Category Archives: chicken

Chicken Fajitas on the Grill

IMG_5599.JPG

 

IMG_5593.JPG Wow–Fajitas on the Grill and the best part is there were no pots and pans to clean up! Cooked in Aluminum Foil Packs right on the grill! They call them Hobo Packs.

Very quick prep and delicious ingredients. Feel free to substitute whatever peppers you would prefer. This is what I did.

Last night there were 4 of us so I used about 2 lbs. of chicken but kept everything else the same and it worked out just fine!

You’ll need heavy-duty aluminum foil for the grill.

Ingredients:

1 lb. chicken tenders–you can 1/2 them lengthwise into thin strips or leave them whole which is what I did. If you can’t find tenders use a cutlet and cut into thin strips.

1 medium red onion, halved and sliced 1/4 inch thick (approximately)

1 poblano chile or serrano chile whatever you can get. Stemmed and cut lengthwise into 1/2 inch strips. I used both .

1 Red Bell Pepper–cut into strips lengthwise

1 Yellow Bell Pepper –cut into strips lengthwise

*you can really use any peppers that you’d like–these are the ones I used Shishito Peppers would be wonderful as well.

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds

Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper- you’ll need to be fairly generous with the salt –I used about 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt and a few grinds of the pepper mill.

4 -6 fresh oregano sprigs–at least 1 in each packet–I used 2 in each packet.

1 lime, thinly sliced crosswise

Warm flour or corn tortillas, sour cream , guacamole and salsa and some hot sauce for serving. I used small tortillas but any kind will work out nicely. This is a very easy Summer Meal.

Directions:

Cut up all the veggies, onions and chicken and light the grill, I had the grill turned up high , it should be medium to high. I put it to high to pre-heat and then lowered to a more medium – high, if you are unable to do this step just check on them after 12 minutes to make sure the bottom isn’t burning.

In a large bowl, toss the chicken, onion and all the peppers with the olive oil and cumin seeds. Season generously with salt and pepper and toss again.

Arrange 4 14 inch sheets of heavy duty foil on a work surface ( see pics) app. 14 inches don’t get the ruler out. Just eyeball it, it needs to fit a pile of veggies and chicken. Last night I increased the chicken so we had about 6 packs.

Pile the chicken and veggies evenly on one 1/2 of each foil sheet and top with the oregano and lime slices. Fold the foil over the ingredients and pinch the edges to seal.

Place the foil packets on the grill, close the lid and cook over moderately high heat until the chicken is cooked through, anywhere from 12 to 15 minutes.

Open the packets and serve with warm flour fajitas, sour cream , guacamole, salsa and hot sauce.

*Packets can be made a night ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator.

Enjoy!

 

Easy Peasy Chicken Caprese

This is one of those recipes that I make that is so super easy. Very few ingredients and other than cutting tomatoes and mozzarella balls, there is very little prep. You gotta love meals like this, especially in the summer when these beautiful heirloom tomatoes are abundant. I really only make this in the summer . It is light and delicious and makes for a beautiful salad as well and you can serve it at room temperature. I made this last night with burnt brussel sprouts on the side . You’re not going to believe how easy this is. It’s amazing!

Ingredients:

1 container marinated bocconcini ( mozzarella balls) you will need the oil from the container to marinate chicken ( it comes in an olive oil marinade with spices)

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves , I buy them pounded thin

Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

1 pint heirloom ( if you can get them) cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

Directions:

Take bocconcini balls out of the marinade. Cut bocconcini balls in quarters. Transfer about 1/2 of the marinade from bocconcini to a medium size baking dish , add the chicken , salt and pepper the chicken and let it sit at room temperature for about an hour before cooking. If you’d like you can refrigerate , and take out and bring to room temperature before grilling.

Put cheese in a bowl, add the remaining oil marinade and add the cut tomatoes to this bowl. Salt and Pepper to taste, give it a good stir and put in refrigerator till you’re ready to cook chicken. I removed from fridge about 1/2 hour before I cooked the chicken. Just bring it to room temperature.

Grill the chicken over medium high heat , till you get nice grill marks, probably about 8 minutes. You can cut the chicken into smaller pieces and mix with tomatoes and cheese. I just plated up the chicken and put tomato/cheese mixture on the plate. Perfect summer meal.

Sheet Pan Honey Balsamic Chicken with Brussels Sprouts

This is an easy and healthy sheet pan meal with honey balsamic chicken and brussels sprouts ready in 1/2 hour!!!!! My kind of meal every day of the week . It was so super easy and ingredients were minimal . I stopped and picked up chicken and brussels sprouts and I had all the other ingredients in the house. I asked the butcher at Whole Foods to pound the chicken breasts so they would cook quickly and it was truly perfect. I served over Brown Rice but this is totally optional.  Easy Peasy Healthy and Easy that’s how I like it.

Ingredients:

3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 lb. brussels sprouts, cut in 1/2 lengthwise

3 Tbsp. Olive Oil

1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning

1/2 tsp. Kosher Salt and a few turns on the Pepper Mill

1 cup Balsamic Vinegar

4 Tablespoons Honey

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Ask Butcher to pound chicken breasts to even thickness and less than 1 inch thick. Combine chicken and brussels in a large bowl, drizzle with olive oil and toss to coat.

Arrange chicken and brussels sprouts on a sprayed sheet pan ( Pam).  Season with italian seasonings and salt and pepper. Transfer to oven and bake for 15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and brussels are almost fork tender. I cooked for 15 minutes.

Now prepare the glaze:

Add balsamic vinegar to a medium sauce pan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and boil for app. 6-8 minutes until reduced to half the original volume. Remove from the heat and stir in the honey, garlic powder, and salt. Allow the sauce to cool while the chicken finishes cooking.

After Chicken and Brussels have baked for about 15 minutes, switch to broil for app. 2-4 minutes . Be careful not to burn up brussels sprouts, just check on it after 2 minutes and then again. Remove chicken sheet pan from oven, drizzle with the balsamic glaze and a little cracked black pepper and serve. I served over rice and it was just perfect.

*This should serve 3-4 people nicely especially with the rice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roast Chicken Salad with Buttermilk Dressing – Weeknight Salad

DSCN0069photoI was in the mood for something light for dinner and wanted to make a dressing with buttermilk and mustard. I picked up a roast chicken because I was very pressed for time, but didn’t want to eat a plain roast chicken from the market. I grabbed some beautiful romaine, but I know this would be perfectly awesome with kale,  Joel is not big on kale and prefers romaine. Next time I make this I am using chopped kale, preferably baby kale. In any event I used romaine, took the skin off the chicken and shredded it with my hands. Just used romaine, tomatoes, chicken and dressing. Next time out I add avocado for sure, doubt Joel will eat it but I am putting in avocado. This is an awesome lunchtime salad and so easy to pull together for a light dinner meal and mix in whatever other veggies you’d like.  Dressing is killer and only 3 Tablespoons of Buttermilk! This is also awesome if you have leftover chicken and don’t know what to do with it. The inspiration for this salad and dressing comes from a blog I follow,  124 Park. Part of being a part of the blog culture I am exposed to some really wonderful blogs , I just wish I had the time to read all of them.

This dressing should be good for at least 4 servings. Feel free to double it.

Ingredients:

Buttermilk Dressing:

1 clove garlic

1 egg yolk ( let egg sit out at room temperature) just not really cold

3 tablespoons of buttermilk ( lowfat is fine)

1 tablespoon whole grain mustard

1/4  teaspoon kosher salt and a few grinds of the pepper mill (you can always add more salt if you would like)

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup olive oil

*feel free to double

Combine all ingredients except for olive oil in the blender including salt and pepper . Keeping blender on , add olive oil from the top in a slow stream until well incorporated.

Put salad greens, avocado , chicken and any other vegetables you’d like in a large bowl. Add dressing and mix salad adding dressing as needed.

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner-Mustard and Balsamic

IMG_7542

Chicken in Marinade for 1/2 hour

IMG_7548

Chicken finished cooking

IMG_7553 (2)

plated chicken

IMG_7538

Lemon and chopped Rosemary

IMG_7545 I made this for dinner the other night and I have to say it was very delicious. I used boneless skinless chicken thighs, of course you can use any cut of chicken you’d like.  All I needed was the chicken and the fresh rosemary.  I had all the other ingredients on hand. You will need to marinate for about 1/2 hour and cooking time is about an hour, no need to marinate over night which is part of what I loved about this recipe.  Balsamic Vinegar and Dijon Mustard and a few other easily obtainable ingredients make this a no fuss recipe.  This recipe is for 8 boneless skinless thighs but feel free to double it up, I used about 10 thighs . It would be perfect on the grill as well. I used my oven and I have to say we both loved this recipe.

The chicken would also be wonderful on day 2 as a leftover in a salad!

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

8 boneless chicken thighs

1 Tbsp. Dijon Mustard ( make it heaping)

1/4 cup of Balsamic Vinegar

1/2 cup of Olive Oil

2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice ( I average lemon)

2 Tbsp. Fresh Rosemary chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

app.  1/4 tsp. of kosher salt, I just sprinkled lightly over the chicken and about 6 grinds on the pepper mill. If you’re doubling recipe you will obviously need more salt and pepper

Directions:

In a bowl, combine the mustard, vinegar, garlic, rosemary and lemon juice. Slowly add in the olive oil with the mixture while you whisk–to emulsify.

Place the chicken in a container or Pyrex  (don’t use metal). I sprinkled about 1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt over the chicken tops.  Pour the marinade over the chicken. I left it out for 1/2 hour and let it marinate, you can refrigerate it.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Transfer the chicken to a sprayed ( cooking spray ) baking dish and empty any remaining sauce on top of it.

Place in the oven and bake for 1 hour , or until the chicken is cooked through. It got a nice crust without drying out the chicken after one hour. Depending on your oven and the size of your chicken 1 hour should do it. If you’re working with breasts you’ll have to cut into chicken after 50 minutes to check for doneness depending on the size of your breasts. Haven’t tried it on the grill yet but I can’t imagine this would be anything but delicious, just don’t burn it up!!!!!!

Baked Balsamic Chicken Parmigiana

As all of you know from reading my blog and following my recipes I have truly embraced the one pan meals. They are so super easy to prepare and cook not to mention cleaning up is pretty snappy.  I threw this recipe together the other night and I have to say it was pretty tasty.  Juicy roasted tomatoes and balsamic vinegar act as a delicious sauce for this wonderful week-day meal but why not for the weekend as well? You’ll love the tomato balsamic sauce not to mention melted mozzarella cheese! This is a keeper and the little bit of red onion added another delicious layer of flavor to this tasty dish. This is what I did, I actually gave you all a few options in the ingredients dept. so mix and match what works best for you .IMG_0265IMG_0266IMG_0269IMG_0272

Ingredients:

3-4 skinless chicken breasts ( I used 3 breasts for the two of us) 1 nice size chicken breast per person is probably a good guess.

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 Teaspoon Italian Seasonings — if you don’t have this use 1/2 tsp. dried basil and 1/2 tsp. dried oregano

1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

Freshly Ground Black Pepper to taste

2 Teaspoons of Garlic Powder — divided or use 1 1/2 Tablespoons Fresh Garlic which would probably be 5-6 garlic cloves

1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes which I left whole if you’d like for a mushier sauce you can 1/2 the tomatoes

1/4 red onion, peeled and thinly sliced

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1 Tablespoon packed brown sugar–if you want to omit the sugar you can — I used it

3/4 cup to 1 cup Mozzarella Cheese — I used shredded

*you can garnish with fresh chopped parsley or fresh basil

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place chicken breasts in a sprayed ( Pam or any other baking spray you like) and drizzle with the olive oil. Season with dried seasonings and if you’re using fresh garlic 1 Tablespoon of it here.

Rub seasonings all over the chicken.  Put tomatoes and red onion around the chicken in the baking dish.

Whisk together the balsamic vinegar, sugar and garlic powder or remaining 1/2 Tablespoon of fresh minced garlic. Pour over the chicken breasts and flip each breast to evenly coat.

Bake in pre-heated oven for app. 20-25 minutes depending on the thickness of your chicken breasts or until chicken is no longer pink in the middle. You can cut into a piece to check for doneness.

When chicken is cooked through sprinkle with cheese and set oven to broil for 4-5 minutes or until cheese is melted .

This would be delicious served over rice or pasta but we just ate it as is and it was pretty delicious on its own.

Baked Chicken, Mushrooms and Rice

This was such a delicious dinner and pretty easy to put together. I used skinless -boneless chicken thighs . Chicken Thighs are pretty forgiving in the baking dept. because they don’t dry out. I find white meat to dry out easily.  The chicken baked on top of the the rice in one baking pan! My kind of meal. Serve a salad or a green veggie alongside and it’s just perfect.

This recipe should serve 4 depending on the size of the thighs you use. 2 cups of rice is a lot of rice so that won’t be a problem.

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Chicken:

2 Tbsp. Olive Oil

1 1/2 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. garlic powder

1/2 tsp. dried thyme

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

6 nice size skinless boneless chicken thighs

Rice:

1 large onion chopped small

4 cloves garlic–minced

2 Tbsp. Olive Oil

1 tsp. kosher salt

1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

2 cups chicken broth or chicken stock

1 1/2 cups hot water

2 cups long grain rice– Basmati Rice or Jasmine rice can also be used

Mushrooms:

2 Tbsp. Unsalted Butter

2 cloves garlic

1 pint of button mushrooms ( or cremini) cut into quarters

Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a bowl , combine the olive oil, paprika, garlic powder, thyme, salt and pepper. Add the chicken and coat each piece evenly with the seasonings. Set aside, allow the chicken to sit while you prepare the rest of the meal.

Spray a large oven-proof baking dish (10 x 15 at least) with a non stick cooking spray . Add the onion, garlic, oil, salt , pepper, broth or stock, and water into the dish. Stir well to combine. Then add the rice.

Arrange chicken in the water over the rice, cover tightly with foil and bake for 40 minutes. Make sure you add the chicken over the rice towards the middle of the baking dish, this will insure the rice gets cooked properly.

 

After 40 minutes uncover and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes , until the chicken is cooked. Change oven setting to broil and broil for app. 3 minutes to brown the chicken and crisp the rice.

Towards the end of cooking the chicken I prepared mushrooms. Heat butter in a small saute pan over medium heat. Saute the garlic in the butter and add the mushrooms; cook until softened , season with some salt and pepper. Then once they were cooked I let them sit on the stove with the heat turned off till the chicken was done. Once chicken is done you can add a low heat and while chicken is sitting heat up the mushrooms again.

When chicken and rice is finished cooking, allow it to sit for app. 5 minutes to set all the flavors.

I removed the chicken and fluffed up the rice and added the mushrooms into the rice. Arrange chicken on top of the rice when you plate it up. If you’d like you can sprinkle some chopped fresh parsley for color and added flavor!

 

 

Chicken and Rigatoni in One Pot–One Pot Pasta

photo 2 photo 3 photo 4 (2) photo 5 (2) photo photo 2 (2) photo 1I must say that the first time I saw this recipe for one-pot pasta I was hesitant. I read up on it and found out that the actual recipe for this one-pot pasta hailed from Puglia. So for all of those “haters” out there I am just saying that I did do my homework here and found out that yes they do this in Italy and original recipe was from there. OK that’s enough of that. It doesn’t really matter where it’s from now does it? I have made 2 versions of this type of pasta and all I can say is yum. I will also add that you need to be a little bit more attentive during the cooking but the result was fabulous. We loved the creaminess and the pasta came out perfectly al dente.  You just don’t want to overcook it, taste for doneness and sit down and eat. It was delicious the next day cold out of fridge as well. Give this one a try you won’t be sorry. Joel was very happy with the clean-up detail as well because it was one pot! Whole thing took under an hour from start to finish. One pan, people!!! dry noodles, sauce ingredients, water, wine a few good things and you’ve got a delicious impressive dinner.

*I used my large Le Creuset pot. A large skillet would work fine here as well.

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

5 cloves of garlic, chopped

app. 1 – 1 1/2 lbs. of chicken breast, cut into small chunks. Just buy a regular package of chicken breasts and cut them up as I did ( see photos)

2 large roasted red peppers, sliced into thin slices ( straight out of the jar) see photos

6 cherry peppers, chopped and de-seeded , you can use hot if you like it spicy or just mild cherry peppers which is what I used (straight out of the jar) see photos

1 cup water, you will probably add about 1/2 cup more but you should start out with a cup

1 lb. rigatoni, I like the way the rigatoni works of course penne or another type of macaroni will work just fine

1 cup white wine, use what you have open as long as it’s not a sweet wine

1 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes

1 cup Parmesan Cheese grated, more for serving

1/2 stick unsalted butter

1/4 cup heavy cream

2 teaspoons fresh basil torn, you’ll want to add a little more at the end of cooking as well.

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt

Crushed red pepper flakes, optional. If you like the heat add a little bit during cooking and you can always add more at end. 1/4 teaspoon to start is good.

Directions:

In a large skillet type of pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add in the garlic and chicken . Saute the chicken until it is just browned on the outside but not cooked through.

Stir in the roasted red peppers and cherry peppers, and sauté for another minute or so. Add in the crushed tomatoes and wine. Add in the water and the raw pasta and bring to a low boil. If you need more water you’ll know at this point , add a bit more water (a little at a time) Continue to cook, stirring very often, until the pasta has cooked to al dente , it will take anywhere from 15- 20 minutes. Taste pasta and judge how much longer it needs.

When pasta is done to your liking, reduce heat to low and add in the butter, basil and salt. When the butter is completely melted into the past, add in the cream and the cheese. Let simmer on low for another ten minutes or so, stirring occasionally. Top with additional cheese, basil and red pepper flakes if you like.

Serve warm.

Chicken Cacciatore

Chicken Cacciatore 011My daughter Jennifer turned me on to this delicious and I do mean delicious recipe. Original recipe from Giada de Laurentis . I took a few liberties with it and it turned out just perfectly. I only used 4 thighs and 2 breasts with skin on and bone in, if you’re not comfortable with the skin I would take out skin but leave the bone in.  I am certain that  there is enough sauce for at least 1 more thigh and 1 more breast , there was more than enough sauce.  I served over brown rice and it was just perfect. This is a beautiful meal for a dinner party  or just the two of you. I used my Le Creuset pot and it was a one pot meal. Thanks to Jenn for pointing it out to me, this one is a keeper.

Ingredients:

4 – 6 chicken thighs with skin on and bone in

2 -3 chicken breasts skin on and bone in

Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

1 box ( 8 oz.) of Mushrooms, I used sliced Cremini ( Baby Bella)

3 tablespoons of Olive Oil

all-purpose flour for dredging

1 large red bell pepper, chopped

1 onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

3/4 cup white wine

1 28 oz. can of diced Tomatoes with juice

3/4 cup chicken broth

1  1/2 teaspoons of dry oregano

Directions:

First thing I do is dry all the chicken pieces on paper towels, this will help hold the salt and pepper and make a crackly crust. Sprinkle dried chicken pieces with Salt and Pepper generously. Dredge the chicken pieces in flour to coat lightly. In a large heavy pot ( I used my Le Creuset) heat the oil over a medium-high flame. Add the chicken pieces to the pot and saute till just golden brown, about 5 minutes per side. If all the chicken doesn’t fit , do it in 2 batches, I did thighs and then I did breasts. Transfer the chicken to a plate with tongs and set aside. Add the bell pepper, onion and garlic to the same pan and saute over medium heat until the onion is translucent and pepper is soft, about 8 minutes. Then add in mushrooms  season with salt and pepper and cook for another five minutes.  Add the wine and simmer until reduced by half, about 4 minutes.  Add the tomatoes with their juice, broth, and oregano.  Then return the chicken to the pot and turn chicken pieces to coat in the sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer. Continue to simmer over low-medium heat until the chicken is just cooked through, at least 30 minutes, I cooked for 40, and chicken was perfect.

Using tongs, transfer the chicken to plates. If you’d like you can boil the sauce without the chicken till it thickens, my sauce was perfectly thick. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and serve.

Chicken Cacciatore 006Chicken Cacciatore 008Chicken Cacciatore 009Chicken Cacciatore 010Chicken Cacciatore 016

Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas

IMG_7067IMG_7069More of my favorite way to cook with Chicken Fajitas made on the Sheet Pan . I made this the other night for the first time. I am always experimenting with making Chicken Fajitas in new ways and trying to keep the oil down. If you use too little oil they come out tasting dry and that’s no good so use the 3-4 tablespoons of olive oil that I suggest.  This is what I did and I served with small soft tortillas and you can provide any fixings you like. I also served over rice in a bowl which is how I like to eat my fajitas. Obviously what you do with them is totally up to you! A little sour cream and guacamole never hurt anyone either.

*it is important that all veggies be cut up into fairly uniform sizes this will help cooking process and timing

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs. of chicken breast tenders– or just cut some chicken cutlets into strips

1 yellow bell pepper –sliced into 1/4″ slices

1 red bell pepper–sliced into 1/4″ slices

1 orange bell pepper–sliced into 1/4″ slices

1 small red onion–sliced into 1/4″ slices

3-4 Tablespoons of Extra Virgin Oil –now I have tried 2 Tablespoons and it was a little dry so use your own discretion here

1 teaspoon of kosher salt –this was enough for us but again use your own discretion

several turns of the pepper mill — freshly ground black pepper always works best

2 teaspoons of chili powder

1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon of onion powder

1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon of smoked paprika

Lime for squeezing at the end

*fresh chopped cilantro for garnish and delicious flavor if you like it

*warmed tortillas–if you like

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

In a large bowl , combine onion, bell pepper, chicken strips, olive oil, salt and pepper and all the spices. Start with 2 Tbsp. of Olive Oil and add more . I really felt it needed more than 2 Tbsp.

Toss well and combine and allow to sit for a few minutes.

Spray a baking sheet with non stick cooking spray

Spread chicken and onions and everything on baking sheet

Cook at 425 degrees for about 20 minutes, if you’d like to use a meat thermometer here chicken should be 165 degrees. After 20 minutes I turned the oven to broil and cooked for additional 2-4 minutes just letting the veggies get some nice color. Watch it carefully to make sure it doesn’t burn.

I served in bowls over rice with warm mini tortillas and sour cream and guacamole.

*should serve 3-4 nicely with the rice and sides

Enjoy!