Lunch With Loni

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Buffalo Chicken “Sloppy Joes” September 21, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — lonislens @ 9:00 am

Recipe courtesy of: Rachael Ray

Original recipe located at:

I have made this recipe twice using ground chicken, which the recipe calls for.  I happen to have a bunch of chicken breast packages I need to use, so I made the same recipe but using 3 chicken breasts instead.  I think it turned out well, but the ground chicken is definitely more of a true sloppy joe.  I only titled this sloppy joes because if you follow the original recipe, that’s what you wind up with!


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 pounds ground chicken or turkey breast
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped or grated
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup hot sauce (recommended: Frank’s Red Hot)
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 8 good quality burger rolls, split and toasted (I used Ciabatta rolls today, which stood up well to the sauce)
  • 1 cup blue cheese crumbles  (my husband dislikes blue cheese, so I wound up using pepper jack today and melted it onto the buns while they toasted in the oven)
  • 2 large dill pickles, chopped


Heat a large skillet with extra-virgin olive oil over medium-high heat. Add meat and break it up with wooden spoon, cook 5 to 6 minutes. Add in carrots, celery, onions and garlic, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, cook 7 to 8 minutes more. In a bowl combine the vinegar, sugar, Worcestershire, hot sauce, tomato sauce and stock. Pour into the pan and stir to combine. Simmer a few minutes more. Pile sloppy Buffalo filling onto buns and top with blue cheese and chopped pickles.

I put all the ingredients in the crockpot each time I’ve made this.  I do let the celery, onion and carrots and meat simmer on high in there (with the olive oil) until softened before adding the sauce mixture.  Otherwise you can wind up with disintegrated ground chicken (not appealing)!  I think it’s an excellent crockpot meal, but definitely doesn’t need to be on all day (I had the thawed chicken breasts in there for 2 hours on high and then shredded the chicken, put it back in and left it on low for 3 more hours, which I think is fine.  You could do it for a whole day if you used frozen chicken breasts and left it on low the entire time.  **Note: I’ve been informed by a reader that frozen chicken + low heat = bad idea. **


Chicken Parmesan a la Giada September 20, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — lonislens @ 3:00 pm

Recipe courtesy of: Giada de Laurentiis

Original reciple located at:

I have yet to try a Giada recipe that has let me down.  I first used this recipe on thin-cut boneless pork chops, but have since used it for chicken breasts as well.  Although I pounded these breasts out thinly (or so I thought), they were still quite thick and I wound up finishing the cooking in the oven so they didn’t get burned in the pan.  I definitely recommend making your breasts VERY thin. 


  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup dried Italian-style bread crumbs
  • 3/4 cups freshly grated Parmesan
  • 4 (1/2 to 3/4-inch thick) center-cut pork loin chops (each about 10 to 12 ounces)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • Lemon wedges, for serving (I didn’t use these for the chicken)


Whisk the eggs in a pie plate to blend. Place the bread crumbs in another pie plate. Place the cheese in a third pie plate. Sprinkle the pork chops generously with salt and pepper. Coat the chops completely with the cheese, patting to adhere. Dip the chops into the eggs, then coat completely with the bread crumbs, patting to adhere.

Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in a very large skillet over medium heat. Add pork chops, in batches if necessary, and cook until golden brown and the center reaches 150 degrees, about 6 minutes per side. Transfer the chops to plates and serve with lemon wedges (again, I ommited the lemon wedges). 

I served mine with whole wheat pasta and marinara sauce.  It was a very tasty dinner that was enhanced by my company, as a good friend of mine joined me!


“Real Simple” Doughnuts September 19, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — lonislens @ 3:00 pm

Recipe courtesy of: Real Simple Magazine

Original recipe located at:

I’m not going to lie, certain foods intimidate me, especially anything involving making dough.  So when I came across this recipe in Real Simple magazine I was thrilled.  No, it’s not the same as real homemade doughnuts (I’m reminiscing about the scrumptious hot from the oil fair doughnuts I used to get growing up), but they definitely satisfy a cinammon-sugar-y fried doughnut craving, and they take almost no time to make!


  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 8-count package large refrigerated biscuits (such as Pillsbury Grands)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon


  1. Heat ½ cup of the oil in a medium skillet over medium-low heat.
  2. Place the biscuits on a cutting board. Using a 1-inch round cookie cutter or shot glass, cut a hole in the center of each biscuit, reserving the extra dough for “holes.”
  3. Test the heat of the oil by dipping the edge of a doughnut in the pan. When the oil is hot enough, the edge will bubble. Place 4 of the doughnuts and holes in the skillet and cook until golden brown, 1 to 1½ minutes per side. Transfer to a wire rack or paper towel–lined plate to drain. Add the remaining oil to the skillet, reheat, and cook the remaining doughnuts and holes.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Gently toss the warm doughnuts in the mixture a few at a time. Serve warm or at room temperature.

This recipe makes 8 doughnuts, plus holes.


Crockpot Chicken Teriyaki September 16, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — lonislens @ 11:22 pm

Recipe courtesy of:  I think it was on but I can’t find it right now!

Original recipe located at: I’ll get back to you on that. 😉

Pardon the not so wonderful photo.  Something was up with my camera last night and it wasn’t focusing properly, but I was too impatient (read: it was 8pm and I was HUNGRY) to figure it out!

1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons dry sherry
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 garlic cloves, crushed with a garlic press or minced
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 pounds skinless chicken thighs (I used 1.5 lbs of chicken breasts)
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
Combine the soy sauce, sugar, sherry, vinegar, garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes and stir until the sugar dissolves.

What I did (or rather, what my wonderful husband did): Put mixture in the crockpot along with chicken breasts (cut into large chunks) and sesame seeds.  Cook on low for 4 hours.  Add stir fry veggie mix in the last 30 minutes.

What the recipe says to do:

Transfer to a resealable plastic bag and add the chicken. Seal the bag and marinate the chicken in the refrigerator, turning once, for 1 hour. The chicken can be marinated for up to 4 hours.
Heat the broiler to high. Arrange the chicken on a broiler pan skin side down and broil until brown and crispy, 8 to 10 minutes. Flip the chicken and broil until almost cooked through, about 8 minutes longer. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and cook until the seeds turn golden brown and the chicken is done, 1 to 2 minutes longer.

What I would do differently: Someone had recommended this recipe on a forum I’m on as being good for the crockpot, which I think it can be…just with minor alterations.  The chicken was a little dried out.  Next time I plan on adding 1/4 cup of chicken or beef broth to it and maybe upping the other ingredients slightly.  It just wasn’t enough liquid for the crockpot.  But the flavor was GREAT and I’d definitely make it again.   I think you could also reduce the cooking time to 2 hours since it was chunks of chicken and they were not frozen.


I’ll be back, I promise! September 14, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — lonislens @ 7:14 pm

So I have been very neglectful and I apologize.  It isn’t that I haven’t tried out new recipes, but more so that I forget to photograph them.

I will be back this week with new entries, I promise!