Thursday, August 22, 2013

Avocado Chicken Salad

Here's a really delicious chicken salad recipe from Paula Deen's website that's sure to be a winner for those end of Summer potlucks or family BBQ's. If you have a few extra avocados laying around that need to be used and/or some left-over chicken, this would be a perfect way to use them up. The first time I made this, I cut the ingredients by half... I don't like wasting food when experimenting with a new recipe. It was ridiculously good... but make sure the chicken salad has had time to chill in the refrigerator before serving... it's much better cold! Feel free to use a reduced-fat mayonnaise and sour cream, if you wish... if you're concerned about that. This would also be wonderful if you used a rotisserie chicken that you buy at the grocery store, pull off the meat, chop it up and throw it into the salad. You could serve this on a bed of lettuce with freshly sliced tomatoes.     

Avocado Chicken Salad
by Paula Deen


3 cups cooked, diced chicken
3 cups cooked white rice
2 avocados, peeled, diced, and tossed with 1 tablespoon lemon juice
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 cup mayonnaise
1 to 2 teaspoons pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves

Avocado Dressing:
1 large avocado, peeled and mashed with 2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
Dash cayenne pepper
Thick, crusty bread, multi-grain or sourdough, for serving
Lemon wedges, for garnish


Mix all ingredients and chill. Pass with avocado dressing.

Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Chill and serve alongside chicken salad.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Crispy Oven Zucchini Fries

At long last - I'M BACK!!!

This Summer has been tough keeping up on my food blog... but I've been home and back in my kitchen in Philadelphia for the last few weeks and have tried a few new recipes that I'm excited to share with you! I'm spare you the recipes that didn't turn out so well. ;-)

Summertime brings in one of my favorite vegetables - zucchini!! There are so many different ways to prepare zucchini. You can serve it grilled, sautéed, mashed, and, my favorite, bread & fried with a side of ranch dressing. YUM! I found this recipe for Crispy Oven Zucchini Fries on Paula Deen's website- Go here to visit the site. It has the same type of crunch that fried zucchini has... only a bit healthier because it's baked. Using panko breadcrumbs for a coating is a brilliant idea... mixed in with some grated Parmasean cheese and fresh parsley (I add it)... it's a winning combo! They make perfect finger foods, appetizers and/or a side dish that everybody can enjoy.

Because of this recipe, I was introduced to baking with parchment paper... which, if you haven't baked with it before, it's wonderful. Why didn't I know about this before!?! It saves your cookie sheets or baking sheets the hassle of getting messy while baking... after you're finished baking, just remove the paper from the sheet and that's it... an easy clean up! I guess you do learn something new everyday!

 Crispy Oven Zucchini Fries
by Paula Deen

½ cup all purpose flour 
1 beaten egg with 1 egg white
½ cup panko breadcrumbs
¼ cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
2 zucchini, sliced into ½ inch thick and 4 inches long
Cooking spray


1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

2. Add flour to a pie plate and whisk in some salt and pepper.

3. Beat the eggs together in another pie plate.

4. In a third pie plate, whisk together the panko, Parmesan, smoked paprika, and another big pinch of salt and pepper.

5. Dip the zucchini in the flour, then in egg, and then through the breadcrumb mixture. Add the zucchini to a parchment lined sheet tray, leaving ample room between each fry so it has room to crisp up form the heat of the oven. Give the zucchini a light spritz with some non-stick spray and sprinkle again with some salt.

 6. Bake for 10 minutes, then flip, and continue cooking for 10 minutes more, until golden and crisp.