PAN SEARED CHICKEN with RUSTIC TOMATO GRAVY & FLUFFY BUTTERED MASHED POTATOES

I got this recipe from Jet Tila and have used it ever since to make the fluffiest, lightest and tastiest mashed potatoes.

PAN SEARED CHICKEN with RUSTIC TOMATO GRAVY & FLUFFY BUTTERED MASHED POTATOES

PAN SEARED CHICKEN with RUSTIC TOMATO GRAVY
3 to 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tablespoons avocado oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 bunch green onions, sliced THINLY
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tablespoons FRESH chopped thyme leaves
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
15 ounce can petite diced tomatoes, drained, but juice reserved
chicken stock
1 tablespoon chicken bouillon
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
3 tablespoons Mascarpone cheese

  • Rinse and pat dry the chicken breasts.
  • Add enough chicken stock to the reserved tomato juice to equal 1 3/4 cups. Whisk in chicken bouillon.
  • Heat oil in skillet over medium high heat.
  • Generously season chicken breasts with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Dredge chicken breasts in flour.
  • Sear chicken breast on each side 2-3 minutes per side.
  • Remove chicken from pan and keep warm.
  • Add onions and garlic, sauteing 2-3 minutes.
  • Add tomatoes and thyme leaves, simmering 10 minutes until tomatoes are cooked through.
  • Stir in Mascarpone cheese until creamy.
  • Add chicken breasts to sauce, turning to coat.
  • Serve over fluffy mashed potatoes.

FLUFFY BUTTERED MASHED POTATOES
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 pounds SMALL Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into half (2 inch pieces)
1/2 cup half and half
1 1/2 tablespoons FRESH grated sea salt
1 teaspoon FRESH ground sea salt

  • Add potato pieces into a large saucepan and cover by 1 inch with COLD* (see notes) water.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of sea salt.
  • Bring to a boil over HIGH heat.
  • Reduce heat to MEDIUM heat and simmer for 15-18 minutes until potatoes are fork tender.
  • Drain the potatoes well in a colander and then return to the pan over LOW heat.
  • Warm the half and half in the microwave for 45 seconds.
  • Rice or mash potatoes with a masher until lumps are gone.
  • Fold in half and half with a rubber spatula.
  • Add butter 1 piece at a time, folding it gently into the potato mixture.
  • Season to taste with remaining salt and pepper.

NOTES:

  • Using the COLD water makes the starches in the potatoes cook slower and more evenly so that the outsides are not more done when the centers are ready and they become creamier.
  • Give your potatoes a kick with a bit of roasted garlic, chives or even some wasabi for some variety.

ASIAN CHICKEN CHOPPED SALAD

ASIAN CHICKEN CHOPPED SALAD

2 chicken breasts

MARINADE
2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
½ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 clove garlic, sliced
1 tablespoon ginger, chopped

  • In a large bowl, combine marinade ingredients.
  • Add chicken into the bowl, coat the chicken, and marinate for 30 minutes in the fridge.
  • Fully cook chicken and cut into cubes.

VINAIGRETTE
¼ cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon grated ginger

  • In a mason jar, combine ingredients for the dressing.
  • Shake and set aside.

SALAD
2 romaine lettuce, chopped
1 cup red cabbage
½ cup carrots, grated
¼ cup green onions, chopped
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
¼ cup almond slices
¼ cup fried wonton chips

  • Add all of the salad ingredients into a large bowl and add the cubed chicken and dressing.
  • Toss and enjoy!

NOTES: Get creative and add in ANYTHING you’d like; tomatoes,diced celery, red onions, hard boiled eggs, mandarin oranges…

NOT YOUR GRANDMOTHER’S CHICKEN PARMESAN

The key to this recipe is using chicken thighs instead of breasts. The flattened thighs are much more juicy and tender.

NOT YOUR GRANDMOTHER’S CHICKEN PARMESAN
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon Garden Gourmet Italian Herbs
4 LARGE chicken thighs, flattened to less than 1/2 inch
1/2 cup WONDRA flour
3 eggs, beaten
2 cups Panko crumbs
Avocado oil, for frying
4 cups of your favorite red sauce
1 cup FINELY grated Parmesan cheese
8 ounces QUALITY Mozzarella cheese, sliced

  • Preheat oven to 375°.
  • Whisk together the eggs and Italian herbs.
  • Set up a dredging station with the flour, beaten eggs and Panko crumbs in separate shallow dishes.
  • Generously season chicken thighs with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Heat LARGE, DEEP skillet with oil over medium-high heat to 375°.
  • Dredge each chicken thigh in flour, then egg, followed by Panko crumbs.
  • Add chicken thighs to skillet and brown 2-4 minutes per side until golden.
  • Transfer to paper toweling to drain of excess oil.

 

  • Spread most of the tomato sauce on bottom of 9×13 baking pan.
  • Sprinkle one third of the Parmesan cheese over sauce.
  • Layer chicken cutlets in a single layer over sauce.
  • Top with mozzarella cheese pieces.
  • Dot with remaining sauce.
  • Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan.
  • Bake 15 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is golden.

PAPRIKA CHICKEN IN LEMON SAUCE with PISTACHIO RICE for 2

PAPRIKA CHICKEN IN LEMON SAUCE with PISTACHIO RICE for 2

2 tablespoons FRESH chopped Thyme
½ cup Basmati Rice
1 teaspoon paprika
2 tablespoon sour cream
2 large green onions, thinly sliced, whites and greens separated
1 LARGE lemon, juiced
3/4 pound chicken steaks
1/4 cup chicken stock
1/4 cup crushed Pistachios
2 teaspoon avocado oil
2 tablespoon butter
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Adjust rack to top position and preheat oven to 425°.
  • Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a small pot over medium-high heat.
  • Add scallion whites; cook, stirring occasionally, until just softened, 1 minute.
  • Stir in rice, ¾ cup water, and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce to a low simmer. Cook until rice is tender, 15-18 minutes. Remove from heat and keep covered until ready to serve.

 

  • While rice cooks, pat chicken dry and season all over with paprika, salt, and pepper.
  • Heat a drizzle of avocado oil in a large pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add chicken and cook until browned and cooked through, 3-5 min per side.
  • Transfer to a plate.
  • Wipe out pan. If you forget to do this or choose not to, your sauce will take on a red hue 😀
  • Melt 1 tablespoon butter in the same pan over medium heat.
  • Add chopped thyme; cook until fragrant, 30 seconds.
  • Stir in stock and bring to a simmer, then immediately turn off heat.
  • Stir in sour cream and lemon juice.
  • Season to taste with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Fluff rice with a fork; stir in lemon zest and pistachios.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Divide rice and chicken between plates.
  • Top chicken with sauce and sprinkle with scallion greens.

SWEET & SMOKEY PORK TENDERLOIN with CHERRY SAUCE and APPLE CARROT SLAW

SWEET & SMOKEY PORK TENDERLOIN with CHERRY SAUCE and APPLE CARROT SLAW

PORK
3/4 pound pork tenderloin
2 tablespoons butter
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon of Smokey Cinnamon Spice rub

  • Adjust rack to middle position and preheat oven to 450°.
  • Rub pork with a large drizzle of oil.
  • Season generously all over with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Reserve ¼ teaspoon of the spice rub in a small microwave-safe bowl for later.
  • Rub pork all over with remaining spice.
  • Place pork on a baking sheet and roast on middle rack until cooked through, 18-20 minutes.
  • Let rest 5 minutes after removing from oven.
  • Let rest 5 minutes under aluminum foil.

SLAW
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
scant 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup shredded carrots
1 apple, cored and thinly sliced
2-3 green onions, sliced thin
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • In a medium bowl, combine mayonnaise, vinegar and sugar.
  • Add carrots and toss to coat.
  • Set aside to marinate 10 minutes.
  • Add apples and toss to coat.
  • Add onions and season with FRESH ground sea salt and pepper to taste.

SAUCE
reserved spice rub
1/2 teaspoon champagne vinegar
4 tablespoons cherry jam** (see notes)
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon butter

  • To the bowl with the reserved spice add the jam and remaining vinegar; stirring to combine.
  • Microwave until warm, 30-45 seconds.
  • Stir in butter until melted.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Blend in sour cream.

SMOKEY CINNAMON SPICE RUB
1/2 teaspoon QUALITY cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons sugar

  • Whisk together.

ASSEMBLY

  • After pork is rested, slice pork crosswise.
  • Drizzle sauce over pork and serve.

NOTES: Jam can be any flavor that goes with pork. I happened to have apricot in the refrigerator tonight when I made this so color is off a bit from a cherry red. 😀

PAN SEARED LEMON APRICOT CHICKEN

PAN SEARED LEMON APRICOT CHICKEN
LEMON APRICOT CHICKEN

3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tablespoons FRESH parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup apricot preserves
3/4 cup chicken stock
1 LARGE lemon
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons avocado oil
FRESH ground sea salt & ground pepper
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon butter

  • Preheat oven to 450°F with a rack in the top position.

  • Pat chicken dry, then pound to an even ½-inch thickness.
  • Season all over with FRESH ground sea salt & ground pepper.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a medium skillet over medium-high.
  • Add chicken and cook until browned and cooked through, 3–4 minutes per side.
  • Transfer chicken to a plate.
  • 
Add shallots to same skillet; reduce heat to medium. Cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes.
  • Add chicken stock, apricot preserves, ¾ of the parsley and the vinegar. Simmer, scraping brown bits from the bottom of the skillet, until sauce reduces to ½ cup, 5–7 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, then whisk in butter.

  • Add chicken and any resting juices back to the skillet. Cook over medium, turning chicken once, until warm and coated in sauce, 1–2 minutes.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Season to taste with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Garnish with remaining parsley. Enjoy!

SWORDFISH with LEMON PEPPER BASTING SAUCE

GRILLED SWORDFISH with LEMON BASTING SAUCE
4 tablespoons butter, room temperature
2 teaspoons FRESH chopped fresh parsley
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground mixed peppercorns, plus more for sprinkling
1/2 teaspoon (packed) grated lemon peel
1 tablespoon avocado oil
4 1-inch-thick swordfish fillets (about 6 ounces each)

  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Mash butter, parsley, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon ground mixed peppercorns, and lemon peel in small bowl. Season to taste with salt.
  • Heat butter in heavy large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Sprinkle swordfish with salt and ground mixed peppercorns.
  • Add swordfish to skillet, cooking until browned, about 3 minutes.
  • Turn swordfish over and transfer to oven.
  • Roast until just cooked through, about 10 minutes longer.
  • Transfer swordfish to plates.
  • Top with Lemon Sauce

LEMON SAUCE
1/3 cup butter
2 green onions, finely minced
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
a pinch of cayenne pepper
1/4 cup FRESH squeezed lemon juice
Zest of one LARGE lemon
1/4 cup hot water
a couple drops Tabasco

  • In a small saucepan, melt the butter.
  • Add green onions and sauce a few minutes.
  • Whisk in the paprika, sugar, salt, pepper and cayenne.
  • When well blended add lemon juice, hot water and Tabasco.
  • Add lemon zest just before serving.

FENNEL CRUSTED PORK MEDALLIONS with ROASTED POTATOES and LEMON MINT GRAVY

FENNEL CRUSTED PORK MEDALLIONS with ROASTED POTATOES and LEMON MINT GRAVY

Fennel-Crusted Pork Medallions with Roasted Potatoes & Green Beans
Fennel seeds are an aromatic spice, used in savory (and sometimes sweet!) preparations. The seed comes from the fennel plant, a flowering vegetable plant that is part of the carrot family. Here, we use these seeds to make juicy fennel-crusted pork medallions served alongside roasted potatoes and crisp green beans for comfort food at its best.

adapted from Jennie Perillo at Marley Spoon

3/4 cup chicken stock
3/4 pound pork tenderloins
1 lemon, zested and juiced
2 tablespoons FRESH chopped mint
1/2 pound green beans
2 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Yukon gold potatoes
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
1+ 1 + 1 tablespoon avocado oil
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 + 1 tablespoons butter

  • Preheat oven to 450°.
  • Arrange rack in lower half of the oven.
  • Cover sheet pan in foil for easy clean up.
  • Scrub potatoes, then cut into even sized wedges.
  • Toss potatoes with 1 tablespoon avocasdo oil and season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Roast 12 minutes until potatoes are golden.
  • While potatoes are roasting clean wash, trim and cut green beans.
  • Toss beans with 1 teaspoon avocado oil, lemon zest, 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice, half of the minced garlic, FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Flip potatoes and add green beans to baking sheet along with the potatoes. Roast for another 10 minutes.

  • Cut pork tenderloin into 4 equal sized pieces and flatten with a meat mallet to about 1/4 inch thickness.
  • Generously season pork tenderloins with FRESH ground sea salt, black pepper and the crushed fennel seeds.
  • While vegetables are roasting, heat 1 tablespoon of avocado oil and 1 tablespoon of butter over medium high heat in large skillet.
  • Add pork to hot skillet and sear for 2 minutes on each side.
  • Return pork tenderloins to cutting board and cover with foil to rest while you prepare the gravy.
  • Sprinkle pan with flour and whisk to blend.
  • Add chicken stock, remaining garlic and remaining lemon juice to skillet, simmering to slightly thicken.
Whisk in remaining mint and 1 tablespoon butter.
  • Bring to a simmer and cook until sauce reduces slightly, about 2 minutes.
  • Season to taste and serve immediately.

 

SLOW COOKED SOY CHILE PORK CHOPS

SLOW COOKED SOY CHILE PORK CHOPS

1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup SIR KENSINGTON ketchup*
1/4 cup Bragg’s liquid aminos
1-3 tablespoon red chile paste (I used Gourmet Garden)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
3 pounds boneless thick cut (1-1 1/2 inches) pork chops
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup water

  • Add brown sugar, ketchup, liquid aminos, chile paste, garlic, salt and pepper (except pork chops and corn starch) in a 6-quart slow cooker.
  • Stir to combine.
  • Add pork chops, tossing to coat with the sauce.
  • Cook on low 3-4 hours.
  • Combine equal amounts cornstarch and water in a mason jar. Close the lid, to seal the jar. Shake until well blended and then shake again to create a slurry.
  • Add the slurry to the slow cooker.
  • Stir and cover, cook 1 more hour.
  • Check for doneness. If the pork chops need longer let them cook until tender and done.

NOTES:

  • SIR KENSINGTON Ketchup is a much lower sugar ketchup that is a cross between a regular ketchup and cocktail sauce – more of a kick 😀
  • Add chili paste according to your desired heat level. If you prefer it more mild add less, or omit it altogether.
  • Cook times DO vary based on your slow cooker and the thickness of your pork chops. You can also substitute thinner chops or chicken breasts, but you need to seriously alter your cooking times.

CHICKEN & APPLES ~ PURE COMFORT FOOD

This recipe is adapted from Eliza Winograd Marley Spoon and provides a hearty and complete comfort meal with rustic mashed potatoes, flavorful chicken with its sweet and tart apple with a creamy sauce and crisp tart salad as a companion. The recipe as written didn’t have enough OOOMPH for us (it was actually quite bland), so I OOOMPED it up a bit 😀

CHICKEN & APPLES over Mashed Potatoes with Spinach Salad

SALAD & DRESSING
2  cups torn baby spinach
1 1/2 tablespoons avocado oil
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon FINELY diced shallot
1 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced into 1/4 inch cubes
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, toasted if desired

  • In a medium bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons oil, 2 tablespoons vinegar and 1 tablespoon of the chopped shallots.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Set aside.
  • Just before serving, toss spinach leaves and chopped apple, nuts and dressing.

POTATOES
1/4-1/3 cup sour cream
2 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and large diced
2 tablespoons butter
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Place potatoes in a small saucepan with 1 teaspoon salt along with enough water to cover by 1-inch.
  • Bring to a boil, then simmer until tender, about 15 minutes.
  • Drain, return to pot, add 2 tablespoons butter and keep covered. 


CHICKEN
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (see note)
2 teaspoons BETTER THAN chicken concentrate
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 teaspoon salt + FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
3/4 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenders
1 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced into 1/4 inch cubes
1 shallot, FINELY chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon avocado oil
1 + 1 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
1 cup water

  • Pat chicken dry and generously season all over with a mixture of the onion powder and FRESH ground sea salt and pepper.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a medium skillet over medium-high.
  • Add chicken until well browned on both sides but not cooked completely through, 2–3 minutes per side.  Transfer chicken to a plate and keep warm.
  • Melt 1 tablespoon butter in reserved skillet over medium-high.
  • Add apples, garlic and the remaining shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until well browned and slightly softened, 3–5 minutes.
  • Sprinkle flour over skillet and cook 30 seconds.
  • Whisk together water, chicken concentrate and Dijon mustard. Add to skillet, gently stirring and scraping up any browned bits from the bottom.
  • Return chicken to pan, simmering 5-7 minutes until chicken is cooked through, apples are tender and sauce has thickened.

  • Return saucepan with potatoes to medium-high and add sour cream and 2 tablespoons butter. Coarsely mash using a fork or potato masher.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Serve chicken with apples and sauce spooned over top with mashed potatoes and salad alongside.

NOTE: I substitute a creamy horseradish for the Dijon due to an allergy that works well for me, but the flavor base is up to you 😀

SPICY HONEY RIBS

SPICY HONEY RIBS
3 pounds baby back ribs
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1 cup honey
1/4 cup Bragg’s liquid aminos
1/4 cup Dijon mustard (optional – see notes)
5 tablespoons Sriracha sauce
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 limes, juiced

  • Preheat oven to 325°.
  • Remove the membrane from the back side of the ribs.
  • Generously season ribs all over with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Wrap each rack of ribs in heavy duty aluminum foil.
  • Place on rimmed baking sheet and bake 2 1/2-3 hours until meat is tender.
  • While ribs are cooking whisk together the remaining ingredients in a small saucepan.
  • Bring to a SLOW boil.
  • Reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes until sauce is reduced by half.
  • When you remove the ribs from the oven, move the oven rack to the top and rack 6-8 inches from the broiler.
  • Preheat oven to broil.
  • Open foil and place ribs bone side down.
  • Generously brush ribs with sauce.
  • Broil 3 minutes.
  • Generously brush ribs again with sauce.
  • Broil 2-3 minutes more.
  • Serve with remaining sauce.

NOTES: I’m deathly allergic to mustard so I substitute Jalapeno ketchup for the mustard and omit the Sriracha sauce.

ROSEMARY THYME BUTTER SAUCE CHICKEN

ROSEMARY THYME BUTTER SAUCE CHICKEN
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenders equivalent
1 + 1 + 1 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup white wine or chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon FRESH minced rosemary
1 tablespoon FRESH thyme leaves
3/4 cup diced sweet onions
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup SMALL diced carrots
1 cup SMALL diced YUKON potatoes (turnips make a great substitution)

  • Melt 1 tablespoon butter in skillet over medium heat.
  • Sear chicken 2-3 minutes per side until cooked through.
  • Transfer to plate and keep warm.
  • Add another tablespoon of butter to pan.
  • When melted add in onions, carrots and potatoes.
  • Season with FRESH ground salt and pepper, stirring and cooking 5-7 minutes until softened.
  • Add wine to the skillet, scraping bottom to loosen the seared bits.
  • Add cream and bring to SLOW, LOW boil.
  • Reduce heat and cook until sauce slightly thickens.
  • Add in rosemary and stir to coat.
  • Add in remaining better, stirring until smooth.