Sunday, March 27, 2011

A Classic from Trader Joes

Well, its the Sunday night before the start of "Close Out."  For those of you who don't work at a fitness center or gym, its the last 4 days of the month where we work 12 hour days, 4 days in a row.  Its a great time for business, not such a great time for home cooked meals worthy of my blog.  So tonight, I leave you with a delicious easy treat straight from Trader Joes, I won't be cooking for the next 4 days so look for a new meal on Friday!

Trader Joes Orange Chicken- spiced up Kristie Style!

What you need:
1 bag of Trader Joes Orange Chicken- Frozen.
2 Packets of Trader Joes White Jasmine Rice- Frozen.
Baby Bok Choy- enough to serve 2-3 people.
Fresh Garlic- 6-7 cloves
Sea Salt

Follow the instructions for the Orange Chicken.  I usually keep the oven a bit warmer, around 425-450 instead of the called for 400 degrees.  This makes the chicken nice and crispy!

Bok Choy:
Peal each leaf apart, rinse in cold water- be sure to be thorough in cleaning as there is usually dirt deep inside.
Chop the stems from the leaves.
Finely chop the garlic.
In a large skillet, two circles around the pan with Extra Virgin Olive Oil. 
Saute the Olive Oil and Garlic for about 30 seconds, add the Bok Choy Stems and saute for another minute.  Lastly add the Bok Choy Leaves and saute for another 30 seconds - 1 minute.
Turn off the heat and cover with tin foil.  The bok choy should remain bright green and the steams should still be crunchy, while the leaves just begin to look wilted.

Microwave the rice per the package instructions.

Mix the chicken with the orange sauce, place over rice and decorate the sides of the bowl with your beautifully delicious Bok Choy.

Enjoy this one, it only takes about 30 minutes or less and all the ingredients come straight from your neighborhood Trader Joes!


Saturday, March 26, 2011

Lemon Sage Chicken with Mushroom & Broccolini

Hello!  On Friday night I decided to try this out and modify.  It is out of my latest Taste of Home Magazine (Thanks Gram for the subscription).

Also, a tip on my measurements... they aren't exact. When I cook my meals I "eye ball it"  baking its a bit more precise... you can add or subtract based on your personal taste.  This way the meal is always perfectly customized!

Lemon Sage Chicken with Mushroom & Broccolini:

What I used:
4 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
4 Eggs- wisked
handfull of parmesan and ramano cheese blend
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
a spoon full of dried basil
sea salt to taste
pepper to taste
about a half cup of flour
Extra Virgin Olive Oil

For the Sauce:
2 Shallots finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
spoon full of finely chopped parsley
spoon full of sage leaves
small handful of Parmesan cheese
3 lemons, juiced and the zest from 1 lemon (courtesy of Rachelle's Garden)
1/2 cup plus a little heavy whipping cream
3 TBSP butter- cubed
1/4 plus a little chicken broth- you could substitute white wine or light beer for a variety of flavors.

Flatten chicken and coat with flour
Combine the eggs, cheese and seasonings in a shallow bowl
Once you've coated the chicken with the flour, dip in the egg mixture
In a large skillet brown the chicken in oil (2 circles around the pan) brown on both sides (2-3 minutes per side) and transfer to a greased cookie pan or glass baking dish.  Bake uncovered at 400 for 15-20 minutes.

In the drippings, saute the shallot, add the garlic and saute about another minute or 2. Add the chicken broth (or wine / light beer), lemon juice, herbs and lemon zest.  Cook over medium heat until the liquid is reduced by about half. Add the cream and cook until thickened.  Stir in the melted butter until melted. Add the Parmesan cheese and cook for another 30 seconds or so.

Once the chicken is done, pour the sauce over the chicken!

On the side:
Broccolini and Mushrooms.
Saute another finely chopped shallot, a few cloves of garlic in olive oil.  Once the Shallot and garlic are tender, add your choice of mushroom and broccolini.  Saute for 3-5 minutes. Just before this was finished I drizzled a little Balsamic Vinegar on top... added a great flavor!

Enjoy this one, Nick sure did, there were no left overs on this meal!

Well, it's here!

I've created this blog to share with you the joys of cooking and baking!  I've been exploring new recipes lately and enjoying every minute of it!

I've been inspired by several people in my life to bake, cook and entertain!  Grandma Dorio taught me to bake and cook at a very young age- standing on the red stool in her kitchen, stiring the dough, licking the spoon, and frying the eggplant!  Grandma Meloney's creamed tuna and tomato soup cake.  Aunt Patty's love for delicious sweets and her tips on how to make an amazingly perfect Cheesecake not to mention helping her decorate cookie cakes!  Rachelle and Nicole two of my friends who have inspired me to learn new recipes and bake like there is no tomorrow. Last but not least, my mom for always making home made meals for our family growing up- my mom is the perfect example of an extraordinary mother and wife always feeding us healthy tasty meals.  Thanks mom for making us eat our vegetables and drink our milk!

Enjoy the recipes, and please let me know what you think if you make something I post about!

Cheers to friends, family and food!!!