A beautiful plate of sliced tomatoes, Buffalo mozzarella and fresh basil drizzled with a rich balsamic reduction was always a mainstay on our Italian table growing up. You have come to know and love it as Caprese or Insalata Caprese. (Have you ever noticed that this dish reflects the colors of the Italian flag?) Besides being a delicious and light salad or appetizer, Caprese is as versatile as a dish gets. So much so, that you’ll now find it in many variations and combinations with other foods. The Marinated Chicken Caprese is the perfect example and is sure to be a new favorite for you and your family! You can make the pesto and balsamic reduction from scratch or use store bought. The Chicken Caprese also answers that age-old pesky question; How can I come up with new ways to cook Chicken? Well, maybe I can help you at least for this week!
extra virgin olive oil
Julia Child made it fancy. Boeuf Bourguignon. But there’s something I’d like you to know. It’s just stew. Delicious, delectable, savory and oh, so satisfying. But, it’s still just stew. So please don’t let fancy French words intimidate you. Get your Dutch oven out and make this classic comfort food while the weather is still a little cool. Oh, and Bon Appétit!
I’ve always thought that we have certain flexibility with our choices for lunch and dinner. But breakfast? That’s a whole different story. If you’re a bacon person, you’re never going to order sausage. If you love your eggs over easy, then scrambled just won’t do. I think it’s safe to say that breakfast our way is non-negotiable. The same thing may be true with salad and salad dressing. If Italian vinaigrette is your choice, then a green goddess dressing is just not going to satisfy. The other issue with salad is, well, it’s generally thought of as the obligatory side to your entrée. That all changes here, with this mega main meal bonanza of goodness, flavor and crunch with a surprisingly bright, and full-bodied Cilantro Lime dressing! Wow, do I love this salad! I love everything about it; the fixings and the fact that it’s the main event! You can start with any lettuce you like. My choice is a combination of healthful greens like a Spring Mix and a crunchy chopped bag salad that is so readily available these days. This recipe has grilled chicken, but it’s fantastic with strips of steak of you’re a beef eater. I’m hoping this salad and the delicious dressing has everything you love and then some. If not, add your favorite fixings and make it a main meal to remember! After a week of Valentine’s cookies and chocolates and candy, I could use an entrée like this! How about you?
Watch my How To Video for Main Meal Salad with Cilantro Lime Dressing here!
Bacon. It’s my favorite five letter word! In fact, when I was doing a lot of catering, bacon was my secret weapon. If it was a breakfast catering, I would make three times the amount requested, and it was never enough. For a lunch or dinner catering, I would make beer candied bacon as an appetizer and just pile it on a giant platter. Again, every crumb gobbled up. Never enough. Don’t know what to make for breakfast, lunch or dinner? Just add bacon somewhere in the dish, and you can bet it’ll be a hit. Here’s another idea that’ll get your taste buds sizzling—Bacon Jam. Just seeing those two words together, I knew it was going to be delicious, and I was not disappointed. Bacon Jam can be used in so many ways! It’s fantastic on a charcuterie board with lots of different cheeses, crackers and crustini. Bacon Jam also makes a wonderful condiment for a turkey burger! I cooked up a large ground turkey pattie, (beef is just as tasty) loaded it up with sliced tomato, lettuce, avocado, blue cheese dressing and then I slathered the pattie with bacon jam. YUM! It turned a very ordinary turkey burger into a super burger! A few things have to go right to get the perfect bacon jam. Cook the pieces of bacon until they are crispy. When the bacon foams up (that’s the bacon fat talking) that is a good indication that the bacon is just about done! Also, make sure to use sweet yellow onions, which add the natural sweetness to the salty bacon! Perfect combination! So, if bacon is your jam, Bacon Jam may be just the recipe to spread around!
Watch my How To Video for Bacon Jam here!