Squash Gratin

Squash Gratin is so unbelievably easy to prepare and it combines just a handful of ingredients into a rich, cruchy gratin.

IMG_6067

Squash Gratin
(Adapted from recipe courtesy of FoodandWine.com, July 2015)

Serves 6

2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
4 medium zucchini, sliced lengthwise, about 1/8-inch-thick
4 garlic cloves, sliced
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup panko
1 cup shredded Gruyere cheese

Preheat oven to 450F.

In a 2-quart ovenproof baking dish, combine the zucchini, garlic and oil. Toss to coat and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the squash in the dish and bake for 20 minutes, until tender. Remove and sprinkle with panko and cheese and bake for another 10 minutes, until golden and crisp on top. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken with Spinach Goat Cheese

Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken with Spinach Goat Cheese in corporates several great flavors into one grilled bundle.

IMG_6059

Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken with Spinach Goat Cheese
(Mark Kelly, 2015)

Serves 4

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded out to about half thickness
8 oz. fresh spinach leaves
12 oz. creamy goat cheese
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/4 red onion, finely chopped
1 tsp red pepper flakes
12 slices prosciutto
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil

In a medium non-stick skillet over medium heat, soften the onion and garlic, along with the red pepper flakes, in a bit of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Allow to cool.

Place four groups of three prosciutto slices over-lapping slightly on a foil-covered baking sheet. Place a chicken breast on each set of prosciutto. Cover each chicken breast with a generous layer of spinach. Divide the goat cheese among the chicken breasts. Top with the onion-garlic mixture.

Tightly roll the prosciutto around each chicken breast and secure with tooth picks. Refrigerate for an hour before grilling. Remove from the refrigerator about 15 minutes prior to grilling. Brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Heat grill to medium. Place a solid cast iron grilling plate over the heat and allow to warm for 10 minutes. Place a layer of foil over the grill plate and spray it with cooking spray. Place the chicken breasts on the plate without crowding and sear on all sides. Close the grill and cook until internal temperature reaches 165F. Allow to stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Vegetable Toad-In-The-Hole

Vegetable and Bacon Toad-In-The-Hole is a kind Yorkshire pudding with fresh summer vegetables baked into the center. It is definitely less pizza and more pudding than I expected and I may try to make my next one with more of a pizza dough. Serve Vegetable and Bacon Toad-In-The-Hole for brunch or for dinner with a nice side salad.

IMG_6043

Vegetable Toad-In-The-HoleIMG_6040

Makes 4 servings

2 large eggs
3/4 cup fat-free milk
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 Tbsp whole grain mustard, divided
3 Tbsp vegetable oil, divided
Kosher salt
4 strips of crisp bacon, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
2 small carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 2-inch lengths and blanched
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 medium onion, trimmed, halved and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 oz. thin green beans, blanched
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
1 Tbsp finely chopped basil
1 Tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp finely chopped thyme
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup finely grated parmesan

In a large skillet over medium heat soften the onion and garlic in the butter, about 3 minutes. Season with a generous pinch of salt. Add the green beans and cook another 3 minutes. Add the carrots, tomatoes, basil, parsley, thyme, and 1 tablespoon of mustard. Cook for another minute and re-season with salt and pepper. Let stand.

Preheat oven to 400F.

In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with the milk, flour and 2 tablespoons of mustard, 1 tablespoon of oil and a generous pinch of salt. Let the batter stand for about 15 minutes.

Add the remaining oil to a 9-inch-square baking pan and heat in the oven for 10 minutes.

Our the batter evenly into the hot pan. Scatter the vegetable mixture on top. Sprinkle with the bacon strips and top with the grated cheese. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until puffed and lightly browned. Cut into squares and serve.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Fresh Corn Polenta with Sauteed Cherry Tomatoes

Fresh Corn Polenta with Sauteed Cherry Tomatoes is a great version of an Ample Bites favorite side. The fresh corn mixed into the creamy polenta and the topping of sweet cherry tomatoes give this staple a cheery summer flair.

IMG_6016

IMG_6003

Fresh Corn Polenta with Sauteed Cherry Tomatoes
(Adapted from recipe courtesy of Tasting Table, 2015)

Makes 4 large servings

For Polenta

3 cups fat-free milk
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
Pinch Kosher salt
1 cup corn meal
2 cups fresh corn kernels (from about 2 medium ears)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan

For Tomato Topping

3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 pints fresh cherry tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh herbs (such as oregano, thyme, basil and parsley)
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp finely grated Parmesan

To prepare the polenta: Preheat oven to 200F Warm setting. In a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat add milk and bring to a gentle boil Add butter, salt, corn meal and corn and gently stir until the mixture returns to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the polenta is thick and smooth, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in the Parmesan. Cover the skillet and transfer to the oven to keep warm.

To prepare the tomato topping: Heat a large skillet over high heat, add oil, tomatoes, garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook until the tomatoes burst, 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the herbs and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve over the polenta with Parmesan sprinkled on top.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Asian-Marinated Baked Chicken Thighs

Asian-Marinated Baked Chicken Thighs is a dish that has crispy skin and super moist meat. The peppers impart just a bit of zing and the other marinade ingredients give the chicken a definitive, yet subtle, Asian flavor.

IMG_6010

Asian-Marinated Baked Chicken Thighs
(Adapted from recipe courtesy of Chef Naomi Pomeroy, 2015)

Serves 6

12 large garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
5 serrano chiles, stemmed, seeded and thinly sliced
1 1/4 cups extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
3 Tbsp fish sauce
1 Tbsp sesame oil
1 Tbsp Kosher salt
2 lemons. sliced in 1/4-inch-thick rings
6 sprigs thyme
12 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs with excess flaps of skin removed

Whisk together in a large bowl, garlic, chiles, ginger, olive oil, sesame oil, vinegar, sugar, fish sauce, and salt until salt and sugar dissolve. Add lemon slices and thyme. Place chicken in a large zip-top plastic bag and cover with marinade. Refrigerate for at least 12 hours and preferably overnight. Turn occasionally to coat the chicken. Remove from the refrigerator at least an hour before baking.

Preheat oven to 450F. Remove chicken from marinade, shaking off excess. Place skin-side up on a large rimmed baking sheet, taking care not to crowd the chicken pieces. Roast until cooked through with an internal temperature of 165F, about 25-30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Herbed Turkey Burgers with Red Onion Aioli

Herbed Turkey Burgers with Red Onion Aioli combine the strong flavors of basil, parsley and a bit of jalapeno with the silky smoothness of a homemade aioli. The Red Onion Aioli is as good on french fries or baked parmesan potatoes as it is on a burger.

IMG_5995Herbed Turkey Burgers with Red Onion Aioli
(Mark Kelly, 2015)

Makes 6 burgers

2 lbs ground turkey
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/3 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts
1/2 medium jalapeno, stemmed, seeded and chopped
1/3 cup light mayonnaise
1 Tbsp anchovy paste
Freshly ground black pepper

1 large red onion, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch-thick rings
6 garlic cloves, peeled
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

To prepare aioli: Preheat oven to 400F. Spray cooking spray on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Place the red onion rings on the baking sheet and drizzle with oil. Place the garlic cloves in a small foil packet, drizzle with oil and seal. Place the garlic packet on the baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove and allow to cool. Coarsely chop the onion. Put the onion and garlic in a food processor and pulse. Add the lemon juice and zest and pulse. Add egg yolks and pulse until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly add the remaining oil and pulse until smooth. Pour the aioli into bowl, cover and refrigerate until serving.

Combine the herbs, scallions and jalapeno in a food processor and pulse. Add the mayonnaise and anchovy paste and pulse. Season with pepper. In a large bowl thoroughly mix the herbed mayonnaise with the ground turkey. Form into 6 1/3-pound patties.

Heat grill for medium direct cooking. Cook the burgers for 5 minutes, rotating 90 degrees halfway through to enhance grill marks. Flip and grill for another 4 minutes for medium doneness. Serve on grilled buns topped with the Red Onion Aioli.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Greek Chicken Pizza with Olive Tapenade

Greek Chicken Pizza with Olive Tapenade is built off of a par-baked mozzarella-sprinkled flatbread and finished with a tzatziki sauce, a garlicky Kalamata olive tapenade, slices of chicken and pepper slices. This recipe was inspired by my son, Nolan, and his Greek Chicken Pizza on a Pita.

IMG_5978

Greek Chicken Pizza with Olive Tapenade
(Mark Kelly, 2015)

Makes 4 12-inch Pizzas

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Greek Seasoning (such as Cavender’s All-Purpose)
Extra-virgin olive oil

Pizza dough (See previous Ample Bites post “Best Pizza Dough”)

16 oz. plain greek yogurt
4 oz. light sour cream
Greek Seasoning
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 Tbsp coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 Tbsp coarsely chopped fresh basil
2 Tbsp finely grated parmesan cheese

1 14-ounce jar kalamata olives, drained and coarsely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
Extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Freshly ground black pepper

1 large red pepper, stemmed, seeded, quartered and sliced
1 small green pepper, stemmed, seeded, quartered and sliced
8 oz. creamy plain goat cheese
12 oz. shredded mozzarella
2 Tbsp coarsely chopped fresh basil

Extra-virgin olive oil for brushing crusts and for drizzling

To prepare the chicken breasts: About 30 minutes before cooking the chicken season all sides with Greek seasoning and let sit at room temperature. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Cook the chicken uncovered for about 5 minutes, or until a good sear is made. Turn the chicken over and cook for another 5 minutes over medium-low heat. Turn the heat to low and cover with a large pan lid and cook for another 5 minutes or until internal temperature reads 160F. Remove an allow to rest. Slice the chicken just before baking the pizzas.

To prepare the Tzatziki Sauce: Combine the yogurt, sour cream, 1 tablespoon Greek seasoning, lemon juice, parsley, basil and grated parmesan. Mix thoroughly. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to develop.

To prepare the Olive Tapenade: Combine the olives, garlic, and parsley in a food processor with a few dashes of oil and black pepper to taste. Pulse until nicely chopped but not smooth. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to develop.

Pulse the shredded mozzarella and remaining fresh basil in a food processor until nearly smooth. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 500F for baking with baking stone or steel in the oven as it warms. Roll out a quarter of the pizza dough on a flour-coated board. Brush with oil from edge-to-edge sprinkle with a quarter of the basil-mozzeralla mix. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove to a warm oven and repeat with the remaining dough.

With each cooked dough, spread a quarter of the tzatziki sauce, top with chicken slices, olive tapenade, goat cheese, and peppers. Bake for 5 minutes more until the goat cheese melts and the vegetables warm and soften. Let stand for 5 minutes before slicing.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Chicken and Shiitake Tsukune

Chicken and Shiitake Tsukune is a yakitori. The chicken is in the form of a sausage that is seasoned with finely chopped green onion and cilantro. The chicken sausages and skewers of shiitake mushroom caps are grilled and glazed with a sweet and savory sticky sauce called a tare.

IMG_5958

Chicken and Shiitake Tsukune
(Mark Kelly, 2015)

Serves 2 to 4

6 Tbsp granulated sugar
6 Tbsp mirin
6 Tbsp lower-sodium soy sauce
6 Tbsp sake
20 oz. ground chicken
4 scallions, white part only, minced
2 Tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
2 Tbsp sake
2 tsp rice starch
1/2 tsp kosher salt
16 oz. shiitake mushrooms, caps only
Canola oil for frying

To make the yakitori tare, combine the sugar, mirin, soy sauce and sake in a saucepan over medium heat. Continue to boil until the sauce becomes thick. The sauce will be finished when the bubbles go from small to large and glossy.

Put the ground chicken in a large bowl and gently break it apart. In a small bowl combine the scallions, cilantro, sake and rice starch. Mix to combine. Add the mixture to the chicken and combine thoroughly. Form the chicken mixture into 8 to 10 sausage logs about 1-inch in diameter. Refrigerate for at least an hour before cooking.

Heat a Dutch oven over medium heat and add enough oil to coat the bottom of the vessel. Fry the sausage logs on each side until just golden brown. Run a bamboos skewer through each before grilling to allow for easier handling.

Heat grill to medium-low for direct grilling. Place the sausage logs in a loose foil wrap to that they do not burn as they cook to an internal temp of 160F. Brush the sausage logs with plenty of tare and return them to the grill, again on foil, to allow the glaze to caramelize. During this step add the shiitakes and glaze them as well.

Serve with rice and an Asian Slaw with extra tare on the side.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Feta and Basil-Stuffed Lamb Burgers

Feta and Basil-Stuffed Lamb Burgers are juicy and flavorful with a pocket of gooey feta cheese embedded in the center. Topped with caramelized onions and a fresh basil leaf this sandwich is a crowd-pleaser.

IMG_5898

IMG_5887

IMG_5885

Feta and Basil-Stuffed Lamb Burgers
(Mark Kelly, 2015)

Serves 4 to 6 depending on the size of the patties

1 1/2 lbs ground lamb
6 oz feta, crumbled
6 large fresh basil leaves, chopped
1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
Kosher salt
Freshly ground back pepper

Thoroughly combine the lamb, onion and basil. For each patty, form a ball and use your thumb to form a deep pocket in the middle of the ball. Press in a portion of the feta and close the pocket. Flatten the patty out and set aside on a baking sheet. Repeat until all patties are formed. Refrigerate until about 45 prior to grilling.

Heat grill for medium high direct cooking. For medium-rare doneness, grill for 4 – 6 minutes depending on the size of the patty. Flip and cook for an additional 3 – 5 minutes, again depending on the size of the patty. Serve on a toasted but a dollop of caramelized onions.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Linguine with Mushroom Ragu

Linguine with Mushroom Ragu is a rich, meatless pasta dish with flavor enhanced by fresh basil, parsley and Marsala wine. Serve this dish in a shallow bowl with warm, crusty bread to sop up the broth.

IMG_5876

Linguine with Mushroom Ragu
(Adapted from recipe courtesy of Everyday Italian by Giada De Laurentiis, 2005)

Serves 4

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 lbs mixed mushrooms (button, cremini, shiitake), stemmed and sliced
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups Marsala wine
4 cups lower-sodium chicken stock
1 1/3 cups freshly grated parmesan, plus more for garnish
8 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced crosswise, plus more for garnish
1/2 cup fresh parsley leaves, chopped

1 lb whole wheat linguine

In a large skillet heat the oil to a shimmer. Add the onions and garlic and soften them over medium heat, about 8 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook until juices are released and mostly evaporated. Add the Marsala and cook until it is mostly evaporated. Add the chicken broth and simmer for 30 minutes.

While the ragu is cooking, bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the directions on the packet.

Before serving remove from heat and stir in the parmesan, basil and parsley and stir until the cheese is melted and the broth is thickened.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2015
Print Friendly, PDF & Email