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    Bringing back the lost art of home cooking.
    Dec 12, 2012 2:13PM

    Chicken With Olives,Oranges and New Potatoes

    <span style="color: #000080;"><strong><span style="font-size: medium;">This is a super-easy, one pan meal adapted from Tyler Florence's cookbook, "Stirring the Pot".  The original recipe called for the use of bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts. Forgive me while I go on a tiny rant.

    First, a confession.  White meat confuses me. Why would anyone eat the white meat, when the dark meat has twice the flavor for half the price?????  I am going to tell you a secret of the culinary world: We all hate white meat chicken. Ask any chef, butcher, or food writer, and you will find a serious disrespect for the humble chicken breast.</span></strong></span>

    <span style="color: #000080;"><strong><span style="font-size: medium;">I know what you are thinking, the white meat is "leaner", therefore healthier.  In actuality, the difference is negligible: according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 100 g of white meat has 0.56 g of saturated fat and 114 calories; while the same amount of dark meat has 1 g and 119 calories.  

    You are much better off spending your poultry money on organic, free-range dark chicken meat, than the nasty, factory farmed breasts you find in most supermarkets. Even when I roast a whole chicken at home, the dark meat goes first. We are always left with a plate of white meat, that only gets eaten if it is converted into something tastier, like chicken salad, chicken quesadillas or chicken chili.

    So, back to the recipe. I substituted whole chicken legs (they are the legs, with the thigh still attached), sometimes known as the leg quarter. The only adaptation I make when using dark meat in place of white meat in a recipe is to increase the cooking time. There is no tried and true rule about how much to increase the cooking time by, but I usually start with an increase in time of 25%. In addition, I always use my meat thermometer to check that the dark meat has reached 170-175 F.</span></strong></span>


    Chicken With Olives,Oranges and New Potatoes

    4 whole chicken legs (thigh still attached) - skin on OR 2 large chicken breasts, split in       half down the middle – skin 
    Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Extra-virgin olive oil
    1 cup medium black olives, pitted
    1/2 orange, sliced into round circles
    4 large new potatoes, skin-on, ¼-inch thick-sliced
    1/4 bunch flat leaf parsley, for garnish

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

    Set a large oven-proof pan over medium heat and add a 3-tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil. Season chicken all-over with plenty of salt and pepper then add to the pan skin-side down.

    Cook for 7-8 minutes until the skin is nice and golden then turn chicken over and add potatoes, orange slices and olives evenly over and around the pan. Drizzle with a little more olive oil and shake the pan around a little so everything get’s coated nicely with the oil and chicken juices – this also helps settle everything into place. Cook for about 5 minutes on the stove-top until you get a little color on the potatoes.

    Season once more with salt and pepper then pop the whole pan in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the internal temperature has reached 170 F using an instant read thermometer.

    Garnish with fresh parsley stems.

    0 Comments ~ Posted By Gwenn Weiss
    Mar 17, 2012 10:24AM

    Mediterranean Chicken With Feta, Olives and Tomatoes on A Bed of Couscous



    Here's the deal.  I love feta cheese. I love olives. I love tomatoes. I love couscous.  There are tons of recipes with this combination of ingredients, but I haven't found the perfect marriage of these ingredients.  I decided to come up with a chicken dish, using only ingredients I had in my house.

    It just so happened that I made a Costco run last week, and had purchased a big bag of frozen chicken cutlets, a huge container of cherry tomatoes, a ginormous jar of olives and a brick of feta that was, well, the size of a brick.

    We were in the process of choosing a restaurant to dine at with another couple when I decided I really didn't want to shower and get dressed (I could wear my yoga pants all day, every day).  I knew I had the makings of a good dinner, so we invited our friends to come to our house instead.  The meal was a big hit.  In addition to the chicken dish, we had sweet and spicy pickle chips, cheese and Phil's homemade bread as a last minute appetizer.  We served the chicken with a Greek salad on the side, and dessert came out of my freezer (I always keep homemade desserts in the freezer).


    Mediterranean Chicken With Feta, Olives and Tomatoes

    1 c. uncooked couscous

    3 c. chicken broth

    6 thinly sliced chicken cutlets

    4 tsp. EVOO

    1  tsp. seasoning salt

    1  tsp. dried oregano

    1 tsp. garlic powder

    pinch of kosher salt

    pinch freshly ground pepper

    2 c. grape tomatoes, halved

    1 c. pitted Kalamata olives, roughly chopped (or any salty, pitted olive)

    ½ c. crumbled feta cheese

    1 c. chicken broth

    <span style="font-size: medium;">¼ c. chopped cilantro

    Cook couscous according to package directions in chicken broth (instead of water). Set aside and keep warm.In a small bowl mix together seasoning salt, oregano, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Set aside 1 tsp. of this mixture.Brush both sides of chicken with 2 tsp. olive oil, then sprinkle both sides with the seasoning mixture.Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Add chicken and cook 4 - 5 minutes per side, or until chicken is no longer pink in the center.  Remove the chicken to a plate and cover with foil. Add 1 c. of the chicken broth to the skillet that the chicken was cooked in. Degaze the pan if necessary. Once the broth is simmering, add chicken back to pan. Lower the heat to the lowest simmer setting, and keep warm.In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, olives, feta, the remaining 2 tsp. EVOO and remaining seasoning. Stir well and test for seasoning.Transfer cooked couscous to a platter. Top with chicken and a a few spoonfuls of the broth.  Top the couscous and the chicken with the tomato mixture. Garnish with cilantro.



    0 Comments ~ Posted By Gwenn Weiss
    Filed in: chicken ~ Tagged with: feta, olives, couscous, Greek
    Dec 13, 2010 2:08PM

    Meatless, Moneysaving Monday: Zucchini and Olive Pizza


    Yum!!!  Homemade pizza!  If you are starting with ready made dough (and why wouldn't you?),  it is quicker, healthier, cheaper and tastier to make your own.  It is...really!  Even if you favorite pizza is a standard variety tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese, a homemade version really is delicious.  Plus, you don't have to go out to get it.

    I like baking it on a pizza stone, which you can get anywhere for about $30.  It makes the crust very, very crispy, which is the way we like it.  It is also great for reheating pizza as well but a baking sheet will work too.


    Zucchini and Olive Pizza



    1 # pizza dough

    1 T. garlic infused olive oil

    2 medium sized zucchini, sliced into 1/8 inch slices

    2 T. chopped fresh oregano leaves, divided

    2 c. shredded mozarella

    1 1/2 c. grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano

    1/2 c. pitted sliced black olives



    Place oven rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat oven to 450.

    On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough into a 12 inch circle. With a pastry brush, brush 1 T. of the oil over the dough. Using the tines of a fork, prick the dough all over.

    Arrange the zucchini slices in a single layer on top of the dough. Drizzle the zucchini with the rest of the oil.

    Bake the pizza for 18 - 20 minutes, or until the edges begin to brown. Remove the pizza from the oven, sprinkle with 1 T. of oregano, the cheeses and the olives.

    Bake 5 - 7 minutes until the cheeses are melted and bubbly.

    Sprinkle the pizza with the remaining oregano, cut into wedges and serve.


    0 Comments ~ Posted By Gwenn Weiss
    Filed in: pizza ~ Tagged with: cheeses, mozzarella, olives, zucchini
    Nov 29, 2010 2:50AM

    Tilapia with Warm Olive Salsa and Lemon Couscous

    Need to lighten up a little after a Thanksgiving weekend overindulgence?  I have a dinner menu for you.  These recipes are from Cooking Light's 5 Ingredient Cookbook.  This meal is colorful, delicious, easy and quick to prepare, and perfect for a bust weeknight dinner.  This is good enough to serve to guests as well.  Plus, it will be on the table in about 20 minutes.



    Tilapia with Warm Olive Salsa

    courtesy of Cooking Light


    Squeeze a lemon wedge over the fish before drizzling with olive oil to tie together the components of this dish. Any thin white fillets, such as sole or flounder, can be substituted for tilapia.


    Cooking spray

    1  cup  chopped plum tomato (about 1/3 pound)

    12  small pimiento-stuffed olives, chopped

    2  tablespoons  chopped fresh parsley

    1 1/2  teaspoons  chopped fresh oregano, divided

    4  (6-ounce) tilapia fillets, rinsed and patted dry

    1/4  teaspoon  salt

    1/4  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper

    4  lemon wedges

    1  tablespoon  extra-virgin olive oil



    1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add tomato; cook 1 minute or until thoroughly heated. Combine cooked tomato, olives, parsley, and 3/4 teaspoon oregano in a small bowl; keep warm.

    2. Wipe pan dry with a paper towel; return pan to medium-high heat. Recoat pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle fillets evenly with 3/4 teaspoon oregano, salt, and pepper. Add fillets to pan; cook 3 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Squeeze 1 lemon wedge over each fillet; drizzle each evenly with oil. Top evenly with olive salsa.

    Lemon Couscous with Pine Nuts

    courtesy of Cooking Light


    1  cup  water

    2/3  cup  uncooked whole wheat couscous

    1  teaspoon  grated lemon rind

    1/4  cup  pine nuts, toasted

    2  teaspoons  extra-virgin olive oil

    1/4  teaspoon  salt


    1. Bring 1 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan. Stir in couscous and lemon rind. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 5 minutes. Add pine nuts and remaining ingredients; fluff with a fork.




    0 Comments ~ Posted By Gwenn Weiss
    Filed in: Seafood ~ Tagged with: pine nuts, olives, tilapia, couscous, healthy, tomatoes