Posts tagged: Oregano

Slow Cooked Apple and Onion Stuffed Chicken

Apple and Onion Stuffed Chicken with Bacon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Apple and Onion Stuffed Chicken with Bacon and Garlic Mashed Potatoes

When I first conceived this recipe, I was going to fry the chicken in butter for about 4-5 minutes a side. However, I had purchased a new slow cooker and was looking for an interesting way to use it. It was suggested that I do a stuffed chicken recipe. Serendipity at its best. I already had all of the ingredients.  So below you will find the altered recipe. The slow cooker gave me plenty of time to relax and fix a side dish of bacon and garlic mashed potatoes, and Bananas Foster for dessert.

Ingredients:

  • 8 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 Green Apple, diced (Granny Smith recommended)
  • 1 Small Red Onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons Oregano
  • 2 Pieces of bread, toasted, (you can substitute 3/4 cup store bought bread crumbs)
  • 8-10 ounces diced Tomato
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 cup Chicken Broth
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed or quartered
  • 1 tablespoon dried Oregano

Directions:

Pounding Chicken Thighs

Pounding Chicken Thighs

Between two pieces of plastic wrap, unroll and pound flat chicken thighs.

Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and apple and cook 6-8 minutes until onion is translucent and apples are slightly softened. Cut toasted bread in to small chunks and add to onions and apples. Add 1-2 teaspoons of salt an pepper. Stir until well mixed then add diced tomatoes. Continue stirring, then remove from heat and cool for a few minutes.

Stuffed Chicken in Slow Cooker

Stuffed Chicken in Slow Cooker

Place a spoon full or more of the onion/apple mixture on each thigh and secure with toothpicks. Place each rolled thigh in a slow cooker. Pour remaining mixture over thighs and add chicken broth and garlic. Sprinkle in salt and pepper to taste (1-2 teaspoons). Start cooker and cook on high for 2 1/2 hours. In the last 15 minutes of cooking add oregano.

Finished Product Ready to Slow Cook

Finished Product Ready to Slow Cook

Serve by plating Stuffed Chicken first then topping with remaining mix. The left over cooking juice can be used as a gravy or additional sauce for the chicken.

Italian Sausage Faux Risotto

Some may not consider this a real risotto but it’s close.  All of the ingredients are there but the exact preparation is not quite true to a traditional risotto. In this recipe the fat comes from the sausage, the wine is added at the end rather than the beginning, and the Romano is not stirred in. In any case, it’s a very tasty dish.

Italian Sausage Risotto

Italian Sausage Risotto

In a traditional risotto, the rice is cooked briefly in butter or olive oil to coat the grains with fat. White wine is added and absorbed by the grains. When the wine evaporates, the heat is raised to medium high and hot stock is gradually added in small amounts while stirring gently, almost constantly.  Stirring loosens the starch molecules from the outside of the rice grains into the surrounding liquid, creating a smooth creamy-textured liquid. At about 17 minutes from when the wine evaporated,  take the rice off the heat and dice cold butter and finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese.  Whip in the cheese and butter to make the texture as creamy and smooth as possible.

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb mild Italian sausage or hot Italian sausage, (2-3 links) casing removed
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 chopped onion, red preferred
  • 1 bell pepper, rough chop
  • 2 Anaheim peppers, rough chop
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups arborio rice
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 chopped tomato
  • 1/4 cup grated Romano cheese

Directions:

In a large frying pan, cook sausage over medium-high heat, breaking into small pieces, approximately 4 minutes or until browned. Add garlic, onion, bell pepper, Anaheim peppers, oregano, salt and pepper. Continue to cook over medium heat, stirring often, approximately 3 minutes or until the vegetables are softened. Add rice and mix well. Add chicken stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring once. Add white wine, stirring often and simmer approximately 5 minutes or until rice is tender and creamy. Stir in tomato. Top with Romano cheese and serve immediately.

Italian Sausage Meat Sauce

Fucilli tossed with Meat Sauce and garnished with Grated Romano Cheese

Fucilli tossed with Meat Sauce and garnished with Grated Romano Cheese

Any pasta can be used with this meat sauce which is also known as a bolognese.  I normally use Fusilli because the meat sauce clings to it easily. I serve this meal in a bowl with a spoon and top it with fresh grated Parmesan or Romano cheese.

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, medium chop
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper diced (red preferred)
  • 2 tomatoes diced (approximately 1 3/4 lbs)
  • 1 lb Italian sausage, removed from casing
  • 8 ounce can of tomato sauce
  • 6 ounce can of tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 4 1/2 ounce can mushrooms, drained
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seed

Directions:

Meat Sauce

Meat Sauce

In a large pot heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and saute until semi soft being careful not to burn them. Add Italian sausage and cook until browned. Drain sausage.

In pot with drained sausage, stir in diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato paste. Mix in oregano, basil, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, red pepper flakes, mushrooms, cumin, fennel seed, and bay leaf.  Bring to a boil. Turn heat down to low and simmer for about 1-2 hours, stirring every 10 to 15 minutes.

A Little Bit of Everything

The basis of this dish comes from my mom – “Mother Unit”. It was one of the first dishes I asked her to teach me. I’ve taken it and tweaked it over the years. If you are looking for an easy but filling comfort food meal, this is as good a place to start as any.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb Ground Beef 95% lean or better
  • 1/2 lb Ground Pork
  • 1/2 lb Ground Lamb
  • 1/2 lb Ground Bison
  • 1/2 Red onion
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper
  • 1 Yellow Bell Pepper
  • 2 large Jalapenos
  • 2 Carrots
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon basil
  • 2 10 oz cans of Cream of Mushroom
  • 3 lbs Red Potatoes “C” size
  • 2 tablespoons Kosher Salt
  • 4 tablespoons Fresh Ground Pepper
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 to 1 cup milk
  • Shredded Mozzarella

Directions:

Meat and vegetable mixture

Meat and vegetable mixture

Start by cutting the potatoes into 1/4″ to 1/2″ cubes. Added these to a large pot with water and boil for 45 minutes. The rest of the dish can be prepared while the potatoes boil. Chop the bell peppers and onion into 1/4″ to 1/2″ sized pieces. Cut and de-seed the jalapenos and  into 1/4″ to 1/2″ sized pieces. Peel the carrots and slice into small slices. In a seperate, small sauce pan, blanch the carrots for 3-5 minutes. In a large pan, I use a Paella pan, add the olive oil over a medium-high heat. Add carrots, onions, bell peppers and jalapenos and saute for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the beef, pork, bison, lamb, in that order separating and stirring in each for 1 to minutes before adding the next. Once all meat has been added, add 2 tablespoons of salt and pepper and one tablespoon of oregano and basil. Continue stirring and mixing until all of the  meat has been browned. Add the two cans of cream of mushroom and thoroughly mix. Let stand on heat for approximately 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove to deep casserole dishes, (I have to use 2). The casserole dishes should be filled approximately 1 1/2″  deep.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. After the potatoes have been boiled, drain and add butter cut into small pieces, 2 tablespoons of fresh ground pepper, and 1/2 cup milk. After the butter is mostly melted, use a hand mixer to mix the potatoes, add milk as necessary. Remember you can always add milk but can never take it away. I always mix in an empty sink as the hand mixer may spray some potatoes out of the pot.

Layer the top of the meat and vegetable mixture with an even layer of the mashed potatoes. Top with a layer of  Mozzarella cheese, and place in oven for 5 minutes or until cheese has melted. Remove from oven and serve.

Variations:

When fresh English Peas are in season, I will add a cup when I add the meat.

Basil and Oregano Roasted Red Potatoes

Great side for beef or pork dishes. Easy to make and very tasty.

Ingredients:

1 lb C size, Red Potatoes (approximately 16)
1 tablespoon basil
1 tablespoon oregano
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon course ground pepper
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Directions:

Black Tip Shark with Mango/Habanero Chutney with Basil/Oregano Roasted Red Potatoes

Black Tip Shark with Mango/Habanero Chutney with Basil/Oregano Roasted Red Potatoes

Cut potatoes into 1/8th’s for pieces about 1/2 inch. Bring a pot of water to boil and add potatoes. Boil for 5-10 minutes until the potatoes soften enough to be moderately easy to spear with a fork.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a glad Ziploc bag (or similar) Add basil, oregano, salt, pepper, cayenne and olive oil. Drain potatoes and wash with cold water to cool. Add potatoes to Ziploc bag and shake vigorously for 30 seconds or potatoes are fully coated.

In a 9×13 Pyrex casserole dish, lightly coat with cooking spray and add potatoes from Ziploc and spread evenly. Bake potatoes in oven for 20-30 minutes. Remove from oven and serve.

Variations:

Of course and spice or seasoning can be added to the mix. I have used the pre-made potato topping mixes. I have also used various vinaigrette salad dressings. As always experimentation is encouraged.

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