Arroz con Pollo

Arroz Con Pollo in a Dutch Oven

Ingredients

For chicken:

2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken thighs
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
½ teaspoon dried Greek oregano

For dish:
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ stick unsalted butter
1 medium onion, small dice
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups long grain rice like Mahatma brand
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 cups low sodium chicken broth
1-2 tablespoons capers, rinsed
½ cup pitted green olives
½ cup roasted red pepper strips

Salt and pepper to taste

Optional garnish: chopped cilantro or parsley leaves

Preparation

Put chicken thighs in a nonreactive bowl and season with a pinch of salt, a grind or two of black pepper and the olive oil, red wine vinegar and oregano. Let marinate while you’re organizing the rest of your ingredients, no more than half an hour.

Melt butter with olive oil in a Dutch oven or large lid pot then sauté onion over medium heat until it begins to soften. Add the garlic and cook just until you can smell its characteristic aroma and it turns opaque. Add the rice and stir well so the grains are coated with the fat. Let it sauté for a minute. Add the tomato paste and the broth. Stir well to mix. Add the remaining condiments. Taste the liquid. It should have a piquancy from the capers and olives. Add salt now if you think you need it.

Nestle the chicken thighs into the rice, adding any reserved marinade or juices. Bring the liquid to a simmer, cover the pot and cook either on top of the stove over low heat or in a 350 degree oven for about 40 minutes or until rice has absorbed all the liquid and chicken is cooked through. Taste for seasoning.

Garnish with chopped cilantro or parsley leaves.

Serves 4-6.

Lemon Chardonnay Chicken

This is an easy weeknight dinner recipe that is also pretty enough to serve guests at a small casual dinner party. The citrus sauce is the perfect combination of savory and sweet. The leftovers (if you have any) are great for lunch the next day too! Enjoy!

Serves 3-4

Ingredients

4-6 boneless chicken breast cutlets (see notes)

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup Chardonnay (or you can use white cooking wine)

1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

6 green onions (white and half of green section, chopped)

4-6 cloves of garlic, pressed or finely chopped

6-8 Tablespoons butter (divided)

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Preparation

For Chicken:

Pat the chicken with a paper towel to dry.  Season with salt and pepper as desired.

Lightly flour chicken and place into a large frying pan with approximately 3-4 T. butter melted in the pan and fry until golden brown about 5 minutes per side.  Be careful not to burn the butter.  Chicken will not be fully cooked.  Place chicken in a warm oven while you make the sauce.

For Sauce:

Add 3-4 T butter to pan. Saute the onions and garlic in the butter on low heat.  Add wine and lemon juice.  Simmer for about 5 minutes.  Add the chicken to the sauce, cover and simmer for 5-10 minutes more or until fully cooked.   Serve over rice. Yummy!

Notes:  

Chicken – you can purchase chicken cutlets or chicken breast fillets in your local grocery store or you can cut them yourself but slicing a boneless chicken breast in half to form thin patties.

Flouring Chicken – Place about 1/4-1/2 cup flour in a shallow baking dish.  Dip and flip the chicken fillets into the flour to lightly cover them before cooking. This ensures that chicken stays both moist and tender.

Caprese Chicken

Yield: 4 servings

recipe note: Balsamic vinegar comes in many forms. I recommend a higher quality one to get the fullest flavor. Many balsamic vinegars found in grocery stores are very thin – like water. Higher quality ones often found in specialty shops are aged longer and are slightly thicker (not as thick as balsamic glaze, but somewhere in the middle of the two). 41-Olive offers many choices.

ingredients:

4-6 skinless boneless chicken thighs (or breasts if you prefer)
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved (I mix it up with the colorful heirloom variety)
10 large basil leaves, finely chopped
4-6 oz fresh buffalo mozzarella, sliced in 1/4-1/2 inch thick slices
balsamic vinegar, to taste (My newest favorite is BlackCherry from 41-Olive)

directions:

Salt and pepper both sides of the chicken thighs or breasts and set aside.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add chicken, cover pan, and cook for about 10 minutes. Flip chicken breasts and continue cooking until the chicken is cooked thoroughly (or has reached an internal temp of 165°F).

While chicken is cooking, in a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add garlic and cook for about 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add tomatoes and continue sautéing until tomatoes skin starts to soften/wrinkle, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in basil. Set aside.

Once chicken has reached desired doneness, top each chicken piece with 1-2 slices of mozzarella (depending on how thick you sliced it). Pour tomato mixture on top. Cover pan with lid once more and let the mozzarella melt, about 1-2 minutes.

Lastly, drizzle with a splash of balsamic vinegar and serve immediately.

30-Minute Coconut Curry Chicken

Super Simple and Super yummy! This recipe mimics the traditional Thai curry but without so many hard to find ingredients. It’s so easy that it is perfect for a weekday meal.

Ingredients:

10 oz. of Organic Jasmine Rice (found in a 3-pack in the freezer section of many grocery stores like Trader Joe’s)

13.5 oz. can coconut milk

1 Tbsp. curry powder

2 Tbsp. fish sauce

2 oz. butter or ghee

1 lb. skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized chunks

2 bay leaves

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro plus four sprigs

1-2 mini red peppers, sliced (optional for garnish)

Procedure:

  1. Place a large frying pan over medium heat and add coconut milk and curry powder. Stir until combined, then add the fish sauce and butter. Stir until the butter is melted.
  2. Add the chicken and bay leaves. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. After the chicken has simmered for 10 minutes, remove the lid and simmer for an additional 15 minutes until the liquid had reduced by 50% and the chicken is cooked through (no longer pink in the middle).
  4. Stir in the fresh cilantro and remove pan from heat.
  5. Pop the bag of rice in the microwave for 3 minutes or as directed on the package.
  6. To assemble, add 3/4 cup of the cauliflower rice and 1/2 cup of the curry mixture to individual bowls and place a fresh cilantro sprig on top.

Italian Sausage Soup

As the weather starts to change, so does my cooking.  Warm hearty soups replace summer’s repertoire of grilled and barbecued fare.  This cozy soup recipe will warm you up this fall.  It’s both satisfying and comforting.

Italian Sausage Soup

Yield: 6-8 servings

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour and 20 minutes

Ingredients

1 lb. Italian sausage – mild or spicy (broken up out of skin or sliced with skin on)
1 large onion (cut into ½ inch dice)
4 cloves minced garlic (or more if you like)
1-16 oz. can crushed Italian tomatoes (or plain crushed tomatoes with a few shakes of Italian seasonings)
32 oz. chicken broth (Homemade if you can.  See my favorite recipe here)
2 large (or 3-4 medium) zucchini (cut into a ½ inch dice)
2 T fresh basil  (Use just 1 T if using dried Basil)
1/4 cup pasta noodles (like elbow macaroni)
salt and pepper to taste

Preparation

1.  Brown sausage with onion and garlic in a medium frying pan (drain fat).
2.  In a large pot, add crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, zucchini, basil, and pasta noodles.
3.  Add sausage, onion and garlic mixture to the pot.
4.  Simmer slowly for 1 hour.  Enjoy!

Psst!  Soup can be frozen for up to 2 months and then reheated for a quick weekday meal.

Favorite Salsa Verde Chicken

This 30-Minute One-Pan Salsa Verde Chicken is perfect for a busy weeknight.  It’s healthy, tasty, and super easy.

This Salsa Verde Chicken needs only a few basic ingredients and a casserole dish.

I always keep a jar of my favorite salsa verde from Sprouts in my pantry.  Trader Joe’s has a yummy version too, but I prefer the Sprouts version as it has a little more kick (from Jalapenos).

You can use either bone-in chicken thighs (my favorite) or boneless skinless chicken thighs works too.

Perfect over rice, tortillas, or chips.

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PREP TIME 10 minutes
COOK TIME 20-40 minutes
TOTAL TIME 30-40 minutes
Serves: 4
INGREDIENTS
  • 2 lbs.  chicken thighs (bone in or skinless & boneless)
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin’
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1 jar (16oz) salsa verde
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • Garnish: fresh cilantro leaves and lime wedges
DIRECTIONS
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F
  2. Wash and chop the garlic, onion and red pepper.
  3. Wash and towel dry the chicken and then season with salt, pepper, cumin and oregano. Lightly brush the top of each piece with olive oil and sprinkle with the minced garlic. Set aside.
  4. Pour the jar of salsa verde in a casserole dish.
  5. Place the chicken pieces in the casserole dish next and add the onion and peppers to the dish and position around the chicken pieces.
  6. Roast for 20-40 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in center. (Larger chicken pieces will take longer).  Do not overcook.
  7. Serve over rice (or with tortillas) and garnish with cilantro and lime.

Vince’s Tuscan Chicken

2Vince’s Tuscan Chicken

Serves 6

INGREDIENTS
5-6 small chicken breasts or chicken thighs (boneless)
3-5 shallots, chopped
3 large tomatoes, chopped
2-3 T. oregano
1 tsp salt and
½ tsp pepper
½ cup vermouth
olive oil

DIRECTIONS
1. Lightly salt the chicken pieces if desired.  Brown chicken in olive oil for 15-20 minutes on medium heat (1/2 hour if frozen).
Remove from oil and set aside.
2. Add chopped shallots to the frying pan and cook until tender (3-5 minutes).
3. Add chopped tomatoes, oregano, vermouth and salt and pepper.

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4.  Replace chicken in mixture and cook for about 20 minutes more or until chicken done (no longer pink inside).
5.  Serve over bed of white rice, brown rice or fettuccine.

PSST!  Even though my recipe calls for boneless chicken, you can easily make it with the bone in version.  You just need to adjust the cooking time a little longer.  You want to test to make sure the juices run clear and that the meat is no longer pink.

IMG_8898

Yum Yum Lobster Tails

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This was my first time making lobster tails and it DEFINITELY  wont be my last. It is easy peasy and oh so yummy. You can make these for a special occasion or to make an ordinary occasion special.

BAKED LOBSTER TAILS WITH GARLIC BUTTER

INGREDIENTS

4 lobster tails
5 cloves garlic, minced
¼ c. grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
4 tbsp. Butter

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, mix together garlic, Parmesan, Italian seasoning, and melted butter and season with salt.
2. Using kitchen scissors, cut the the clear skin off the lobster and brush the lobster tails with the garlic butter seasoning.

3. Place the lobster tails on a baking sheet lined with parchment and bake the lobster tails for 15 minutes.  Enjoy!

Spicy Mexican White Chicken Chili

mexican chicken chiliGrowing up as a kid, the definition of chili was both a  small pepper with a very hot flavor and a spicy stew of ground beef usually with beans too. Both meant yummy goodness.  Now chili in our family seems to be synonymous with Monday Night Football.  Our version is a chicken variety with savory mexican spices.  It’s always a hit, even when our team doesn’t win.

Spicy Mexican White Chicken Chili

Ingredients:

2-3 cups shredded chicken (I use rotisserie chicken from the deli section at Sprouts)
2 (15 ounce) cans great northern beans or 2 (15 ounce) cans navy beans
2 cups roasted corn (I use frozen from Trader Joe’s)
1-2 ounces taco seasoning mix (I use part of the envelope from Trader Joe’s)
1 (7 1/2 ounce) can of chopped green chilies (use less if you like a milder chili)
1 (10 3/4 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup
1 (14 ounce) can low sodium chicken broth

TOPPINGS

1/2 cup sour cream
chopped green onion (optional)
Monterey jack cheese (optional)

Directions:

Pour beans, corn and chicken in large pot.

In a medium bowl, combine taco seasoning, chiles, condensed soup, and chicken broth.

Pour over top of ingredients and stir together over medium heat.

Simmer for 15-30 minutes.

Serve topped with green onions, sour cream, and jack cheese, if desired.

Chicken Cacciatore with a Southern Twist

Chicken Cacciatore with a Southern Twist

Makes: 3 Servings
Calories: About 450 Per Serving
Cooking Time: 35 to 45 minutes

Chicken Cacciatorie-in a serving bowl

Ingredients

  • 3 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs
  • ¾ Cup Yellow Grits
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper
  • 1 Tomato
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • 1 Bunch Basil
  • 2 Tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Capers
  • 2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 1 Tablespoon Molasses
  • 1 Tablespoon Southern Cacciatore Spice Blend (Smoked Sweet Paprika, Dried Parsley, Dried Oregano, Ancho Chile Powder, Garlic Powder & Cayenne Pepper)

Instructions

cheicken Cacciatore-chopped ingredients

1. Prepare the ingredients:

Wash and dry the fresh produce. Core and  dice tomato.  Cut out and discard the stem, ribs and seeds of the bell pepper; medium dice. Peel and dice the onion. Pick the basil leaves off the stems; discard the stems.

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