Honey Mustard Chicken with Crispy Bacon

Who doesn’t love a great piece of chicken, crispy bacon coupled with creamy sharp cheddar cheese. As you know I love taking ingredients we use everyday in the kitchen and create something fresh, new, and absolutely delicious! Juicy chicken thighs and a tangy honey mustard marinade will make this recipe a keeper for your family! Let’s get started!

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Ingredients:

Marinade-

Chicken-

  • 4 chicken thighs, boneless and skinless
  • 8 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil
  • 1 ½ C. mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp salted butter
  • 2 C. cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 tsp. paprika
  • Salt, to taste
  • Fresh cracked pepper, to taste
  • 2 tsp. fresh parsley, chopped

 

Directions:

  1. Combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl and whip until blended, about 30 seconds.
  2. Place the chicken thighs in a zip lock bag and pour 2/3 of the marinade over the meat, seal and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  3. Place the remaining marinade in a container and place in the refrigerator.
  4. Remove from the chicken from the marinade solution and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  5. Place an oven proof skillet on the stove top and heat 1 Tbsp of canola oil over medium high heat.
  6. Sear the chicken in the pan until golden brown on each side, 4 minutes each depending on heat.
  7. Remove the PAN from the heat and brush the chicken thighs with the RESERVED  honey mustard marinade.
  8. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and paprika.
  9. In a separate pan, heat 2 Tbsp of butter and sauté the sliced mushrooms.
  10. Top each chicken thigh with equal portions crumbled bacon.
  11. Top each chicken thigh with equal portions of saute mushrooms.
  12. Divide the sharp cheddar cheese and place on top of each chicken thigh.
  13. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 8-10 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and the cheese is melted.
  14. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the parsley garnish and serve.

Bacon and Eggs

On a recent trip to Nashville, the legend of the “pork belly” was made alive for me like never before. The meat was tender AND crispy, then add to the flavors a creamy poached egg and I was in heaven. Me being me, I had to recreate this dish with my own twist and voila…Bacon & Eggs!

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Ingredients:

  • 1 lb pork bell, uncut slab
  • 2 Tbsp Kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Fresh cracked pepper
  • 4 room temperature eggs
  • 1 bunch turnip greens, washed and torn

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees
  2. Clean the pork belly by placing it under cold water to wash. Score the fatty side of the pork belly by creating diagonal markings in one direction and then the opposition direction to create diamonds.
  3. Rub the fatty side of the meat with olive oil and then rub the kosher salt into the diamonds on the fat.
  4. Season the rest of the pork belly and place the pork belly fat side up in a foil “boat” by bringing all of the edges of the foil around the meat leaving only the top of the pork belly exposed.
  5. Roast the meat for 3 hours. DO NOT baste the pork belly skin.
  6. After 3 hours, reduce the heat to 275 degrees and cook for an additional hour.
  7. Remove the meat from the oven and let it rest while preparing the rest of the meal.
  8. Add the pan juices from the pork belly to saute pan on medium-high.
  9. Place the turnip greens in the pan with the juices and saute for 10 minutes or until desired tenderness is reached. Salt and pepper to taste
  10. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a raging boil. Gently add the eggs and cook for 6-8 minutes.  The longer the eggs cook the more solid the yolk will be.
  11. Placed the cooked eggs under cold water to cool then remove shell.
  12. Prior to serving, place the rested pork belly back in the oven on 425 for 15-20 minutes to create a crackling crust.
  13. Salt and pepper to taste
  14. Remove, serve, and enjoy!

Juicy Bacon Burger

I love sports, especially football, so it is with great sadness that I acknowledge the end of football season with this Sunday’s exhibition of the Super Bowl. In honor of the final match (although it would be better if GREENBAY were playing)  I figure why not go out with a BANG and introduce you to the Juicy Bacon Burger!  I don’t know if you know this Super Bowl “factoid”, but all foods consumed on Super Bowl Sunday are CALORIE FREE 🙂 with that being said here is a bit of  heaven on a bun, kinda…

I don’t always eat burgers, but when I do it’s the Juicy Bacon Burger!  This burger is one of the juiciest, most decadent hamburgers I’ve ever eaten or made in my life. How can any sandwich with egg, cheese, and bacon be wrong? To help you get to know me better, I’m not a fan of sandwiches or hamburgers so to endorse this hamburger is a BIG DEAL. This recipe does come with a warning: you will need several napkins and a nice cold beer to enjoy the ultimate burger experience! photo-001

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz ground Short Ribs*
  • 8 oz ground Sirloin*
  • 8 oz ground Chuck*
  • 8 slices smoked bacon, thick cut
  • 4 slices Cheddar cheese
  • 4 large eggs, fried
  • ½ c Red Onions, pickled
  • 4 dill pickles, thin sliced
  • 4 English muffins, split
  • kosher salt
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • spicy ketchup (¼ c ketchup combined with ¼ c sriracha, add cayenne pepper to taste)

*If you don’t own a Kitchen Aide mixer with the meat grinding attachment, have your grocery store butcher grind the meats for you.

Directions:

  1. Preheat the stovetop grill pan and cook the bacon on medium-high until brown and crispy. Drain the bacon on paper towels while reserving the fat of the bacon in the pan and return it to the stovetop.
  2. Combine the ground meats in a bowl and season with kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper. Shape into patties that are a bit larger than the English muffins.  Place the burgers in the hot skillet containing the bacon fat and  cook the burgers 3 minutes on each side for doneness that is  medium rare. Cook an additional 2 minutes on each side for a well done burger.
  3. Place the sliced cheddar cheese on top of the flipped burger during the final minutes of cooking.  While the burgers are resting (the resting step is VERY important because this is what makes the burgers JUICY), lightly grill the English muffins for 1 minute. Pan fry each egg to your level of doneness (I prefer the yolk to run to add to the “juiciness”).
  4. Rest a patty on each of the bottom layers of the English muffins, followed by sliced pickles, red onions, fried egg, spicy ketchup and ENJOY!

adapted from Michael Symon

Spicy and Sweet Potato Salad

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Now that the holiday festivities are over, I am more than ready to get back to healthier eating. This contribution to “Healthy Sides” week starts off with the yummy goodness of sweet potatoes! It’s more than the usual roasted yams or whipped sweet potato, it’s a unique twist on a familiar veggie that will leave a big impression.  The natural sweetness of the potatoes, the crunch of the pecans, combined with the added kick of the crushed red peppers creates an unexpected “party” at first bite! Taste and enjoy this delightful recipe that boasts a mere 207 calories and 25 grams of carbs per 1/2 cup serving.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 lbs sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes (5 cups)

1 Tbsp sugar

1 Tbsp canola oil

1 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

3 strips thick-sliced bacon, chopped

1/2 c. red onions, slivered

1/4 c. honey

2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

1/4 c. pecans, toasted

2 Tbsp fresh lime juice

2 Tbsp scallions, thinly sliced

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. While the oven is heating, toss the chopped sweet potatoes with the sugar, oil, salt, and crushed red pepper flakes and roast for 30 minutes.  Saute the bacon until crisp and remove the fat, but leave the chopped bacon in the pan.  Add the  silvered red onions and saute for 3 minutes.  Add the honey and vinegar until thoroughly combined.  Place the roasted sweet potatoes in a bowl and combine the bacon mixture, pecans, lime juice, and scallions.  Salt and pepper to taste!

adapted from Cuisine at Home