Breakfast Ideas, Cooking & Entertaining Ideas, Easy Entertaining, Entrees, gluten-free, Low Carb, Pantry to Plate

Kitchen Therapy… Crustless Quiche with Bacon, Caramelized Onions, Spinach & Cheddar

Bacon Spinach and Cheddar Quiche' 3As I continue to focus my nervous energy in the kitchen, I find my favorite time to cook is in the the early morning – especially if I’m having trouble sleeping.

I’ve really been trying to challenge myself to work with whatever I have in my refrigerator and pantry, which has cut my trips to the store way down.  My goal is to only go to the store once a week during this important time of social-distancing.

This morning, I was in the mood for quiche – which is one of the most versatile menu options ever… great for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Plus, I look at what I have on hand and that is what I use, making it a great way to clear out my crisper drawer the day before I shop.

Today’s creation… a low-carb, gluten-free crustless quiche with bacon, caramelized onions, spinach and cheddar…

Recipe - Crustless Quiche

Bacon Spinach and Cheddar Quiche'

Be sure to cool your quiche for about 5-10 minutes as it will slice better.  Hope you enjoy!



Cooking & Entertaining Ideas, Entrees, Recipe of the Week, Triple Play Recipes

Fig Balsamic Vinegar Triple Play: Recipe #1 – Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breasts with Fig Balsamic Sauce

Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breast with Balsamic Fig Sauce 5

Well, I have to say… it felt really good to turn the oven on again.  With the unusual heat wave we have been having in Central New York, we’ve been pretty focused on the grill for the past month.

This week I wanted to bring to light on of my favorite vinegars, Napa Valley Naturals Fig Balsamic Vinegar.

napa valley naturals fig balsamic vinegar

This artisan handcrafted Fig Balsamic Vinegar is aged in Modena, Italy.  It’s a rich, dark,  sweet, and lightly acidic vinegar made from just two ingredients – balsamic vinegar and fig puree.  Simply delicious… even by itself drizzled over mixed greens or vanilla ice cream!  It’s also very reasonable priced and something we always carry in the store.

Fig Balsamic Vinegar makes healthy flavorful cooking a snap.  This week, I’ll share three of my favorite healthy recipes with this great pantry staple.  Starting with Recipe #1:  Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breasts with Fig Balsamic Sauce.

Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breast with Balsamic Fig Sauce 5

Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breasts with Fig Balsamic Sauce

4               Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
4 oz.         Package of Thin Sliced Prosciutto (8 Slices)
1 Tbls.      Extra Virgin Oil Olive*
Salt & Pepper to Taste

Fig Balsamic Marinade
½ Cup      Napa Valley Naturals Fig Balsamic Vinegar*
½ Cup      Chicken Stock
1 Tbsp.     Brown Sugar
1               Clove Garlic, Minced
1 Tbsp.     Extra Virgin Olive Oil”
Salt & Pepper to taste

Make the marinade:  Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.  (When using dried thyme – rub in between your hands before dropping it into the jar to release its natural oils).

Place chicken breasts in a casserole dish (or large Ziploc bag) and add in marinade (mix and turn chicken to coat.  Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes or longer.

Take chicken breasts out of marinade and lightly pat dry with paper towels.  Pour marinade into a small sauce pan and bring to a full boil.  Reduce and cook over medium heat for about 10-12 minutes until the fig balsamic sauce is thoroughly cooked and thickened.

In the meantime, start wrapping your chicken.  Lay two slices of prosciutto (side by side) on a cutting board.  Place chicken (top side down) on the center of the two slices of prosciutto – wrap the prosciutto around the chicken breasts. Secure with a couple of toothpicks as needed.

Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breast with Balsamic Fig Sauce 3

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Place a large oven safe frying pan on the stove top over medium high heat, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and then place the chicken breasts (top side down first – toothpicks up) to the pan.  Brown for about 4 minutes, then flip and brown the other side.  Flip chicken once again so that the top of the chicken breasts are showing again.

Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breast with Balsamic Fig Sauce 4

Spoon the sauce over the chicken breasts then place the frying pan into the oven to roast for about 20 minutes or until chicken has reached 160 degrees.  Remove from oven let rest for about 5-10 minutes.

Move chicken to a platter and drizzle remaining frying pan sauce over the chicken.  Serve with cauli-rice, rice, or mashed potatoes and roasted vegetables.


*Ingredients available at à la Maison in Baldwinsville, NY or contact us at 315-440-6637.


#cooking healthfully, New at à la Maison

New at a la Maison… Napa Valley Naturals Organic Toasted Sesame Oil


Another great oil added to the shelves of `a la Maison is Napa Valley Naturals Organic Expeller Pressed Toasted Sesame Oil. It is made from sesame seeds that have been roasted at a low temperature for a rich and smooth sesame flavor. It’s unique flavor is the perfect choice for Asian inspired dressings, sauces and marinades.

Because it is organic, it is an environmentally responsible product and you can feel good about knowing it is free of pesticides and chemical fertilizers.

It’s a go-to oil that I pair often with our King Soba organic rice, buckwheat and ramen noodles. If you have a few vegetables in your pantry, you have a super quick & healthy meal that can be on the table in 20 minutes. Finish it off with a touch of toasted sesame oil and you’re done!

Find Napa Valley Naturals at `a la Maison in Baldwinsville. For more recipe ideas and tips on using organic toasted sesame oil or King Ramen organic noodles, stop into the store at 25 Syracuse Street, Baldwinsville, New York to learn more.

Cheers to healthy eating!


#cooking healthfully, New at à la Maison

Cooking Healthfully with Napa Valley Naturals Grapeseed Oil


Napa Valley Naturals Grapeseed Oil is made from the seeds of grapes that have been crushed to make wine. This product supports environmental sustainability as it requires no new farmland, water or other natural resources to produce.

Chef’s Choice: Not only ecologically responsible, Grapeseed Oil is also a very healthy choice and the ultimate everyday cooking and condiment oil. Many chefs reach to it for its light taste as it won’t overpower the flavor of food; while its high smoke point (485 degrees/F), lets you fry, bake or sauté without smoking or burning. Its delicate flavor is the perfect choice for light salad dressings and a healthy alternative to butter, margarine, and other saturated fats.

Cooking Healthfully: Also, Grapeseed Oil is an excellent source of Vitamin E, an important antioxidant, and offers one of the highest concentrations of heart healthy mono and poly-unsaturated fats of any vegetable oil. If that isn’t enough, Grapeseed Oil has one of the lowest saturated fat levels of ANY oil.

Grapeseed Oil sits front and center in my pantry – right next to my Olive Oil. It is my go-to oil for stir-fry, as unlike Olive Oil, it can take the heat without breaking down and smoking.

Grapeseed Oil is a staple ingredient to any healthy pantry. You can find it on our shelves at `a la Maison in Baldwinsville. If you have any questions about Grapeseed Oil, and how to use it, please stop into the store for tips and recipe ideas.

Cheers to healthy cooking!


Cooking & Entertaining Ideas, Uncategorized

Cooking Healthfully… Starts with Your Cookware

Many people start the New Year out with a resolution to eat healthier.  You may start by cleaning out your pantry and replacing unhealthy oils and staples with smarter, healthier options. Definitely a great place to begin.

While you are building your healthy kitchen, don’t forget to look at your cookware.  What you are using to cook your food with can be as important as what goes in the pan.  Nonstick cookware seems like a healthy option, but if it is older and showing signs of wear – scratches, chips in the nonstick finish, etc. – it is time to toss it out.  The last thing you want to add to your healthy recipe are toxins from your cookware.

Kickoff the New Year by replacing old, overused pans and cookware with healthier options.  I know that a nonstick pan is a joy to work and a breeze to clean, but there are several nonstick, easy-to-clean options that won’t add chemicals/toxins to your food:

Chasseur’s line of high quality enameled cookware, an amazing cookware line from France, has stood the test of time.  The special enamel coating creates a strong seal and prevents corrosion.  This cast-iron line is the perfect choice for slow braising and simmering due to its ability to retain and distribute heat evenly.

Chasseur cookware is suitable for all types of heat sources, including induction.   It’s easy to clean with some hot soapy water and a gentle soak to release baked on food.  Do not use abrasive scrubs on this fine cookware.   You’ll find a selection beautifully enameled black and white Chasseur Cookware at `a la Maison in Baldwinsville.

Chasseur Black Dutch Oven

The Chasseur Dutch Oven is not only beautiful; but a powerhouse in the kitchen.  You can depend upon it for superior slow braising and simmering.  A perfect choice for soups; sauces; and braised meats.

grill pan image

A Cast-Iron Grill Pan is ideal for indoor grilling (a must if you live in Central New York!)  The heavy, grooved surface retains heat and guarantees beautiful results.  It is important to season your grill before using.  After a few uses, your nicely seasoned pan will become your best friend!

Cast Iron fry pan

Grandma knew best… I remember my Grandmother always reaching for her old Cast-Iron skillet for everything from frying chicken to cooking eggs and sausage to making cornbread.  The Cast-Iron skillet was a work horse in the kitchen of yesteryears, and it’s time to bring it back!   Truly the original non-stick cookware, the Cast-Iron skillet is great for even heating… and no toxic coating… Yeah!

I got my first pre-seasoned Cast-Iron skillet a few years ago, and quite frankly, the first time I used it – I was not totally impressed.  Just because it says pre-seasoned doesn’t mean it’s totally non-stick to start.  I found that the more I used it; the better the seasoning got – it actually builds up over time.  Now I love it – It’s super easy to clean, just scrub with hot water.  Please don’t use soaps or cleansers on these beauties!  (Think of it like your pizza stone… no soap… just gently scrape and wipe clean with hot water… dry immediately.  Before you know it, you’ll have your favorite non-stick frying pan – again, free of toxic coatings.

Paderno ceramic coated frying pan

Ceramic Coating Commercial Grade Aluminum Cookware

Another fantastic cookware option is Ceramic Coated cookware.  Ceramic Coated cookware is non-toxic and non-reactive, which eliminates the release of chemicals, toxins and gases into both your food and the atmosphere.  Ceramic is energy efficient, as it retains heat well so you can cook on a lower temperature.  It’s economical as the ceramic coating will never wear off when used properly.

Investing in good quality cookware is an investment in the health of you and your family.  When properly care for, these pans can last a lifetime. Actually, longer than a lifetime, as you will probably be able to hand that cast-iron skillet down to your children!

Find all these great cookware options at `a la Maison in Baldwinsville.  For more information call 315-440-6637.

Cheers to healthy cooking!!!