Monday, June 29, 2015

Artichoke Chicken

Easy, one skillet dinner that's loaded with tomatoes and artichokes! A one bowl meal for my low-carb friends but also delicious over pasta or rice. Budget and weeknight friendly!

If you are a "briny" fan, you'll love this dish. Capers, artichokes, green olives = I'm a fan. Artichokes, especially, are delicious alongside tomato and chicken. For this dish. you just quickly brown thin chicken breasts in a large skillet, then saute your tomatoes and artichokes, before simmering it all together for 15 minutes.

Psst - do all your draining, chopping, and zesting while the chicken cooks and you can have this on the table - start to finish - in 30 minutes or less!

Artichoke Chicken
2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (15 oz.) can petite diced tomatoes
1 (15 oz.) can quartered artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp lemon zest
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
salt and pepper

Place the chicken breasts on a cutting board and cover with a large sheet of plastic wrap. Use a mallet or rolling pin to pound the chicken out to an even, ½ inch thickness. Cut the chicken breasts into pieces about the size of a deck of cards. Lightly salt and pepper both sides of each piece and set aside.

Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the chicken pieces and cook until golden brown on each side (about 5 min. per side). Be careful to not overcrowd the pan (cook them in batches if needed). Once browned on both sides, remove chicken to plate.

Add the second tablespoon of olive oil and the minced garlic. Cook the garlic for 30 seconds, or until soft and fragrant. Add the chopped artichoke hearts, diced tomatoes (with juices), dried basil, lemon zest, and about ⅛ tsp of salt. Stir to combine.

Return the browned chicken to the skillet and nestle it down into the tomatoes and artichoke hearts. Allow the skillet to come up to a simmer, then let the chicken simmer in the skillet for 15 minutes, flipping it once half way through.

Sprinkle the chopped parsley over top then serve over rice or pasta.

Source: slightly adapted from Budget Bytes

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Meatball and Ziti Bake

A delicious classic! This tasty pasta is loaded with meatballs and weeknight easy!

I love pasta - particularly because most pasta dishes are easily a one pot meal! I'm all about easy on a busy weeknight. This particular pasta is not loaded with cream, cheese, or even empty carbs so I had no guilt chowing down on a big bowlful.

Most households with children would especially love it. It's even easy enough for kids to help cook!

Meatball & Ziti Bake
6 ounces uncooked whole-wheat ziti
1/3 cup panko
2 tablespoons minced garlic, divided
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
16 ounces 90% lean ground sirloin
1 large egg
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil, divided
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat broiler to high.

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the panko, 1 tablespoon garlic, 1/4 teaspoon salt, black pepper, ground beef, and egg. Mix until just combined - don't overmix. Shape into 1 inch meatballs and set aside.

In a large ovenproof skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs to the pan and cook for 5 minutes, browning on all sides. Add remaining 1 tablespoon garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add reserved 1/2 cup cooking water, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, 3 tablespoons basil, crushed red pepper, and tomatoes to pan. Reduce heat to medium; cover and simmer 15 minutes.

Stir pasta into tomato mixture and spread evenly. Sprinkle cheese over top. Broil 1 minute or until cheese melts. Sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon basil before serving.

Source: adapted from Cooking Light

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Breakfast Enchiladas

Fluffy eggs are baked around tortillas stuffed with sausage, bacon, and cheese, then topped with more bacon and cheese! This super easy dish is perfect for breakfast or dinner!

Can you tell from the radio silence on the blog that it's summer? Every year, I struggle to maintain regular postings thanks to my crazy workload. I've contemplated taking a blog sabbatical every summer but then I'd miss out on so many delicious summer recipes! So, I've resolved to try harder :)

This twist on a classic breakfast taco was a huge hit in our house. Unlike tacos, which are served somewhat assembly line style, these enchiladas bake up in one dish so they're easy to serve to a crowd. They could also be assembled ahead of time, refrigerated, and baked later!

Breakfast Enchiladas
1/2 lb bacon
1 lb breakfast sausage
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
8 (8 inch) flour tortillas
6 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
2 cups half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Line a baking sheet with foil. Lay bacon in an even layer on the pan and place in cold oven. Set oven temp to 400 and timer to 20 minutes. Once the timer goes off, remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Crumble bacon and set aside. Lower oven temp to 350.

Meanwhile, brown sausage in a large skillet until cooked through, then drain off grease. Gently stir in half the crumbled bacon and 1 cup cheese until it's well combined.

Lightly spray a 9x13 baking dish. Divide the sausage mixture between the tortillas, spooning it down the center of each and rolling tightly. Place each seam side down in the prepared baking dish. 

In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, flour, half-and-half, salt, and pepper. Pour the egg mixture around the tortillas (it will cook up around the tortillas).

Sprinkle remaining 1 cup cheese and bacon over top. Bake for 30-35 minutes. 

Source: adapted from A Chick Who Can Cook

Monday, June 8, 2015

Asparagus and Cheese Tart

A tasty way to enjoy one of summer's best vegetables! This tart is crispy, cheesy, and addictively delicious. Easy enough to whip up for a weeknight dinner but elegant enough for guests.

I nearly squeal when asparagus hits the grocery store each summer - especially when the price drops! We eat a lot of it, though most of the time I grill or roast it. I was looking for something a little different, and most substantial, and this tart was perfect! It works as a side dish but would also be great for brunch or a party appetizer!

You can use a variety of cheeses; I used mozzarella as it's inexpensive and always in my fridge. It also melts well and most people like the flavor. Gruyere would be especially delicious!

The next morning, top a leftover square with a over easy egg and you have breakfast!

Asparagus & Cheese Tart
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
2 cups shredded cheese, such as mozzarella, Gruyere, or fontina
1 pound medium asparagus
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper
flour for workspace

Preheat oven to 400.

Carefully roll the thawed pastry onto a lightly floured surface. Trim any uneven edges then transfer the pastry to a parchment lined baking sheet. With a sharp knife, score the dough one inch in around the edges to create a border. Use a fork and pierce the rest of the dough, about an inch apart, to help avoid it puffing up too much. Bake until golden, about 12 minutes. 

Remove from oven and sprinkle with cheese. Trim the bottoms of the asparagus so they'll fit in between the borders of the pastry shell. Layer the asparagus, alternating ends and tips, and brush with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper then bake until spears are tender, about 20 minutes.

Source: adapted from Martha Stewart

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