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Friday, September 11, 2015

Crispy Chicken Parm


Here is a quick meal, believe it or not that you should be able to prepare in under 28 minutes.

You were probably waiting all summer for this.....

INGREDIENTS:

4 chicken breasts, pounded 1/2" thick

  • kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 c. panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 c. grated Parmesan
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. canola oil
  • 4 oz. fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 c. marinara sauce, store-bought or homemade
  • 1 c. grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 c. chopped basil, plus more for garnish

  • DIRECTIONS:
    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line baking sheet with parchment. Season chicken with salt and pepper. In shallow bowl, combine panko and Parmesan and season with salt and pepper. Place eggs in another shallow bowl. Dip each chicken breast into eggs, then dip into bread crumb mixture, turning to coat. Place breaded chicken on prepared baking sheet.
    2. Heat olive oil and canola oil in large, ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add breaded chicken and cook until golden, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Cover each chicken breast with slice of mozzarella and transfer to oven until mozzarella is melted and chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes.
    3. Meanwhile, warm sauce on stovetop and stir in tomatoes and basil.
    4. Spoon sauce over chicken and garnish with fresh basil. Serve with green salad or a side of sautéed spinach.

    There now does that look hard? It's not if you go shopping the day before and have all of the ingredients ready when you get home...

    Enjoy!   Eat well my friends!

    Monday, September 7, 2015

    SouthWest Salsa Burger

    Happy Labor Day...The last holiday of the summer....No one wants summer to end on a bad note,I know I don't.. So why not go out with a bang? If you’re hosting an end-of-summer cookout or a burger bash over Labor Day weekend, So I've got you covered with this recipe for  an outstanding cheeseburgers


    INGREDIENTS:

    • 1/4 Cup finely chopped shallots
    • 3/8 Teaspoons salt
    • 1/4 Teaspoon ground chipotle chile pepper
    • 1/8 Teaspoon black pepper
    • 1 Pound 90 percent lean ground sirloin
    • 1/4 Cup refrigerated fresh salsa, divided
    • Cooking spray
    • 4 slices reduced-fat Monterey Jack cheese
    • 4 Boston lettuce leaves
    • 4 hamburger buns, toasted
    DIRECTIONS:

     This burger includes a tender sirloin patty made with shallots and spicy chili powder topped with all of the trimmings — and then some. We like to think of this as a beef burrito slammed inside a hamburger bun, with salsa, jalapeños, and Monterey Jack cheese.


    Combine first 5 ingredients and 2 tablespoons salsa in a medium bowl. Divide mixture into 4 equal portions, shaping each into a ½-inch-thick patty. Press thumb in center of each patty, leaving a nickel-sized indentation.

    Heat a large skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add patties to pan; cook 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Top each patty with 1 cheese slice; cook 1 minute or until cheese melts.

    Place 1 lettuce leaf on bottom 1/2 of each bun; top with 1 patty, 1 ½ teaspoons salsa, and bun top.

    Not Hard at all...ENJOY!  Eat Well my friends!

    Tuesday, September 1, 2015

    Cold Spanish Tomato Soup


    It's the end of Summer. As the days wind down...I present something new...A cold soup, which I don't usually endorse...but which I think you should humor me and try just the same..

    It's actually called Salmorejo... It is a very typical cold tomato soup from the south of Spain. It's similar to gazpacho, but creamier, thicker, and more flavorful. The soup is perfect to bring to a party, as it can be made ahead of time.

    Salmorejo is garnished with Serrano ham, or even better, Iberico ham, along with some hard boiled egg and bread croutons. The ham contributes flavor, the bread adds the crunchiness, and the egg gives the whole thing some texture. Make sure to invest in good ham, high-quality olive oil, and very ripe tomatoes.

    INGREDIENTS:


    • 2pounds ripe tomatoes
    • 2 garlic cloves
    • 3 slices of white sandwich bread or country bread
    • 1/2cup extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1teaspoon salt
    • 1tablespoon cider vinegar
    Garnish
    • 2tablespoons chopped Serrano ham (or prosciutto)
    • 1 hard boiled egg, chopped
    • Croutons
    DIRECTIONS:
    1. Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Make a cross with a knife on the bottom of each tomato and put them in the boiling water for 30 seconds, in small batches. This makes removing the skin much easier.
    2. Peel and quarter the tomatoes, then put them in a blender. Add the garlic cloves. Soak the bread in water for a few seconds, squeeze it with your hands, and add it to the blender. Purée until smooth, about 3 minutes depending on your blender.
    3. Open the blender and add the oil, salt ,and vinegar. Put the top on the blender and purée for 10 more seconds. Pour the soup into a bowl and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
    4. Serve in individual soup bowls and garnish with croutons, Serrano ham, and hard boiled egg. Drizzle with olive oil. 
    ENJOY!  EAT WELL MY FRIENDS!


    Food Safety Tips
    Protect yourself against food-borne illnesses.


    1. Use a "refrigerator thermometer" to keep your food stored at a safe temperature (below 40 degrees fahrenheit).

    Cold temperatures slow the growth of bacteria. Ensuring that your refrigerator temperature stays at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or colder is one of the most effective ways to reduce your risk of food-borne illness. You can buy a refrigerator/freezer thermometer at appliance stories, home centers (i.e. Home Depot), and kitchen stores including online ones, such as Cooking.com.

    2. Defrost food in the refrigerator, the microwave, or in cold water... never on the counter!

    Perishable foods should never be thawed on the counter for longer than two hours because, while the center of the food may remain frozen, the outer surface may enter the Danger Zone, the range of temperatures between 40 and 140 degrees fahrenheit, in which bacteria multiply rapidly. If you’re short on time, use the microwave or you can thaw meat and poultry in airtight packaging in cold water. Change the water every half-hour so it stays cold and use the thawed food immediately.

    3. Always use separate cutting boards for raw meat/poultry/fish and cooked foods/fresh produce.

    Bacteria from uncooked meat, poultry, and fish can contaminate cooked foods and fresh produce. An important way to reduce this risk is to use separate cutting boards for raw meat/poultry/ fish, and cooked foods/fresh produce.

    4. Always cook meat to proper temperatures, using a calibrated instant-read thermometer to make sure.

    One effective way to prevent illness is to use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of meat, poultry, and egg dishes. The USDA Recommended Safe Minimum Internal Temperatures are as follows:

    * Beef, veal, and lamb (steaks and roasts), fish - 145 degrees fahrenheit

    * Pork and ground beef - 160 degrees fahrenheit

    * Poultry - 165 degrees fahrenheit.

    Cook meats like roasts and steaks to lower temperatures, closer to medium-rare, so that they retain their moisture. It is recommended that those who are at high risk for developing food-borne illness (i.e. pregnant women and their unborn babies, newborns, young children, older adults, people with weakened immune systems, or certain chronic illnesses) should follow the USDA guidelines.

    5. Avoid unpasteurized/raw milk and cheeses made from unpasteurized milk that are aged less than 60 days.

    Raw milk is milk from cows, sheep, or goats that has not been pasteurized (heated to a very high temperature for a specific length of time) to kill harmful bacteria that may be present. These bacteria, which include salmonella, E. coli and listeria, can cause serious illness and sometimes even death. The bacteria in raw milk can be especially dangerous to pregnant women, children, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems or chronic illnesses. Raw milk cheeses aged 60 days or longer are okay, since the salt and acidity of the cheese-making process make for a hostile environment to pathogens.

    6. Never eat "runny" eggs or foods, such as cookie dough, that contain raw eggs.

    Even eggs that have clean, intact shells may be contaminated with salmonella, so it’s important to cook eggs thoroughly until both the yolk and the white are firm. Casseroles and other dishes containing eggs should be cooked to 160 degrees fahrenheit and you can use an instant-read food thermometer to check. Eggs should always be cooked fully and those who are at high risk for developing foodborne illness (pregnant women and their unborn babies, newborns, young children, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems or certain chronic illnesses should follow the USDA guidelines. If you can’t resist runny eggs or sampling cookie batter, use pasteurized eggs. They’re found near other eggs in large supermarkets.

    7. Always wash your hands in warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds before handling food and after touching raw meat, poultry, or eggs.

    You can pick up a lot of bacteria out in the world, so it’s important to always wash your hands before you eat or prepare food. You should also wash your hands after touching any uncooked meat, poultry, fish, or eggs, as the bacteria from these foods can contaminate cooked foods and fresh produce. Use soap and warm water and wash thoroughly for at least 20 seconds.

    8. Always heat leftover foods to 165 degrees fahrenheit.

    The USDA recommends heating all cooked leftovers to 165 degrees fahrenheit in order to kill all potentially dangerous bacteria.

    9. Never eat meat, poultry, eggs, or sliced fresh fruits and vegetables that have been left out for more than two hours or more than one hour in temperatures hotter than 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

    If you leave perishable foods out of the refrigerator or freezer for more than two hours they may enter the Danger Zone—the unsafe temperatures between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, in which bacteria multiply rapidly.

    10. Whenever there’s a food recall, check products stored at home to make sure they are safe.

    You should discard any food that’s been recalled because it’s associated with the outbreak of a food-borne illness. But, according to a survey conducted by Rutgers University during the fall of 2008, only about 60% of Americans search their homes for foods that have been recalled because of contamination. For more information on food recalls, visit the website Recalls.gov






    Cavier & Vodka
    Courtesy of The Lady (Bug) of the Household