Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Cauliflower-Crumb-Coated Chicken Rollatini


 Cauliflower-Crumb-Coated Chicken Rollatini
- ShowFoodChef

My daughter is often an inspiration to me and others. Her recent adventure into "clean eating" has me trying to be more creative with simple, clean meals. I love a personal chef challenge.

One of my catering clients is gluten free, so I added that to my voluntary challenge and voila - Cauliflower Crumb Coating. 

I love these as a salad topping, which I learned from other food-lovers.  And, right when I thought I couldn't love Cauliflower more- now it also stands in for bread crumbs. The added bonus; Cauliflower is also good fiber, cancer fighting, anti-inflammatory, packed with B vitamins and aids in digestion. Well, yeah!

To make a good rollatini, make sure to pound out the chicken to an even paillard.
 Layer your filling,leaving some edges clear for folding.

Secure the ends and flap with 3 toothpicks (to be taken out before eating.)
 We served this for dinner, but I have to say the chilled version for lunch the next day was a hit, too.
Recipe (showfoodchef):
Chicken Rollatini with Quinoa, Goat Cheese, & Kale in Cauliflower Crumbs

1 cup Cauliflower pieces

Pinch of Paprika, Salt & Pepper

¼ tsp fresh thyme leaves

4 chicken breast fillets (pounded between plastic wrap to 1/8” thickness)

1 Roasted Red Pepper cut in 4 slices

1 cup Cooked Quinoa

2 oz. Goat cheese

½ cup chopped Kale


1 egg white – whipped till foamy

Lightly oil an 8x8 Baking Dish and set aside.

1)   In a food processor, pulse the cauliflower, paprika, salt, pepper and thyme till crumbs.  Pour into a flat bowl and save.

2)   In a small bowl, stir together the quinoa, goat cheese, kale and seasoning.  Hold.

3)   On each flattened chicken breasts lay a red pepper piece, and then spread a small layer of the quinoa mixture. 

4)   Roll each chicken breast up, being careful to contain the filling.  Use 3 toothpicks; one to close each side and end flap.

5)   Dip each Rollatini in foamy egg white, then roll or press on the Cauliflower crumbs and set the chicken side by side in the prepared baking dish.

6)   Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 25-30 minutes.  Allow to sit for 5minutes, then serve whole or sliced.  This is also good chilled or room temp.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Black Lentils in Balsamic Figs and Toasted Walnuts

It's still early in the New Year, so my body goes back and forth between craving healthy, good proteins with low sugar to the left-over holiday tin of See's Candy Toffee sitting on the console table. 

Please, somebody hide that thing!

Fixing simple meals like this and having them readily available in the fridge is helping the transition.

Black Lentils in Balsamic Figs and Toasted Walnuts -

1 cup Organic Black Lentils
1 Tbls Minced Onion
2 cups Vegetable Broth
2 cups Water
salt & pepper to taste
3 Dried Figs chopped small
½ cup Balsamic Vinegar
1/3 cup Walnuts, toasted and loosely chopped
Small bunch of fresh chopped Parsley
(garnished with dollop of goat cheese and avocado)

1)   Rinse lentils, then add onion and lentils to a saucepan over Med. Heat and stir to toast for about 3-5 minutes. 
2)   Pour in broth and water, bring to a boil, season, cover and reduce heat to low and simmer for about 25 minutes.  Drain and hold.
3)   While lentils are simmering, add the Balsamic Vinegar and Figs into another small saucepan and bring to a boil.  Continue cooking until thickened and reduced, for about 3-5 minutes.  Don’t leave unattended.
4)   Toss together the lentils, the Balsamic glaze and figs, the walnuts and finally the parsley.  Serve warm or chilled.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Pan-Seared Pork Chops with Garlic & Rosemary in Red Wine

You know dinner time is coming.  You put out 2 pork chops and now you're dreading cooking them the same ol' way.  

This recipe came to my rescue - maybe it will turn your weekday meal into a real dinner, too.

The recipe is adapted from and arrived with my wine gift box this year. Palmina recommended their Nebbiolo, but since I didn’t have that (aka: I drank it already), I tried the Barbera. 

Wine made from these grapes is usually a little more acidic than the lighter Nebbiolo, so I made Roasted Tomatoes for a side dish that matches and pairs well Barbera.

Barbera is a great “any night” wine and goes well with Pizza, too.  I agree with the motto: If you wouldn’t drink the wine WITH your food, don’t add it IN the food either.  The surprising lightness of the deep toned Barbera made all the difference between this being just another “pan pork chop” and the juicy, complex flavored pork-steak that we devoured. This recipe is so simple and elegant, yet casual and perfect for a weeknight meal.  It creates a satisfying dinner that can be on the table in 30 minutes.

Roasted Tomatoes
1 basket of Grape Tomatoes
Olive Oil (I used Basil infused)
Salt, Pepper

Slice each tomato and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Drizzle with oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, then toss.  Roast in a 350F oven for 15-20” while you prepare and sear the pork chops.

Pan Seared Pork Chops with Garlic & Rosemary in Red Wine-
2 pork chops
4 cloves fresh garlic, sliced in halves
4 springs fresh rosemary
½ cup all purpose flour
4 Tblsp Olive Oil
¾ cup Barbera
Sea Salt and Pepper

Season pork chops with salt and pepper, then dredge in flour.
Heat skillet on high and add oil.  Once hot, sear pork chops on each side over high heat until browned.
Add garlic and rosemary to the pan (1 sprig under each chop, 1 on top.)  Add wine over chops and bring to a boil.

Season with salt and place the entire pan in the oven at 450F for 12 minutes.
Carefully remove chops to sit for a few minutes before slicing or serving with side dish and the pan-seared garlic.