Pasta Salad


Pasta Salad

I love a good pasta salad with any meal but I do not like mayonnaise.  That’s right I am a mayo hater and proud of it.  This salad is made with a good extra virgin olive oil and veggies.  Use whatever veggies you like to change up this salad every time you make it.  Enjoy.

Ingredients:

½ red pepper, chopped small

1 green onion, chopped

1 zucchini, chopped small

2 pickle slices, chopped

2 green olives (queens), chopped

2 Kalamata olives, chopped

¼ red onion, chopped small

1 lb. pasta, cooked (use your favorite kind

1 tbsp. Parmesan cheese, grated

Salt and pepper

Oregano fresh, chopped

Directions:

Combine the first seven ingredients and mix together.  When the pasta is cooked and cooled add it to the vegetable mixture and combine.  Coat the pasta with olive oil.  Add the Parmesan cheese and mix.  Season with salt and pepper and add the oregano.

 

Chicken Fingers


Chicken Fingers

This is one of those very tasty, easy recipes.  It takes about 5 minutes to prepare and the cooking time is short.  I like mine with some salsa or hot sauce. I served this with steamed broccoli.

Ingredients:

1 cup bread crumbs

1/8 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

1 Tbsp. paprika

1 lb. chicken tenders

1Tbsp. olive oil

Directions:

Mix the bread crumbs, Parmesan, and paprika in a mixing bowl.  Add the chicken making sure you cover all sides.  Place the chicken on an oiled baking sheet and put in a 375 oven for 40 minutes turning once about half way.

Sweet and Spicy Grilled Chicken Breast


Sweet and Spicy Grilled Chicken Breast

Let me tell you this dish is really good.  The combination of the chipotle chili’s and the honey really works to mellow out the spice.  The only reason I used the chili’s is I had some left over from making empanadas.  I will be using more of these in the future.  Just make sure you don’t overcook the chicken so it stays nice and moist.

Ingredients:

4 chicken breast, skinless and boneless

Salt and pepper

3 chipotle chili’s in adobe sauce (spicy), chopped

1/8 cup honey

1 cup frozen peas

Directions:

Mix the honey and chili’s together for the glaze.

Season the chicken with the salt and pepper and put on a hot grill.  Turn the chicken after about 10 minutes and brush the chicken with the glaze.  Turn after cooking for another five minutes and brush the other side with the glaze.  Turn chicken again and cook for a couple of minutes.  Remove to a serving plate to rest.  Slice the chicken in ½” pieces and serve.

Cauliflower Mash


Cauliflower Mash

After one disaster, I did it.  I made it work and it tasted great.  This is very simple to make if you don’t add to much milk.  This looks like mashed potatoes but really tastes like cauliflower.  I added the cilantro and peas to give it some color and it worked great.

Ingredients:

1 head of cauliflower

Salt and pepper

Handful of cilantro

½ cup of frozen peas

Directions:

Steam the cauliflower until it is soft.  Place the cauliflower in a food processor and mix until it is chunky.  Add salt and pepper, put processor on low and add the milk a little at a time until you see the constancy of mashed potatoes.  Add the cilantro and pulse until mixed.  In a serving bowl place the frozen peas on the bottom and place the cauliflower on top of the peas.  Place in a 250 oven for ten minutes and serve.

Grilled Chicken Thighs with Lemon Agave Glaze


Grilled Chicken Thighs with Lemon Agave Glaze

This is my first experiment using agave nectar and I was very pleased with the outcome.  The glaze really picked the grilled chicken up with the sweet and sour flavors.  I will be doing more experimenting.

Ingredients:

8 chicken thighs bone in and skin on

Salt and pepper

Glaze, brushed on while cooking

The Glaze:

Juice of 2 lemons

2 tbsp. agave nectar

Directions:

Combine the juice and the agave to make the glaze.  Season the chicken with the salt and pepper.  Place the chicken on a hot grill with the cover closed.  After five minutes brush the glaze on the chicken and keep cooking.

Never turn the chicken over, just cook on one side.  If you have flair ups just move the chicken to another spot. 

Brush the chicken with the glaze as often as you would like, I did it just about every time I checked to see if they were doing alright.

The chicken is done when the skin is brown and crispy.

I served mine with some steamed broccoli.

We did have an experiment go bad, again.  I was also making mashed potatoes using cauliflower.  Well let’s just say that I used a little too much milk and I got cauliflower soup.  Tasted alright but really didn’t look very appetizing.  I will do it again and post the results.

 

Pizza Empanada


Empanadas

These lovely bundles do take a long time to make so I made an afternoon of it making a mess in the kitchen.  A great way to spend the afternoon.

I wish I could take credit for coming up with the recipes but we didn’t.  I made three types of empanada:

Guava Empanada

http://latinfood.about.com/od/empanadas/r/Guava-Empanada-Recipe.htm

Vegetarian Empanadas with Black Beans and Corn

http://southamericanfood.about.com/od/snacksstreetfood/r/cornempanadas.htm

Pizza Empanada

http://latinfood.about.com/od/appetizersandsnacks/r/pizzaempanada.htm

Check these out, they came out fantastic.  I did have a couple blow open so make sure you seal yours very well.

I also baked ours in the oven at 375 for about 20 minutes.  Really didn’t want all that oil if I fried them.

Chicken Parmesan


Chicken Parmesan

This is my quick and easy version of chicken Parmesan.  I hate having to pound out the chicken breast so instead I cut them into three pieces.  First remove the tender and part of the breast together.  Then simply slice the breast in half and you will end up with a good thickness for chicken Parmesan.

Ingredients:

2          Chicken breast, boneless, skinless trimmed as stated above

Salt and pepper

1 cup   Italian bread crumbs

¼ cup  Parmesan cheese shredded

1 tbsp. Herbs, dried (your favorite)

2          Eggs beaten

Oil, enough to fill the bottom of your skillet

Pasta sauce

½ cup Mozzarella shredded cheese

Directions:

Season the chicken breast on both sides with salt and pepper.  Add the dried herbs and shredded cheese to the bread crumbs and mix well.  Dip the chicken into the egg, shaking off excess, then place in the bread crumbs coating the chicken well on both sides.  Complete this for all the chicken pieces and place all the chicken on a plate.  Heat the oil in a large skillet.  Cook the chicken until each side is browned.  Remove the chicken to a baking sheet.  Preheat the oven to 350.  Cover each piece of chicken with a thin layer of sauce and top with the shredded cheese.  Bake until the cheese is melted.  Serve with your favorite pasta.