Monday, February 28, 2011

Chicken a meatloaf?!

I was leary on making this because hubby hates meatloaf. Hates it with a passion, and when I first mentioned this recipe he said "don't even bother making it, i will hate it."
HAHAH to him cause he LOVED IT. and told me to make it again! Give it a whirl, you will like it.

Chicken Parm Meatloaf

1 lb ground chicken (ground turkey can be substituted)
1 egg
1/4 breadcrumbs
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 small onion, grated
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup pasta sauce (homemade or store bought)
1/2 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
minced parsley for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a loaf pan with cooking spray, set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the ground chicken, egg, breadcrumbs, thyme, oregano, basil, garlic, onion, salt, pepper and Parmesan cheese. To not over handle the mixture otherwise it will get tough. Place the mixture in the greased loaf pan and form into a loaf. Top the meatloaf with pasta sauce.

Place filled loaf pan on a baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes. Remove the meatloaf from the oven and sprinkle the top with the remaining shredded cheese. Place the meatloaf back in the oven and bake until the cheese is melted.

Remove the meatloaf from the oven and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving/slicing. Garnish with parsley if desired.

* To make ahead/freezer meal - Prepare the meatloaf mixture as directed and place in a disposable loaf pan. Cover and freeze. When ready to prepare and serve, defrost the meatloaf completely and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Top with pasta sauce and place filled loaf pan on a baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven for 40-45 minutes. Remove the meatloaf from the oven and sprinkle the top with the remaining shredded cheese. Place the meatloaf back in the oven and bake until the cheese is melted. Remove the meatloaf from the oven and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving/slicing. Garnish with parsley if desired.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Grilled Polenta with Spicy Steak

I have never been so happy to have an indoor grill.
This was awesome. and light. and just plain good!
From Cooking Light Magazine

Grilled Polenta with Spicy Steak

* 4 teaspoons canola oil, divided
* 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
* 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
* 1/2 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
* 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1 (1-pound) flank steak, trimmed
* 1 (18-ounce) tube of polenta, cut into 8 slices
* 1 ripe peeled avocado, sliced
* 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
* 1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled queso fresco
* 1/2 cup refrigerated fresh salsa
* Lime wedges (optional)


1. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Combine 1 teaspoon oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, cumin, chile powder, and pepper; rub evenly over steak. Add steak to pan; cook 6 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Remove steak from pan; let stand 5 minutes. Cut steak diagonally across grain into thin slices.

2. While steak rests, brush remaining 1 tablespoon oil over both sides of polenta slices; sprinkle evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt. Add polenta to pan; cook 3 minutes on each side or until browned. Arrange 2 polenta slices on each of 4 plates; divide avocado evenly among servings. Top each serving with about 3 ounces steak, 2 tablespoons cilantro leaves, 2 tablespoons queso fresco, and 2 tablespoons salsa. Serve with lime wedges, if desired.

Nutritional Information
Fat:19.2g (sat 4.6g,mono 10.1g,poly 2.6g)

Pimiento Cheese Chicken


that's all you need to know. Oh, and that it's from Cooking Light Magazine.

Pimiento Cheese Chicken
* 1 slice applewood-smoked bacon
* 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
* 2 tablespoons minced green onions
* 1 1/2 tablespoons diced pimientos
* 1 tablespoon canola mayonnaise
* 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
* 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
* 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
* 4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
* 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
* 1 tablespoon canola oil


1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Cook bacon in a large ovenproof skillet until crisp. Remove bacon, reserving drippings in pan; crumble bacon. Combine bacon, next 6 ingredients, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cut a 1-inch-wide slit into the thick end of each breast half; carefully cut down to the center of chicken to form a deep pocket. Divide cheese mixture evenly among pockets. Secure with wooden picks. Sprinkle chicken with 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper.

3. Heat pan over medium-high heat. Add oil to drippings. Add chicken to pan; saute 4 minutes. Turn chicken over. Bake at 350° for 12 minutes; let stand for 5 minutes.

Nutritional Information
Fat:16g (sat 5.8g,mono 6.1g,poly 2.3g)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Menu plan for the week

Well since we failed with the Cheese Pimento Chicken last week, we put it on for this week again.

We are making all new recipes this week! YAY! I love when the whole week is filled with new recipes.

Monday-Paul's making the Pimento Cheese Chicken with Rosemary Potatoes

Tuesday-Spicy Steak with Rice

Wednesday-Chicken Cutlets with Spaghetti and homemade sauce

Thursday-Paul's making Broiled tenderloin with potatoes

Friday-Chicken Parm Meatloaf with mashed potatoes

Will blog with pics and recipes as we make them.

Friday, February 18, 2011

TGIF...or is it??

It's amazing outside today. Down right spring like. I should be thrilled it's Friday. But I'm not.
'Cause my house is a flipping disaster area!! I swear FEMA is going to be knocking on my door soon. We've been so busy we haven't had the time to just be home and clean. Every weekend has been something lately, no time for just us. Well, I'm sad to say, this weekend is it.
I have 6 loads of laundry to iron, fold, and put away.
My office is a hot mess and needs to be organized.
The Valentine decor needs to come down and be put away and the St. Patty's Day needs to come out. (and yes I know I do this part to myself, but I can't help but be festive. If you met my mother you would know why I am like this.)
The kitchen needs a good scrubbing.
The bathroom needs a power washing.
the floors, the carpets, the windows, the dog beds, etc, etc, etc.

Now you see why I am not thrilled?
I even thought maybe I could coax my husband into letting me hire someone just this once to clean. Even the promise of sexual favors didn't work.

But WAHOO for it being 55 outside today.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

God damn, I love my crock pot.

So we switched up the days on our menu planning. This was suppose to be for tomorrow, but I was home sick today. The last time I made this recipe it wasn't as flavorful as I wanted, so today i put in a cup and a half of white wine and added potatoes to the mix as well.
That was like a party in my mouth!
here's a link to the recipe, Thank you to Erin from City Mouse in a Country House for the recipe!

And help me welcome my cousin to the blogosphere! She got married yesterday and is ready to blog recipes and try new ones out. Hi Mrs. Herald!!

A Valentine's Feast, with a slight change of plans...

Paul was going to make the Pimento Cheese Stuffed Chicken, but then realized he bought the chicken breasts too instead of him leaving to go back to the store, i told him to just take a different recipe from the week we had planned out and use that. So that's what he did, and he did it well. It was really good. I can't even explain how strange it was to lay on the couch with "What Not To Wear" playing while he cooked and made the house smell divine. A strange feeling, but not one that I wouldn't mind again.
We also managed to grab a Boston Creme Pie while at the grocery store and had that for dessert. it was delicious! Anyway, on to the recipe! Courtesy of Cooking Light Magazine.

Sautéed Chicken with Sage Browned Butter
4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Cooking spray
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons butter
2 sage sprigs
1 tablespoon minced shallots
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Fresh sage leaves (optional)
1. Place each breast half between 2 sheets of plastic wrap; pound to 1/4-inch thickness. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat; coat with cooking spray. Place flour in a shallow dish; dredge chicken in flour. Add chicken to pan; sauté for 4 minutes on each side or until done. Remove chicken from pan.

2. Add butter and sage sprigs to pan; cook over medium heat until butter browns. Discard sage. Add shallots and thyme; cook for 30 seconds. Add lemon juice; cook for 30 seconds. Serve with chicken. Garnish with sage leaves, if desired.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 326
Fat: 11.1g
Protein: 41.1g
Carbohydrate: 13.1g
Fiber: 0.5g
Cholesterol: 122mg
Iron: 2mg
Sodium: 320mg
Calcium: 26mg

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Menu plan for the week

I'm using what I got this week!
Grocery Bill=$40.11. Now that's what i'm talking about.

Monday-Paul's Valentine's gift to me! He's pick for the evening. Stuffed Pimento Cheese Chicken. We'll see about this one. It's from Cooking Light Magazine and they have yet to fail me, but something about this recipe makes me nervous.

Wednesday-Pot Roast

Thursday-New Recipe-Sauteed Chicken with Sage Brown Butter. This is also from Cooking Light.

Friday-We are busting out the pizza oven for some pizza with whatever is on hand.

Saturday-Date night out! :)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Steak and Potatoes

Once again, a couple new recipes from the Food Network Magazine this month.
SO good.

Rosemary Chips
Toss 1 1/2 pounds thinly sliced russet potatoes with 2 teaspoons chopped rosemary, 1 grated garlic clove, 3 tablespoons olive oil, 3/4 teaspoon salt and a pinch of cayenne. Spread on a baking sheet; roast in a 500 degrees F oven until golden, about 20 minutes. Flip the potatoes and cook until golden and crisp, 8 more minutes. Season with salt.

Balsamic Steak with Radicchio
4 6-ounce beef eye round steaks
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 to 2 teaspoons sugar, plus a pinch
1 clove garlic, sliced
2 heads radicchio, torn into pieces
1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced, plus more for topping
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (preferably aged)
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, sliced, plus leaves for topping
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season the steaks with salt and pepper. When the pan is hot, add 1 tablespoon butter, swirling the pan to coat. Add the steaks, sprinkle them with a pinch of sugar, and sear until golden brown on the bottom, about 4 minutes. Flip and cook until golden on the other side, 2 more minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and tent with foil.

Reduce the heat to medium and add 1 tablespoon butter to the skillet. Add the garlic and cook 20 seconds. Add the radicchio in batches, tossing until wilted. Sprinkle with 1 to 2 teaspoons sugar and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and vinegar and cook until the vinegar evaporates slightly, about 1 minute. Add the broth and cook until the radicchio is tender, about 2 minutes. Stir in the basil. Transfer the radicchio to plates using tongs. Continue cooking the sauce until it thickens slightly, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter.

Thinly slice the steak and add to the plates. Drizzle with the sauce and top with more sun-dried tomatoes and basil.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Hubby made dinner!

This never happens. I mean, ok he sometimes makes the occasional tacos or grilled cheese, but a full blown dinner with a RECIPE....never.
When we bought our new Nissan Rogue I told him we had to cut back on the "Patty is sick of cooking lets order out" nights, and he would have to help me out. Well, he stuck to his word and made an amazing meal this week.
We got the new Food Network Magazine and the cover recipe looked outstanding. So Paul took it and made it!
The house smelled amazing. The food deslicious. And my husband totally proud of himself.

Pea-Prosciutto Sauce
we served over 4 cheese raviolis.

Cook 4 ounces chopped prosciutto in a skillet with 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat until crisp, 4 minutes. Stir in 3 sliced garlic cloves and 1 tablespoon tomato paste; cook 1 minute. Ladle in 1 cup pasta-cooking water and simmer until reduced by half, 4 minutes. Add 1/4 cup heavy cream and simmer until thickened, 3 minutes. Toss with 1 pound cooked ravioli, 1 cup blanched frozen peas and some chopped parsley. Top with grated parmesan.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Ok Uterus, I hear you!

We got to hang out with a couple of our best friends last night, and their little munchkin. He's so darn cute, that I swear my uterus was screaming for me to pay attention and get on it. I know I need to before its too late, but why does it freak me out so much? Is this normal??
We spoke last night about trying together so our kiddos would have a best bud, and I'm dying for my own, but the thought of me having a baby
Maybe this all has to do with the fact that I turn *gulp* 30 next month. I always pictured myself in a house with a white picket fence and 2 kids by 30. Instead I'm in an apartment, with a husband and 2 crazy dogs, and I've been laid off twice since graduating college. I quite sure I'm not the only one who has had setbacks nowadays.

I just needed to get that out.

The sun is shining today, so I'm going to take that as a good sign of a good day to come.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Oh dear lord in heaven!

That dinner was amazing.
I'm not sure why i hadn't made this before, but I am so glad i remembered the recipe when I went grocery shopping.

Crispy Ranch Chicken
2 Cup(s) Rice Krispies ( i used panko breadcrumbs instead)
1/2 Cup(s) grated Parmesan cheese
1 Package(s) Ranch dressing mix
2 beaten egg whites
8 chicken thighs, boneless (i used chicken breasts instead)
Preheat oven to 350. Spray a large baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.

Combine rice cereal, Parmesan cheese, and ranch salad dressing mix in a large bowl.

Place beaten egg whites in a medium bowl. Dip each chicken thigh into the egg whites and then in the cereal mixture to coat evenly.

Arrange the coated chicken on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until golden and juices run clear when chicken is pierced with a knife, 20-25 minutes. Serve hot.

I actually pounded out the chicken breasts and then cooked them in a frying pan with a little olive oil. Took only 10 min. that way, and they were so juicy.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Menu planning for Sunday's big game.

Even though my boys the Pats (don't hate) aren't in the Superbowl, it doesn't make it any less exciting! Here are some ideas of making low-cal snacks for the game. The big boys won't even know they are low fat :)

Date, Walnut and Blue Cheese Ball

Serving Size 2 tablespoons
* 1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled blue cheese
* 1 tablespoon nonfat buttermilk
* 5 ounces fat-free cream cheese, softened
* 3 ounces 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
* 3 tablespoons minced pitted Medjool dates (2 to 3 dates)
* 1 tablespoon minced shallots
* 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
* 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
* 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
* 2 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped walnuts, toasted


1. Place first 4 ingredients in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed 2 minutes or until smooth and creamy. Add dates, shallots, lemon rind, salt, and pepper; beat at medium speed until well blended, scraping sides of bowl as necessary.

2. Spoon cheese mixture onto a large sheet of plastic wrap. Form into a ball, using a rubber spatula. Wrap cheese ball in plastic wrap; chill overnight.

3. Combine parsley and walnuts in a shallow dish. Unwrap cheese ball; gently roll in nut mixture, coating well. Place on a serving plate. Serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Nutritional Information
Fat:4.8g (sat 2.6g,mono 1.2g,poly 0.7g)

Chipotle Lime Crab Crisps

Servings size 3 crisps
* 48 baked tortilla chips
* 1/2 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
* 1 teaspoon chopped canned chipotle chile in adobo sauce
* 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
* 3/4 pound lump crabmeat, shell pieces removed
* 1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
* 2 tablespoons finely chopped peeled jicama
* 2 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions
* 2 tablespoons finely chopped red bell pepper
* 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
* 1 tablespoon finely chopped celery
* 1 medium avocado, peeled and diced


Preheat oven to 350°.

Arrange tortilla chips in a single layer on 2 baking sheets.

Combine mayonnaise, chile, and juice, stirring with a whisk.

Combine crab and next 6 ingredients (through celery) in a medium bowl. Add mayonnaise mixture, stirring until well combined. Spoon about 1 tablespoon crab mixture onto each chip. Bake at 350° for 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated; top the chips evenly with avocado.

Nutritional Information
Calories:85 (35% from fat)
Fat:3.3g (sat 0.6g,mono 1.5g,poly 0.8g)

Parmesan Zucchini Sticks with Smoky Roasted Romesco Sauce

Serving Size 6 sticks and 1/4 cup of sauce
* Sauce:
* 3 medium red bell peppers
* 2 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise
* 1/2 cup (1/2-inch) cubed French bread baguette, crusts removed
* 1 1/2 tablespoons smoked almonds
* 1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
* 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
* 1/4 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika
* 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
* 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
* 1 large garlic clove
* Zucchini:
* 3 large zucchini (about 1 1/2 pounds)
* 1 cup dry breadcrumbs
* 1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
* 1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1/2 cup egg substitute
* Cooking spray


1. Preheat broiler.

2. To prepare sauce, cut bell peppers in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membranes. Place bell pepper halves and tomatoes, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten bell peppers with hand. Broil 10 minutes or until blackened. Place in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Let stand 15 minutes. Peel and coarsely chop, reserving any liquid.

3. Combine bell peppers, reserved liquid, tomatoes, and next 8 ingredients (through garlic) in a blender or food processor; process until smooth.

4. Preheat oven to 400°.

5. To prepare zucchini, cut 1 zucchini in half crosswise; cut each half lengthwise into 8 wedges. Repeat procedure with remaining zucchini. Combine breadcrumbs, panko, cheese, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and black pepper in a shallow dish. Dip zucchini in egg substitute; dredge in breadcrumb mixture. Place zucchini on a wire rack coated with cooking spray. Lightly coat zucchini with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately with sauce.

Nutritional Information
Calories:170 (30% from fat)
Fat:5.6g (sat 1.3g,mono 2.5g,poly 1.3g)

Seared Beef Tenderloin Mini Sandwiches with Mustard-Horseradish Sauce

Serving Size 1 open face sandwich
* 2/3 cup fat-free sour cream
* 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
* 2 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon
* 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
* 1 (1 1/2-pound) beef tenderloin, trimmed
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* Cooking spray
* 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
* 3 cups trimmed watercress (about 1 bunch)
* 1 (8-ounce) French bread baguette, cut diagonally into 16 slices
* 2 tablespoons capers
* 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shaved fresh Parmesan cheese


Combine first 4 ingredients, stirring well with a whisk. Cover and chill.

Secure beef at 2-inch intervals with twine. Sprinkle beef with pepper. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add beef to pan; cook 15 minutes or until desired degree of doneness, turning frequently. Let stand 15 minutes. Cut into 16 slices. Sprinkle with juice.

Arrange watercress evenly on bread slices. Place 1 beef slice and about 1 tablespoon chilled sauce over each bread slice. Arrange capers and cheese evenly over sauce.

Nutritional Information
Calories:136 (33% from fat)
Fat:5g (sat 1.8g,mono 1.5g,poly 0.3g)

Garlic Flatbreads with Smoked Mozzarella and Tomato Vinaigrette

Serving Size 1 wedge (makes 12)
* Flatbreads:
* 1/4 cup whole wheat flour (about 1 ounce)
* 1 cup warm water (100° to 110°), divided
* 1 package dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
* 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided (about 10 ounces)
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* Cooking spray
* 1 teaspoon cornmeal
* 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
* Topping:
* 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
* 2 tablespoons extravirgin olive oil
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1 garlic clove, minced
* 3/4 cup halved red cherry tomatoes (about 4 ounces)
* 3/4 cup halved yellow cherry tomatoes (about 4 ounces)
* 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded smoked mozzarella cheese
* 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil


To prepare flatbreads, lightly spoon whole wheat flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup water, and yeast in a bowl; let stand 10 minutes.

Lightly spoon all-purpose flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and remaining 3/4 cup water in a large bowl. Add yeast mixture, and stir until a dough forms. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes); add enough of remaining 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel sticky). Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in size. (Gently press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.)

Preheat oven to 450°.

Punch dough down; cover and let rest 5 minutes. Divide dough in half. Roll each half into a 9-inch circle on a lightly floured surface; place on baking sheets sprinkled with cornmeal. Lightly coat dough with cooking spray. Sprinkle dough evenly with sliced garlic; press garlic into dough using fingertips. Bake at 450° for 10 minutes or until crisp and garlic begins to brown. Remove flatbreads from oven; cool on wire racks.

To prepare topping, combine vinegar, oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, pepper, and minced garlic in a medium bowl. Add tomatoes; toss gently.

Preheat broiler.

Sprinkle each flatbread with 1/2 cup cheese; broil flatbreads 1 minute or until cheese melts. Remove from oven; top each flatbread with half of tomato mixture. Sprinkle each flatbread with 1/4 cup basil. Cut each flatbread into 6 equal wedges.

Nutritional Information
Calories:139 (27% from fat)
Fat:4.1g (sat 1.3g,mono 2.1g,poly 0.4g)
Iron: 1.4mg
Sodium: 194mg
Calcium: 73mg

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I bet you'll never guess what is going on outside right now...

I know I live in New England, and I know I'm sort of asking for since I live here, but this is nuts. Once a week we have a major storm. Since the day after Christmas we have had over 64.5 inches.
The snow mounds from all the plowing are nuts! One town has a snow bank that hits the top of the street light! That is just not right.
Well for those of you who aren't in the area, you can enjoy these pictures from various sources of the area right now. We are bracing for another storm that could drop over another foot of snow on us tonight/tomorrow, and then apparently Saturday looks like another storm...and possibly next Tuesday as well.
Grab your sleds folks!