Kitchen Serendipity » Food for the Eyes and Soul | Food Blog

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skillet chicken caprese


Skillet Chicken Caprese has without a doubt become one of our favorite easy weeknight dishes – yet it’s also very worthy of weekend appearances and great for casual entertaining.  The great thing about this dish is that it goes from stovetop to oven in one skillet which makes cleanup a breeze.  Just make sure that your skillet is overproof (many are up to 450°F) and always grab that potholder before removing the skillet from the oven.  I photographed this recipe with the chicken in the skillet, hot from the oven, to convey the feeling of  serving in a family-style way and oh wow had to remind myself NOT to touch the skillet handle as I styled the shot.

Are you dining à deux?  Go ahead and cook two chicken breasts but there’s no need to change anything else in the recipe except that you’ll use less mozzarella cheese.  You’ll just end up with a saucier dish and that’s never a bad thing in our house.  And speaking of cheese, I use the bocconcini size fresh mozzarella from Bel Gioioso – it works and melts wonderfully.  And another addition if you’re cooking two chicken breasts – add some sliced sweet onion when you add the wine.  Yum




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garlicky meyer lemon and honey chicken drumettes


Football season is in full swing and nothing says tailgating better then a delicious pile of chicken wings!  I used chicken drumettes here but you may use good ‘ole chicken wings as well.  Better yet – double the recipe and make two yummy batches!  These are a little spicy, a little sticky, and big on flavor.  If you can’t find Meyer lemons (our The Fresh Market carries them and I’ve seen them at a local Publix as well) feel free to substitute the juice of regular lemons.  Meyer lemons are more of a cross between an orange and a lemon and are sweeter.

If you have any specialty extra-virgin oils on hand – give the drumettes a drizzle when they’re done!  I used a blood orange Riesling infused oil from the Oil & Vinegar store and to add another citrus note to the final dish.




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Kami - I can’t wait to make this! Also, I can’t stop my mouth from watering after looking at your gorgeous photos! I would be honored if you checked out our conference and affiliate program. We need incredible bloggers like you!

rosemary-tarragon pork chops | dining a deux


Hi there!  Every family size is different and in the last two years it really just been my son and I at the dinner table so I’ve become pretty accustomed to scaling back on meal size with the exception of creating recipes for this blog.  In another two years he will be off to college….leaving me to dine alone or with a partner as I transition to becoming an empty-nester (gulp).  Dining à deux can be sophisticated – or relatively simple – it just sets a different tone than putting together a standard family dinner.  It’s adult in nature; it conjures up two people enjoying themselves with a lovely meal and perhaps a bottle of wine in a relaxed setting.  I certainly admire all of the bloggers out there that have found successful ways to get a good meal on the table every night for their families but I’m just not in that place anymore as many others are no longer as well.  So I thought I would start a Dining à Deux feature with recipes designed for two to make dinner just a bit more special, a little more intimate, and wonderfully appreciated.  I hope you enjoy it!!  And most recipes can easily be doubled to serve a family of four……..

Today’s recipe is Rosemary-Tarragon Pork Chops.  Yum.  A little more sophisticated than a family meal with the stronger-flavored herbs and the wine sauce – but it doesn’t have to be.  My son – who is in the Dominican Republic this week with his Spanish classmates and faculty – doesn’t like rosemary so I made my third test recipe today while he is away lol.  I am so proud of him – they are working with children there.  My mommy heart almost burst when I saw this picture posted yesterday via the Outreach360 organization……especially love how the little boy who is diligently working is resting his hand on my son’s arm almost as though in comfort and appreciation.


Preparations are underway for the pork chops…..each pork chop is first seared in a hot skillet and then transferred to a baking/roasting dish where each sits upon a nice thick slice of sweet onion which become soft and even sweeter.  Did I already mention yum?




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Jersey Girl Cooks - Love how the chops rest on the onion slices. Your food always looks so beautiful!

nacho cheesiest bay scallops gratin


This dish was dinner Tuesday night to celebrate Cinco de Mayo but it’s good any evening – no holiday required to enjoy!  I adapted this recipe that’s been in my binder of fish and seafood recipes for years by switching out a couple of the original ingredients – namely Ritz crackers and Parmigiano-Reggiano – for Spicy Nacho Doritos and a Mexican blend of finely shredded cheese.  If your kids are not big seafood eaters, cheese and Doritos just might be the enticement they need to dig in.




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Christian - Thanks! Really Good!

hearts of palm salad with olives and ham


This salad is a twist on the famous 1905 Salad at the Columbia Restaurant – a Tampa and Sarasota, FL Spanish-Cuban dining establishment that dates back to 1905 – and there is a little story on how this recipe came to be.

Let’s go back to 1999 – a very important year because that’s the year in which my son was born.  But I was also hard at work on recipes back then, fueled and inspired by my frequent weekends spent at The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY taking a wide variety of courses.  It was during this time that I challenged myself to submit recipes to what was Bon Appétit magazine’s former  “Too Busy to Cook?” section that featured recipes by readers of the magazine.  Surprising enough, my recipes were accepted and I found myself staring in awe at the April 1999 issue in which they were published.

So yesterday, I decided to resurrect this recipe exactly 16 years later.  The only change I made was to increase the amount of garlic and I tossed the lettuce in the bowl with the other ingredients instead of laying leaves on a plate.  Not touching anything else – it’s a food blogger’s dream when someone else does the recipe testing for you – in this case the Bon Appétit test kitchen.  Pretty cool.




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Veronica - Wow! That’s awesome :) I hope you kept a few copies! They knew what they were doing- this is a beautiful salad.