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Marinated Greek Chicken

5 Jul

Greek Chicken with Tzatziki

Introduction:

Hello world! After yet another hiatus, we’re back at it again. This time, coming straight from the Cuppycake Kitchen, a tried and true simply delectable dish. Easy to whip up, and incredibly delicious, it will have you craving more. (Serve it for guests, and they’ll think you spent hours slaving away, it’s THAT good.) The marinated chicken can be plated over a salad, or stuffed into a pita, but we always enjoy it smothered in Tzatziki Sauce. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

Marinade

  • Juice from 3 lemons
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon oregano, finely chopped or dried
  • 4 large cloves of garlic, pressed
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 lbs chicken breast

Tzatziki Sauce

  • 6 oz greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled, seeded and shredded
  • 1 large clove of garlic, pressed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1-2 teaspoons oregano, finely chopped or dried

Instructions:

1.) Combine marinade ingredients (minus the chicken) in a large bowl. Use fresh oregano if possible, it has much better flavor than the dried variety. When zesting the lemon, try to only get the yellow of the peel, the white fleshy part is very bitter.

2.) Stir everything together and either add your chicken to the bowl or put everything in a ziploc bag to marinate in the fridge. We’d recommend marinating for at least two hours, the longer the better.

3.) Shortly before you’re ready to cook the chicken, combine tzatziki sauce ingredients in a medium sized bowl. Peel the cucumber and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Shred the remaining part using a fine grater.

4.) Cook the chicken in a frying pan or on the grill, both come out delicious. You’ll want to use high heat for not a long time so as to brown it up nicely while keeping it juicy. Time depends on how thick you cut your chicken (obviously) so use your judgement. We typically do cutlets, but cubes on skewers would be fantastic as well.

This recipe should serve four easily and scales well. Dig in!

You can get the printer friendly version here.

Grilled Caprese Sandwiches

6 Aug

Introduction:

A yummy hybrid of grilled cheese, caprese salad and PESTO! Perfect for a quick dinner, lunch or even some days breakfast. There really aren’t any measurements for this as quantities will depend on the size of your bread and your personal preferences. Don’t be intimidated by how good this looks.

Ingredients:

  • Pesto (your favorite recipe/brand – we usually use Classico)
  • Fresh Tomato, thinly sliced
  • Mozzarella Cheese
  • Bread (we like to use Italian or artisan bread)

Instructions:

1.) Slice up your bread, tomato and cheese. Spread pesto on two slices of bread. Lay cheese on top of pesto on both slices.

2.) The ideal way to cook these buddies is to use a toaster oven. If you don’t have a toaster oven, you can still join in the fun. Try using a frying pan with a cover on it to help melt the cheese. Toast your two slices of bread side by side, cheese facing up.

3.) When cheese looks hot and bubbly (roughly 5-7 minutes), remove one slice from toaster (for safety’s sake) and place tomato on it. Put it back in and toast for an additional 5 minutes or until sufficiently toasted.

If you’d like to print out a copy, head over here.

PS – Yes we did just teach you how to cook a grilled cheese 🙂

Chicken Bacon Avocado Quesadillas

16 Jan

Introduction:

While stumbling for recipes across the vast expanses of the inter-web (one of Emster’s favorite past-times), we found this idea for dinner. Of course it sounded so good, that we immediately made it and ate it all! It is so delicious and such a great combination of flavors, there is simply no need to improve upon the concept. Anyways, let’s give credit where credit is due…thank you Kevin and Amanda for a great recipe. Together we can spread the Avocado-y Bacon-y goodness one blog post at a time.

Ingredients:

  • tortilla shells
  • 1 lb chicken
  • 1/2 lb bacon
  • 1-2 avocados
  • 1 large onion
  • salt
  • pepper
  • garlic powder
  • onion powder

*This recipe makes about 4-5 quesadillas.

Instructions:

1.) Cook bacon.

2.) Cut chicken into bite size pieces. Season to taste with salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder. Saute chicken in the frying pan with olive oil and onions until chicken is thoroughly cooked and onions are translucent. Drain chicken and pat dry.

3.) Peel and slice avocados. Shred cheese and wipe pan clean.

4.) Over medium-high heat, lightly grease the pan (butter, etc.) and place tortilla in the center. Place chicken, bacon, avocado and cheese on your tortilla. If you’re going to spread it over the entire tortilla, make sure not to put too much filling (we learned this the hard way). You can also load up only half with filling and fold the other half over.

5.) Flip quesadilla over until both sides are nicely browned.

6.)Serve with sour cream, salsa, or any other toppings you might like!

Just in case anyone actually uses these printer friendly versions, here you go!

Garlic Spinach and Bean Tortellini

29 Nov

Introduction:

Hooray reader suggestions! One of our devoted readers asked for “tortellini and a yummy sauce”, so hopefully she likes what we’ve come up with!

Over here at TCF, we’ve gone spinach crazy the last couple of weeks and try to include spinach in a lot of our meals. For those who aren’t aware, spinach is a great veggie to cook with. It’s very good for you and also tastes great (especially with garlic!). Cannellini beans also have their own pocket aces, protein and fiber! We have two nutritious pros going for this meal, add the fact that it’s superbly simple and tastes divine…what are you waiting for?

You can also do this recipe with other pasta besides tortellini, but if you do then we’d recommend adding some type of cheese to add some great flavor.

 Ingredients:

  • crushed red pepper
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 Tbsp butter/margarine
  • 1 large onion
  • 6 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb (16 oz) spinach
  • 1 can cannelloni beans (15.5 oz)
  • 1 package tortellini (13 oz)

*This recipe serves 2-3 people.

Instructions:

1.) Put water on to boil. Proceed to the next step, but remember to add tortellini when the water has come to a boil.

2.) Dice onions. Saute with 1 Tbsp butter. Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.

3.) Once onions become slightly translucent add minced garlic. Cook on low for 8-10 minutes until garlic becomes soft and the same color as onions.

4.) Drain beans and rinse with cold water. Add to onion-garlic mixture.

5.) Add washed spinach. Cover frying pan, and let everything cook for a few minutes until spinach is soft.

6.) Mix with cooked tortellini and enjoy your pretty easy, super cheap, incredibly delicious dinner!

The printer friendly version can be found here.

Buffalo Chicken Calzone

6 Oct

Introduction:

If you’re ever in the Boston area and looking for a delicious meal, stop by Ma Magoo’s for their buffalo chicken calzone! Seriously one of the best things either of us has ever had. We always try to share this fantastic food with everyone we can whenever we’re in town.

After a lot of “we should make this some time”s, we finally got around to actually trying it out. This time we just used a rotisserie chicken from the supermarket. Next time, however, we’re going to try mixing cooked breaded chicken cutlets with hot sauce. Serve with a big salad or some kind of veggie, because on it’s own this is really not a healthy meal.

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ cups shredded chicken
  • ⅔ cup hot sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 16 oz pizza dough
  • 2 Tbsp flour (for rolling out the dough)
  • 1 Tbsp cornmeal (optional)

*This recipe serves 3-4 people.

 Instructions:

1.) If you aren’t using a rotisserie chicken, boil 2-3 chicken breasts for 20 minutes (until they are no longer pink inside). Shred the chicken and mix with the hot sauce. Feel free to add more/less hot sauce to your own liking.

2.) Preheat the oven to 400F. Roll out or stretch the dough on a lightly floured surface so that it’s circular and roughly 16” in diameter. – The flour prevents the dough from sticking to your counter.

3.) Sprinkle a layer of cheese down on one half of the circle. Next, add a layer of your buffalo chicken goodness. Top it off with another layer of cheese.

4.) Fold the dough in half to cover your toppings. Spread a little water along the bottom edge of the dough to make the seal stick as you press the seams together. Cut a few slits in the top of the calzone to allow venting. Spray your pan with nonstick spray and sprinkle with cornmeal. – The cornmeal helps prevent the bottom of the calzone from getting soggy.

5.) Bake calzone for 20-30 minutes or until golden brown.

Printer friendly version can be found over here.

Shepherd’s Pie

15 Sep

Introduction:

Now that school is starting again (or work for those “grownups” out there) and summer has come to an end, we’re all looking for easy delicious dinner ideas. Let’s be real, if you’re at all like us at TCF, you’re always looking for quick and yummy meal ideas! Potatoes, corn, ground beef – how can you go wrong? Just add a veggie and you’re all set with a soon to be family favorite!

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb beef
  • 3-4 large potatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ Tbsp onion powder
  • ½ Tbsp garlic powder
  • ½ Tbsp salt
  • ½ Tbsp pepper
  • 1 can of corn
  • ¼ c milk
  • 1 T butter

*This recipe serves 3-4 people. It can easily be scaled up or down. The pictures that follow show a double recipe.

Instructions:

1.) Cut potatoes into bite sized pieces; leave on the skins for some extra flavor and nutrition if you’re cool with that. While you’re at it chop up the onion too.

2.) Place your cut potatoes into a pot of water so that potatoes are just covered by the water. Boil with salt on high heat for about 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender when stuck with a fork.

3.) While potatoes are cooking, preheat your oven to 350F. In a large frying pan, sautee the onions and ground beef with seasonings (Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper). Cook meat until it is browned throughout. When it’s done, taste test and add more seasonings as needed.

4.) When your potatoes are done boiling, drain the water and get ready to MASH! If you have an electric mixer you can use that, or a plain old hand masher is more than fine too. Add the butter and milk and get mashing/mixing. Continue mashing/mixing until the potatoes reach your desired consistency. You can add in more milk or butter if you need. They should be somewhat creamy, but some lumps are probably okay too. Feel free to mix in some garlic powder to your potatoes too for a tasty addition.

5.) Finally it’s time to combine your ingredients and find out if the total is greater than the sum of the parts. First layer the bottom of an 8×8 pan with the meat. Add the corn on top, trying to make sure it is evenly spread. Lastly come the potatoes! Once you have layered, put the dish in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes (or until you can’t stand the delicious smell anymore and just HAVE to eat). Enjoy 🙂

Printer friendly version can be found over here.

Chicken Kabobs

10 Aug

Introduction:

As summer is drawing to a close, we’re all trying to get a few last barbecues in before it starts getting cold again. Kabobs are a nice way to change things up and can be very versatile depending on the ingredients you have on hand. For this meal we had peppers, onions and chicken, but you can really use whatever you have available.

Ingredients:

  • chicken breasts
  • green and red peppers
  • onions
  • skewers (very important)
  • BBQ sauce
  • Italian dressing (or homemade concoction)

Instructions:

1.) In a pan/bowl/water holding device, let skewers soak in water for at least a half hour so that they don’t burn when you put them on the grill.

2.) Cut up your chicken into roughly one-inch cubes. Slice up your onion into either sixths or eighths. Lastly, cut your peppers so that they’re kind of the same size/shape as your chicken pieces.

3.) Get the grill going on medium heat. Now you can begin arranging the pieces on the skewers. It’s a good idea to put the veggies and meat on different skewers since they cook at different rates. Doing so will allow you to make your dish vegetarian if you have mixed company (that is, veggie AND meat eaters). Also, put your BBQ sauce and/or Italian dressing in separate bowls so that you can brush them on the kabobs later. If you’d like, you can marinate your chicken before putting them on the grill.

See Reed's Feet?

4.) Now you’re ready to start grilling. If you’re worried about the food sticking to the grill plates, feel free to spray some cooking spray down first. Be careful though, as the cooking spray is flammable. Throw the veggies on first since they’re going to take a little more time than the chicken (15-30 minutes, depending on how you like ‘em). Apply dressing to the veggies and close grill lid. After about 8 minutes, rotate your veggies and apply dressing to the other side. If the outsides are cooking too quickly, lower the heat on the grill. Cook until soft and slightly charred, rotating as needed.

5.) After removing your veggies, it’s time for the chicken. Put the chicken skewers on the grill and brush BBQ sauce onto the top side. Close the lid again and let cook for about 5 minutes. Check on the goods and rotate if necessary; apply more BBQ sauce (the more the merrier). If you’re not familiar with cooking chicken, the key is for there to be no pink in the middle. Since we’re using pretty small pieces, 15 minutes should be long enough.

6.) Remove everything from the grill and turn off the heat. Serve and enjoy your meal, you deserve it!

 

Printer friendly version here!