Italian Herb Chicken with Broccoli

I’ve become a little bit of a fan of the Land O’ Lakes Saute Express seasonings. I’ve made the Italian Herb before, but this time I decided to change things up a little.

So I decided to add some broccoli to the pan and I sauteed it up with the chicken. I’ve been tolerating plain broccoli florets for a while now so I hoped that adding them to the seasoning would give them a little more flavor.

Italian Herb Chicken and Broccoli

The broccoli certainly did get cooked in well with the chicken. I do think I may have added it too soon though. The broccoli got a little too soft.

Italian Herb Chicken and Broccoli with Noodles

I topped it all off with a little pasta and Parmesan cheese. It made for a great meal with some much needed greens. The broccoli was a bit too mushy, but it was a little more flavorful than usual. Perhaps it would be better to say it hid the broccoli flavor better. Either way, it gave me another way to eat broccoli.

 

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Spicy Honey-Brushed Chicken Thighs Recipe

My wife has often commented on how we should cook chicken thighs since they are generally much cheaper than chicken breast. I tended to think they probably weren’t very good if they were so cheap – besides, they are kind of small too. Well, she found a recipe that changed my mind about them even though the recipe does include garlic powder.

Spicy Honey Brushed Chicken Thighs

I’m including the recipe as it was listed. However, we did stray from it a little.

Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • Cooking spray
  • 6 tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar

Directions:

  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Add chicken to bowl; toss to coat.
  4. Place chicken on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray.
  5. Broil chicken 5 minutes on each side.
  6. Combine honey and vinegar in a small bowl, stirring well.
  7. Remove chicken from oven; brush 1/4 cup honey mixture on chicken. Broil 1 minute. Remove chicken from oven and turn over.
  8. Brush chicken with remaining honey mixture. Broil 1 additional minute or until chicken is done.

We couldn’t find boneless chicken thighs so we got them with the bone. That was both good and bad. The good thing about the thighs with bone is that they are a bit bigger. I’m not sure if there actually is more meat on them than if we used boneless, but it gives the appearance of more. On the other hand, they seemed to take a lot longer to cook than the recipe calls for. They say 5 minutes  per side, then brush with honey and do one or two more minutes per side. I think we ended up cooking them around 10 minutes per side.

Spicy Honey Brushed Chicken Thighs - Plated

Regardless of how long they may have taken to cook, I must say they were absolutely delicious. I would never have guessed they were made with garlic powder if I hadn’t read the recipe. The honey made them nice and sweet and the red pepper gave them some kick.

With this recipe, my opinion of chicken thighs has been changed forever. It definitely meets with this fussy eater’s approval.

via Spicy Honey-Brushed Chicken Thighs Recipe | MyRecipes.com.

Land O’ Lakes Saute Express – Lemon Pepper Chicken

Land O' Lakes Saute Express - Lemon Pepper

We finally had a chance to try the Lemon Pepper variety of the Land O’ Lakes Saute Express seasoning. As with the Italian Herb, it is a mix of butter, olive oil, and seasonings. Simply melt it in the pan and saute the chicken until done. It’s a great way to create a tasty meal with little effort. Perhaps I shouldn’t have said tasty though, since it got mixed reviews from my wife and I.

Land O' Lakes Saute Express - Lemon Pepper ChickenBelieve it or not, Linda was the one who didn’t care for it. She thought it was too lemony for her taste. Personally, I thought it had a nice lemon kick to it. I do think that it would be wise to pick the proper side dish to complement the chicken. We had  yellow rice. I’m not sure it really went well with the lemon. The chicken had a pretty strong lemon flavor so I’m not sure what would work best as a side dish. Any ideas?

Land O’ Lakes Saute Express – Italian Herb Chicken

While Linda was out of town, I opted for a lot for easy to prepare meals. I made Kraft Fresh Take chicken, burgers, and (I hate to admit it) even hot dogs and beans. Another easy meal I made was from a simple seasoning and butter combination – Land O’ Lakes Saute Express. It’s a simple premise. You probably already saute with either butter or oil and then add seasonings to it. Why not just do it all at once? That’s just what Land O’ Lakes has done.

Land O Lakes Saute Express Italian HerbWe picked up two varieties a while back – the Italian Herb and the Lemon Pepper. I haven’t had a chance to make the Lemon Pepper yet, so expect to see an entry about it at some point in the near future.

These couldn’t be much easier to use. Simply melt a pack in the pan and add the chicken to it. I prefer to cut up the chicken into nice bite sized pieces, but you could leave it whole if you prefer. Then just saute until the chicken gets golden brown.

Land O Lakes Saute Express ChickenI found this to be a pretty quick and easy way to saute up some chicken. However, the real test in in the taste. It doesn’t matter how quick and easy it is if it doesn’t pass the taste test. I’m glad to say that it does meet with this fussy eater’s approval. I look forward to trying the Lemon Pepper variety.

Kraft Fresh Take Southwest Three Cheese Chicken

Fortunately, Linda is now home after having been out of town taking care of her mother. While she was gone, our youngest daughter and I were left to fend for ourselves. Since we had some of the Kraft Fresh Take recipes on hand, I decided to let her try the Cheddar Jack & Bacon (which I made before with Linda) and also the Southwest Three Cheese, which was new to both of us. Needless to say, I made them on separate nights. Since I’ve already written about the Cheddar Jack & Bacon, I’m only going to cover the Southwest Three Cheese today.

Kraft Fresh Take - Southwest Three CheeseAs with the Cheddar Jack & Bacon, this was a very easy dish to prepare. These Kraft dishes remind me a lot of the old Shake-n-Bake. Simply open the bag, separate the two sides and mix. Then add your chicken and mix again. It doesn’t get much easier than that.

Kraft Fresh Take - Southwest Three Cheese - Ready to bakeOnce you’ve coated the chicken, I suggest adding a little more on top once they are in the pan. Then pop it in the oven at 375 for about 30 minutes. That’s all there is to it.

Kraft Fresh Take - Southwest Three Cheese - Ready to serveAs with the Cheddar Jack & Bacon, the outside gets just a little crispy from the cheese. As I mentioned in that post, don’t flip the chicken halfway through the cooking. It might seem like a good idea, but it looks a lot better if you don’t. Either way they still cook completely so why not make something eye catching and appealing.

Kraft  Fresh Take - Southwest Three Cheese - PlatedI chose to serve the chicken with a side of fries and Ketchup. Kate considered a little hot sauce to go with hers but opted not to so she could see how they were. We both really enjoyed them. I must admit I had a small bit of concern over seeing garlic listed in the ingredients, but I didn’t let that get the better of me. I couldn’t taste the garlic at all.

So far, I’m pretty impressed with the Kraft Fresh Take meals. They are very easy to make and taste great. I think we still have a few varieties to try though including Rosemary & Roasted Garlic. That one will be interesting.

Kraft Fresh Take Cheddar Jack & Bacon Chicken

Cheddar Jack & Bacon Chicken - Kraft

Linda recently picked up several Kraft Fresh Take chicken seasonings. The Cheddar Jack & Bacon was the first one we tried. The whole concept is kind of interesting. It comes with a large seasoning bag that is sealed at the top and has a seal between the two sides. One side contained the cheddar jack cheese bits and the other had the bacon bits. One side also contains bread crumbs, but I can’t remember which. Anyway, you open the seal between the two sides and mix it up. Then add your chicken and mix it up.

Cheddar Jack & Bacon Chicken - Ready to BakeOnce the chicken has been seasoned, you bake it at 375 for approximately 28-30 minutes (assuming boneless chicken, which is what I used). At first I thought it would be a good idea to turn the chicken halfway through the cooking time, but it really isn’t necessary and definitely affects how it looks. If you don’t turn them they come out much better looking. Either way they still come out fully cooked.

Cheddar Jack & Bacon Chicken - ServedAbove is one of the better looking pieces. It comes out with a little bit of a crispy texture, but not entirely. It’s a little hard to describe. The combination of chicken, cheese, and bacon was new to me, but it was really quite good. We picked up a few more varieties to try as well.

If you are looking for a quick and easy way to make something other than that same old boring chicken, then I’d give this a try. It meets with this fussy eater’s approval and I’m sure your fussy eaters will enjoy it too.

Chicken Piccata Recipe

The other day we had some company over (our daughter’s friend we hadn’t seen in years) and my wife decided to make a special meal. She wanted to make chicken piccata, but neither of us likes capers which are common in most recipes for it. She did a little searching around and finally found a recipe that didn’t call for them. Sure, we probably could have used one with capers and just left them out, but this one looked pretty good so she decided to run with it.

Chicken Piccata - Cooking

 

We mixed up all the ingredients and cooked it it our largest skillet. It had a really nice lemony smell to it. They browned up quite nicely too. They looked almost as good as the pictures in the recipe.

Chicken Piccata - Ready to Serve

 

As we got closer to serving them, our daughter’s boyfriend suggested that we take lemon slices and put them on top and let them cook down into the chicken. It seemed like a great idea so we went with it.

Chicken Piccata - Plated

 

We served the chicken in the dish, but left the lemon slices behind when serving it up. Along with the chicken, my wife also made some pasta and some toasted bread with mozzarella cheese. Everyone else had garlic on their bread. I have learned that I can deal with a little garlic powder in a recipe, but I am still a LONG way from eating garlic bread.

The chicken piccata went over very well. We had six people for dinner that night but cooked for 8. Linda and I had the leftovers today and they were still delicious. We heated them up in a skillet and I added a small amount of lemon juice to the leftover sauce that we kept with the chicken. The leftovers were just as good the the day we made them.

The only change I might suggest is to add more lemon juice to the recipe. The breading had a definite lemon taste, but the chicken itself could possibly have used a little more. Feel free to make any changes you want to the recipe shown below and let me know how it works out.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 teaspoons chicken bouillon powder
  • 1/2 cup boiling water

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a small bowl, beat the egg together with 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice. Set aside.
  2. In a shallow bowl or dish mix together the flour, garlic powder and paprika. Dip the chicken in the egg/lemon mixture, then in the seasoned flour.
  3. In a large skillet, melt butter/margarine and brown the coated chicken pieces.
  4. Dissolve the bouillon in the boiling water, then add the remaining 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Pour liquid into skillet. Cover and let simmer for 20 minutes, turning chicken pieces after 10 minutes, until chicken is tender. Garnish as desired and serve.
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