Lemon Basil Chicken with Goat Cheese

 Lemon Basil Chicken with Goat Cheese

If you love Chicken Bryan at Carrabba’s you will love this dish, its my little copy cat recipe. To make it even more authentic add Sun dried tomatoes to the sauce, either way it is delicious.

Lemon Basil Chicken with Goat Cheese

4 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts

1 T Italian Seasoning

Salt and Pepper

2 T Olive Oil

1 large shallot chopped fine

8 oz white wine ( I used Pinot Grigio)

2 oz Lemon Juice ( About 1 lemon)

1 T heavy Cream

12 T cold unsalted Butter cubed ( 1 1/2 sticks)

1 T chopped fresh basil

4  1 ” slices of goat cheese

Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breast with Italian seasoning and salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large pan then add chicken cooking about 4 min on each side. turn to low and cover until chicken is cooked all the way through, use a meat thermometer to check doneness. Remove chicken from pan.

Heat a small sauce pan over high heat. Add Shallots, wine and lemon juice, bring to a simmer and cook until liquid is reduced to about 2 T. Lemon Basil Chicken with Goat Cheese

Reduce heat to med high. Whisk in cream. Add Butter 1 T at a time whisking constantly and removing from heat as needed. Continue adding each tablespoon of butter and whisking until all have been added and the sauce is smooth. Season with salt and pepper

and stir in basil.

Lemon Basil Chicken with Goat Cheese

Lemon Basil Chicken with Goat Cheese

To plate chicken breasts, top with goat cheese, drizzle with lemon sauce, garnish with more basil if desired. Serve immediately.

Lemon Basil Chicken with Goat Cheese

Baked Maple Mascarpone Sweet Potatoes

Baked Maple Mascarpone Sweet Potatoes

 

This dish is delicious and decadent. The perfect side dish for Thanksgiving or any special dinner. They bake in a rich butter sauce so they absorb all of the flavor with none of the fluff of the traditional Sweet Potato and marshmallow casserole. Try this as an elegant alternative this year.

Baked Maple Mascarpone Sweet Potatoes

3 large sweet potatoes peeled and sliced in 1/4 ” rounds

4 T butter

8 0z mascarpone cheese

1 t chopped rosemary

2 T maple syrup

1/2 c milk.

Preheat the oven to 350. Arrange sweet potato slices in layers in an oven proof dish ( I used a 8×8)

Baked Maple Marscapone Sweet Potatoes

 

In a sauce pan melt butter and mascarpone cheese together over medium heat. Add maple syrup, milk and rosemary and stir to combine.

Baked Maple Mascarpone Sweet Potatoes

 

Pour mixture over potatoes and cover with foil. Bake for 45 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Serve on the plate with a spoonful of the butter sauce from pan over the top.

 

Cheesy Mashed Potatoes and Carrots

Cheesy Mashed Potatoes and Carrots

 

Mashed Potatoes are my favorite food and these are one of my favorites. These would be a perfect side for Thanksgiving, an alternative to the traditional mashed potatoes, or a weeknight meal.

Cheesy Mashed Potatoes and Carrots

6 large Gold Potatoes peeled and quartered

1 1/2 c peeled baby carrots

1/2 c cream or milk

1 t salt

1/2 t pepper

4 T butter

1/2 t dried thyme

1/2 c sharp cheddar cheese

Add potatoes and carrots to a pot of boiling salted water, cook until fork tender ( your fork should be able to mash them easily). Drain and return to the pot, add cream/milk, salt, Pepper, butter, and thyme. Use and electric mixer or mash by hand until smooth. Stir in cheese and serve. These also make a great topping for Shepherds or Cottage Pie.

Cheesy Mashed Potatoes and Carrots

Hungarian Beef and Pepper Stew

Hungarian Beef and Pepper Stew

 

Hungarian Beef and Pepper Stew

2lbs Beef Stew Meat

1/2 onion cut into chunks

1 T olive oil

1 t salt

1/2 t black pepper

2 T Sweet Hungarian Paprika

2 T flour

2 garlic cloves chopped

2 T tomato paste

10-12 oz beef broth

3 bell peppers sliced

1/2 t caraway seeds

2 T balsamic vinegar

Add  1 T paprika, flour, salt and pepper to a large bowl or plastic bag. add meat and toss or shake to coat. Heat olive oil in a large pan add beef and onion and cook until browned. add garlic and caraway seeds and cook 1 minute more. add beef broth (enough to cover meat), remaining paprika, tomato paste and vinegar, bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer. Cook over low heat for 45 minutes-1 hr, sauce with thicken and meat will become tender. Add peppers and cook 20 minutes more over low heat or until peppers are soft. Serve over buttered noodles or mashed potatoes.

Hungarian Beef and Pepper Stew

 

Baked Pumpkin and Sage Ziti

Baked Pumpkin and Sage Ziti

 

I love pumpkin ravioli but who has time or energy to make that, get all the flavor with none of the work with this baked ziti dish.

Baked Pumpkin and Sage Ziti

1 16 0z package of ziti or other pasta cooked and drained

2 c pumpkin puree

2 c ricotta cheese

1/4 c  shredded parmesan cheese

1 T honey

1 egg

1/2 t ground nutmeg

1 T chopped fresh sage

1 T butter

1/2 t salt

1/4 t pepper

1/4 c shredded mozzarella cheese

While pasta is cooking, mix pumpkin, ricotta and parmesan cheeses, honey, egg, nutmeg and sage in a bowl. When pasta is done drain and return to pot, add butter and stir over low heat until melted. Add pumpkin/cheese mixture and stir until evenly mixed. Stir in salt and pepper. Add to a large baking pan and sprinkle with shredded mozzarella. Bake for 20 min at 325 or until cheese is melted.

Baked Pumpkin and Sage Ziti

 

Baked Pumpkin and Sage Ziti

 

Baked Pumpkin and Sage Ziti

 

Baked Pumpkin and Sage Ziti

Pretzel Crisp Toffee Candy

Pretzel Crisp Toffee Candy

 

I couldn’t wait for the Holiday Pretzel Crisps to come out so I made these today.

Pretzel Crisp Toffee Candy

1 7.2 oz bag Original Pretzel Crisps

1 c  unsalted butter (2 sticks)

1 c brown sugar

1 c chocolate chips

1 c crushed pecans

Preheat oven to 400. line a baking sheet with a silpat or spray with cooking spray

Lay Pretzel Crisps evenly on the pan.

Pretzel Crisp Toffee Candy

 

Melt butter in a small sauce pan with the brown sugar over med high heat

Pretzel Crisp Candy

 

Bring to a boil and boil over med heat for 3 minutes

Pretzel Crisp Toffee Candy

 

Pour over Pretzel Crisps and bake for 5 minutes

Pretzel Crisp Candy

Remove from oven and scatter chocolate chips and nuts over the top while still warm, slightly pressing them down with a rubber spatula to help them stick.

Pretzel Crisp Toffee Candy

 

Refrigerate baking sheet for at least 2 hours or until candy is hard.Break into pieces. Store in an airtight container.

Pretzel Crisp Toffee Candy

 

** Other additions, chopped peppermint candy, toasted coconut, chopped peanuts, peanut butter chips, mini M and M’s

 

Chicken with Citrus Bernaise and Wilted Spinach

 

 

I am a foodie, I love to make my own sauces and purees but I have a weakness, powdered Bernaise sauce. Don’t judge, I have tried making my own, it was good (and much more difficult) but when I crave Bernaise I want the Knorr green, red, and yellow packet.  I was shopping in Publix the other day and heard over the loudspeaker that the Aprons lady was making some kind of fish with a Citrus Bernaise.  Sounds delicious, I thought, so I changed up my menu a little to include it. I always have packet in the pantry as well as some sort of citrus in the fruit bowl. Here is what I came up with…

Chicken with Citrus Bernaise Sauce and Wilted Spinach

For the chicken

2 T olive oil

2 T lemon juice

1 t salt

1/4 t black pepper

1/2 t dried thyme

Mix together pour into a large zip lock bag  and add 4 – 6 chicken cutlets. Seal and refrigerate 30 min to 2 hours. Grill over medium high about 5 min per side depending on thickness ( alway check temp with a meat thermometer to ensure doneness).

Citrus Bernaise

1 package Knorr Bernaise Sauce mix

1 c milk

6 T butter

1T Orange Juice

1/2 T lemon juice

1/2 t zest from orange and lemon

fresh parsley (if desired)

Follow Bernaise sauce directions, then add juices and zest stir and cook about 2-3 minutes over low, add chopped fresh parsley if desired.

Wilted Spinach

1 T olive oil

2 bags washed baby spinach

1 t garlic

salt and pepper

heat oil in a large skillet over med high,

add spinach and garlic and cook over low heat, stirring constantly until spinach is just wilted. Remove from heat, do not over cook.

Wilted Spinach

Place spinach on plate, top with grilled chicken and ladle Bernaise sauce over top.

Chicken with Citrus Bernaise and Wilted Spinach

 

** This would be great with grill fish as well

Peach and Cream Muffins

Peach and Cream Muffins

My good friend just brought me back a bunch of delicious peaches from Georgia and I wanted to use them before they started to go bad. I made these yummy muffins which are great for breakfasts, snacks or dessert.

Preheat oven to 375

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

3/4 white sugar

1T baking powder

Pinch of salt

(Whisk these ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.)

1/2 c of melted butter (cooled slightly)

1c heavy cream

1/4c water

2 large eggs

1/2 of pure vanilla extract

1 1/2 c of fresh peaches peeled and diced

In a bowl whisk together melted butter, cream, eggs, water and vanilla. Get your dry ingredients  and mix together in a large bowl and then make a small”well” in the middle, pour in the wet ingredients and stir by hand until incorporated but not over mixed (there may be some lumps). Add peaches and mix gently. Divide batter into 12 large muffin tins or 18 for smaller snack sized muffins, bake until golden brown about 20-25 minutes (check by inserting a toothpick into the muffin, it should come out clean)

Peach and Cream Muffins

Peach and Cream Muffins

Book Club: Let’s Pretend This Never Happened and Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake Loaf

Let's Pretend This Never Happened- Jenny Lawson

 

This month’s book was a real hoot, laugh out loud funny in fact. A refreshing change from our woman in peril books we often read. This is the memoir of blogger Jenny Lawson, daughter of a taxidermist who lived a bizarre childhood that you could only laugh about. she definitely puts the fun in dysfunctional as she tries to make a life for herself as a mother, wife, friend and now blogger. You can check out her blog here. We had fun with this book club with one of our member even setting a giant chicken (its in the book) on the hostesses doorstep and ringing the bell and hiding. I still don’t know how she found the chicken.

Let's Pretend This Never Happened, Giant Chicken

As for food this was a hard one because Jenny can’t cook except for the microwave and that just wouldn’t cut it at our all foodie book club. I decided to make a chocolate chip “loaf” because she tells the story of when she was trying to sell the house she stuck a whole roll of chocolate chip cookie dough in the oven for the smell, and it started on fire. It was good and even better the next day as all crumb cakes are.

Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake Loaf

Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake Loaf

 

Cake

1 1/4 c flour

1/2 c cake flour

1 stick butter

3/4 t baking powder

1/4 t baking soda

1 c chocolate chips

3/4 c sugar

1/2 c buttermilk

2 eggs

1 t vanilla extract

1/2 T lemon zest

Topping

1 c flour

1 c sugar

1/2 stick hard butter

chocolate chips

powdered sugar

 

Pre heat oven to 350. Mix all dry ingredients together in a bowl and set aside. Cream softened butter in a mixer, add zest, and slowly add sugar. add in eggs and vanilla  and beat until just combined. Add 1/3 flour mixture to mixer, then 1/2 buttermilk, then 1/3 flour, 1/2 buttermilk, and finally lat 1/3 of flour. mix until combined scraping down the sides. Stir in chocolate chips and pour into a greased loaf pan.

Combine the butter flour and sugar for the topping mixing with a fork or your hand until crumbly. Sprinkle on top of the batter and then sprinkle with Chocolate chips. Bake for 40 minutes or until a tooth pick comes out clean. Sprinkle with sifted powdered sugar if desired.

Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake Loaf

 

 

Summer Crock Pot Recipe: Chicken with Sun Dried Tomatoes, Lemon and Goat Cheese

Chicken with Sun Dried Tomatoes, Lemon and Goat Cheese

I like the ease of my crock pot / slow cooker especially in the Summer when we are busy and I don’t want to get the house any hotter by turning on the oven. The problem is most slow cooker recipes are heavy and not that appealing in the warm Summer months. So here is a lighter recipe for the crock pot based on my love for the Chicken Bryan at Carrabbas

Chicken with Sundried Tomatoes, Lemon and Goat Cheese

Chicken with Sundried Tomatoes, Lemon and Goat Cheese

6 boneless skinless chicken thighs ( or 4 Breasts)

1 shallot chopped

zest of 1 lemon

juice of 2 lemons

1 t chopped garlic

2 T butter

2 c chicken broth

1 t salt

1/4 t pepper

1 t dried basil

1/4 c chopped sun dried tomatoes ( dried, not in oil)

4 oz goat cheese

1 T chopped fresh basil

Add chicken, shallot, lemon juice and zest, garlic, butter, chicken broth, salt, pepper, dried basil, sun dried tomatoes and 2 oz of the goat cheese to your slow cooker, cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours. Serve over pasta, noodles or rice and top with remaining 2 oz of goat cheese and fresh basil.