food. hearty chicken and dumpling soup.

First thought: best homemade chicken soup we've ever had. Thanks Food Network, it was delicious.

Hearty Chicken and Dumplings, Lightened Up
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 medium carrot, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 cups trimmed and halved green beans
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh dill

Heat the olive oil in a medium Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the celery, carrots, garlic, onions and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are softened, 5 minutes.

Add the broth and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, grind the oats in a food processor until fine.

Combine with the flour, baking powder, zest, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a medium bowl. Work in the butter with your fingers until only very small pieces remain. Stir in 1/2 cup ice water, a bit at a time, until a soft dough is formed. Let rest 10 minutes.

Drop cherry-size bits of the dumpling dough into the soup. Add the green beans and stir gently. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the dumplings are floating and cooked through and the beans are bright green and crisp-tender, about 12 minutes.

Add the chicken and continue to cook until it is just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, stir in the dill and season with salt and pepper.

Click here for the original recipe.

food. lemon yogurt bread.

I've had this recipe saved for a while in my calendar - it just kept getting pushed out to bake. When I looked  at the recipe last week, I vaguely remember making this when I first started at Yes, it's a Taste of Home recipe but at that time, they were sister companies. Nate and Greg were my guinea pigs...thankfully the recipe turned out delicious! If you're looking for an easy dessert, take ten minutes to put this together. It'll be a crowd pleaser.

Lemon Yogurt Bread
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
1 cup (8 ounces) lemon yoghurt
1/3 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and baking powder.
In another bowl, combine the egg, yoghurt, oil and lemon juice.
Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.
Pour into an 8-in. x 4-in. loaf pan coated with cooking spray.
Bake at 325° for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the centre comes out clean.
Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack.

Jen's Notes:
I followed the ingredients as they are. One exciting thing...I cracked the egg with one hand. Yes, to some not so made headline news in our house.

Since I'm too lazy to figure out how to work our convection oven still learning all the different settings on our convection oven, everything I have to throw in there goes on the force fan (I think that's the setting...) and at 180 or so degrees Celsius. Everything starts at about 20 minutes and I check it from there. It took this recipe about 35 minutes to bake through.

For the original recipe, click here.

food. mango chicken salad with couscous.

This was a find on my epicurious app. Mangoes are not in season here so we opted for Mango with Ginger
Chutney and honestly, I was just too busy to pick up some of the other ingredients needed so I made other substitutions. In the end, we were a huge fan of the couscous and we'll be making it again as a side.

Mango Chicken Salad with Couscous
1/4 cup couscous, follow the directions to cook
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped green bell pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon canola oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (3 ounces each)
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup Japanese rice vinegar
2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
1/2 head each romaine, frisée, hydro Bibb lettuce (we sub'd a head of romaine)
1 cup arugula
1/2 mango, thinly sliced (we sub'd Mango & Ginger Chutney)

In a bowl, combine couscous, bell peppers, onion, lemon juice, 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1/3 cup water. Season with salt.

In a large skillet over high heat, heat canola oil. Cook chicken until golden brown on the bottom, 3 to 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low. Flip chicken and cook through, 6 to 8 minutes. Cool chicken; cut into 1/2-inch dice.

In a blender set to medium, blend lime juice, vinegar, mustard, honey and soy sauce. Slowly add remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season with salt.

Break up romaine and combine with arugula in a bowl. Divide lettuce, couscous, chicken and mango chutney among 4 plates. Dress salad with mustard vinaigrette.

For the original recipe, click here.