Thursday, December 8, 2011

Wednesday Dinner

Might sound weird to have a "tradition" of Wednesday dinners, but that's what Hamad and I have set up.  This mostly happened because I was annoyed that I only get to see him on the weekends (my fault, totally for being so busy) and decided we needed to pick a weeknight that was just for us.  So we picked Wednesday.

Sometimes we don't know what will be for dinner until Wednesday afternoon, but since we both love food and coming up with food ideas, we usually start discussing it earlier.  We were e-mailing Tuesday and he made a few suggestions, one of which was chicken rollup with broccoli and cheddar.  I honed in on that!  I'd made it once before for a friend, and had modeled it on SkinnyTaste's Chicken Rollatini Stuffed with Zucchini and Mozzarella, simply switching out the type of cheese and veggie.  Poor Hamad thought he was inventing something new and was a bit surprised when I told him I had made it before.  Oops, should have kept that to myself.

Anyway, I thought he would object to the broccoli to cheddar ratio, but to my surprise, he said it was great! Even better was, since I used 2 cups broccoli and made 4 servings, each serving contained about a half cup of broccoli - or one full veggie serving!  At first, I thought I'd made too much filling and it wasn't going to fit in my chicken, but it ended up fitting perfectly!

Also noteworthy: If you don't have chicken cutlets, or need to get out some aggression, you can easily make your own with a plastic bag or plastic wrap and a good mallet.

(I apologize for the lack of pictures on this one.  I accidentally deleted them while transferring them from my camera.  Oops!)

Broccoli & Cheddar Stuffed Chicken Roll-ups
Inspired by SkinnyTaste
Serves 4    PointsPlus Value 7

1 lb chicken cutlets (4 cutlets)
2 cups broccoli florets (I used frozen - about 2/3 of a 16oz bag of florets)
3 oz cheddar cheese (I did half white cheddar, half yellow cheddar, both SHARP)
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I was going to use regular, but pulled out the panko style, so I went with it)
1 egg, beaten
non-stick spray

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Coat small baking dish with non-stick spray.
2. Shred or grate cheese.  Put about 1/3 of cheese on a plate and the remainder in a mixing bowl.
3. Cook broccoli until bright green but not too tender.  Cut off stems (the "trunks," if you will) and chop up the florets ("treetops," as I like to call them) into itty bitty pieces and toss into mixing bowl with cheese.  Stir it up until broccoli and cheese are well combined.
4. In a small bowl, beat egg.  Add breadcrumbs to the plate with the cheese and mix together until cheese is incorporated into bread crumbs.
5. Lay out chicken cutlets on a plate.  Add about 1/4 of broccoli-cheese mix to each cutlet and roll up.  Dip each piece in egg and roll in breadcrumbs.  Place in baking dish, seam-side down.  Spray lightly with non-stick spray and bake at 450 for 25-30 min until chicken is cooked through.  
6. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Reason #874 I Love My Job

Maybe I should make a real list of reasons I love my job so I can accurately track their numbers.  But, since I like to hyperbolize, let's go with #874.

Oh, and for clarity, I'm talking about my day job this time, not Mary Kay (though I love that, too).

Once a year, my agency closes it's doors for half a day and pairs up with NY Cares.  They set up volunteer projects, and encourage employees to take the morning/early afternoon off to volunteer their time for one of these projects.  Projects range from helping out at a soup kitchen, to chaperoning class trips, to making things.

Last year (my first year), I went on a scavenger hunt at the American Museum of Natural History with a class of 4th graders.  It was fun, but the hunt had 40 questions, and that was a little too much for the 9 and 10-year-olds in my group to handle.  This year, I decided to stay in office and make baby blankets to be donated to a shelter.

After I signed up for the project, I had a moment of doubt.  Baby blankets?  Make baby blankets?  I'm totally not crafty at all.  But there was no sewing involved, so I convinced myself I could do it.  And I did!  And I actually enjoyed it, so all my pregnant friends (there are a few) should now expect baby blanket gifts.

Guess I can be crafty, after all.