Category Archives: Main Meals

Chicken Tetrazzini

I’ve had this recipe bookmarked for a while now. Actually to be more accurate, I have tons of recipes bookmarked that have caught my eye, but that I never seem to have enough time to try. When your in a hurry to get something on the table, you usually go for a reliable stand-by. Something you know is good and that you can make in a hurry. Well when I recently started going through my bookmarks, I was surprised at how many yummy sounding recipes I had collected, and I decided it was about time to start crossing them off my list. You will be seeing a lot more recipes from me as I start going through them. Once you try this great pasta dish, it will become a favorite. Its perfect for those who love the creaminess of a fettuccine but crave more substantial flavor. I love that it has chicken, mushrooms and peas!  With over 1000 reviews and a rating of five stars, you know it’s gotta be good right? It was. It was so rich and packed with flavor it inspired a rain of complements from my husband. This is a great, hearty dish that will fill you up during the winter months. Make it to impress that special someone and it won’t dissapoint!

 

 

 

 

Chicken Tetrazzini (adapted from Giada de Laurentis)

Ingredients

  • 9 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon dry (or fresh) thyme leaves
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups whole milk, room temperature
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream, room temperature
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 12 ounces linguine (I used fettuccine pasta)
  • 3/4 cup frozen peas
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1/4 cup dried Italian-style breadcrumbs

Directions

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Spread 1 tablespoon of butter over a 13 by 9 by 2-inch baking dish. Melt 1 tablespoon each of butter and oil in a deep large nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. Sprinkle the chicken with 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Add the chicken to the hot pan and cook until pale golden and just cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate to cool slightly. Coarsely shred the chicken into bite-size pieces and into a large bowl.

Meanwhile, add 1 tablespoon each of butter and oil to the same pan. Add the mushrooms and saute over medium-high heat until the liquid from the mushrooms evaporates and the mushrooms become pale golden, about 1-2 minutes. Add the onion, garlic, and thyme, and saute until the onion is translucent, about 8 minutes.Transfer the mushroom mixture to the bowl with the chicken.

Melt 3 more tablespoons butter in the same pan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk for 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk, cream, broth, nutmeg, remaining 1 3/4 teaspoons salt, and remaining 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Increase the heat to high. Cover and bring to a boil. Simmer, uncovered, until the sauce thickens slightly, whisking often, about 10 minutes.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the linguine and cook until it is tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 9 minutes. Drain. Add the linguine, sauce, peas, and parsley to the chicken mixture. Toss until the sauce coats the pasta and the mixture is well blended.

Transfer the pasta mixture to the prepared baking dish. Stir the cheese and breadcrumbs in a small bowl to blend. Sprinkle the cheese mixture over the pasta. Dot with the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter. Bake, uncovered, until golden brown on top and the sauce bubbles, about 25 minutes.

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Filed under Italian, Main Meals, Meat, Uncategorized

Spinach Artichoke Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

I love spinach artichoke dip and I love grilled cheese sandwiches.  So this recipe instantly got me salivating and ready to go.  It’s a great quick lunch or dinner and is pretty healthy especially if you use low fat cheese and yogurt in place of the sour cream.  It’s also really, really good.  REALLY good.  The key is getting the bread golden brown and crispy while allowing the cheese time to melt so that the inside is a creamy, gooey melty mix.  Could it be any easier to put together a crowd pleasing dinner?  After making this last minute for a couple friends and getting really good feedback, I think the answer is no.  Make this (frequently!) and enjoy.

Spinach Artichoke Grilled Cheese Sandwiches (adapted from A Couple Cooks)

Makes 2 sandwiches (scale up according to how many you need)
Fresh spinach – enough for about 3 cups chopped
Canned artichoke hearts – about 3 (around 6 ounces)
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons sour cream
Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
1 cup shredded cheese (I used mozarella, use any blend you like)
4 pieces bread (I used a white crusty bread, I think sourdough would work great)
Kosher salt
Butter or more olive oil

1  Dice the 2 cloves garlic. Chop the artichokes. Wash and stem the
spinach, then chop it coarsely.

2  Heat about 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet. Add the garlic and
saute for 30 seconds. Then add the spinach and a pinch of kosher salt,
and saute for a few minutes until just limp. Add the artichokes and
red pepper flakes (if you want a tiny bit of spiciness) and saute for
another minute or so, until heated through. Drain off any liquid from
the pan. Stir in 2 tablespoons sour cream and another pinch of kosher salt.

4  Spread butter (or olive oil) on one side of each of the 4 bread
pieces. Heat a griddle pan to medium high heat. Place 2 pieces of
bread on the griddle, buttered side down. On each piece, spread some
shredded cheese, the spinach artichoke filling, some more cheese (1/2
cup cheese per sandwich), and the other piece of bread. When the
bottom bread is browned, flip the sandwich and cook until the bread is
toasted and the cheese is melted.  Or, if you have a panini maker,
just assemble the sandwiches, butter or oil the maker on both sides
and toast the sandwiches in the maker until golden brown and cheese
looks enticingly melty.

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Filed under Cooking for Two, Healthy, Main Meals, Sandwiches, Vegetarian

Grilled Eggplant and Pepper Rocca Salad

As you can probably tell by the recipes on this blog, I really like roasted/grilled eggplants.  It just so happens we got a crate of fresh eggplants just waiting for me to use them up in delicious recipes.  I wanted to make a hearty and filling salad that was also really healthy and tasty.  This is what came to mind!  The combination of the grilled sweet peppers and the smokey eggplant with the saltiness of the feta cheese and the bite that comes from the rocca resulted in one of my favorite salads that I’ve made or tried.  Use whatever ingredients you have, experiment, and enjoy!
Grilled Eggplant and Pepper Rocca Salad (everylittlecrumb original)

Ingredients:

3 large eggplants

2 each of red, yellow, and green bell peppers

3 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

3 cups rocca (jarjeer)

Dressing:

1/2 cup olive oil

1/4 cup balsalmic vinegar

1 tablespoon honey

Pinch of salt and pepper

Method:

Cut the eggplant into 1/2 inch slices and set aside.  Quarter all of the bell peppers, or cut them into 1/8ths if you want a less chunky salad.  Toss all the above vegetables with the olive oil in a bowl, salt and pepper then using a large grill pan, grill eggplants first about 8 minutes each side or until golden brown and grilled throughout.  Repeat with the bell peppers in batches until all the vegetables are grilled.  As an alternative, you can roast all the vegetables on a baking tray in the oven at 400 degrees F (200 C) until golden brown and roasted, about 15 minutes a side.  When grilled/roasted vegetables have cooled, put all the washed rocca in the salad bowl you’ll be serving in, then scatter the vegetables on top.  Crumble the feta cheese on top, and top with the toasted pine nuts.  To make the dressing, add the olive oil gradually to the vinegar while whisking.  Whisk in the honey, and season with salt and pepper.  Top the salad with the dressing and toss to distribute.

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Filed under everylittlecrumb original, Healthy, Main Meals, Salads

Mama Mira’s Famous Lasagna

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I promise this is the only lasagna recipe that you will ever need. Its the perfect cheesy, meaty, hearty lasagna. Stuffed full of garlicky tomato sauce and creamy smooth béchamel sauce, it’s a super comforting dish, that gets requested more than any other dish I make. Its worth it to get the good parmesan, not the powder that comes in a can because it will give a great taste to the béchamel.

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Ingredients:

1 pack of lasagna noodles

shredded mozzarella

For the meat sauce:

  • 1/2 kilo ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon all spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • black pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt to taste
  • 2- 8 oz  (227 grams) cans tomato sauce
  • 1 cup tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup boiling water

For the béchamel:

  • 1/4 cup butter (half a stick)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup shredded parmesan
  • salt and pepper to taste

In a medium saucepan, saute onion in the vegetable oil until soft and translucent. Add the beef to brown.  Add the all spice, cinnamon, black pepper, and garlic. Once the beef is cooked through add the salt. Pour the tomato sauce, tomato paste, italian seasoning, garlic powder and brown sugar over the beef. Boil for 5 minutes. Add the water and simmer for 30 minutes.

To make the béchamel: melt butter with flour in a medium saucepan and stir until mixture becomes golden color (about 3 minutes). Pour the milk and cream into the pan (milk and cream should be warm), whisking continuously. Add the garlic, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Continue to whisk until the mixture has just began to thicken up, then turn off the heat and add the parmesan. (The sauce will continue to thicken up off the stove).

To assemble: Coat the bottom of the pyrex with a little of the béchamel so that the noodles wont stick. Then put one layer of noodles, top with 1/3 of the meat sauce, and then 1/3 of the béchamel. Put another layer of noodles, meat sauce and béchamel, then the final layer of noodles, meat sauce and béchamel. Top with the mozzarella cheese and bake in a 180C oven for 20 minutes. In the final 10 minutes  turn on the broiler to brown the top.

Enjoy!

-M

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by | October 23, 2012 · 10:00 am

Baked Orzo with Eggplant and Mozzarella

I love Ottolenghi.  It was one of my favorite food experiences in London, and I had AMAZING food experiences there.  The way the chefs manipulate vegetables and make healthy dishes taste so enticing and complex is masterful.  Whenever I see an Ottolenghi recipe, I know it’s something my family and I will love, especially when we are trying to eat a little healthier.  I also love my dad’s cooking…the man knows what he’s doing.  He throws in whatever strikes his whimsy, disregards a recipe more often then not and the end result is always something interesting and delectable.  So, this was the perfect combination-an Ottolenghi recipe as cooked by my dad.  This dish impressed us with its simple fresh flavors, and its ease in coming together.  For those of you who don’t know, orzo is a type of tiny pasta reminiscent of risotto, that absorbs flavors wonderfully.  This is a great autumn dish, filled with hearty vegetables like celery, eggplant, carrots and tomatoes.  It would work well with modifications, cube and sautee any vegetable you want to add and you can experiment.  We had some leftover ground beef and toasted pine nuts, and my dad threw them in.  Try adding feta cheese in addition to the mozarella with sundried tomatoes and olives.  Pumpkins and zucchini would work wonderfully, and this would habe been great with mushrooms.  This was  devoured and will definitely be repeated, probably with different ingredients each time.

Baked Orzo with Eggplant and Mozzarella
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen’s adaptation of a Yotam Ottolenghi recipe

Serves 4

1 large  eggplant, cut into 3/4-inch dice
Salt and black pepper
1/4 cup (60 ml) olive oil
1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 celery stalk, in a 1/4-inch dice
1 medium onion, finely diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
8 ounces (225 grams) orzo, a rice-shaped pasta, rinsed
1 teaspoon (6 grams) tomato paste (we upped this to a tablespoon)
1 1/2 cups (355 ml) vegetable stock (if you don’t have, use water, we ended up adding an extra 1/2-1 cup of water)
1 to 3 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped (We used dried)
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest or more to taste, up to the zest of a whole lemon
4 ounces (115 grams) mozzarella, firmer is better here, cut into 1/3-inch dice (we used shredded)
1 1/2 ounces (a generous 1/2 cup or 45 grams) parmesan, grated
3 medium tomatoes, diced

*My dad added 1 fresh jalapeno pepper, minced to the onions and garlic while cooking.  This gave it a great spicy flavor, omit if you like your food mild

Sprinkle your eggplant generously with salt and let it drain in a colander for 30 minutes. I used this time to get the rest of my ingredients ready. After 30 minutes, rinse it well and pat it dry on towels.

Preheat your oven to 350°F (175 C). Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the oil and once the oil is shimmering, add the eggplant. Fry for 8 minutes, stirring pieces occasionally. Using a slotted spoon or spatula, transfer them to paper towels to drain. Add celery and carrots to remaining oil and cook for 3 minutes before adding onion and garlic. Cook together for 5 more minutes on medium heat. Stir in the orzo and tomato paste and cook for two minutes more. Off the heat, add the oregano, mozzarella, parmesan, tomatoes, fried eggplant, lemon zest, 1 teaspoon table salt, many grinds of black pepper and the stock and mix well.

Transfer mixture to an 8×11-inch (about 2 quarts) ovenproof baking dish. Cover with foil and bake 20 minutes, then bake 20 minutes without the foil. (You can increase the ration of foil-on to foil-off time if you don’t like a crunchy pasta lid.) Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

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Filed under Healthy, Italian, Main Meals, Uncategorized, Vegetarian

Fall Pumpkin Recipes

There are some great recipes coming up this week, but before I get posting, I wanted to do another fall recipe roundup.  As Halloween looms closer and closer, pumpkins are taking over the food blogosphere.  For me, this is a very good thing because pumpkins are one of my favorite flavors for cooking and baking.  Their mild and creamy flavor makes them the perfect pairing to tangy cream cheese frosting, cinnamon and spices, and as the hearty backdrop of many savory dishes.  The appearance of pumpkin on menus once again serves to cement autumn’s presence in our lives, and I look forward to the slow but gradual advancement of winter-below you’ll find some recipes I am excited to try, and you should be too!

Pumpkin Cookies with Brown Butter Icing Brown Eyed Baker

Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins Brown Eyed Baker

Pumpkin Spice Latte Recipe Girl (Great way to use up extra pumpkin puree!)

Baked Pumpkin and Sour Cream Puddings Smitten Kitchen

Simple Pumpkin Cheesecake Trifles My Baking Addiction

Pumpkin Pie Bars Annie’s Eats

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls Smitten Kitchen

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes (I love flavored pancakes!) Joy the Baker

Pumpkin Risotto The New York Times

Pumpkin Soup The Pioneer Woman Cooks

Now go buy some pumpkins! (Or canned pumpkin puree, as I tend to)

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Filed under Desserts, Main Meals

Cheesesteak sandwiches

I’m not gonna call this a Philly cheesesteak because the people of Philadelphia are very protective over their cheese steak sandwiches. They have a special kind of cheese that goes with it, the meat is super thin, and this kind of meat is not readily available where we live. So I improvised and made a simple, easy, and delicious sandwich that is just bursting with flavor and cheesy goodness. It’s best to let the meat marinate in the steak seasoning overnight just so all that delicious flavor really soaks into the meat. However, if you don’t have the time you can just let the steak sit for about half an hour before you use it. Be sure to use good quality tender steaks for the best results.

Ingredients:

  • 500 gram steak (type up to preference) pounded thin and cut into strips
  • 2 tablespoons steak seasoning
  • 1 onion cut into rings
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1 red pepper
  • 2 cups mushrooms sliced
  • 1 cup provolone cheese shredded
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese shredded
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 small baguettes

First spread the steak seasoning over the steak pieces cover with plastic wrap and let marinate in the fridge for a day.

Add oil to a frying pan and fry the beef until cooked. Remove the steak on to a separate plate. Add a little more oil to the pan and saute the onions and peppers until soft. Add the mushrooms and cook until soft. Remove onto a separate plate.

Mince the garlic and mix with mayonaise, spread on both sides of the baguette. Sprinkle the provolone cheese and mozzarella on 1 side of the bread. Put the mixture of steak, onions, peppers and mushrooms on the other side. Put the sandwich under the broiler in the oven until cheese is melted and delicously oozing. Remove and enjoy!

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Filed under Main Meals, Meat, Sandwiches