Tuesday, July 16, 2013

friday night dinner: chicken roll-ups with creamy cauliflower mashed potatoes

Getting into a relationship prompts eating out, sharing desserts and general indulgence--and it's all delicious, fun and exciting.

But Mike and I have been together for almost a year (ahhhh within itself!) and I am really making a conscious effort to be healthier.

Does that mean I am going to cut out ice cream, cheese or wine? NO. Do you think I will be cutting out pasta? I mean, have you read this blog?!?

It's about moderation, and making small changes where I can, but still indulging at times (buratta and gelato this weekend? yes, please!)

So after a Friday afternoon brainstorm with my co-workers, we came up with these stuffed chicken roll-ups. I swung by the grocery store and the cauliflower mashed potatoes came to me-you get the consistency and taste of mashed potatoes, but you sneak in veggies. It's definitely one of my favorite fake-out foods.

chicken roll-ups
1 lb of chicken breasts, pounded thin (the best part of this is you can buy the breasts, slice in half, cover in plastic wrap and pound the guts out of it. use a rolling pin or any non-breakable object--it really gets your frustrations out after a long week.) this should give you 4 thin pieces
1 lb of spinach, chopped
2 heirloom tomatoes, chopped
1 cup ricotta (buy full-fat, and buy it fresh if you can)
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped (half the amount if dried)
salt, pepper and red pepper flakes for seasoning

creamy cauliflower mashed potatoes
1 head of cauliflower, diced up
4 small potatoes (any type you like) skin left on and diced
1-2 dollops of fat free sour cream
1 tbsp fat free milk
1 tbsp butter
salt and pepper for seasoning

heres what to do (warning-lots of multitasking ahead!):
  • preheat oven to 350, and preheat a pan (I used my cast iron because it can go from stovetop to oven) with some olive oil
  • saute spinach and tomatoes with parsley, salt and pepper in pan (garlic would be a great addition here too, Mike hates it so I left it out.)-once cooked down, drain and save the juices
  • keep your pan on low heat and add some more oil
  • put up a pot of cold water with diced potatoes and small handful of salt-let them boil on their own for about 5 minutes and then add the cauliflower
  • in a small bowl, mix ricotta, and a pinch each of salt, pepper and red pepper flakes
  • your spinach and tomatoes should be cooled, so spread the thin chicken breasts out next to each other, season on both sides with s&p and begin stuffing with a teaspoon of spinach/tomato mix, then a small dollop of the ricotta mixture
  • once you have your toppings on the chicken, roll each one and seal with a toothpick (if you have one)
  • if not, put them seam side down in your warm pan and turn heat up to medium heat
  • you want to get a good color on all sides of the chicken (about 2-3 mins per side) and then transfer to your preheated oven for approx 10 minutes and remove from the oven and let rest
  • at this point the potato/cauliflower should be boiled by now--pierce a potato with a fork and it should almost fall apart-drain your potatoes & cauliflower, making sure to reserve some water
  • transfer to a mixing bowl, add your butter, milk, sour cream, salt and pepper and beat until creamy and season to taste
  • lastly, take your pan juices from the chicken, some potato/cauliflower water and the excess juice from the spinach and tomato saute and heat/whisk together with a bit more seasoning to make a flavorful pan sauce to add to your chicken

serves two

plate and serve-enjoy!

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