Tag Archives: Italian

Chicken Lasagna

Chicken lasagna….. Honestly there is nothing as such! it is just a variation made by people who prefer chicken over beef. I can eat it, like it but I can never give it the place of traditional beef lasagna 🙂

The recipe below is a very Pakistani version of Lasagna, loaded with cheese, overused herbs & garlic & of course black olives, because that it what makes every recipe Italian or Mediterranean in Pakistan 😀  but it really handy for kids play dates, birthdays, tea parties & all kind of showers.

Ayesha’s Kitchen

 

Ingredients:

FOR RED SAUCE

  • 750 gms chicken mince
  • 2 tbspns ginger garlic paste
  • ½ cup oil
  • 1 cup fresh button mushrooms (sliced) (optional)
  • 2 cans tomato
  • ½ cup tomato paste
  • 1 tbspn dried Italian herb mix
  • ½ cup sweet chilli sauce
  • Salt & pepper to taste

FOR WHITE/ BACHAMEL SAUCE

  • 50 gms butter
  • 1 tbspn heapful plain flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup cooking cream
  • 1 cup cheese mix (cheddar, mozzarella & parmesan) (shredded)
  • A pinch of salt & pepper
  • A generous pinch of chicken salt

FOR LASAGNA

  • 1 packet/ carton instant lasagna sheets
  • 1.5 cups cheese mix (cheddar, mozzarella & parmesan) (shredded)
  • Capsicum (cut into slices)
  • Tomato (cut into slices)
  • Some sliced black olives
  • Italian herb mix mixed with red chilli flakes to garnish

Method

FOR RED SAUCE

  1. Heat oil in a wide sauce pan and fry ginger garlic paste until it gives a cooked look which is light gold and light crispy. Add chicken mince, break it into pieces while cooking until all the moisture dries and oil oozes out. Add tomato paste, canned tomatoes, sweet chilli sauce, salt, pepper & Italian herb mix and let it simmer until the tomatoes break down and the mixtures starts looking like Bolognese sauce. (on low – medium heat – the process should take around 30 minutes)
  2. Add mushrooms and let it cook on low heat for further 5 minutes. (We didn’t add mushrooms with chicken because no one likes over cooked mushrooms)
  3. Remove from heat and let it cool.

FOR BECHAMEL SAUCE

  1. Mix milk & cream.
  2. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat and add flour. Cook until the flour is light gold in color. Gradually add half n half (milk & cream mixture) with constant whisking until all the mixture is poured. Continue whisking until the sauce begins to thicken. Add cheese and continue mixing.
  3. Add salt, pepper & chicken salt, stir & remove from heat. Let it cool until needed.

FOR LASAGNA

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  2. Now is the fun part….. “assembling lasagna”. In a rectangular Pyrex baking tray, lay a thin layer of bechamel sauce, followed by Bolognese sauce and lasagna sheets. This layer of sauce at the bottom will help in the cooking of lasagna sheet by providing a moist environment.
  3. Continue layering until the final layer is red sauce. Add shredded cheese on top with some capsicum & tomato rings, sprinkle some Italian herb mix and bake on the middle rack of the oven for 30 – 35 minutes, until the lasagna sheets are cooked through & the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  4. Take the dish out of the oven and let it rest for 7 – 8 minutes before cutting into portions.
  5. Serve.

Chicken Francaise

Chicken francaise is a very popular American – Italian dish which is available in nearly all the cafes and restaurants in America. In general it is very difficult and boring to eat chicken breast but in this dish I like the subtle lemony sauce over crumbed, soft and succulent chicken breast. Give it a try and I am sure you will love it….

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 2 chicken breasts (cut into butterfly cut) (small size)
  • Salt & cracked pepper
  • Oil

FOR COATING 1

  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 tbspn corn flour
  • Some chicken salt to season

FOR EGG COATING

  • 2 eggs (whisked)
  • 4 tbspns finely grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbspns chopped parsley

FOR SAUCE

  • 1 knob of butter
  • 1 cup chicken stalk
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • 2 tbspns chopped parsley

Method:

  • Cut the chicken breast into butterfly cut or just in two fillets and season with some salt and pepper. Put each piece in the zip lock bag and pound with the meat hammer until thin and flat.
  • Take some flour on a shallow plate and season with some chicken salt, and prepare the egg mixture in a shallow plate by mixing everything.
  • Heat some oil in a pan.
  • Take one chicken breast, roll it in flour and then shake off the access and dip it in egg mixture and fry on medium heat for 3 minutes per side.
  • Do the same with all the chicken pieces and then in the same pan add the chicken stalk and lemon juice and let it simmer to half. Add parsley and butter. When the sauce begins to get thick add the fried chicken and cook 1 minute per side so the sauce penetrates in the chicken.
  • Serve hot with pouring the extra sauce on top of the chicken.

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Spaghetti Bolognese

Spaghetti Bolognese is one of favorite pastas. I don’t make it with wine but use extra beef broth instead. The art of this sauce is that it is simmered over low heat for atleast 4 hours until all the flavours and all the seasonings melt in. Super LOVE ❤

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 500 gms spaghetti (al dente)
  • 500 gms beef mice
  • 2 tbspns minced garlic
  • 1 large onion (chopped)
  • 250 gms button mushrooms (chopped) (optional)
  • 2 carrots (chopped)
  • 1 celery stick (chopped)
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 500 ml passata
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 1 tbspn brown sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • Cracked black pepper to taste
  • 2 tbspns chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tbspns chopped parsley
  • 1 tbspn chopped thyme
  • 1 tspn oregano

Method

  • Heat oil and add onion, fry until translucent and add garlic. Stir fry for a minute and add beef mince. Break the beef mince with the spoon and stir fry until it starts changing the color. Add all the veggies, herbs and spices and mix.
  • After 5 minutes, add beef broth and passata and cook covered on low heat for 4 hours until all the flavors melt and mix in it and the sauce reduce.
  • After 4 hours of simmering, serve hot with boiled spaghetti. Either mix the sauce in the pasta or over the pasta and serve with grated parmesan cheese.
  • Serve hot.

Chicken Parma Tenders

Just a light version of Chicken parmigiana. I don’t like the thick chicken breast piece so I have used tenders, it makes the recipe lighter and more fun!

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 4 chicken tenderloins
  • some salt
  • some pepper
  • some paprika
  • some chicken salt
  • some olive oil and softened butter

FOR CRUMBING

  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • some Italian herbs (chopped fine)
  • 1 cup flour (seasoned with salt and pepper)
  • 1 egg + 2 tbspns milk (whisked)

FOR TOPPING

  • 4 tbspns Napolitano sauce
  • 1 cup freshly grated mozzarella
  • ¼ cup freshly shaved parmesan

TO SERVE

  • Some greens
  • Some asparagus
  • Or garden salad/ Greek salad

 

Method:

  • Put chicken tenders in a zip lock bag and pound with a meat hammer until flat and thin.
  • Season with some salt, pepper, chicken salt and paprika on both sides and keep aside.
  • Meanwhile get your oven preheated on broiling mode at 200 degrees Celsius and get your crumbing station ready, 1. Seasoned flour in a flat dish, 2. Egg wash in a shallow dish and 3. Breadcrumbs.
  • Now with the help of fork, take one tender, coat it in flour, shake off the excess, dip it in egg wash and then crumbs. Coat each and every naked bit of it and keep it on a tray.
  • Do the same with rest of the tenders.
  • Heat a frying pan and splash some olive oil and place the chicken tenders on the pan. 2.5 minutes per side. When you are about to change the side, add a small knob of butter. This will give a buttery flavour and extra crunch and color to the bread crumbs.
  • Meanwhile, get your baking tray ready lined with parchment paper. Transfer the tenders to the baking tray, smear a tablespoon of Napoli sauce on each tender, then some fresh shaves of parmesan and then generous amount of freshly grated mozzarella.
  • Broil for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
  • Serve hot with greens.
  • Enjoy.

Italian Meatloaf

My TOP favorite dinner…. it is so moist and juicy and the glaze is just awesome! ❤

Ayesha's Kitchen

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 2 kilos of ground beef
  • 1 tbspn of Olive Oil
  • 1 Onion, finely choppes
  • 3 Cloves of Garlic, minced
  • 2 bread slices
  • ¼ cup of Milk
  • ¼ cup of Chopped Parsley
  • 1 cup of Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg
  • Dash of Worcesteshire Sauce
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste

FOR GLAZE

  • ¾ cup of Ketchup
  • 2 tbspns of Tomato Paste
  • ¼ cup of Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp of Dried Mustard
  • 1 tsp of Paprika
  • 1 tsp of Granulated Garlic
  • 1 tsp of Granulated Onion

Method

  • Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
  • In a sauté pan over medium heat, cook the onion and garlic in the olive oil for about 6 to 8 minutes or until soft and translucent, allow to cool completely.
  • In a small bowl, put the slices of bread and pour the milk over them, let them sit for a few minutes or until the bread soaks up all the milk.
  • In a large bowl, combine the beef, the milk soaked bread, cooked onion and garlic, parsley, parmiggiano, worchesteshire sauce, eggs, salt and pepper. Mix until everything is well combined but don’t over mix and compact the mixture too much otherwise your meatloaf will be tough.
  • Place a cooling rack over a baking sheet (or use a broiler pan) and place the meat mixture onto it and form it into a loaf, set aside.

1

  • In a small bowl, mix together all the ingredients for the glaze. Smear half of it evenly over the top and reserve the rest.
  • Bake the meatloaf for 50 minutes, then smear the rest of the sauce on top and put it back in the oven to bake for another 15 minutes.

Chicken Alfredo Pasta Bake

A very easy, quick and fancy recipe which everyone will love and wonder how much effort you have put in but really all you have done is mix the stuff at the right time over right heat 😀  ❤

Ayesha's Kitchen

Ayesha’s Kitchen

Ingredients:

FOR SAUCE

  • 600 mL cooking cream
  • 2 chicken breasts cut into strips
  • 1 tspn garlic powder
  • ½ tspn onion powder
  • 1 cup sharp parmesan cheese (shredded)
  • 100 gms butter
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup green onions shopped
  • 1 chicken stock cube/ 1 tbspn chicken salt
  • 1 tbspn cracked black pepper
  • Salt to taste (be careful, because parmesan cheese is salty and we are adding chicken salt as well)

FOR PASTA

  • 500 gms pasta cooked to al dente
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • ½ cup cheddar cheese (shredded)
  • 2 tbspns heapful (parmesan cheese)
  • Few sprigs green onion chopped

Method:

  • Boil pasta, run through some cold water and keep aside.
  • Preheat oven in broil mode to 200 degrees Celsius.
  • Measure the cheeses, mix them and keep the blend in refrigerator.
  • For alfredo, melt butter in a pan and fry chicken until its white, add salt, pepper, chicken salt, garlic powder, onion powder and mushrooms and cook until mushrooms are cooked at well. Add cream and bring it to boil.
  • Add parmesan cheese and mix well until the cheese is melted and the sauce is thickened. Add pasta and mix. Remove from heat and transfer to your Pyrex baking dish. Top with the cheese blend and broil from 15 – 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted and gives that crusty golden color.
  • Garnish with some chopped scallions and serve hot.