Tag Archives: spinach

Pesto Chicken and Ravioli

28 Jul

I bought freshly made porcini mushroom and cheese ravioli, and sweet pea ravioli packed with whole peas from Russo’s Market in Watertown, MA. The sweet pea ravioli is not always available, but when it is, it sells fast. One lady told me she will plan her dinner around the availability of the sweet pea pasta!

I am also excited about my basil plant – it’s now two feet tall! I used fresh basil to make a pesto sauce. A light sauce lets the richness of the mushrooms and the crispness of the peas shine. Shown below with grilled chicken breast.

ravioli with chicken

Spinach and basil pesto

In a food processor, pulse to blend:

  • 2 cups packed basil and spinach
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, minced

Add and continue to blend:

  • 1/2 cup (or a little less) olive oil
  • 1/2 cup pecorino-romano cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste

Sometimes I use leftover pesto to stir-fry with zucchini and summer squash. You can also freeze pesto in ice cube trays to store for longer (don’t add cheese to the pesto if you plan on freezing it).

Basil-spinach pesto

Boston Prix Fixe: Bergamot

1 Jun

My boyfriend and I went to Bergamot (118 Beacon St., Somerville, MA) for Boston Restaurant Week, but it turns out that they have a 3-course prix fixe menu all the time, anyway, for about the same price.  The restaurant is a small square room with a view of the open kitchen. Like many good Boston-area restaurants, tables are quite close together.

Service was remarkably attentive, and we had a terrific dining experience. Our meal started with complementary potato bread with to-die-for orange poppy seed butter. Rather than having a bread basket clutter your table, servers return to fill your bread plate at your request.

white bean soup

The smoked white bean soup was yummy, with black beans and a light avocado mousse, topped with cilantro.

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I had the seared local hake. It was a melt-in-your-mouth fillet over bed of crunchy hearts of palm and pale green chickpeas. It was surrounded with the complex flavours of garlic-clam sauce (mushroom, cream, pancetta) and small buttons of hon shimeji mushrooms

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Panisse fries, served with herbed ricotta cheese, were an interesting concept. From our server’s description, I expected them to be crispy, more like typical fries. However, they were more like chickpea tofu – the lightly fried blocks were creamier than polenta. My guy gobbled them all up though – the thick herbed ricotta was the perfect partner to this dish.  

creamed spinach

The creamed spinach was nicely done.

For dessert, my guy had the carrot cake. It was four small cubes of cake, with golden raisins and candied walnuts. I found the cake slightly dry.

clafoutis

The black olive clafoutis  was moist and delicious, but was just three small pieces spread across a rectangular plate,  with caramel sauce and a little scoop of grapefruit sorbet. Complimentary mini coconut pistachio madeleines finished off the meal.

The Final Word: An all-around great dining experience with wonderful service, and beautifully presented food. Appetizers and entrees have great flavours. Desserts are very small.

Bergamot on Urbanspoon

Info: Bergamot, 118 Beacon St., Somerville, MA, 02143 USA

Spinach and Broccoli Stuffed Chicken

2 Mar

Impress guests by whipping up this fancy-looking dish – just don’t tell them you did most of the prep work the day before!

spinach and feta stuffed chicken

Ingredients / Directions (serves 6)

Make Ahead
1. Start with 6 chicken breasts, pounded to about 1 cm thick. Store these in the fridge, layered between sheets of wax paper.

2. Finely chop and mix together:

  • 1/3 red onion
  • ½ head of garlic
  • 2-3 Serrano chili peppers

3. Add:

  • 1 box frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and excess liquid removed
  • handful of frozen broccoli florets, defrosted and diced
  • dash of salt, pepper
  • dash of basil

Store this veggie mixture in the fridge until needed.

Day Of
4. Preheat oven to 400°F

5. Add to veggie mixture, and combine well:

  • ½ to 1 cup feta or goat cheese
  • 1 – 2 cups nonfat plain Greek yogurt

6. Divide veggie and cheese mixture onto each chicken breast. Fold chicken over mixture.

7. Place chicken breasts on a lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with basil and crumbled cheese.

8. Bake approximately 30 minutes.

Easy Vegetable Frittata

2 Dec

This is so easy: cook as many veggies as you like, or however much fits in your pan. Goat cheese adds a flavourful kick and makes this quick dish taste fancy.

Spinach broccoli frittata

Ingredients

  • 9 eggs (low-cholesterol version: 4 whole eggs + 9 egg whites)
  • Your choice of veggies, for example:
    • 8 oz spinach leaves + 1 handful frozen broccoli florets, defrosted, or
    • 8 oz spinach leaves + 1/2 onion, diced + 1/2 red pepper, cut into slivers
  • 1 plum tomato, sliced
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 oz goat cheese
  • ¼ tsp. dill
  • ¼ tsp. thyme
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat eggs and milk together. Sprinkle with dill, thyme, and pepper.
  3. In an oven-proof skillet, sauté vegetables in olive oil.
  4. Pour egg mixture over veggies. Lift veggies slightly to allow egg to flow underneath.
  5. When egg mixture is about half set, top with tomato slices and sprinkle with goat cheese.
  6. Bake in oven for 14-15 minutes, until puffy.
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