Archive - May 2015

Roasted Chicken and Vegetables

This could be a one pot dish if I had a oven safe pan big enough to fit all the chicken I wanted to make for this week. If you only make this with four thighs, it can totally be done and you don’t have to use a casserole dish. I also learned from my Chicken Stroganoff recipe that everything is better with wine. This is one of those dishes. You can certainly omit it, but it gives it a nice boost.

Roasted Chicken and Vegetables
8 chicken thighs, skin on
Salt and pepper
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
1 small yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 smal red onion, thinly sliced
4 cloves of garlic, diced
1 can of artichoke hearts
1 cup white wine
16 oz baby spinach

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1. Heat olive oil in a large pan, salt and pepper both sides of chicken and place skin down in hot oil. Brown both sides and set aside.

2. Add carrots, onions, garlic, artichoke hearts into hot pan. Cook until slightly browning. Add white wine and cook for 6-7 minutes until wine cooks off a bit. Ensure the veggies don’t get too tender, they’re going to finish off in the oven.

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3. Add spinach to pan and cook until slightly wilted.

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4. Place chicken on the bottom of a casserole dish, pour vegetables on top. Cook in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes.

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5. Check to makes sure that the chicken temperature reaches 165 degrees before serving.

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BBQ Chicken, Kale, and Sweet Potatoes

We went to Napa on Saturday with our friends Laura and Matt who were visiting from Los Angeles this weekend. Our first stop was Judd’s Hill Winery and one of their tastings was a wine and BBQ sauce pairing. Unconventional? Perhaps. Delicious? Absolutely! The experience we had there was wonderful and the sommelier was very knowledgeable and answered all our questions. We also talked about food as much as we talked about wine — which made us all very happy and hungry. Jason and I couldn’t help but add a bottle of the BBQ sauce to our purchase. It was so tasty that I then had to cook with it this weekend. I’m sure any BBQ sauce will do here, but try using one that has some nice balance of heat and sweet.

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Oven BBQ Chicken 
4 pieces of chicken, bone in
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 cups BBQ sauce of your choice
Salt and pepper

1. Cut excess fat off chicken, salt and pepper both sides. Heat oil in a frying pan. Brown chicken on both sides.

2. Place chicken on a wire rack on top of a cookie sheet lined with tin foil. Cook in 375 degree oven for 20 minutes. Take out of the oven, and baste both sides with BBQ sauce. Put back in oven for 15 minutes. Take the chicken out a second time and baste with sauce. Place back in oven for afinal 15 minutes, when you take it back out, put on some more sauce! Check the internal temperature to make sure that it’s reached 165 degrees.

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BBQ Kale
2 bunches of kale
Salt and pepper
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoons olive oil

1. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Cook on the grill until lightly crisped. Approximately 2-3 minutes on each side if the flame is on low.

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Sweet and Spicy Sweet Potatoes 
4 sweet potatoes
4 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cayenne
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground clove

1. Boil potatoes for 20 minutes, or until just tender. Be careful not to over cook. The potatoes still need to keep their shape while being grilled. Place potatoes in cold water to prevent further cooking. Remove skins and cut potatoes into friends (approximately 8 per potato).

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2. Mix spices together in a small bowl. Place cut potatoes in a large bowl and mix with oil and spices.

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3. Cook potatoes on the grill until lightly charred.

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4. Enjoy everything together!

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Homemade Granola

I’ve been buying granola at the farmers market the past few months. It’s a nice addition to my work-breakfast routine of greek yogurt and berries. The only downfall is that it’s fairly expensive and a little too sweet sometimes so I decided to make it at home this week! This is a great base recipe for you to add any nuts, dried fruit, sweetener, or oil. Mixing and matching encouraged.

Homemade Granola
3 cups gluten free oats
3 Tablespoons flax seed meal
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
3 Tablespoons agave nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 Tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup almond slivers

1. Mix oats, flax seed, and cinnamon in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mis the agave nectar, vanilla, and oil. Combine the two until all of the ingredients become moist. Add in the seeds and almonds.

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2. Spread granola mixture on a cookie sheet in a thin layer.

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3. Cook in a 300 degree oven for 20 minutes until golden brown, tossing every few minutes, ensuring the granola doesn’t burn or stick.

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4. Enjoy with greek yogurt and berries!

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Chicken Stroganoff

Just like the pizzagaina was reminiscent of home, this recipe is too. My mom used to make chicken stroganoff all the time. It was one of the first recipes I knew how to cook. This is a lighter take on it, but was a nice way to feel closer to family. This is definitely good but next time I plan to add some white wine, possibly instead of the chicken stock — mostly because wine makes everything better.

Chicken Stroganoff
4 chicken breasts, cut into slivers
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 large onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
3 cups crimini mushrooms, sliced
1 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons corn starch
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/4 cup sour cream

1. Cut the chicken into slivers and toss in a bowl with the spices. In a dutch oven, heat the oil and place in the seasoned chicken, cooking for a few minutes on both sides. Just enough to brown the chicken, not fully cook it. Be careful not to crowd the chicken, I did this in three batches. Once all the chicken has been browned, remove from pan and set aside.DSC_0119b

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2. Leave all the good brown bits in the dutch oven. Add a little more oil if you need it and bring to temperature, then add the onions and garlic. Cook and stir until they become translucent. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook down.

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3. Once the mushrooms have begun to brown, make a small area in the middle and add the butter. Once melted, add in the corn starch and stir. This will help thicken the sauce. Stir the mushrooms into the butter/starch and then add the Worcestershire sauce and chicken stock.

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4. Add the chicken and cook for about 7 minutes until cooked through. Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream.

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5. Serve with pasta (usually egg noodles, but I can’t find those in GF) and vegetable of your choosing!

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Spinach Hummus

The Yogurt and Dill Dip really is tasty with the chopped veggies but for some reason the second batch I made didn’t have the same consistency as the first — I think I added a bit too much lemon so it wasn’t quite perfect. Instead of trying another time I decided to make something a little different for this week. The only constructive criticism I received  — use more garlic next time. What can I say, I married an Italian man.

Spinach Hummus
2 1/2 cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
3 cups raw spinach
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/3 cup tahini
2 large garlic cloves
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup cilantro leaves

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1. Combine all ingredients in food processor and turn on until the hummus is smooth.

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2. If it seems to be too thick and isn’t processing as well as you’d hoped, it probably means you forgot the lime juice. Whoops! Put in some fresh lime juice and continue pulsing until the right consistency.

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3. Devour!

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