Classics, Fish & Seafood, Lent

New England Baked Scallops

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A classic New England dish that an turn any weeknight dinner to date night !

Ingredients

24oz of Bay scallops

1 cup crushed Ritz (or similar) crackers

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon garlic salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter, melted

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

Garnish: Lemon slice, chopped fresh chives or parsley

 

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 325º, and set a rack to the second-to-top position.

Wash the scallops and pat dry.

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Arrange scallops in a 8- by 8-inch baking dish. In a small bowl, stir together the breadcrumbs, garlic salt, and pepper. Sprinkle the scallops evenly with the breadcrumb mixture. Pour the butter over all, then sprinkle evenly with the lemon juice. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 20 minutes, then remove foil and bake an additional 10 minutes.

 

Turn the heat up to “broil” and, with the oven door ajar, brown the top for an additional 2 or 3 minutes (keep a constant eye on the dish to avoid burning). Serve hot!

 

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Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch

Frittata of Ham, Mushrooms and Roasted Red Peppers

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Happy New Year ! With the holidays behind us, I am sure we all trying to eat a little better–however, our fridge is probably still full of leftovers.  Ham and eggs are sure to found in the fridge or positively on sale at the market.  With help a jar of store bought marinated mushrooms and peppers you can whip up this super healthy, speedy meal suitable for breakfast, brunch or lunch.

Ingredients:

16 oz of liquid egg whites

1 jar of marinated mushrooms and roasted red peppers

1 ham steak, cubed

1/2 tbsp of dried parsley

1 tsp of olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Method:

Preheat oven to 350F

Saute the cubed ham steak in oil till brown in a oven proof skillet

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Add the jar of peppers and mushrooms and sauté till most of the liquid is drained.

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Add the eggs, parsley, salt and pepper and finish the dish by baking in the oven, for 25-30 mins or till the eggs are set.

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Serve hot or room temperature !

 

Breakfast, Brunch

Pumpkin Apple Breakfast Cups

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This a gluten free, healthy breakfast that has all the flavors of fall.  I made this recipe mostly to clear out my pantry and it turned out really well.  So if you want to clean out the bottom of cereal box and use up the last of pumpkin puree–this is a good go to recipe.  The best part, it tastes like dessert, but it is a healthy breakfast.
So here we go.

Mix 3 eggs, 1/2 cup pumpkin puree, 1/4cup apple butter or applesauce, 1/4 cup almond milk and mix thoroughly –till smooth.

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Fold in 1.5 cups of rice chex cereal and 1/8 cups of dried cranberries.  Add a dash of pumpkin pie spice (or just plain cinnamon) and 1/8 cup of honey or agave.

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Pour into greases ramekins and bake for 40 min in a water bath at 350F.  The top will turn brown and the custard will release from the side of the ramekins.  the custard should spring back to touch.  Its is done !

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Serve warm or even piping hot with maple syrup !

Enjoy !

Breakfast

Ham and Egg cups

 

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Hello everyone ! Long time no see ! Well, as all the other PhD students might sympathize with me, I will be qualifying this semester so I have not had a minute to myself.  I also realized that I have not been eating right too ! Lots of saltines, soda and microwave dinners—everything I dislike about being a student and why I started the blog a year ago in the first place !!!! Anyway, I am trying to cook again so the upcoming recipes will be super quick and super simple ! This is what I made for myself Easter morning since I did not have time to celebrate Easter !

You will need:

Ham slices–the thicker rounds cut in half.  You can you deli meat, just use 4 or 6 slices so that you can generously line the ramekins.

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Once the ramekins are lined, crack one egg into the center.

season with pepper and tarragon.  No salt since the ham tends to be salty.

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Place the ramekins  ( I made a batch of 6) in a baking dish and fill with water.

Bake in a 325 preheated for 15-20 min till the egg sets.

Enjoy hot or warm.

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Indian, Poultry, Quick Dinner

Tandoori Tenders

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Tandoori Chicken, a classic Indian dish. Morelike Indian BBQ made in a Tandoor. Well this is how you would make it if you don’t have a Tandoor and want to save a few bucks (Take out is just overpriced in my opinion). It is also super quick ! It requires a little planning only because you should marinade the chicken overnight–but other than that, it is about 35 minutes to dinner !

Ingredients:

1lb of chicken tenders.

6oz of plain yogurt.

1 Tbsp of the following: chilli powder, onion powder, garlic powder, garam masala

Salt to taste.

Method:

Mix all the ingredients together and pour over the chicken tenders.

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Marinade overnight

Preheat oven to 350 and meanwhile let the chicken come to room temperature.

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Bake for about 25 minutes or till cooked through.

For the last 5-6 minutes, broil on high to get a nice browned top.

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Serve warm with choice of veggie or starch !

Dinner

Couscous stuffed Peppers

Left over chicken and half jar of salsa.  Three peppers and a box of couscous.  That is all you need for this wonderful, hearty spicy dish.  Each bite brings a flavor explosion in your mouth ! This is one of the best dishes I have made–super easy and amazingly delicious.  Try this please and let me know what you think !

Ingredients:

Leftover shredded chicken ( or you can shred a chicken breast)

3/4 cup salsa

1 box of garlic and olive oil flavored couscous

3 peppers, halved and de-seeded (I used the red, yellow and orange–green will work just fine–the taste will be a little more peppery)

1/2 cup breadcrumbs

salt, pepper, chilli powder and cumin to taste.

Method

Cook the whole box of couscous according to the package direction and let it cool.

Meanwhile, half and de-seed the peppers.

In a bowl, mix the couscous, chicken, salsa, salt, pepper, chilli powder and cumin.

Spray the pepper halves with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Stuff the peppers with the couscous mixture and top with breadcrumbs.  You could also top it with pepperjack or cheddar cheese.

 

Bake in a 375F preheated oven till the pepper are soft and the bread crumbs are golden brown, about 45 mins.

 

Serve hot !

Classics, Comfort food

Chicken Cutlets–with a twist

This is not your same old boring chicken cutlets.  No longer will you have to bore yourself ( or your family) with thick pieces of  dry chicken breast hidd.en underneath breadcrumbs.  No more frying to make them juicier and no more baking  only to find that the crust is pale and even soggy.  This is what I do and it is always yummy !  try it and let me know what you think !

Ingredients:

Chicken thighs ( I highly insist on thighs but if you must, use breasts)

1 or 2 eggs depending on how many cutlets you are going to make

equal parts italian style breadcrumbs, sliced almonds and salted pretzels.

Method:

Take your cut of meat and place it on your cutting board and cover it with a plastic wrap.  Now, pound it thin–this will ensure quick cooking and even at a high temperature, it will quick faster before it gets a chance to dry out.

Meanwhile, pulse the pretzels, nuts ( you could use peanuts, cashews or walnuts) and breadcrumbs.  The breadcrumbs bring the familiar flavor of a cutlet, the pretzels add salt and crunch and the nuts adds richness and moisture from their oils.

Dip the pieces of chicken in the beaten egg and transfer to crumb mixture.

Be patient and loving at this step and really press on the crumbs.  If you want a thicker crust, redip in egg and press on the crumbs for a second time.

Arrange chicken on a cooling rack placed on top of a baking sheet and put this into the fridge for a few hours.  At this step you could freeze the cutlets for later or even keep in the fridge overnight.  I normally prepare the cutlets in the morning and bake them right before dinner.

Preheat oven to 350F

Bring the chicken out of the fridge/ freezer and give them a light coating of cooking spray and bake for 15-20 mins.

Serve hot with your choice of sides.  I had left over roasted vegetables to serve with the cutlets.

 

I hope you enjoy this recipe !

 

Classics, Italian

Eggplant Cutlets

A baked version of an Italian classic.  I love making this when I am craving something salty and crunchy and greasy–but the best part about these cutlets are they are vegetarian and healthy.  Pairs perfectly with a bowl of tomato soup.  Ofcourse you could turn it into eggplant parm or even stack it up on a sandwich.  I like it as is with a side of spicy marinara dipping sauce !

Ingredients:

Eggplant cut into rounds, salted and set aside so that the water can drain out

1 or 2 eggs depending on how many cutlets you want to make

1/4-1/2 cup flour

1 cup of italian style breadcrumbs

Methods:

This is as easy as it gets !!!

Once the water has drained out from the eggplant, pat it dry.

Create a breading station, starting with flour, egg, and ending with breadcrumbs.

Note:  I like to season the flour with a good amount of salt and pepper and the eggs with red pepper flakes.

Dip eggplant in flour, shake off excess flour and then dip in egg and them in breadcrumbs.

Once all the cutlets are made you could either freeze them for later use (which I frequently do since fresh eggplant will go bad quickly)

If you are making them immediately, preheat oven to 400F and spray both sides of the cutlets with some cooking spray and bake for 20-25 mins till golden brown and crunchy !

Serve hot !

Classics, Comfort food, Lunch, Quick Dinner, Salad

“Never-dry” Chicken!

Dry, rubbery chicken.  Everyone has tasted that.  Chicken breasts that are tasteless–what a waste to bird !!!  The solution is buttermilk. Slice the chicken breast into thinner pieces and soak them in a buttermilk bath overnight–and you will never have to put a piece of rubber in your mouth ever again !

Ingredients:

1 pound of chicken breast, sliced

herbs and spices of your choice ( get creative, that is the beauty of this recipe!!!!!)

I used:

Parsley, thyme, lots of salt and pepper ( VERYmimportant to season liberally) and dash of hot sauce.

Enough buttermilk to cover the chicken, I used about 1.5 cups

Method:

Mix everything in a large bowl and cover tightly with a plastic wrap and marinade overnight–the longer the better.

At this point, you could bake it or pan sear it, but I like to bake it first and finish it off in the broiler.

Arrange chicken on a cooling rack placed on top of a cookie sheet.  This helps the heat to circulate all over the chicken.

Bake for about 30min (or till cooked through) in a 375 degree preheated oven and then broil on high for 5-10 mins, till parts of the chicken brown up.

The chicken always comes out soft and moist with lots of flavor, but it never really tastes like buttermilk ! I stored this chicken to add to salads or sandwiches or have it as is with a side of roasted veggies.  Yu could even mis it in with pasts or rice.  Make this a fridge staple and you are always minutes away from a healthy satisfying meal !

Breakfast, Treats

Baked Custards

This a take on a microwave pudding my mother would make.  I am lactose intolerant in  weird way.  I can have single slice of pizza and be fine, but slice to would kill me.  Yogurt is ok, only if I a stick a single serving cup ice cream is a sugar bowl of death for me.  However, milk cooked down in custards and puddings never bothered me and once my mother figured that out she would always make this pudding ! It was her super quick way to get me to ‘drink my milk’.  I took the basic recipe and instead of microwaving the mixture I bake it in ramekins and store it in the fridge–it makes breakfast for the week-cold with a drizzle of maple syrup or a dollop of fruit preserves is a perfect protein packed breakfast.  This is also a good go to for an after dinner sweet treat.  Enjoy !

Ingredients:

10 eggs

1 cup Almond milk

1/4 cup sugar ( This will not make it sweet, just enough to add a little flavor to the eggs)

A dash vanilla extract and nutmeg

Method:

This is the simplest recipe ever.  Preheat the oven to 350 and wait till the oven is ready.

Get your ramekins ready.  I only own 5 ramekins which is perfect for the 5 days of the week !  Arrange them in a 9×13 baking pan.

Blend all the ingredients thoroughly and immediately transfer to the ramekins, filling them up to the top.

 

Fill the 9×13 pan with warm water, about half way up the ramekins.

Top with some more nutmeg ( or other warm baking spices) and bake for 30 min or till custard set in the center.

Cool and enjoy !