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Recipe: One-Pot Tuscan Chicken aka: Marry Me Chicken

Recipe: One-Pot Tuscan Chicken aka: Marry Me Chicken

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil
34 large chicken breasts
Kosher salt
ground pepper
For the sauce
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1 small yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp dried thyme
1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, sliced in half
2 cups baby spinach
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup marinated artichoke hearts, chopped
½ cup sun-dried tomatoes in oil, chopped
¼ cup capers
1 ½ cups heavy cream
¾ cup chicken or vegetable broth
splash dry white wine
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
freshly chopped basil

Directions

Heat the oil in a 12 inch cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper. Add the chicken to the skillet and cook 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Transfer to a clean plate.

In the same skillet, reduce the heat to medium add the butter. Sauté the onion for 3 minutes. Add the garlic, sauté for 2 minutes. Mix in the thyme and oregano.

Mix in the tomatoes, sauté for 4 minutes. Mix in the spinach, cook 2 minutes until wilted. Add the mushrooms, cook for 2 minutes. Mix in the artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes and capers. Cook for 3 minutes.

Mix in the cream, broth and wine. Bring the sauce to a boil then to a simmer. Simmer for 7 minutes. In the last 2 minutes, mix in the parmesan. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Add the chicken into the sauce. Simmer for about 10 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Top with fresh basil and any extra sun-dried tomatoes and capers. Serve immediately with pasta, rice, garlic bread or baguette.

~ Marla Meridith

Cran Raspberry Mimosas

Celebrate the New Year or enjoy for brunch these Cranberry Raspberry Mimosas are absolutely delicious! A festive cocktail recipe that will add JOY to any occasion.

6 cocktails

1 cup sweetened cranberry raspberry juice
1 bottle dry Champagne or sparkling wine (Prosecco or cava)
fresh raspberries
fresh mint

Pour 1/4 cup (2 ounces) crane raspberry juice into each Champagne flute. Top with Champagne, a few raspberries and fresh mint.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Sparkling Pear Champagne Cocktail

This sparkling cocktail is the perfect way to ring in the New Year or any special occasion.

2 cocktails

2 oz pear juice (no added sugar)
2 oz Poire Williams (pear brandy)
8 oz chilled dry Champagne or sparkling wine (Prosecco or Cava)
thinly sliced fresh pear, for garnish (optional)

Pour the pear juice and Poire Williams into two Champagne flutes. Top with Champagne. Garnish with fresh pear slices.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Apple Cider Mojitos

The flavors of fall and winter combine in this quenching and delicious Apple Cider Mojitos cocktail. A great recipe for entertaining and holiday parties.

2 cocktails

–cinnamon brown sugar simple syrup
1 cup light brown sugar
2 cinnamon sticks
1 cup water
–Apple Cider Mojito
1/2 lemon
3 sprigs fresh mint
1/4 cup apple cider
1/4 cup cinnamon brown sugar simple syrup
1/4 cup gold rum
splash of club soda
–for garnish
fresh mint, apple slices, pomegranate and cinnamon

–Cinnamon Brown Sugar Simple Syrup
In a small saucepan over medium heat bring the water and sugar to a boil. Stir so the sugar dissolves. Add the cinnamon sticks. Remove the pot from the heat and let the mixture cool to room temperature, the flavors from the cinnamon sticks will infuse the simple syrup. Once cooled discard the cinnamon sticks. Pour into a mason jar and store in the refrigerator until ready to use. This simple syrup can be stored in the fridge for up to a month.
–Apple Cider Mojito
Add the lemon and mint to a cocktail shaker. Using a muddler, press out the juices from the lime and mint.
Add the apple cider, simple syrup, rum and a handful of ice to the shaker.
Cover and shake until the cocktail is well combined.
Fill a rocks glass halfway with crushed ice. Pour the cocktail into the glass and top with club soda and the garnishes.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Chickpea Stuffed Acorn Squash

This Vegan Chickpea Stuffed Acorn Squash is a deliciously healthy main for plant based diets. Filled with veggies, grain free, gluten and dairy free.

2-4 servings

2 medium acorn squash
4 tbsp olive oil
Salt and black pepper, to taste
—CHICKPEA STUFFING
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup celery, finely chopped
1/2 cup carrots, finely chopped
1/2 cup crimini mushrooms, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp Tamari or soy sauce
1/2 tsp freshly chopped rosemary
1 can (15.5 ounce) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 tsp sweet (or spicy) paprika
1/4 tsp turmeric
—toppings
freshly chopped parsley

Preheat oven to 400˚F with the rack in the middle.
Wash squash. Pierce the squash several times with a sharp knife. Microwave on high for 5 minutes or until soft enough to slice. Let cool a few minutes, slice in half and scrape out the seeds with a fork. Discard the seeds. Gently slice the bottoms so the squash lay flat in a baking dish.
Make 10 slits inside each half. Rub 1 tablespoon of olive oil into each half, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Place squash on a baking pan, pour 1/2 cup of water onto the bottom of the pan, and bake for 35 minutes at or until soft.
While the squash are cooking: In a 10 inch cast iron skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions. Sauté until softened and fragrant a 4-5 minutes.
Add the garlic, carrots, celery, mushrooms and soy sauce, and sauté for 3-4 minutes
Add the rosemary, chickpeas, cumin, paprika and garlic powder. Sauté for another 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Once squash is finished cooking, remove from oven, place on a serving plate. Fill each half with the stuffing, serve immediately.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Skillet Salmon with Bacon and Lentils

This gluten-free, healthy Skillet Salmon with Bacon & Lentils is protein packed and completely delicious! Perfect for family dinners and for entertaining guests.

4-5 servings

–for the lentils
4 slices thick cut bacon, chopped small + extra for garnish
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled & chopped small
2 celery stalks, chopped small
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
3 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 cup French green lentils
1/4 cup Sherry vinegar
splash of dry Marsala wine
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
season to taste with salt and pepper
–for the salmon
4-5 (4 ounce) boneless salmon filets, skin on
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp unsalted butter
chopped parsley and crispy bacon for garnish

Add the bacon to the a 12 inch cast iron skillet and cook over medium heat until the fat renders about 7 minutes and bacon is lightly browned. Add the olive oil, onion, carrots and celery. Cook about 5 minutes until the vegetables soften. Add the garlic, rosemary, broth and lentils. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Stir in the vinegar, wine, mustard salt and pepper. Cook for 25-30 minutes until the lentils are tender, stirring occasionally. Add more broth if needed to soften the lentils, season to taste with salt and pepper.
Ten minutes before the lentils are done cooking. Cook the salmon.
Pre-heat a 10 inch cast iron with the butter and oil over medium high heat. Season the filets with some salt and pepper. Cook skin side down for minutes then flip and cook just a few minutes more until the salmon is done to your liking.
Once the lentils have soaked up all of the cooking liquid, place the salmon on the top and serve immediately.
Garnish with crispy bacon and fresh parsley.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries

Save the calories and skip the fries with this Healthy, Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries recipe. All you need are 3 ingredients, potatoes, oil and salt!

4 servings

1 1/2 pounds (about 3 large) Russet potatoes, cut into 1/4-1/2 inch matchsticks
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
–optional toppings for during baking
garlic salt
garlic powder
smoked paprika
–optional toppings to toss fries with after baking
chopped rosemary
chopped parsley
hot pepper flakes
parmesan cheese

Clean and pat dry the potatoes. Do not remove the skin.
Slice into desired thickness.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F with the rack on the lower level.
In a large bowl toss the potatoes with the oil, salt and pepper and any other toppings you like.
Place on the baking sheet in a single layer.
Bake for 25-35 minutes tossing the fries in the middle of baking time.
Serve immediately with ketchup and any extra seasonings. Toss with parmesan or chopped fresh herbs if desired.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries

Save the calories and skip the fries with this Healthy, Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries recipe. All you need are 3 ingredients, potatoes, oil and salt!

4 servings

1 1/2 pounds (about 3 large) Russet potatoes, cut into 1/4-1/2 inch matchsticks
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
–optional toppings for during baking
garlic salt
garlic powder
smoked paprika
–optional toppings to toss fries with after baking
chopped rosemary
chopped parsley
hot pepper flakes
parmesan cheese

Clean and pat dry the potatoes. Do not remove the skin.
Slice into desired thickness.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F with the rack on the lower level.
In a large bowl toss the potatoes with the oil, salt and pepper and any other toppings you like.
Place on the baking sheet in a single layer.
Bake for 25-35 minutes tossing the fries in the middle of baking time.
Serve immediately with ketchup and any extra seasonings. Toss with parmesan or chopped fresh herbs if desired.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries

Save the calories and skip the fries with this Healthy, Quick, Easy & Crispy Baked French Fries recipe. All you need are 3 ingredients, potatoes, oil and salt!

4 servings

1 1/2 pounds (about 3 large) Russet potatoes, cut into 1/4-1/2 inch matchsticks
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
–optional toppings for during baking
garlic salt
garlic powder
smoked paprika
–optional toppings to toss fries with after baking
chopped rosemary
chopped parsley
hot pepper flakes
parmesan cheese

Clean and pat dry the potatoes. Do not remove the skin.
Slice into desired thickness.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F with the rack on the lower level.
In a large bowl toss the potatoes with the oil, salt and pepper and any other toppings you like.
Place on the baking sheet in a single layer.
Bake for 25-35 minutes tossing the fries in the middle of baking time.
Serve immediately with ketchup and any extra seasonings. Toss with parmesan or chopped fresh herbs if desired.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Maple Vanilla Bean Whipped Cream

I use this simple and delicious Maple Vanilla Bean Whipped Cream in my morning coffee and on ice cream, pie and anything I can think of!

makes 3 1/2 cups

2 cups cold whipping cream
1/4 – 1/3 cup pure maple syrup (sweeten to taste)
1 vanilla bean or 1 tsp vanilla bean paste

Chill the bowl and whisk of a stand mixer.
If using the vanilla bean paste see notes.
If using the vanilla bean: Pour the cream into a medium bowl. Scrape the vanilla bean seeds into the cream and whisk together. Cover and refrigerate for one hour.
Pour the cream through a fine mesh sieve into the chilled bowl of the stand mixer.
Whisk the cream on medium-low for a few minutes until it starts to thicken. Add the maple syrup.
Increase the speed to medium high and continue to whisk until the cream thickens to your liking.
Use immediately or refrigerate and use within a few hours. (If you made the cream very thick it will last a few days.)

If using the vanilla bean paste you can cut right to whisking the cream. Simple add the vanilla when you add the maple syrup. This will cut out lots of time if you are in a hurry!

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Rhubarb Applesauce

Instead of a heavy dessert try this Healthy and delicious Vegan Maple Rhubarb Applesauce recipe. Great for breakfast, brunch, back to school and snacks.

6 cups

5 Gala, Honey Crisp or Pink Lady apples
4 cups chopped rhubarb
1/2 cup pure maple syrup or more to taste
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup water

Place all the ingredients in a large Dutch oven or soup pot. Bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer for 35-40 minutes. Partially cover with a lid during the simmer.
Remove from the heat and let cool a bit. Place 1/2 the mixture into a blender and puree on a sauce setting. Repeat with the other half. Serve warm or cold.

~ Marla Meridith

Recipe: Maple Iced Coffee

We love this delicious summer refresher. The maple whipped cream makes it extra special! Great for entertaining.

1 iced coffee

–maple whipped cream
1 pint cold heavy whipping cream
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
–coffee
8 ounces cold brew iced coffee
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
2 tbsp half and half
ice
–cocktail option
2 ounces vodka or bourbon

Make the whipped cream: Add the cream and maple syrup to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on low for a few minutes until the cream starts to thicken. Increase the speed to medium, then to high. Whip until you have still peaks about 5-6 minutes.
For the iced coffee: Pour the maple syrup and half and half into a high ball glass. Pour the iced coffee (and alcohol if using) over that. Top with ice and a generous scoop of maple whipped cream.

~ Marla Meridith