Monthly Archives: June 2014

Chicken & Mushrooms in White Wine Sauce

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Before we get into food talk…

I just wanted to say thank you. Thank you for reading. Thank you for commenting. Thank you for trying my recipes. Creating these recipes and sharing them with you brings me so much joy.

Time is a precious thing and when I think about you taking time out of your day to read a post or make a recipe, I am deeply honored. I hope I inspire you in the kitchen and inspire you to enjoy food and eat well. :)

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And speaking of eating well… let’s talk about this dish.

It has all the simplicity of a weeknight dinner with flavors to make you think you’re dining out.

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Chicken and mushrooms get a dose of sophistication with a splash of white wine. Serve over some garlic-seasoned grains for a complete meal.

Make this dish, light some candles, put the phones away, and have a little date at home… on a Wednesday! Could be fun and will definitely be delicious. :)

Chicken & Mushrooms in White Wine Sauce; Recipe or Not

serves 2-4

  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 pint mushrooms, roughly chopped (I used baby bellas.)
  • 1/2 small onion, diced (about 1/3 cup)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine or white cooking wine
  • pinch of dried thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2-3 T. olive oil
  • fresh herbs & Parmesan for topping

Serve over your favorite grain seasoned with salt and garlic powder (Quinoa is pictured above; other ideas are brown rice, couscous or barley.)

The Prep: Heat a tablespoon or two of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and cook until the chicken is no longer pink and is turning brown. Remove the chicken and put it on a plate. Drain a little of the juices remaining in the pan. Add another tablespoon of olive oil and heat the pan back up to medium heat, add the onion and sauté for a minute or two. Then add the garlic for one minute and next, the mushrooms. Season with salt, pepper, and a pinch of dried thyme. Add the white wine and let the mixture cook for 4-5 minutes to allow the mushrooms to absorb the wine. Add the chicken back in, stirring to make sure the chicken gets coated in the sauce and cook for another 3 minutes or so. Serve over garlic-seasoned grains and top with Parmesan and fresh herbs. Enjoy!

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Homemade Crepes: Savory with Roasted Tomato Sauce & Sweet with Fruit and Yogurt

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I specifically remember the first time I ever tried a crepe. It was in 6th grade during my carpenter pants phase (yikes!). I had a French class and my teacher brought a crepe maker to class one day… probably one of my favorite days of school.

Crepes then disappeared from my life until I got married. After much encouragement from my hubby who loves savory crepes, I decided to give it a try.

It seemed a little daunting at first (how do you get them to be perfectly thin and round without a crepe maker?!) but I was pleasantly surprised that it didn’t take long at all the get the hang of it.

For homemade crepes, the trick is really runny batter, a really hot pan, and master pan swirling skillz. (You know you got ’em.)

The title of this post could actually be His & Hers Crepes. It’s probably a more accurate title anyways because that’s the situation here.

These crepes are “hers”… sweet, creamy, fruity perfection. I used greek yogurt and a combo of strawberries, nectarines, and plums for my filling. I topped it off with my favorite granola.

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And these are “his”. Filled with eggs, bacon, swiss, and topped with a creamy roasted tomato sauce & herbs. Even my sweet crepe loving self couldn’t resist them!

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Homemade Crepes; Recipe or Not

makes 8-9 crepes if using a pan with a 9″ base diameter

Crepes:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 c. milk (can use soy or almond)
  • 1 c. all-purpose flour
  • 3 T. butter, melted
  • pinch of salt

Fillings:

Sweet: Greek yogurt, fruit, and granola. (I used lemon greek yogurt but any fruit flavor works and I used strawberries, nectarines, and plums.)

Savory: Eggs, bacon, swiss, and roasted tomato sauce (recipe below). (I used turkey bacon because that’s my hubs’ favorite. I’ve also done eggs with sautéed mushrooms and spinach and swiss which was really good.)

The Prep: Put all the crepe ingredients (not the fillings) in a blender and blend for about 30 seconds or until the mixture is totally smooth. Let the mixture set at room temperature while you get your fillings ready. Heat a non-stick pan (I recommend cast iron.) over medium heat* and spread a small amount of butter over the bottom of the pan. Once it’s hot, pour 1/3 cup of butter in the pan and quickly swirl the pan so the batter covers the bottom and forms a circle. See picture at end of post. You should see the batter darken slightly as it cooks and you may see bubbles (like cooking pancakes). After about a minute, use a spatula to gently loosen the edges and carefully get the spatula under the crepe to flip it. Cook for about 30 seconds to a minute on the other side. Repeat this process until all of the batter is cooked.

*As you are cooking the crepes, if you notice the pan is getting too hot you can turn it down a little.

Note: If you don’t use all of the crepe batter, it will keep covered in the fridge over night. Also, cooked crepes keep well covered overnight in the fridge and are easily reheated the next day.

Creamy Roasted Tomato Sauce; Recipe or Not

makes approx. 3/4 cups

  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 T. diced onion
  • drizzle of olive oil
  • pinch salt and pepper
  • pinch of your favorite herb
  • 1/4 c. half n half

The Prep: Preheat oven to 400°. On a baking sheet toss the tomato halves and onion with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake for 20 minutes. Pour the roasted tomatoes & onion into a blender with a pinch of dried herbs and the half n half. Blend for 30 seconds. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Pour on your savory crepes!

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Lemon Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding

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I know school is out but can we have a little history lesson? I promise there won’t be a quiz. :)

Chia seeds are a big food trend on the rise and all for good reason. These liiiittle seeds have a biiiig history… which I happen to find very interesting and wanted to share with you!

Chia seeds were sort of like the Clif bars of the ancient Aztec and Mayan cultures (except 10x better for you and 10x more versatile). They were used for sustainable energy, hydration, medicine, grown as crops, and used as currency. Now that’s an impressive resume.

If they were so important, why haven’t we always known about them?

That’s because Spanish conquerors came in, took over, and banned chia seeds because they were also used frequently in religious ceremonies. Bummer. We could have been eating chia seed pudding our whole lives.

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It wasn’t until a little exploration was done by some scientists and nutritionists that chia seeds were brought back into the picture.

And now here we are with articles sprouting up (I <3 seed puns.) about how nutritional they are… which is also for good reason. Chock full of fiber, omega-3’s, calcium, minerals, and blood sugar regulating properties… chia seeds’ nutritional resume is just as impressive as its history.

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We’re taking this small but mighty seed and giving it a modern look. The texture of this pudding is comparable to tapioca pudding with just the slightest crunch. The seeds soak up the liquid and turn into a gel-like consistency. The lemon and vanilla give it a really light, summery flavor. Top it with your favorite summer fruit and you’ve got a great breakfast, afternoon snack, or dessert.

Lemon Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding

  • Servings: 2-3
  • Print

1/2 c. chia seeds
3 T. maple syrup
zest of one lemon (should be about 3/4-1 t. zest)
juice of half the lemon
3/4 t. vanilla extract
2 c. milk of choice (I used almond milk.)

In a bowl, stir together the chia seeds, maple syrup, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla. Pour in the milk and carefully stir all the ingredients together. Cover the pudding and let it set in the fridge for 2 hours, stirring it once after 1 hour. Top with your favorite fruit and enjoy!

https://recipeornot.wordpress.com/2014/06/12/lemon-vanilla-…a-seed-pudding/

Chia seed history and health lesson brought to you by the following sources:

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/06/03/chia-seed-benefits-_n_3379831.html

http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/top-10-health-benefits-chia-seeds-6962.html

http://www.foodandnutrition.org/January-February-2014/Chia-Seeds-Tiny-Seeds-with-a-Rich-History/

http://www.chiaseeds.net.au/pages.php?pageid=10

http://www.chia.org.uk/chia-history.php

Grilled Caesar Salad

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I love finding cooking inspiration at restaurants.

Whenever I eat out, I make mental notes of dishes that really stand out to me.

It doesn’t happen often but every once in awhile, I’ll come across something that really peaks my interest.

Today, I’m bringing you one of those restaurant-inspired dishes.

I had this Caesar salad as a side dish once and was so intrigued by the grilled romaine and the flavor it added. It was topped by big Parmesan shavings, thin, crispy flatbread, and a house made dressing that had a hint of lemon. YUM.

The flavor of that salad stuck with me and I just had to give it a try myself!

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So here we are with a big ol’ plate of grilled Caesar salad.

Since I live in an apartment and don’t have a grill, I borrowed my dad’s. It was really nice having a co-griller. (Thanks, Dad!)

My family was around and got to sample the goods. It was fun for me to share it with them (and nice having people to help eat all the salad so I didn’t have a ton of leftovers). The grilled romaine was a hit!

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We’re not grilling the romaine to a charred crisp. I would just call it… flavor enhancement. We’re cutting the romaine in half and grilling each side for a few minutes. It’ll get slightly brown and a little wilted but not in a salad-left-in-the-fridge-too-long kind of way and the rib of the romaine leaves still have their crunch.

This was super fast to put together and could be a weeknight dinner if you added some chicken, shrimp, or other protein.

Grilled Caesar Salad; Recipe or Not

serving size: one head of romaine would be enough for a dinner salad for two if you add chicken, shrimp, or some kind of protein. As a side salad, it would probably be enough for 3-4 people. 

  • 1 head of romaine, cut in half
  • 2 slices of bread cut in half
  • Your favorite Caesar dressing
  • Grated Parmesan (about 1/4 cup)
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • Squeeze of lemon juice, optional
  • Several tablespoons of olive oil

The Prep: Rinse and pat dry the romaine halves. Lightly brush both sides of the romaine halves and bread with olive oil. Heat grill to medium heat and grill both sides of the romaine and bread for 4-5 minutes. The romaine should have some browning but not be burnt and the bread should be toasted and crispy. Gently cut up the romaine to bite size pieces and toss with the dressing, Parmesan, black pepper, and lemon juice. Enjoy with the grilled bread!