Chicken with Goat Cheese Cream Sauce over Herbed Rice

This is a family favorite. I like to use boneless skinless thighs because we like dark meat. You can use breasts or chicken on the bone. Just be sure to adjust cooking times for meat on the bone. This is also a pretty budget friendly meal. It’s great served with a crisp green salad. I make it in about 30 minutes.

Start the rice:
2 C basmati rice
1/2 C slivered almonds
2 TB Summer savory
2 TB tarragon
4 C stock or water (if using water, add salt after rice is cooked to develop the flavor)

In a hot pan, toast the almonds. Stir and heat for 3 minutes until the nuts release a nice aroma. Add rice. Toast 2 minutes more. Add herbs and liquid. Stir well. Cover and reduce to low. Simmer until rice is cooked through.

For the Chicken and Sauce:

1 lb chicken pieces, rinsed and dried
8 oz mushrooms, sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
2 oz goat cheese
olive oil

Seasoned Flour:
1/2 C brown rice flour
2 tsp black pepper
zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp thyme
2 tsp salt

Heat a little oil in a large saute pan on medium high. Dredge chicken pieces in flour mixture and saute until a nice brown crust is on both sides. About 12 minutes. Remove chicken from pan.

Add onions, 2 TB olive oil, and a pinch of salt. Sweat the onions to translucent. Add mushrooms. Cook 4 minutes more. Add any leftover seasoned flour. Stir to make a roux. Add water to make a sauce, about 3/4 C. I don’t use stock here because the flavor of the seasoned flour is very intense. Then stir in the 2 oz goat cheese. Stir until smooth.

Add the chicken back to the pan. Cover and simmer until the chicken is cooked through.

Serve chicken and cream sauce over rice.

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Watermelon Radish and Goat Cheese Salad

Watermelon radishes are awesome. This sweet find came in my CSA box so I turned it into a salad topping to swoon over.

Layer 1: 1 head green leaf lettuce, torn
Layer 2: 1 Cup sunflower seeds
Layer 3: 1 watermelon radish, shredded
Layer 4: 1 Cup goat cheese crumbles

Dress with:

1/4 Cup red wine vinegar
1/4 Cup olive oil
1 TB raw sugar
salt and pepper

Whisk together and sprinkle over salad. Serves 2 people like me.

3 Cheese Penne with Baby Broccoli

Baked pasta dishes are the eewy gooey food gluten-free folks seem to miss the most. In the “About Gluten Free” section (visit the right side menu bar) I explain pasta brands that are a best bet for fooling even you Italian guests.

Well what do you do with the wrong brand of mushy, never right gluten-free pasta? Bake it! Baked on sauces will transform gluey mess into gooey fabulous. This cheese sauce is so velvety smooth, it could hide anything.

16 oz gluten-free penne, cooked and drained, not rinsed

1 lb sweet baby broccoli

3 Cheese Sauce:

1 TB butter
1 TB olive oil
2 TB rice flour
2 Cups milk
1/2 Cup parmesan, divided
4 oz goat cheese
4 oz mozzarella

Make a roux with the butter, oil, and flour over medium heat. Cook 3 minutes until rice flour is no longer raw. Slowly whisk in milk. When smooth, add 1/2 the parmesan and all of the goat and mozzarella cheeses. Whisk until smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat.

Cut broccoli into bite sized pieces. I cut baby broccoli a little larger because it is tender and sweet. I like the broccoli to be as long as the pasta. Place the broccoli in the bottom of your strainer. Drain pasta water over the broccoli. This will flash cook the outside of the broccoli so that it will retain its color well while baking.

Stir drained pasta and broccoli into cheese sauce. Transfer to baking dish and top with remaining parmesan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown delicious.

Eggplant Goat Cheese Gratin

Eggplant Parmesan is one of those dishes that I really miss being gluten-free. Here is a fabulous way to get your fix without the wheat. The goat cheese is soft and creamy, so you get all the ooey-gooeyness of being in restaurant. Plus, you don’t need a deep-frier for this one!

GBD = Golden Brown Delicious!

1 egg plant sliced, salted and drained
2 roma tomatoes, sliced
4 oz goat cheese
3 TB tomato sauce or strained tomatoes
3 oz shredded mozzarella
1 tsp oregano
2 tsp Italian seasoning blend
1/3 Cup rice flour
evoo for pan frying

Slice the eggplant into disks about 1/4 inch thick. Sprinkle it liberally with sea salt and let sit in a colander in the sink for about 10 minutes. Salting and draining eggplant improves the texture and helps the breading to cook up crisper.

Mix rice flour and Italian seasoning in a pie plate. Dredge eggplant slices to coat well. Fry in hot oil until crisp. Drain on separate plate.

Frying Eggplant

In the bottom of a casserole pan, spread the tomato sauce. This will keep the veggies from sticking. Layer fried egg plant, crumbled goat cheese, tomato slices, oregano, and mozzarella cheese.

Layers 1 & 2

Layers 1 thru 4

Bake at 400 degrees F for about 30 minutes, until cheeses are melted and tomato is well roasted. Serve with polenta, gluten-free pasta, or risotto.

Served over Pesto Pasta

Roasted Tomatoes Stuffed with Goat Cheese

Hot-house tomatoes are showing up in the CSA box over and over again. Fortunately, there is plenty of goat cheese in my fridge. This is a super simple appetizer or add a bean salad and have a fabulous light meal. It seems fancy, so everyone will think you worked hard. Here is the recipe per tomato so you can male as much or as little as you like.

Pre-roast the tomatoes: Wash them well, slice off the tops, and roast flat side down. Place them in a shallow baking dish drizzled with evoo. I also use my cast iron skillet for this. Roast 15 minutes at 375 degrees F.

Cool the tomatoes for a  few moments before handling to keep things in tact. They can be very squishy at this point.

Turn the roasted tomatoes over so their bald tops are face-up. Scoop out the flesh with a table spoon, removing seeds and excess fluid. (Save it for veggie stock or to toss with pasta later. Or mix it with your dog’s food, like I do.)

Sprinkle 1 tsp parmesan cheese into the cavity. Spoon in 1 oz goat cheese. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Place tomatoes cheese-side up on baking dish. Return to oven for 15 minutes until goat cheese is hot and bubbly. Let rest 3 minutes before serving.

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