SO much has been going on around my house that it seems cooking and blogging has taken a backseat, something I really hate. So you know that making a good meal (and a BUDGET meal) last night made me happy. My kitchen smelled wonderful and actually sitting down to a tasty meal was a breath of fresh air!
This recipe is easy peasy! No stress, whip it together, and enjoy. It is a recipe for 4 but if you, like me, are cooking for two most of the time now it is a great recipe to give you leftovers. The chicken is so juicy and makes wonderful sandwiches or you could throw it in a nice soup with the leftover roasted veggies.
Last week was Kevin’s daughter’s 18th birthday. Ever since my kids were young they knew that on their birthday they got to request anything they wanted for dinner. What is funny (or somewhat annoying) is that with all of the meals I cook and the variety of food I work with doesn’t seem to matter to them. You would think they would request something extravagant or gourmet. Nope, not my kids, you know what they request more often than not? Chili Mac! Yup good old chili with some mac and cheese thrown in. They can’t get enough of it! When they were little, before I started this culinary voyage of mine, I would actually make a box of mac and cheese and throw in a can of chili and BOOM that was dinner. Once I started experimenting and trying to make things healthier I decided to change it up by making my own cheese sauce and chili. Ummm that was a mistake. They took one look at it and asked me what it was. I told them it was what they had requested. Their reply? No it’s not. *sigh* I give up!!
So you can imagine my surprise when I asked Dakota what she wanted for her birthday dinner and her reply was “I don’t know, something with broccoli in it”. WOW you mean I actually get to cook something? Her only other request was no mushrooms. OK, I can work with that. So I set my mind to work thinking of what she might enjoy. I though about making my Chicken Divan but was afraid it wouldn’t be enough for everyone. Then I remembered she liked Italian food. Hhhmmm something with pasta. I already had chicken and broccoli on the brain so it seemed a logical choice to add my garlic Alfredo sauce to it and put it over some fettuccine. The original Alfredo recipe I came up with included mushrooms so of course I omitted those. I also doubled the sauce recipe because I was making a whole pound of pasta and the last time I made it I used it as a sauce to just cover my Chicken Lasagna Roll Ups.
I was a bit nervous because I rarely get to cook for her. She doesn’t live with us, so pretty much the only time I get to cook for her is at the holidays. I really wanted her meal to be something special and memorable. I guess I was silly to worry because she, along with the rest of us, loved this dish! I would suggest a small side salad to go along with it but that wasn’t on the requested menu plan so we had some garlic bread on the side.
This recipe is super simple and full of flavor. I hope you will give it a try. Maybe for a special family meal?
I was looking for a nice inexpensive recipe to make for the family. I ran across a recipe for Chicken Divan and it looked wonderful. I nice one dish meal that I thought the whole family would love. Since I make a lot of chicken I thought this was a nice way to use it without it being a typical Chicken with a side dish meal.
I didn’t put this in as a Bobbi on a Budget recipe just because some people don’t have cooking sherry readily available. However, you can usually pick up a bottle for about $5.00 and it is a great thing to have around for recipes. It will last you forever. I keep sherry, white vermouth, Marsala wine, and white wine around just for cooking. But if you want a substitute for the sherry and don’t have any of the above (or prefer a non alcoholic ingredient) you can use some apple cider vinegar. It will give it a different flavor profile but will give it a bit of that bite that the sherry gives it. Just taste it and adjust according to your preference. Other things in the recipe, like Parmesan cheese, are always in my fridge or pantry as well.
The consensus on this recipe was that it was a keeper. There were plenty of oohhh’s and aahhhh’s and OhhEmmGeee’s. The sounds that make a food blogger very happy!
2 large boneless skinless chicken breast halves
(about 1 lb.)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
3 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 large head broccoli (about 2 lbs.), stemmed and
broken into 1″–2″ florets
5 tbsp. butter
1⁄4 cup flour
1 cup Chicken Stock
1 cup milk
3 tbsp. sherry
1⁄8 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1⁄2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
1⁄2 cup heavy cream
Season chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken and cook, turning once, until golden brown and just cooked through, 13–15 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate; let cool slightly. Cut chicken lengthwise on the bias into 1⁄4″-thick slices and set aside.
Meanwhile, put broccoli into a large pot, cover with salted water, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until barely tender, 2–3 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Preheat oven to 375°. Rub the inside of a 2-quart casserole dish with 1 tbsp. of the butter; set aside. Melt remaining 4 tbsp. butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Gradually pour in stock and milk while whisking constantly. Cook until very thick, about 10 minutes. Add salt and pepper, sherry, nutmeg, and 1⁄4 cup of the cheese; stir until cheese melts, about 1 minute. Remove cheese sauce from heat and let cool slightly.
Arrange broccoli in the prepared dish in a single layer ; sprinkle with remaining 1⁄4 cup cheese. Arrange chicken evenly over top. In a large bowl, beat the heavy cream to soft peaks; fold into sauce. Pour sauce over chicken. Bake, with a baking sheet underneath to catch any drips, until golden brown and bubbling, about 30 minutes.
With Thanksgiving coming up I have been on the search for tasty side dishes that might be not the traditional foods we are used to. We all love broccoli here, something I never thought I would say (thank goodness for developing pallets as the kids got older) so my thoughts of course jumped to this versatile veggie.
I wanted to make sure it was flavorful but easy to make. I mean who wants to be slaving away in the kitchen all day on Thanksgiving when everyone else is enjoying some wine and being social right? I like to come up with sides that you can either make ahead and reheat right before the meal or, ones that will take just a few moments to whip up at the last minute. This recipe is simple and easy to make but fits that bill. You will be able to enjoy the day AND get a meal on the table that everyone will love!
We enjoy a lot of garlic here, if you prefer you can reduce the amount of garlic to suit your families tastes.
- 1 pound broccoli
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 large cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 large pinch dried red chili flakes, or to taste
- Kosher salt to taste
- 1 1/2 pounds small potatoes (recommended: Yukon gold)
- 1 small head broccoli
- 1 cup milk (or chicken stock to make it even lighter)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 1/2 cups low fat shredded sharp Cheddar
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Halve the potatoes and add to a large pot. Cover with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook the potatoes for 10 minutes while you trim and chop broccoli into 1/2-inch dice. Add the broccoli to the potatoes and cook for 5 minutes more. Drain and return to the hot pot to dry. Stir in the milk, butter and cheese and mash until the cheese melts into potatoes and broccoli. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and transfer to a serving bowl, to serve.
Rachael Ray Wednesday – Mostly Green Curry Over Coconut Jasmine Rice
Well dinner was supposed to be Italian Style Garlic Shrimp. Sounds yummy no? Well, we still don’t know since Miss Forgetful over here forgot one of the ingredients for the recipe. Well actually I didn’t forget it I eerrrrrr I drank it. It called for white wine and I, not realizing I needed it for this recipe, drank the last glass of it a few nights ago. I guess that will teach me to pay attention right?
So here I am, in a bit of a panic, it is time to start cooking and I have no idea what I am going to make. My son Seth was here and his answer of course was to order pizza, ummm no.
Now I grab my cookbook and see what recipe I have the ingredients for. OK, Mostly Green Curry Chicken over Coconut Jasmine Rice. Do I have everything I need for it? BINGO gang we have a winner!!
This was a wonderful finish to a crazy chaotic start. I wasn’t sure how I was going to feel about this one. I have only cooked with coconut milk once before, a parchment wrapped chicken with veggies in coconut milk, and it just didn’t do anything for me. But I jumped in feet first to get this one done, determined it was going to be good. WOW was I right! Not only was it good, it was fantastic! Kevin ate all of his bowl and finished mine, and Seth had quite a bit as well.
I stayed close to the recipe on this one. I switched a yellow bell pepper for the green one, but hey the recipe said “mostly” green right? I used a large jalapeño pepper and finely chopped it. I am not sure if it was a typo or the step was just omitted for some reason, but it only says to cut it in half and seed it. Possibly I was supposed to use it in the cooking and then remove it before serving, but it didn’t say that either so I made a judgement call. You know most of us here like things spicy so I was more than happy to have that jalapeño in there.
I also added 1/2 cup cilantro instead of the 1/4 cup it called for. That was just because, well, I love, love, love cilantro so I couldn’t help myself. With the scallions, I sliced about 5 or 6 because I used the green tops in place of the chives for the Aussie Meat Pie recipe. I like onions, so it worked well.
Last but certainly not least, the hot sauce. To me curry needs to have a bit of a bite. I don’t mean it needs to bite your head of, but a little nibble at least is needed. The recipe says to use Tabasco to taste but, like I said in Aussie Meat Pie posting, I use Franks Red Hot or Sriracha. I used the Franks this time and a good amount. Probably about 10 to 12 shakes of the bottle. I made sure and salted well too.
End result……total YUMMINESS!!! Kevin said this is definitely a keeper and I 100% agree. The picture isn’t the prettiest but trust me the taste is GREAT!
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 13 1/2 ounce can coconut milk
- 1 cup jasmine rice
- 3 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
- 4 6 to 8 ounce boneless skinless chicken breasts chopped into bite sized pieces.
- black pepper
- 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, thinly sliced
- 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 small jalapeño, cut in half and seeded
- 3 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
- 2 cups broccoli florets
- zest and juice of one lime
- 1/4 cup cilantro leaves (a handful), chopped
- 3 scallions, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves (a couple of handfuls), chopped
- 1 cup frozen peas
- hot sauce, such as (I say Franks Red Hot) Tobasco, to taste
In a sauce pot combine 1 cup of chicken stock, 1/4 cup of the coconut milk, and the jasmine rice. Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook for 15 to 18 minutes. Turn the heat off and keep the rice covered until ready to serve.
While coconut jasmine rice is cooking, preheat a large non-stick skillet over high heat with about 2 tablespoons of the vegetable oil. Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper. Add the chicken pieces, spreading them evenly across the the pan, and brown chicken on all sides, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the browned chicken to a plate and reserve. Add the last tablespoon of the vegetable oil to the pan. Add the green bell peppers, onions, garlic, jalapeño, ginger, and broccoli florets. Cook, stirring frequently, for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the veggies start to wilt. To the skillet add the remaining coconut milk and 1/2 cup chicken stock. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat, and simmer for 4 to 5 minutes. Add the chicken back to the skillet, and return it to a simmer for about 2 more minutes. add the lime juice, lime zest, cilantro, scallions, parsley, and frozen peas. Stir to thoroughly combine. Simmer a minute more to heat the peas, taste, and adjust the seasoning. Add some hot sauce if you like heat. Serve over coconut jasmine rice.
I try to be a good girl but every now and then the little devil pops on my shoulder and whispers in my ear that she wants something rich and creamy and NOT low fat. I am obviously powerless when this happens because I immediately set out to find something to feed her evil craving. My daughter loves angel hair pasta so as soon as I told her I was thinking about doing a pasta with cream sauce she threw her vote in for angel hair. Now I am not a huge angel hair fan. I am more of a linguine girl but being the wonderful mother that I am I obliged her.
For my garlic fans out there, you will love this one. It calls for 6 cloves of garlic YUM! I really think it is darn near impossible for me to make something without garlic. I truly am addicted. Luckily my fellow housemates feel the same way or there would be trouble brewin’.
I only used 1 pound of shrimp in this recipe but, if your gang is anything like my gang when it comes to shrimp, you might want to double that or face “shrimp wars” over the pot. I also would have preferred linguine, sorry Jessi because angel hair just seems to clump up on me if it is mixed with the sauce vs pouring the sauce over the top. Could just be a chef malfunction though.
The sauce for this recipe is to die for! I just wanted to eat it right out of the pot, forget the dang pasta! And cooking the broccoli with the pasta made it perfect for us. If you like your pasta a bit crunchy you might want to reduce the cook time down to about 3 minutes. The angel hair pasta only cooks for 5 minutes so I cooked the broccoli the same amount of time.
Bottom line, this is a really great recipe, very rich and creamy. The shrimp were fantastic in it and the broccoli let me fool myself that it was healthy-er than it really was! But heck, we all need a little creaminess once in awhile right?
Yesterday was my day for crazy cooking. I was so motivated and excited about being in the kitchen I wanted to cook, cook, COOK! It was probably a good thing that Kevin came home from work when he did or I might have just cook the weeks worth of groceries I just bought all in one night! Do you ever feel like that? Cooking can just make me so happy that everything else goes away.
I know I talk about wanting to make recipes healthier. Since my gastric bypass I not only want to try to eat healthier, but I would like to help other people eat healthier too. Don’t get me wrong, I love me some pasta and cheese! But there is a balance that can be found and when I AM able to cut a few calories out of a recipe, or make it healthier by adding more veggies, whole wheat pasta, etc. I do it.
This is one of those recipes. If you have read my “About Me” info you know I have been kind of anti-canned soups. Not because they are awful, there are a few I do really like, but because they can have almost a whole days sodium intake in just one can. Plus the heavy cream adds fat which none of us want right? So I took cream of broccoli soup and changed it up. More veggies, less cream, LOTS of flavor! I actually was joking with Kevin last night that I wanted to add a jalapeno to the soup. We both looked at each other and at the same time said, “That could be really good”! Yes we like things zinged up around here. If you think it sounds good though I would suggest a medium to small jalapeno, seeded and diced, throw in with the other veggies to sweat and cook down. I am going to try it next time.