Coq au Vin

6 slices bacon, cut into 1 inch pieces
1/4 cup flour
salt and freshly ground pepper
3 chicken breast halves, skinless
3 chicken thighs, skin on, bone in
3 chicken drumsticks
3 tablespoons caramelized garlic olive oil
1/4 cup brandy
2 cups red wine
1 tablespoon tomato paste
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 lb button mushrooms, white or portobello, brushed clean & quartered
10 oz. frozen baby or pearl onions, thawed
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

In a large Dutch oven over medium heat, cook the bacon until crisp, 4-5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, drain on paper towels. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of bacon fat from the pot.

Read More
Advertisements

Rainy Day Comfort

It has been raining for 3 days straight and there doesn’t seem to be reprieve in the near future. What is it about dreary, cold weather that tends to inspire a bit of comfort food? Pasta almost always fits the bill, and is a good compliment to most any protein – chicken, beef, veal, or pork. While I hope to complete a post very soon for homemade pasta, there’s nothing wrong with simplifying your menu with a store bought fresh pasta. For this recipe, I decided on a spinach and ricotta ravioli from Giovanni Rana along with their marinara sauce to pair with chicken tenderloins.

Baked Chicken & Ravs

Baked Chicken & Ravioli

Serves 3-4

3/4 lb. chicken tenderloins
1-2 tsp. Alpine Touch seasoning
1/2 tsp. pepper
1-2 tsp. Divine Inspired seasoning

10-oz. package Giovanni Rana Spinach & Ricotta Ravioli
15-oz. container Giovanni Rana Marinara Sauce

3 tbls. cream cheese, cubed
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 tsp. dried parsley

Read More

Apricot Glazed Chicken

A dear teacher friend in The Netherlands introduced me to goat cheese close to twenty years ago. Mary is an American, married to a Dutch man, and was a fellow teacher for the Department of Defense Schools in Germany. I believe it was at least one of their four boys with a cow’s milk allergy and therefore she served goat cheese with the local fresh baked brötchen (German bread similar to a French loaf). I had no idea what I’d been missing – the creamy texture and mild flavor, spread over the warm bread – a perfect pairing with salami, prosciutto and fresh fruit! I can still taste the wonderfulness.

Ever since that day, a salad or entree made with goat cheese will certainly get my attention. For instance, when we lived in middle Georgia, The Rookery in downtown Macon serves a Chevre Chicken entree made with grilled chicken, fresh chevre, prosciutto, sun-dried tomatoes, and green onion. I highly recommend it. In fact, I’m not sure I tried anything else on the menu as it was my absolute favorite! Recently, I was inspired to stuff chicken with goat cheese and somehow integrate a jar of homemade apricot preserves hanging out in the pantry. After a couple hours at the local ski hill followed by a 2 mile hike on a slushy trailhead with the dogs, we were more than ready for dinner, and I couldn’t have been more pleased with the results.

Read More

Chicken ‘N Gnocchi

This should have posted four or five days ago, not sure what happened, but better late than never… An evening dinner out at a local restaurant inspired me to try and replicate its recipe for butternut squash gnocchi. After a trip to the grocery store, I was armed with a package of gnocchi and a fresh butternut squash. Squash has always been one of my favorite vegetables, so I often look for creative ways to use the funky shaped gourds.

While the recipe I selected as a guide turned out absolutely nothing like the restaurant version I was striving for, it is tasty enough to share and rounded out a lovely home cooked meal.

Butternut Squash Gnocchi

1 pound butternut squashbutternut squash gnocchi
2 tbls. olive oil
salt & pepper, to taste
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chicken stock
1 lb. gnocchi
4 thick slices bacon
1-2 tbls. fresh minced parsley

Preheat the oven to 400º. Peel the squash and then cut in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds. Cut into 1/2 inch cubes. Using a gallon ziploc bag, add squash, olive oil and seasonings. Seal and toss to coat. Roast in a single layer on a sheet pan until golden and tender, about 25 minutes. Read More