Category Archives: chicken

Chicken Lettuce Wraps

This is a staple in my Chinese Restaurant take out , I love it. It’s sort of on the “lighter” side of most Chinese main entrees. It is usually in the appetizer section of the menu. img_2523

It’s super easy but contains a lot of ingredients that you may not have in the house so some grocery shopping may be involved.  I highly recommend this recipe for a lovely lunch or delicious dinner!! I didn’t even use salt or pepper because it had so very much flavor it didn’t even need it. I would taste for it though since everyone’s taste is a little different where salt and pepper is concerned.

This recipe literally cooked in less than 1/2 hour and it really was delicious. This is a dish the whole family may enjoy.

I like my chicken lettuce wraps in a bowl with lettuce , some rice and some Sriracha sauce. ( see pic of last nights dinner)

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 pound ground chicken or turkey–I prefer dark meat because I think it’s more flavorful use whatever you prefer

2 cloves garlic minced

app. 1 medium onion (yellow), diced

1/4 cup hoisin sauce

2 Tablespoons soy sauce –I use low sodium

1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar

1/2 -1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger–you can use a full tablespoon if you really love ginger, it was fine with 1/2

*1 Tablespoon Sriracha, totally optional. This didn’t make it super spicy just gave it a little kick. You can use Sriracha on the table if you like.

1 8 oz. can whole water chestnuts, drained and coarsely chopped. I had sliced in the house and I just gave them a rough chop

2 green onions ( scallions) green and white, sliced thinly

*Kosher Salt and Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1 head butter lettuce or large leafs of iceberg lettuce– either one is fine

Directions:

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add ground meat and cook until browned, about 5 minutes. Make sure to crumble the meat as it cooks, drain any excess fat.

Stir in garlic, onion, hoisin sauce, soy sauce , rice wine vinegar, ginger and Sriracha until onions have become translucent, a few minutes.

Stir in the chopped water chestnuts and green onions until tender, another few minutes. Now taste for salt and pepper, as I said I didn’t use any salt and pepper at all.

For serving, spoon meat into the center of a lettuce leaf.

If you’d like you can serve with hoisin sauce and sriracha on the side.

You can also add a vegetable if you like — frozen peas work well or bean sprouts, mushrooms or anything you’d like.

Chicken in One Pot with Garlic, Tomatoes and Potatoes

IMG_6426
chicken nestled in the baking pan with vegetables
IMG_6424
cut up potatoes, tomatoes, fresh thyme and pieces of smashed garlic.
IMG_6427
finished product–crispy chicken with delicious veggies

You all know by now how very much I love one pot meals. I am talking about everything goes in one pan into the oven and cooks. Not slow cooked just regular meals in one pan!!!!! So simple to prepare , you’ll look like you really know what you’re doing and so delicious to eat. This one got a ringing endorsement from Joel and he’s as fussy as they come. This one should be perfect for whole family and should serve 4 . This is what I did. Last night I just used chicken thighs you can use whatever parts of chicken you prefer. Skin on Bone in is preferred here. 

*you’ll need a large baking dish, I used a ceramic one as shown. Pyrex works well here as well.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs.  Yukon gold potatoes ( I used about 4 for just the 2 of us ) peeled and cut into about 8 pieces each potato, you’ll want potatoes to be uniform in size so they all cook the same amount of time

6 cloves of garlic smashed ( take the whole garlic clove and whack it with the back of the knife and then remove skin)

1 pint cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes

2 Tablespoons olive oil

app. 12 sprigs of fresh thyme

app. 1 – 2 teaspoons of kosher salt for potatoes and chicken

app. 1/2 to 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

*1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper–we love the heat but if you don’t just omit

1 whole chicken cut up in 8’s or 10’s , I ask butcher to remove the backbone and cut into 8’s or 10’s. App. 3-4 lbs. total

Directions:

Preheat the oven with the oven rack in the middle to 425 degrees.

Spray the baking dish with a cooking spray (Pam) I mean you want the baking dish to clean up easy right?

Peel the potatoes and cut up into bite size pieces. Add to the sprayed baking dish . Smash and peel the garlic. Rinse the tomatoes and add as well along with the thyme.

Drizzle with the 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with about 1/2 teaspoon of salt and app. 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper and the crushed red pepper. Toss it all together with your clean bare hands and spread into a single layer.

Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Season both sides of the chicken with app. 3/4 teaspoon  and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. I am pretty liberal with the salt here because I feel chicken can be rather bland. Use at your own discretion and what works best for you and your family. Place the chicken amongst the vegetables , see my pictures for how I did it. Roast until the chicken is cooked through and the potatoes are tender. App. 50-60 minutes.

*A little note on the chicken. I checked my chicken after 50 minutes and it was done so I removed to a plate and covered with aluminum foil to keep warm . I placed potatoes back in oven for another 10 mins. or so till they were done. Delicious! the tomatoes burst and were perfect served alongside the chicken and potatoes.

*to check doneness of chicken–a meat thermometer inserted into the breast at middle part should read 160 degrees.

Italian Wedding Soup made with Chicken Meatballs

It is most definitely soup season again. the chill in the air makes it the most perfect time of year to start making soup for dinner again. even if you live in a warmer climate this is a most wonderful meal. Paired with a salad and some crusty bread you have a very heartwarming meal.

Italian Wedding Soup with Chicken Balls

This is one of my absolute favorite recipes. It is a soup , which is also a full meal. It is hearty and pretty healthy.  It is one of my staples from September through April. It freezes well and you can just take it out of the freezer the night before, and you’ll have a wonderful meal the next evening. When you defrost it you will probably want to add broth/water to it. add a little at a time till you get the consisitency you like. Enjoy:)

Ingredients: chicken meatballs

1 lb. ground chicken

1/2 lb chicken sausage, casings removed

3 slices whole wheat bread for bread crumbs ( I put into food proccesor with steel blade for crumbs) I remove crusts it should be app. 1 cup of bread crumbs

2 teaspoons minced garlic ( 2 – 3 cloves)

1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano ( fresh is best) but whatever you have will do

1/4 cup grated Parmesan ( again nothing beats fresh) but whatever you have will do here as well

3 tablespoons milk

1 extra large egg, lightly beaten

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Soup Ingredients:

 

 

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small -medium yellow onion minced

1 cup diced carrots ( 3 )

1 cup diced celery (2 stalks)

10 cups chicken stock

1/2 cup dry white wine( use whatever you have open)

1 cup small pasta tubetini, ditalini, stars, etc.

5 ounces fresh spinach, washed and trimmed

*fresh dill ( I love the flavor) add at your own discretion about 1/4 cup minced fresh dill.

Directions:

preheat the oven to 350 degrees  put parchment paper on a cookie sheet.

for the meatballs, place the ground chicken, sausage,bread crumbs, garlic, Pecorino, Parmesan, milk, egg, salt and pepper  all in a bowl and mix well with a fork.  I use a teaspoon, and make 1 to 1 1/2 inch balls and drop onto parchment paper lined cookie sheet. you should have about 30 to 40 small balls. bake for 25 – 30 minutes, until cooked through and lightly browned. set them aside. (I made about 30 balls, they were a little larger this time out)

For the Soup:

 heat the olive oil over medium – low heat in a large heavy bottomed soup pot ( Le Creuset type pot) Add the onion, carrots, and celery and saute until softened, about 10 minutes, don’t brown. Add the chicken stock and wine and bring to a boil, at this point I let soup cook a while to soften the vegetables, app. 1 hour. ( a low simmer) if you’re in a hurry you can probably do the whole soup in 1/2 hour , veggies will be soft enough to eat. if some of the liquid evaporates you can always add a little more broth.

chicken balls out of the ovenItalian Wedding Soup cooking

 Add the pasta to the simmering broth and cook another 6 – 8 minutes, until the pasta is tender. Add the meatballs and simmer for another minute or so. taste for salt and pepper. Stir in the fresh spinach and cook for another minute or so, the spinach will just wilt. Ladle into soup bowls and serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

Chicken in One Pot with Garlic, Tomatoes and Potatoes

IMG_6426
chicken nestled in the baking pan with vegetables
IMG_6424
cut up potatoes, tomatoes, fresh thyme and pieces of smashed garlic.
IMG_6427
finished product–crispy chicken with delicious veggies

You all know by now how very much I love one pot meals. I am talking about everything goes in one pan into the oven and cooks. Not slow cooked just regular meals in one pan!!!!! So simple to prepare , you’ll look like you really know what you’re doing and so delicious to eat. This one got a ringing endorsement from Joel and he’s as fussy as they come. This one should be perfect for whole family and should serve 4 . This is what I did. Last night I just used chicken thighs you can use whatever parts of chicken you prefer. Skin on Bone in is preferred here. 

*you’ll need a large baking dish, I used a ceramic one as shown. Pyrex works well here as well.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs.  Yukon gold potatoes ( I used about 4 for just the 2 of us ) peeled and cut into about 8 pieces each potato, you’ll want potatoes to be uniform in size so they all cook the same amount of time

6 cloves of garlic smashed ( take the whole garlic clove and whack it with the back of the knife and then remove skin)

1 pint cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes

2 Tablespoons olive oil

app. 12 sprigs of fresh thyme

app. 1 – 2 teaspoons of kosher salt for potatoes and chicken

app. 1/2 to 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

*1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper–we love the heat but if you don’t just omit

1 whole chicken cut up in 8’s or 10’s , I ask butcher to remove the backbone and cut into 8’s or 10’s. App. 3-4 lbs. total

Directions:

Preheat the oven with the oven rack in the middle to 425 degrees.

Spray the baking dish with a cooking spray (Pam) I mean you want the baking dish to clean up easy right?

Peel the potatoes and cut up into bite size pieces. Add to the sprayed baking dish . Smash and peel the garlic. Rinse the tomatoes and add as well along with the thyme.

Drizzle with the 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with about 1/2 teaspoon of salt and app. 1/4 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper and the crushed red pepper. Toss it all together with your clean bare hands and spread into a single layer.

Rinse the chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Season both sides of the chicken with app. 3/4 teaspoon  and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. I am pretty liberal with the salt here because I feel chicken can be rather bland. Use at your own discretion and what works best for you and your family. Place the chicken amongst the vegetables , see my pictures for how I did it. Roast until the chicken is cooked through and the potatoes are tender. App. 50-60 minutes.

*A little note on the chicken. I checked my chicken after 50 minutes and it was done so I removed to a plate and covered with aluminum foil to keep warm . I placed potatoes back in oven for another 10 mins. or so till they were done. Delicious! the tomatoes burst and were perfect served alongside the chicken and potatoes.

*to check doneness of chicken–a meat thermometer inserted into the breast at middle part should read 160 degrees.

Honey Roasted Chicken – Holiday Chicken

DSCN4234DSCN4234This recipe was actually given to me by my daughter Jennifer.  She has made it numerous times. always to raves from the family.  It is a delicious chicken dish made with honey so it so appropriate for the jewish new year! sweet and savory as our new year should be! enjoy it.  Remember to pay attention to cooking directions as you will not be preheating oven!!!!!!

Obviously this recipe can be cut in 1/2 for a smaller group.

Ingredients:

1 stick butter or margarine

1/2 cup minced yellow onion

2 large cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup Dijon Mustard

1/2 cup mild honey

1 teaspoon kosher salt

a rounded teaspoon curry powder

2 tablespoons peach or mango chutney ( available in most supermarkets)

small handful of dried currants or chopped dark raisins

2 roasting chickens  cut up in 8’s or you can cut recipe in 1/2 and use 1 chicken and 1 roasting pan

Directions:

you will need 2 shallow baking sheets with 1 inch rims ( you may be able to get it on 1 large sheet)Spray baking sheets well with cooking spray.

to make sauce:

Melt butter/margarine in a heavy 2 quart saucepan over medium heat. while it is bubbling, saute onion and garlic until softened, about 3 – 5 minutes. add remaining ingredients except for chicken and stir until well combined. heat until warm throughout and set aside to cool slightly.

Chicken Prep

I would spray each baking sheet with pam cooking spray first

Rinse and pat chicken dry . (each piece) dip each piece in honey mixture, coating chicken completely. lay chicken pieces ( skin side up) on baking sheets. spoon any remaining sauce over chicken.

To Bake Chicken:

place chicken in a cold oven, turn heat to 400 degrees and bake for one hour. if you are using 2 baking sheets , roast in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and switch shelf positions 1/2 way through the cooking time.

to serve:

Transfer chicken to a warmed serving platter and serve . this chicken is good hot, at room temp. and cold out of fridge the next day.

*if you cannot find peach or mango chutney ( I found it at Whole Foods) Stonewall Kitchen Brand , you can use Peach Jam, Apricot Jam, etc. Probably Saucy Susan would work. Use your imagination and don’t kill yourself trying to find the chutney. I think the chutney would give it a bit more kick, and cut the sweet, but either one will be fine.

Happy Holiday from my Kitchen to Yours

Baked Chicken Meatballs

I love meatballs — all kinds of meatballs and these were just delicious. I made with Basil Pesto Pasta and it was just perfect. You can also drop these into any red sauce for a delicious meal. They are very easy to make and we ate some and I stored the rest in the freezer for the next time.

Ingredients:

1 pound ground chicken

1 egg –lightly beaten

1/2 cup Panko or regular breadcrumbs– I prefer Panko

1/2 cup grated Parmesan Cheese

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

*crushed red pepper flakes — if you like a little heat add a pinch if not omit

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large bowl combine all the ingredients. Don’t over-mix just mix till combined

For easy clean-up line your baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray.

Roll the meat into smallish balls — not too small — I think I got 28 balls out of this. Line them up on your baking sheet and bake for app. 20-30 minutes.

Check on them after 20 — I cooked for about 25 minutes. It will depend on your oven and the size of the meatballs.

You can double up this recipe easily for lots of meatballs. And like I said I froze a bunch for next time.

Served with my Basil Pesto Pasta.

 

Lime-Garlic and Ginger Chicken —

I made this recipe for dinner last night and it was just delicious. It elevated the weeknight bbq chicken for sure . The only thing is this recipe is best left to marinade for at least 6 hours. After breakfast I made the marinade and let it sit all day. This chicken can sit in the marinade for up to 8 hours–just let it come to room temperature before cooking. Not so tough to do and worth the results. If you don’t have an outdoor grill use a grill pan on medium-high . I plan on making this chicken all year round. Not a lot of ingredients at all and very easy to put together.

This can easily be doubled.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 to 2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs which is what I used but feel free to use chicken breasts

Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

1/3 cup Mayonnaise — now I don’t use diet mayonnaise and the mayo burns off so you won’t be tasting it -the mayo makes it moist and yummy

1 Tablespoon Lime Zest — app. 2 limes and save the lime to squeeze over the chicken

1 Tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger — if no fresh ginger use about 1/8 of a teaspoon of powdered ginger –1/8 to 1/4 of powder is equivalent to 1 Tablespoon Fresh

2 garlic cloves finely minced — I always put my garlic in my mini processor for a fine mince . If you don’t have a mini processor you can just mince by hand but it’s a great little machine to own.

Directions:

Pat the chicken dry with some paper towels.

In a large enough bowl to add the chicken stir together the mayonnaise, lime zest, garlic, ginger and 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and about 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Add the chicken to the mayo mixture and stir to coat. I put my chicken in the fridge for the whole day and removed it about an hour before cooking to bring to room temperature.

To grill: Heat your grill to medium high and grill the chicken till cooked through I cooked for about 5 minutes per side and they were perfect. Breasts will cook up faster so just watch them . They’re finished when juices run clear. Turn as necessary to avoid burning them.

If cooking inside the house with a skillet/grill pan cook over medium-high heat also about 5 minutes per side.

I squeezed the fresh lime over before serving and they were just delicious.

Enjoy!!! Simple and Delicious!

 

Gotta-Love-Cilantro Chicken in Mustard Lime Sauce

Here’s a delicious chicken dish made with lime instead of the usual lemon. It has a nice little kick from the chili powder, and I just adore fresh cilantro. Now I know a lot of you are shaking your heads saying ‘ugh cilantro’, and quite honestly if you’re that cilantro hater this probably isn’t the dish for you. If you are a cilantro lover as I am, then go for it. It’s fresh and savory and super easy to make. I also love when you can combine all the ingredients in the food processor, as it makes for such an easy time. Also , Joel just loved it…who knew he’d like cilantro so much???

Ingredients: 

1 lb. skinless boneless chicken breasts (not too thick)

1/2 cup fresh lime juice

1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

1/4 cup Dijon mustard

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 Tbsp. chili powder

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Combine lime juice, cilantro, mustard, olive oil, chili powder, salt and pepper in a food processor. Pulse until all ingredients are well combined.  I pat chicken breasts dry with some paper towels first, then place in a 7 x 11 Pyrex baking dish (spray with Pam first). Pour marinade over the chicken, cover and refrigerate for at least an hour (up to 6 hours would be awesome. I like to do it in the morning for that night.)

Heat, grill and cook chicken 4- 6  minutes on each side until browned and cooked in center. I used thin cutlets and they cooked up rather quickly. How long you cook them really depends on the thickness of your chicken breasts.

If you don’t have a grill, you can cook at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes. Or even better a grill pan on the stove-top which I do all year round when I can’t grill.

I served with red peppers and corn roasted on the grill. I also cut up some sweet potatoes and sprinkled a little olive oil and s & p and roasted in the oven for about an hour.

Kung Pao Chicken

Kung Pao Chicken is one of my favorite Chinese food staples in the restaurant and takeout. I decided to make it myself and this is what I did.

It really came together rather quickly even though there are so very many ingredients.

Really delicious and served over brown rice or white rice or any rice or no rice.

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

For the Marinade:

2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

1 Tablespoon Dry Sherry

2 Teaspoons Corn Starch

1- 1 1/2 Chicken Tenders or Breasts cut into app. 1 -2 ” chunks– boneless and skinless chicken breasts

For the Sauce:

1 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar

2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

1 Tablespoon Hoisin Sauce

1 Tablespoon Asian Sesame Oil

1 Tablespoon Corn Starch

1/2 Teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes — use less if you like it very mild–this did not make it spicy hot but use at your own discretion

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/3 cup water

For The Stir-Fry Chicken

3 – 3 1/2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil

3 cloves garlic –minced

1 large red bell pepper , diced

2 stalks celery — I diced but you can slice thinly into small pieces do whatever you prefer with it

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

5 scallions, white and green parts — I diced but you can slice thinly here too

1/3 cup whole roasted unsalted cashews

 

Directions:

Marinate the chicken . In a medium size bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, dry sherry and cornstarch until the cornstarch is dissolved. Add the cut up chicken and toss to coat. Let it stand at room temperature for at least 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. I did this step and then proceeded with the rest of the recipe.

Prepare the sauce: In another medium bowl whisk together all of the sauce ingredients until the cornstarch is dissolved.

Heat a large non-stick skillet or a regular skillet ( spray first with cooking spray) Heat till very hot then add 1 Tablespoon of the oil and swirl to coat. Add the bell pepper, celery and salt . Cook and stir frequently until slightly softened and starting to brown, app. 5 minutes. Transfer the vegetables to a large bowl and set aside.

Add an additional 1 Tablespoon of the vegetable oil to the pan and set over high heat again. Add half of the chicken ( don’t crowd it) and brown on one side about 2 minutes. Turn the chicken pieces and continue cooking for another 2 minutes — just till chicken is cooked through. Transfer this chicken to bowl with vegetables. Add another tablespoon of vegetable oil to the pan and add the remaining chicken and cook the same way as first batch. Add app. 1/2 Tablespoon more oil to the pan along with the garlic and scallions and cook stirring the chicken for another minute. ( if pan still has enough oil you can omit this 1/2 Tablespoon of Oil)

Add the rest of the chicken and vegetables to the pan along with the sauce. Reduce the heat to low and cook until chicken and vegetables are cooked through and the sauce is nice and thick about a minute or two depending on the size of your chicken chunks. Stir in the nuts — I keep them whole or you can chop up. Taste and adjust seasonings but I thought it was just perfect. The sauce will thicken as it sits so if necessary put a few tablespoons of water if too thick.

I served over rice and we ate it right away so sauce was just perfect. If you prepare early the sauce may thicken.

Loved this recipe and will definitely add to my rotation . It seems like a lot of work but honestly it came together rather quickly.

 

Pizza Chicken — a little lighter version

This is a fresh take on a heavier more classic Chicken Parmigiana. I mean don’t get me wrong sometimes there’s nothing better than the classic version but other times you just want to lighten it up. I had thin chicken breasts, tomatoes and I had bought a ball of fresh mozzarella. Didn’t want to fry up the cutlets and was sort of craving a parmigiana type of meal. This is what I did last night.

Improvise and use what you have in the house — any balsamic will work and more or less tomatoes will work , and if you don’t have fresh mozzarella use shredded or whatever you have in the house. This recipe is sort of loose and will work with different variations of ingredients. My kind of recipe. It’s a quick prep and a quick cook because of the thin chicken breasts.

Ingredients:

1 Package thin-sliced skinless, boneless chicken breasts app. 1 – 1 1/2 lbs.

18 oz. of grape tomatoes — you can half but I left mine whole and you can also add more tomatoes if you’d like– feel free to improvise here

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 tsp. white balsamic or white wine vinegar or any balsamic vinegar will do

2 minced garlic cloves

1 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. dried oregano

2 tsp. kosher salt –divided — you may need a little more to season the chicken I just estimated

1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

app. 10 oz. fresh mozzarella thinly sliced into rounds

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a large size rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.

In a large bowl toss tomatoes, olive oil, vinegar,  garlic, 1 Tbsp. oregano, and 1 Tsp. Kosher Salt then pour them onto rimmed baking sheet.

Season the chicken on all sides with 1 tsp. or more of the kosher salt and 1 tsp. oregano. Place the chicken into the tomato mixture.

Roast until chicken is almost fully cooked through and tomatoes are starting to burst, 8-10 minutes. Remove from the oven and arrange mozzarella rounds over the chicken.

Return to oven and roast until cheese is melted and chicken is fully cooked through 2-5 minutes.

Remove from oven and serve.