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Saturday, June 25, 2011

Spinach-Stuffed Chicken

This morning as I was lounging in bed, thumbing through the channels on TV and came across this program called Home Made Simple. I have seen this online before, but have never watched the program, so I thought lets see what they are all about - it was more or less a home improvement DIY type show with short cooking segments, and this was one of the recipes the featured. It really struck me and sounded so good and something different, so as I was out shopping today I made sure I had the necessary ingredients and whipped this up for dinner, and it really wowed me so I thought I'd share it with ya'll - sorry no pictures but you can check out their web site for their pics.Home Made Simple Of course I had to put my own spin on things and I added a teaspoon of dried minced garlic and seasoned the top with sea salt and some more minced garlic, and I didn't make the sauce because last year I bottled tomatoes with garlic, basil and onion, I also served mine with tortellini. All topped in Parmesan cheese, with a side of garlic bread.  

Give it a try, it is fairly inexpensive yet elegant meal. This one might even make a debut in an Dutch Oven soon.

Have fun cookin'.
Spinach-Stuffed Chicken

1 package (10 ounces) frozen leaf spinach, thawed and squeezed dry 
1/3 cup reduced fat ricotta cheese, softened 
3 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan cheese 
4 thin, skinless chicken cutlets 
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard 
Salt and black pepper, to taste 

Tomato Basil Sauce 

3 tablespoons olive oil 
1 white onion, minced 
4 cloves garlic, minced 
1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes 
1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped 
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped 
Zest of half a lemon 


1. Heat broiler. In a small mixing bowl, combine spinach, ricotta and Parmesan. Mix well and set aside. 
2. Lightly season chicken with salt and pepper. Evenly spread 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard on one side of cutlets, then top the middle of each with 1 tablespoon spinach mixture. Starting from the short end, roll the chicken tightly and arrange seam-side down on a baking sheet. 
3. Broil chicken until crust browns and an instant-read thermometer registers 160°F, about 12-15 minutes. 
4. While the chicken’s cooking, make the sauce. Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, add onions and sauté for 1 minute. Add garlic, sauté for another minute, then fold in tomatoes, basil and parsley. Simmer until hot, about 2-3 minutes. Add lemon zest, salt and pepper. 
5. Spoon tomato sauce over chicken, then garnish with chopped basil and grated Parmesan. Serve with pasta—try spaghetti or penne. 

Saturday, June 4, 2011

One of my favorite Salads/Dessert

Ok so graduation is over, next week is camp for Melissa, next weekend is the garage sale, what was I thinking when I thought that things would slow down in the summertime. Anyone have suggestions on how to put the brakes on? I feel like I'm on the fast track to old age, I want to be on the slow track!!!

Anyway I figured since summer time is the time for BBQ's, Pot Lucks, and gatherings in general, I'd share a recipe that is great to take to these gatherings. I'm not sure how to classifiy this - Jell-O Salad or as a Dessert because of how much I love this recipe. As an experienced of a cook that I am - I struggle with making Jell-O. I have learned that you have to have patience and let things cool between steps. This is not a fix 10 minutes before you have to leave.

I hope you enjoy this one as much as I do.

Raspberry Pretzel Jell-O Salad

Pretzel crust:
1 1/2 C crushed pretzels
1/2 C sugar
1 cube (1/2 C) butter, melted
Mix and press into a 9 x 13 pan. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes. Let cool.
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C sugar
8 oz. Cool Whip
Blend together. Spread on top of pretzel crust. Refrigerate until cool.
6 oz. Raspberry Jell-O
2 C boiling water
2 C fresh or 1 bag unsweetened raspberries
Dissolve Jell-O in water. Add raspberries, stir. Pour over cream mixture. Refrigerate until set.

Now some alterations - I have a family member with Celiac - and we have made this with Gluten free Pretzles and you really can't taste the difference. Also if you are not a Raspberry fan, you can change this up and make it with Strawberries, Blueberries, and I have seen it at Thanksgiving with Cranberries, just change your fruit and Jell-O.

Have fun cookin'

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Stuffed Croissants

Another of Melissa's favorite meals...

Stuffed Croissants

2 C diced cooked chicken
5 chives diced
2 stalks chopped celery
1/2 C mushrooms diced (optional)
1 C cream of chicken soup
1 8 oz softened cream cheese
4 cans croissant rolls
Mix all ingredients until smooth.
Take Refrigerator Croissants (Pillsbury) and roll 2 triangles together to form a rectangle put the mixture in the center and fold together making a pocket. Dip in melted butter and roll in crushed (dry) Chicken Stove Top Stuffing. Bake @ 350 for 20-30 minutes until golden brown.

Have fun cookin'
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