Recipe Review | Ina Garten Lemon Chicken Breasts

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As stated in my 2015 goals video, I have decided to try one new recipe each and every week this year (or just about every week). First up is the Ina Garten Lemon Chicken Breasts Recipe, which I found on foodnetwork.com.

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First up, I have to confess. I have tried this recipe two times since first giving it a go in the second week of January (yes, this review was a long time coming). I do not have a love affair with chicken like most southerners because well, I just have not seen it as incredibly exciting due to boneless skinless chicken breast burn out. It was not until I tried this recipe that my faith in chicken was renewed. I know that bone-in or skin on chicken is truly the only way to go in the world of serious flavor, so I was immediately drawn to this recipe.

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I created the marinade as instructed and I must say it went just as well for me as it did the Barefoot Contessa. This recipe is definitely high on the easy meter because the prep really only consisted of zesting a lemon, and chopping up garlic and thyme!

 

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My kitchen smelled delightful and the taste of the marinade alone was enough to make me yip with surprised glee! The first time I tried the recipe I poured the marinade straight into my baking dish and continued as directed, the second time I marinated the chicken for four hours before throwing the chicken in the dish to bake.

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I paired the chicken with broccoli the first time and asparagus the second time, no grains necessary for such a large piece of chicken. Let’s just say, my taste buds died and went to heaven! I was so very surprised at how delightful this recipe turned out. I really do not enjoy seriously lemony tasting chicken, and I have tried lemon chicken recipes that leave me disappointed. The marinade has such a wonderful balance of flavors that I saved it and poured it over Quinoa the next day! If you are looking for something new to try, give this recipe a whirl!

Tip: The second time I prepared this recipe I poured a drizzle of honey in the baking dish before placing the chicken on top. That addition to the recipe earned it a permanent place in my personal recipe book.

Be sure to leave a link to your favorite recipes below!!!!!

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Two Chicken Curry Recipe’s For Review

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I tried another Eat East Indian recipe. This time the recipe called for chicken drumsticks, which I rarely use, so I decided to give it a go. For this recipe, the preparation was quick and easy, I like to put the spice portions on a plate before cooking as this ensures speediness when cooking. The only thing that frustrated me about this recipe, is well,, the lack of a recipe! Well, I winged it, using mostly a tsp for each spice, 1/2 for the hot one’s, and 1 tbsp of salt (which was too much).

I enjoyed the taste of the curry, but I will not make this again as I feel it would have been better had there been more guidance in the spice mixture department. Plus, the cooking times she suggests are off, if I wasn’t a half way decent cook, I would have burned the spices long before getting the tomatoes in the pot. She says to wait five minutes after adding the potatoes, but I did as she did instead of as she said because I know everything would have burned.

Like I wrote, it came out tasty, but it was a little salty as I put in too much salt. I ate my chicken and potatoes on a bed of brown basmati rice.

 

This second recipe came out much better as the ingredients are listed. I let the chicken marinate for about two hours while I prepped, and put some things away around the house. This recipe was quite easy and quick to make, which is a major plus. I used boneless skinless chicken thighs as I prefer that to any other type of boneless chicken. This was a spicy dish, and really pleased my palette. It was nice to use cloves in a recipe as I rarely use them outside of making cookies during the christmas season. I also enjoyed the fact that a green bell pepper is a part of the recipe, which means I am getting a vegetable serving without the need for a side dish.

This recipe is spot on, quick and one that I will make again. Once again, I ate my chicken curry on a bed of brown basmati rice.

Two Recipe Reviews

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Pasta with Veggies

Lately I have been trying out new recipes for lunch each week, so this week I tried a vegetable and pasta recipe mix. I used brown rice angel hair pasta and my veggies were broccoli, red bell pepper, green onion, and tomato. I followed the recipe, even adding some freshly grated parmesan cheese on top.

Once finished, the result was just “meh.” Nothing spectacular, but also not bland or unappetizing. I made enough for 4 lunch sessions, so I will finish the left overs tomorrow, and I will not make this recipe again. Healthy and tasty pasta recipes seem to be challenging. I mean spaghetti with red sauce is always an easy option, but I am looking for variety. Any suggestions?

Vegetable Medley

Some time two weeks ago I had all of these vegetables in my fridge and I said to myself, how about a veggie only dish, something asian. So I took stock of what I had, and I almost just threw some oil in a pan, threw in the veggies an ate them. Instead, I said to myself, check out Youtube, see what creative ways people are cooking their fresh veggies. I wanted something simple, tasty, easy and versatile (meaning it wouldn’t matter which veggies I used). After many videos, I decided to try this approach:

I did take a quick trip to the store for fresh ginger, otherwise I had everything else in my house. I used peanut oil as my base oil because I have it. I was very happy to have something to use my peanut oil for as I have had it for a year and only used it twice prior to this dish. In an attempt to come as close to the veggies used in the video, I used broccoli, carrots, yellow bell pepper, red cabbage, and onion. I didn’t add celery because I do not like the taste of cooked celery.

The first time I made this, I followed the video exactly, and I was surprised at how the veggies came out. They were the perfect consistency, not too hard and not too soft, yet flavorful. Who knew oil infused in ginger could produce such wonderful results! The second time (and yes I have made this two times so far), I added a couple of squirts of soy sauce to the finished product just to experiment with flavor. Next time, I plan to use oyster sauce and see what happens.

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If you can’t tell by the review above, I LOVE this vegetable medley, and the only calories come from the oil (I’ll speak on why I do not care about calories in another post). Initially, I was concerned that this plate of veggies would not fill me up enough to be satisfied, and then once I finished prep I wasn’t sure that I could eat all of the veggies in front of me, but in the end, its a perfect dinner portion. Like I stated above, I plan to do this again, this weekend, and use oyster sauce, this dish takes no time to make, the prep is the most time consuming part, aside from prep it takes about 7 minutes total to make this dish.

The vegetables aren’t pulverized in this vegetable medley, so I consider this a seriously healthy and tasty dinner option.

Recipe Review:East Indian Chicken Curry

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On my last grocery shopping trip I bought a good bit of chicken because it was on sale. I froze everything except the chicken thighs because I knew I was going to make SOMETHING from them when I got home. My favorite way to eat chicken (when not considering fried) is sauced or heavily spiced, which for me generally means Indian cooking. I of course turned to handy dandy Youtube and came across this video/channel:

I had everything for the dish, so I gave it a go. Boy oh boy was I happy I made this dish, its delicious and more than I expected! I really felt like it was a dish I could have gotten from a local Indian restaurant. I always use plain greek yogurt for my Indian dishes, meaning that it is a healthy dish. I also used coconut oil for the initial cooking. I paired the curry with Brown Basmati Rice because it soaks up flavor very well and is just as nutritious as other brown grain rice.  The dish is actually quite simple to make and the flavors just meld together so beautifully. Its not spicy/hot at all, so I would probably add more green chili’s next time because I LOVE hot food. Otherwise the dish was perfect as is, which for me, is rare.

I would make this dish again in a heart beat, but instead I plan to try one of the lentil dishes as my lunch entree for next week. This Youtube channel is a very welcome find and one I plan to take full advantage of.

Quinoa and Kidney Bean Salad

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Saturday evening, while making my grocery list, I almost put some chicken on the list, in order to make the Zuzka Light sexy abs recipe before I said to myself, why buy when you have plenty of stuff in your pantry? I walked over to the pantry, opened the doors and said to myself, you haven’t eaten Quinoa in awhile, and you haven’t used your beans yet, lets see what we can find. During my recipe search , I stumbled across this video:

I prepared the Quinoa in a water and oj mixture, and I made fresh beans from my Mason Jar dry bean stash. Let me just take a moment to say that the Mason Jar legumes, grains and beans idea is the best idea I have had yet. I truly use something from those jars at least once a day, ok back to the topic at hand. I had pretty much everything needed for the recipe already in my home, so after my grocery trip, I put some beans on to cook (I soaked them the night before.  While the Quinoa cooked, I chopped away, added spices, and by the time the Quinoa was done, I was done preparing the dish. The only change I made was to the parsley, I prefer Cilantro, and since she suggested substitutions, I chose to take her suggestion.

I made this dish for my lunch entree of the week. Yesterday I ate it cold and today I ate it warm, and I have to say I prefer it warm, but it was good cold. All in all, the spices really make this dish taste delicious, and the combo of protein and veggies is filling and seriously nutritious. This weeks lunch sides include Cherries, Cucumber (with salt and olive oil), Bell Pepper (Green and Red) and Hummus for dipping. I’ll talk about my work snack Thursday.

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A Quick and Easy Couscous Dinner Review

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One night last week I was trying to decide what to eat for dinner, and instead of being proactive and walking into my kitchen, I procrastinated by hopping on my computer to watch Youtube videos. During my perusal, I came across a new Zuzka Light video in which she shared a new recipe:

As I was watching I realized that I had almost all of the ingredients for this recipe sitting in my kitchen, as a result I decided to get off of my bum and make this Sexy Abs recipe. The only ingredient I did not have was canned tomatoes, but I did have half of a tomato in my fridge which I had previously used for a salad, so I simply substituted half a real tomato for the canned tomato. I would have used a whole tomato if I had one, but it did not make a difference in the recipe. I even mixed together her spice mixture because I like to follow the recipe the first time, and then make any necessary changes the next time if I decide to make it again.  Well, of course I made the dish and was pleasantly surprised.

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form my Instagram (Missmusic12)

This dish packs great flavor, and its not that healthy food type of flavor, no its just good flavor in general. The spice mixture is really quite delightful and I did not even realize that there was no additional salt in the recipe until I was half of the way through eating because it did not need any extra salt. I made four portions from this recipe, I ate it twice as is, and I added the mixture along with lettuce for a wrap the next two times. It was so delicious! As far as quick goes, well once you start cooking, it is quick, but I have to say its not a 10 minute meal, more like 20, so its still quick, just not as simple one pot meal quick. Was it easy, quite so, I mean there were no special techniques involved, which makes this ideal for any level cook. I will make this again and I encourage you to give it a go and tell me what you think!