SKILLET PASTA with VODKA SAUCE

SKILLET PASTA with VODKA SAUCE
1 bunch green onions or 1 large shallot, thinly sliced
1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 pound sweet Italian sausage
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups vodka pasta sauce, homemade or jarred – your choice
3 cups homemade beef stock
12 ounces penne pasta
1/4 cup chopped marinated sun-dried tomato pieces
1/2-3/4 cup quartered marinated mozzarella balls
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

  • Coat 12 inch non-stick skillet with non-stick cooking spray. I like to use my heavy enameled cast iron crock pot skillet.
  • Heat over medium-high heat.
  • Add beef, sweet Italian sausage, most of the green onions (save some for garnish), FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper to taste, cooking 8-10 minutes and breaking up the meat into small crumbles until meat is cooked through.
  • Add garlic and stir 30 seconds until fragrant.
  • Drain the meat and discard the grease.
  • Add 1/2 cup of the sauce and water to skillet. Bring to boil.
  • Add pasta and red pepper flakes.
  • Cover 10-12 minutes and cook JUST until tender.
  • Stir in meat and remaining sauce, cooking a couple minutes to heat through.
  • Gently fold in Mozzarella ball pieces.
  • Top with scallions and serve immediately.

GARLIC BUTTER PARSLEY CHICKEN 

GARLIC BUTTER PARSLEY CHICKEN          Serves 4 to 6

3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 6)
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
12 ounces FRESH green beans

  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven.
  • Pat the chicken dry with and generously season on all sides with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Trim green beans and cut in half crosswise.
  • Place the chicken thighs skin-side down in a large (12-inch) oven-safe skillet, preferably cast iron, and turn the heat to medium.
  • Cook undisturbed until the skin is golden and crispy, using tongs to move the thighs around the pan after 10 minutes to ensure even browning, 15 to 18 minutes total (they will not be cooked through at this point).
  • Transfer the chicken skin-side up to a clean plate, leaving the rendered fat in the pan.
  • Add 3 tablespoons unsalted butter to pan.
  • Add minced 4 garlic to the melted butter.
  • Add green beans to the pan and generously season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, tossing to coat the beans in the chicken fat and butter garlic mixture.
  • Place the chicken thighs skin-side up on the green beans.
  • Spoon drizzle the garlic butter over the chicken and green beans and transfer the skillet to the oven.
  • Roast until the chicken is deeply golden brown, crispy, and registers 160º in the thickest part, 20-25 minutes.

NOTES: You can substitute frozen green beans, but add them frozen during the last 10 minutes.

SHEET PAN SWEET & SPICY BBQ CHICKEN

SHEET PAN SWEET & SPICY BBQ CHICKEN serves 6
2 1/2 cups ketchup
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup QUALITY honey
1/4 cup chiles in adobo sauce, chopped small
1/4 cup yellow mustard (OPTIONAL) see notes
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
12 bone in pieces of chicken (legs and thighs work best) see notes
2 cloves garlic, FINELY minced
1 bunch green onions, FINELY minced
1/4 cup avocado oil

  • Whisk together the ketchup(s), brown sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, honey, Chipotle peppers in sauce, mustard if using, salt, pepper, garlic salt and onion salt until well blended.
  • Place chicken pieces in a large ziploc bag.
  • Pour marinade over chicken pieces and seal tight.
  • Marinade in refrigerator for AT LEAST 4 hours.

 

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Line baking sheet with heavy duty foil.
  • In a small bowl toss together the avocado oil and onions.
  • Spread the onion and oil mixture onto the foil covered baking sheet.
  • Remove chicken pieces from the bag and place on top of the onion oil mixture in a single layer.
  • Brush with marinade.Reserve remaining marinade.
  • Bake 45 minutes.
  • Brush with reserved marinade again and bake 5 minutes more.
  • Let rest 5-10 minutes.

NOTES:

  • I’m deathly allergic to mustard so I substitute a jalapeno ketchup that works quite well 😀
  • Boneless, skinless pieces can be substituted, BUT be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly! And I cover them for the first half of time with aluminum foil.
  • This recipe adapts to the grill quite easily also!

OVEN BAKED CHICKEN & RICE

OVEN BAKED CHICKEN & RICE

Buttery, garlicky, tender and made entirely in the oven! Dish is flavored well without the gravy, but I highly recommend the super quiclk, easy and flavorful gravy to take it over the top.

6 boneless, skinless chicken thigh fillets or 3 LARGE breasts, halved
1 LARGE Vidalia onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup FINELY chopped carrots
2 cups frozen corn
3 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
1 1/2 cups uncooked white rice (see notes)
1 1/2 cups HOT homemade chicken stock
1 1/4 cups HOT water

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Scatter onions, carrot pieces and garlic in a LARGE 10×15 inch baking dish placing butter in the center.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, stirring mid way to coat well with the melted butter.
  • Meanwhile, mix together the Chicken Rub.

CHICKEN RUB (see notes)
1 teaspoon SMOKED paprika
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

GARNISH
Fresh thyme leaves or finely chopped parsley, if desired

  • Sprinkle on both sides of the chicken with the rub, coating well.
  • Remove baking dish from the oven.
  • Add rice and corn thoroughly mixing with the onion carrot mixture.
  • Whisk together the chicken stock and water.
  • Pour stock mixture evenly over rice, stirring together.
  • Cover with foil and bake 25 minutes more.
  • Remove foil and place seasoned chicken pieces on rice. Replace foil and bake another 20 minutes.
  • Remove foil, brush chicken with melted butter.
  • Return to oven uncovered and bake for another 20-25 minutes more or until ALL excess liquid is absorbed.
Stand for 5 minutes.
  • Remove chicken and fluff up rice.
  • Garnish with parsley or thyme.
  • Serve and enjoy!

GRAVY
2 teaspoons chicken bouillon or 2 “cubes”
2 1/4 cups boiling water
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons WONDRA flour
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Whisk in powder or crumble cubes into boiling water, mixing to dissolve.
  • Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
Whisk in flour, onion powder, salt and pepper.
  • While constantly stirring, slowly pour in half the liquid until well blended.
  • Add remaining liquid and whisk constantly 2-3 minutes – it will thicken quickly.
  • Adjust seasonings if needed.

NOTES:

  • The Chicken Rub can be substituted with any seasonings you want! Lemon Pepper Seasoning, Italian Herb Mix…
  • Chicken breast tenders are also a great substitute. This recipe is VERY forgiving!
  • Rice – Any normal white rice works great here. Long grain white rice will yield the fluffiest rice. Short and medium grain will work fine too but by its very nature, is a bit stickier. Basmati and jasmine are terrific too. If using brown rice add an extra 1/2 cup hot water and bake covered for 1 hour before adding the chicken. DO NOT USE MINUTE RICE or RISOTTO!!!
  • The BIGGEST secret tip is the baking of the onion with garlic with the butter before adding the rice, liquids and chicken! You can short cut this step, but it adds a great flavor base!

 

LEMON THYME CHICKEN ~ 2 WAYS

This is one of those recipes that depends on what cut of chicken and/or which vegetables I have on hand as to which way I make it. 😀

SHEET PAN LEMON THYME CHICKEN (thighs)
1/3 Italian dressing
1 tablespoon FRESH chopped thyme
5-6 thyme sprigs for roasting
4 garlic cloves, FINELY minced
Juice of 1 LARGE lemon
1 LARGE lemon, cut into wedges
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
8-10 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
2 pounds red potatoes, cut into 1 inch pieces
3 LARGE carrots, peeled and rustic chopped (original)
2 tablespoons FRESH, FINELY chopped parsley

  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Whisk together the Italian dressing, garlic, lemon juice and FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper in a large bowl.
  • Add chicken, lemon wedges and potatoes to bowl, tossing well.
  • Add everything to a sheet pan.
  • Turn the chicken skin side up and space pieces evenly apart, nestled with the potatoes and carrots.
  • Roast 50-60 minutes until chicken is golden brown and registers 165°.
  • Remove to a platter.
  • Sprinkle with parsley.
  • Drizzle with sheet pan juices and squeeze the roasted lemon wedges over the chicken.

ROASTED LEMON THYME CHICKEN (breasts)
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 pound green beans, cleaned and trimmed
1 + 1 tablespoon avocado oil
1 tablespoon FRESH chopped thyme
5-6 thyme sprigs for roasting
1 LARGE jar artichokes hearts, drained WELL and quartered
1/4 cup FRESH, FINELY (like powder) grated Parmesan cheese
1 LARGE lemon, halved
1 LARGE lemon, juiced

  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • In a large bowl toss green beans with avocado oil, chopped thyme and FRESH ground sea salt and pepper to coat well.
  • Arrange green beans onto sheet pan.
  • Nestle artichoke pieces, cut side down along with the green beans.
  • Roast on bottom rack 8-10 minutes until golden brown and ALMOST tender.

 

  • In a LARGE oven proof skillet (preferably cast iron) heat remaining avocado oil.
  • Generously season chicken breasts with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Sear chicken 3-4 minutes until golden brown.
  • Flip chicken and sear 2 minutes more.
  • Add lemons cut side down to pan along with lemon juice and thyme sprigs.
  • Arrange green beans and artichokes around chicken breasts.
  • Transfer pan to oven for 5-8 minutes more until chicken is cooked through.
  • Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese and serve immediately.

SHEET PAN HAMBURGER STEAK with MUSHROOMS & ONIONS

SHEET PAN HAMBURGER STEAK with MUSHROOMS & ONIONS

1 large Vidalia onion – halved and sliced thin
1/2 pound of your favorite mushrooms – sliced
avocado oil
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 pounds double ground chuck
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons Lawry’s garlic salt
3-4 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
FRESH ground salt and pepper for each patty
4 tablespoons butter, thinly sliced into eighths

  • Heat oven to 400°.
  • Line a baking pan with tin foil.
  • Place onions and mushrooms on the pan, drizzle with avocado oil, sprinkle with salt & pepper and toss to coat.
  • Gently mix together the ground chuck, Worcestershire sauce, garlic salt, bacon pieces and a generous sprinkling of FRESH ground pepper.
  • Form into 6  steaks.
  • Gently nestle each hamburger steak on top of veggies.
  • Sprinkle with additional salt and pepper.
  • Place pan in the oven and cook for approximately 25-30 minutes, until steaks are brown around edges.
  • Remove from oven and top with pat of butter.
  • Let rest for 5 minutes and serve with with your favorite side dish.

RANCH PORK CHOP SHEET PAN SUPPER

RANCH PORK CHOP SHEET PAN SUPPER adapted from REE
2 tablespoons QUALITY honey
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce 
2 + 1 tablespoons ranch dressing mix 
2 + 1 tablespoons avocado oil
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons FRESH chopped thyme leaves
FRESH ground black pepper, to taste 
4 boneless 1/2 inch thick pork chops  
1 pound baby Yukon gold potatoes, halved 
2 large carrots, cleaned and sliced diagonally

  • Preheat the oven to 475°.
  • Toss the potatoes and carrots with 1 tablespoon of oil, melted butter and 1 tablespoon of the ranch dressing mix and FRESH ground pepper, tossing to coat well.
  • Bake 10 minutes.
  • Whisk together the honey, Worcestershire, 2 tablespoons of the ranch dressing mix, fresh thyme leaves, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and FRESH ground pepper in a small bowl.
  • Brush the mixture over the chops on both sides and place in a single layer on one side of a sheet pan.
  • Bake 15 minutes.
  • Flip pork chops, toss potatoes and carrots with remaining honey mixture.
  • Bake 5-7 minutes more until vegetables are browning and pork is cooked through.

CREAMY CHICKEN, STUFFING & GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE – SLOW COOKER

CREAMY CHICKEN, STUFFING & GREEN BEAN CASSEROLE – SLOW COOKER
3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenders
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
3/4 cup sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup chicken broth
6 ounce box STOVE TOP stuffing mix
10 ounce package frozen green beans

  • Spray the crock insert with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Generously season chicken pieces on all sides.
  • Lay chicken pieces (in a single layer if possible) in prepared crock.
  • Arrange stuffing mix in an even layer on top of chicken pieces.
  • Whisk together the chicken soup, chicken broth and sour cream together until combined.
  • Pour soup mixture over stuffing evenly.
  • Arrange green beans on top.
  • Cover and cook on low 3-3 1/2 hours. If using tenders check on it around 2 1/2 hours.

SHEET PAN RANCH PORK CHOPS

SHEET PAN RANCH PORK CHOPS
5 tablespoons Avocado Oil
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 ounce Ranch dressing dry mix packet
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 LARGE red onion, cut into wedges
1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into strips
2 small sweet peppers (orange and yellow), seeded and cut into strips
4 THICK boneless pork chops
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 cup FRESH, FINELY chopped Parsley

  • Preheat oven to 475°.
  • In a large bowl whisk together Avocado oil, Worcestershire sauce, ranch dressing mix, salt and pepper until well blended.
  • Reserve 3 tablespoons in a small bowl.
  • Add the onions and peppers to the marinade and toss until well coated.
  • Remove the onions and peppers with a slotted spoon and layer evenly on your sheet pan.
  • Bake 15-20 minutes until beginning to soften.
  • Add reserve marinade to bowl.
  • Add pork chops and toss to coat.
  • Sprinkle pork chops with paprika.
  • Add pork chops to sheet pan and bake 7-8 minutes until cooked through and no longer pink.
  • Sprinkle with Parsley and serve immediately.

SHEET PAN VINEGAR CHICKEN

SHEET PAN VINEGAR CHICKEN ala Valerie Bertinelli – update ala Tamy
1 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch-thick wedges
1 1/2 tablespoons avocado oil
6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
2 cups mixed color cherry tomatoes
3/4 cup pitted Castelvetrano (the pale green ones – I use Mezetta) olives
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
2 cloves garlic, sliced or minced
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • Preheat the oven to 425°.
  • Toss the onions with 1/2 tablespoon of the oil on a large rimmed baking sheet.
  • Arrange the chicken thighs on top and sprinkle them all over with the smoked paprika and salt and pepper.
  • Drizzle the vinegar on top and then roast in the oven about 15 minutes.
  • Toss the cherry tomatoes, olives, rosemary and garlic with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, a big pinch of salt and pepper to taste.
  • Add the mixture to the baking sheet with the roasted chicken and continue to roast until the chicken is golden brown and cooked through, 10 minutes more.
  • Serve the chicken with the vegetables and juices from the baking sheet.
  • Sprinkle with the parsley.

SKILLET CHOPS & OVEN BRAISED RAINBOW CARROTS

This recipe came out of a an old (1960’s) cookbook put together for a lake area homeowner’s association. I loved the sound of it, but canned pork and beans use mustard in their recipes and I’m deathly allergic so I had to adapt it and the flavor profile was GREAT.

SKILLET CHOPS
2 tablespoons butter
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
4 thick bone in pork chops
1/2 sweet onion, sliced thin
1 can great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup tomato sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons jalapeno ketchup

  • Melt butter in cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Saute onions 1-2 minutes
  • Generously season chops on both sides.
  • Add chops and quickly sear to a golden brown.
  • Whisk together the tomato sauce, brown sugar and jalapeno ketchup.
  • Fold beans into sauce.
  • Arrange beans around pork chops, cover and simmer on LOW 15-30 minutes until chops are cooked through.

OVEN BRAISED RAINBOW CARROTS
1 1/2 pounds rainbow carrots, cleaned and cut to like sizes
4 LARGE green onions, halved lengthwise
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/3 cup orange juice
3 tablespoons melted butter or avocado oil
1 medium shallot, FINELY chopped
1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper to taste

  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Whisk together the butter or oil, orange juice, vinegar, orange zest, shallots, FRESH ground salt and pepper.
  • Toss carrots, and green onions with orange juice mixture.
  • Pour into a large flat baking dish, cover with foil and bake 15 minutes.
  • Remove foil and bake another 30 minutes.

BACON BROWN SUGAR GARLIC CHICKEN

BACON BROWN SUGAR GARLIC CHICKEN

This is the PERFECT weeknight recipe! There are few ingredients that produce a sticky and crisp yet sweet garlicky taste for a quick meal.

2/3 cup PACKED brown sugar
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into large chunks
12 slices bacon
Chopped parsley, for garnish

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Lightly spray a deep dish baking dish with non-stick spray.
  • In a large bowl add the brown sugar, garlic, salt and pepper and mix until combined.
  • Coat the chicken in the brown sugar mixture, pressing to adhere.
  • Wrap each piece of chicken with two slices of bacon in such a way that the ends are under the chicken to prevent it from unwrapping while cooking. I put them on a bed of green beans, onions and sliced carrots to make a one pot dish.
  • Top with the remaining brown sugar mixture.
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes or until cooked through and browned with the bacon crisp.

NOTE: Be careful to not let the brown sugar burn or blacken.