Dec 162014
 

I’ve tried some new recipes lately. I wanted to share a few of them with you guys because they were good ones! If you are looking for a quick and easy dinner recipe, this post is for you.

5 Ingredient Salsa Verde Beef Tacos

I am a sucker for “5 ingredients or less” recipes but often times they are disappointing. This one was not disappointing in any way. It was actually one of my favorite new recipes. It was simple, it was easy, it was fast AND it was delicious. The salsa verde made the beef flavorful in a subtle, different way. The best part? I go 4 servings out of this recipe and that made it around 260 calories.  Add 100 calories for a tortilla, throw in some raw spinach and avocado and you’ve got a fantastic dinner for less than 500 calories and it’s filling, too. This recipe will become a staple in our house I think.

 

Creamy Mushroom Pork Chops

I like that pork chops are low in calories. Sadly, they are also often very bland. If we make pork chops I prefer to try recipes that have some gravy or sauce to kind of freshen it up and make it a little more savory.

gravy
This recipe was super easy and fairly quick. I had all the ingredients on hand and I am happy with how it turned out. While the pork chops were cooking I baked some sweet potatoes as a side and made a salad. The recipe was simple but I thought it tasted good. It made boring pork chops a little more interesting. I would definitely make this recipe again but I think I would add some fresh tarragon or rosemary to the cream of mushroom mixture. Other than that, I wouldn’t change anything!

Cranberry Chicken

I recently bought a cookbook of all crockpot recipes (recently meaning this summer). I’ve been dying to try some of them but just haven’t gotten around to it until now.  I had all the ingredients on hand for this one except for the quick-cooking tapioca. It’s something I’d never heard of before or used but looking into it I guess it’s used for thickening stews and sauces. When I didn’t have this I went to the handy-dandy Google and found that flour or cornstarch worked just as well. So I used flour instead. I WILL be buying some of the tapioca soon, though, because a lot of the recipes in this book call for it and I want to give it a try.

Crockpot Cranberry Chicken

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

Total Time: 6 hours, 15 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Calories per serving: 330

From: Better Homes and Gardens Ultimate Slowcooker book

Ingredients

  • 2.5 - 3 pounds chicken thighs or drumsticks, skinned
  • 1 16 ounce can whole cranberry sauce
  • 2 tablespoons dry onion soup mix
  • 2 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
  • 3 cups hot cooked rice

Instructions

  1. Place chicken in slow cooker.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the cranberry sauce, dry soup mix and tapioca.
  3. Pour over the chicken.
  4. Cover and cook on low heat setting for 5-6 hours, or on high heat 2.5-3 hours.
  5. Serve over hot cooked rice.
http://www.110pounds.com/?p=44798

When the chicken was close to being done, I cooked some rice in my rice cooker that I got at Trader Joe’s. It was a basmati and wild rice mixture with herbs in it. I was excited to try it!

The chicken I used was boneless, skinless chicken breasts and it worked well, perhaps not as the recipe intended, but it still worked. The chicken breasts fell apart and I shredded the chicken a bit, then mixed it around in the sauce. I liked the chicken shredded like this. It soaked up all the saucy goodness. I had a few nibbles as it was finishing up and it was delicious!

photo

Dinner was finally ready and it was by far, one of my favorite crockpot recipes I’ve done in a long time. The chicken was perfect, not dried out at all, and the cranberry sauce was sweet but not too sweet. It was just perfect. I also loved the Trader Joe’s rice. this dinner was fantastic! Give this recipe a try.

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Mar 062013
 

Chicken is kind of a boring protein. Okay, maybe not, maybe it’s just me? Chicken is never my first choice when I sit down at a restaurant and look at the menu. I remember this quote from Anthony Bourdain’s book, Kitchen Confidential (GREAT book): “Chicken is boring. Chefs see it as a menu item for people who don’t know what they want to eat”. When I read that, I remember saying out loud, “Yeah! He’s right!” Chicken is boring and safe.

But it doesn’t have to be. The way I got over the “chicken is boring” lackluster feeling was experimenting with lots of different recipes. I’ve had some favorites, too; recipes that were savory and delicious and I made repeatedly. Here are just a few of my favorites:

Braised Chicken and Spring Vegetables
BBQ Chicken Thighs
Garlic and Soy Chicken Thighs
Mexican Crockpot Chicken

I wish I had another recipe to add to the list, but this recipe was missing something. It wasn’t BAD, but it was just a tad boring. I’ve seen some other bloggers write about balsamic chicken before and loved it. I wonder what this recipe is lacking that I could add? Unfortunately  I don’t remember which blogs I read that raved about their balsamic chicken!

I don’t know where I found this recipe. It was in my stack of printouts, with no website on it, so I can’t link to where I found it. But here it is:

5.0 from 1 reviews
Balsamic Chicken
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 5 ounce boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large ziplock bag, mix well. Seal and marinade on refrigerator at least 30 minutes.
  2. Heat a grill pan over medium heat until hot. Place chicken on pan, discarding excess marinade and cook 6-10 minutes per side, or until no pink remains and juices run clear.

The only balsamic we had on hand was the pomegranate infused balsamic vinegar. I used this because the flavor doesn’t taste like pomegranate. It’s only a hint of sweet. I also added some onion powder to the mixture.

Mix it well and then pour it into the bag. I cut two large chicken breast cutlets in half to make four smaller pieces. I let it marinade for about an hour.

I made a salad as the side dish with the chicken. The chicken was a bit on the bland side, like I said. Maybe it needs a bunch of garlic? Help me out!

QUESTION: Do you think chicken is boring?

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