PARMESAN BURGER WITH PARMESAN CRISP

These Parmesan Burgers can be served on a bun or off, but I prefer the non-bun option for the sake of my waistline. Either way, they’re tasty. Thumbs up from my guys (even minus the bun).

Burger with Parmesan Crisp

1-1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan Cheese, divided

1 lb ground beef

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

1/2 cup fresh baby spinach

2 roma tomatoes, sliced thick

1) Heat large skillet over medium; using 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese (reserving 3/4 cup), form 4 mounds in skillet, spacing them 1″-2″ apart, and cook until melted; with a spatula, transfer Parmesan crisps to a plate and set aside

2) In medium-sized bowl, mix ground beef, reserved 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper; shape into 4 patties

3) Heat large grill pan (or grill out of doors) over medium-high; add burger patties to skillet and cook 4-5 minutes each side or until done to your preference; remove from heat

4) Divide spinach and tomatoes between 4 plates; top with burgers, followed by Parmesan crisp; serve and enjoy!

Servings: 4

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EASY PEACHY-PECAN-PARMESAN SALAD

Another wonderfully refreshing salad to celebrate the summer months (and heat up the kitchen as little as possible). Senior said, “Wow, there’s a lot of taste going off in my mouth.” I’ll take that compliment, and this one: “Is there more?” The only thing that would have made this better is if I’d had fresh peaches to grill. Oh, my!

Olive oil

1/2 large red onion, diced

3 cups baby spinach

3 cups romaine-butter lettuce mix

3 cups deli-roasted chicken, diced

1-15 oz can peaches in 100% juice, drained (better yet, 2 fresh peaches–peeled and sliced)

1/2 cup Craisins

1/2 cups pecans, chopped

1/2 cup shaved Parmesan cheese

Dressing of your choice

1) To large skillet over medium-high heat, add a swirl of olive oil; add red onions and saute 3-4 minutes until onions begin to turn translucent; remove from heat and set aside

2) Assemble 4 plates as follows: spinach, romaine-butter lettuce, chicken, peaches, Craisins, pecans, red onions, and Parmesan cheese

3) Serve with dressing of your choice

Serves: 4 dinner-sized portions

NOTE: This is a “repeat” recipe featured on my original “Kitchen Novelist” blog 06/06/12

PINE NUT-PARMESAN CRUSTED LEMON CHICKEN

Chicken, pine nuts, parmesan cheese, and lemon–the perfect combination! My guys: “Are there seconds?” Enough said.

3/4 cup flour

1 tsp sea salt, divided

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

2 eggs

1 cup panko breadcrumbs

zest of 1 lemon

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup chopped pine nuts

1 tsp dried basil

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp butter

4 chicken breasts

1 lemon, cut into 8 wedges (I used the zested lemon)

1 tbsp fresh parsley, minced

1) Combine flour, 1/2 tsp salt (reserving 1/2 tsp), and pepper in shallow bowl; crack eggs into second shallow bowl and lightly beat; combine breadcrumbs, lemon zest, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, and basil in third shallow bowl; set aside

2) In large skillet over medium heat, heat oil and butter

3) Meanwhile, place chicken breasts in large zip top bag and pound until about 1/2″ thick; dip both sides of each chicken breast in flour, next egg, then panko-pine nut mixture; transfer chicken to skillet and cook 4-5 minutes each side until chicken is crispy, golden, and cooked through

4) Remove skillet from heat and squeeze juice of 1 wedge of lemon (reserving 4 wedges) over each chicken breast; plate, sprinkle with parsley, and serve with remaining lemon wedges

Servings: 4