Sunday, August 9, 2015

Greek Yogurt Chicken-Secret Recipe Club

Ellie, who writes The Hobo Kitchen, my assignment for this month’s Secret Recipe Club, was born in The Bahamas, but has lived in the United States for some time.  She currently lives in Hoboken, NJ, and her blog’s name is a nod to that fact.  Ellie has been blogging since 2008, and until last year, her bog was called The Bitchin’ Kitchen.  That blog is still available over at Blogspot, but Ellie transferred all the recipes from there to The Hobo Kitchen blog.

Ellie writes a series of posts called Living the Life about life in the big city which is fun for this life-long rural/small town gal to read.

Of course, there are lots of delicious sounding recipes, several which use Nutella, one of my favorite things.  I considered making the Nutella Donuts, but it has been very hot here still so I am reluctant to use the oven.  I also want to make the Bahamian Macaroni and the One Pot Cheeseburger Casserole.

We eat lots of chicken at our house so I finally decided to make the Greek Yogurt Chicken even though I would need to use the oven.  What could be easier than putting chicken pieces in a baking pan, mixing some yogurt, seasoning and cheese together, spreading it on the chicken and shoving it in the oven?  Not much.  I am so glad that I made this.  It was delicious and will be appearing on our table often.  Great for any day, but also elegant enough for company.

I made two slight changes.  I did not have a chunk of Parmesan cheese the day I decided to make this, so used an already shredded Parmesan/Romano cheese blend.  I also used smoked paprika for the paprika.  I had a large container of Greek yogurt on hand so used 1/3 cup which I figured should be about the same as a 5-ounce container.  The yogurt acts as a binder for the seasonings and cheese.  I think that you could use sour cream in a pinch, but then it wouldn't be Greek Yogurt Chicken.

This topping  is the thing here, and I think that it could easily be used on chicken thighs and pork chops.  Ellie also suggests salmon and vegetables.  I suspect that the topping might also be very good spread on sturdy crackers and baked briefly in the oven for a great appetizer.

Greek Yogurt Chicken
from the Hobo Kitchen
4 boneless chicken breasts (about 1.75 lbs.)
1 t. seasoning salt
1/2 t. black pepper (I used coarse ground)
1/2 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. paprika
1/2 t. dried oregano
1/3 cup or one 5 oz. container Greek yogurt
1/2 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese ( I used a Parmesan/Romano cheese blend)
extra cheese for topping

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Spray a 7x11-inch pan with cooking spray and place chicken breasts in pan.  Measure the seasoning salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika and oregano in small bowl.  Stir in the yogurt and cheese mixing until everything is incorporated.  Cover the chicken breasts evenly with the yogurt mixture.  Sprinkle some additional cheese over the yogurt mixture.  Bake, uncovered, about 45 minutes or until the chicken is no longer pink in the center.  Makes 4 servings.

A visit to The Hobo Kitchen will be well worth your time.

If you are interested in joining in the fun of SRC, vist this page to learn more.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Always-Ready Red Peppers

It is no secret that I put red peppers in just about every savory recipe I make.  Red peppers can add a lot of color and nutrition to a dish.  Here in my area red peppers sell at anywhere from $1.00 to $2.00 each.  This can make them somewhat expensive to use.  That is the bad news.  The good news is, that most summers, I can get them at produce stands for as little as .50 each.  That is when I stock up and freeze them.  Since we are in a drought situation this summer, I don’t know if I will be able to get red peppers for .50 this year, but I hope so.  If I can, I will be stocking up again.

Freezing red peppers is very easy and requires no additional work beyond chopping them up.  I chop mine into about 1/2-inch pieces, place the pieces on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and freeze them overnight.  I then transfer the pepper pieces to a zip-top bag and remove whatever amount I want for the dish I am making.  This makes it so quick and easy.  I even toss a handful of the frozen red pepper pieces into salads just before serving.  They will thaw just enough to remain crunchy when the salad is eaten.

If you have never tried freezing red peppers, give it a try.   Of course, you can freeze any other color of bell pepper this way, too.  I just happen to love the red ones.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Cornflake Marshmallow Cookies-Secret Recipe Club

Every month I look forward to getting the email with my blog assignment for Secret Recipe Club.  It means that I can go and secretly check out someone’s blog, choose some terrific recipes to try and post one here on Reveal Day.

My assignment this month was Sarah's Kitchen.  Sarah is a gal from Kent, England who now lives in Texas.  She became an American citizen in 2010.  Sarah has been blogging since 2008 so there were lots of wonderful recipes to choose from

Since we are great fans of cubed steak, I had to make Steak Fingers.  I made them with both beef and pork cubed steak, and we like them very much.

Always looking for new potato recipes, I found Fresno Potatoes and Greek Lemon Potatoes.  I also found No Knead Bread, Processor Danish Pastries, and Sweet Corn Tamale Cakes.  All of these recipes have something in common, and that is that they require baking in an oven.  Unfortunately, we have hade 100+ degree heat for some time now, and I certainly didn’t want to use the oven, so I won’t be making these until the heat cools down.

However, even though it is hot, the Cornflake Marshmallow Cookie recipe kept calling my name, and I finally succumbed even though it, too, requires the use of the oven.  I decided that I could make the Cornflake Crunch early in the day and bake the actual cookies late in the evening, which is what I did.

I had about 1 1/2 c. more Cornflake Crunch than I needed for the cookies.  It was very good just to munch on, but I have an idea to use it up which I will post later.  I was a little concerned about the amount of salt called for in the cookie part of the recipe so I reduced it to 3/4 t.

I used a 1/4 c. ice cream scoop to form my cookies so they were probably a bit smaller than Sarah’s cookies as she used 1/3 c. for each one.  I formed all my cookies and put them on a parchment-lined baking sheet and put that in the fridge to chill.  I put 4 cookies at a time on another parchment-lined baking sheet to bake.  The cookies spread a lot, so more than 4 cookies spread into each other.

It may have been my oven, but 375 degrees was too high, and the first pan of cookies burned.  I reduced the heat to 350 degrees, baked the cookies for 15 minutes and they came out perfect.  The cookies do need to sit a bit before they are removed from the pan.  I just very carefully slid the parchment paper with the cookies onto a counter, lined my baking sheet with a new piece of parchment paper and continued baking.  These are very BIG crispy, crunchy somewhat delicate cookies.  I suggest that they be served with a napkin to catch the crumbs.  They will certainly satisfy any cookie cravings you mightbe  having.

Go visit Sarah’s blog and find yourself some great recipes.

Cornflake Marshmallow Cookies
From Sarah’s Kitchen
Cornflake Crunch
5 c. corn flakes
1/2 c. dry milk powder
3 T. sugar
1 t. salt
9 T. butter, melted

1 c. butter (2 cubes), softened
1 1/4 c. sugar
2/3 c. light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 egg
1/2 t. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. flour
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
3/4 to 1 1/2 t. salt (you choose)
3 c. Cornflake Crunch
2/3 c. mini chocolate chips
1 1/4 c. mini marshmallows

To make the Cornflake Crunch, place cornflakes in a large mixing bowl and crush well with you hands. Add the milk powder, sugar and salt.  Pour in the butter and stir until well blended. Spread mixture onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.  Bake at 275 degrees for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool.  Then break up with your hands.

To make the cookies, put butter and sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer.  Cream together for 2 minutes.  Add eggs and vanilla and beat for 8 minutes  Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Stir to blend.  Reduce mixer speed to low and add dry ingredients, mixing just until combined.  Remove bowl from mixer and stir in Cornflake Crunch, chocolate chips and marshmallows with a spoon or spatula.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Scoop 1/4 to 1/3 c. mounds onto the baking sheet.  Cover with cling wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Heat oven to 350-375 degrees.  Remove 4 cookie mounds from fridge and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.  Bake for 15 to 18 minutes.  Let cool for at least  5 minutes before removing from baking sheet or carefully slide parchment paper onto a counter, cut a new piece of parchment paper and continue baking.

The cookies will be big-5 or 6 inches in diameter.  They are somewhat delicate so handle carefully.  Makes about 18 cookies.

You can find all the details about joining in the fun of Secret Recipe Club here.

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