ITALIAN DEVIL CHICKEN & TOMATO POTATO CASSEROLE

These two recipes go hand in hand for us.  The marinade on the chicken makes it sooooooooo tender and flavorful too. The tomato potato casserole is good, but add the sauce and it ALL comes together as GREAT & YUMMY! 😀

ITALIAN DEVIL CHICKEN & TOMATO POTATO CASSEROLE

ITALIAN DEVIL CHICKEN
1 pound Chicken tenders
2 ounces avocado oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 1 LARGE lemon
2 tablespoons Frank’s Original Hot Sauce
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
Wondra flour for dredging
1 tablespoon butter

  • Whisk together the avocado oil, lemon juice, garlic and hot sauce.
  • Season chicken tenders generously with FRESH ground salt and pepper.
  • Add chicken pieces to a shallow dish and pour marinade over top.
  • Cover and chill 4-8 hours or overnight.

 

  • Melt butter in skillet over medium heat.
  • Drain marinade off chicken pieces.
  • Dredge chicken pieces in flour and add to skillet.
  • Sear chicken pieces 2-3 minutes each side until golden and cooked through.
  • Remove chicken pieces and keep warm while preparing sauce.

SAUCE
4 ounces tomato pesto
1 cup Marsala wine

  • In the same skillet add wine being sure to scrape up all the browned bits.
  • Whisk in tomato pesto and simmer on medium high 5-6 minutes until heated through and slightly reduced.
  • Serve sauce over chicken pieces.

TOMATO POTATO CASSEROLE
potatoes, peeled and sliced thin
Italian Roma tomatoes, sliced thin
Vidalia onion, sliced thin
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
Parmesan Cheese, grated
FRESH basil leaves, torn, to taste
5-6 tablespoons Avocado oil
1/4 cup water

  • Spray baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Arrange potatoes in a layer, followed by a layer of onions and then a layer of tomatoes.
  • Sprinkle with basil leaves, to taste.
  • Season each layer to taste.
  • Repeat layers ending with the Parmesan cheese.
  • Sprinkle oil over cheese layer evenly.
  • Pour water over top.
  • Bake covered for 30 minutes.
  • Bake for another 30 minutes or until tender and cheese is golden.

DRUNKEN CHICKEN & TOMATOES

DRUNKEN CHICKEN & TOMATOES
1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons avocado oil
8 ounces beech mushrooms
2 -3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup Marsala wine
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon water
1 cup halved grape tomatoes
2 tablespoons FRESH chopped flat leaf Italian parsley, divided

  • Butterfly each chicken breast.
  • Cut chicken breasts into eight 1/2 inch pieces each of equal size.
  • Combine flour, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper in a large Ziploc bag.
  • Add chicken pieces and coat well with flour.
  • In a large skillet heat oil over medium high heat.
  • Shake excess flour from each piece and add chicken pieces to hot oil.
  • Saute’ chicken pieces about 3 minutes on each side until golden. Cook in batches if necessary DO NOT CROWD PAN.
  • Remove chicken pieces and set aside to drain.
  • Add mushrooms and garlic, cooking until garlic is fragrant and mushrooms are beginning to caramelize.
  • Add Marsala wine to pan, stirring often and cooking about 5 minutes until liquid is reduced by half.
  • Whisk together the water and cornstarch. Add to pan and stir until well blended.
  • Return chicken pieces to pan and top with tomato pieces and half the parsley.
  • Cook 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally until well coated and sauce begins to thicken.
  • Serve over mashed potatoes of prepared egg noodles.
  • Garnish with remaining parsley.

GREEN ONION TOMATO CHICKEN

GREEN ONION TOMATO CHICKEN – serves 4
4 whole chicken quarters, bone in and skin on are best
1 cup chopped green onions (1 LARGE bunch green onions)
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup avocado oil
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup small torn FRESH Flat Leaf Parsley

  • Generously salt and pepper both sides of chicken.
  • In a LARGE ziplock bag place chicken pieces, green onions, garlic, vinegar and oil.
  • Turn to coat chicken pieces well.
  • Seal Bag.
  • Marinate in refrigerator at least 8 hours or overnight.

 

  • Heat grill to low-medium.
  • Using a drip pan place chicken bone side down.
  • Grill covered 50-60 minutes until cooked through to 175°, turn once at about 35-40 minutes if necessary.

 

  • Place tomatoes in a single layer in a foil pan.
  • Drizzle tomatoes with lemon olive oil.
  • Sprinkle with FRESH ground salt and pepper.
  • Sprinkle with basil pieces.
  • Cover with foil and add to grill during last 15 minutes of chicken cooking time.

 

  • Serve over pasta or stuffing.
  • Top with chicken pieces, tomato and onions.

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TOMATO SWISS STEAK

I recently ran across a recipe for “Swiss Steak en Casserole” from an old 1958 booklet of recipes that was quite similar and it reminded me of this recipe I make primarily in the winter because of its “comfort” quality of rib sticking goodness, which means I haven’t made it in a few years since it hardly gets cold here.

I have NO idea why this is called Swiss Steak. I just know my mom called it that and so did her mom. Grams said it had something to do with how the meat is prepared, but don’t quote me on that! That conversation was eons ago. But, as I typed this my curiosity got the best of me so I looked it up.

According to Wikipedia, “Swiss steak is meat, usually beef, prepared by means of rolling or pounding, and then braising in a cooking pot of stewed tomatoes, mushroom sauce, or some other sauce, either on a stove / log (cooker) or in an oven. In England and in some parts of the United States such as the Deep South, it is also called smothered steak. The dish does not stem from Switzerland, as the name suggests, but from the technique of tenderizing by pounding or rolling called “swissing“. So that was clear as MUD 😀

Mom used to add sliced green peppers and I ALWAYS picked them out so I don’t bother to add them now. Green peppers and I are NOT friends – never have been, never will be especially now with no stomach tolerance. I do use quite a bit of FRESH ground tri-color peppercorns instead. I remember it sometimes being served with mashed potatoes, but I prefer the sliced potatoes cooked in the sauce. I cannot be sure of the original measurements or even the original ingredients as I have adjusted it over an over through the years to suit our tastes. I know the original recipe called for water, but I love using the buttermilk as it makes a thicker, more flavorful gravy.

I also remember a similar recipe using a brown style gravy with mushrooms that was using this same cut of meat like a faux stroganoff.

TOMATO SWISS STEAK

2 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 to 2 pounds of tenderized round steak
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon FRESH ground sea salt
1-2 teaspoons FRESH ground tri-color pepper
1 large shallot, sliced
1 can Campbell’s Tomato Bisque Soup
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 Yukon potatoes, sliced thin
1-2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1/2 cup chopped bell pepper (optional)

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Cut the round steak into 6 to 8 serving-size portions.
  • Add flour into a shallow bowl. Season well with salt and pepper.
  • Generously season each piece of meat on both sides.
  • Dredge each steak in flour mixture, pushing down to secure flour to meat.
  • Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Quickly brown each piece of meat and the remove it.
  • Add the shallot and bell pepper if you are using it, stirring to sauté for a few minutes, scrape up bits from bottom as you go. Scoot shallots and peppers to the edges of the pan.
  • Alternately layer potato slices in the middle of the shalllots.
  • Whisk together the tomato bisque and buttermilk.
  • Add meat pieces over top of the potatoes.
  • Pour tomato soup mixture over everything.
  • Cover and bake 40 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

NOTES:

  • Using the vinegar makes a tangier sauce – just depends on your mood. 😀
  • In the winter I like to make this with sliced carrots also which add some GREAT color.
  • I also sometimes make this with sliced baby red peppers instead of green peppers.

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CABBAGE ROLL SOUP

CABBAGE ROLL SOUP
1 1/2 pounds hamburger
1 cup cooked rice or uncooked pasta
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 large Vidalia onion, chopped
2 cups V-8 juice
8 ounces tomato sauce
2 cans original Rotel tomatoes with juice
+/- 8 ounces beef broth
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
FRESH ground salt and pepper, to taste
1 small head cabbage, chopped

  • In a large dutch oven, brown hamburger.
  • Drain hamburger in colander over a paper plate and paper toweling to catch grease.
  • Add onion and garlic to dutch oven, sautéing until soft and fragrant.
  • Add V-8, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes and broth, stirring to blend.
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Simmer over low heat 1-2 hours.
  • Add cabbage and simmer 1 hour more.
  • Add  pasta and simmer 20 minutes more until pasta is tender or add cooked rice and simmer 5 minutes until rice is heated through.

NOTE: If you like it thinner like soup, add more broth.

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PIQUANT CHICKEN with CHARRED TOMATO SAUCE

Chipotle chiles add a nice smoky heat to the sauce.  Serve this piquant chicken with lime wedges, chopped cilantro and chiles, and sour cream.


PIQUANT CHICKEN with CHARRED TOMATO SAUCE
3 pounds skinless chicken breast
1-1/2 cups oil
2 cans Chipolte Peppers in Adobo Sauce
1 (can) 16 ounce whole tomatoes, chopped
1 cup onions, chopped fine
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 large bunches green onions, chopped
1/4 cup chopped parsley
3 large cloves garlic, sliced thin
3 cups chicken broth
1 tablespoon red pepper
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons sea salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon oregano
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

  • Drain peppers, retaining sauce. Finely chop peppers and set aside.
  • In a heavy skillet, add 1/4 oil and heat until hot.
  • Add 1/2 cup flour and stir mixture until roux is a nice caramel color.  Set aside.
  • In a 4 quart heavy pot add 2 to 3 tablespoons of oil and adobo sauce.
  • Cook on low heat until brown in color.
  • Add onions, celery, garlic and stir until mixture is sauteed.
  • Add roux, a pepper or two depending on your heat index and whole tomatoes, while continuing to stir to keep mixture from sticking to bottom of pot.
  • Slowly add chicken broth while stirring to blend all ingredients together.
  • Add all seasonings, sugar and Worcestershire sauce.
  • Cook on medium heat for about 1 hour, stirring every 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Turn down heat, and add green onions and parsley.
  • Heat remaining oil until hot.
  • Slowly add chicken and pan-fry until slightly brown. Salt and peppering generously.
  • Drain on paper towels to remove excess oil.
  • Slowly add chicken to the sauce and cook for about 45 minutes.

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BOOZY CREAM TOMATO SOUP

Have you ever heard the funny story about cutting off the back of the ham? Zig Ziglar tells a story about a new bride who would always cut the end off the ham before baking it. Her husband asked why she did it and the wife responded that she did it because her mother always did it so that was the way it was supposed to be.

Well, her husband wasn’t happy with her “the way it’s supposed” to be answer and decided to ask his mother-in-law that same question. Her answer was the same making him more curious than ever.

The husband called his wife’s grandmother to see what her answer was. Grandma told him that she had a small oven and it was the only way the ham would fit inside.

This story always makes me laugh because grandma had an extremely legitimate reason for doing it, but daughter and granddaughter not so much. I personally like to push the boundaries and do not blindly follow without rhyme or reason, but I do stop and ask myself if there is a better way on many things.

Why  did I tell you this story? Because you’ll notice a pat of butter in the center of the soup bowl.  I did this out of habit because grams always did.  LOL I do believe it gives it a richer flavor as you eat though so will keep blindly following…

BOOZY TOMATO SOUP
2 tablespoons butter
3 medium carrots with tops**, chopped
1 medium sweet onion, chopped
3 LARGE cloves garlic, minced
1- 26 ounce box POMI finely chopped tomatoes
50 ml bottle QUALITY bourbon (3 1/2 tablespoons)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 cup chicken broth
Fresh ground Himalayan Pink and Black pepper, to taste

  • Melt butter in large saucepan over medium high heat.
  • Add carrots and onions, sautéing until soft.
  • Add garlic and carrot tops, continuing to saute’, but watching so garlic does NOT burn.
  • Stir in chicken broth, bourbon, brown sugar and tomatoes.
  • Bring to a SLOW boil, reduce heat, season with salt and pepper, cover and simmer for 30 minutes, occasionally stirring.
  • Stir in half and half, heating through.
  • Garnish with parsley and Parmesan crisps.

NOTE: **You can substitute flat leaf Italian Parsley for the carrot tops.

PARMESAN CRISPS
1/2 cup grated QUALITY Parmesan

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Pour a heaping tablespoon of Parmesan onto a silicone mat** lined baking sheet and lightly pat down.
  • Repeat with the remaining cheese, spacing the spoonfuls about a 1/2 inch apart.
  • Bake for 3 to 5 minutes or until golden and crisp.
  • Cool.

NOTE: **You can use parchment paper, but I have better success with silicone.