» Archive for the 'Cheese' Category

Roasted Peppers Pasta

Monday, February 17th, 2014 by Gabi

Don’t you love those days when you can freely fire up your oven, cooking in sub-zero, Polar Vortex days as we have this wonderful winter in Chicago. There’s something comforting about that. Looks like the North Pole decided to move down here and we are uber-thrilled. Or NOT.
Every now and then we would have enough of this, pack up and head to Florida for a month or so. At least we break this winter in two. That’s when I tried this roasted peppers pasta, inspired from Jamie Oliver’s Cook with Jamie

roasted peppers pasta

I twisted this recipe adding mushroom and asparagus, which both can be easily left out if you aren’t a fan of those. Same with Blue Cheese which understandably, isn’t everyone’s friend. This dish includes plenty assertive ingredients (anchovies, garlic, blue cheese) to have a glorious outcome.

Read the rest of this entry »

Sun Dried Tomato and Cheese Chicken Breast

Thursday, September 1st, 2011 by Gabi

Sun Dried Tomato & Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breast

Looks like I’ve been having my fill of BBQ this summer. Every Friday I pull it out and start improvising with whatever I have at hand that day. So the other day I opened an almost empty, un-inspiring fridge, to discover that I sill have a couple frozen chicken breasts, cream and blue cheese, olives, lemons, parsley and garlic and butter. “Garlic and butter!” I thought to myself… I am saved!

The Art of Slitting

Use this recipe as a guideline for stuffed chicken breasts. You can use whatever you have available to stuff, from spinach to pesto, dried fruit (like figs or apricots), artichoke hearts or asparagus tips. If it comes down to anything that you might have to pay attention to is how to slit the breast to make a nice pocket without ripping it.

The way I found it works is by placing the breast half horizontally on a cutting board and making an incision on the plumpier side of the breast not wider than say 1 inch then carefully making the inside pocket wider, working with the tip of your knife, going as close as possible to the edges without ripping.Once you stuff the breast, seal it with a wooden toothpick and off you go!

The ones here were stuffed with a mix of cream, Parmesan, blue cheese butter and garlic mix, sun dried tomato halves, olives and parsley

I marinated my stuffed chicken breasts in a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, parsley and garlic for about 1 hour before they went on a hot charcoal grill. There I had to babysit them pretty often by turning every 5 minutes or so, I got a nice crust and color.

So, really, try your hand at this — you will impress yourself and those around you!

Roasted Onion and Asiago Miche

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011 by Gabi

You know that fall is approaching when you start baking. Lately the temperature in Chicago was more baking-friendly so I thought it was time for another BBA Challenge dust-off here with a delicious Roasted Onion and Asiago Miche.

This is a protein-intense bread, surely because of the cheese overdrive content but worth making it again… annually. No, really I would make it more often but it requires attention and time. I really liked the asiago cheese in it because it gives an assertive taste, but you can simply substitute it for any other cheese from that same family (like Parmesan or Pecorino Romano).

Read the rest of this entry »

Roll Your Kaiser

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010 by Gabi

Kaiser Roll Sandwich

Look, this is not the healthiest breads of all, but sure makes a killer sandwich. Also thought it was time to dust off my Bread Baker’s Apprentice book and take on a new bread baking challenge. Summer is slowly tapering off with scattered bearable temperatures when I can finally heat up my oven to 425 without roasting everyone in the house. Who would have thought that this Kaiser roll bread would bring flashbacks of my childhood in Romania! I remember risking being late at our chemistry class (no one cared of) only to run and buy a couple of these Kaiser rolls being sold at our corner bakery. I am sure back then they called these something other than Kaiser Rolls, since little rolls baked in honor of Franz Joseph I of Austria would have gone against the grains of communism. Maybe they called them Lenin Rolls? Don’t remember…

Read the rest of this entry »

Pasta Pesto

Monday, August 16th, 2010 by Gabi

Pesto Rigatoni

In hot and humid Chicago summer days, when the AC is almost always on, (don’t remind me of the electricity bill), the last thing I want to do is spend the afternoon in the kitchen having the oven or stove on. I admit, I need an effort to become creative at whipping out dishes (decent ones, mind you) under one hour. I usually take refuge doing something on the grill, but there are days when I couldn’t bear the sight or smell of barbecued meat (as much as I love it!). So then, what do I do? Start by opening the fridge veggie bins for some inspiration. That quickly turns me off since sometimes all I find are some pathetic wilted scallions or forgotten half bell peppers. I am a very clumsy meal planner, so most of the time I have to improvise with what’s at hand. And oh look! What’s on our counter!! A beautiful bouquet of fresh basil that my brother in law brought over from his garden! My creative wheels start to turn. I open the freezer, there lies a package of walnuts. A jar of sun dried tomatoes in the fridge. Enough garlic to feed an army. I look at the clock – it’s 5:15 p.m. Heck, I might be able to pull it off too feed them for our religious 6 o’clock-dinner-on-the-table time. It’s Pesto!

Read the rest of this entry »