Lately, on the Dinner Menu

I’ve come to the realization that I photograph almost everything I eat. Partially because it looks too good not to capture on camera. And partially because food is something I find blog-worthy. So here’s another round-up of the latest and greatest dishes coming out of the Riley kitchen.

Chicken Bacon Ranch Mac & Cheese

Pinterest, you are so good to me and my voracious appetite/bacon addiction. That’s where I found this recipe for this cheesy, bacony, ranchy (?) goodness. And it comes from the blog, Look First, Then Cook. Don’t you just love it when you find all your favorite things rolled up into one recipe?

Ingredients

  • 8  ounces  uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 1  slice applewood-smoked bacon
  • 8  ounces  skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1  tablespoon  butter
  • 1  tablespoon  all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2  cups  fat-free milk
  • 1/3  cup  condensed 45% reduced-sodium 98% fat-free cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
  • 3/4  cup  (3 ounces) shredded six-cheese Italian blend (such as Sargento)
  • 1/2  teaspoon  onion powder
  • 1/2  teaspoon  garlic powder
  • 1/2  teaspoon  chopped fresh dill
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/2  cup  (2 ounces) shredded colby-Jack cheese

Directions

  1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain.
  2. Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon from pan, reserving drippings in pan. Finely chop bacon; set aside. Increase heat to medium-high. Add chicken to drippings in pan; sauté 6 minutes or until done.
  3. Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat; sprinkle flour evenly into pan. Cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Combine milk and soup, stirring with a whisk; gradually add milk mixture to saucepan, stirring with a whisk. Bring to a boil; cook 2 minutes or until thick. Remove from heat; let stand 4 minutes or until sauce cools to 155°. Add Italian cheese blend, onion powder, garlic powder, dill, and salt, stirring until cheese melts. Stir in pasta and chicken.
  4. Preheat broiler.
  5. Spoon mixture into an 8-inch square baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with reserved bacon and colby-Jack cheese. Broil 3 minutes or until cheese melts.

Chicken Cutlets with Tomato Saute

This colorful recipe from Real Simple reminds of Christmas. But at under 300 calories, you don’t have to break out the stretchy pants to enjoy it.

Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 pounds small chicken cutlets (8 to 12)
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pints grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 3/4 cup dry white wine (such as Sauvignon Blanc)
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh tarragon leaves, chopped

Directions

  1. Season the chicken with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Working in 2 batches, cook the chicken until browned and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to plates.
  3. Add the tomatoes to the skillet and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until they begin to burst, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Add the wine and simmer until the liquid is reduced by half, 2 to 3 minutes.
  5. Stir in the scallions and tarragon and serve with the chicken.

Roasted Tilapia, Potatoes & Lemons

We’ve made this Real Simple recipe a couple times before, but for some reason, this time it is really hit the spot. Only 374 calories a serving and still yummy.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound baby potatoes (about 12), halved
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 8 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives
  • 4 6-ounce skinless tilapia fillets
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss the potatoes, lemon, thyme, 2 tablespoons oil, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer.
  3. Roast, tossing once, until the potatoes begin to soften, about 20 minutes.
  4. Toss the olives with the potato mixture; nestle the fish in it. Drizzle the fish with the remaining oil and season with paprika and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper.
  5. Continue to roast until the potatoes are golden brown and crisp and the fish is opaque throughout, 12 to 15 minutes.

Chicken Marsala

I’ve always thought Chicken Marsala was a really difficult dish to make, since it’s a staple at most Italian restaurants. But with this Taste of Home recipe, it’s actually pretty easy. And delicious, I might add.

Ingredients

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breast halves (5 ounces each)
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon minced fresh basil or 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • Dash salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2-1/4 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup marsala wine or chicken broth
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. Flatten chicken to 1/2-in. thickness. In a resealable plastic bag, combine the flour, basil, salt and pepper. Add chicken, one piece at a time, and shake to coat.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, cook chicken in 1 tablespoon butter for 4-5 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer reads 170*deg;. Remove and keep warm.
  3. In the same skillet, saute mushrooms in remaining butter for 4-5 minutes or until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in wine and lemon juice, stirring to loosen browned bits from pan. Bring to a boil; cook until liquid is reduced by a third.
  4. Return chicken to the pan. Sprinkle with cheese. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 1-2 minutes or until heated through. Yield: 2 servings.

Potato, Ham & Spinach Frittata

After getting home late from work last night, Mikey greeted me with a clean kitchen and a frittata in the oven. It made my day. And my week. Recipe courtesy of Real Simple, of course.

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 small russet potatoes (about 3/4 pound), peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 9 large eggs
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 10 oz. package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed of excess liquid
  • 4 oz. white cheddar, grated (1 cup)
  • 4 oz. thinly sliced deli ham, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijion mustard

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large oven-proof nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the potatoes and onion and cook tossing occasionally, until the potatoes are tender, 12 to 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Mix in the spinach, Cheddar and ham.
  3. Add the egg mixture to the skillet, stir once and transfer the skillet to oven. Cook until the eggs are set, 12 to 14 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper.

Happy eating!

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2 Comments

Filed under Food

2 responses to “Lately, on the Dinner Menu

  1. ebonyjohanna

    I really like the chicken and tomato recipe above. I will have to try it!

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