The perfect finger food for kids or party guests, these crispy chicken fingers are light and crunchy, and pair beautifully with a hearty marinara dip.
c/o Anne Coleman (aka Short Order Mom) via family.go.com
Panko is a Japanese bread crumb that provides a crunchy coating like no other. Combined with Romano cheese, the result is divine. A thick and hearty tomato sauce offsets the crunch and makes this a perfect meal for company or special dinners at home.
2 large chicken breasts – boneless and skinless
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg
2 Tablespoons water
1 cup Panko
1/4 cup finely shredded Romano cheese
1 cup spaghetti sauce
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/2 cup chopped tomato
Salt and pepper to taste
Oil for frying
Combine spaghetti sauce, chopped green pepper and tomato in a small saucepan. Simmer for 10 minutes.
While sauce is cooking, clean chicken breasts of all visible fat and cut each in half horizontally, making 2 filets from each breast.
Combine Panko and Romano cheese in a bowl. Put flour into another bowl and mix the egg and water in yet another bowl until well blended.
Heat a large non-stick pan over medium-high heat and add several tablespoons of oil to the pan. When the oil ”shimmers,” it is ready for the chicken. Oil that is not hot enough will absorb into the chicken and oil that is too hot will smoke.
Working quickly, coat each piece of chicken in flour – shaking off excess, and then in egg wash and lastly in Panko and Romano coating. Make sure there are no bare spots on each breast.
Fry each coated filet in the heated oil until golden brown, turning once during cooking — 5 minutes on each side.
Drain well on paper toweling and serve immediately with warm sauce.
While spring may have hit many of you guys weeks, or even months ago, in cooler-climate places like Colorado, Northern Utah, and Maine, it tends to take a little longer. But now that it looks like spring has finally sprung and may hopefully (*cross your fingers!*) be here to stay, I thought a little recipe based on some springtime produce was in order.
Now I love fresh produce any time of year, but it was always hard for me to figure out what was in season when. Fortunately, Kendra over at Kendra’s Cookin’ made this handy little chart that I have taken advantage of many times now. Thanks Kendra!
So I started with some fresh green beans. These can be purchased at pretty much any grocery store, but I prefer to get mine from the local Farmer’s Market or Bountiful Baskets. (Have you heard of them by the way? They are fantastic! I definitely encourage you to check them out here, and then see if there are any locations close to you. Of course, any fresh green beans will do. Just promise me you will not use frozen, or worse, canned, for this recipe from The Pioneer Woman, found here. One thing I love about her site is that she provides step-by-step pictures too! And this, my dears, is what we are making:
1 pound green beans
2 Tbs. bacon grease (I have to admit, I used olive oil. I just can’t bring myself to spoon a chunk of bacon grease into my skillet. You may also substitute butter.)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup chopped red pepper
1/2 to 1 tsp. kosher salt (If you don’t have kosher, you ca definitely substitute regular table salt, just don’t use as much.)
Dash of black pepper (or to taste)
First, I prepared the green beans by snapping the ends off. If you want smaller bite size pieces, feel free to do that as well…it is definitely easier for the little ones mouths. (Speaking of, if you do have smaller children at home, this is a great way for them to help with prep work!)
Then I added the olive oil to a large skillet over medium-low heat. (Remember you can use the bacon grease or butter too.) Next, I added the garlic and onions, cooking for about a minute and a half.
Finally, I piled in the green beans, stirring and cooking until they turned bright green. After about a minute, I added the chicken broth, red pepper, salt and black pepper.
Then I turned the heat low and covered my skillet. Leave the lid cracked to allow steam to escape. Cook 20 to 30 minutes, or until liquid evaporates and beans are slightly soft, but still crisp.
Note: She also says you can add more chicken broth white the beans are cooking if you need to. But don’t add too much or it won’t be able to cook away enough for the onions and peppers to become caramelized and delicious!
Not too difficult and only a few things to chop = my kind of recipe! Since I’m sure a lot of people can’t justify simple green beans for an entire meal, I also made some lemonade chicken. It came from The Best 1001 Short, Easy Recipes, which is currently backordered from Border’s so you can find it here instead. Most of the recipes have around 5 ingredients too, which makes life (and the grocery bill) even better.
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I cubed mine so they would be smaller pieces and easier to serve.)
1 can frozen lemonade, thawed (6 oz.)
1/3 cup soy sauce
1 tsp. garlic powder
First, preheat your oven to 350*. Then, grease a 9×13 baking dish. Place chicken in single layer in pan.
Mix together lemonade, soy sauce, and garlic powder, and pour over chicken. Cover with tinfoil and bake for 45 minutes.
Remove tinfoil and using a large spoon, pour the juices over the chicken again. Cook another 10 minutes, uncovered.
See, easy peasy! Obviously, I would start the chicken before the green beans because it cooks longer, and then everything can be nice and ready at the same time. It’s a delicious meal, and pretty healthy too! Perfect for a spring night when you don’t want to spend more time chopping and mixing than actually eating.
Combine cherries and brandy in a small bowl. Let stand 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 325°.
Sprinkle pork evenly with mustard, pepper, and salt.
Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add pork; cook 8 minutes, turning pork every 2 minutes or until browned. Remove pork from pan. Reduce heat to medium; add onion and garlic. Cover and cook 5 minutes. Add cherry mixture, broth, jelly, thyme, and bay leaf; bring to a boil. Return pork to pan. Cover and bake at 325° for 2 hours or until tender. Remove pork from pan; let stand 10 minutes. Discard bay leaf. Bring broth mixture to a boil; cook until reduced to 1 1/2 cups (about 3 minutes).
Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine flours and salt in a bowl; stir well with a whisk.
Beat sugar and eggs with a mixer at high speed until thick and pale (about 4 minutes). Add oil and extracts, beating until well-blended. Add flour mixture, beating at low speed just until blended. Stir in cherries and chocolate chips.
Divide dough in half; turn out onto a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Shape each portion into a 10-inch-long roll, and flatten to 1-inch thickness. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove rolls from the baking sheet; cool 10 minutes on a wire rack. Reduce oven temperature to 325°.
Cut each roll diagonally into 20 (1/2-inch) slices. Place slices, cut sides down, on baking sheet. Bake at 325° for 10 minutes. Turn cookies over, and bake an additional 10 minutes (cookies will be slightly soft in center but will harden as they cool). Remove from baking sheet; cool completely on wire rack.
4 pieces, 6 ounces each boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce, eyeball it
1 tablespoon hot sauce (recommended: Tabasco)
2 tablespoons grill seasoning blend (recommended: Montreal Steak Seasoning, by McCormick)
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
4 tablespoons tomato paste
1 large sour deli pickle, chopped
6 to 8 slices sweet bread and butter pickles, chopped
6 soft sammy buns, such as soft burger rolls, split
Bring liquids to a simmer in a small to medium skillet and slide in the chicken breast meat. Gently poach the chicken 10 minutes, turning once about after 5 minutes.
While chicken poaches, heat a second medium skillet over medium low heat. To hot skillet, add extra-virgin olive oil and garlic and onion and gently saute until chicken is ready to come out of poaching liquids. Combine the next 5 ingredients in a medium bowl and reserve.
When the chicken has cooked through, add 2 ladles of the cooking liquid to the bowl, combining with the sauces, spices, brown sugar and tomato paste. Once the liquids and seasonings are combined, remove chicken, slice it, and transfer to the medium bowl. Using 2 forks, shred the chicken and combine with the liquids. Add the shredded chicken to the onions and garlic and combine well. Simmer together 5 to 10 minutes, using extra cooking liquids to make your chicken as saucy as you like.
Combine sour and sweet pickles in a small bowl. Split rolls and fill with scoops of shredded chicken. Top with pickle relish and serve.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24 regular muffin cups with paper cupcake liners.
Prepare the brownie mix according to package directions for cake-like brownies. Fill the cups half full with brownie batter. Place about 1 tablespoon peanut butter chips in the center of the batter, or press 1 peanut butter cup into the batter in each muffin cup until the batter meets the top edge of the peanut butter cup.
Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, until the cupcakes are set. When they can be handled safely, remove them from the muffin tins and let cool completely on wire racks. Store in an airtight container.
In a medium bowl, stir together the yogurt, 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar, sugar, pepper, cinnamon and salt. Place chicken breast halves in a shallow baking dish, and pour the sauce over them. Refrigerate for 1 hour, turning chicken over half way through.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Scrape the marinade off of the chicken breasts, and place them into the hot oil. Quickly brown the chicken on both sides, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, and let rest for 3 minutes.
While the chicken is cooking, transfer the marinade to a saucepan. Bring to a low simmer over medium heat. Remove stems from strawberries, and slice thinly so they will fan nicely. Set aside.
Slice chicken breasts on the diagonal into 1/2 inch thick slices. Place on serving plates, and sprinkle with lemon juice. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the marinade over each chicken breast, and fan one sliced strawberry over the top. Garnish with a sprinkle of fresh mint and parsley. If you really love balsamic vinegar, finish the dish off with an artful drizzle.
Strain strawberries and set aside, reserving juices. In a saucepan bring cornstarch and strawberry juice to a gentle boil. Remove from heat and let cool.
Whip cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla together.
In a separate bowl beat whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Fold whipped cream into cream cheese mixture.
Arrange ladyfingers around sides and bottom of the 8 or 9 inch springform pan, standing ladyfingers lengthwise around sides of pan. Pour 1/2 of the filling into the pan, then place a layer of ladyfingers on top of filling. Pour remaining filling over ladyfingers.
Spread strawberry sauce over top of cake and place the whole strawberries on top. Refrigerate and remove from pan once thoroughly chilled.
1/2 pound fresh mozzarella cheese,sliced 1/4-inch thick
2 large vine-ripened tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1 cup fresh basil leaves
Coarse salt to taste
Freshly-ground black pepper to taste
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
In a circular design around the side of a serving plate, alternate fresh mozzarella slices on a large platter (or on individual plates if you are doing individual portions) with sliced tomatoes, overlapping for effect.
Tear fresh basil leaves and sprinkle liberally over the slices. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Sprinkle capers over the top.
Just before serving, drizzle on some top-quality extra-virgin olive oil.
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
1 (3-pound) chicken cut into eighths
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound cremini mushrooms, quartered
1 large red onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 large yellow bell pepper, thinly julienned
1 serrano or jalapeno chile, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
1/2 cup dry red wine
1 cup low-sodium canned chicken broth
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes and their juices
3 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar or capers
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
1 pound spaghetti (size 8 or 9) cooked al dente
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat. Season the chicken pieces on both sides with salt and pepper and place in the pan, skin side down and cook until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the breasts over and cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the chicken to a large plate.
Add the remaining oil to the pan and heat until almost smoking. Add the mushrooms and cook until golden brown, season with salt and pepper and remove to a plate.
Add the onion and bell pepper to the pan and cook until soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the serrano, garlic and chili flakes to the pan and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the wine and cook until almost completely reduced. Add the chicken stock, tomatoes, and rosemary and bring to a simmer. Return the chicken and mushrooms to the pan, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the pan and cook until the chicken is tender, about 30 minutes. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon to a large shallow bowl and tent loosely with foil.
Increase the heat to high and cook the sauce, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, 8 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, stir in the vinegar and basil and pour the sauce over the chicken. Garnish with fresh basil sprigs. Serve over spaghetti and sprinkle with grated cheese.
Cookies and Crema
1/4 of a 20-ounce roll refrigerated sugar cookie dough, sliced 1/4 inch thick (8 slices)
1/2 cup light frozen whipped dessert topping, thawed
1/2 cup fat-free dairy sour cream
1 teaspoon finely shredded orange peel
3 cups fresh or frozen berries (such as raspberries, blackberries, or sliced strawberries), thawed and drained
Unsweetened cocoa powder (optional)
Fresh mint leaves (optional)
1. Bake cookies according to package directions. Set aside to cool
2. Meanwhile, combine the dessert topping and sour cream. Stir in the shredded orange peel. Cover and chill until serving time.
3. To assemble, place a cookie on each of 4 dessert plates. Top each cookie with one-fourth of the berries; top with one-fourth of the sour cream mixture (about 1/4 cup) and another cookie. If desired, sift cocoa powder lightly over each and garnish with mint. Makes 4 servings.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Lightly spray 1 baking sheet with olive oil cooking spray; set aside.
Press dough into a rectangle on a floured surface. Cut into quarters and place on prepared baking sheet with floured fingers. Top with apple butter, cheese, onion, apple, and Canadian bacon. Bake in oven 12 to 17 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. When the oil is hot, add the chicken strips and saute until chicken is just cooked through, about 4 to 5 minutes, depending on the size of the strips. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
Add 2 more tablespoons of olive oil to the skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add the julienned vegetables and cook until crisp tender, about 2 to 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Remove the vegetables from the pan and set aside.
Add 2 more tablespoons of olive oil to the skillet, reduce the heat to medium, and then add the fresh ginger and garlic. Cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the honey and chicken stock and let the sauce reduce slightly. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the cornstarch with 2 tablespoons cold water until dissolved. Add the cornstarch slurry to the sauce and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, or until sauce is thickened.
When the sauce has thickened, return the chicken and vegetables to the skillet and cook until just heated through. To serve, arrange the fried noodles as a base on each plate. Spoon the chicken, vegetables, and sauce over the noodles. Garnish with the cilantro, mint, and pickled ginger.
Arrange oven rack in middle position and top with heavy baking sheet. Preheat oven to 425°F.
On lightly floured surface using lightly floured rolling pin, roll out dough to 13-inch round. Fit into 9-inch pie plate. Trim edge, leaving 1/2-inch overhang, then fold over and crimp decoratively. Chill shell 30 minutes.
Scatter walnuts in shell. In medium bowl, whisk together eggs, maple syrup, butter, vanilla, brown sugar, and salt. Pour mixture into pie shell over nuts.
Transfer pie to baking sheet and bake 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350° F and bake until crust is golden and center is just set, 25 to 30 minutes more.
Transfer pie to rack and cool at least 10 minutes before cutting. Serve warm or at room temperature.
This dinner is perfect for the busy mom. All of these courses can be pulled together in under 30 minutes, leaving plenty of time to spend with the young ones. Put the brownies in the oven when the family sits down to eat, and it will be ready once everyone finishes with the meal.
Corn Muffins with Bacon Bits and Cheddar Cheese
A drizzle extra-virgin olive oil
6 slices bacon, chopped
1 box corn muffin mix plus ingredients according to package directions to make 1 batch muffins
1 rounded teaspoon smoked sweet paprika
3 to 4 tablespoons finely chopped chives
1/3 pound brick sharp yellow Cheddar, chopped into 1/4-inch dice
Preheat oven to muffin mix package directions.
Drizzle a little extra-virgin olive oil into a small skillet and place over medium-high heat. Add bacon to hot pan and crisp, 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from pan and drain on a paper towel. Set aside.
Prepare the muffin mix and muffin tin to package directions. Stir in paprika, chives, chopped cheese and crisp bacon bits. Fill muffin tins and bake until golden brown.
Buffalo Chicken Salad
2 hearts romaine lettuce, chopped
1 cup shredded carrots, available in pouches
2 ribs celery with greens, chopped
1/2 cup ranch dressing
1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles
1 package, 3/4 to 1 pound, chicken tenders, cut into bite size pieces
1 tablespoon vegetable oil, 1 turn of the pan
2 tablespoons butter
Salt and black pepper
1/4 cup hot sauce
Preheat a skillet over medium-high heat.
Combine lettuce, carrots and celery in a salad bowl. Combine ranch dressing and blue cheese crumbles in a small bowl.
Add oil and butter to hot pan with the chicken. Season with salt and pepper and sear for 2 or 3 minutes, then add hot sauce. Reduce heat a little and cook 5 minutes more.
Toss salad with dressing and season with salt and pepper. Top salad with Buffalo chicken and serve.
1 (19.8 ounce) package brownie mix
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1/3 cup white sugar
Prepare the brownie mix as directed by manufacturer. Preheat oven to temperature indicated on box. Grease a 9×13 inch pan.
Spread the brownie batter evenly into the prepared pan. Using an electric mixer, beat together the cream cheese, egg and sugar until smooth. Dollop the cream cheese mixture on top of the brownie batter. Swirl together using a knife or skewer.
Bake according to manufacturer’s instructions. Brownies will be done when a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool in the pan, then cut into bars and serve.
Can’t find a sitter for the kids this Valentine’s Day? This dinner is sure to please both the kids and your significant other.
Spinach Salad with Cranberries & Pine Nuts
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
6 ounce package Baby Spinach Leaves, rinsed
2 tablespoons dried cranberries
3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
Make the dressing ingredients by whisking together in a small bowl the orange juice, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, extra-virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. Set aside.
Put baby spinach in a large bowl. Wait until the last minute to pour dressing over, tossing lightly before serving. Sprinkle with dried cranberries and toasted pine nuts…. absolutely delicious!
Grilled Raspberry Chicken
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup frozen raspberries, thawed (recommended: Dole)
1 cup raspberry vinaigrette (recommended: Annie’s)
1/4 cup raspberry vodka, optional
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh mint leaves
Fresh mint sprigs, for garnish
Fresh raspberries, for garnish
Rinse and pat dry chicken breasts with paper towels. Place in large zip-top bag. Add raspberries, vinaigrette, vodka, if using, and chopped mint. Squeeze air out and seal bag. Gently massage the bag to mash raspberries. Marinate in the refrigerator for 1 to 4 hours.
Preheat grill to medium-high and oil the grates.
Place the chicken breasts on the grill and cook for 4 to 6 minutes per side. Remove from grill and place on serving platter. Garnish with fresh mint sprigs and fresh raspberries.
2 cups chilled heavy cream
4 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
7 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), chopped
Garnish: lightly sweetened whipped cream
Heat 3/4 cup cream in a 1-quart heavy saucepan until hot. Whisk together yolks, sugar, and a pinch of salt in a metal bowl until combined well, then add hot cream in a slow stream, whisking until combined. Transfer mixture to saucepan and cook over moderately low heat, stirring constantly, until it registers 160°F on thermometer. Pour custard through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl and stir in vanilla.
Melt chocolate in a double boiler or a metal bowl set over a pan of simmering water (or in a glass bowl in a microwave at 50 percent power 3 to 5 minutes), stirring frequently. Whisk custard into chocolate until smooth, then cool.
Beat remaining 1 1/4 cups cream in a bowl with an electric mixer until it just holds stiff peaks. Whisk one fourth of cream into chocolate custard to lighten, then fold in remaining cream gently but thoroughly.
Spoon mousse into 8 (6-ounce) stemmed glasses or ramekins and chill, covered, at least 6 hours. Let stand at room temperature about 20 minutes before serving.
4 (5-ounce) skinless chicken breast halves, trimmed of all visible fat and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 teaspoons crushed dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt, optional
1 teaspoon white pepper
4 small Idaho potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
Vegetable Stacks, recipe follows
Place the chicken cubes in a shallow dish. Whisk together the lemon juice, wine, olive oil, oregano, salt, if using, and white pepper. Pour over the chicken. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
Spread the potatoes in a shallow roasting pan. Roast for 15 minutes. Add the chicken with its marinade. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover, stir the potato-chicken mixture, and continue to bake for another 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes before dividing among 4 heated dinner plates. Serve with a Vegetable Stack alongside.
1 large carrot, peeled and sliced thinly on the diagonal
2 small yellow summer squash, trimmed and sliced in thin julienne strips the same length as the snow peas
1/2 pound fresh snow peas, trimmed
Place the carrot slices and squash strips in a vegetable steamer over simmering water. Cover and steam for 2 minutes. Add the snow peas to the steamer and continue to steam for another 1 to 2 minutes, until all the vegetables are crisp-tender.
Divide the snow peas among the 4 dinner plates, arranging closely together lengthwise to form a flat base. Arrange the carrot slices on top of the snow peas and top with the strips of squash in the same direction as the snow peas. Serve hot.
Cookies and Cream Cheesecake
An easy no-bake cheesecake recipe.
24 chocolate sandwich cookies (oreos), finely crumbled, about 2 cups
6 tablespoons margarine, room temperature
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/4 cup cold water
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup milk
1 cup heavy cream, whipped
coarsely crumbled chocolate sandwich cookies (Oreos), about 1 to 1 1/2 cups
Combine fine cookie crumbs and soft margarine; press into bottom of 9-inch springform pan. In a saucepan, soften gelatin in cold water; stir over low heat until dissolved. In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese and sugar, mixing at medium speed of an electric hand-held mixer until well blended, Gradually add gelatin mixture and milk, mixing until well blended. Chill until mixture is thickened but not set; fold in whipped cream. Reserve 1 1/2 cup cream cheese mixture; pour remaining cream cheese mixture over crust. Top with coarsely crumbled cookies then remaining cream cheese mixture. Chill until firm.