Tag Archives: chicken

baked chicken meatballs

since this is a blog of all of my favorite foods, i couldn’t believe it when i realized that i had never posted these chicken meatballs. i can’t get enough of these, and i’m not surprised, considering the recipe came from Smitten Kitchen. these are the perfect “i don’t know what to make for dinner” or “i want to impress my dinner guests with minimal effort” meal. if i haven’t convinced you yet, i’m going to stop trying, but please for the love of g-d, just make these, okay?!

Beauty, right?

Beauty, right?

baked chicken meatballs

while you could certainly serve these with pasta, as is tradition, i prefer a simple side of sautéed spinach or a big salad.

Serves 4

3 slices Italian bread, torn into small bits (1 cup)
1/3 cup milk
3 ounces sliced pancetta, finely chopped (you can swap in Canadian Bacon if you can’t find pancetta, which i have done many times, or leave the extra meat out altogether)
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 small garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 large egg
1 pound ground chicken
2 tablespoons tomato paste, divided (i like tomato paste so i usually use more)
3 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Preheat oven to 400°F with a rack in the upper third of the oven. Soak bread in milk in a small bowl until softened, about four minutes.

Cook pancetta, onion, and garlic in one tablespoon oil with 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper in a large skillet over medium heat until onion is softened, about 6 minutes. Let it cool for a few minutes.

Squeeze bread to remove excess milk, then discard milk. Lightly beat egg in a large bowl, then combine with chicken, 1 tablespoon tomato paste, pancetta mixture, bread, and parsley.

ready to be mixed

ready to be mixed

Form 12 meatballs and arrange in a 4-sided sheet pan or roasting dish. Stir together remaining tablespoon or two of tomato paste and oil (i usually use less than a tablespoon) and brush over meatballs (i usually just spoon a drop over each and smoosh it down).

oven ready

pre oven

Finally, bake in upper third of oven until meatballs are just cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes (though mine took a good 5-10 minutes longer).

Beauty, right?

fin.

i know what i’m having for dinner tonight.

bon appetit,
e

chicken pot pie

Chicken pot pie was a dinner my mom made frequently during my childhood. I always looked forward to the loud “pop” of opening the crescent roll package, and helping my mom roll the dough over the top of the casserole dish. And then the pot pie itself, warm and comforting, filled to the brim with chunks of potatoes, carrots, peas, pearl onions, mushrooms, and tender pieces of chicken breast. YUM!

I had a sudden craving for chicken pot pie recently, but decided to update my moms version to include fresh instead of canned or frozen vegetables, fillo dough instead of crescent rolls, and skim milk instead of whole milk or cream. The result was a slimmed down, but extremely hearty and comforting one pan classic that my entire house enjoyed. I will definitely be making this again!

chicken pot pie

ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cups diced red potato (about 1 pound)
  • 2 cups diced onion
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms (about 8 ounces)
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup diced carrot
  • 6 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups fat-free milk
  • 1/2 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups chopped cooked chicken breast (about 12 ounces)
  • 1 cup frozen green peas & handful of frozen corn
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen small whole onions, blanched for 2 minutes (can do this with the carrots)
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 (14 x 9-inch) sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed
  • Cooking spray

directions:

Preheat oven to 375°. Melt butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat; add oil. Add potatoes and next 5 ingredients (through carrot), and sauté for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low; sprinkle flour over vegetables. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in milk and broth. Increase heat to medium-high; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes or until thickened. Add chicken, peas, pearl onions, parsley, thyme salt, and pepper. 

Spoon mixture into a 3-quart baking dish. Place 1 phyllo sheet on a large cutting board or work surface (cover remaining dough to keep from drying); lightly spray with cooking spray. Repeat layers with cooking spray and remaining phyllo. Place phyllo layers loosely on top of mixture in dish. Place dish on a baking sheet. Bake at 375° for 30 minutes or until top is golden.

Bon Appetit!

summer dining: greek style mixed grill kebobs and pine nut orzo salad

It is hard to believe that it’s June already, and summer is just around the corner! Summer has always been my favorite season for a multitude of reasons: my birthday, no school, picnics, barbecues, swimming in outdoor pools, running and biking along the Hudson, lightweight colorful dresses, fresh and simple outdoor meals, farmers market trips, the list goes on!

Today I am going to share with you a delicious meal that is a perfect excuse to dust off your grill and outdoor dining set and invite some friends over for an al fresco dinner!

greek style mixed grill kebobs and pine nut orzo salad

Sourced from Rachael Ray, Serves 4

Ingredients for kebobs:

  • 4 cloves garlic, grated or minced
  • 4 sprigs fresh oregano, leaves stripped and finely chopped
  • 6 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves stripped and finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup green olive tapenade
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 lemons, juiced and 1 zested
  • 1/3 plus 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 pounds firm white flesh fish, halibut or swordfish, cut into 12 (2-inch) chunks (I used shrimp instead)
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 12 (2-inch) chunks
  • Black pepper
Ingredients for orzo salad:
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 cup feta cheese crumbles
  • 8 Greek hot peppers, for garnish
  • 1/4 cup kalamata olives, for garnish
  • 2 tomatoes, diced, for garnish
  • 1/2 cucumber, diced, for garnish

Directions:

Preheat grill pan or outdoor grill to medium high. If using wooden skewers, soak them in water to prevent burning.

Place a pot of water on the stove and bring to a boil for the pasta salad. When the water boils, salt it and cook the pasta to al dente.

While the pasta cooks, in a small bowl combine the garlic, oregano, rosemary, tapenade, red pepper flakes, 1 tablespoon lemon zest and the juice of 1 lemon with about 1/3 cup olive oil. 

Place the fish and chicken in separate shallow dishes or bowls and season with salt and pepper then divide the dressing between the bowls and coat the fish and chicken evenly.

Skewer the fish and chicken on metal or soaked wooden skewers.

Grill the chicken 10 to 12 minutes until firm and juices run clear, and the fish for about 6 to 8 minutes, turning the kabobs frequently.

Drain orzo and combine with pine nuts, onions, parsley, feta crumbles, the juice of 1 lemon, about 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, salt and pepper.

Serve the orzo salad with 3 pieces each of chicken and fish along side. Garnish plates with a couple of hot peppers, olives, tomatoes and cucumbers on each plate.

I didn’t get a picture of a finished plate because it was so delicious that we dug in immediately, but you should be able to get an idea from the pictures I took while cooking that this was an absolutely delectable meal. The shrimp/chicken were packed with flavor from the tapenade, fresh herbs, spices and lemon juice, and the orzo salad was so light and fresh from the cucumbers, feta, tomatoes and had a nice crunch from the pine nuts. That salad alone would make an excellent addition to any picnic.

Bon appetit!