Tag Archives: leftovers

Chicken Rolls with Asparagus and Mozzarella

The other day I walked into Fairway and right in front of me were these petite asparagus spears – they looked perfect for the chicken rolls that were dancing around in my head and with that, an impromptu recipe was born.  After picking up some thin chicken cutlets, I was ready to cook – I had everything else at home, making this an easy weeknight recipe that takes little thought, effort, or preparation.

CHICKEN ROLLS WITH ASPARAGUS AND MOZZARELLA

Ingredients

  • 4 chicken cutlets, pounded thin and evenly
  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • non-stick cooking spray
  • salt and pepper, for seasoning meat
  • whole wheat bread crumbs

    Chicken rolls w/ asparagus and mozzarella!

Directions

  1. Sautee asparagus in olive oil until bright green. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  3. Spray a baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  4. Pat chicken dry and lightly season with salt and pepper.
  5. Lay out chicken breast, arrange asparagus on top, and sprinkle with mozzarella.
  6. Roll chicken around asparagus and cheese; place seam down in baking dish.
  7. Repeat with remaining chicken breasts.
  8. Sprinkle whole wheat bread crumbs on top of chicken.
  9. Cook for approximately 25-30 mins* or until chicken registers 160/165 degrees with a meat thermometer.

That’s it – veggies plus protein in one fell swoop and a nice way to switch up chicken and vegetables! I suggest serving this with brown rice or cous-cous as a side to round out a nicely balanced meal that makes for a yummy, crowd-pleasing dinner and great leftovers.

This is also a solid base recipe – you could switch out asparagus for mushrooms or another veggie, use a different type of cheese, or even make mini flank steak roll-ups using the same concepts. Happy eating!

*October 31, 2012 update: It might take a little longer than 10 minutes to cook your chicken depending on the strength of your oven, size of cutlets, etc. Never consume raw or undercooked meat – always rely on a good meat thermometer to let you know when food is done!

*November 11, 2013 update: OK, OK, I have heard you all loud and clear – I changed the cooking time from 10 mins – I must have a magical oven or be totally inept at keeping time. Originally, I only cooked these for about 10 mins but the cutlets I used were really, really, really thin. So don’t eat raw meat, cook it long enough, and plan ahead accordingly.

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Zucchini Lasagna

I love lasagna! I especially love cleaned-up takes on the tradtionally high-cal favorite. My friend Alyson passed along this zucchini lasagna recipe and I couldn’t wait to try it. I was also pretty excited to make use of another wedding gift, a mandolin slicer, to prep the zucchini.
 
I should mention here that I have a tendancy to trip, stumble, and klutz my way through each day and I was a bit worried about facing the mandolin. After sizing it up, I felt pretty confident and preemptively told myself, “You can even blog about how you mastered this new kitchen tool, accident-free!” 
 
Cut to 10 minutes later when my hand slipped, the safety fell off, and I sliced through my fingertip. Cooper jumped up to my rescue, barking in response to my reactions but there wasn’t much he could do for me. These types of things tend to happen when Chris, a firefighter and EMT, is at work (helping people who’ve had accidents… like myself). I needed his professional opinion so we had a Facetime call (thank goodness for the iPhone!) and he concluded that I was going to be just fine. At his suggestion, I got some gauze, sat down, and took a break.
 
Soon enough, I got back up and running with my newly bandaged finger. I adapted this recipe a bit on the fly, adding chopped spinach in the cottage cheese mixture for an added health boost. Tip: to prevent a soupy lasagna, dry out the zucchini before baking by salting them and waiting for 10 minutes. You will see the moisture “sweat” out. Once you soak up the extra water, you’re good to go!

Zucchini Lasagna

Zucchini Lasagna

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced into ¼” thick pieces
  • 10 oz. ground chicken
  • 1 24 oz. jar of low-fat, low-sodium tomato sauce
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups low-fat, low-sodium cottage cheese
  • 1 tsp. whole wheat flour
  • 1 package of chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • ½ cup finely shredded 2%, low-sodium mozzarella cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. In a large frying pan or dutch oven, saute onion and garlic in olive oil over medium heat until tender.
  3. Add tomato sauce and ground meat, and bring all ingredients to consistent heat for 10 minutes (or until browned). Season with salt & pepper, to taste. Remove from heat.

  4. While meat sauce is cooking, salt the zucchini to remove excess moisture. Soak up excess beads of moisture after 10 minutes.

    Salted zucchini "sweating" out beads of mositure

  5. In a small bowl, slightly beat the egg. Stir in cottage cheese, flour, spinach, and ¼ cup mozzarella cheese.
  6. Pour ½ tomato sauce into a 13×9 baking dish. Top with a layer of zucchini slices, followed by a layer of cottage cheese mixture.
  7. Cover with the remaining tomato sauce and top with zucchini.
  8. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes.

  9. Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese and bake 10 minutes longer.
  10. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

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