Thursday, February 7, 2013

They Ate it All!

Sometimes kids (my son) are picky, but sometimes they really surprise you.  I never know when my son will eat what I cook.  But last night he devoured this meal, along with the rest of my family.  I made eight pieces of corn on the cob, and they ate it all.  And all of the Roasted Potato Rounds.  Seriously, I made an entire sheet pan of the potatoes, and they are gone.  (I ate only two slices, by the way.)  And the chicken, while it has a fancy-pants name, it's really pretty easy and darn tasty...Chicken Cordon Bleu.  My son said it was the best chicken he's ever tasted.

Chicken Cordon Bleu was traditionally made with veal, stuffed, breaded and fried.  But this is the version I prefer.  It's still stuffed with ham and cheese (I chose Swiss), but I didn't bread it and fry it.  Instead I browned it and removed it from the pan.  I then made a mushroom sauce in the same pan, returned the chicken to the pan, and finished cooking the chicken in the sauce.  The result is rather tasty and tender chicken.  If you don't like Swiss, pick another slice of easy melting cheese.  And, for the ham, use whatever you like, even proscuitto.  I just used plain-old deli sliced ham.  And I secure my chicken breasts with toothpicks.  I ALWAYS use three toothpicks so that I know exactly how many are in there and I can warn whoever is eating the chicken to find the three toothpicks before eating.

Anyhoo, here's the recipes.  See if your kid (or kids) love it as much as mine did!

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 onion, chopped
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 slices deli ham
4 slices Swiss cheese
1/2 C white wine
2 C chicken stock
1/4 C butter
1/4 C flour
2 T olive oil
12 toothpicks

To butterfly the chicken breasts, place them on a board and put the fattest lengthwise part towards your knife.  Gently cut a line through the chicken, peeling back as you go, without going through the bottom.  (Don't worry.  Google a YouTube video on it if you're unsure.)  Place the chicken in a large zipper bag and pound the chicken breasts thin with a small pot. 

Place one slice of ham and one slice of Swiss cheese (fold over on itself twice) on the inside of the chicken breast.  Slightly fold the ham over the cheese.  Using three toothpicks per chicken breast, secure the edges of the chicken together, making sure no ham is showing through.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, melt the butter and the olive oil together.  Place the chicken breasts in and brown one side.  Turn over and brown the other side.  Remove to a plate.  Add the mushrooms and onions to the same skillet and cook until tender.  Add in wine and deglaze the pan.  (That just means scraping up any brown goodness on the bottom of the pan.)  Cook about 1 minute to reduce.  Whisk in the flour.  Add in the chicken stock and garlic and whisk to combine.  When it's bubbling, turn the heat down to medium and return your chicken breasts to the skillet.  Cover and cook about 10 minutes or until chicken is done. 

**Don't forget to warn your eaters about removing the three toothpicks!

5 russet potatoes, thick sliced
4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (very slightly undercooked)
1 T garlic powder
1 T onion powder
1 T dried parsley
1/2 to 1 C colby jack cheese, shredded
Olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Place potatoes in a single layer on a sheet pan.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle seasonings over them.  Turn them over and repeat.  Bake 30 minutes or until tender.

Sprinkle the shredded cheese and bacon over the tops.  Return to oven and cook about 5 minutes to melt the cheese.

8 frozen half ears of corn
1 8 ounce package of cream cheese
1/2 stick butter
1-3 teaspoons Cajun seasoning (or seasoned salt)
8 pieces of foil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Put cream cheese and butter in a microwaveable bowl and heat until butter is melted.  Add in the Cajun seasoning and whisk together.  Brush the cream cheese mixture on each piece of corn.  Wrap in foil and place on a cookie sheet.  Cook about 20 minutes or until corn is tender.

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