Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Table Talk: Stir-Fried Beef and Broccoli

I am in love with stir frying lately.  What's not to love?  Usually stir fry is quick, easy and healthy.  So, of course, when I was looking for recipes for the week, this one caught my eye.  Who doesn't love some good broccoli-beef?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

TWD: French Apple Tart

 I wish I could tell you how this tastes, but I have no idea.  We are really trying to watch our calories around here so we dropped this off to some friends.  I hate that you can't taste this kind of thing before you give it to someone.  I did try all the components by themselves when I was making it and they were all pretty good.  I imagine this would be delicious with a scoop of ice cream and maybe some caramel sauce.....I just decided that I shouldn't have given it away..... :)

I just used the pie crust recipe that I normally use.  I was ready to use the recipe in the book, but I didn't have pastry flour, so I just stuck with what I knew.
It wasn't super hard.  Maybe a little harder than a regular apple pie but it looks so pretty.  If you'd like to try the recipe you can get it at Law's of the Kitchen, our host blog for the week.

And if you'd liked to see how the other TWD bakers fared this week, you can go HERE.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Pico Sliders

I don't know about you, but when I am trying to eat healthier, I am sometimes have to trick myself.  Like eating 2 sliders makes me think I am eating more than 1 hamburger.  I know, I am an idiot.  At least the part of me that believes it's different is an idiot anyway.  I guess if it results in eating cute food like this, then idiot it is.  I don't care.  These are pretty healthy.  We used 95% lean beef, reduced fat provolone cheese and the pico de gallo with avocado.  Not to mention the quick wheat slider buns.  They taste delicious and make you feel good about eating a burger.  And Tyler was happy because he is always complaining that we don't eat enough red meat. :)

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Quick Wheat Hamburger or Slider Buns

Aren't these things just so cute?  I've made this recipe a few times now.  This was the first time I used half wheat flour and also the first time making slider buns instead of Hamburger buns.  These are the perfect buns to hold a burger but also so fast, they are done in under an hour.  I've previously posted a bun recipe that is also good, but it takes a few hours from start to finish and there are plenty of days that my brain doesn't work that far in advance.  Really the only sacrifice here is the amount of yeast used.  The taste and texture are prefect.  So as long as you have the extra yeast to spare, this recipe is for you (and me).

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Introducing Table Talk: Chicken Parmesan

Bake 52 ended with the year 2012.  We set out to bake 52 weeks out of the year and believe it or not there were some of us left by the end!  And, even more unexpectedly, there were a few of us who wanted to keep going!   We decided to go with a little different focus and a little more lax in the rules. :)  We will be posting dinner recipes 2 times a month (on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays). This is week one, thus the 'introducing' in the title. :)  It was a great way to start, who doesn't love chicken parmesan?  Well, except Tyler, but I am starting to wonder if he's some kind of alien (and 'starting to  wonder' is the polite version).  Even though he claims not to like it, I have started to change his tune.  He has admitted to loving the version of chicken parmesan that I previously posted about.  And today, he said this was good.  As far as I am concerned, it's a winner. :)

I usually stick mainly with chicken tenderloins when I am cooking chicken, but this recipe called for breast cutlets and explained how to turn a breast into a cutlet.  You slice it in half length-wise and then pound it to 1/4 inch thick.  I used to pound each piece separately but now I just line all my chicken up on a couple layers of paper towel, cover with a layer of paper towel and pound them all at once.  
It's much quicker and you also dry your chicken at the same time.  Just a tip.  I know, could I be any more helpful?  It's like I am curing cancer here.
It works better with the tenderloins, they are just easier to flatten than breasts, but it still worked pretty well here.

I loved the tip about cooking the chicken on a rack.  I wondered if it would stick at all but it didn't.  Not one bit.  Way better than just cooking on the foil.
I also loved using the panko.  It really makes a big difference in the crunchyness of the dish, I think.

I only ended up cooking my chicken for 6 minutes and then putting it back in for the final 2 with the sauce and cheese.  Because I would rather get salmonella than eat dry chicken. :)
The book has an easy sauce recipe, but I just used our favorite marinara sauce that I love more every time I make it.

I think next time, I would take the parmesan cream sauce from the other recipe-prepare the chicken according to this recipe but with tenderloins instead of the breasts and get the best of both worlds. 
Either way, this is a great recipe.  If you need a good chicken parmesan recipe, (and who doesn't?) you can get it HERE.  Jen was our hostess for the week and chose the recipe.
Thanks for picking a great recipe Jen!

On a side note, I love to see that my photos are getting a little better, when I posted the last chicken parmesan recipe, I was pretty happy with those photos but now I cringe looking at them!  Don't let the photos deter you. :)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

TWD: Pizza with Onion Confit

I am always excited when I can say I've made something new.  And now I can say I have made a confit!  I have always wondered what that meant.  Well, since Monica (from FRIENDS) said she makes the best duck confit with broccoli rabe, anyway.  And now I kind of know.  I was expecting the onion confit to be similar to caramelized onions and it was, I thought.  We all know how much I like caramelized onions, so of course, I loved these.  And we all thought the pizza dough was pretty good.

I added sun dried tomatoes, feta cheese and kalamata olives to our pizza.  The kids got the more traditional cheese and pepperoni.  At first, I think Tyler was wishing he was one of the kids.  After eating it, he did say he did liked it okay though. :)
My mandolin and I seem to have set aside our differences.   I have used it a few times since the attack and it's been on it's best behavior.  I think soon we might be inseparable.  Everyone/thing deserves a second chance, right?

If you'd like to try this recipe, you can get it HERE.

If you'd like to see what the other TWD bakers did this week, you can go HERE.

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