to taste good.  I was right!  We will definitely be making this again!  I even had leftover sauce, that I think would be yummy with sauteed chicken in some carrots, bell peppers, pineapple chunks, and water chestnuts--like an orange chicken stir fry!  Maybe some night for a date night-in, I'll serve it up in some take-out boxes.  Easy clean up and fun to eat on the floor watching a movie :)

Orange Chicken

3-4 boneless chicken breasts, cut into chicken tender size
3 1/2 cups cornflakes, gently crushed
1 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 egg whites
2 tsp. water
2 tsp. soy sauce

2 cups orange juice
2 T. cornstarch
2/3 cup white sugar
2/3 cup brown sugar
6 Tb. butter

Line a cookie sheet with foil.  Place in oven.  Heat oven to 450 degrees.

In pie pan, combine cornflakes, ginger, and pepper.  Mix well.

In small bowl, beat egg whites, soy sauce and water until frothy.

Dip chicken in egg white mixture and roll in cornflakes.  Place on hot cookie sheet and bake for 15-20 min.

To make sauce, combine ingredients in small sauce pan.  Bring to a boil.  Stir until sauce clears up (about 10 minutes or so).

Serve chicken on rice topped with orange sauce.


Leftover Candy Corns...

It's not a problem I normally have, to have a slew of leftover candy corns.  But if your stash isn't dwindling, as quickly as mine did, I thought some of these ideas were adorable ways to use them up, that aren't all "Halloween-y".

These candy corn penguin cup cakes are from Naomi's instagram (of the fun blog, Love Taza).  From what I can tell, they are oreos, candy corn, and mini chocolate chips.  They look easy and fun, for any time of year!

These are adorable little pretzel turkeys, that look simple and easy!  They would be a fun place setting for the kid's table at Thanksgiving!  For some more "turkey" inspiration using candy corns, I can't get over how cute these nutter butter turkeys are, or try out variations of the Reese's peanut butter cup turkey, here or here!

And if your candy corns are stale, or you are all sugared-out, you and your kids can make a sweet little card, inspired by this handprint turkey, or this Thanksgiving card.

Have fun using up that leftover candy corn!  Now I wish I had some left...I will have to plan better for next year!


Thanksgiving Tradition

We started a new thanksgiving tradition this year...
...a leaf garland in our kitchen, that we write our thankful thoughts on each evening.

It is a simple enough tradition, and not too late to start, if this sounds like something you and your family might enjoy!  I did use my silhouette machine to cut the leaves out, but you could go to a local scrapbook store and use the die cut machine, cut out your own simple leaf shape (have the kids help!), or I'm sure you can find pre-packaged leaves to use.

I like that it helps us narrow in on the true meaning of the holidays, and gives our kitchen some autumn colors.  Have you ever wondered why most of us are all crazy-excited about the holidays?  I honestly think it's all the little traditions that are embedded in this time of year.  Some of the traditions, large groups of people have in common, while other traditions are super specific to our own individual families.  That's why I am so excited to continue the ones that I love, and begin new ones for my own little family.  I also love, that it is never too late to start.  In a few years, I can continue adding traditions that seem to fit my family's wants and needs!

A similar concept to the leaf garland, is writing gratitude thoughts on leaves for a tree, or on feathers for a turkey.  I also really liked this Thanksgiving garland with meaningful words, it would be beautiful to have strewn across your tablescape or draped in the dining area during your Thanksgiving dinner. Or this amazing idea to write on the tablecloth with permanent markers every year, and able to reflect on blessings present and past.

What are your autumn and Thanksgiving traditions?  Do you have a special "gratitude" tradition, a dish you love to make, or a special activity?  Do you eat a special appetizer every year before your turkey feast or participate in a run or walk prior to the meal?  I want to hear!