The Family Recipe Book and Tonight's Dinner

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Hi Everyone!
This is just a short post to share with you about The Family Recipe Book and give you the recipe I cooked for dinner tonight. When I plan my dinners for the week I use a variety of sites including:

You have to be careful with these sites however because a lot of the recipes call for premade ingredients. I am not totally opposed to using some premade items, like a can of cream of mushroom for example, but I read labels religiously and if it contains anything "partially hydrogenated" or high fructose corn syrup, the recipe is out. Many times, however, recipes call for chicken stock, or jarred tomato sauce, which I make at home and freeze. It is very easy to make a huge pot of chicken stock or tomato sauce and freeze it in appropriate serving sizes, then you just pull it out of the freezer when you need it. If I find a recipe that I really like, and my family likes it, I add it to my Family Recipe Book. This is simply a three ring binder, divided into sections: appetizer, main dishes, soups and salads, sides, breads and desserts. I always change recipes to make them my own, so I always write the changes on the printed recipe and add it to the Family Recipe Book. Because I love to cook so much, we rarely eat the same thing two times in a month (except for pizza which we have once a week), so the Family Recipe Book is comprised of my family's absolute favorites. Some of my friends have started making a Family Recipe Book for their families too! Here is a recipe from my Family Recipe Book and I happened to make it tonight for dinner:

Pan Fried Chicken, Spinach, and Polenta with Tomato Coulis
1 pint grape tomatoes
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
2 tsp garlic powder
1 cup buttermilk
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves cut into strips or chunks
1 9 oz package fresh spinach
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. italian herbs
1/2 cup water
1 1/2 cup milk
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup dry white wine or chicken stock
salt and pepper to taste
3 tbsp olive oil

In a microwavable bowl, add the tomatoes and the brown sugar. Pierce the tomatoes and microwave for 3 minutes. Stir and set aside

In another bowl, add the buttermilk to the bowl and add 1 tsp of garlic powder and stir. Soak the chicken in the buttermilk for 15-30 minutes.

Combine the flour with the rest of the garlic powder and salt and pepper to your liking. Heat 3 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Dip chicken pieces in flour mixture and add to the skillet. Cook approximately 5 minutes per side or until chicken is no longer pink in the center (170 f). Remove to a plate.

While chicken is cooking, bring milk and water to a boil in a saucepan. Once boiling, add cornmeal whisking constantly and remove from heat. Continue to whisk until thickened. Add the italian herbs, butter and the parmesan and mix well.

When chicken is done, remove to a plate, add white wine or chicken stock to skillet to deglaze pan. Add the spinach and cook until wilted.

Serve chicken over a bed of polenta and spinach drizzled with tomato coulis. Yummm!

Until next time Foodie Mommies and Daddies, happy cooking!


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