Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Chicken Francese and Wilted Spinach

I was really excited about trying this recipe. I loved the ingredients, and there aren't that many. I love cooking fresh spinach, I can't stand that stuff in the can, and the frozen kind is only good for putting into recipes with other ingredients in my opinion. 

So I got into the kitchen with Kevin and went straight to work. Well, Kevin went straight to work actually. Since he has become my sous chef I don't do much prep work. Something I think I have been taking for granted a bit. He has been sick for the last three days so I have been on my own to cook. I realized how much help he is and how much I love being in the kitchen with him.

With all the prep done we got down to the business of cooking which ended up becoming a problem. The recipe calls for you to add a crushed clove of garlic to the pan as the oil and butter heats up. I realize after the fact that it was just to "perfume" the oil and butter with garlic, but the recipe wasn't clear on that fact. It never calls for you to remove the garlic from the pan. The little voice inside my head told me to remove the garlic, but I of course ignored that smart little voice and left the garlic in as I cooked the chicken.

The chicken cooked beautifully. This recipe calls for chicken cutlets and you know by my previous posts that I like using cutlets a lot. They were a perfect golden brown and we couldn't wait to eat them. I liked the fact that you only use a light coating of flour. The chicken wasn't heavily breaded, just that nice little crispy.

After the chicken was done the recipe called for the addition of wine and a few other ingredients to the pan the chicken was cooked in to create a sauce for the chicken. I added everything it called for but when I went to taste it all I could taste was burnt garlic. UGH! Thank goodness the flavor didn't taint the chicken, but the sauce was tragically unable to be salvaged. Now I am in a spot. Chicken is cooked perfectly and ready for a sauce but there was no sauce to use. I quickly washed the pan out to get rid of that awful burnt taste and threw together a sauce of my own. I used butter and garlic (unburnt this time), added some flour to the mix to make a quick roux. To that I added white wine, chicken stock, salt and pepper and threw in some parsley at the end. It came out great THANK GOD!! The meal is saved!

I quickly wilted the spinach and called everyone to get their food. I was very nervous to see what they would think of my on the fly sauce. I began to here mmmm's so I knew I had gotten away with it. Woohooo yay me!

So this was a growing experience for me. I used to stress out over making sure everything was perfect and there was a day when I would have thrown my hands up in the air and had no idea what to do after the mishap. But now I am able to think clearly and shoot from the hip if I have too. It felt really good. I guess I really turned this recipe into one of my own by changing the sauce so drastically. That is a nice feeling too. If anyone makes this one could you please let me know how your sauce turns out. And for goodness sake don't forget to remove the garlic before you cook the chicken!

This is recipe #84

Chicken Francese and Wilted Spinach


1 1/2 pounds chicken breast cutlets
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons poultry seasoning (half a palmful)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour (eyeball it)
2 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk
a splash of milk or half and half
4 tablespoons EVOO
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 garlic cloves, 1 crushed, 2 chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine (a couple of glugs)
a handful of fresh flat leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped
1 pound triple washed spinach, tough stems removed, coarsely chopped
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg (eyeball it)

Preheat a large nonstick over medium to medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning. Dredge the chicken in flour. In a small bowl, beat the eggs and egg yolk with milk or half and half and season with salt. Add 2 tablespoons of EVOO to the skillet. Then add 2 tablespoons of the butter cut into small pieces. When the butter melts into the oil, add the crushed clove of garlic to the skillet. Wen the garlic speaks by sizzling in the oil, coat the chicken in the egg mixture, then add to the hot pan (remember to take the garlic out of the pan before you do this).Cook the chicken on both sides until just golden, 6 to 7 minutes total. Transfer the chicken to a plate and tent loosely with foil to retain the heat. Add the wine to the pan and deglaze by whisking up the drippings. Reduce the wine for 1 minute, then add the remaining tablespoon of butter and parsley to the pan. Pour the sauce over the chicken.

Return the skillet to the heat. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of EVOO, then add the chopped garlic and let it come to a sizzle. Wilt the spinach, turning it to coat in the EVOO, and season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Serve the spinach alongside the chicken francese. Pass crusty bread to mop up the sauce.


Chicken Francese

Wilted Spinach

Monday, April 25, 2011

Southwestern Pasta Bake

Hello to my favorite foodie gang! I thought Springtime had come to my little corner of Washington but it was just a tease. One day of sunshine and 60+ weather, now we are back to drizzle. Even my tulips are confused by this crazy weather. I really want to get my new batch of herbs planted and get my garden set up, but I don't want to get soaking wet to do it! 

Anyway. let me get to today's recipe. We are on #153 Southwestern Pasta Bake. To be honest, this was one of those recipes that I read and thought it sounded OK but I wasn't in a huge hurry to make it. For some reason I just wasn't putting all of the ingredients together in my head and come up with YUM. Also, I had it on my shopping list and had picked up all of the groceries but I was having a hard time finding a night to cook when someone besides Kevin and I would be eating. I am sure that you all trust our opinions, but I like to have more to offer.

Finally I gave up and made it for dinner. I was pleasantly surprised at how good it tasted. Kevin and I really liked it. Of course I feel the heat could have been kicked up a notch. I even kept the ribs and seeds with the jalapeño, but next time I would go for two peppers at least.  Of course for those of you that like it on the milder side, if you remove the ribs and seeds of the pepper you will be just fine.

I also had more like 2 pounds of chicken vs the 26 ounces called for because I had chicken breasts in the freezer already so I used 4 of those and they were bigger breasts. I liked how meaty it made the dish though.

After Kevin and I had our fill we put the leftovers in a Rubbermaid container and popped it into the freezer for a night when I didn't feel like cooking, not that I have many of those, but just to have it. The next night Seth and Melissa came over unexpectedly and I didn't have anything planned. Kevin and I looked at each other and both had the same idea, we needed their input on the recipe, so we pulled it out, warmed it up and had it for dinner a second night. Actually, I think it was even better the second time. Maybe because the flavors had time to really get happy together? I am not sure, but the kids both really liked it. 

So this dish went from one that really didn't grab me, to one that is a winner in my book.

Sorry, I forgot to take a picture. Bad Bobbi!

Southwestern Pasta Bake


Coarse salt
1 pound penne rigate or cavatappi (corkscrew) pasta
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (twice around the pan)
4 6-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
1 tablespoon ground cumin (1 palmful)
1 tablespoon ground coriander (1 palmful)
2 tablespoons chili powder (2 palmfuls)
Coarse black pepper
1 large yellow onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
3/4 pound sharp yellow cheddar cheese (about 2 1/2 cups)
1/4 fresh cilantro leaves, chopped (a generous handful)
1/2 cup fresh flat leaf parsley leaves, chopped (a couple of handfuls)

Preheat the broiler to high and position the rack 8 inches from the heat.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt the boiling water and cook the pasta until slightly undercooked-a little chewy at the center.

While the water is coming to a boil, preheat a large skillet over medium high heat with vegetable oil. Season the chicken with cumin, coriander, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Add the seasoned chicken to the hot skillet and cook until light brown, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the onions, garlic, and jalapeño and continue to cook for 5 minutes, While the chicken is cooking with the onions, make the Cheddar sauce.

In a medium sauce pot, melt the butter and add the flour to it. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes over moderate heat, whisk in the milk. When the milk comes to a bubble, stir in the cheese, cilantro, and parsley with a wooden spoon. Season with a little salt and pepper and remove the cheese sauce from the heat.

Once the pasta is cooked, drain it and add it back to the large pot, add the contents of the chicken skillet and all of the cheddar sauce, and stir to combine. Transfer to a baking dish and place under the broiler to lightly brown.

Serves 4

*When I reheated the pasta bake the next night, I warmed the container in a hot water bath. Once it was fairly thawed out I transfered it to the casserole dish and topped it with panko bread crumbs. Then cooked it in a 350 over for 40 minutes.
Basic Fresh Pasta on Foodista

Chicken Breast

Chicken Southwestern

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Veal Scallopine with Dijon Sauce, Asparagus, and Avocados

Well, as you can see by my lack of posting, I was in fact coming down with a bug. And what a bug it was! I am finally coming out of my Nyquil haze and there is actually sunshine in my little corner of Washington! Imagine that!! I am hoping Spring has sprung here but ssshhhhh don't say it too loud, I don't want to scare it away.

OK, this is recipe #189. I actually made this on the 14th. It was my daughters birthday and as usual I asked her what she wanted for her birthday dinner. That is the routine with my kids, and has been for years. She surprised me by telling me that whatever I wanted to cook was fine with her. She even told me to try the veal recipe if I wanted. I was shocked! She was really kinda nervous about trying veal. Like I said she is my Miss Picky. But I pointed out to her that she likes lamb so she agreed to try veal.

The first thing that surprised me when I started prepping to cook the recipe was, when I removed the the veal scallopine I bought from it's packaging it was in thin strips. I have never cooked veal scallopine before, but I was expecting something more along the line of thin steak shaped pieces of meat, or rounds. That was just odd to me, but I kept on prepping. I was really surprised at how easy this was to make. The name makes it sound so, well, complicated I guess. Fancy name = lots of work, right? Nope, not true. Once I started cooking my biggest fear was overcooking the meat and making it tough but I cooked it just as is says in the recipe and it was perfect. 

I followed the recipe to the letter, like a good girl, and everything came out just as it was supposed to. I wasn't sure how to place it on the plate so I did the best I could with Rachael's instruction. Hopefully I was right. You can let me know how the picture looks.

As for the reviews, Jessi disliked it immediately. I think that could have been mostly in her head. She got herself psyched up that it she wouldn't like it, I am not sure. Kevin and I were both on the fence with it. I liked the veal, but wasn't jumping up and down about it. Kevin said he didn't like it. He did love the sauce with the avocados and asparagus though. I kind of thought this was a weird combo when I was making it, but really when you eat it all together it really was good. I am thinking about playing around with this sauce and the avocados and some other meats. 

If you like veal you will love this recipe. Rachael says "this dish is one buttery, delicious, edible ode to spring" and it really was very buttery. Like I said, I liked it but just that, liked it, wasn't head over heals in love with it. 

Veal Scallopine with Dijon Sauce, Asparagus, and Avocados


 Coarse salt
1 lemon
1 pound very thin asparagus tips
2 ripe Haas avocados
EVOO for drizzling, plus 2 tablespoons
1 1/4 pounds veal scallopine
Coarse black pepper
1 tablespoon all purpose flour, plus more for dredging
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 dry white wine
1 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/3 cup cream or half and half
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives

In a large saucepan, bring 1 inch of water to a boil. Salt the water. Add a couple of curls of rind from the lemon and the asparagus tips. Cook the tips for 3 minutes, then drain and reserve.

Cut into and around the pits of the avocados. Scoop the flesh from the avocados, and slice. Dress the slices with a little lemon juice, a drizzle of EVOO, and a pinch of salt, reserve.

Preheat your largest skillet over medium heat. Season the veal with salt and pepper on both sides. Dredge the scallopine in a little flour. Add the two tablespoons of the EVOO and the two tablespoons of the butter to the hot skillet. WHen the butter melts into the oil, add the veal and cook for 2 minutes on each side, or until evenly light golden in color. Place the veal on a platter under a loose tent of foil.

Add the remaining tablespoon of butter and the tablespoon of flour to the skillet. Cook for 1 minute, then whisk in the wine and scrape up the pans drippings. Whisk the stock into the wine and add the thyme, salt, pepper, and mustard. Stir in the cream, then remove from the heat.

Arrange the asparagus and sliced avocados over the veal and pour a line of sauce over the top. Garnish the dinner plates or platter with chopped chives and serve.

Serves 4

Veal Scallopine



Friday, April 15, 2011

Chicken with Wild Mushrooms and Balsamic Cream Sauce

Sorry I am behind a day in posting. I have two recipes to do, but I have been a been feeling poorly. I am hoping I am not coming down with a bug! I miss you guys when I don't post. Hopefully you miss me too!

Let me start this off with I knew Jessi's wouldn't even think about eating this one, I hoped, but knew it was a pipe dream. This girl can NOT stand mushrooms. Something that I don't understand since pretty much everyone else in our family likes them. Seth isn't jump up and down in love with them, but he at least will eat them. Not Jessi, nuh uh, no way are you getting a mushroom anywhere near this girls mouth! So, as soon as she saw that there were 36 mushrooms in this recipe, well she got a bowl of Ramen and was happy. 

Kevin and I on the other hand were having a very hard time leaving the mushrooms in the pan until the end of the meal! I just love sauteed mushrooms, as does Kevin. We kept standing over the pot impatiently waiting for them to cook, and balsamic cream sauce? Oh My Gosh!!! Heavenly!! I could have made a meal of just the mushroom and sauce over the orzo pasta. Kevin was just smelling the balsamic out of the bottle and said it smelled so good he wanted to take a drink! There is nothing like a nice aged balsamic, so yummy.

On the chicken side of things, I suggest using chicken cutlets or boneless skinless chicken thighs, depending on your preference for light or dark meat. The issue with the whole breast half, is the typical one, they dry out. I am not a big fan of white meat chicken unless it is in a cutlet or chopped up in something for that very reason. But this is not because of my prejudice, the chicken did come out dry even though I cooked it exactly as the recipe called for.

So recipe #52 is a pretty easy recipe. The hardest part is slicing all of those mushrooms on one cutting board! Kevin had done all the other prep work so there was garlic, shallots, and thyme on one corner of the board and I took over the rest with all of my mushrooms!

I think this one is a keeper just for the sauce alone. I will definitely make it with thighs next time though.

Chicken with Wild Mushrooms and Balsamic Cream Sauce


Coarse salt
1/2 pound orzo pasta
2 tablespoons EVOO
4 6 ounce boneless,skinless chicken  breast halves
Coarse black pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
12 cremini mushrooms, sliced
12 shiitake mushrooms, sliced
12 white mushrooms, sliced
2 large cloves of garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped
2 large shallots, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons heavy cream or half and half
1/4 cup fresh flat leaf parsley leaves, chopped

Heat a large pot of water to a boil. Salt the water and add the orzo. Cook until al dente.

Preheat a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat and add the EVOO. Season the chicken liberally with salt and pepper and add to the hot skillet. Cook the chicken for 5 to 6 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken from the pan and cover with foil to keep warm.

Return the skillet to the heat, reduce the heat a bit, and add the butter. Once the butter melts, add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 4 to 5 minutes. Once the mushrooms are brown, season with salt and pepper, then add the garlic, shallots, and thyme. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 3 minutes, or until the shallots are wilted. Sprinkle the flour into the pan and cook for 2 more minutes. Whisk in the stock, balsamic vinegar, and cream. Turn the heat up to high and simmer for about 2 minutes, or until thickened. Slice the chicken on an angle. Add the chicken back to the skillet to heat up with the parsley, about 1 minute,

To serve, pile the orzo on a dinner plate and top with the sliced chicken and the sauce.

serves 4

Sauteed Chicken With Mushrooms and Cream


Balsamic Mushrooms

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Halibut Soup or just call it Epic Yumminess in a bowl!!

Kevin and I got back from Vegas on Friday but I didn't cook until last night. It seems we are much older than we obviously thought we were and we required a rest from our vacation. Seriously it was bed, hot tub, and TV for this girl all weekend long!

Monday comes along and I realize that I have taken a week off from my duties and I dove right back into the book trying to find some goodies for us this week. I was sooooo excited to find this recipe! Halibut is one of my all time faves PLUS it was on sale (thank goodness) this week, so my pound and a half didn't cost me an arm and a leg.

Yesterday morning I had to take Jessi to have a lump removed from her left thumb so that took up much of the morning. I left there at 10:15 with a guarantee from the nurse that Jessi would not be ready to be picked up from her surgery for at least 2 to 3 hours. I rushed home to make my shopping list and hit the road hoping to get my shopping done before I had to pick up my girl. No such luck, I got the call as I was getting some gas on the way to the grocery store. I told them I would be right there. Once I got there and got Jessi loaded up in the car I asked her if she felt up to going shopping with me or if she felt too woozy and just wanted to go home. The trooper that she is said she would be fine. Once we got to the store she asked me if she could drive one of the little carts. I don't know what possessed me to think it would be safer for a person coming off of anesthesia to drive something rather than walking, but at the time it sounded right. An hour later and several bruises on the back of  my legs I began to question my logic. But at  least the only thing she ran over was me. The reason I am telling you all of this is to attempt an excuse for again not having everything I needed for the recipe.....did it work?

Yes I really think I am somehow a bit recipe challenged, but I thought I would point out how crazy my morning was to show that my little scattered brain was much more scattered than usual. When I got settled down and ready to cook I realized I somehow completely overlooked the fact that the recipe clearly called for 1 medium zucchini and the juice of one lime *sigh* I thought "Here we go again"!

Luckily for me this is an AMAZING recipe. Do I think the zucchini and lime juice would have made it better? Sure, but don't worry, even without them this one is so yummy you won't care.

Last night was recipe #55 Halibut Soup. I again fell short of my duties by forgetting to take a picture. I could smack myself because it looked so good in the pot and in the bowl. But I had Seth and Melissa over and they both got their bowls and were going on and on about how good it was that I just flat forgot what I was doing and jumped right in to get my bowl too. 

Minus the missing pieces of the recipe, this is how it went. I did use double what it called for in garlic, but my cloves were so small I felt it needed more. I also cooked my veggies for about double the time it called for and covered the pot to help sweat them down. I wanted to make sure the veggies were good and soft. I pretty much just poached the fish in the hot soup broth, I never brought it back up to a simmer after I put the fish in. I left it on low (#2 on my stove dial) and put the lid back on it for the 5 minutes. The good thing about cooking it this way is that the fish won't over cook. Kevin was doing yard work and I wanted the soup to be ready for him as soon as he got in but not over done. It was perfect. Even little Miss Picky said the fish was cooked perfectly. Oh and she said to say she gave the recipe 1 1/2 thumbs up since the bandage kept her from using her thumb. She is a nut!

I used andouille sausage instead of the chorizo and I didn't remove the casings. Why you ask? Well the darn things just wouldn't come off! I also thought that the andouille would add a bit more spice and I was right. With the andouille and the poblano pepper it was at a nice spice level but not too spicy. I added about 2 cups more chicken stock and I used both the parsley and the cilantro. Plus I used a bit of lemon juice in place of the lime. Like I said, it wasn't perfect, at least in my mind, since I didn't have all of the ingredients. But everyone else said they loved it just the way it was. We all agreed this one is a keeper, and you can bet next time I will remember to pick up ALL of the ingredients!

Oh, make sure and get some nice crusty bread to mop up all that yummy broth!!

Halibut Soup


  • 2 tablespoons EVOO
  • 1/2 pound chorizo or andouille sausage
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled, cut in half lengthwise, then sliced into half moons
  • 1 poblano pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup dry white wine (3 or 4 glugs)
  • 1 quart chicken stock (I used a quart and a half))
  • 1 15 ounce can of hominy (I used the white hominy)
  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh halibut, cut into two inch chunks
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut in half lengthwise, then sliced into half moons
  • 1/4 cup fresh flat leaf parsley leave (a generous handful), chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves (optional)
  • juice of 1 lime


Preheat a large soup pot over medium-high heat with the EVOO (twice around the pan). Remove the sausage casings and slice the sausage thinly. Add the sliced sausage to the pot and cook, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes. Add the onions, carrots, poblano, and garlic, season with salt and pepper, and cook, sirring frequently for 5 minutes. Add the white wine and cook for another 3 minutes. Add the chicken stock, bring up to a simmer, and cook for 5 minutes. You want the soup to be at a gentle simmer when you add the fish so, if necessary, turn the heat down a bit. Add the hominy, the halibut, and the zucchini. Gently simmer for 5 minutes. Finish the soup with the parsley, cilantro (if using), and the lime juice.

Serves 4

Halibut Soup

Monday, April 4, 2011

Big Beef Balls with Bucatini

I chose this recipe because Kevin's daughter was coming for dinner and she had told me she like spaghetti. I was excited to find something that I could cook that would not only make her happy, but also be from the 365 No Repeats. Unfortunately she didn't make it for dinner, but we liked what we had.

Sometimes the ingredients that Rachael puts in her recipes drive me crazy. I know she says that she lives in a small town and her store carries these things but my stores a lot of the time DON'T and that makes me nuts. I mean nuttier than I already am. The one in this recipe was the bucatini pasta. I had seen her use this pasta on 30 Minute Meals and thought it would be interesting however, I hadn't been able to find pappardelle pasta anywhere until just recently. I was determined to not be negative about the hunt for this elusive pasta and off I went into the drizzle to complete my quest.

As I began to scour the pasta isle of the store, I started getting more and more depressed thinking I was not going to be able to find a major part of this meal (I mean it is in the name of the recipe for God's sake!) I had to be able to find this pasta! Out of the corner of my eye I spotted a pasta that looked like spaghetti but much thicker. Ok I knew bucatini is this hollow spaghetti so I snatched up the bag like it was a pot of gold. Much to my dismay, when I turned the package over the pasta was called perciatelli. My smile fell and my frustration grew. I must have gone through every single type of pasta they had at the store, and was just about to give up and buy regular spaghetti and issue my apologies when a light bulb went off in my head. I grabbed my trusty iPhone and jumped on Google. I did a search for perciatelle pasta and the very first one said perciatelli a fun spaghetti like noodle with a tiny hole running through it YAY!!! DING DING DING I found it. After I did my little happy dance, and the lady down the isle looked at me like I shouldn't be drinking this early in the day. I purchased my little treasure and away we went, home to make a wonderful meal with this exciting new treat. I know it is crazy that I am this excited about pasta right? I need to get out more.

Now this recipe, #269, was a bit confusing for me to follow because it was a twist to a Master recipe. So it is like you are reading two recipes at once. Maybe it is just me, I don't know, but seemed confusing. Hopefully I can make it clear when I share it with you.

I did follow this recipe very closely. I think that the meatballs need another egg or less bread crumbs because mine had a hard time staying together. They also need to cook longer in the oven. I cooked mine for the exact amount of time the recipe said and they were not cooked all the way through. My answer to that was to place them in with the sauce and cover the pot so they could finish cooking that way. It didn't help the problem of them not staying in one piece, in fact it probably added to the problem, but they were nicely cooked and took on a lot of the sauce, which we all really liked.

I need to get some different plates, the plain white is getting boring for all of the pictures. Although it does make the food the focus, so we will see.

Big Beef Balls with Bucatini


  • coarse salt
  • 1 pound bucatini (thick hollow spaghetti)
  • 1 1/2 pounds extra lean ground  beef
  • 6 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup Italian style bread crumbs ( a couple of overflowing handfuls)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus some to pass at the table
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • fresh black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons EVOO, plus some for drizzling
  • 1 small to medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes, San Marzano variety if available
  • 1/2 fresh flat leaf parsley leaves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
  • 3 tablespoons capers, drained and chopped
  • 1/4 pound pancetta, chopped
  • 12 cremini (baby portabello) mushrooms caps, chopped
  • 1/2 beef stock

Preheat the oven to 400. Heat a large pot of water to a boil.

Heat a deep skillet over medium heat. Cook onions in 1 tablespoon of the EVOO for 5 minutes. Remove the onions and set them aside to cool.  In a large bowl, mix the meat with half of the onions, 3 cloves of the chopped garlic, the egg, bread crumbs, cheese, allspice, capers, sage, a handful of chopped parsley, salt, pepper, and a healthy drizzle of EVOO. Score the meat into 4 sections and make three very large balls from each section. Arrange the 12 balls on a nonstick cookie sheet and roast for 15 minutes until firm, but not hard.

Add salt to the boiling water and drop the bucatini in, cook to al dente. Drain the pasta.

While the pasta and meatballs are cooking, heat another tablespoon of the EVOO in the skillet in which the onions were cooked. Add the pancetta and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, then add the remaining garlic and the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes. Season the mushrooms with salt and pepper. Add the remaining onions back and deglaze the pan with the red wine, cook for 1 minute, add the beef stock, and whisk up any brown bits. Stir in the tomatoes and season the sauce with salt and pepper. Stir in the remaining parsley. Simmer for 5 minutes.

Toss the pasta with half of the sauce. Remove the meatballs from the oven and add to the remaining sauce, turning to coat. Serve 3 meatballs per person alongside the pasta. Spoon any remaining sauce over the pasta. Pass extra cheese at the table. Serve with a green salad.

Serves 4
Ground Beef on Foodista

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Turkey Club Super Mashers

Happy Sunday Everyone! I have been so busy getting everything ready for my trip to Vegas I have been seriously neglecting my blogging duties. I must learn how to multitask better! I skipped a few nights of cooking from the book due to not feeling well and also working on a few of my own recipes. If you haven't already check out my other food blog Bobbi's Bitchin' Kitchen. I was a little nervous that I might be getting sick right before the trip, but I am fine and ready to go!!

This past week I only made three of the recipes. We already talked about the Spanish Style Pork Chops from last Sunday, so now we are onto recipe #107 Turkey Club Super Mashers. Again, another recipe that called for turkey cutlets, which of course I can not find. I have just given up trying to find them and instead get chicken cutlets cut a bit thicker than normal if possible. I really don't think it makes a big difference as long as you don't over cook the chicken.

This recipe went over really well. Everyone liked it and although I was a bit nervous about the potatoes with the fire roasted tomatoes in them, even my picky one liked them. She told me she likes fire roasted tomatoes now, just not raw tomatoes. OK, note taken. Seth said the potatoes had a pizza flavor to them, but Kevin and I both just felt they really did remind us of a club sandwich. I wasn't sure about the watercress since I have never had it before, but it added a nice flavor. Something different from spinach. I think arugala would be nice as well. It would give kind of a peppery kick to the potatoes.

Whatever the potatoes tasted like, we all really loved them. The chicken was so tender we didn't even need a knife to cut it! This is a great recipe, nothing fancy, but nice and satisfying.

Turkey Club Super Mashers

  • 8 slices applewood smoked bacon
  • 4 large Idaho potatoes
  • salt
  • 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds turkey breast cutlets
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
  • 1 tablespoons EVOO
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons thyme leaves, chopped
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 cups, stemmed and chopped watercress (1 bunch)
  • 2 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped, or for extra smoky mashers, use 1 14 ounce can diced fire roasted tomatoes, drained
  • 4 scallions, chopped

Preheat the oven to 400. Arrange bacon on a slotted broiler pan and bake it for 15 minutes, or until evenly crisp. Cool, chop, and reserve.

While bacon cooks, peel the taters and cut them into small chunks. Place the potatoes in a pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling add salt, and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. 

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Season the cutlets with salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning. Add the EVOO to the skillet. Add the cutlets and cook for 4 minutes on each side, or until golden but not firm and dry. Transfer the cutlets to a platter and cover with foil. return the skillet to the heat and melt the butter in it. Add the flour and cook together for 1 minute, then whisk in the chicken stock. Bring to a bubble and reduce the heat to simmer. Season the sauce with salt, pepper, and fresh thyme. The sauce will take about 5 minutes to become thickened gravy.

Drain the potatoes, then return them to the hot pot. Add the sour cream and start mashing. Add enough milk to get the potatoes to the desired consistency. Season the super mashers with salt and pepper. Fold in the bacon, watercress, and tomatoes ("BLT") into the potatoes.

Pile up one fourth of the potatoes on each plate. Slice the cutlets and arrange on top of the potatoes. Cover the meat with pan gravy. Top the turkey club super mashers with chopped scallions and serve.

Serves 4

Turkey Cutlets on Foodista