Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Chicken’ Category

After work today I came home for Memorial Day weekend to spend time with my family. I was so thankful for this break because between graduation and the start of my internship I haven’t had time to relax and unwind. It will be a weekend filled with good food and even better company; my favorite way to spend down time.

Since I was going away for the weekend, I needed to clean out my produce closet. I hate letting food go to waste and had an ample supply of produce in my refrigerator, therefore; lunch today was a simple salad with a tuna topper, Dr. Krackers and strawberries. My salad was composed of 1 romaine heart, 1/4 red bell pepper, 1-2 inches of cucumber, alfalfa sprouts and a handful of grape tomatoes. I prepared a package of tuna with balsamic, Dijon mustard, 1 stalk of celery and chopped kalamata olives. On the side I had a serving of Dr. Krackers and the remainder of my fresh strawberries.

After a long day of work, I made a 1.5 hour drive home and was greeted with a Middle Ages IPA beer. I love this beer, it has an incredible “hoppy” flavor and rich mouth-feel. For dinner my parents prepared grilled chicken, corn on the cob and a mixed green salad with cucumbers, tomatoes and blue cheese paired with  Charles Krug Sauvignon Blanc. This meal was the epitome of summer: simple, crisp and fresh. Some of my favorite childhood Summer memories revolve around grilled foods and soft serve ice cream.

Dessert is ALWAYS necessary, so as a ‘thank you’ for the thoughtful dinner my parents prepared, I teamed up with my good friend Betty Crocker and baked a batch of brownies. My mom added peanut butter cup sundae ice cream, chocolate syrup, whipped cream and a cherry for brownies a la mode. Did I mention that I LOVE coming home? I had such a nice evening catching up with my parents.

Family Gal,

Nora

What are your favorite family memories?

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Dinner last night was simple and satisfying. For some reason warm weather always makes me crave grilled items and fresh produce. I marinated a chicken breast in barbecue sauce and grilled it on my cast iron skillet. I wish I had access to a real grill but my make shift grill pan over an open flame is the next best thing! My chicken was perfectly moist and delicious. On the side I had a rather big salad of mixed greens, alfalfa sprouts, button mushrooms, garbanzo beans, red bell pepper, grape tomatoes and feta cheese. I dressed this salad in a homemade mixture of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard and cracked black pepper. This dressing was so good that it caused an epiphany: If you have the time, MAKE YOUR OWN SALAD DRESSING! My dressing was the simple and the perfect consistency, really highlighting the crisp vegetables.

Once again, I had strawberries on my mind for dessert. I found a Jell-O pudding in the back of my fridge that I’m pretty sure was expired (gross, I know) but it looked okay so I decided to eat it anyways. I topped it with strawberries and whipped cream. NOTE TO SELF: BUY ICE CREAM ASAP!

I woke up this morning with an odd craving for cold cereal. I assembled a bowl of 1/2 cup Go Lean Crunch, 1/2 Cup Heart to Heart, 1 sliced banana, sliced strawberries, 1 TBS ground flax, cinnamon and 1 cup vanilla soy milk.
It was my first day at my internship so I was rather excited this morning. I debated bringing lunch because of my financial situation, however; because it was my first day I wanted to scope out the scene and try the cafeteria. I had a turkey, lettuce, red pepper and mayo sandwich on a whole wheat pita, a side salad with raspberry vinaigrette and an apple. It was pretty good and only set me back about $4 but I’ll probably pack a lunch from now on. It was another intern’s last day with the company and the department had a send-off for him after lunch. I was really excited because it was complete with CAKE! I had a small piece of dense yellow cake with white frosting (I made sure to get an edge piece for the extra frosting 🙂 )

After work I went to the gym. I knew that I wouldn’t be getting home for dinner until about 7pm, so I planned a head and packed a pre-gym snack and an easy dinner. I had a Tropical Fruit Tart Larabar around 4pm. It was such a nice treat for a hot summer afternoon and fueled my workout. I did about 40 minutes on the precor machine followed by crunches and arm weights. I always thought that I preferred morning workouts, but I really liked how it broke up my day. It was relaxing, and having dinner already prepared was KEY!

When I got home dinner was waiting for me. Last night I realized that I had a portabello mushroom cap to use so I created a stuffed portabello mushroom with couscous, spinach and feta cheese topped with grape tomatoes and more feta as the main component of my meal (I’m planning on some simple sides to accompany this dish but took this picture last night.). To prepare, I cleaned the exterior of the mushroom with a dry cloth (aka paper towel), discarded the stem and gills of the mushroom and brushed the outside with a mixture of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, dried basil and cracked black pepper. I then placed the mushroom cap side down on my cast iron grill pan, added the remaining vinaigrette mixture evenly into the belly, grilled it until tender and let it rest on a plate before adding the filling.

For the couscous, I placed 1/4 cup dry whole-wheat couscous in a bowl, added 1/2 cup of boiling water and let it sit about 5 minutes before fluffing and allowing it to cool. I added a handful of freshly chopped baby spinach, about 2 heaping TBS feta cheese and cracked black pepper into the couscous and mixed to combine. I placed this mixture in the mushroom cap and finished it with grape tomatoes and more feta cheese.

My internship is absolutely amazing! I feel so lucky to have found a position in the food industry incorporating aspects of social media and marketing. I am extremely passionate about food, family, healthy living and social media (obviously!) and can’t believe that I was able to find an involved internship composed of all these elements and more. I don’t want to go into details but today I was able to learn about and work on projects that dealt with iPhone apps, Twitter and blogging. Seriously, someone pinch me!

Working Girl,

Nora

What tips do you have for balancing work, exercising and healthy eating?

Read Full Post »

Lack of internet + no time= my demise. Although I have been completely disconnected for the past few days, I did not forget about my dear blog. My internet is not going to be installed until Wednesday, so I am EXTREMELY grateful right now for free Wi-Fi at coffee shops….I’m also extremely grateful for my parents. They have been my “knights in shining armor” through the insanity of the past week. I can’t believe how much has happened in such a short period of time. To recap:

  1. I graduated college on Sunday May 16.
  2. Immediately after my diploma ceremony I went on a packing rampage and shoved the contents of my college apartment into trash bags and boxes as quickly as possible.
  3. My parents helped me move all of my crazily packed belongings into my apartment and I headed home for a few days.
  4. Early Tuesday morning I left home to get started on apartment unpacking.
  5. Wednesday-Thursday my parents returned to help me clean/unpack/organize my apartment. All day Wednesday was spent cleaning. I had work at the bakery on Thursday and my parents stayed to complete the apartment transformation without me! I came back after work to a beautiful, organized and clean home. I’m not sure what I would have done without them because they completely transformed my hole-in-the-wall into a cozy abode.

When I got back from the bakery Thursday night my body was screaming “GIVE ME VEGGIES! GIVE ME VEGGIES!” The past few days haven’t exactly been produce heavy, and I was dying for some clean eats! It was nearly 8:30pm when I got back to my apartment, so I complied a salad in my new PERFECT SALAD BOWL (This bowl is is deep and has high sides so the contents of my typically gigantic salads mix well and do not fly all over. I’ve always used plates for my salad constructions and they can be messy. I’m very excited about this purchase. Thanks Mom and Dad!) with about 2 cups of mixed greens, 1/2 head of romaine, 1/4 cup garbanzo beans, handful of alfalfa sprouts, 1 stalk of celery, 1/3 of a large cucumber, 3 big and beautiful strawberries, 1/2 of a navel orange, 1/3 block of 5 grain tempeh and feta cheese topped with balsamic. This beautiful large salad was enjoyed on the floor of my new living room while watching Julie and Julia on my tiny TV. After dinner I enjoyed an ice cream sandwich for something sweet and cool.

Previous Eats:

On Monday I ate the contents of my parents fridge which includes but is not limited to the following:

Later that night I shared crackers, cheese and a martini with my dad before dinner. My mom prepared a fantastic grilled chicken breast, blue cheese wedge salad with a tarragon vinaigrette and herbed basmati rice. We enjoyed this meal with a cool and crisp Simi Chardonnay.

With a little help from my friends Betty Crocker and butter, I assembled Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies (extra chocolate chips added) for dessert. I had four of these while watching TV with my parents. It was the perfect way to relax before returning to my cluttered apartment.

Running out the door on Tuesday morning I grabbed a Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Luna Protein Bar (as if I didn’t get my cookie fix the night before) and headed back. When I got to my apartment I snacked on almonds and dried apricots before assembling my first apartment meal. For lunch I made a simple salad with a slice of leftover pizza. I had an apple and dark chocolate shortly after.

Dinner was a complete disgrace so pictures were not taken. I had a meeting from 5-9 so I decided to fill up with granola, cereal, museli, a frozen banana, vanilla soy milk, and Greek Yogurt. A few bowls later and I was  extraordinarily stuffed. When I got to the meeting the smell of pizza filled the air. The temptation was too much and I had a slice of cheese and a slice of pepperoni. After the meeting I had a dark chocolate almond and a dark chocolate cashew cluster before calling it a night.

Wednesday morning I had an 8am class to learn how to use my new MacBook. I wanted oatmeal for breakfast, but it was out of the question. The gas for my oven was not turned on and my microwave aka the number one cooking device used during my freshman-junior years of college remained in storage at my house. I made a portable breakfast for the drive:

This monster was composed of 1 large frozen banana, 2 large handfuls of spinach, 1/2 scoop chocolate whey protein, 1 scoop GREEN Superfood, cinnamon, 1 cup vanilla soy milk, 1 TBS crunchy PB and 5 ice cubes.

After the appointment I went to Starbucks for a Grande Soy Misto and a KIND Cashew and Almond Bar.

I had a late lunch and my parents finally arrived, ready to get down to apartment furnishing business. I have the world’s greatest parents, I can’t believe how much they have helped me with over the past two days. I’m pretty sure that if I did not have their assistance I would have just lived in a dirty, half-unpacked apartment for the next three months. It was a long day of cleaning that ended in Dinosaur BBQ for dinner. I started with a Middle Ages IPA beer and for my meal I had a chicken platter with BBQ chicken breast and wing, baked beans (so tasty and cooked with pulled pork!), corn bread, and a marinated cucumber and tomato salad. You better believe I demolished the entire plate!

This overdue entry is a bit lengthy, so I’m going to stop here. I have been reflecting over the past few days and have some thoughts for my blog that I want to share. I’m also exceptionally excited about my internship that starts MONDAY! I’ll be back later today (if I have the opportunity to obtain internet!) so stay tuned for more trials and tribulations.

Growing Up,

Nora

Read Full Post »

Appetizer

1st course

Main

Dessert (what was left of it when I remembered to snag a picture)

The boys did a GREAT job with dinner last night. They slaved over this meal all day, and all we had to do was show up! How lucky are we? When we arrived we were welcomed into their main foyer with cheese and crackers. After mingling for a while we were directed downstairs, where they had a long table set up with the “proper” plate and utensil arrangements and dinner was served….on paper plates with plastic forks and knives. Let me tell you it was SO difficult to cut that chicken in a graceful manner. It was such a thick piece of meat, I almost broke my knife and my fork pierced through my plate. So much for etiquette, but I think I probably ruined that when I took my phone out for pictures :). I didn’t really learn much about proper dining but it was fun to meet new people!

For an appetizer they had shrimp cocktail. There were a few plates like this on the table to share along with cocktail sauce. We were then given a first course of Caesar salad. The salad was extremely petite and a bit over dressed. I was having so much fun talking to my “date” that I only ended up having a few bites of this before the main course was served. For our main course we had chicken Marsala, roasted potatoes and steamed asparagus. This was the real selling point and “effort” of the meal and it was AMAZING. It was a huge piece of chicken but  well-cooked, and the potatoes were so flavorful. For dessert we were all given full pieces of strawberry cheesecake. I forgot to take a picture so this is only my last bite’s worth of dessert. Needless to say I was excited about cheesecake and devoured the entire thing. I was a classy date.

For breakfast today I was inches away from making a green monster and granola bowl but decided that blender clean up was not worth it. I went back to something I haven’t had in a while: Kashi Go Lean Crunch, Soy Milk, Banana, Berries, Flax and Cinnamon. I use to eat this almost every day, especially in the summer months. You know what? It wasn’t as good as I remember it being, I’m disappointed in my breakfast choice today (hate that feeling!). I also had a big Fuji apple on the side, which I think made my stomach a bit upset! I’m having a rough start to my day.

I’m off to work, and couldn’t be happier because it is a rainy day. The bakery should be pretty busy this afternoon, and I can’t wait to have a little change of pace from school. I only have a week and a half left and I’m so excited to finally be finished.

Fine Dining,

Nora

What do you eat when you can’t decide what you are in the mood for? (For any meal/snack.)

Read Full Post »

After a long night with friends I did something I haven’t done in a while: slept in and took breakfast on the go. I slept until 9am and have a class that starts at 10am so I grabbed a cup of coffee, a Jonagold Apple and a Kardea Cranberry Almond Bar and headed out the door.This bar was amazing! This was my last Kardea bar to blog about and I am happy to say I loved it. I keep comparing the texture of these bars to that of oatmeal cookie dough, and the Cranberry Almond flavor really hit home. There were large pieces of cranberry tucked into the bar with bits of almond and BIG almond flavor. It reminded me of my favorite oat cookie that my mom makes with dark chocolate, walnuts and dried cherries. Yes, those are different ingredients but it had such a “home cooked” feel to it!

Lunch was a bit rushed and consisted of a green monster, granola, almonds, veggies and almond butter. I ran 3 miles after my morning class, and needed a quick source of protein, carbohydrates, calories and fat. I didn’t have much time before my afternoon class so into the blender went: 1 medium frozen banana, 1/4 cup frozen raspberries, 1 scoop Chocolate Whey Protein, 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk,  1/2 cup vanilla soy milk, 3 ice cubes and 2 handfuls of spinach. I topped my monster bowl with ~1/4 cup Galaxy Vanilla Almond Granola (almost out of this 😦 )  and a small handful of whole raw almonds.

For some reason I was craving the warm almond butter, pumpkin butter and cinnamon topping that I had on toast the other day so I decided to experiment with another Jonagold. I sliced the big apple up (barely fits on that plate!), sprinkled it with cinnamon, drizzled my almond and pumpkin butter and heated it for 45 seconds in the microwave. Messy but DELICIOUS! I may or may not have found almond butter all over my keyboard later in the day. I’m addicted what can I say?

Later this afternoon I had work at the bakery! Before heading out I whipped up some fresh juice and dinner. This juice combination was a bit random: grapefruit, beet, celery, carrot, cucumber, parsley and kale. I’m not sure that I liked the sweet beet with the tart grapefruit but it wasn’t half bad for a throw together juice! Dinner was an homage to my mom: Chicken Salad. My mom makes the BEST chicken salad. I live for the day we have leftover chicken breast because it is THAT good. I switched mine up a bit and used Greek yogurt, lemon and thyme instead of mayonnaise. It was pretty good, but missing something (mom fill me in!). Chicken Salad: 1 chicken breast, 2 small celery stalks, handful of green grapes , 1 TBS walnuts, 1 TBS dried cherries, heap of Greek yogurt, lemon juice and chopped thyme. I loaded it onto a bed of arugula with a few Roma tomatoes. I brought this to work in a Chinese food container and enjoyed it with a slice of sourdough bread on the side. If I could manage to fit ALL of that into a sandwich I would be a magician, the bread was better on the side! I found a small apple in the break room that was calling my name so I had that before heading back to work. Yes, that makes 3 apples in 1 day.

When I finally got home and had time to relax, I crawled into my freezer candy stash and had a few Frozen Reese’s Mini Peanut Butter Cups. It was the perfect sweet treat to end my busy bee day.

When I am constantly running around all day, it can be hard to find time to eat right. I hate feeling rushed but with a few “quick-fix” meal and snack options I made it work. I think it is SO important to have go-to meals and snacks. This way you are left satisfied and have great food to fuel a busy day. I find too often as a college student that many of my friends “can’t find the time to eat” because they are so overwhelmed with work. They end up skipping meals and then unhealthfully snack and eat a lot later in the day to compensate. Personally, I can’t focus if I’m hungry but to maintain balance and energy it is essential to have some sort of plan. You will be happy, healthy and most importantly PRODUCTIVE!

I’m off to finish some work and then hitting the sack! Hopefully tomorrow will be a return to normalcy.

Busy Bee,

Nora

When you have a busy day do you plan what you are eating, or do you just go with the flow?

Read Full Post »

I wake up every morning EXCITED for breakfast. If I have been “dreaming” up a new combination or dish it is even more motivation to get out of bed. I haven’t had the time to make stove-top oatmeal in days, and knew this Saturday morning was the perfect opportunity to get back at it! I don’t know if it was because I had more time today, or if my “oatmeal form” is just improving from practice, but I have to say this bowl was simply divine. You can even see tender pieces of banana in the base! I knew I wanted blackberries and almond butter because I haven’t had them in a few days, and lets jut face it, a day without almond butter is a sad day for me. I had some frozen cherries on hand and dreamt up a big bowl of Cherry-Berry Oats.

Oats: 1/4 cup oat bran, 2 TBS rolled oats, 1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk, 1/3 cup water, 1/2 large sliced banana, vanilla extract, cinnamon, 1/2 TBS chia seeds.

Toppings: sautéed Sweet Cherries (I heated frozen cherries in a small sauce pan with orange juice…AMAZING), Chobani Greek Yogurt, Blackberries and 1TBS crunchy almond butter.

The 40 degree weather has channeled me to make foods of summer. This breakfast reminded me of cherry pie and last night I made Barbeque Chicken and Sweet Potato Fries with a Greek Side Salad. I can’t even tell you the last time I had BBQ, but for some reason I was really craving it for dinner. I marinated a chicken breast in some Memphis Style BBQ sauce and grilled the chicken on a cast iron grill pan about 7 minutes per side. I didn’t have time to make sweet potato fries in the oven (it was nearly 8:15 when I started making dinner!) so I broke out the panini maker, dusted the rounds with curry and cinnamon and grilled away. On the side my salad contained spinach, red bell pepper, cucumber, celery, sprouts, feta cheese, mushrooms and balsamic vinaigrette dressing.

I’m glad I had such a filling and satisfying breakfast because today I’m going to be running around the bakery for 6 hours :). I love my job, and even though I have a lot of school work to do it is a nice break and change of pace to be at work.

Have A Great Saturday,

Nora

What are your favorite summer time dishes? What is your favorite seasonal produce item?

Read Full Post »

After seeing last week’s Cook’s Mission competition, I knew I needed to get in on the game! I impatiently waited until Saturday when the ingredients were announced: Celeriac (celery root) and apples. I thought this would be a “no-brainer” because I have seen them prepared together before, and although I have never cooked with celeriac, have seen it prepared in a variety of fashions. The first thing that came to my mind was celeriac-apple puree. Done and done. That just didn’t seem good enough so my next thought went to celeriac-apple soup. Hmm…I have seen/heard of these before. As I searched online for recipes, I just became more confused and my creative juices slowly died. I didn’t want to make a dish that was typical or done before. I peeled myself away from celeriac-apple research and waited until one came to me: Risotto. Initially I was going to integrate the apples into the risotto but I already had thoughts of cranberry-apple chutney in my mind. (Hello THANKSGIVING!)  I decided to use the elements separately, but in a way that really complemented each other. I ended up mixing the chutney into the risotto and it was fantastic! All together my dish was: Celeriac Barley Risotto with Apple-Cranberry Chutney. After tasting the risotto and the chutney I decided to make a side dish of Honey-Orange Carrots and prepare a Pan-Seared Chicken Breast to round out the meal.

SERVES 1:

Barley Risotto:

1 TBS olive oil

1 TBS minced garlic

1/4 Lemon, juice and zest

cracked black pepper

1/2 Leek (white and light green parts only)

1/2 medium Celeriac bulb

1/4 cup quick cooking barley

1/4 cup white wine

1/2 cup Low Sodium Chicken Stock

2 TBS shredded Parmesan cheese

1 cup torn baby spinach

In a medium sauce at a medium heat add olive oil, garlic, black pepper and leeks; cook until soft. Add celeriac, lemon juice and zest; cook until celeriac is tender and slightly brown. Add barley and stir 1 minute. Add white wine and allow to simmer, then add chicken stock. Bring to a boil and then to a simmer. Allow to cook ~10 minutes stirring occasionally until all the liquid has absorbed. Take off heat and wilt in spinach and mix the parmesan cheese. The result is a creamy “risotto”!

Cranberry-Apple Chutney

1 tsp olive oil

1 shallot (white and light green)

2 sprigs of thyme (chopped)

1/4 Lemon, juice and zest

1/2 orange, juice and zest

1/2 cup orange juice

cinnamon

nutmeg

ground cloves

1/2 cup frozen cranberries

1/4 cup jumbo raisins

1 small Gala apple

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

In a small sauce pan add olive oil, shallot and thyme until tender. Add spices, apple, cranberry and raising and mix. Add lemon and orange juice and zest. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes. Allow to cool and add walnuts before serving.

I was going to make this tomorrow and use MY NEWEST PANTRY ITEM that came in the mail today, but I am going to Passover Sedar with my friend tomorrow night! She had too much going on this evening and decided to go to services tomorrow instead. I am so happy that I am going to be able to go after all. My how things change through the course of a day.

What is my newest pantry item you ask? Well, I am a sucker and couldn’t pass up on Kath‘s Open Sky deal for Kodiak Cakes. I have been eyeing these babies for a while now and can’t wait to give them a try. I had a savory pancake in mind for dinner, but you will just have to wait for another day to see my creation :).

Monday Funday (In The Kitchen),

Nora

Have you ever made a dish that is traditionally sweet into something savory or vice versa?

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »