Balsamic & Tomato Roast Chicken

May 26th, 2010 // Dinner, Healthy, Recipes

Our dear friends Mark and Kit came over to meet the new baby last night, so my kid and I decided to cook for them. Since Donna Hay’s Off the Shelf cookbook was already out on the counter we thought we’d try one of her chicken recipes. Baking chicken breasts for company is always a dicey move because they get overcooked so easily, but the tomatoes and balsamic kept this dish surprisingly moist. Even Mark and Kit commented on how perfectly well done the chicken was! My kid had a blast making it and even asked to taste the capers before putting them in the bowl. Score 1 for capers.

What I liked best about making this with my kid was that he kept asking to smell the mixture. In the past he’s hated when we made things with vinegar, but this combination of vinegar and sugar was very appealing to his nose; making him much more interested in the dish. It’s also what made the dish so interesting to eat! Now for the recipe… Read more after the jump…

Spaghetti Pie

May 25th, 2010 // Dinner, Most Popular, Recipes

I’m a big fan of local restaurant and marketplace called Clementine. Every time I stop to pick up something there I notice they have a spaghetti pie in their to-go section. I have never actually eaten it but it looks SO GOOD that I decided to try to recreate it. Since my vegetarian husband was home for dinner tonight, my kid and I used meatless meatballs in the recipe. It was really good, but next time I’ll be adding the real deal.

Spaghetti Pie Recipe

Prep Time: 15 mins  Cooing Time: 30 mins

2 large carrots (peeled and diced)
1/2 pound spaghetti
1 15 oz jar good tomato sauce (I use Roa’s brand)
1 cup part skim ricotta cheese
1 egg
1 1/4 cup part skim shredded mozzarella cheese
8 to 10 mini meatballs
1 teaspoon oregano
salt & pepper

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Cook the spaghetti in a pot of boiling water for 6 minutes. Add carrots and cook for another minute or two. Drain and transfer to a large bowl. (Spaghetti should be al dente.) Stir in tomato sauce, 3/4 cup of  mozzarella and ricotta cheese.  Stir well so that spaghetti begins to cool before adding the egg. Then add egg, meatballs, oregano and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well and pour into a 9 inch pie dish. Sprinkle top with remaining 1/2 cup of mozzarella and bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until top is golden brown and bubbly and pie is set. Let cool for 5 minutes before slicing. Serves 4 to 6.

Spaghetti Pie

Strawberry Muffins

May 24th, 2010 // Breakfast, Healthy, Recipes

So far we’ve made corn muffins, blueberry muffins, carrot muffins, banana nut muffins and craisin muffins. Would this world be complete if we hadn’t made strawberry muffins? No way! This super easy strawberry muffin recipe starts with (you guessed it) Trader Joe’s Multigrain Pancake Mix as the base. They are super healthy and not overly sweet but a very nice treat none-the-less!

Strawberry Muffin Recipe

Prep Time: 10 mins  Cooking Time: 8 to 10 mins

2 1/2 cups TJ Multigrain Pancake Mix
2 eggs lightly beaten
1 pint strawberries (washed and chopped)
2 generous tablespoons applesauce
3 tablespoons canola oil
1/2 cup sugar (split in two 1/4 cup portions)
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven at 400 degrees. In a large bowl combine dry ingredients: pancake mix, cinnamon and 1/4 cup sugar. Set aside. In another bowl toss srtawberries in remaining sugar and us a potato masher to smash the berries leaving some bigger chunks. Add ggs, apple sauce and vegetable oil and whisk together. Pour egg mixture into dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Mix together but do not over stir. Scoop batter into well greased mini muffin pans. Cups should be 3/4 full. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. For a moist muffin, be careful not overcook! Makes 24 – 30 mini muffins.

Strawberry Muffins

Garlicky Corn on the Cob

May 23rd, 2010 // Dinner, Healthy, Picky Busters, Recipes

Last month in honor of our 8th wedding anniversary, my parents bought us a grill. That same month we had baby #2. So we have a new grill and a new baby but no propane tank for the grill. When my kid begged for grilled corn on the cob today, I had to get creative.

Prep Time: 5 mins  Cooking Time: 20 to 30 mins

4 ears of corn (shucked)
2 tablespoons olive oil
garlic powder
salt & pepper

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Using a pastry brush, brush all four ears of corn with olive oil. Sprinkle generously with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Roll each ear of corn in tin foil and place in hot oven to cook for 20 to 30 minutes or until corn is soft and starting to brown.

Garlicky Corn on the Cob

Pear and Almond Galettes

May 20th, 2010 // Breakfast, Easy Cheats, Recipes

I had puff pastry sheets in my freezer and I used one of them recently to make the easy Apple Turnover Recipe.  The puff pastry box comes with two sheets so we decided to make use of the second one this morning. We found this Pear and Almond Galettes recipe in Donna Hay’s Off The Shelf cookbook – they were a snap to make and my kid devoured them!

Prep Time: 10 mins  Cooking Time: 20 mins

2 pears sliced thin
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon almond meal

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut ready-rolled puff pastry into 6 rectangles. Fold in each of the sides and press with fork. Sprinkle almond meal over the the top of each triangle and top with slices of pear being careful to leave the border in tact. Brush the pear with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Pear and Almond Galettes