Kingsport Times News Sunday, August 30, 2015

Family Meals Matter: Golden rings

December 9th, 2013 8:34 am by Staff Report

Family Meals Matter: Golden rings


Belting “Five Golden Rings” from the top of your lungs while singing the 12 Days of Christmas is as much a part of the holiday season as hanging stockings or drinking eggnog. Inspired by this favored refrain of a classic carol, we’ve used some creative license and selected healthy recipes this week that showcase golden rings either in hue or in shape.

Start with a featured family meal of Chicken Stuffed with Golden Onions + Fontina, Broccoli and Roasted Red Pepper Pasta and Snowdrop Cookies. Continue the healthful celebration with Spiced Sweet Potato Casserole, Honey Glazed Pork Loin, Basmati Rice Pudding with Oranges and Buttermilk Coffee Cake.



Total Preparation Time: 45 minutes

Actual Cooking Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Number of Servings: 4 (258 calories/serving)

A semi-firm cheese that's nonetheless quite creamy, fontina melts into pure heaven. Combined with caramelized onions, fontina becomes a nutty, gooey, irresistible filling for chicken breasts.


4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 1/2 cups thinly sliced red onion

2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary, divided

1/8 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground pepper to taste

2/3 cup shredded fontina cheese, preferably aged

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 pound), trimmed of fat

1/2 cup white wine

1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

4 teaspoons all-purpose flour


1. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and 1 teaspoon rosemary; cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is golden brown, 6 to 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Let cool; stir in fontina.

2. Meanwhile, cut a horizontal slit along the thin, long edge of each chicken breast half, nearly through to the opposite side. Stuff each breast with 1/4 cup of the onion-cheese mixture.

3. Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons oil in the same skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until golden, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

4. Add wine and the remaining 1 teaspoon rosemary to the pan. Cook over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Whisk broth and flour in a bowl until smooth; add to the pan, reduce heat to low and whisk until the sauce thickens, about 1 minute. Return the chicken to the pan and coat with the sauce. Cook, covered, until the chicken is just cooked through, 2 to 4 minutes. Serve the chicken topped with the sauce.

Cook's Notes:

— Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, arguably the most versatile cut of chicken, are very low in fat, only 1 to 2 grams of fat per serving. Conveniently, one 4- to 5-ounce breast, tender removed, yields a perfect 3-ounce cooked portion. When preparing, trim any excess fat from the outer edge of the breast.

— Chicken tenders, virtually fat-free, are a strip of rib meat typically found attached to the underside of the chicken breast, but they can also be purchased separately. Four 1-ounce tenders will yield a 3-ounce cooked portion. Tenders are perfect for quick stir-fries, chicken satay or kid-friendly breaded "chicken fingers."


Total Preparation Time: 45 minutes

Actual Cooking Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Number of Servings: 4 (388 calories/serving)

This dish is filling, tasty and low in fat!


2 red bell peppers

1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes

Sea salt to taste

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

2 cups broccoli florets

12 ounces penne or other sturdy pasta

Olive oil cooking spray

1 tablespoon chopped fresh garlic

2 vine-ripened tomatoes, seeded and diced

2 teaspoons dried basil

4 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese


1. Preheat the broiler. Place peppers on a broiling pan. Broil, turning frequently, until skins blister and turn black. Transfer the peppers to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 10 minutes.

2. To peel peppers, place under cool running water and peel away blistered skins. Slice open and wash out seeds. Place the peppers in a food processor or blender; add balsamic vinegar, crushed red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Puree until smooth.

3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add broccoli florets and cook for 1 minute. Scoop out the broccoli with a slotted spoon and set aside. Bring the water back to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente, about 8 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, spray a large skillet with cooking spray and place over medium-low heat. Add garlic. Cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes and increase the heat to medium. When the tomatoes begin to simmer, stir in pepper puree and broccoli; cook for 2 minutes. Stir in basil and remove from the heat.

5. Drain the pasta and add to the skillet, stirring to coat.

6. Spoon into shallow bowls and garnish each with 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan.


Total Preparation Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Actual Cooking Time: 15 to 30 minutes

Number of Servings: 10 or more (89 calories/serving)


4 Egg whites, at room temperature

1/4 teaspoon Cream of Tartar

1 cup Sugar

1 teaspoon Vanilla extract

1/2 cup Chocolate chips, tiny size


1. Beat egg whites with an electric mixer at high speed until soft peaks form.

2. Add cream of tartar. Add sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, beating after each time, until stiff peaks forms.

3. Add vanilla extract and beat until well blended.

4. Fold in chocolate chips. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto a foiled lined un-greased baking sheet and bake at 250 degrees for 30 minutes.

5. Outside of the cookie will be hard; inside will be slightly soft. Makes 36 cookies.







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