December 2007


Hello!

Every once in a while, I ‘wing’ it on a weeknight. A few weeks ago, I didn’t know what I was going to make but I knew I had a can of artichokes and some large chicken breasts. I’d also just baked a fresh batch of croutons with some leftover stale bread.

What happened in the kitchen that night was pure genius. Ok, maybe that was an exaggeration, but it definitely was darn good.

Enjoy!

CHICKEN IN ARTICHOKE SAUCE WITH CRISPY CROUTON TOPPING
Serves 2

If you have homemade croutons, great. If not, buy come seasoned croutons. Place about 1.5-2 cups of the croutons in a food processor and pulse until you have large crumbs. If you don’t have a food processor, give them a few good whacks with your rolling pin, or the back of a skillet.

Cut up two boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Preheat a large sauté pan with 1 tbs. extra virgin olive oil. Saute the chicken pieces until cooked through. Remove them from the pan.

Add 1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil and 1 clove chopped garlic to the pan and sauté for 30 seconds. Sprinkle 1 tbs. flour on the mixture. Stir so that the flour gets “cooked.” You don’t want to see any more white. Cook for about a minute.

Whisk in ½ cup chicken stock and ½ cup white wine. Bring to a simmer. The sauce should thicken up after a minute or so. Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste. Add 1 can of quartered artichokes in water to the pan. Add the cooked chicken pieces back to the pan. Stir to combine.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Sprinkle the crouton breadcrumbs onto the chicken/artichoke mixture and place it in the oven for 5-10 minutes or until the crumbs have browned a little.

Bon appetit!

Happy Cooking!

Sincerely,

Lauren Hillman
Hillman’s Helpings

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I made the following recipe for a holiday party this weekend – they were amazing and best of all, they’re low fat! Only 131 calories per brownie!

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (about 6 3/4 ounces)
2 cups sugar, divided
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
3/4 cup 2% reduced-fat milk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract, divided
2 large eggs
Cooking spray
1/2 cup (4 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
1 large egg white


Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, 1 3/4 cups sugar, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Place butter and chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl; microwave at HIGH for 45 seconds or until melted, stirring once. Combine milk, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and eggs, stirring well with a whisk. Add chocolate mixture and milk mixture to flour mixture; beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended. Spoon batter evenly into a 13 x 9-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray.

Place remaining 1/4 cup sugar, remaining 1/4 teaspoon vanilla, cheese, and egg white in a medium bowl; beat at medium speed until well blended using clean, dry beaters. Drizzle cheese mixture evenly over chocolate mixture; swirl batters together using the tip of a knife. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until batter begins to pull away from sides of pan. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Hello!

Happy belated Hanukkah! The holiday definitely snuck up on everyone this year…we barely had time to recover from Thanksgiving before this holiday began on Tuesday evening!

I’ve always been a huge fan of potato latkes, the traditional fried potato pancake that is eaten on this holiday. A few years ago, I began experimenting with sweet potatoes and found that these are even better than the traditional latke! The combination of sweet potatoes, scallions and oil (yum!) make this a great recipe for Hanukkah or as a side dish any night of the week!

Enjoy!

SWEET POTATO LATKES

1 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and coarsely grated
2 scallions, finely chopped
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 cup vegetable oil

Preparation

Stir together potatoes, scallions, flour, eggs, salt, and pepper.

Heat oil in a deep 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Working in batches of 4, spoon 1/8 cup potato mixture per latke into oil and flatten to 3-inch diameter with a slotted spatula. Reduce heat to moderate and cook until golden, about 1 1/2 minutes on each side. Transfer latkes with spatula to paper towels to drain.

Serve with sour cream and/or applesauce!

Bon appetit!

Happy Hanukkah! I hope you enjoyed Hillman’s Helpings.

Sincerely,

Lauren Hillman
Hillman’s Helpings

Believe it or not, I’d never made meatballs until last night. I’m a huge fan of meat LOAF and meat SAUCE, but somehow, meat BALLS have never entered my repetoire….until last night. I made them from a joy of cooking recipe and used ground sirloin (more fat) than traditional ground beef. They were great with homemade tomato sauce and whole wheat spaghetti!

Enjoy!

Combine thoroughly:

1 lb ground beef
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup grated parm
1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
1 medium onion finely chopped
1/2 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
3 tbs. tomato paste
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground pepper
1/2 tsp. dried oregano

Roll into 1.5 inch balls. Roll in flour anjd brown in a pan with extra virgin olive oil. place them on a baking sheet and put in a 375 degree oven for 10-15 minutes or until done.