Monday, January 26, 2009

Herb & Cheese Chicken Tenders

This recipe is from Rachel Ray. It's a fun dish to make with the kids. I like getting the kids involved in making dinner. (when I'm not in a hurry, or cranky) They will eat better when they help prepare the dinner. Especially if it's something new or something they don't really like to eat.

This one can be messy. Might I suggest using disposable rubber/latex gloves when coating the chicken tenders. It helps with cross contamination and its easy clean up, especially if you have the kids help. I like to keep a box under my kitchen sink.

Herb & Cheese Chicken Tenders

Light olive oil, for frying
1 & 1/2 pounds chicken tenders
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, beaten with 1/4 cup water

1 & 1/2 cups Italian-Style bread crumbs (eyeball it)
1/2 cup shredded Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (2 to 3 handfuls)
6 sprigs fresh thyme leaves, stripped & chopped (2 to 3 tablespoons)
6 sprigs fresh rosemary, finely chopped (3 tablespoons)
2 handfuls chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Place a nonstick cookie sheet in oven with a foil liner.

Heat 1/2 inch oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium to medium-high heat.

Season chicken tenders with salt and pepper. Place flour in a shallow dish. Beat eggs with water in a second dish. In a third dish, combine the remaining ingredients. Coat chicken in flour, then egg, then breads and cheese mixture.

Add chicken to the skillet and cook until deeply golden on each side, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to hot cookie sheet already in oven and bake for another 5 minutes. Cook 5 or 6 tenders at a time in a single layer, adding additional oil if necessary. If chicken browns too quickly, lower heat slightly. Serve chicken hot or cold with green salad, or complete as a parmigiana (make pasta with a tomato sauce).

Banana Cookies

So you have a few very ripe bananas sitting on your counter and you really don't want to make bread again. Try cookies. Yes, cookies. They are so good. Very cake like. I would like to try them in mini muffin molds.

My sister-in-law (and BMCC member) emailed us this recipe. Try them. They won't last long.

Banana Cookies

·                                 1/2 cup of unsalted butter, room temperature
·                                 1 cup of sugar
·                                 1 egg, room temperature
·                                 1 cup of mashed bananas (about 2 ½ large bananas)
·                                 1 teaspoon of baking soda
·                                 2 cups of flour
·                                 pinch of salt
·                                 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
·                                 1 teaspoon of vanilla
·                                 1 cup of pecans (walnuts and chocolate chips are fine alternatives)

1 Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the egg & vanilla and continue to beat until the mixture is light and fluffy.
2 In a bowl, mix the mashed bananas and baking soda. Let sit for 2 minutes. The baking soda will react with the acid in the bananas which in turn will give the cookies their lift and rise.
3 Mix the banana mixture into the butter mixture. Mix together the flour, salt, and spices and sift into the butter and banana mixture and mix until just combined.
4 Fold into the batter the pecans or chocolate chips if using. Drop in dollops onto parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 11-13 minutes or until nicely golden brown. Let cool on wire racks.
Makes about 30 cookie

Friday, January 16, 2009

Jambalaya from Fun Friday

On Friday mornings I help in my daughters Kindergarten class. They call it Fun Friday for a good reason. They do an art project and it's cooking day. Sound like a fun day to me!

Today's recipe was Jambalaya. Not authentic (not spicy and no shrimp), but so yummy I had to share. Especially since my daughter loved it!

The rule in Kindergarten is if the kids don't like it, they don't have to eat it. The teacher tells them, "I am not your mother and I am not your father." They do need to circle Yum or Yuk on the recipe sheet.

Here is Jambalaya a la Kindergarten

1 lb smoked sausage - sliced
1 lb ground beef
1 green pepper - chopped
1/2 cup green onion - chopped
5 cloves garlic - minced
1-28 oz can diced/chopped tomatoes
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

White Rice - cooked

Brown the ground beef. Brown the sausage. Add onion, garlic and bell pepper. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Stirring occasionally.

Serve over rice.

Serves 4-6

I've been told (I have never had Jambalaya) that you can add shrimp. If you would like it spicy, use spicy sausage and peppers. From what I understand it's a dump type recipe. If there is something you have on hand that sound good, dump it in.

Any other tips and tricks for making Jambalaya? Leave a comment. I would love to hear about other versions. This was so yummy!