Posts Tagged ‘spinach’

Spinach and Mushroom Stuffed Chicken Breast

November 13, 2009

I always laugh when I see estimated times given on “quick” recipes, and I think to myself that if I had a full kitchen prep staff to do all my chopping/dicing/grinding/pre-measuring and then set my ingredients out in nice little bowls (reference any cooking show on Food Network) I, too, could manage a four course dinner (made completely from scratch) in under 15 minutes!

Mama's Little Helper Part 2 IMG_4350

Kitchen Staff

Meet my own personal “Kitchen Prep Staff”…he is excellent at systematically unloading each and every kitchen cabinet while I work on dinner!  Anyone with a toddler will understand if I say I cook in the “Stork Pose”

Stork Pose 001a

Stork Pose

(defined as the pose used by a toddler mom who’s hands are busy with cooking/pouring laundry soap into the washer/trying to put on makeup; it involves balancing on one food while using the other to keep a child out of a cabinet/the toilet/the dog food bowl/etc.)   If you laugh at my sad attempt to illustrate this, you will then need to email me something better which I can post instead ;-)

That being said, if I can manage prep for this delish recipe in under 30 minutes with a hungry and ADHD toddler running amuck in my kitchen, I think it is worthy of a “Supper Quick” post!  

While this is not technically a quick recipe…it’s also not nearly as involved as it sounds, and for just a little extra effort turns out the most divine chicken!  This is what I call “Mother-in-law Chicken”, meaning it’s the perfect recipe to pull out when you are in a hurry but need a main course with which to wow your mother-in-law with your culinary prowess ;-)

Spinach and Mushroom Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Prep Time: 20 minutes / Cook Time: 20 minutes / Yield: 2 large breasts (feeds 3-4)

  1. Brine chicken breasts (boneless, skinless)
  2. In a skillet, saute 1/3 cup chopped onion in olive oil until it begins to turn translucent; add 1 cup chopped spinach (or slightly less), 1/3 cup chopped mushrooms1/4+ tsp salt, and a pat of butter and saute until spinach is wilted.  Set aside in a small bowl to cool; when cool, mix in 1/3 cup shredded mozzarella and a sprinkling of feta.  Keep your skillet out as you will need it again (no need to wash it!) 
    Spinach Stuffed Chicken Part 1a

    Spinach Filling

     

  3. Butterfly chicken breasts and flatten to 1/4 inch

    Butterfly Chicken

    Butterfly Chicken Breasts

  4. Coat chicken with Italian Dressing, both inside and outside; sprinkle liberally with mixture of seasoned breadcrumbs, basil and parmesan cheese (or you can use plain breadcrumbs and add Italian Seasoning)
  5. Fill chicken breasts with spinach mixture, fold over and secure with twine or toothpicks.

    Spinach Stuffed Chicken Part 1

    Fill with Spinach Mixture

  6. Transfer chicken to skillet and sear in melted butter for just a couple minutes on each side until outside is golden.

    Spinach Stuffed Chicken Part 2

    Sear stuffed breasts before baking

  7. Transfer to oven proof baking dish and top with grated cheddar and mozzarella; bake covered at 350°F for 20 minutes, removing cover for the last 5 minutes to let cheese brown.  

    Spinach Stuffed Chicken Part 3

    Bake and Enjoy!

  8. Enjoy!  Serve with baked Butternut Squash, angel hair pasta, and warm dinner rolls.

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Spinach and Cheddar Frittata

October 12, 2009
Spinach & Mozzarella Frittata with Mushrooms

Spinach & Mozzarella Frittata with Mushrooms

Tonight was one of those evenings…the ones where at 7:30 we were starving, and not only had I not given dinner one thought, but we were out of leftovers, I had no meat thawed, and I was not in the mood to cook!

This recipe has become a favorite for times such as this.  It’s versatile and can be tweaked almost any way depending on what you have on hand…

Cheese and Spinach Frittata

Yield – 8 slices / Time in Kitchen – 15 minutes

  • 6 eggs
  • about 1 cup spinach (fresh chopped or frozen)
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 black pepper
  • Fresh chopped or Dehydrated Onion (optional)
  • Crushed herbs or other seasoning (optional)
  • Mushrooms, diced bell pepper or tomatoes, other veggies (optional) 
  • Diced meat (optional – cooked ham slices or sandwich meat work great, or shredded chicken)
  • about 1 cup shredded cheese, any type
  1. Beat eggs and seasoning together in a large bowl.
  2. Fold in your additions and about half the cheese 
  3. Cook mixture in a large, greased skillet (as you would scrambled eggs) no more than 2-3 min or just before eggs begin to set.
  4. Transfer the still-gooey mixture into a greased pie plate, top with remaining cheese, and bake at 400 degrees for 5 minutes or until eggs set and cheese on top bubbles. 
  5. Serve with toast and fruit or sliced tomato drizzled with vinaigrette and frozen dinner rolls

I love this recipe because it has all the healthy goodness and speed of an omlet, with the texture of a Quiche.  As I mentioned, it’s an extremely versatile recipe and another great way to use up veggies which have started to droop.  It’s also very protein rich and quite filling, so husbands need not be afraid of having a “girly dinner” :-)         

Modification Ideas:

  • Start with a base of eggs and chopped spinach, and go from there!
  • If you don’t have spinach on hand, substitute other veggies…peppers, onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, be creative and use what you have around.
  • Match your seasoning with your cheese…dill and swiss, mozzarella and basil, rosemary and cheddar, salsa and colby jack,  be creative!
  • Keep it simple…make sure you don’t have too many overpowering or competing flavors; mushrooms, mozzarella and Italian Seasoning make a perfectly simple and delicious addition to the eggs and spinach base.
  • Diced ham or shredded chicken can add wonderful flavor, but kep in mind you are getting all the protein you need in a main dish from the eggs, so no need to worry if you don’t have any meat on hand!  

Quick Pesto

October 9, 2009
Basil PestoI love spinach salad, however there always seems to be that last serving left we never get to before it starts to droop.   Try this quick and easy pesto recipe for a fresh addition to your supper…and a budget friendly way to keep aging veggies out of the trash:
  • about 2 cups fresh spinach (it’s ok if it’s a bit wilted!)
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/8 -1/4 cup olive oil…start with a little and add until desired consistency

Combine all ingredients together in a blender or small food processor, and in two minutes you will have a delicious pesto!  If you don’t have fresh basil on hand, experiment with dried herbs…crushed dried basil, Italian Seasoning, cilantro, crushed rosemary…pick your favorite, but start with just one until you know how the flavors will combine.

Tip:  freeze extra pesto in ice cube trays and then store in the freezer in an airtight container; each cube is about 1 oz