Parmesan Chicken with Balsamic Vinegar Reduction



Have you been to Italy, or always wanted to visit – the great food, the wine, the people, the countryside, and so much history?  Oh my goodness!  Wish we could pack our bags today.

italy countryside vineyard, italian recipes, balsamic vinegar

Alas, a visit to Italy is not in our near future, but we are thrilled to review this Balsamic Vinegar Condiment from Modena, Italy  — aged for 5 years in wood barrels, and produced from grapes grown in the vineyards of San Polo.  While traditional balsamic vinegar is aged for 12 to 28 years, this condiment version has a light, slightly sweet taste and is terrific for everyday use.  It arrives in a beautiful box and ornate bottle and would make a wonderful gift!

San Polo Modano Italy Balsamic Vinegar Condiment

(Balsamic Vinegar was provided by Emilia Delizia, hosts of all sorts of food, wine and cooking tours throughout Italy, including an option to tour the facility where this Balsamic Vinegar is produced from Lambrusco and Trebbiano grapes!)

Around our house, we use balsamic vinegar for all sorts of dishes and appetizers and enjoyed trying out this new bottle for ourselves in Parmesan Chicken with Balsamic Vinegar Reduction – a delicious dish with braised chicken seasoned in garlic, oregano, Parmesan and olive oil, then topped off with a simple, sweet balsamic vinegar reduction with honey.

It serves well with steamed broccoli and pan-fried potatoes or sauteed spinach. Hint: mix a bit of the balsamic vinegar with a little olive oil for dipping bread with dinner, too!

First, gather some olive oil, Parmesan cheese, oregano, and minced garlic for tossing the chicken with before cooking.

parmesan, garlic, olive oil, oregano, parsley, italian recipes


After coating the chicken, take a few minutes to lightly brown each side of the chicken in a non-stick skillet.

braising chicken in non-stick skillet, chicken recipes


Then drop the chicken pieces into the crockpot to cook on low for a few hours (so as not to heat up the kitchen, since it is the middle of summer!) — OR to have dinner ready a little sooner, bake the chicken in the oven at 400 degrees F for 30-40 minutes (depending on size of chicken pieces and whether using boneless).

braised parmesan chicken in crockpot, chicken recipes, crockpot recipes, italian recipes


While the chicken finishes cooking, mix the balsamic vinegar with a little honey and simmer down to a nice thickened balsamic reduction.

balsamic vinegar recipes, balsamic vinegar reduction, italian recipes


Wow!  It smells so good.  Dish it up with some steamed broccoli and skillet-fried potatoes for a filling and delicious dinner.

parmesan chicken with balsamic vinegar reduction, served with broccoli,


Parmesan Chicken with Sweet Balsamic Reduction (recipe link for printing / saving)
(serves 4-5)


12 chicken tenderloins (or 3 pounds chicken pieces)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons minced oregano
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons honey

In a large bowl, combine chicken pieces with oil, cheese, garlic and oregano.  In a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, lightly brown the chicken pieces (about 3-4 minutes on each side).

Place chicken pieces in a crockpot on low heat and cook for 3 hours until tender and cooked through (add just a little chicken broth or water, if needed).  Or for a faster meal, place chicken pieces on a baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees F for about 35 minutes until cooked through.

Meanwhile, stir together the balsamic vinegar and honey in a small saucepan over high heat, stirring regularly, until the mixture comes to a boil.  Reduce heat to low and let simmer until the mixture has reduced and thickened (allow about 10-15 minutes for this).  Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly to further thicken, as desired.

Place chicken on serving plates and spoon balsamic vinegar reduction sauce over the top to serve.


This balsamic vinegar also would work very well in these recipes:

Balsamic Vinaigrette Salad Dressing,

Strawberry Balsamic Yogurt,

Asparagus with Balsamic Tomatoes,

and other Balsamic Vinegar recipes.


What is your favorite way to use balsamic vinegar?  We love to hear what you are dishing up in your kitchen!

Remember to save all your favorite recipes right here in your own online cookbook for organizing recipes.

10 Delicious and Healthy Snacks for Healthy Living



healthy snacks, healthy living, healthy recipes

Of course we all know that fresh fruit or vegetables make a healthy snack and are good for us (and our kids or parents).  But sometimes it is nice to mix things up a bit, especially for the kids, and offer some other interesting options for healthy snack time.

Part of healthy living is making sure that neither our meals nor our snacks are super-sized, too, right?  So, even with a healthy snack, be sure to keep the amount small as well, just enough to keep up energy levels and tie you over to the next healthy meal.

We are excited to share these 10 healthy snack ideas with you.  Whether you are craving fruit, protein, grain, or even a little chocolate, we’ve got you covered!

1. Nutty Date Balls from Groovy Beets – these snack balls are naturally sweetened by dates and are fun to experiment with by adding in raw cacao powder for a superfood punch; made with walnuts, coconut, dates and vanilla, these are super easy to whip up (though they should be refrigerated for a few hours before serving).

nutty date balls, healthy snack, groovy beets


2. Apple Boats from Texas 4-H – Apples are cut in half (and cores removed), then filled with peanut butter mixture with raisins, and topped off with a cheese slice as a “sail” for the “boat”.  Cute, right?

toddler holding apple boat with peanut butter, raisins, and cheese


3. Clean Eating Homemade Popcorn from Groovy Beets – popped in coconut oil and seasoned with tamari and nutritional yeast for a easy healthy snack.

clean eating homemade popcorn, healthy snack recipe


4. Chocolate Protein Balls – Raw almonds, dates, and coconut seasoned with cacao powder and cinnamon provide a protein boost that’s especially great after a work-out.

chocolate protein balls, healthy snack recipe, post work-out recipe


5. Deviled Avocado Eggs – what could make deviled eggs better than adding some tasty avocado to the filling?  This easy, healthy snack is full of protein and healthy fats.

deviled avocado eggs, healthy snack, party recipe, breakfast


6. Granola Bars – These baked treats have quite a few ingredients, but mix up a big batch ahead of time and store them for the week.

chocolate dipped granola bars, healthy snack recipe


7. Fruit Kabobs – this healthy snack is super easy to put together with pieces of your favorite fruit threaded onto skewers for easy serving (no recipe needed!).

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8. Apple Caramel Crunch Balls – A diabetic friendly recipe loaded with protein and some sweet fruit to keep your energy going all afternoon.

apple caramel crunch balls, healthy snack recipe


9. Power Berry Smoothie – Only 5 ingredients needed; your favorite berries with yogurt, honey, and protein powder for a tasty and healthy treat.

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10. Maple Pecan Oat Bars – Gluten-free pecan and almond oat bars with almond butter, coconut oil and maple syrup to sweeten and tie together main ingredients.

maple pecan oat bars, healthy snacks, gluten-free recipe


See more healthy snack recipes over at Positive Health Wellness.

What are your favorite healthy snacks?  Do you have other tips you follow for healthy living?  Leave us a comment below with your thoughts and ideas.  We love hearing from you.

And remember you can store all your favorite recipes (from Grandma’s recipe box or your favorite website) here in your own online cookbook, easily organized and shared with family and friends.

Keep Favorite Recipes in Free Online Cookbook with Grocery List







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Invite Your Friends and Win an Amazon Gift Card



amazon gift cardYes, we’re giving away a $50 Amazon gift card on July 31!

Invite 3 friends to set up their own free account (copy and share this link with them – right here at Dish Dish (and have them enter your name in the box asking how they heard about us) and you will be entered into our drawing!

How easy is that?  Invite friends, share the free service, help them get started organizing recipes online (to declutter their kitchen and save time searching for recipes), and be entered to win, too.

Keep an eye out on Facebook and Twitter for winner announcements.
(Random drawing of eligible participants at 12:00 PM Noon CST on July 31).

How to Eat More Vegetables with Less Hassle



vegetables, farmers market, healthy recipes, vegetarian recipesHave you wondered how many vegetables are enough?  Does it seem too difficult to get enough veggies in your menu every day?  Actually, the recommended amounts, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture come out to about 2-1/2 cups of vegetables each day.  And that doesn’t seem so bad, right?

Out of these five categories of vegetables, we should try to eat some from each category throughout the week, which gives options for good variety and finding ones you like, so you can rotate them in and out each day.

Maybe the following break-down will help you and your family decide on a plan of action. (Of course, your plan will be more in-depth if following a clean eating or vegetarian menu).

Types of Vegetables and their Serving Size Portions:

1. Starchy vegetablescorn (1 large ear or 1 cup), potatoes (1 medium – about 3 inches diameter, or 1 cup diced or mashed), green peas (1 cup), lima beans (1 cup), and plantains (1 medium)

2. Beans and Peas (1 cup, cooked) – soy beans or edamame (1 cup raw), split peas, lentils, and colored beans (including black, kidney, navy, pinto, and garbanzo beans)

3. Red and Orange – Acorn or butternut squash (1 cup cubed / cooked), red bell peppers (1 large or 1 cup sliced), tomatoes (1 medium – 3 inches diameter or 1 cup chopped / sliced), carrots (2 medium or 1 cup baby or chopped), sweet potatoes (1 large – 2 inches diameter or 1 cup sliced or mashed), pumpkin (1 cup mashed)

4. Dark Green – Watercress and arugula (2 cups raw), Kale, collard, mustard and other big dark leafy greens (2 cups raw; 1 cup cooked), Romaine lettuce (2 cups raw), broccoli (three 5-inch spears or 1 cup florets)

5. Other – (Wait, what?  There’s an “other” category of vegetables?) – 1 cup of each of these equals one serving, except for the Iceberg lettuce which is a 2 cup serving of raw lettuce — artichokes, cauliflower, celery, green beans, mushrooms, turnips, wax beans, asparagus, bean sprouts, brussels sprouts, cucumber, eggplant, cabbage, green bell peppers, okra, and zucchini.

Thinking of it like this might break it down simply.  For example, having two cups of lettuce along with 1/2 cup of other vegetable salad ingredients (carrot, cucumber, tomato, etc) gives you all your vegetables for the day.  Enjoying a cup of baby carrots throughout the day for snacking, and then having sweet potato and beans with your dinner (or in a soup for dinner) is enough, as well.

sweet potato gnocchi

Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Eat them raw, cook them up in a casserole or soup, roast or sauté them individually with a little olive oil, salt and pepper (isn’t that simple?).


Italian Roasted Vegetables

Of course, if you are really averse to vegetables, like a few of my friends, packing them into your day in a big green smoothie or some orange or red smoothies might be the perfect answer instead.

Pick a few favorites, make a plan, and see how easy it is to work them in to your week.  And let us know how it goes – for you and yours.  What worked well or what didn’t?  Please leave us a comment below; we love hearing from you.

Happy 4th of July Recipes

4th of july recipes, 4th of july dessert, happy 4th of julyHappy 4th of July!  Some of my favorite memories as a child are of 4th of July holidays.  My parents always woke us up with 4th of July music blaring (from the record player – yes, that old thing that played round discs) – patriotic favorites by John Wayne, marches by John Philip Sousa and songs by Lee Greenwood, and more.

Most often we had plans to gather with family and friends later in the day for a cookout, games, fireworks (in those days we could shoot them off even in the city), and always some homemade ice cream.

fountain fireworks, 4th of july

Dad was king of the barbeque grill, getting the charcoal started and keeping a close eye on things (after getting the homemade ice cream process started, of course), while mom busily worked away in the kitchen prepping all the side dishes and some sort of dessert to go with the ice cream for the evening.

I remember decorating our little wagon and / or bicycles with 4th of July decorations (homemade – always), proudly strutting our patriotism down the street and around the yard while the adults gathered and visited.

patriotic bicycles, 4th of july decorations, american flags

We hope your family and friends are planning to gather and celebrate our country’s heritage.  Whether gathering with a few or a large group, here are some of our favorite 4th of July recipes for dishing up (including appetizers, desserts, and BBQ or grilling dishes).

1. Grilled Chicken Kabobs – sweet pineapple with peppers and onions create a sweet chicken dish perfect for serving over rice, too.

hawaiian sweet chicken kabobs with pineapple, peppers and onion

2. Macaroni and Cheese – this dish is really easy enough to make for yourself with fresh ingredients!

macaroni and cheese, healthy recipes, low-fat recipes

3. Provolone Burgers – if you normally serve hamburgers, try something a little different this year with this seasoned version.

provolone burgers, grill recipes, bbq recipes, party recipes, hamburgers


4. Potato Salad – whether looking for a traditional potato salad recipe or a lighter version, we have you covered.

potato salad, salad recipes, summer recipes,

5. Baked Beans – southern style baked beans with bacon (if desired).

southern style baked beans, picnic recipes, summer recipes, 4th of july recipes


6. Fruit Kabobs – these are refreshing, fun, and perfect both for the kids to help with and enjoy eating (and no recipe needed – simply skewer your favorite fruit chunks in a colorfully coordinated way and you’re done)!

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7. Red, White and Blueberry pie – a delicious cold, creamy pie with white chocolate filling, strawberries and blueberries.

red, white and blueberry pie, strawberries, blueberries, 4th of july recipe, white chocolate


8. Blackberry Cobbler – fresh blackberries make this cobbler a special treat.

blackberry cobbler, berry recipes, summer recipes, 4th of july recipe


9. Chocolate Coffee Ice Cream – homemade ice cream full of chocolate mocha flavor.

chocolate coffee ice cream cones


10. Watermelon Berry Lemonade Cooler  – lemonade mix blended with fresh watermelon and strawberries.

watermelon berry lemonade cooler, summer beverage, watermelon recipes, party recipes, 4th of july recipe


What are your favorite family traditions or fond memories of 4th of July?  What is a favorite dish that always reminds you of that holiday?

Remember you can organize all your favorite family recipes from holidays and get-togethers in your own free online family cookbook account right here at Dish Dish.