Monday, June 11, 2018

Bj's Brewery's Parmesan Crusted Chicken

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This meal was a HUGE hit in our house! The brine of the chicken makes all the difference so please do not skip that step. This is one of my favorite dishes at BJ’s Brewhouse and it really does taste just liken it! I’ll post the recipe for the potatoes Wednesday.

Bj's Brewery's Parmesan Crusted Chicken

(Adapted from Recipe Helpers)


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2 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt
4 large boneless, skinless breasts
4 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 cup Japanese breadcrumbs (panko)
1 cup shredded Parmesan
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Lemon Chardonnay Butter Sauce:
1/4 cup butter (salted)
1/4 cup Chardonnay wine
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon granulated sugar
Dash salt
1-1/3 cups heavy cream
Light olive oil

2 Tablespoons shredded parmesan
4 teaspoons minced sundried tomatoes
4 Tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil

Brine for chicken: Dissolve salt with chicken broth in a medium bowl. Cover
chicken breasts with plastic wrap and pound each one to about 1/2 inch thick with a kitchen mallet. If breasts are large, cut the breasts in half. Add
flattened chicken to brine. Cover and chill for 3 hours. After chicken has
marinated, remove the fillets from brine and blot with paper towels to
remove excess liquid.

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Beat eggs in a medium bowl. Place flour onto a plate. Combine breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper in another medium bowl.

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To bread the chicken, coat each fillet with flour, then dip into beaten egg, and follow by dipping into the Parmesan mixture, coating breast well. Let the breaded fillets rest for a bit on a plate in your fridge while preparing the chardonnay butter sauce.

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Lemon Chardonnay Butter Sauce: Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add wine and simmer 1 minute. Stir in lemon juice, sugar, and salt, and then add cream. Simmer on low heat for 10 to 12 minutes, until mixture thickens.

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Add oil to cover the bottom of a large skillet, heating over medium heat
until hot. Sauté each breaded chicken fillet in oil for 4 to 5 minutes per
side or until brown. Remove fillets to a paper towel-covered plate until
ready to serve.

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Serve each filet with a couple teaspoons of butter sauce spooned over the
top. Top each filet with a tablespoon of parmesan cheese followed by 1
heaping teaspoon of minced sundried tomatoes, and a tablespoon of basil.

Serves 4 as an entrée.

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Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Almond Amaretto Cupcakes

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Happy birthday to me! I actually wanted to make these cupcakes for my birthday, but ended up making them in May for my husband’s birthday. Whatever it’s just another day when you’re older right, plus what’s his is mine lol. Anyway, these are really really good! You do have to let them sit out a little just before eating, but otherwise worth all the fuss. Plus I even got to use my cupcake corer tool I’ve had forever now.

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Almond Amaretto Cupcakes

(Adapted from Life, Love and Sugar)


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8 oz white chocolate chips
5 tbsp (75ml) Amaretto
3 tbsp (45ml) heavy whipping cream

6 tbsp (84g) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cups (155g) sugar
6 tbsp (86g) sour cream
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
3 egg whites
1 1/4 cups (163g) all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
6 tbsp (90ml) milk
2 tbsp (30ml) water

3/4 cup (168g) salted butter
1/2 cup (95g) shortening
5 cups (575g) powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
3-4 tbsp (45-60ml) water or milk
Sliced almonds, broken into pieces

To make the ganache, put the white chocolate chips in a medium sized bowl.

Put the amaretto and heavy whipping cream in a microwave safe measuring cup or bowl and microwave until it begins to boil.

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Pour the cream over the white chocolate chips and allow to sit for 2-3 minutes, then whisk until smooth. If needed, microwave the mixture for 10-20 more seconds, then whisk until smooth.

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Set the ganache in the fridge to firm up, about 2-3 hours.

To make the cupcakes, preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.

In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light in color and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Do not skimp on the amount of creaming time.

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Add sour cream and almond extract and mix until well combined.

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Add egg whites in two batches, mixing until well combined after each.

Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all ingredients are well incorporated.

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Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then combine the milk and water in a small measuring cup.

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Add half of the dry ingredients to the batter and mix until well combined.

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Add the milk mixture and mix until well combined.

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Add remaining dry ingredients and mix until well combined.

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Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to be sure all ingredients are well incorporated.

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Fill the cupcake liners about halfway.

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Bake for 15-17 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out with a few crumbs.
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Remove cupcakes from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove to cooling rack to finish cooling.

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While the cupcakes cool, finish the ganache. Put the ganache in the bowl of a mixer and whip with the whisk attachment until soft peaks form, about 5-7 minutes. You’ll notice the ganache lighten in color.

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Cut out the centers of the cupcakes. You can use a cupcake corer or a knife.

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Fill the centers of the cupcakes with the white chocolate ganache. Set the cupcakes in the fridge while you make the frosting.

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To make the frosting, combine the butter and shortening with a mixer until smooth.

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Add about half of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth and well combined.

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Add 3 tablespoons of water or milk and the almond extract to the frosting and mix until well combined.

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Add remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Add additional water or milk as needed to get the right consistency.

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Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. I used Ateco tip 844.

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Press broken sliced almonds onto the sides of the bottom of the frosting. Refrigerate cupcakes until ready to serve. Serve at room temperature.

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Monday, June 4, 2018

Spicy Kung Pao Noodles

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I love a quick weeknight meal. You can even make this ahead of time, because we all know Asian food is better as leftovers. I added some stir fried zucchini and used frozen popcorn chicken I fried up to complete the meal. Overall really tasty and comes together as a whole meal or as a side dish.

Spicy Kung Pao Noodles

(Adapted from Creme de la Crumb)


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12 ounces spaghetti, fettuccine, or linguine noodles
½ cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
4 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1-2 tablespoons chili paste (found in the Asian section of most grocery stores)
⅓ cup cold water + 1 tablespoon cornstarch
¼ cup peanuts
2 green onions, thinly sliced


Cook noodles according to package instructions. Drain and set aside.

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In a large skillet whisk together soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, sugar, and chili paste and bring to a boil.

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In a small bowl whisk together cold water and cornstarch. Stir into skillet and bring back to a boil, then reduce to medium low heat.

Stir noodles, peanuts, and green onions into the sauce.

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Serve immediately.

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