Roasted Red Pepper, Mozzarella and Basil Stuffed Chicken

If you know the real me then you know that I am not a major fan of cooking.  You would think that with all the Food Network shows I watch I would have a home cooked meal on the table every night, I’m just not that type of woman.  Well after getting bashed and teased about how I’m not a ‘normal’ girl because I don’t like cooking I finally decided to make my man a meal.  Now I’m no Betty Crocker but if you give me a recipe then I can sure as heck follow that recipe to a T and make a great meal.  I was craving chicken that night so I searched and searched and searched for an easy meal because I knew that Ry was gonna be home within the next hour.  I finally found the perfect chicken to try.  It’s a roasted red pepper, mozzarella and basil stuffed chicken.  The picture is what sold me on the recipe, so I put my little invisible chef hat on and headed to Publix.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time:  35 minutes
Total Time:  50 minutes

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
8 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced into 8 slices
1 12 oz jar of roasted red peppers sliced into 1 inch pieces (about two whole red peppers if you roast your own)
1 bunch of basil, whole leaves
1/4 cup fresh grated parmesan
Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper for seasoning

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Grease a 9×12 casserole dish.  Butterfly chicken breasts by slicing into the long side of the breast, stopping just about 1/4 of an inch from the opposite side.  Lay chicken breast in casserole dish opened up.  Sprinkle the exposed insides of the chicken breast with 1/2 of the Italian seasoning and salt and pepper.  Stack the roasted red pepper, basil, and 1 slice of the mozzarella on the bottom side of the chicken.  Fold the top flap of the chicken over, tucking in the mozzarella, basil and roasted red pepper as necessary.  Sprinkle with the remaining Italian seasoning.  Bake chicken for 30-40 minutes (until chicken is no longer pink).  Pull chicken out of oven and turn the oven to a high broil.  Top chicken with remaining mozzarella slices and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  Broil until cheese is browned and bubbly, about 5 minutes.
Now normally if I do attempt to cook Ry doesn’t normally like it (he is a VERY picky eater but won’t admit it), however, I will mark the day that I made this chicken because Ry actually admitted that he liked the chicken and would eat it again.  HALLELUJAH!  This is for all you ladies (or men) that get teased because they don’t cook, you CAN do it.  With Pinterest’s help, ANYTHING is possible.
xoxo, H

Pizza Balls

Pizza Ball

3 cans of Pillsbury Buttermilk Buscuits
60 pepperoni slices
Block of cheese
1 beaten egg
Parmesan cheese
Italian Seasoning
Garlic Powder
1 jar pizza sauce

Slice cheese into about 28 squares.  Flatten each biscuit and stack pepperoni and cheese on top.  Gather edges of biscuit and secure on top of the roll.  Line rolls in greased 9×13 pan.  Brush with beaten egg.  Sprinkle with parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning and garlic powder.  Bake at 425 degrees for 18-20 minutes.  Serve with warm pizza sauce for dipping.

Turkey Minestrone

With my current health issues I am now not allowed to eat beef or anything that resembles beef.  Normally, minestrone is made with ground beef (which is absolutely delicious) but I decided to make this soup with ground turkey.

I am a absolute southern girl, with that being said I shop at Publix so this was a BOGO (buy one get one) deal.  You don’t have to add anything to this mix except for 8 cups of water (I add a little extra because the noodles absorb it) but being the over achiever that I am I add extra things.  Add a little salt and olive oil to the water to help the water boil a little faster.  Once the water has come to a roaring boil you add the soup mix.

While the water is boiling go ahead and brown either the ground turkey or the ground beef that way it is ready to be put into the the soup when ready. If you use ground beef then be sure to drain the grease and pat all of the grease out of the meat.

About 8 minutes after the minestrone is cooking go ahead and add this pasta (you don’t have to add this specific type of pasta, I only bought it because I thought the stars were adorable).  Let it keep simmering on about medium heat until the carrots are nice and soft and easy to eat.

To help make the soup last longer I went ahead and made some garlic bread, I am a cheese lover so I add extra cheese while they are baking.

This is the perfect type of meal to have when it becomes freezing cold outside.  I keep these sorts of soups on hand in my pantry when it becomes chilly outside.  This brand makes about 5-7 different types of soups that all you do is add some water and let them cook.  My boyfriend and I love them when the cold weather comes.

Cheddar Bacon Ranch Chicken Pasta

1 pound mostacciloi or other short pasta
6 strips of bacon, diced
1 tablespoon butter
2 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-size pieces
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 packet ranch dressing mix
2 cups milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Cook pasta according to package directions in boiling salted water; drain, return to pot, and keep warm.
2. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels. Drain all but one tablespoon of bacon drippings from the pan.
3. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add the butter to the reserved bacon drippings, then add the chicken to the same skillet. Cook until tender, no longer pink, and slightly browned.
4. Sprinkle the flour and ranch dressing mix over the chicken, stirring to coat evenly. Stir in the milk, and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened and bubbly. Stir in the cheddar cheese and half of the reserved bacon; cook and stir until the cheese is melted. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
5. Add the cheese sauce to the reserved pasta and stir to combine. Serve each plate of pasta with more bacon sprinkled over the top. Green onions would also be a delicious topping.