Chicken w/ Maple Mustard Dill Sauce

A really great way to be “good” on a diet or on your healthy-eating kick is to change things up.  Make interesting food and don’t get stuck with the same old.  Experiment with spices and flavors.  You’ll be surprised at how many different things there are to try and how pleased you will be eating healthy when it’s exciting.

Something I like to do is to change up the sauces I use when I cook simple things like Chicken.  I had this recipe saved for about a year in my books and was really intrigued to try it.  Honestly- it seemed a little weird but I had everything in my fridge already so I figured why the heck not?

Pan-Roasted Chicken w/ Maple Mustard Dill Sauce

Serves 2

Ingredients:

2 (6-oz) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper 
Cooking spray 
1/2 chopped or sliced red onion 
6 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
4 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
1 tablespoon Water
1 teaspoon chopped Fresh Dill or 1/2 teaspoon dried (I used 1 tsp of Gourmet Garden)
1 teaspoon Grated Orange Rind

Preparation:

  1. Place each chicken breast half between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; pound each to 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or small heavy skillet. Sprinkle chicken evenly with salt and pepper. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add chicken to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until done. Remove chicken from pan.
  2. Reduce heat to medium.  Combine the syrup, mustard, water, dill, and orange in a small bowl and stir with a whisk until well combined.
  3. Add onion to pan; cook 1 minute. Add sauce; cook 1 minute or until thoroughly heated, stirring frequently. Serve sauce with chicken.

Very slightly adapted from: Cooking Light 

Makin' the sauce!

Makin’ the sauce!

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The one thing I wanted to do for this recipe was make it only for two (original was 4) but keep the same amount of sauce.  Dave loooooves lots of sauce with everything, so I thought it would be best for us.  It really worked out and I think the amount of sauce was perfect!

Served this with tons of veggies:  Roasted Asparagus, Roasted Tomato, and some Garlic Sauteed Spinach :)

Served this with tons of veggies: Roasted Asparagus, Roasted Tomato, and some Garlic Sauteed Spinach 🙂

maplemustardchick

I also have to mention that I recommend using REAL maple syrup.  Not the Aunt Jemima sugary crap.  If you haven’t yet, spend an extra couple of dollars and buy yourself the real stuff- it will work better in the recipe and then you’ll have plenty leftover for some life-changing pancakes.  This is also like, the bagillionth time I’ve used my Gourmet Garden tubed herbs… I cannot stress how awesome they are.

Meanwhile, as I mentioned earlier… I totally get that the maple-dill-mustard-orange combination seems a little strange.  I thought the same thing.  Get past it.  This sauce rocks- the flavors just work.  Don’t ask any questions, just do.  You’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Now let me go watch this show on Sci with Dave about King Crabs and how they are destroying their ecosystem!  AHH!  #HowISpendMyNights.

KingCrab

Smoked Salmon Dip

Do you ever have the kind of day or week where all you want to do is go home and eat a pint of Ben & Jerry’s?

Crying_icecream_eating

Come on, admit it.  You’ve been there.

I’m having that kind of week.  Work has been slow.  I feel fat.  My dog has been sick all over the house.  One ex-boyfriend got engaged this week, and another married.  Perfect timing, right?

Believe it or not, I somehow didn’t shove my face with Cherry Garcia.  Don’t get me wrong, I definitely fixed the problem with food… but this time I decided to make a snack that is more along the lines of my own personal comfort food.  This dip is an ode to one of my absolute favorite meals:  A great Jewish Bagel and Lox spread.  Nothing beats it.

Smoked Salmon Dip

Ingredients:

1 8oz tub of Whipped Greek Cream Cheese (or other light cream cheese)

2 Tablespoons Fresh Dill 

2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice

4oz Smoked Salmon, chopped

Directions:

1.  In a food processor, combine the cream cheese, fresh dill, and lemon juice.  Add HALF of the chopped smoked salmon.  Process until smooth.  

2.  Add the rest of the smoked salmon and stir by hand keeping the rest of the salmon in bigger pieces.  Serve with Slices of Everything Bagel, Everything Pretzel Crisps, Bagel Chips, or veggies.

Recipe slightly adapted from:  Cooking Light

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A few things about this recipe… besides the fact that it’s super delicious and awesome.

Greek Cream Cheese.  Try it.  It’s amazing!  Light Cream Cheese and Greek Yogurt mixed together to bring to you a sweeter tasting product with the same consistency as regular cream cheese.  Lower in fat, higher in protein.  Win-win situation here.

Gourmet Garden.  My new lifesaver.  You can buy these in the refrigerated produce section at your grocery store.  They are pre-washed and chopped fresh herbs in a tube that will last much longer than buying the fresh leaves.  You can freeze them too!

Smoked Salmon.  Every good Jew knows.  Every good friend of a Jew should know too.  This stuff is gold.  Simply delicious and salty.  If you don’t know what it is, get with it.  You can buy it most places but I highly recommend checking out the selection at Trader Joe’s.  They have one variety that is a 4oz container that is already in pieces that will save you some money.  I think it’s <$4.

Now that I’ve consumed almost a quarter of this dip… I can say that I am totally starting to feel better!  🙂

Green Hummus (2 Ways)

It so happens that St. Patty’s Day is the same week as my friend Donny’s Birthday.  What a perfect time for a party 🙂  Donny is a friend of ours that we met on our trip to Israel and also happens to be a MAJOR foodie.  Dare I even say more than I am?  Let me just tell you that the last time we visited, he sliced his own slab of bacon to cook up for us in the morning.  MMM!

Us hanging out at Donny's amazing townhouse in Baltimore last spring!

Needless to say, I felt like Donny’s birthday would be the perfect event to try out a few new recipes.  Donny suggested I try to make some kind of GREEN hummus for St. Patty’s holiday.  I found two completely different recipes that I had to test.  And so should you… they are delish!  If the green hummus is intimidating, try to start out with my basic hummus recipe.  It’s so easy and you’ll never buy it at the store again!

Four Herb Hummus

Ingredients:

1 handful Fresh Cilantro Leaves (1)

1 Tablespoon Dill (2)

1 teaspoon Parsley (3)

1 Tablespoon Basil (4, I used the fresh basil in a tube… sounds gross but its GREAT.  You can get it at the grocery store… or use fresh  leaves!)

Juice from 1/2 of a Lemon

2 teaspoons Minced Garlic

2 teaspoons Tahini Paste

1 can Chickpeas (save the liquid to use to make the right consistency if necessary)

1 teaspoon Olive Oil

1 teaspoon Salt

sprinkle or to taste Cayenne Pepper

Directions:


Blend everything together in a food processor.  Let it blend until all of the herbs are finely chopped and the chickpeas are no longer chunky.  Taste and season if necessary.  I garnished mine with a few cilantro leaves and a sprinkle of dill.  YUM!

Four Herb Hummus

Edamame Hummus

Inspired by Trader Joe’s Edamame Hummus

Ingredients:

2 cups Frozen Shelled Edamame Beans (I used Trader Joe’s)

1.5 Tablespoons Tahini Paste

1 Tablespoon EVOO

1 Tablespoon Minced Garlic

Juice from almost a whole Lemon

1 teaspoon Salt

sprinkle Cayenne Pepper

Directions:

1.  Put the edamame in a pot and cover with water.  Bring to a boil.  Cook for about 5 minutes or until beans are tender.  Drain and rinse under cold water to preserve the bright green color.

2.  Put everything in a food processor except a few edamame beans (save them for garnish).  Process until smooth and adjust seasoning if necessary.

3.  Serve chilled and garnish with a few edamame beans if you want.

Stelly wanted a taste! She didn't like that I was trying to use our hardwood floor as background for my pic lol

Edamame Hummus

HAPPY ST. PATTY’S DAY EVERYONE!  

HAVE FUN AND BE SAFE!