Lemon and Garlic Marinated Skillet Chicken

Five Ingredients one great marinade!  Sorry forgot the garlic in the photo!

Five Ingredients one great marinade! Sorry forgot the garlic in the photo!

This recipe is totally inspired by a stand I found on School St.  in Chatham.  We were driving down this little street and we came across an honor stand where a family was selling their own homemade Maple Syrup (made in New York) and their own sea salt harvested from Mill Pond in Chatham.  Crazy!!  Couldn’t resist buying some and all you did was shove some cash in a slot on the table.  If you are in Chatham take a drive down School St. just two blocks off Shore Rd. near the light house.

The marinade is so simple and makes great leftover chicken for salads.  Try making a chicken salad for your lunch the next day.  Easy and delicious.

Monomoy Wild Sea Salt and Monomoit Maple Syrup from School St. in Chatham, MA

Monomoy Wild Sea Salt and Monomoit Maple Syrup from School St. in Chatham, MA

Lemon and Garlic Marinated Skillet Chicken

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 1hour
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 1.75-2 lbs skinless boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1-2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • Juice from 1-2 lemons
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2-3 chopped garlic cloves

Directions

  1. Season chicken with salt and pepper
  2. Combine lemon juice, olive oil and garlic in a small dish and whisk or beat together with a fork
  3. Place chicken in a glass dish or plastic bag and cover with the marinade.
  4. Let sit in fridge overnight or for at least 1 hour.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  6. Heat heavy bottomed skillet (preferably ovenproof such as cast iron) over medium high heat.
  7. Oil pan so chicken doesn’t stick.
  8. Shake excess oil off of your chicken and then place in the pan
  9. Cook for 3-4 minutes until you have a great sear on one side.  Turn over your chicken.
  10. Cook for 3-4 more minutes to get a good sear or golden color on your chicken if you are not using the same pan in the oven otherwise go ahead and cook in the oven.
  11. Cook for 15-20 minutes until your chicken reaches an internal temperature of 160-165.  165 is the safe temperature but you can let it finish cooking in the hot pan on top of the stove.

Note: My chicken breasts were all different sizes and thicknesses so I took the two smaller ones out after 15 minutes and the thicker ones took almost 25!  So you can either cut your chicken pieces to an even thickness of say 3/4 to 1″ or check the smaller pieces and take them out earlier.

Look at the size of the salt crystals from this locally harvested sea salt in Chatham!

Look at the size of the salt crystals from this locally harvested sea salt in Chatham!

 

31 Summer Recipes Inspired by Chatham

Mashpee Beach on 4th of July

Mashpee Beach on 4th of July

I love Cape Cod. I have been coming for at least a week every summer since I was 8. Stepping onto the beach is always magical whether it’s a rainy day or 100 degrees in mid July.  And the food….  fried clams, lobster, oyster, corn on the cob, chocolate from the Candy Manor, lobster, ice cream, did I mention lobster?

This summer I get to spend almost 6 weeks on the cape with most of my kids and my husband on weekends. What a privilege.  To commemorate the next 4-5 weeks I am going to post 31 summer recipes! Simple fish dishes, one big over the top clam bake (maybe this is a little daunting), summer salad ideas and lots of easy dishes inspired by the weekly farmer’s markets.

One of the challenges most cape vacationers face is eating healthy while here.  I always believe in a few cheats a week but an entire week or two can really make you feel sluggish and well for lack of a better word – FAT.  My big challenges:

  • smell of fried food
  • the the constant begging by the family to eat out
  • limited kitchen resources in your typical rental house
  • lure of the Candy Manor in Chatham

To overcome these challenges the goal is to keep great food in the fridge so we aren’t always tempted.  I have an abundance of kitchen tools at home but the next few weeks are limited as we are moving between renting and house sitting 4 different houses. That’s a lot of packing up and moving on Saturdays!!  So far its going pretty well as my youngest and I have been working out together and making pretty healthy meals.

Here are a couple of summer salad ideas so far.  Happy Summer Everyone!

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Poached Chicken with Roasted Beets from the Farmer’s Market

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Cobb Salad? – Not quite but close with Lemon Herb Dressing

Red Roasted Chicken

Red Roasted Chicken

Red Roasted Chicken

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 1 hour marinade, 15 min prep and 1 hour to roast
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients

  • 3-4 lb roasting chicken.  You can use a bigger chicken just adjust your time in the oven.
  • 3-4 cloves chopped garlic
  • sea salt and ground pepper
  • 2 tbs paprika
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 tbs grass fed butter or ghee
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 12 ounces of chopped tomatoes
  • 1-2 tbs chopped parsley

Directions

  1. Remove excess fat from your chicken and pat dry with paper towels.  (It is up for debate whether you should ‘rinse’ chicken as it spreads bacteria (salmonella!) around your kitchen.  I no longer rinse my chicken I just cook it thoroughly.)
  2. Mix together the garlic, 1 tsp salt and pepper, paprika and the vinegar.
  3. Rub over the chicken and place in a glass dish or plastic bag to marinate for at least an hour.  You can also do this in the morning or night before and let it marinate all day.
  4. Preheat oven to 350
  5. Heat oil in a large oven proof skillet.  (Best to use cast iron if you have it.)
  6. Pull chicken out of the marinade and shake off excess vinegar.
  7. Turn heat to medium and add your chicken breast side down first to brown.  Cook for 3-4 minutes.  Using a tong turn chicken over and brown the other side again for 3-4 minutes.
  8. Remove chicken to a plate.
  9. Add butter to your pan and sauté the onion with a pinch more salt and pepper for 3-5 minutes.  Add canned tomatoes and 1/2 cup of water.  Stir to combine.
  10. Place chicken on top of vegetables and place in preheated oven.  Roast for 1 hour or until the internal temperature of the thigh meat registers about 180 degrees.  (A larger chicken can take up to 30 minutes longer.) The leg should be loose when twisted.
  11. Set the chicken on a cutting board to rest.
  12. Tip skillet to one side and spoon off most or all of the fat.
  13. Carve the chicken into legs, thighs and breast to serve with the sauce in the pan as a gravy.
  14. Garnish with parsley.

Here are a few photos of what each step looks like:IMG_0137

Chicken in the Marinade

Chicken in the Marinade

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Be patient and get a nice golden color on your chicken!

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End result is a really juicy delicious chicken. The meat is also great for leftovers!


This recipe is adapted from Sue Miliken and Susan Feniger’s recipe – Red Roasted Chicken on the Today Show.  I used canned versus fresh tomatoes because I live in the north east and our ‘fresh’ tomatoes don’t really have that much flavor most of the year.

 

Two Meatball Recipes for Ground Beef

Spinach Meatballs and Sweet Potato Beef Patties. with Special Burger Sauce

Spinach Meatballs and Sweet Potato Beef Patties. with Special Burger Sauce

Packable Paleo or even non paleo lunches seem to be a problem for so many parents.  How do you pack something the kids will actually eat at school?  They can’t reheat leftovers and sandwiches are off the table in my house.  For the last three years I have mostly relied on making different versions of my 20 minute Chicken Soup but there is only so many times I can send that in before the thermos comes back full.  Meatballs are a BIG hit in my house.  In fact, I have to make so many at a time because the family swarms the kitchen as they come out of the oven and I have to hide some for the next day’s lunches!

This past week I decided to mix it up and try some new recipes for meatballs.  The  first one is a Sweet Potato and Beef Slider.  This tastes sooooo good.  They were gone immediately and I had to make a second batch this morning.  Yes I made them for breakfast and my two daughter’s lunches before they left for school/work at 7:10 am.   I have been waking up literally with the birds this spring.  The ingredient list for this recipe is so short.  Here are all the ingredients on my cutting board and you could probably add or swap out different herbs to change the taste very easily.

All the ingredients for Sweet Potato and Beef Sliders

All the ingredients for Sweet Potato and Beef Sliders

 

The second recipe involved just looking in my freezer and fridge, quickly cooking some frozen spinach and onion and forming the meat balls.  They are simple and more plain.  You could probably add some garlic powder and/or chili to spice these up but I wanted to keep the flavors simple so they didn’t smell too strong in the lunch room!  I served both meatballs or sliders with the Special Burger Sauce which was very tasty.

Enjoy!

 

Spinach Meatballs – Quick and Easy

These are simple and fast meatballs that are quick to form and great bite size snacks.

 

My Daughter's lunch with Spinach Meatballs and Special Burger Sauce.

My Daughter’s lunch with Spinach Meatballs and Special Burger Sauce.

Spinach Meatballs

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 20-30 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces of frozen chopped spinach
  • 1/2 large chopped onion
  • coconut oil or extra virgin olive oil
  • 1-2 tsp sea or kosher salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg (optional)
  • 1 tsp herbs to provence or other seasoning blend
  • 1 egg
  • 1.5 lb. grass fed ground beef

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place onion in a food processor and pulse.  Add spinach and pulse again.
  3. Heat oil in a medium sauté pan over medium heat.
  4. Cook spinach and onion together for 5-8 minutes to help sweat out the water.
  5. In a large bowl, combine beef, seasonings, lightly beaten egg and spinach mixture. (yes it will be a little hot)
  6. Combine with your hands and then form into meatballs.  I made about 24 meatballs.
  7. Line a rimmed baking pan with foil.  Add an oven proof grate to the pan if you have one and place meatballs on the grate.
  8. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 157-160 degrees.  ( if you take them out at 157 degrees they will continue to cook to 160)
  9. Serve with Special Burger Sauce or condiments of your choice!

Here are a few photos of what each step looks like:

Cooking the veggies:

Cooking frozen spinach with onions and a little salt.

Cooking frozen spinach with onions and a little salt.

Lining a baking sheet and placing meatballs on a oven proof grate if you have it..

Meatballs on a lined baking sheet with a cookie cooling grate that is oven proof

Meatballs on a lined baking sheet with a cookie cooling grate that is oven proof

Sweet Potato and Beef Sliders – Easy and Delicious

Sweet Potato and Beef Sliders or Meatballs served with Special Burger Sauce

Sweet Potato and Beef Patties on the left

Sweet Potato and Beef Patties on the right!

All the ingredients you need to make the sliders!  Easy!

All the ingredients you need to make the sliders! Easy!

Sweet Potato and Beef Sliders

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Time: 20-30 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 3 cups chopped or shredded sweet potato
  • 1/2 large onion (about 3/4-1 cup) chopped onion
  • 3 -4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tsp tumeric
  • 1-2 tsp sea salt
  • 3-4 tbs fresh parsley leaves (optional)
  • 1 egg
  • 1.5 lbs of grass fed ground beef
  • coconut oil

Directions

  1. Pulse first 6 ingredients in a food processor until it resembles a nice orange coarse sand.
  2. In a large bowl lightly beat your egg.
  3. Add ground beef and sweet potato mixture into your bowl and combine with your hands.
  4. Form small oval shaped patties or meatballs

Two Options to cook the Patties or Meatballs

Skillet Frying – 10-20 minutes depending on

  1. Heat a large flat bottomed skillet (or two) and add enough coconut oil to completely cover bottom of the pan over medium high heat.
  2. Add patties to pan and cook for 1-2 minutes and then cover the pan.  This allows the meat to cook more evenly before you burn the patties.  Cook for 1-2 more minutes.
  3. Flip the patties and cook for 2-4 more minutes until the patties are 157-160 degrees faranheit on an instant read thermometer.  The range in time depends on size of your patties and heat of your pan.
  4. To cook more batches you will need to scrape your pan clean or you will set off your FIRE ALARM like I did.

Oven Baking – 20 -30 minutes

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line a large baking pan with a 3/4 inch edge on it with aluminum foil (for easy clean up).
  3. If you have it add a grate and place patties or meatballs on the grate.
  4. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes.  Once again time depends on the true temp of your oven and the size of your patties/meatballs.
  5. Bake until internal temperature measures 157-160 degrees.
  6. Optional – turn on your broiler and crisp the meatballs for about 1 minute under the broiler.
  7. Serve with Special Burger Sauce or condiments of your choice!

Here are a few photos of what each step looks like:

Pulsed sweet potatoes…

Pulse veggies in a food processor

Pulse veggies in a food processor

Frying the patties in a skillet..

Frying sliders or patties in a skillet.  Careful they burn easily.

Frying sliders or patties in a skillet. Careful they burn easily.

 

Or you can bake them!

Meatballs on a lined baking sheet with a cookie cooling grate that is oven proof

Meatballs on a lined baking sheet with a cookie cooling grate that is oven proof

Delicious Mother’s Day Egg in a Nest

Need an idea for Sunday morning brunch for Mom?  Well here is a very tasty all paleo treat for your favorite Mom.  It takes about an hour (don’t get scared) but most of that is baking.

Egg in a Nest

Egg in a Nest

Isn’t it cute?  I’ve now tested this recipe 3 times and I think I have worked out most of the kinks.

Almost all of the ingredients - Shredded Sweet Potato, eggs, salt, pepper, melted butter and cinnamon

You can cook it more if you like your yolks firmer but its pretty yummy with a soft cooked center!

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Most of the ingredients – minus the cinnamon and melted butter.

 

Egg in a Nest

  • Servings: 6 nests
  • Time: 45 minutes
  • Difficulty: medium
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Ingredients

  • 3.5 cups shredded sweet potato or yam.  I used hanna sweet potatoes, the lighter colored sweet potatoes at my local Whole Foods.
  • 8 eggs
  • 2 tbs melted grass fed butter
  • 2 tsp kosher or sea salt and 2 tsp ground pepper
  • Optional – 2 tsp cinnamon (half the family in my house likes the cinnamon and half prefer it without so up to you)
  • coconut oil for your muffin pan
  • Crumbled bacon or diced (1/4″ cubes) pancetta

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease your Jumbo muffin pan with coconut oil.  I used a  3.5″ diameter jumbo muffin pan.
  3. Combine 2 eggs and butter in a bowl and whisk or stir it until combined.
  4. In a larger bowl, season your shredded sweet potato with salt, pepper and optional cinnamon or other seasonings.  Thoroughly stir to spread your seasonings evenly.
  5. Stir egg mixture into sweet potatoes and stir until combined.
  6. Divide your sweet potato between the 6 jumbo muffin cups.  You may have more than enough sweet potato so I have you make enough for extra increase
  7. Press the sweet potato into the muffin cup up the sides and on the bottom.
  8.  Bake for 19-25 minutes.  (Mine look slightly burned because I didn’t fully heat the oven and it was still preheating!).
  9. Your baskets or nests will be golden brown and should come out cleanly from your muffin tin.
  10. Now add a cracked egg to each muffin tin inside your sweet potato basket.
  11. Bake for another 8-12 minutes depending on how done you like your eggs.  8 minutes is more soft and runny and 12  minutes they should be totally set.
  12. While baking – heat up your bacon crumbles or chopped pancetta.
  13. To get your nests out of the pan, run a knife around the edge to make sure nothing is sticking and pop it out with a knife.
  14. Sprinkle each nest with crumbled bacon or pancetta hot from a pan.

Push shredded potato into the sides and bottom of your muffin pan

Push sweet potatoes into the bottom and sides with your fingers.

Push sweet potatoes into the bottom and sides with your fingers.

After the first bake and an egg to each muffin

Adding eggs to each nest and then bake for 8-12 minutes.

Adding eggs to each nest and then bake for 8-12 minutes.