Roasted Bruschetta

I’m not a big fan of uncooked tomatoes so I came up with a delicious roasted tomato¬†recipe for bruschetta. It’s so simple to make and the perfect appetizer. My sister and her family came over for dinner this week and I made it with my chicken piccata. Ending with the most delectable cheesecake (my sis brought and left for me to stuff my face for days), I think everyone went home with happy tummies and my dinner party was a success ūüôā

Ingredients:

  • 10.5 oz.¬†carton of cherry tomatoes
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • olive oil
  • .66 oz.¬†carton of fresh basil or a handful
  • Salt & pepper
  • French bread baguette
  • cup of¬†shredded¬†mozzarella cheese

Directions:

Set your oven to broil. Rinse tomatoes and place in a shallow pan. Mince 1 clove of garlic and toss into pan with tomatoes. Drizzle tomatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

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Broil for 15 minutes or until tomatoes blister and start to burst. While to tomatoes are roasting, rinse and chop up basil julienned style (cut into long thin strips) and place in a large serving bowl.

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Remove tomatoes ¬†from oven and set aside until cooled slightly. Be careful of bursting tomatoes! I’ve been popped a few times! Smash tomatoes up with a fork and add to the basil and mix to combine.

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Set oven to 450 degrees. Slice up baguette and drizzle with olive oil. bake until slightly toasted. about 5 minutes.

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Top the bread with tomatoes and a sprinkle of cheese and enjoy!

**another fun way to serve these is to build them and bake the cheese on top. Either way is really delicious!

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Bbq chicken pizza

I’m all about the simple meals I can throw together fast and that my family really enjoys. My husband really likes bbq chicken pizza so I thought I would try to whip one up at home. I’m pretty sure this recipe will be on repeat for a while.

The trick is using a few store bought items but if you got the time and skill to make dough from scratch then go for it! I picked up some pre made pizza dough from the store (Stone Fire brand thin crust), my favorite bbq sauce (sweet baby rays), smoked gouda cheese, mozerella cheese, boneless skinless chicken breast and cilantro.

I baked 1 chicken breast smothered in  bbq sauce for 25 mins on 350 degrees. Covered the pizza dough with desired amount of bbq sauce, chopped up chicken, then covered with desired amount of mozzarella, and about a handful of shredded smoked gouda. I baked the pizza on the rack for the time needed for that type of dough and then added cilantro and we stuffed our faces. I really think the type of bbq sauce and the smoked gouda made all the difference!

This recipe is really so easy, took me about 30 mins including chicken cooking time. If you have left over chicken it could take less than 15 mins! imagine that!

List of ingredients:

  • 1 boneless skinless chicken breast
  • pizza dough (stone fire thin crust dough)
  • 1 cup bbq sauce (sweet baby rays)
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup smoked gouda
  • pinch of cilantro

Chicken Piccata

Chicken Piccata is one of my favorites to order at restaurants. I just love the lemony flavor and capers mmmmm. So I decided to try to make it myself at home, it came out even better than the one I ordered from Cheesecake Factory over the weekend! I was very happy with the result so I wanted to share it with you all.

I got the recipe from Giada De Laurentiis¬†and made a few changes to it. I added a splash more stock and half a garlic clove minced. I just realized I forgot to put in the parsley in the end but I guess it wasn’t missed… add it if you want.

Ingredients:

  • 2 skinless and boneless chicken breast, butterflied and then cut in half or use thin sliced
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • All-purpose flour, for dredging
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock, or more if needed
  • 1/4 cup brined capers, rinsed
  • 1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 clove garlic, minced

Directions:

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 3 tablespoons olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add 2 pieces of chicken and cook for 3 minutes. When chicken is browned, flip and cook other side for 3 minutes. Remove and transfer to plate. Melt 2 more tablespoons butter and add another 2 tablespoons olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add the other 2 pieces of chicken and brown both sides in same manner. Remove pan from heat and add chicken to the plate.

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image1¬†(I forgot to take more pictures of the steps, I got into cooking mode and don’t burn the chicken mode.¬†You are going to have to use your imagination from here.)

Into the pan add the lemon juice, stock, garlic and capers. Return to stove and bring to boil, scraping up brown bits from the pan for extra flavor. Check for seasoning and add more stock if it is too tart. Return all the chicken to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove chicken to platter. Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter to sauce and whisk vigorously. Pour sauce over chicken and garnish with parsley.

Serve with your favorite pasta and veggies. I served it with parmesan mashed potatoes, sometimes my German/Italian side comes out in my food. I can eat potatoes with every thing!

Let me know if you end up making this or any other recipes on my blog ūüôā

Enjoy!

J

Greek salad and homemade Vinaigrette

Switching gears from the norm Italian and making Greek tonight! Since our weather here has been feeling like summer, I decided to make a fresh salad for dinner.

Salad serves 4 or 2 hungry people.

Greek Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed¬†lemon juice
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 tsp oregano
  • pinch of S & P
  • pinch of sugar
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta

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Combine vinegar, lemon, garlic, oregano and S & P in a bowl. With a whisk, slowly stream in olive oil and whisk into the mixture. You will see it thicken up a bit.  Crumble up feta cheese and whisk into vinaigrette mashing any big chunks. Then add a pinch of sugar to lessen the acidic level.

*Vinaigrette adapted from here. I added a few things to it.

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Store in a jar with a lid and shake up really well before each use.

This dressing is great for salads and marinades

Greek Salad

  • Romaine lettuce (10 oz. bag)
  • Feta cheese
  • kalamata olives
  • Persian cucumbers
  • 2 breast of chicken (boneless skinless)
  • Italian salad dressing for marinade
  • pita bread

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Marinade the chicken the day before in Italian dressing or in the vinaigrette if you made it ahead of time.

Cook the chicken in a frying pan. Get your salad ready by putting the lettuce in a bowl, dicing up cucumbers, cutting olives in half and crumble up cheese. When chicken is done, put in fridge to cool and add to salad. Put salad inside a pita pocket or enjoy alone.

Hope you enjoyed this recipe! Thanks for reading ūüôā

J

Lasagna

As you may notice, I love to cook Italian food. Lasagna is a classic that I love to make for my family when I want some¬† leftovers or when I’m cooking for a lot of people. Everyone is always left with happy tummies.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 pound package of ground turkey
  • 1 pound Hot Jimmy Dean Sausage
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounce)¬†Hunts Tomato Sauce
  • 3 cups of Low fat ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 bags of mozzarella cheese
  • 5 leaves of fresh basil (julienned)
  • 3¬†tbsp. oregano
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 2 whole beaten eggs
  • Lasagna noodles (about 12)
  • fresh baby spinach

Instructions:

Boil lasagna pasta, add salt to water for flavor and a splash of olive oil to prevent sticking.

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In a large skillet combine, ground turkey, sausage and garlic. Cook over medium heat until brown. Drain half of the fat, keep some for flavor. Add tomato sauce, 1 tbsp oregano, basil, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir to combine and simmer for 45 mins.

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I made my sauce separately but either way works. just combine with both are finished.

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While sauce is simmering, in a mixing bowl combine ricotta cheese, 1 cup of parmesan, beaten eggs, 2 tblsp oregano, and a pinch of salt and pepper. stir to combine and set aside.

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cook lasagna al dente. Drain and rinse with cold water so its easier to work with. I lay mine out of non stick foil first.

To assemble

Arrange a layer of pasta on bottom of baking dish overlapping. (about 4 pastas)

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spoon half of cheese mixture over the pasta.

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spread a layer or mozzarella cheese over ricotta mixture.

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layer of baby spinach

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spoon a little less than half of meat mixture

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Repeat, ending in meat mixture. Sprinkle top generously with parmesan cheese.

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so pretty!

Cover with foil and bake 350 degrees for about 30 mins or until hot and bubbly. The last 15 mins of baking, remove foil.

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I’m not very good at getting it out in one piece

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enjoy!!

xo,

J