Mixed Bag Mondays: Warm Weather Baking

There is no common theme today. Sorry. I feel like I haven’t been this tired in a long while. Basically, the Chiplet has been continuing to wake up at night, but coupling it with not great naps and waking up super early. It’s been fun. So, my brain is pretty fuzzy. But, I have still been cooking and baking a bunch, so here are some results of those efforts.

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Chicken Spanakopita Skillet Recipe

When I first planned to make this, I got to make the discovery that my main grocery store no longer carries phyllo dough. Just phyllo tart shells. Not super helpful for most times I want phyllo dough. What to do? Well…let’s start with how it is supposed to look.

This was made with some help from my sous chef.

He insisted on helping to make it, and since most of it is a stove recipe I recruited him for the phyllo dough. He did pretty well, especially since he hasn’t been helping as much recently (he helps by entertaining the Chiplet and keeping him out of trouble when I cook).

Now back to the first time I made this. I used the tarts because it’s all I had. I crumbled them into pieces, then drizzled some melted butter on top before baking.

Not quite as good since there wasn’t as much phyllo from the shells, but it was delicious enough that we remade it multiple times after finding phyllo dough from a different store. Yay!

Oh, and please don’t forget the dill. It really adds something special to the dish.

Directions for Chicken Spanakopita Skillet Recipe

Adapted from Serious Eats

  • 16 ounces baby spinach leaves
  • 8 Tablespoons butter, divided (I used a butter alternative), with possibly more
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, chopped into 1/2-inch chunks
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1.5 Tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half (I used almond milk)
  • 6 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 6 to 8 sheets phyllo dough, thawed and covered with a towel

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

In a large cast iron skillet or in a Dutch oven (what I used), heat a tablespoon of the butter and cook the spinach in batches, allowing each batch to wilt, then removing to a colander. Drain and press out the excess water in the cooked spinach.

Melt 2 more tablespoons butter in the skillet. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then cook in the butter to lightly brown each side. Set the chicken aside.

Melt 2 more tablespoons butter and add the garlic, cooking for about 1-2 minutes until lightly golden. Then, add in the flour, whisking to make a paste. Whisk in the chicken broth.

Cook, whisking until the mixture thickens and can coat the back of a spoon. Whisk in the half-and-half.  Add the feta, green onions, and dill. Stir until the feta melts. Remove from the heat, stir in the chicken and spinach.

Melt the remaining butter. Take a sheet of phyllo dough and lay it on a work surface. Brush some of the butter on top, then scrunch it and place it on top of the skillet.

Continue with more sheets of phyllo until you cover the whole top. Bake for about 15-20 minutes until the top is golden and crispy.

Directions for Chicken Spanakopita Skillet Recipe (without pictures)

Adapted from Serious Eats

  • 16 ounces baby spinach leaves
  • 8 Tablespoons butter, divided (I used a butter alternative), with possibly more
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, chopped into 1/2-inch chunks
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1.5 Tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half (I used almond milk)
  • 6 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 6 to 8 sheets phyllo dough, thawed and covered with a towel

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

In a large cast iron skillet or in a Dutch oven (what I used), heat a tablespoon of the butter and cook the spinach in batches, allowing each batch to wilt, then removing to a colander. Drain and press out the excess water in the cooked spinach.

Melt 2 more tablespoons butter in the skillet. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then cook in the butter to lightly brown each side. Set the chicken aside.

Melt 2 more tablespoons butter and add the garlic, cooking for about 1-2 minutes until lightly golden. Then, add in the flour, whisking to make a paste. Whisk in the chicken broth. Cook, whisking until the mixture thickens and can coat the back of a spoon. Whisk in the half-and-half.  Add the feta, green onions, and dill. Stir until the feta melts. Remove from the heat, stir in the chicken and spinach.

Melt the remaining butter. Take a sheet of phyllo dough and lay it on a work surface. Brush some of the butter on top, then scrunch it and place it on top of the skillet. Continue with more sheets of phyllo until you cover the whole top. Bake for about 15-20 minutes until the top is golden and crispy.

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Cinnamon Braided Brioche Bread

Are you tired of bread yet? I hope not. This is (maybe) the best bread I made with the brioche dough. We all loved it so much that I made it twice within a week. If you already have the dough ready, this is a super easy recipe. It’s a bit tricky to explain the braids, so look at the pictures, or also go back to my challah post where I did the same style of braids.

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Star Bread

As I wrote on Monday, you can do a lot with brioche dough. Here is the first recipe I want to show you. It is so easy and so customizable.

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Bread in 5’s Brioche Bread

Today I am sharing a “starter” recipe which will allow you to make all kinds of breads, whether ones I share or ones you come up with. I actually found a different bread recipe and used this dough to make my own version. Spoiler, it turned out amazing and will be coming up on here shortly.

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Tips-y Tuesdays: Non-dairy Ice Cream

Nothing too crazy here today. Just ice cream without cream. Now, this isn’t ice cream that will completely fool you into thinking it is normal ice cream. And I would still like to try other options in the future with coconut milk, but this was a great first attempt. The Fudgelet and Chiplet were both big fans.

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Mixed Bag Mondays: Curiously Successful

Sometimes I make recipes and want to try making them again not because they were completely satisfactory but because I am curious about how they turned out. This is a bit hard to explain, but basically the recipes are not overly complicated/weird, the end result is edible and potentially pleasant, but there is something not quite right which might require further experimentation.

Let’s start with donuts!

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