Tag Archives: Chicken

Perfectly Pan Seared Chicken with Grape Tomatoes!


As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about……more mouth watering family dinners! While I love to cook and experiment in the kitchen, keeping the menu fresh and interesting can pose some challenges, particularly with everyone’s ever changing busy schedules and picky palettes. It’s only natural that chicken is a total go to; sear it, roast it, bake it, grill it, smother it with barbeque sauce, everybody’s happy.

I have made my new favorite Pan Seared Chicken with Grape Tomatoes several times and it’s always a winner. It’s simple and flavorful. What’s not to like?

 

Pan Seared Chicken with Grape Tomatoes

Serves 4

 

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

4 cups grape tomatoes

2 Tbsp fresh chopped parsley

8 cloves of garlic

1 -2 tsp salt

1 stick of butter, softened

1 ½ Tbsp fresh oregano chopped

1 tsp paprika

Salt

Cracked black pepper

 

Herbed Butter;

Make the butter earlier in the day or even the week. When it’s time to cook the chicken you’ll be finished in a snap!

 

Using a mortar and pestle, mash the garlic cloves with the salt until a nice paste forms

 

In a small bowl, combine;

Garlic paste

Butter

Oregano

Paprika

 

Salt and pepper to taste

Refrigerate until ready to use

 

In a large skillet, melt half the herbed butter over medium heat

Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper

Place chicken breasts in skillet, covering while cooking for approximately 10 minutes

Flip over the chicken and cook for another 10 minutes, just to be sure the chicken is cooked through and no longer pink in the center

Remove chicken and place on a platter, tenting the chicken to keep it warm

 

In the nice pan juices, cook the tomatoes for about 5 minutes

Add the remaining herbed butter and continue to cook for about 1 more minute, crushing the tomatoes as you stir

Season with salt and pepper to taste

 

Smother chicken with tomato mixture and sprinkle with parsley

I paired our dinner with corn on the cob and mashed potatoes. It was perfect!

 

More family dinners, more simple recipes, more easy chicken, more mouth watering goodness……

To schedule and Interior Design appointment, a Life Style consultation or a speaking engagement, please email me at moreismoremom@aol.com

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Fabulous, Flavorful, Farfalle Pasta!


As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about…….more flavorful pasta dinners! While my pals won’t necessarily eat foods that are “touching” or “mixed together”, Chuck, my mom and I thoroughly enjoyed this Chicken Farfalle Pasta. The beauty of this dish was that I was able to serve it deconstructed (meaning as a plain old grilled chicken breast with a side of buttered noodles) to the kids, while the rest of us loved it, bursting with flavor, as it was intended to be……

Chicken Farfalle Pasta:

Serves 4-6

3 chicken breasts, roasted or grilled, cut into bite size pieces

 

2 Tbsp olive oil

2 large red onions, thinly sliced

2 Tbsp white wine vinegar or Sherry vinegar

2 tsp sugar

16 0z of farfalle pasta

1 cup white wine

1 cup chicken broth

8 tomatoes, diced

½ cup basil leaves, rough chopped

2 Tbsp oregano

4-6 cups of loosely packed spinach or arugula

1 cup of soft, creamy crumbled cheese like goat cheese or feta

In a skillet, over medium-high heat, heat olive oil

Add onions, sprinkling with salt

Stir until they start to get soft and slightly brown, approximately 10 minutes

Reduce the heat to medium, adding;

Vinegar

Sugar

Stir onions until nicely browned and caramelized

Transfer onions to a bowl and set aside

Bring a large pot of water to a bowl

Cook the farfalle to desired doneness (we like ours mushier rather than al dente)

Drain

In the skillet, add;

Wine

Bring to a boil, and maintain the heat until the wine reduces by about half

Add;

Pasta

Onions

Chicken broth

Tomatoes

Chicken

Basil

Oregano

Dash of salt and pepper

Cook until warmed through, about 5 minutes

On individual dinner plates, place a handful of baby spinach

Top with the pasta mixture

Sprinkle with a heaping helping of cheese

Serve and enjoy!

More pasta, more bursts of flavor, more family dinners…….

To schedule an Interior Design appointment or a speaking engagement, please email me at moreismoremom@aol.com

Fabulous, Flavorful, Farfalle Pasta!

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Pancetta Wrapped Chicken…..


As the More is More Mom® I’m all about……..more good finger lickin’ chicken! Now, I knew I was onto something when my family asked, “Is there more?” You are totally going to love this recipe; it’s beautiful, simple and elegant. Perfect for a family meal or for a crowd….

Pancetta Wrapped Chicken Breasts:

pancetta and sage

 

4-5 slices of pancetta per chicken breast

6 sage leaves per chicken breast (you can certainly substitute with basil, or leave the herbs out entirely)

1 boneless, skinless chicken breast per person

Salt and pepper

Olive oil

You’ll start with a quick prep the night before you want to serve dinner.

 

add the chicken

Un-coil 4-5 pancetta slices per chicken breast.

Sprinkle both sides of the chicken breast with salt and pepper

Place 3 sage leaves on the underside of the chicken, placing the breast directly on the uncoiled pancetta

Place 3 additional sage leaves on top of the chicken breast

 

Tightly wrap pancetta around chicken breast, tucking excess pieces of pancetta under the chicken breast

all wrapped up...

Wrap each chicken breast, tightly, in plastic wrap, so the pancetta becomes a second skin

Repeat with the remaining chicken breasts

Chill over night

 

The following day, when you are ready to whip up dinner, remove chicken breasts from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before you want to get cookin’.

Pre-heat oven to 375°

In an oven safe skillet, heat pan over medium-high heat, adding ½ Tbsp oil per chicken breast.

Once the oil is sizzling, reduce heat to medium

Place the chicken breasts, seam side down, for approximately 5 minutes per side.

 

Rotate until all sides are a nice golden brown

To be certain that I didn’t serve my family a dinner laden with salmonella, I decided that once all the breasts and pancetta had browned, I would pop the skillet in the oven for 5-10 minutes.

Let stand for a few minutes

In the meantime, I made a delicious, classic risotto

Basic Risotto:

risotto ingredients

 

32-oz of chicken broth

1 stick of butter

¾ cup chopped onion, from ½ of a large onion

2 cups of Arborio rice

¾ cup white wine

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Salt and pepper

In a saucepan, bring the chicken broth to a slow simmer, reduce heat

 

In a large skillet, over medium heat, melt;

6 Tbsp butter

Add;

 

Onion

Sautee until the onion is tender, but not brown

Add;

Rice, stirring until well coated by the butter

Add;

Wine

Simmer for approximately 3 minutes, until the wine has largely evaporated

Add;

 

½ cup of broth at a time

Stir until almost completely absorbed

Continue to add the broth, ½ cup at a time, until all the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender.

Remove from the heat

Stir in;

Parmesan cheese

2 Tbsp of butter

Sprinkle with salt and pepper

*Note: My kids prefer their risotto without the fresh cheese

 

Place a cooked chicken breast on each dinner plate, adding a heaping serving of risotto and your favorite cooked vegetable.

More beautiful meals, more tasty morsels, more family dinners….

Pancetta Wrapped Chicken With Risotto

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Easier Than It Sounds Coq Au Vin….


As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about……more good for the soul chicken dinners! It’s no big secret. I’m the first to admit it. I am in love with my propane fueled Weber Grill. We grill almost every night; whether there is sun, rain, snow or sleet. Just like the Postman delivers the mail. Conveniently, we have our grill positioned right out side our patio door. I’m able to slide it around, with the flick of a wrist, so I never actually have to go outside. Fire hazard, shmire hazard! It’s perfect!

Some nights, however, we crave that good, roasted in the oven, stick to your ribs kind of dinner. My Nick liked it so much he ate every last one of the carrots right out of the roasting pan (what chocoholic, junk food loving, teenager does that?)! Your family is going to love it too…..

Easier Than It Sounds Coq Au Vin:

Serves 4

3-4 lbs of chicken pieces with the skin (I used thighs and drumsticks and they were outstanding)

1 Tbsp Thyme

1 tsp course sea salt

1 tsp cracked black pepper

4 Tbsp butter, 2 for the chicken and the other two for the veggies

1 Tbsp oil

¼ cup shallot, finely chopped

4 leeks, finely chopped, white and light green parts only

1 lb of carrots, peeled and cut into 2-3” pieces, slicing the thickest pieces in half or quarters. This should produce approximately 24 slices of carrots, a nice number for 4 people.

1 cup of white wine

3 lbs of small, red potatoes, peeled and left whole

1 Tbsp chopped parsley

¾ cup heavy whipping cream

2 Tbsp all purpose flour

Pre-heat the oven to 350°

Arrange chicken on a board or platter and pat dry.

Sprinkle chicken with Thyme, salt and pepper

In a large pot, or oven proof skillet, which I happened to use, heat;

 

2 Tbsp butter

1 Tbsp oil

Brown the chicken over medium-high heat, in two batches if necessary, for about 10 minutes per batch

Remove from the pan and place on a platter, to collect any juices

To the pan or skillet juices, add;

 

 

2 Tbsp butter

Leeks

Shallots

Sautee over medium-low heat, covered for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally

Add;

Wine

Chicken

Carrots

Bring to a boil, until the liquid is reduced by nearly half, for approximately 5 minutes

Cover the pot, and place in the oven, braising for 20-25

While the wine, chicken and carrots are boiling, place the potatoes in a large pan covered with cold water

Bring to a boil, reducing the heat to a simmer until fork tender, approximately 20-25 minutes

 

Strain, place back in the pot and sprinkle with parsley

Set aside

In the meantime, remove the pan with the chicken from the oven

Place the chicken on a platter

Leave the carrots in the pan to cook a little longer

Add heavy cream and reduce to a simmer

Cover and cook for approximately 5-7 minutes

Remove the carrots

Add flour and stir until thick

 

Place a helping of chicken, carrots and potatoes on a plate and smother in sauce

Prepare to be warm, happy and comforted!

More meals as a family, more vegetables for your growing teenager, more good for the soul comfort food……

Easier Than It Sounds Coq Au Vin

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More is More Mom Appearing Today on Chicago’s ABC 7, News at 11AM! Labor Day Appetizers…


Today I will be appearing on Chicago’s ABC-7, News at 11AM sharing my tips and inspirations for throwing for a great Labor Day party. As the More is More Mom®, I am thrilled to share these beautiful appetizers with you. I hope you can celebrate with your family along with ours!

I find that while the ladies like snicky snacks, the fellas prefer something a little heartier. To satisfy the tastes of everyone at your party, I have selected four recipes to share with you. Enjoy them one at a time, or all together, for a wonderful celebration with family and friends.

Steak Crostini’s:

The tender steaks and creamy topping are such tasty goodness! I love that this recipe is so simple and can be largely prepared in advance.

Please note that each strip steak will provide 12-15 appetizers.

Topping:

In a mixing bowl, combine;

¾ cup mayonnaise

3 heaping tsp horseradish

6 tsp Dijon mustard

2 cloves of garlic, minced

½ tsp salt

Mix well, until nice and creamy, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. This can be prepared a day in advance.

Crostini:

Slice nice crusty baguette bread approximately ½” thick for manageable, bite size pieces. Depending on how many appetizers you are making, you may need more than one loaf of bread. My preference is to slice the bread in advance and store it in an airtight container or a re-sealable baggie (Ziploc’s my favorite. This is not a paid advertisement…yet). Put aside until ready to toast and serve.  

 

Steaks:

The New York strip is a very nice cut of meat. The marbling gives it a little extra flavor.

Sprinkle steaks on both sides with salt (I love sea salt) and pepper (I am highly in favor of cracked black pepper on everything).

Depending on your preference, you have two choices.

Option 1: Pre-heat your grill to medium. Cook each side for approximately 4-5 minutes for medium-rare. Let stand for 10 minutes. Trim off any uneven edges before slicing ¼” pieces.

Option 2: In a large skillet, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the steaks and cook for 4-5 minutes per side for medium-rare. . Let stand for 10 minutes. Trim off any uneven edges before slicing ¼” pieces.

Toast Crostini while steaks cook.

Finely chop 1/3 cup flat leaf parsley.

Assembly:

Arrange toasted baguette slices on a platter.

Place a small dollop of topping on each slice of bread.

Put a slice of steak on each Crostini.

Top each slice of steak with another dollop of the creamy topping.

Generously sprinkle with parsley.

Serve.

Bacon, Chicken and Potato Salad Lettuce Wraps:

A delicious mouth full! Again, like the Boy Scouts, my motto is…Be Prepared. You can make everything in advance and assemble right before you are ready to serve. What could be more beautiful and easier than that?

This recipe will produce approximately 24 appetizers.

Bacon:

Who doesn’t love bacon? You’ll want to cook about 10 slices of your favorite flavor (I like a smoked bacon); 6 to mix in to the salad and 4 to chop and sprinkle on top when you’re ready to serve.

You can certainly fry the bacon in a skillet, but I love to bake it in the oven on 350° for about 30 minutes. You can cook a lot of bacon in a short amount of time that way. I make 2 lbs at a time and store in the fridge in an air tight container. Then you can just warm it up in the micro as needed. It’s so easy to simply line a lipped baking sheet with aluminum foil, evenly place the slices so they are close, but not quite touching, cook and toss the foil in the trash when you are finished. Wipe the baking sheet with paper towel and wash out the pan. Cinchy!

 

Chicken:

 

Place one 6 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to simmer, cover slightly and poach until cooked completely through, approximately 15-20 minutes. Remove from the pan and cool until easy to handle. Cut chicken into bite size pieces.

Potatoes:

Pre-heat oven to 400°

In a large mixing bowl, toss;

 

4 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed

2 Tbsp olive oil

¾ tsp salt (kosher or sea)

¾ tsp cracked black pepper

 

Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil

Evenly spread potatoes

Roast until golden and tender, approximately 30-40 minutes

Cool slightly and transfer to a large mixing bowl

Mix:

In the large mixing bowl with the potatoes, add;

6 slices of bacon, chopped

Chicken, cut into bite size pieces

1/3 cup diced celery

½ cup diced onion (your choice; red, Vidalia, scallions)

3-4 cloves of garlic, minced

Optional: 1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese (depends on how much you like cheese)

Dressing:

In a separate bowl, combine;

½ cup mayonnaise

2 Tbsp white wine vinegar

2 tsp Dijon Mustard

1 Tbsp paprika

2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

4 sage leaves chopped

Mix until smooth and creamy

 

Add:

Dressing to bacon, chicken and potato mixture. Mix well. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Assemble:

In order to get 24 appetizer size portions of lettuce, you’ll need about 4 heads of Bibb lettuce. This doesn’t have to be a waste at all; chop or tear the leaves that are too big for the appetizers into bite size pieces. Store in a re-sealable baggie lined with paper towel and serve as a salad another day. Separate the leaves you are going to use, wash and store the appetizer portion size leaves in a re-sealable baggie lined with paper towel until ready to serve. 

 

On a decorative platter, arrange lettuce leaves.

Scoop a generous portion of salad mixture into each lettuce leaf.

Sprinkle portions with additional 4 slices of chopped, cooked bacon.

Serve.

Pork Tenderloin with Spiced Ginger Dipping Sauce:

There is sooooo much flavor packed into each cube of meat, not to mention the dipping sauce, it will leave your guests wanting more (and this is just an appetizer!).

One pound of pork tenderloin makes about 15 skewers (with 3 slices of meat on each).

Marinade:

In a re-sealable baggie (so much less mess), combine;

1 cup sliced green onion (green and white parts)

½ cup of vegetable oil

7-8 cloves of minced garlic

1 finely chopped jalapeno pepper (bring on the heat)

1 Tbsp chopped, fresh ginger (Heavenly aroma)

2 Tbsp sesame oil

3 Tbsp lime juice

1 large pork tenderloin (approximately 1 ½ lbs, cut into 1” cubes)

Marinade for at least 4 hours, or even better, overnight

Sauce:

Over medium heat, heat up a saucepan.

Add;

1 Tbsp vegetable oil

½ cup red onion, chopped

Cook until the onion is tender, approximately 4 minutes

Add;

1 heaping Tbsp chopped ginger (sooooo fragrant)

4 cloves of garlic, minced

Cook for a minute or so (until delightfully aromatic)

Add;

1 – 14 oz can of diced tomatoes, do not drain

¼ cup rice vinegar

2 Tbsp Soy Sauce

1 Tbsp sugar

¼ tsp red pepper flakes

Bring sauce to a simmer for 10 minutes, over medium-low heat.

Pour sauce into a blender, puree until smooth.

Keep warm until ready to serve.

Garnish with chopped scallions

Skewers:

Soak skewers for 30m minutes.

Remove pork cubes from marinade.

Thread 3 cubes on each skewer, allowing a little space between each cube, for even cooking. Discard marinade.

 

Option 1: Pre-heat grill to medium. Add cubed pork skewers and cook 5-8 minutes per side.

Option 2: Pre-heat grill pan on cook top over medium heat and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Add pork skewers and cook 3-5 minutes per side.

 

Arrange artfully on a platter and serve with the dipping sauce.

Roasted Red Pepper Dip:

This dip is delicious with veggies, pita chips, or perhaps even on a Panini sandwich…..

In a blender, place;

2 – 7 oz jars of roasted red sweet peppers, drained

½ cup oil packed, sun dried tomatoes, drained and snipped

 1 heaping tsp fresh thyme

2 tsp honey

1 tsp salt

2 cloves garlic minced

¼ tsp cayenne pepper

Blend until smooth

Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve

 

Blanch Vegetables:

Blanching brings out the beautiful color and flavors of your favorite veggies.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

Add kosher salt.

Dunk;

1 lb trimmed green beans in boiling water for 2 minutes

Remove and immediately place in an ice bath

When cool, place on a paper towel to soak up the water

Dunk:

1 lb peeled, trimmed and sliced carrots in boiling water for 2 minutes

Remove and immediately place in an ice bath

When cool, place on a paper towel to soak up the water

Dunk:

1 lb trimmed asparagus in boiling water for 3 minutes

Remove and immediately place in an ice bath

When cool, place on a paper towel to soak up the water

Dunk:

3 squash, trimmed and sliced into spears in boiling water for 2 minutes

Remove and immediately place in an ice bath

When cool, place on a paper towel to soak up the water

Dunk:

3 zucchini, trimmed and sliced into spears in boiling water for 2 minutes

Remove and immediately place in an ice bath

When cool, place on a paper towel to soak up the water

Dunk:

1 lb of broccoli florettes in boiling water for 2 minutes

Remove and immediately place in an ice bath

When cool, place on a paper towel to soak up the water

 

When ready to serve, arrange veggies on a platter and dip in a bowl

Put pita chips (you can make your own or purchase the fantastic Stacy’s brand pita chips) in a bowl

Serve

 I hope you have had a great Labor Day with your family creating….more memories!

 

 

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