Sunday, February 15, 2009

The BEST chicken I have ever had!!!

This will be the dish I make on special occasions from now's a little time consuming, but not as bad as one would think.

Phyllo Dough wrapped stuffed Chicken

I revised a recipe I found here. I thought it had an excessive amount of cheese & the onions made it too crunchy, and I made it for 2 people. Just double or triple it if you are planning on making it for company.

2 boneless, skinless, chicken breasts, pounded to 1/8" thick (I recommend covering in plastic wrap to pound)

3 cups fresh chopped spinach

1/2 cup chopped artichoke hearts

1/4 cup chopped onion

2 T olive or cooking oil

2 oz light/lowfat cream cheese, cubed

1 cup shredded mozz. cheese

1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

1/2 egg yolk, beaten (just beat the whole one and pour approx half of it out)

1/2 T flour

1/4 t ground nutmeg

1/4 t ground cumin

6 phyllo dough sheets (found in frozen section usually)

1/2 cup butter, melted (you probably won't use all of it - it's hard to divide what they had though)

Place each chicken breast half between two sheets of heavy plastic wrap. Pound with the flat side of a meat mallet until 1/8" thick. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

In a large skillet, cook spinach and onion in hot oil until onion is tender. Remove from heat. Stir in cream cheese until blended. Stir in remaining cheese, egg yolk, flour, artichokes, nutmeg and cumin.

Place about 1/4 cup of the spinach mixture on each chicken breast half. Roll up jelly-roll style. Not necessary to seal ends. Place one sheet of phyllo on work surface. Keep rest of sheets covered with a damp towel. Brush with some of the melted margarine or butter.

Place another phyllo sheet on top of the first. Brush with margarine. Place one chicken roll near the short side of the phyllo. Roll chicken and phyllo over once to cover chicken. Fold in long sides, continue rolling from short side. Place in a shallow baking pan. Repeat with rest of chicken, phyllo and margarine. Brush with margarine. Bake, uncovered in a 350 F. oven for 30-35 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. A very elegant entree.

Pink, red & yellow "rainbow cake"

For Valentines' Day, I took a spin off of omnomicon's ranbow diet cake shown here:

For Valentine's day, I made a regular box yellow cake mix and followed the directions. Then, I divided the batter into 3 bowls. I used gel food coloring (better for you than the old stuff - and brighter!) and dripped it into the bowls to make pink, red, and left the yellow cake as is.

I greased the pans w/ crisco and flour to make it easy to flip them out to decorate.
One cake mix = 2 heart pans. I poured the majority of the red on the bottom of the first one, half of the yellow cake mix on top, and about 1/3 of the pink on the top. Then with the other, I did the opposite. Don't mix the colors, just dump on top of each other.

I baked for the normal time on the box directions, they came out just right.

I flipped the first one onto the cake platter and iced it.

Then I set the second layer & frosted it.


Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Spinach Stuffed Chicken

Recipe of the day: Spinach Stuffed Chicken (I halved this recipe & it was still too much for Madison & I to eat)

It was funny, I went online to find a recipe that I could use a half of a bag of fresh spinach, some bacon, chicken, and sour cream (because these were all things I had to buy for our get-togethers this weekend) and I found this amazing recipe! I will definitely be making this again.

(note: this is not the halved recipe)
1 (10 oz) package fresh spinach leaves
1/2 cup lowfat or regular sour cream
1/2 cup shredded mozzerella
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - pounded to 1/2 inch thickness
1 pinch ground black pepper
1 pinch chili pepper
8 strips turkey bacon or regular bacon (uncooked)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F

Place spinach in a large glass bowl, and heat in the microwave for 3 minutes, stirring every minute or so, or until wilted.

3. Stir in sour cream, cheese, garlic, black pepper, and chili powder.

4. Pound chicken breasts to 1/2 inch thickness. (I put saran wrap on the chicken so the gross chicken juice doesn't spray everywhere!)

5. Lay the chicken breasts out on a clean surface, and spoon some of the spinach mixture onto each one.

6. Roll up chicken to enclose the spinach, then wrap each chicken breast with two slices of bacon. Secure with toothpicks, and arrange in a shallow baking dish. (I did not have toothpicks, hence the crazy skewer sticks!)

7. Bake uncovered for 35 minutes in the preheated oven, then increase heat to 500 degrees F, or use the oven's broiler to cook for an additional 5 to 10 minutes to brown the bacon.

I took the bacon off (we are watching our fat intake) but it didn't necessarily say that you can't eat it. I also only like extra crispy bacon. It keeps the chicken nice & moist, and gives it just the slightest hint of bacon taste. mm!
I highly recommend this recipe! We were going to make it this weekend as a special treat, then we realized we were busy all weekend, so I decided to make it tonight. It's relatively low-fat and really tasty!