Open-Faced Chicken Salad with Charred Corn Salsa

I may be jumping the gun a little bit…I’m cooking as though we are in the midst of summer. But then again, I’ve never really been one to follow the rules, if there even are really any rules of the seasons. Nowadays, you can get pretty much any fruit or vegetable all year long, you know? And I had such a craving for charred corn, that I had to pick up some corn this weekend. That led to charred jalapeños, which led to grilled chicken, and then it just snowballed into this open-faced chicken sandwich with charred corn salsa.

The weather couldn’t have been more perfect this weekend at the cabin, making me feel as though we were already in the summer months. I had every single window open all weekend long, clearing the winter doldrums right out of the cabin. I’d wake up every morning to the sound of a grosbeak singing it’s sweet song, feeling happy and content, until I stuck my feet out from under the blankets, and the cold air told me that it was just too soon to sleep with every window open, even when the steam from my breath didn’t give it away! But that didn’t stop me from doing it again the second night! Like I said, I’m jumping the gun, and that’s totally okay by me! Cold tootsies never hurt anyone, right?

I spent the whole weekend trying to find the bird with that beautiful little song that woke me up every morning, overlooking a family of pretty little black and white birds with red breasts, the whole time thinking that they were woodpeckers! After endless hours of searching the trees, I finally stopped to look at those black and white birds perched on the suet, and realized that they were not woodpeckers. I looked them up in my bird book, saw that they were grosbeaks, and then googled their sound on my phone. Sure enough, what was right in front of my face the whole time, is what I spent hours looking for! The sweetest little things, their chatter and song just makes me happy…and along with this sandwich, they’re already my favorite part of what is soon to be summer!

So, this sandwich… is most definitely light and fresh, but with an attitude! There is a definite sweetness from the corn, tomatoes and dressing, with a hint of charred flavor from the corn and jalapeños, savory from the chicken and buttery garlic toast, a bite from the onions and jalapenos, a tang from the olives and blue cheese, and a creaminess from the avocados and eggs. I’m not kidding when I say that it’s a different flavor with every bite!

Life is good. It’s a “Sometimes what you’re looking for has been right under your nose without you even knowing it…” kind of good.

Open-Faced Chicken Salad with Charred Corn Salsa
 
Author:
Serves: 2 Servings
Ingredients
Charred Corn Salsa
  • 2 ears corn, shucked
  • ½ to 1 whole jalapeno
  • 12 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp red onion, minced
  • ¼ cup Variety of kalamata and green olives, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup sweet red or yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 avocado, cut into ½” cubes
  • 1-2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
The Dressing
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 tsp ground mustard
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp dill weed
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
The Garlic Toast
  • 1 baguette, sliced lengthwise
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp parsley
The Sandwich
  • Spring greens
  • 2 boneless chicken breasts, grilled (fully cooked, and sliced)
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
  • Crumbled blue cheese
Instructions
Charred Corn Salsa
  1. You can char the corn and jalapeño a couple of different ways. Put it directly over the flame on your stove, grill it, put it in a hot skillet over a fire or on your stove. For this, I used my skillet, and place the corn and jalapeños in the heated skillet, turning them until they had blackened marks on each side.
  2. When finished charring, carefully cut the corn from the cob. Remove the char from the jalapeño, slice it in half, clean out the seeds, and mince. (Divide it in half if you don’t want to use the whole pepper in the salsa, depending on your desired heat).
  3. Place the corn and the jalapeño in a medium bowl. Add the tomatoes, onion, olives, garlic, red or yellow pepper (or both), avocado, parsley, olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, salt and pepper.
  4. Stir to mix. Place in refrigerator until ready to use.
The Dressing
  1. Pour the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, ground mustard, sugar, Italian seasoning, dill weed, paprika, garlic, salt and pepper into a pint size mason jar. Cover. Shake until fully combined. Refrigerate until ready to use. (Shake again before pouring over sandwich)
The Garlic Toast
  1. Place the baguette halves under the broiler of your oven until golden brown. While the baguettes are under the broiler, mix the butter, garlic, and parsley together. When the baguettes are browned, remove from broiler, and spread with the garlic butter.
Assemble the Sandwich
  1. Place the garlicky baguette halves on the serving dish. Top with as much spring greens as you desire. Place the chicken slices over the spring greens. Divide the salsa between the two sandwiches. Sprinkle with chopped hard boiled eggs, and crumbled blue cheese. Drizzle with the dressing (as much as, or as little as you prefer).

 

Lemon Chicken

A special thank you to my friends at Hestan Home  for sharing this absolutely gorgeous pan with me! It was truly love at first sight the moment I opened the box, and I believe a love that will last forever..

You know me. And you know that I’m all about quick and easy when it comes to meals nowadays…from prep to cleanup. A simple lemon chicken with rice is one of my favorite meals to prepare, and even more so with a cooking surface that produces 35% more heat conductivity than any other aluminum-clad pan. And let’s talk about clean up… I’m not kidding when I say that a simple swish of the cloth, and the pan was clean because of its stain and scratch resistant surface! A non-stick pan that is stain and scratch resistant.  It just doesn’t get any better than that!

And although this pan is absolutely gorgeous, it’s not just another pretty face. It is state of the art, stainless cookware in molecular titanium. I mean, come on.. it’s cool to even say those words, let alone own one of these beauties!

I love this Lemon Chicken because not only is it delicious, but it is super quick and easy to prepare, with a quick sauté in butter and garlic, finished off with a squeeze of lemon. And who doesn’t love a buttery lemon sauce? Served with a lemony rice, this meal can be pulled off in about a half hour. No kidding.

Life is truly good. It’s a “Even more so with this pan on my stove…” kind of good.

Lemon Chicken
 
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
Lemon Chicken
  • 2 chicken breasts sliced in half lengthwise
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Lemon slices for garnish
Lemon Rice
  • 1 cup uncooked rice
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, and over medium heat, cook the chicken in the butter until fully cooked and golden brown on both sides. About 8 minutes on both sides. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, and parsley to the pan, and cook for another two to three minutes. Remove the chicken from the pan, leaving the lemon sauce in the pan.
  2. While the chicken is cooking, prepare the rice according to the directions on the package, using the chicken stock in place of water. When fully cooked, stir in the butter, lemon zest, lemon juice, and parsley. Add salt and pepper to your desired taste.
  3. Pour the rice into the pan with the reserved lemon sauce, and stir to combine. Add the chicken back to the pan, and cook for about three minutes to heat the chicken through. Serve immediately with lemon slices as garnish.

 

Ice Cream Layer Cake

Mother’s Day is just a week away, and do I have a wonderful surprise for you!

My friends at Le Creuset want to give one of my readers a cake stand, a teapot, and two bistro mugs!

You will receive:
One beautiful cake stand in the color of your choice
One Large Sakura Teapot
One set of two Sakura Bistro Mugs

I’m thinking about dessert for Mother’s Day, and I know that my family will love this ice cream cake!

Super easy to assemble, the outer edges of ice cream sandwiches hold a triple layer of cookies and cream ice cream, strawberry ice cream, and chocolate ice cream, all separated with crumbled oreo cookies! Dollops of sweet whipped cream hold my favorite part of any sundae… the cherry on top! The perfect dessert for your special day!

What would you serve on this pretty cake stand if you won?

Simply use the Rafflecopter below to enter! a Rafflecopter giveaway For USA residents only! Good luck!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Ice Cream Layer Cake
 
Adapted from soyummyblog.com
Author:
Serves: 8-10
Ingredients
  • 6 chocolate ice cream sandwiches
  • 6 vanilla ice cream sandwiches
  • 1 quart cookies and cream ice cream
  • 1 quart strawberry ice cream
  • 1 quart chocolate ice cream
  • 14 oz pkg Oreo Cookies, crushed and divided into thirds
  • Whipped Cream
  • Sprinkles
  • Maraschino Cherries
Instructions
  1. You will need:
  2. " springform pan, the sides lined with a long strip of parchment paper.
  3. Remove the ice cream from your freezer, and let sit at room temperature about 10 minutes so that it is soft enough to spread in the pan. Keep the ice cream sandwiches frozen until ready to cut so that they are easy to cut. If you let them soften, the ice cream will spill out of the sides of the sandwich!
  4. Cut each ice cream sandwich in half lengthwise (the long way), and cut those strips of ice cream sandwiches in half. Begin lining the inside edge of the springform pan along the parchment paper, alternating the vanilla and chocolate pieces until the whole inner edge of the pan is covered.
  5. Spread one third of the Oreo cookies into the bottom of the pan.
  6. Starting with the cookies and cream ice cream, spoon over the first layer of Oreo cookies, and spread right to the edge of the ice cream sandwich quarters.
  7. Spread one third of the Oreo cookies over the cookies and cream ice cream.
  8. The next layer of ice cream is strawberry. Spread over the second layer of Oreo cookies.
  9. Spread one third of the Oreo cookies over the strawberry ice cream.
  10. The final layer of ice cream is chocolate. Spread over the third layer of Oreo cookies.
  11. Freeze for at least two hours.
  12. When ready to serve, remove from freezer, and remove the outer edge of the springform pan. Carefully peel the parchment paper off of the cake. Pipe dollops of whipped cream around the top edge of the cake. Top the whipped cream with sprinkles, and toss some of the sprinkles around the sides of the cake. To the whipped cream and sprinkles with a maraschino cherry.
  13. Serve immediately. Freeze any leftovers!

 

Prudy is Daydreaming. Again. Chapter Four.

 

(Click the photo to find out how to make this easy cupcake bouquet!)

Easter is just around the corner, my friends!  

I’m usually not a fan of cutesy…but boy oh boy, do I love these plates.

I’m all about these Easter eggs.  They most definitely can, and they will happen this year!

 I need to learn how to make macarons.  Most adorable ever. Ever.

 If I had to leave a treat for the Easter Bunny, it would be this. But since I don’t, I can keep them all for me!

Oh. My. Gosh.  Love this bread. Love, love LOVE this bread!

Speaking of bread, I’ve always loved Easter bread

 And I’ll always end with dessert..

Salted Caramel Creme Brûlée

Last night, I decided to change things up this week, and post Daydreaming this coming Friday instead of today, because I read that it is National Caramel Day….and there was no doubt that I had to share this Salted Caramel Crème Brûlée with you today!

When I made this brûlée on Sunday, I had no idea that National Caramel Day existed! Honestly, how many national whatever days can you fit into one single day? I had to look that up, and after a very brief search, I found thirteen national holidays for today.

Thirteen.

I’m not going to list them all, but of course, it is National Caramel Day. It is National Love your Children Day, because we don’t do that any other day (rolling my eyes). There’s also a National Walking Day. And a National Dandelion Day (I kind of like that one, because I do think they’re pretty). And…National Bell Bottoms Day.

National Bell Bottoms Day.
Because the world needs to celebrate vintage pants.

I mean, really… what would possess anyone to think of that, let alone feel the need to celebrate bell bottoms? So, I had to dig a little deeper, because I wondered what it took to create a national day. Well, a true national holiday takes an act of congress. A lot of the national days are created by card companies, special interest groups, sports teams, etc….all in the name of making money. And then… you have the people who just declare it so. And everyone else jumps on that band wagon! “Hey! You like bell bottoms? Me too! Let’s go celebrate the day, and donate $20 in the name of those fun loving over exaggerated wide bottom pants! (Embarrassingly enough, I am a child of the 60’s and early 70’s, and did own a pair or two, but will deny it to my dying days if you tell anyone..).

But getting back to this Salted Caramel Creme Brûlée.  I never would have dreamed in a million years that bell bottoms would be the topic of discussion for this deliciously creamy, sweet yet salty dessert. I don’t know, it doesn’t seem fair. This should have been a talk about royalty, sophistication, and pure unadulterated love… because that’s what this dessert truly deserves. Describing it wouldn’t even do it justice, as your spoon broke through the caramelized sugar that’s sprinkled ever so lightly with sea salt, scooping up the decadent creamy caramel flavor custard, to bring a symphony of sweet and salty caramel straight to your taste buds. Eating in complete silence as everyone is utterly mesmerized by this dessert. That’s when you know it’s good. That it’s really, really good.

And it’s so super easy to make. You don’t have to be a pastry chef or an expert in your kitchen! But seriously? Let everyone think that you spent all day in the kitchen just for them!

Life is good. It’s a “So today, not only is it National Caramel Day, but I declare it to be National Prudy Day. Please send all flowers, candy and donations in care of Prudence Blank… “ kind of good.

Salted Caramel Creme Brûlée
 
Author:
Serves: 6
Ingredients
You Will Need
  • Six ramekins or jars that will hold ½ cup custard, and a 9" x 13" pan to bake them in. For the caramelized sugar, you will need a kitchen torch. No kitchen torch? It's okay! You can put the sugar topped creme brûlée under the broiler as long as you are using a ramekin or jar that is safe for the broiler!
To Start
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
To Finish
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup half and half
  • 8 large egg yolks
Topping
  • 3 tsp granulated sugar
  • Sea salt for sprinkling
Instructions
  1. In a medium sized sauce pan, combine the 1 cup heavy cream, butter, ½ cup dark brown sugar, and salt. Bring to a low boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low, and let simmer for 8 minutes stirring frequently, and taking care to not let it burn. Remove from the heat, and let sit for about ½ hour to cool.
  2. Heat oven to 325 degrees.
  3. After it has cooled, whisk the remaining heavy cream, half and half, and egg yolks into the caramel mixture. Pour the mixture into a large spouted container that will make it easy to pour the mixture into the ramekins or jars, and then pour about ½ cup of the mixture into each jar.
  4. Place the filled jars into the 9" x 13" pan, and fill the pan with hot water to come to halfway up the sides of the jars. Place in heated oven, and bake for about 35-45 minutes.
  5. You'll know that they're ready to come out of the oven, when the sides of the custard has set, and the middle is just a little bit jiggly. It will continue to set after it has been removed from the oven.
  6. Carefully remove the jars from the pan with tongs, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  7. When ready to serve, remove from the refrigerator, remove plastic wrap. Sprinkle the top of each custard with ½ tsp granulated sugar, making sure that it coats the entire top of the custard evenly. Carefully torch the sugar until it begins to bubble up and lightly brown. When the sugar has hardened, sprinkle a few granules of sea salt on top, and serve immediately.

 

Nectarine and Micro Green Salad

Here’s a quick and easy one for you! A simple Nectarine and Micro Green Salad…

The nectarines pair so deliciously with the micro greens that have a sweet, but yet a little bit of a spicy kick to them…chopped tomatoes, basil, and shaved Grana Padano, that adds its own sharp and nutty flavor to the whole experience… and then topped with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar…

I’ll tell you…your tastebuds…they’re going to go wild!! This is a perfect little meal for lunch, dinner, a snack, or even breakfast!

Yes. Breakfast!
I don’t follow the breakfast rules. Ever.
Says the girl who will guiltlessly eat spaghetti for breakfast…

Seriously, try this one. You’ll love it!

Life is good. It’s a “Stay tuned for the spaghetti for breakfast post…I’m kidding! Or am I?…” kind of good. 

 

Nectarine and Micro Green Salad
 
Author:
Serves: 2 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 large nectarines, sliced
  • 2 cups micro greens
  • 1 small tomato, seeded and chopped
  • Basil Leaves (as much as you like)
  • Shaved Grana Padano for garnish
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Sea Salt and Fresh Ground Black Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Arrange the nectarines on a plate and top with the micro greens. Sprinkle the chopped tomatoes and basil leaves around and on top of the nectarines and greens. Top with shaved Grana Padano Use as much as or as little as, to suit your personal taste! The same goes for the balsamic, salt and pepper. Use as much as you'd like to suit your taste.

 

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