Chicken Stir Fry

I love stir-fry.  I just don’t like eating it at restaurants or getting the frozen kind, because I hate all of the preservatives used in it.  I was really excited when I found this recipe and it was really yummy.

There is something great about using fresh ingredients for a meal.  I don’t mind chopping up a bunch of ingredients.  It’s actually quite soothing.

It makes the rice taste so yummy when you let the juices mix with it for a bit.

Chicken Stir Fry

– 1 c sliced celery

– 1 c sliced carrots

– 1 c chopped onion

– 4 T oil, divided

– 3/4 c each julienned green, red, and yellow pepper

– 3/4 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces

– 1/2 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced

– 1 8-oz can sliced water chestnuts, drained

– 1 1/2 c chicken broth

– 2 T soy sauce

– 2 T vinegar

– 2 garlic cloves, minced

– 1/4 t ground ginger

– 1/8 t cayenne pepper

– 2 T cornstarch

– 1/4 c additional chicken broth

– 3 c hot cooked rice

In a large skillet, saute celery, carrots, and onion in 3 T of oil for 2 minutes.

Add peppers; cook for 2-4 minutes or until crisp tender.  Remove with a slotted spoon to paper towels.  Add chicken, mushrooms and remaining oil; stir fry 4 minutes.

Stir in water chestnuts; cook 2-3 minutes longer or until heated through.  Remove with a slotted spoon to paper towels.

Drain skillet; add the broth, soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, ginger, and cayenne.

Combine cornstarch and 1/4 cup broth until smooth; stir into broth mixture.  Bring to a boil; cook and stir 2 minutes or until thickened.

Reduce heat; return vegetables and chicken to pan.  Cook for 5 minutes or until heated through.

Serve over rice.

6 servings.

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Chicken Quesadilla Wraps

Today I spent the afternoon with my dad.  We are so much alike.  We have the same personality and same sense of humor.  I love spending time with him!

Also, I have been getting back into my love of crafting.  I started making a wreath today that I am in love with.  I will post pictures when it’s finished.

I made these chicken quesadilla wraps one night when my friend came over for dinner.  I really liked them and so did Zack.  She isn’t a big fan of spicy, so these weren’t really her cup of tea.

Try them, though, if you like things that have a little kick!

Chicken Quesadilla Wraps

Makes 2 quesadilla wraps

– 1 1/2 c shredded/chopped cooked chicken

– 1/2 c chopped cooked onion (sauteed until tender)

– 2 T chopped jalapeno peppers

– 6 T chopped lowfat cheddar or monterey jack cheese

– 2 9″ flour tortillas or wraps

– 1 T olive oil

Insert plates on griddler onto grill side (or preheat regular grill to high).  Preheat to high with unit closed.  In a small bowl, combine the chicken, onion, and jalapeno peppers.  Sprinkle half the cheese in the center of each tortilla.  Top with the chicken mixture, keeping the chicken mixture in a log and 1 1/2″ wide and 4-5″ long in the center of each tortilla.  Fold one side over the filling lengthwise to cover, fold top and bottom over short sides to cover, then fold last side over wraps to close.  Turn over so that the flap is on the bottom.  Lightly brush the tops and bottoms of the wraps with the olive oil.  Place quesadilla wraps on preheated grill or griddler.  Close, using medium-light pressure.  Grill for 3 1/2 – 4 minutes, until tortilla is warm with grill markings, filling is warm and cheese is melted.  Serve with salsa if desired.

Sweet Soy Glazed Chicken & Onions

As everyone can definitely tell, I’m always looking for new ways to try out chicken.  Chicken is so versatile and delicious almost any way it is prepared.

This was great.  The recipe definitely only serves two, but it could easily be doubled or even tripled if need be.

Zack hates ginger, so he is always apprehensive when a recipe calls for it, but you could not taste it in this dish.  It meshed so well with the rest of the flavors.

Sweet Soy Glazed Chicken & Onions

Serves 2.

– 2 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces

– 1/2 an onion, sliced thinly

– 1 T cornstarch

– 1 T water

– 1/3 c soy sauce

– 1/3 c sugar

– 1/4 c cider vinegar

– 1/2 t garlic powder

– 1/2 t ground ginger

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Grease a 9×13 baking pan and add the cut up chicken and sliced onions.  Set aside.

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the cornstarch and water until completely smooth.  Add in the rest of the ingredients and whisk until combined, bring to a simmer, and allow to cook until thickened, about 8 minutes.  Make sure you keep stirring everything so it doesn’t burn while it cooks.

Pour the sauce over the chicken and stir to make sure everything is well coated.  Bake for 25-30 minutes, until everything is cooked through.

Breaded Chicken Breasts with Light Raspberry & Walnut Pan Sauce

In my French class in high school, we would take an annual field trip to a French restaurant where we were served a multiple course meal.  It was always a really fun time and the food was AH-MAZING.

One year, I got this chicken with this red sauce on it that I had never seen since then.  I couldn’t even really remember the details of it.

When I saw the recipe for this chicken, I knew it was it.  I was so excited!  I anxiously anticipated trying it (and I had to coax Zack into it, because he was pretty apprehensive about the raspberry-walnut pairing).

We finally got to try it one night and it was exactly like I had hoped!  It was like I was back in high school at the French restaurant.  Zack really liked it, surprisingly.

I also made some cheese sticks with it, but I will talk about those in another post.

Don’t you love recipes that make you reminisce on wonderful past experiences?  Feel free to share any experiences of the like 🙂

Breaded Chicken Breasts with Light Raspberry & Walnut Pan Sauce

– 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, pounded to between 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick

– 1 c buttermilk

– 1/3 c all purpose flor

– 1 1/4 t salt

– 1/4 t cayenne pepper

– shake of black pepper

– 1 1/4 c bread crumbs

– 1/2 c all purpose flour

– 2 T olive oil

– 2 T butter

– 1 c light raspberry-walnut vinaigrette

– 1 oz cream cheese, room temperature

– 3 T fresh parsley, chopped

Preheat oven to 200 degrees.  In a bowl, mix milk, 1/3 cup flour, salt, cayenne pepper, and black pepper.  Place bread crumbs and 1/2 c flour in a shallow dish, such as a pie plate, and stir to combine.  Working with one piece of chicken at a time, dip into mixture, letting excess liquid drip off.  Dredge both sides in bread crumb-flour mixture and place on a platter.  Repeat with remaining chicken.

As you bread the chicken, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Place two chicken cutlets in the pan and cook for 3 minutes or until the underside is golden brown.  Flip and continue cooking for another 3 minutes.  Remove to an ovenproof platter and place in oven to keep warm.  Add remaining olive oil and butter to skillet and cook remaining chicken pieces.

Reduce heat to medium.  Add vinaigrette to skillet and let cook until reduced to a glaze, about 30-45 seconds.  Remove from heat and add cream cheese, stirring with a whisk to blend into sauce.  Stir in parsley.  To serve, divide sauce between four servings, pouring over chicken pieces.

 

Cheesy Chicken Casserole

This is the ultimate comfort food.  It’s crunchy, cheesy, chicken-y, buttery…just overall delicious.  This is another recipe that has been handed down from my mom.  She used to make it for me all the time when I was little.

Zack really likes it, too, so it has become a staple in our household.

This is my first post in a few days.  I’ve been really busy getting everything ready for Thanksgiving.  I made desserts to take to my granny’s dinner on Thanksgiving day.  Now I am preparing for my first ever hosting of a Thanksgiving Dinner.  My parents, stepdad, Zack’s parents, brothers, and grandma are all coming.  I am really excited and really nervous at the same time.  (Yep, I’m cooking the entire traditional spread myself).  The dinner is Sunday, so be expecting a post about it soon after that.

Enjoy this recipe, it’s one of my favorites! 🙂

Cheesy Chicken Casserole

– 1 can (10 1/4 oz) cream of chicken soup

– 1/2 stack Ritz (or other buttery cracker) crackers, crushed

– 1/2 cup cheddar cheese

– 1/4 cup mayonnaise

– 1/2 stick butter, melted

– 2 cups boneless chicken breast, cooked and chopped into bite size pieces (or use canned)

Place chicken in a medium casserole dish.  Mix soup and mayonnaise and spread over chicken.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Melt butter and combine with crushed crackers.  Place on top of cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Rosemary Chicken and Rice Dinner

One of my favorite summer dinners is grilled rosemary chicken.  Since grilling season is taking a back seat, I needed a new way to enjoy this delectable chicken.

I had the idea to cook it in a cast iron skillet, because let’s face it, everything is great cooked in cast iron.

I had some mushrooms left over from a previous dinner, so I threw those into the marinade, too.

Rice was an obvious choice for a quick and easy side dish.

It turned out great.  Just as delicious, in a different way, as the grilled variety.  Plus, the mushrooms were easily some of the best ones I’ve ever had.  The marinade made them incredible.

Rosemary Chicken & Rice Dinner

– 1/3 c red wine vinegar

– 1/3 c olive oil

– 1 t garlic powder

– 1 t rosemary leaves

– 1 t salt

– 1 t Dijon mustard

– 1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into 2 inch pieces

– 1 c brown rice, cooked

– 1 c mushrooms

Whisk together first six ingredients in a small bowl.  Place chicken and mushrooms into gallon size Ziploc bag and pour marinade over it.  Allow to sit 2-24 hours (longer the better).

When ready to make, heat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat.  Add chicken and mushrooms and a small amount of the marinade.  Allow to cook, tossing occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes.

Serve over cooked rice.

Serves 2.

Baked Chicken Strips

My mom has been making these for me all my life.  In other words, I’ve been addicted to these all my life.

They are so much healthier than fried chicken strips (and taste better in my opinion).  I served them with the Chinese Sweet and Sour Sauce last time and Zack said they were a great accompaniment.

These are really easy to make and a meal that anyone will like.  Plus, just like fried fast-food chicken strips, they are good with any condiments that you can imagine.  I’m a big fan of honey myself.

Say NO to McDonald’s and YES to being healthier and eating at home with your families.  🙂

Time for a small rant…  In my hometown, they tore down the old McDonald’s and built a new one that opened a few weeks ago.  The first few days the wait was TWO HOURS.  Two hours for food that is taking time off of your life?! People blow my mind.  I am very against fast food.  I don’t like the unhealthiness of it, their marketing ploys to attract children, or the actual preparation of the food.

Okay, sorry.  I get a little bit opinionated when it comes to fast food.  I wasn’t always like this, though.  I used to eat fast food nearly daily.  Just thinking about it now sickens me.

Baked Chicken Strips

– 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts

– 2 eggs, beaten

– 1 cup Italian bread crumbs

Cut chicken into strips (~3 or 4 strips out of one breast) and wash off.

Put eggs into a bowl and coat chicken in them.

Dip chicken strips into the seasoning.

Put on a baking sheet covered in aluminum foil.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

Italian Chicken Pasta Skillet

This was DELICIOUS.  I think I was an Italian in a previous life, because I cannot get enough Italian food, but this one was to die for.

I gave up cooking the next night so that I could have another heaping plate of this stuff and believe me, that is unheard of.  I really don’t know what exactly made this dish so delicious, but I wanted to eat the entire skillet full.

Zack really liked it, too, thankfully because I can guarantee that we will be having it again.

I’m so thankful to have a guy like him – he’s always so open to trying all the foods that I throw at him everyday.  Even if he thinks something doesn’t sound good, he will still try it.  He is such a good sport.  I’m a lucky girl.


Italian Chicken Pasta Skillet

– 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces

– 1 green pepper, chopped

– 1 small onion, cut into thin wedges

– 1 jar (26 oz) spaghetti sauce

– 2 cups pasta, cooked, drained

– 1 pkg (8 oz) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

Cook and stir chicken in large skillet sprayed with cooking spray on medium heat 5 minutes.  Add vegetables, cook 5 minutes or until chicken is done and vegetables are crisp tender.

Add sauce and pasta; cook until heated through, stirring occasionally.

Stir in 1 cup cheese; top with remaining cheese.  Cover; let stand 2 minutes or until cheese is melted.

For a spicier dish, add 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper with the spaghetti sauce.

Fajitas of Santa Fe

New favorite fajita recipe by far.  These things were amazing.  Every single bit of it was gobbled up.  (Get it?  Gobble gobble?  Turkey day?  Ah, never mind…)

Anyway, I highly recommend this recipe (so does my dad and Zack).  I made this one night when my dad came over for dinner and he was super happy to have gotten to try it.

I think what sets this recipe apart from other fajita recipes is the marinating.  Allowing everything to marinate gives it such a great flavor.  Yum.

Easy and delicious – the perfect go-to Mexican recipe.

Fajitas of Santa Fe

– 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced in strips

– 4 slices red onion, 1/4″ thick

– 2 large bell peppers, sliced into strips (any color is fine)

– 2 tablespoons olive oil

– 1 cup shredded cheese

– 2 tablespoons lime juice

– 2 cloves garlic, minced

– 3/4 cup salsa

– 8 flour tortillas

Marinate chicken, onion and peppers in oil, lime juice, garlic and salsa in refrigerator 2-24 hours.  Stir fry all together until done.  Put chicken and vegetable mix in tortillas.  Top with cheese.  Roll up and serve with extra salsa and/or sour cream.

20 Minute Herbed Chicken

I really like making this recipe.  It brings back good memories.  It was the first recipe I made after Zack and I moved in together.  It’s hard to believe that was almost a year and a half ago.

I felt so accomplished even though this is a very simple recipe.  I’d like to think I’ve come a long way since then, but it’s still nice to whip up simple things like this every once in a while.

Also, my dad told me that he is constantly running into people who say they read my blog…so I’d just like to give a huge “thank you” to all of you.  I really appreciate each and every one of you.

I really love cooking and getting to share this love with so many people is wonderful.

So, enjoy my bit of nostalgia and my little thank you! 🙂

20 Minute Herbed Chicken

Makes 4 servings.

– 1 T olive oil

– 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (about 1 lb)

– 1 can (10 3/4 oz) Cream of chicken soup

– 1/2 T Italian seasoning

– 1/2 c milk

Heat the oil in a 10 inch skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the chicken and cook for 10 minutes or until well browned on both sides.

Stir the soup and milk in the skillet and heat to a boil.  Reduce the heat to low.  Cover and cook for 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.