Chicken Francese Anniversary Dinner

I’m going out with a bang this week. Normally Fridays are my What I Ate series but I’ve been traveling, and I’m super backlogged. I have a super exciting weekend of food coming up and I’ll kick it off with a big time Friday post! It is a bit delayed but without further ado, I give you my 1st wedding anniversary dinner! Ta-da!

We went to Portland for the weekend and ate, walked around, shopped, checked out some lighthouses, and swam in the hotel pool (check out how adorable it is!). When we got home I decided to make our wedding meal for dinner! Of course we had to eat our frozen slice of wedding cake too!

I made chicken francese, blue cheese mashed potatoes, and green beans. It turned out great!
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francaise

I drew the line at making squash veggie rings like the wedding venue had.

 

Chicken Francese

(adapted from Epicurious) 

Ingredients:

4 large skinless boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
3 large eggs, whisked
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (plus sliced lemon for garnish)
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Directions:

Place chicken breasts between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and gently pound chicken with flat side of a meat pounder (or with a rolling pin, canned goods, or cast iron skillet) until 1/4 inch thick.
Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat until hot but not smoking.
While oil is heating, stir together flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a shallow bowl.
Dredge chicken, in flour mixture, shaking off excess
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francese
then dredge in the eggs in another shallow bowl
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francese
When oil is hot, fry, turning over once, until golden brown and just cooked through, about 4 minutes total.
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francese
Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and keep warm in the oven (at 200-degrees). Fry remaining chicken in same manner.
Pour off and discard oil, then wipe skillet clean and heat butter over low until foam subsides. Add wine, broth, and lemon juice and boil, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until sauce is reduced to about 1/2 cup, about 6 minutes. (Do you know the trick of squeezing lemons upside down so you don’t drop any seeds in?)
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francese
Stir in parsley and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Spoon sauce over chicken and top with lemon slices.

It was good. I added some more lemon juice before serving because it got too sweet for me. I also had way too much parsley so I chopped it all and froze the leftovers in ice cube trays with a splash of water. Next time I need parsley I have small servings in the freezer! I also zested some lemon into the sauce too.
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francese

I had every intention of doing half mashed potatoes/half cauliflower but I was zipping around to get everything done at the same time and I totally forgot.  I mixed in some butter, milk, and blue cheese dressing. The blue cheese flavor was light but great. I think the salad dressing was a good use when I didn’t have other plans for blue cheese before jetting away on a work trip.
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francese

Now, the cake. Our frozen slice ‘o cake wasn’t nearly as gross as I thought it would be. I never eat wedding cake at weddings, but we haaaad to have one. I actually loved our wedding cake (when I ate it the next day). The frozen one moved with us and everything. We each ate a bite or two and then somebody, whose name starts with J, ate the rest of the piece of cake later too.
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francese
It was a great celebration and we have lots to celebrate. Good thing I have a year to come up with the next themed anniversary dinner!
The Three Bite Rule - Chicken Francese

Onion Dip Burger

Grilling the best part of summer. Dontcha think? Or maybe it is the beach. I think food is best in the summer. I capitalize on burgers at home since not everywhere offers their delicious combos ontop a burger I can eat. I can make my own chicken, pork, turkey, etc burger at home. Let’s be honest, I’ve been all about the ground pork lately since it is by far the cheapest, and tends to not get as dry as turkey. Try it.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger
This idea came from Ms. L long enough ago that she had forgotten about it. I didn’t. I heard onion-dip burger and was all about it! I modeled this one off my technique for ranch burgers.

Ingredients:

½ pound ground meat (I used pork)
1 container of onion dip
1 packet of onion soup mix
2 slices of cheese
3 tbs fried onions

Directions:

Mix the ground meat with the onion soup mix, and 1/3 cup onion dip until well incorporated.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger
Form into patties and grill (or cook) until cooked through.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger
Lightly warm fried onions in toaster oven or skillet.
Top burgers with cheese, onion dip, and fried onions.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger
Enjoy!

The onion burgers were juicy and completely flavor packed. I’m salivating just thinking of them. They stayed together perfectly on the grill (unlike some of my stuffed burgers).

These are such a great treat and EASY way to amp up your regular burger. I think the dip as a condiment is perfect and the crunch from the onions was awesome. They do have a use other than green bean casserole!

When I heard about onion dip burgers I was going to top it with chips, like Bobby Flay’s crunchified burgers but the onions seemed like a fun but unexpected topping.
The Three Bite Rule - Onion Burger

I do need to crunchify my next burger though.

Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Have you ever used corn tortillas? I guess I don’t know how to use them! I had an enchilada mishap I figured I’d share with you. Not that any of my meals are pefect but I think everyone needs a reminder that not everything goes to plan. The meals that do go to plan are just more fun to blog about.

They were super crumbly. I tried soaking them in water but they still cracked.
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Then I threw in the towel. I shredded the tortillas and made it casserole style.
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We ate it anyway. Ohh well.
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Bacon Wrapped Burgers

I was really excited for my menu for Mr. J’s birthday. My guy loooves a good burger so I thought about a bacon wrapped burger. I guess Birthday Burgers are a tradition now since I made stuffed burgers for his birthday last year.

I googled and saw a few that put bacon around the edge. That’s not good enough. I was thinking of weaving it to make a little bacon wrapping.
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It seemed like it would cook ok, it just might need to be secured with toothpicks (I recommend counting them to be sure they all come out). We strategized that getting the bacon crisped on the first side might help keep it all together before flipping.

Ingredients
2 burgers
strips of bacon (4-6 strips per burger)

Directions
Lay 3 strips of bacon and interlace 3 other strips in the opposite direction to form an L.
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Place burger on the bacon intersection. Fold the flaps over and weave them together.
bacon_burger_assembled_590_390Mr. J’s was a beef burger. I did ground pork. Though I didn’t eat Mr. J’s burger, I have to say I think the 4 strips of bacon is plenty (versus the 6 on his).

I served it with a cucumber ribbon salad. It was plain greek yogurt, dill, garlic, and pepper.
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I sliced the cucumber with a mandolin but was afraid to make them too thin. I figured not slicing my hand off was a good birthday present too.
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The burgers were reallllly good. I topped mine with swiss and Mr. J’s with American cheese. I think it was a fun meal.
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Now what kind of burger am I going to make for his bday next year??

BBQ Chicken Pizza

I’ll never tire of pizza toppings. This is actually an oldie-but-goodie. It was the first meal I made for Mr. J. It was kind of a go-to meal since it was easy regardless of grill access. I can’t believe I haven’t blogged it for you before!

bbq_pizza_slice_590_390

Ingredients:

Pizza dough
4 chicken tenders (or 2 breasts)
1 cup barbecue sauce
2 cups shredded mozzarella
½ red onion
2 green onions

Directions:

Pre-bake pizza crust at 400-degrees for 15 minutes or until the edges start getting crisp.
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Brush chicken tenders with ½ the barbecue sauce and grill until cooked through.
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Shred the cooked chicken with 2 forks.
Top the pizza crust with a light layer of barbecue sauce, then cheese, then red onions.
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Bake 20 minutes at 400 degrees.
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Remove from oven and top with chopped green onion and drizzle with bbq sauce.

I forgot how much I love this pizza. The sweet and tangy sauce with melty cheese…ohh so good. It is really good for leftovers too. Don’t let the 2 kinds of onions be intimidating. They are not overpowering. Topping this with a drizzle of sauce really makes it an impressive dinner.

On my trip to Chicago my colleague inspired a NEW pizza. Stay tuned for that one! Thanks Mrs. M!

Cheeseburger Pizza

Sometimes when I have a good thing going I don’t know why I change it up. I have pizza dough I love (Portland Pie Co) that I get at the grocery store. It comes in regular, beer, and basil but I especially love the garlic.

I’m not sure why I haaaad to try making biscuit dough crust. It was terrible. It tasted OK but looked quite sad. It was crumbly and never molded together. I made Cheeseburger Pizza which was phenomenal despite the crust being not so great.
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Ingredients:

Pizza dough
1/3 pound ground meat (I used ground pork)
1/3 cup tomato sauce
1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese (or cheddar and mozzarella mixed)
1 tomato, chopped
1 onion, chopped
pickles, chopped
lettuce
ketchup and mayo to drizzle

Directions:

Prepare pizza dough and prebake until crisp at 400 degrees.
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Cook the ground pork until cooked through and drain. Return to the pan and add onions for a few minutes until softened.
Assemble the pizza by topping the dough with sauce, meat, onions, and cheese.
burger_pizza_assembled_590_390 Bake 20 minutes or until heated through and the cheese melts.
burger_pizza_baked_590_390 Top with pickles, lettuce, tomato, and drizzle with ketchup and mayo.
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This was a really good pizza. I liked the flavors and it was a great use of some basic ingredients. I had the pork leftover and frozen from another dinner so it was also a great use of frozen meat. Frozen ground meat isn’t great as a burger but as taco meat, or pizza toppings the lack of freshness isn’t apparent.

I’ll make it again I’m sure. Pizza is such a regular weeknight dinner because the leftovers are so good too. I ate leftovers even though the “biscuit” crust wasn’t great. Here’s the biscuit recipe if you want to give it a go but I recommend sticking to regular dough.

I have another pizza to post soon and I have an idea I haven’t tried yet so stay tuned!