A common question I get is if I am taking recipes from our loyal readers. The answer is, ABSOLUTELY! I only have so many recipes in my collection and I would welcome any that people would like to share. The two requests that I ask for these is that they are actually something you have shared with your family, because I really want them to be a tried and true family favorite, and that they are Aldi-friendly or can easily be modified to include only Aldi ingredients.
Please send your submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org and title your emails “Aldi Recipe Submission.” I am looking forward to sharing some of the foods you prepare in your kitchen! Many thanks to Mary for our first reader contribution!
Notes from the chef: I don’t do the mushrooms (can’t stand mushrooms), so I can’t comment on how those are. I use a Cuisinart Contact Grill and it cooks the thinned out chicken breasts at about 5 min. I’ve also used the marinade on plain old boneless-skinless – not pounded thin chicken, and put it in the oven at 350 for about 20-25 minutes. On the pasta, I don’t always use the butter with the spices. I’ve been known to just mix the sourcream, lemon juice, and cheese, and toss it with the pasta, totally skipping the butter part. Kids still love it – one less pan for me to wash – less work, too.
I hope you enjoy!!!
Lemon Grilled Chicken and Mushrooms
1 1/2 cups lemon juice
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard
1 tablespoon pressed garlic
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons light salt
1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts (turkey breast scallops may be substituted)
2 medium portobello mushrooms
Nonfat or olive oil cooking spray
Lemon Cream Capellini
2 tablespoons capers (omit to make an Aldi-friendly recipe)
1/3 cup finely chopped parsley
1 whole lemon
Preheat indoor grill. If you have a grill with a variable temperature control, set it to medium-high (1 or 2 steps below high) or to about 350 to 400 degrees F.
Marinade: mix the lemon juice, oil, Dijon-style mustard, garlic, pepper and salt.
Divide the marinade between two (1-gallon) zippered freezer-weight storage bags, 1-quart airtight containers or shallow square glass dishes (8 x 8 x 2-inch). Set aside while you prepare the chicken and mushrooms.
Spread a large piece of plastic wrap on a flat work surface. Arrange the chicken breasts in a single layer over the plastic wrap. Cover the breasts with another large piece of plastic wrap. Pound the breasts with the flat side of a meat mallet, bottom of a large heavy skillet or rolling pin until evenly flattened to about 1/4- to 1/2-inch thick.
Put the pounded breasts into one of the marinade-filled bags, containers or dishes. Turn the chicken so all surfaces are coated with the marinade. Zip the bag dosed, or cover the container or dish and marinate in the refrigerator for 20 minutes or up to 24 hours.
Prepare and marinate the portobello mushrooms. Using a small pairing knife cut the stems from the portobello mushrooms and slice the caps into 1-inch thick strips.
Put the mushrooms into the remaining marinade-filled bag, container or dish. (Note: If you are marinating the chicken overnight, do not put the mushroom slices in the marinade filled bag or container until up to 2 hours before cooking. The mushrooms will get too soggy if marinated longer.)
With your fingertips, gently turn the mushroom pieces so all surfaces are coated with the marinade. Zip the bag dosed, or cover the container or dish and marinate in the refrigerator for 20 minutes or up to 2 hours.
Grill the chicken and mushrooms. If you have a grill with a small grilling surface, grill the mushrooms first, then the chicken.
If you own a larger capacity grill, grill everything snnultaneously. Transfer the grilled food to a platter covered with aluminum foil to keep it warm until serving time.
Spray all surfaces of the mushrooms and chicken with cooking spray before putting them on the grill. Grill the mushrooms until grill marks appear, they are cooked through and a little over half their size when raw. Grill the chicken until the interior temperature reaches 160 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer. (about 4-6 minutes on a hot double sided grill) The meat should no longer be pink in the center, and all the juices should run clear when pricked with the tip of a knife.
To serve, slice the lemon into very thin rounds. Place equal amounts of pasta on four dinner plates. Slice the chicken breasts across the grain into 1/4- to 1/2-inch slices. Arrange equal amounts of the chicken and the grilled mushrooms on top of the Lemon Cream Capellini on each plate.
Sprinkle each plate with equal amounts of the capers, and parsley. Garnish with the thinly sliced lemon. Serve immediately with hot garlic bread and a Caesar salad.
Lemon Cream Capellini:
1/2 pound capellini or spaghetti
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons light butter
I/8 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon light salt
Pinch of nutmeg
1 cup low-fat or nonfat sour cream
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
In a 4- to 5-quart pot, bring very hot tap water, salt and oil to a rolling boil over high heat with the cover on. (The cover helps the water boil faster because the steam is trapped.)
When water is boiling, add the pasta. Part of the pasta will be sticking out of the pot. Stir gently until the pasta softens and all the noodles fit in the pot. Cover the pot and bring the water back up to a boil, about 1 to 3 minutes. When the water begins to boil again, take the cover off, and cook for 8 to 12 minutes until tender but slightly chewy (al dente). Since cooking times vary per brand, read the package for exact timing.
When pasta is done, drain immediately in a large colander.
While the pasta is cooking, melt the butter in a 1-quart saucepan over medium low heat. Whisk in the pepper, salt and nutmeg. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes.
Measure the sour cream, lemon juice and Parmesan into a 2or 3-cup bowl or measure. Whisk the butter mixture into the sour cream.
Using a rubber spatula, fold the lemon cream sauce into the hot pasta right before serving. Cover to keep warm if chicken and mushrooms are not quite done.