Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo - It's Texan, Low Carb and Paleo! Yeehaw!

Oh Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo How I love Thee. You Paragon of Leftovers Complete Me!

As I mentioned in the Armadillo Egg post, this is a love story devoted to leftovers.

Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo will never give your secret away.
No one will ever call you the Leftover Queen!
Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo translates to the Pizza Maker’s Chicken – Texas Style! Why do I call it Texas Style? Well because there are big honking jalapenos and goat cheese involved and jalapenos and goat “anything” is almost synonymous with Texas. Look up Texas on Wikipedia. You’ll see a goat and a big honking jalapeno. Would I lie to you?

Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo really translates into a marriage between three leftovers and cheese – the lovely cheese - that scrumptious cement that binds. Armadillo Eggs, Roasted Tomatoes (recipe follows), and Pizza Sauce (recipe follows) layer to make a breathtaking entrée that will never resemble leftovers. In fact, you will love it so much, it might take the place of Chicken Parmigiana!
Roasted Grape Tomatoes with Olive Oil and Balsamic
and Homemade Pizza Sauce - 2 staples in the
Fluffy Chix Kitchen.
Fluffy Chix Cook Roasted Tomatoes and Pizza Sauce regularly! They're made up and waiting in the fridge or freezer , ready to go at a moment’s notice. Those two recipes quickly avert any temptations we have to eat pizza from the local takeout joint!

We even keep pizza skins (low carb pizza crusts) par-baked and in the freezer to help avert happy fingers – that special “something” that happens to your fingers when you tap in the numbers for the local pizza delivery guy.

Since there are a lot of recipes in this post, I won’t bore you with a long diatribe about how much the ‘boys’ (remember our sock monkey ‘boys’), love Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo, or Low Carb Pizza, or Roasted Tomatoes, or Pizza Sauce! Let’s just say they no longer beg for Pizza Hut or Dominoes or Papa John’s. They just ask me to get my “biatch-azz back in the kitchen and bake them some pie” a la Eric Cartman from SouthPark. Ahem, yes, there is Palmolive soap and mouth washing involved after such comments. But what can I say? Those little couch monkeys speak truth. LOL!

Pick up the recipe for Armadillo Eggs here. Then come right back for more recipes!

(SusieT Notes on Grape Tomatoes – Chances are you have grape tomatoes that turn shriveled before you have a chance to use them. Chances are you’ve thrown them away time and again. Chances are you despair each time you toss food in the trash, especially with high prices these days. Well, stop it! Don’t throw another grape tomato raisin away again. Ever. Simply roast them!

I actually "plan for obsolescence.” Meaning, I know we can’t possibly eat all the tomatoes in a huge container from Sam’s before the skin starts to wrinkle on them! But heck fire! I can buy I think it's 2lbs of grape tomatoes from Sam's for practically the same price I pay for a pint of them at the HEB. I know, that half of them will end up shrivelled and waiting to become roasted tomatoes. Viva la revolution! I’m schmart and practical...mostly practical. )

Get tricky if you wanna! Add a sprig of fresh rosemary
and a couple sprigs of fresh thyme and a couple of
lemon zest shavings for even greater flavor in your
Roasted Grape Tomatoes. Don't forget to use the olive oil!
Grape Tomatoes
Serves – 1-1/8 cup Roasted Tomatoes
Prep Time – 5 Minutes
Cook Time – 25-30 Minutes
Difficulty – Easy

2 pints Grape Tomatoes, dried out ones work great here
1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1 Tbsp. Dried Basil
2 pinches Kosher Salt
½ c. Olive Oil (or enough to cover cooked tomatoes)
1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar (optional) or Red Wine Vinegar
4 cloves Garlic

Preheat oven to 400°

Grape tomatoes have "prune hands"! They look like
shrivelled messes with almost 20% of water dehydrated
simply by leaving them on the counter in their
carton with the lid left open for about 2 weeks.
You think this tomato is bad because the tomato is dried out and shriveled and you hate the texture of it. Or at least that’s what Denny says. He hates it when the tomatoes shrivel. I look forward to it, cuz I know they are only a step away from roasted tomato goodness!

Wash and dry grape tomatoes. You can cut them in half, but why bother?

Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil.

Add dried basil. Fluffy Chix use about a tablespoon full or 1 small palm full of dried basil.

Sprinkle the basil over the tomatoes.

Add a big pinch of kosher salt.

Now do it again a second time.

Stir gently with a spatula to evenly distribute oil, basil and salt.

Turn out onto a parchment lined cookie sheet.

Bake for 25 – 30 Minutes or until a little browned and soft.

Don’t panic! The parchment will be very brown in spots. It will look like you’ve made a terrible mistake! No worries, mon! Allow roasted tomatoes to cool completely on the cookie sheet.
Gently transfer roasted tomatoes into a storage container.

Peel and smash garlic with the flat of a knife. Leave the cloves basically whole, but smash them to release garlic oil into the tomatoes. Add garlic to the tomatoes.

Pour olive oil over tomatoes and garlic until completely covered. Yes, I know. It uses a lot of olive oil! But you can use this oil for salad dressings. Toss it with veggies! Don’t throw the olive oil away once the tomatoes are eaten.

Add a tablespoon of balsamic or red wine vinegar. If you are afraid of the 5g of carbs each tablespoon of balsamic adds, then stick with red wine or lemon juice. But add acid. You'll thank me! And they'll keep longer.

Cover and refrigerate until the next time you make an appetizer, salad or entrée. They work great with pizzas, veggies, salads, appetizer bites and entrees, especially fish and chicken, omelets – even pork. Almost anything you can imagine!! Great gnoshes!!!

Grape Tomatoes Nutritional Information
Full Recipe

Single Serving

Homemade Pizza Sauce will set you free from the tyranny
of HFCS and tons of gobbledy gook!
Pizza Sauce
Serves – 1 to 1-1/4 cup Pizza Sauce
Prep Time – 2 Minutes
Cooking Time – 30 Minutes
Difficulty – Are you allowed to handle wine?

2 c. Marinara (homemade preferred but jarred works too)
½ c. Dry White Wine or Dry Vermouth (optional but you should use it)
¼ c. Water, filtered

Pour marinara into a small, heavy bottom sauce pan.

Add wine or dry vermouth.

(SusieT’s Dry Vermouth Note - No, you don’t have to use it. But if you use it once. You will never NOT use it again! Go get a bottle of Dry Vermouth from the liquor store. Martini & Rossi
or Noilly & Pratt. Costs about $7.00. You don’t have to refrigerate it after opening and it has a screw top. It is most excellent. Julia Child used it almost exclusively or at least preferentially! )

Cover pot with a lid or with a perforated pizza pan. I found mine at the thrift store for $.50! And let it reduce over medium heat until marinara becomes thick.

It should reduce by about half of the original volume. Stir frequently and don’t let it boil.
Reduce heat if necessary and stir!

Once reduced by half take off heat and transfer to a glass bowl. Allow to cool completely. Cover and refrigerate, or portion into 1/4-1/2 cup portion sizes and freeze for later use. Don’t forget to add the date on the outside of the freezer container along with the name of the product!

Pizza Sauce Nutritional Information
Full Recipe

Single Serving

Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo could replace Chicken Parmigiana!
And TCP is low carb, paleo and diabetic friendly! Woot!
Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo

Servings – 4
Prep Time – 10 Minutes
Cook Time – 30 Minutes
Difficulty – Are you allowed to turn on the oven?

4 Armadillo Eggs, leftover is easier
1 c Pizza Sauce
1/2c Roasted Tomatoes
4 oz Provolone
2-4 oz Mozzarella Cheese
1-1/3 Tbsp. Olive Oil
Garnish - Fresh Parmesan (the good stuff) (optional)
Cracked Red Pepper Flakes (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°.

Get out a few of the leftover Armadillo Eggs (about 1 per person).

If you haven't cooked the Armadillo Eggs yet, you can go here for the recipe. But remember, you have to cut the jalapeno first. Get the biggest jalapenos you can find!

Stuff it with goat cheese.

Top the cheese and jalapeno with a slice of seasoned chicken or sausage. Italian sausage would taste awesome in this recipe! But you would have to change the name! And most importantly! Wrap it with bacon! Overlap bacon by about 1/8" with each revolution.

Grill the Armadillo Eggs per the recipe and cook them until completely done.

Top each Armadillo Eggs with ¼ cup of Pizza Sauce, 1/8 cup of Roasted Grape Tomatoes, ½ to 1 ounce shredded Mozzarella Cheese, 1 ounce slice of Provolone Cheese.

Bake for 30 minutes until cheese is melted and starting to brown on top. Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo should be hot in the middle!

Remove from oven and plate. Pour any sauce from the pan over each portion. Drizzle with a bit of extra virgin olive oil and a grating of freshly grated parmesan cheese. Sprinkle with a few red pepper flakes. Enjoy!

Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo Nutritional Information
Full Recipe

Single Serving

SusieT’s Notes –
I’m going on record right here. Roasted Tomatoes and Pizza Sauce will free you from tyranny. They will complete you. They will alter the course of your life as you know it. Seriously. I am NOT being melodramatic!

Just make them one time. I beg you! Make them one time. And use the Dry Vermouth. It’s cheap, easy to keep and changes the flavor altogether. You will never look at Italian food again the same way. I promise!
Does Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo feel like
diet food to you?

Texas Chicken Pizzaiolo tastes great served with zucchini linguini in olive oil with garlic. It also works great with a chopped salad and homemade House Vinaigrette – or homemade Caesar dressing (recipe coming soon).

This is a cheap dinner. It tastes so completely over the top your friends and family will think you are the next Food Network Star. And you NEVER EVER have to tell anyone, it’s constructed purely from leftovers.

Can you imagine having a dinner party and making this stuff up a couple of days ahead of time? See? You have time to sit back and relax before your party. But why save this for a party? You could have a daily party of your very own with these recipes!

Mangia! Ooops! I mean – Boy Howdy! Hey y’all! Watch this!

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