Monday, February 18, 2013

Stuffed Cajun Chicken and Potatoes Gratin

To sum it up, before you read, "Yum."

I've been a bit absent from the cooking world lately, mainly due to lack of inspiration. However, I now have the Food Network again, and my mom got an iPad and now has Pinterest. Thus, how I found protein for this meal: Cajun Chicken Stuffed with Pepper Jack Cheese and Spinach. The recipe, was rather easy, and I did do as the author suggests, and I made my own Cajun seasoning. I did have to make a few substitutes (no onion salt, so used celery salt instead).  

However, I would say I will do it a bit differently, next time. The author suggests that you pound your chicken into a 1/4'' flatness. I did this on the first one, but it was nearly impossible to stuff, and the "rolling" was quite difficult. On the second breast, I merely "butterfly" cut the breast, so that I had a nice pocket, leaving two "seams" on the side, as well as of course the bottom. This made the stuffing of the spinach/pepper jack much easier. 

The next thing I altered, was I bought my spinach fresh, and cooked it. In case you were not aware, spinach cooks extremely quickly, and also significantly decreases in mass. The "bunch"of spinach you buy, will shrivel up to almost nothing, but it is all still there! (I just put some olive oil in a frying pan, put it over medium heat, and added the spinach, popped the cover on, and let it cook down, occasionally tossing it just to ensure it didn't burn.) 

Finally, I would just note that if you are cutting the recipe down, you won't need all of the spice. My mistake was not testing the mixture to note the spiciness. Thus, for the future, I will probably decrease the spice by half. 

On to other things. I used my trusty AllRecipes app on my iPhone to find the Potatoes Gratin. My amazing mom bought my partner and I a mandolin, so I of course had to find a recipe which I could use it for. This recipe is very straight forward, and I would rate it 5 stars. The taste is simple, and the onions really enhance the cheese and potato flavor.  

And the finale: 

This is a Tart Cherry and Peach pie. I used my favorite pie crust recipe which I've blogged about before, and the purchased filling from the store. I normally would not buy pre-made fillings, but this filling came in a jar. The crust is latticed as you can tell, and so darn flaky. I prepped the dough (one note I will make is, sometimes the dough is a little dry, so just add more milk. I think I ended up using 3/4 of a cup as opposed to 1/2, as the recipe suggested)  like always, and then preheated the oven to 350*.  I didn't make any changes to the filling, but I did taste it before I dumped it all in. 

This pie will be great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. 

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