Tuscan Salmon

It’s been awhile!  Although new creations and fab cooking has been taking place in the Fuller kitchen, I have neglected to update my blog.  Please forgive me!  I promise that I will make it up to you with tasty treats and easy dinners.  Today I had to share our new favorite salmon creation.  Super easy and full of all the salmon goodness.  Just wrap it all up in foil, bake, and serve.  We served up our salmon with fresh, steamed broccoli and couscous.  I love the idea of making individual salmons for our next dinner party.

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Tuscan Salmon

Salmon 1 1/2lb piece
4 Rosemary sprigs
3 T butter
1 large lemon, cut into thin slices
salt and pepper (if desired)

Place salmon filet on a large piece of aluminum foil.  Add thin “pats” of butter on top of salmon.  Place lemon slices on top of salmon. Then add your rosemary on top of lemons.
Wrap your salmon creation up tightly in aluminum foil. Bake for 25 minutes at 300 degrees.  Remove lemons and rosemary before eating.

Breakfast Hash Brown Casserole

My parents are in town!  I love having guests.  It is the perfect time to cook up my favorites that I typically don’t cook for just the three of us.  My family loves to share weekend breakfast.  This morning I cooked up one of our classic breakfast meals.  My breakfast hash brown casserole does not take a lot of prep.  I usually prepare it the night before and first thing in the morning stick it in the oven.  Today I served our casserole with turkey sausage and local strawberries.  It was a perfect way to start our day   -Amanda

Breakfast Hash Brown Casserole

1- 30oz bag of shredded hash brown potatoes

1/2 stick of butter (melted)

1 can cream of chicken

1 1/2 cup sour cream (I use light)

1/2 t salt

1/4 t pepper

3 green onions, chopped

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

1 cup corn flakes, crushed

Add butter to soup; stir until smooth.  Blend in sour cream, salt, pepper, green onions, and 1 cup shredded cheese.  Pour over hash brown potatoes and stir gently just until blended.  Spoon into butter casserole dish (9 X 13).   Bake at 350 degrees, uncovered for 30 minutes.  Combine remaining cheese and corn flakes.  Sprinkle over casserole and bake 10-15 minutes longer.

Bite-Sized Tomato & Mozzarella Salad

On this Meatless Monday, I wanted to share a favorite “meatless” salad. In the summer, I make this salad once a week to accompany pasta dishes, steaks, or even hamburgers. It perfect to bring as your side to the next neighborhood cookout. And with the 4th right around the corner, serve your salad in a blue bowl to capture all the red, white, and blue! Taste the summer!- Amanda

Bite-Sized Tomato & Mozzarella Salad

1 cup small cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1 cup fresh mozzarella, diced

4 fresh basil leaves, chopped into pieces

1 1/2 T olive oil

1 t soy sauce (we use low sodium)

1 t balsamic vinegar

pinch of sugar

freshly ground pepper

Mix together the tomatoes and mozzarella. In separate bowl, whisk together oil, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, and sugar. Toss the tomatoes and mozzarella in dressing. Then add the fresh basil. Top with fresh ground pepper.

Zucchini Tots

As Chris prepared some mean hamburgers, I whipped up some zucchini tots.  These bite-sized tots are the perfect guilt-free alternative that complete our hamburger night.  Just a little prep work and pop those tots in the oven.  Nothing to it!- Amanda

Zucchini Tots

1 cup zucchini, grated- like a cheese grater- The whole zucchini!

1 large egg

1/4 onion, diced

1/4 cup cheddar cheese

1 T parmesan, grated

1/8 cup Italian bread crumbs

1/8 cup Panko

Salt and Pepper

Take grated zucchini and by using paper towels squeeze out the excess water.  This will make sure your tots are not soggy.  No one likes a soggy tot! In a bowl combine all ingredients: egg, onion, cheese, bread crumbs, Panko,  zucchini, salt and pepper.

Prepare mini muffin pan by spraying with non-stick spray. Using a spoon, fill the muffin cups to the top. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-18 minutes, or until the top is browned and set.  Makes about 12 tots.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

After a long, hot summer day, my family wants something cool and refreshing for dinner.    I believe in the summer you need to enjoy beautiful, seasonal fruits.  We will be eating lots of fruit salads (more to come).  This yummy salad is easy and leaves everyone feeling full but not heavy.  Serve as a side dish or add grilled chicken for the main entree.  Gotta love strawberries!- Amanda  

 Strawberry Spinach Salad

1 T poppy seeds

1 1/2 t minced onion

1/2 cup white sugar

1/4 t Worcestershire

1/4 t paprika

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1 bag (10 oz) spinach

1 pint (or more) strawberries, sliced thin

In blender, combine sugar, poppy seeds, onion, Worcestershire, paprika, oil, and vinegar.  Blend well.  If seems thick, add a few drops of water.

Remove stems of spinach (or not).  Arrange on plates, top with strawberries.  Drizzle the dressing over strawberries and serve.

To give a good punch of protein, add some grilled chicken.

Amanda Jean’s Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad is another one of those items that everyone has opinion to add.  At the end of the day, you have chicken usually mayo and then all the other ingredients that you love in your chicken salad.  This is my plain “jean” chicken salad.  We have several favorites but this is an easy go to.  I’ll share our others soon.  This was a special request from Chris for Father’s Day lunch.  We love our plain “jean” chicken salad on flaky croissants.  Happy Summer!- Amanda

Amanda Jean’s Chicken Salad

1 1/2 cups chicken, cooked, finely shredded

1/2 cup celery, chopped

1/2 cup green onions, thinly sliced

1 T lemon juice, freshly squeezed

1/8 t pepper, freshly ground

1/3 cup Hellmann’s light mayo

2 T bell pepper, finely chopped

2 t prepared mustard

In a mixing bowl combine chicken, celery, green onions, lemon juice, and pepper.  Stir in mayo, bell pepper, and mustard.  Cover and chill for at least one hour.

Serve your chicken salad on crackers or our family favorite, croissants.  This makes about enough chicken salad for 4 croissant sandwiches.  Plus it makes great leftovers.

Zucchini Fries

It’s that time of year when the grills are heating up with yumminess.  I promised I would be sharing my favorites and some new summery side dishes.  This past week when Chris was grilling hamburgers we thought it was no better time to create a french fry substitute.  In about 25 minutes, I created zucchini fries that were devoured without any guilt.  This recipe is versatile and can compliment any meal.  It’s like a Choose Your Own Adventure in the kitchen.  You pick the veggies and seasonings.  Could it be any easier?  Eat your veggies! -Amanda

Zucchini Fries

Choose your Veggies– Zucchini, Carrots, Bell Peppers, Squash (you get the idea)
Choose your Seasonings– Always start with pepper and sea salt.  Just stick with one extra seasoning to make sure your veggies don’t come out crazy! Need some ideas: paprika, cumin, cayenne, crushed red peppers, thyme, rosemary, sage.  You can also use premixed spice blends like Spike, Italian, Mexican, Old Bay.

Cut your veggies into 3-inch sticks.  Try to keep the same thickness to help even out cooking.
Now it’s time to play with your seasonings.  Start with pepper and easy on the sea salt.  Then get creative with a seasoning that excites your palate or compliments the main dish you have planned.  This time I used freshly ground pepper, sea salt and Spike (a favorite premixed spice blend).
Lightly toss your veggie with olive oil (not too much) and the herbs and spices.
Spread your seasoned veggies over a baking sheet that is lined with parchment paper and a light layer of olive oil.  Bake at 425 degrees for about 20 minutes (flipping halfway through) or until golden and slightly browned at the edges.

Basic (Greek Yogurt) Coleslaw

There is something about coleslaw.  It seems every family has a special way of making their slaw.  Regions have inspired types of coleslaw and generations have perfected the creation.  I am always typing new coleslaw recipes.  Everyone has their own way of doing it.  This basic coleslaw was a hit with our family.  I thought the greek yogurt changed the elements plus you didn’t have to add all that mayo.  The complimentary touch was the cider vinegar.  Serve this slaw up with your favorite barbecue.  I promise no great-great grandmother will bat an eye at you trying something new! – Amanda


Basic (Greek Yogurt) Coleslaw 

½ cabbage, sliced thin
¼ cup red onion, minced
¼ t salt
1 t cider vinegar
½ t sugar
½ t Dijon mustard
1/8 t ground black pepper
1 carrot, shredded
2 T fresh parsley leaves, minced
1 (7-ounce container) plain Greek yogurt (I used Chobani- Fat Free)
2 T mayo

In a large bowl, stir together the cabbage, onion, salt, vinegar, and sugar. Set aside. This allows time for the cabbage and onion to slightly pickle.  When ready for the meal, add the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine.  It’s ready to serve!  If you want to make ahead of time, feel free to add all ingredients at the same time.  Both ways are still delicious!

Shredded BBQ Chicken

Memorial Day weekend marks the official beginning of summer!  My mind begins to think about all the yummy summer foods our family enjoys.  Throughout the coming weeks I will be sharing favorites from our table.  These recipes allow you soak up the sun and spend little time in the kitchen.  You will begin to learn that Chris has a little “Bobby Flay” attitude around the grill.  While he is the master of the grill, I play with fun side items to make our meals come alive.  There are times that we can’t make it to the grill and still want some yummy barbecue.  This Shredded BBQ Chicken will change your life.  There is no thinking involved and the outcome is delicious.  Serve as mouthwatering small sandwiches or individually with your favorite BBQ sides.  You will enjoy your leftovers the next day.  Here’s to summer!- Amanda

Shredded BBQ Chicken

3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 6 large)
1 T onion powder
1 T smoked paprika
1 t garlic powder
1/2 t salt
1/2 t pepper
8 oz of beer* (I used Stella Artois)
32 oz barbecue sauce (I used Mark’s “Red” Sauce- Louisville, KY local- Our new favorite)

Season chicken with onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper. Add to crockpot, then add beer and 24 ounces of barbecue sauce. Cook on low for 8 hours, tossing once or twice if desired. After 8 hours, shred and add remaining barbecue sauce. Toss chicken to coat and let sit for 10-15 minutes before serving to absorb everything. This chicken is delicious on your favorite rolls.  We used sweet Hawaiian rolls.  I tossed up some coleslaw and dill pickle spears.  Great leftovers the next day!
*You can substitute beer with water.  I have found beer to tenderize the meat.  And we all know that alcohol cooks out, just in case you were worried.

Meatless Monday: Skillet Chard, White Beans, & Gnocchi

On this Meatless Monday, we cooked up a delicious one skillet dinner.  Gnocchi is one of my favorites.  The combination of chard, tomatoes, and white beans gives this whole wheat gnocchi just the right shock. Then top it all with gooey mozzarella.  YUM!  Serve with a mixed green salad with vinaigrette. If you are worried about chard exchange it for spinach.  Enjoy Meatless Monday!- Amanda

Skillet Chard, White Beans, & Gnocchi

1 T plus 1 t extra-virgin olive oil, divided

16-ounce package whole wheat gnocchi

1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced

4 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup water

6 cups chopped chard leaves, about 1 small bunch

15-ounce can diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings

15-ounce can white beans, rinsed

1/4 t freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

1/4 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

Heat 1 T olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add gnocchi and cook, stirring often, until plumped and slightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl.

Add the remaining 1 t olive oil and onion to the pan and cook, stirring, over medium heat for 2 minutes. Stir in garlic and water. Cover and cook until the onion is soft for 4 to 6 minutes. Add chard and cook, stirring, until starting to wilt about 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, beans, and pepper. Bring to a simmer. Stir in the gnocchi and sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan. Cover and cook until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling, about 3 minutes.


Look at that Beautiful Rainbow Chard