Tag Archives: Thyme

Herb Crusted Sweet Potato Bites

Herb Crusted Sweet Potato Bites

(adapted from How Sweet It Is)

serves about 8

4 sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into uniform rounds

1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup panko bread crumbs*

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil*

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley*

1 teaspoon fresh thyme*

2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed*

2 teaspoons finely grated parmesan cheese*

1/4 teaspoon pepper

Pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Place a nonstick wire rack on a baking sheet.

In a small bowl, combine panko, parsley, basil, thyme, parmesan, salt, pepper and garlic. Mix up with your hands to get everything combined.

If you like, peel the sweet potatoes (or not) and slice into rounds about 1/4 of an inch thick. Place in a larger bowl and drizzle with olive oil, then flip around your hands to make sure each piece is coated. Add in panko and herbs, tossing again with your hands and pressing lightly to adhere. Some will stick – some will not. Place potato rounds on the wire rack, and then sprinkle the remaining panko and herbs over the potatoes.

Bake for 25-28 minutes, or until crust is golden and sweet potatoes are soft. After making and serving the potatoes bites, I found that some thicker slices were a bit harder or still had a crunch to them (meaning they were not cooked all the way through). Though I did no try doing this, I think baking the slices of sweet potato for a few minutes before adding the herb and panko mixture would make them perfect. I recommend baking them before adding the mixture because the breadcrumbs crisp up just right in the normal baking time (and you don’t want them burned!).

*In regards to the amount of herbs and bread crumbs for the mixture: You can really play with the amount you use. I followed the recipe as a guideline, but because I was making for a larger crowed I added more as I went based on how much I wanted the sweet potato slices covered.


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Wednesday Wine Night

Earlier this year, a small group of my girlfriends decided we wanted a regular gathering every month or so. Thanks to Jordy, ‘Wednesday Wine Night’ began in the Fall! The idea is simple: every 4-6 weeks a different person in the group would have everyone over, serve wine, and prepare some offerings to snack on. Though I am allergic to wine, and we do not always meet on a Wednesday, this has been a great way to have a relaxing night with girlfriends. This past Monday the group came over to my apartment, which I took as an opportunity to try and wow everyone with my food. The menu consisted of:

  • Homemade sun-dried tomato hummus with veggies
  • Herb crusted sweet potato bites
  • Greek quinoa salad
  • Roasted red pepper pizza with a splash of balsamic
  • Lots and lots of wine & desserts

Thankfully, my wonderful friends loved the meal! I had been nervous about the pizza because it was the first time I used a real pizza pan, but the crust came out perfectly crisp. Everyone enjoyed the sweet potato bites because they were something tasty and different. One of the best compliments to the chef was when a few people asked for the recipes! Most importantly, everyone had a great time with each other chatting about life and nibbling the food.

For now, feast your eyes on some photos from the evening. Recipes to come individually!

Herb Crusted Sweet Potato Bites

Greek Quinoa Salad

Roasted Red Pepper Pizza

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Show-Stopper Roast Chicken

There is nothing more impressive to guests, or your stomach, than a perfectly roasted chicken. What seems like a complicated feat is actually one of the easiest and best recipes to have in your repertoire. This particular recipe is great to serve to your special guy (can you say new *engagement chicken!?) because it is wrapped in BACON! Who doesn’t love bacon? Ok, my roommate doesn’t like bacon, but I don’t need to make this for her. But any single, hungry guys out there are welcome to come over for dinner!
But seriously, how amazing does that look? Lets get into making it. You will need the following ingredients:
1 roasting chicken, about 6 lbs
Kosher salt and pepper
1 bunch of fresh thyme
4 lemons
3 heads of garlic cut in half
2 tablespoons of melted butter
1/2 lbs of sliced bacon
1 cup of white wine
1/2 cup of chicken stock
First, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Remove chicken giblets (anything inside of the chicken) and rinse the entire chicken both inside and out. Pat the outside dry and place the chicken in a large roasting pan. Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the chicken and stuff the cavity with the thyme (saving enough to garnish the dish later), 1 halved lemon, and 2 halves of garlic. Brush the outside of the chicken with butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string (or, if you are like me and forget to buy kitchen string every time you go to the store, don’t tie them) and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken. Quarter 2 of the remaining lemons and place around the chicken with the rest of the garlic. Lastly, lay slices of bacon over chicken until it is covered (this is obviously the best part!).

Put chicken in the oven and roast for 1 hour. After this time, remove the bacon from the chicken and set aside. Finishing roasting the chicken for another 1/2 hour, or until the juices run clear when you cut between the leg and thigh. When the chicken is done, set aside and cover to keep warm so you can make the gravy.

Using the fat drippings at the bottom of the roasting pan, add the wine and chicken stock and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes or until reduced by half.

Everything is now ready to come together! Place the chicken on a nice serving dish and garnish with the bacon, roasted garlic, reserved fresh thyme, and the remaining lemon sliced. Serve the gravy on the side and enjoy!

As you can see above, I served the chicken with sides of sautéed zucchini and small roasted potatoes. The zucchini is one of my go-to vegetable sides that is easy to make and very delicious. The cute little potatoes are also great with the chicken because not only are the tasty (and of course every good chicken meal needs a potato side) but they are fun to eat because they are so small! When making small potatoes like this, the key is to buy them all in similar size so they cook evenly.

Slice up the chicken, load up the plates, and enjoy! I lucked out and the chicken breasts were perfectly juicy and moist. Ladle some gravy on your plate for a little extra flavor (I found it to be dominantly wine flavored, which I enjoyed). This simple but delicious meal will wow guests and provide ample leftovers for you to enjoy later! Enjoy your Show-Stopper Roast Chicken!

*For those of you who don’t know what engagement chicken is, it basically is a simple but amazing recipe for roast chicken. The story goes that a girl who makes this roast chicken for her significant other will soon after be proposed to because it is just that good. Hence, engagement chicken!
**This recipe is my version of Ina Garten’s Lemon & Garlic Roast Chicken
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