Fried Tilapia

This is basically the same as the breaded chicken recipe except for this I used talapia. You first dip the talapia in flour, then egg, then panko bread crumbs. Then fry in a pan with a generous amount of oil. Very simple and a good crowd pleaser. Panko bread crumbs are japanese and are much better than using italian bread crumbs because they create a crispier, flakier crust on the fish (or chicken).

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Braised Chicken Thighs with Button Mushrooms

This recipe was delicious! But warning: it is hard work. There are a lot of steps in this recipe that makes the cooking time a little long, but it is well worth it! Rice is the perfect side for this dish because its great to mix together with the sauce. This is a very rich dish and very satisfying.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 chicken thighs
  • 1 tablespoon Essence, recipe follows
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 16 ounces button mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup sliced yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups dark chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 4 cups steamed white rice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves

Directions

Set a 10-inch, straight-sided saute pan over medium-high heat and add the oil. Season the chicken thighs with the Essence, salt and pepper. Place the chicken, skin side down in the pan and sear until golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the chicken over and sear on the second side for another 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pan and add the butter and mushrooms. Saute the mushrooms, stirring occasionally, until browned and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the onions and garlic to the pan and saute for 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle the flour into the pan and cook, stirring often to make a light brown roux, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste, stock and rosemary to the pan, bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Return the chicken to the pan, skin side down and cook the chicken for 30 minutes. Turn the chicken over and cook until the meat is very tender, about 30 minutes. Serve the chicken over rice and garnish with the chopped parsley.

Emeril’s ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme

Combine all ingredients thoroughly.

Yield: 2/3 cup

Found at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/braised-chicken-thighs-with-button-mushrooms-recipe/index.html

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Orange-Sesame Pork Chops with Teriyaki Whole-Wheat Noodles

This is a very delicious dish. One of the great things about it is that you can make it diabetes friendly by using sugar free marmalade. While making the pasta I used the entire bag of edamame because we did not have use for half a frozen bag of them. However, I do not suggest you do this because there were too many. Also, make sure the pork is fully cooked through. It will most likely take longer than the recipe says to cook.

Ingredients

·   Salt

·   1 pound whole-wheat or whole-grain spaghetti

·   5 tablespoons vegetable or light oil

·   5 boneless pork loin chop 1 1/2-inches thick

·   Freshly ground black pepper

·   3 tablespoons orange marmalade

·   6 tablespoons teriyaki sauce

·   1 teaspoon sesame oil

·   1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced on an angle

·   1 cup shelled, frozen edamame

·   1 tablespoon black sesame seeds or toasted sesame seeds, optional

Directions

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for pasta, and cook pasta to al dente.

While pasta cooks, heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season chops with salt and pepper and cook 6 minutes on the first side, 4 to 5 on the second. Remove chops to a plate and reserve, cover with foil. Add 3 tablespoons orange marmalade, a couple tablespoons teriyaki sauce and a 1/4 cup of water to the pan, bring the sauce to a bubble and combine 1 minute, stir in sesame oil remove from heat.

While the chop cooks, heat a second skillet with 3 tablespoons oil over medium high heat. Stir-fry the scallions and edamame a couple of minutes. Drain pasta and toss with scallions and edamame and remaining teriyaki sauce, about 1/4 cup. Sprinkle noodles with sesame seeds, if desired.

Slice pork or leave chop whole and top with orange-sesame glaze. Serve teriyaki noodles alongside.

Found at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rachael-ray/orange-sesame-pork-chops-with-teriyaki-whole-wheat-noodles-recipe/index.html

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Chicken Stir Fry

Chicken Stir Fry

Stir fry is a great quick and easy meal to make. The best part is you can add or take out any vegetables you do or do not like. I mostly followed the recipe below but added waterchestnuts and took out the bok choy (due to poor selection in the super market). To make this meal even easier you can buy prepackaged vegatables that have already been cut up in the fresh produce department at the super market. A great side to serve with this dish is brown rice.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons dark sesame oil, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 pounds chicken breasts, skinless and boneless
  • 1 head broccoli, stems removed
  • 1 dozen mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and julienned
  • 1/4 pound green beans, diced
  • 1 head bok choy, chopped
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons teriyaki sauce

Directions

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add garlic and stir. Place the chicken in the pan and brown 4 minutes on each side. Remove from pan, slice into strips, set aside.

Heat remaining tablespoon of oil in a wok over high heat. Add the vegetables and teriyaki sauce. Stir-fry quickly until the vegetables begin to soften. Add the chicken strips, combine well and continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Serve immediately.

Found at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/chicken-stir-fry-recipe/index.html

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A Taste of Spain

For dinner tonight I made Hake which is a type of white fish. When I was in Spain my host mother made this for me and my family and I loved it. All you do is preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brush the hake lightly with a touch of EVOO. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until fish is cooked through. Right before the fish is done, sauté some sliced garlic in EVOO. When the fish is done cooking, pour the EVOO and garlic mixture over the fish. It is that simple!

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God’s Love We Deliver

Today I started volunteering for an organization called God’s Love We Deliver ( http://www.godslovewedeliver.org/ ). It’s a really great organization that makes meals and delivers them to people with HIV/AIDS, cancer, MS, and other terminal illnesses. I am working as a van assistant, which means I go around with a driver and actually deliver the meals to the homes. Other volunteer opportunities include working in the kitchen (which is what I was originally interested in but all the spots are full). I think God’s Love We Deliver is so wonderful because it brings the joy of healthy and yummy meals to people who really need them. I highly encourage everyone to check it out and see if there are any opportunities for you to help out!

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Honey Mustard Salmon

Ingredients

• 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

• 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

• 2 tablespoons honey

• 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

• 4 (5-ounce) salmon fillets

• Salt and ground black pepper

• Cooking spray

Directions In an oiled shallow baking dish, combine lemon juice, Dijon, honey, and lemon zest. Stir together. Season both sides of salmon fillets with salt and pepper and place in the baking dish. Flip salmon to coat in glaze. Bake immediately or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 3 hours. When ready to cook, preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Bake 10 minutes or until fish is fork-tender. Recipe found at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/robin-miller/honey-mustard-glazed-salmon-fillets-recipe/index.html

Comments: The salmon does NOT cook in 10 minutes. I had to cook my fillets for almost 30 minutes. Granted, I like my salmon on the more well down side, however, cook the salmon for at least 20 minutes so it isn’t raw. The salmon turned out to have, in my opinion, a very mild flavor. On the other hand my mother did not really like it. If you do not enjoy mustards than this is not the recipe for you. But if you like mustard than this is a quick and easy recipe to try and spice up your boring salmon.

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Mussels Marinara

Ingredients

·   3 tablespoons light oil or olive oil

·   1 small white onion, finely chopped

·   4 large cloves garlic, finely chopped

·   1 cup white wine

·   2 or 3 cans chopped plum tomatoes (32 to 48 ounces total)

·   1 tablespoon fresh chopped oregano leaves

·   1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley leaves

·   Salt and pepper

·   4 pounds fresh mussels, de-bearded, scrubbed and rinsed

·   Pasta, as an accompaniment or bruschetta for dipping

·   1 tablespoon fresh chopped basil leaves

Directions

Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until cooked. Add the wine and reduce by half, then add the plum tomatoes, oregano and parsley. Add the mussels to the pan and allow to cook for about 10 minutes until all the mussels are open. Transfer mussels to a platter. (Discard any mussels that do not open.)

You can mound some pasta in the center of the plate surrounded by the mussels or have some bruschetta handy for dipping into the sauce.

Adjust the seasoning for the sauce with salt and pepper, as necessary. Coat the mussels with the sauce and sprinkle with fresh chopped basil just before serving.

Recipe found at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/robert-irvine/mussels-marinara-recipe/index.html

Comments: Great recipe! My family and I are big lovers of mussels. After returning home from Spain (and eating mussels almost every day in Barcelona) I was inspired to try to make them myself. I found this to be a really simple recipe that, when presented to guests, really looks great and wows everyone. Serving with pasta (I like angel hair) tastes great. The main tip I have is to make sure you wash the mussels thoroughly before starting to cook. I accidently forgot to wash them before I began cooking everything else and had to frantically scrub.

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Balsamic Chicken Cutlet over Spinach Salad with Mushrooms, Bacon, and Warm Shallot Dressing

Found this on the Food Network website. It sounded promising so I tried it. I would suggest trying it but with a few tweaks. When I made it I found the salad to be very heavy. I suggest you make less dressing and only toss the salad RIGHT before serving, so the spinach won’t wilt as much.

Ingredients For 4 servings:

• 1 1/2 pounds chicken breast cutlets (sometimes marked “thin cut”)

• 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, enough to just coat the breast slices

• 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, just eyeball it

• Grill seasoning blend, or coarse salt and pepper

• 4 stems fresh rosemary, leaves stripped and finely chopped, about 2 tablespoons

Spinach Salad :

• 1 pound center cut bacon , chopped into 1-inch pieces

• 1 pound fresh spinach leaves, trimmed and cleaned

• 8 gourmet white stuffing mushrooms , thinly sliced

• 8 radishes, thinly sliced

• 4 scallions, thinly sliced on an angle Dressing :

• 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, eyeball the amount, plus 1 tablespoons

• 1 large shallot, minced

• 3 rounded spoonfuls Dijon mustard

• 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Individual portion:

• 1/2 pound boneless chicken breast cutlets

• 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar, 2 splashes • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, eyeball the amount

• Grill seasoning, such as Montreal Seasoning by McCormick, or, coarse salt and black pepper

• 1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves stripped from stem and finely chopped

• 4 slices center cut bacon

• 1/4 pound fresh spinach, trimmed and cleaned

• 2 gourmet white stuffing mushrooms, thinly sliced

• 2 red radishes, thinly sliced

• 1 scallion, thinly sliced on an angle

• 1/2 shallot, chopped

• 1 /4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, just eyeball it

• 1 rounded spoonful Dijon mustard

• 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Directions Coat chicken with balsamic, oil, seasoning and rosemary and set aside. In a skillet, add chopped bacon, work in 2 batches if preparing salad for 4. Brown bacon over medium high heat, then transfer the bits to a paper towel lined plate to drain. Using center cut bacon will cut down on the pan drippings that spatter. Coarsely chop spinach leaves and add to salad bowl. Top with mushrooms, radishes, scallions. Season salad with salt and pepper. Wipe out the bacon pan and return to stove turning heat back to medium low. Add 1 tablespoon oil for your dressing and shallots and reduce heat to medium. Saute shallots for 3 minutes. Remove oil and shallots from heat. In a bowl, combine mustard and balsamic vinegar. Stream in 2/3 cup oil slowly while whisking the dressing to emulsify it. Add warm shallots and toss with spinach salad to coat evenly. Add cooked bacon and toss again. Preheat a nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Cook chicken cutlets, 4 minutes on each side, in a single layer. Slice breasts on an angle on your cutting board once they are all out of the pan. Pile spinach salad on to dinner plate/plates. Top each salad with 2 sliced chicken cutlet pieces. For individual portion follow the above method. Found at:http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rachael-ray/balsamic-chicken-cutlet-spinach-salad-mushrooms-bacon-warm-shallot-dressing-recipe/index.html

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Langoustines & Spinach Pasta

This is  a recipe I came up with when fooling around in the kitchen. It was really easy to make and very yummy.

Ingredients:

Extra Virgin Olive oil

Pasta

Package of frozen Langoustines

One lemon

Minced garlic

Package of frozen spinach

Mrs. Dash Italian blend

Pepper

Directions:

Bring water to a boil to cook the pasta

In a large skillet pour enough olive oil to coat the bottom let simmer on a medium heat

Add two teaspoons of minced garlic

Chop defrosted spinach and add to the skillet

Strain pasta but do not rinse

Add langoustines to the skillet

Squeeze juice from one lemon into skillet

Add pasta to skillet

Toss and serve!

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