September 5, 2013

Grilled Lemon Chicken and Baked Zucchini Fries

Speaking of all things good and lemony, let's talk about this chicken for a second. I don't know what it is about lemon, but this marinade is probably one of the best I've ever had. It tastes so light and refreshing.
This was also our first time trying baked zucchini fries and we loved em! Baking is such a good, healthy way to eat your veggies. Don't forget to dip them in some ranch or marinara!

Grilled Lemon Chicken
4 medium lemons, cut into wedges
4 tsp. garlic, minced
2 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 tsp. dried basil
2 tsp. salt
3 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
                   
1. Gently squeeze lemons into a large Ziplock bag, leaving lemon wedges inside.
2. Add garlic, thyme, cayenne pepper, vegetable oil, basil and salt to Ziplock bag, close & shake.
3. Add chicken to Ziplock bag & turn to coat.
4. Seal bag & refrigerate for at least a ½ hour up to overnight.
5. Remove chicken and grill over medium heat until juices run clear.

Baked Zucchini Fries
1 lb. zucchini

1/2 c. Italian-seasoned panko bread crumbs (or regular bread crumbs)

1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese (the crumbly stuff, not shreds)

2 eggs

1. Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
2. Combine bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Set aside.
3. Whisk 2 eggs together in a shallow pie plate and set aside.
4. Cut the ends off the zucchini and then cut the zucchini in half so you have two short, stubby pieces. Set one piece on its end and cut it in half lengthwise. Cut that half in half, making 2 planks. Repeat with the remaining halves (so you’ll get 16 planks per zucchini).
5. Stack 2 planks on top of each other and cut into strips. Thicker strips will yield “meatier” fries with more zucchini flavor while thin strips will be crispy and taste virtually nothing like zucchini. When all the fries are cut, blot the pieces with a paper towel.
6. Working with a small handful at a time, dip the zucchini sticks in the egg, shake them to remove any excess, and then roll them in about 2-3 tablespoons of bread crumbs at a time, adding more as needed; (you just don’t want to work with all the bread crumbs at once because they’ll soak up moisture from the egg and won’t stick to the zucchini.) Place the coated strips on the prepared baking sheet and repeat until all the zucchini strips have been coated.
7. Bake for 10-12 minutes in the prepared oven then remove from oven, flip the fries, and bake for another 10-12 minutes or until the coating is crisp and golden brown.
8. Serve with ranch or marinara sauce.

September 3, 2013

Baked Lemon Pasta

This pasta you guys...is amazing. It's creamy, has the perfect amount of lemon flavor and is just plain good. I know lemon might sound weird mixed with pasta, but I've yet to find something lemon doesn't taste good with. It's refreshing and perfect for the end of summer.

Also, I got this recipe from The Pioneer Woman so you know it's bound to be good, right?

Baked Lemon Pasta
1 lb. thin spaghetti
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 tsp. garlic, minced
1 whole lemon, juiced and zested
2 cups sour cream
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
Parmesan cheese
Flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Extra lemon juice

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook spaghetti until al dente.
2. In a skillet, melt butter with olive oil over LOW HEAT. When butter is melted, add minced garlic. Squeeze lemon juice into the pan. Turn off heat.
3. Add sour cream and stir mixture together. Add lemon zest and salt. Taste, then add more salt if necessary. Pour mixture over drained spaghetti and stir together, then pour spaghetti into an oven safe dish.
4. Bake, covered, for 15 minutes.
5. When you remove it from the oven, squeeze a little more lemon juice over the top. Top generously with Parmesan cheese, then chopped parsley. Give it a final squeeze of lemon juice at the end.