Monday, February 27, 2017

Chicken Parmesan

Chicken parm is one of those highly debated dishes in the NY metropolitan area. People argue about which restaurant does it best, what constitutes a "properly" made dish, whether it should or should not be consumed on a sandwich, and it all gets a bit tedious.

Frankly, my favorite chicken parm is the kind I make at home because I can enjoy it however I please. I like to use thighs (because dark meat is better than white meat), I use panko breadcrumbs for a thicker, crunchier crust, and I sprinkle a little lemon zest and crushed pepper flakes on top for extra pizzazz. I love chicken parm on a buttery garlic bread for lunch but prefer it served with a side of pasta for dinner.
4 chicken thighs (boneless, skinless)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
¼ cup flour
1 egg, beaten
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
¼ cup + ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
+ olive oil for frying
1 teaspoon crushed pepper flakes
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese

1 cup crushed tomatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
pinch oregano
pinch basil

Monday, February 20, 2017

What I Ate: Falafel Pita

I love homemade Greek food; I'm particularly partial to falafels. I'm all about soaking the chickpeas and adding loads of yummy spices and then deep frying them until they're crisp. Sure, there are restaurants that do a great job, but short of flying to the Mediterranean, I think they're best at home.
Of course, that also means that homemade tzatziki and pita pockets are compulsory. Oh, and if you're not keen on keeping the meal vegetarian, a little chicken souvlaki will hit the spot.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Asiago Cheese Crackers

A few weeks ago, I was feeling rather unwell. It started out with that scratchy pain in the back of my throat on a Friday night and by Monday morning, I'd lost my voice. In my younger days, being sick was just an inconvenience; I could still play and eat and feel fine. Now that I'm older and more fragile, getting sick is a travesty. I lose my appetite (which honestly, I can afford) and I can't do anything without feeling like I might fall over.

During this past illness, I was also feeling really dizzy and nauseated, which meant that even when I made some porridge (I needed something easy to eat because of how sore my throat was), it made me feel super blegh. A few days later when my appetite finally started to creep back, all I wanted to eat was cheese crackers. The problem? We didn't have any at home. The other problem? I was still too dizzy to trust myself behind the wheel of a car.

I ended up whipping up these insanely easy asiago crackers. Seriously, it was a ten minute assembly and then another ten minutes waiting for them to finish baking. I plan on making these again and again to serve with cheese platters and you know, as my own personal snack stash.
Ingredients [yields 3 to 4 dozen crackers]:
1½ cups flour
½ cup butter, cubed
2 oz. asiago cheese, grated
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
¼ to ⅓ cup heavy cream

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Atelier September-Inspired Avocado Toast

Last November, I had the pleasure of visiting Copenhagen for the first time. We went to the sweetest little spot for breakfast, Atelier September, and I got to have some of the yummiest and simplest avocado toast ever. I decided that this was the only way I ever wanted to enjoy avocado toast ever again and I've been true to my word.

We sat at a table in the window by the "kitchen" and watched as the two girls running the show whipped up plate after plate of food. The avocado toast was was made elegantly with thin slices of avocado fanned out on top of the best nutty rye bread and topped with flaky sea salt, chili flakes, and the most important ingredient: lemon zest. The lemon zest elevated the toast to something really special.
Ingredients [per person]:
2 slices bread
½ avocado
lemon zest
sea salt
crushed pepper flakes

Monday, February 6, 2017

What I Ate: Sprinkle Donuts

At my sister's request, I made donuts. I had already prepared a cast iron pan of shortening for something else anyway so she said making donuts was compulsory.
I know it's still weight loss resolution season, but hey, it's fine to treat yo'self once in awhile.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

What I Ate: Stuffed Pork Chops

This was a mish-mosh meal that came together because I really wanted to eat something with golden raisins and there was a can of baked beans in the pantry that I'd completely forgotten about.
The result was a stuffed pork chop. I stuffed it with panko, chopped parsley, garlic, mushrooms, and golden raisins, of course. Plus, I added a little slice of havarti because why not? And then more of the breadcrumb stuffing was sprinkled on top with a drizzle of olive oil so that it could create a nice crispy topping. To eat alongside the pork chop and the canned baked beans, I roasted some potatoes and wilted a little baby kale with some peppers and garlic.
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