Saturday, December 12, 2015

"Happy Cooking" by Giada De Laurentiis Review with Recipe 'Chicken Marsala Meatballs'

Happy Weekend! 
Hope your week went well! 
It's getting really busy around here, and I 
am loving all the hustle and bustle this time of year 
brings! With all the Holiday Cheer, warm feelings
spending time with the ones we love dear!
Hot chocolate, marshmallows, and fresh 
baked Christmas Cookies!
Katelyn had her Christmas Concert 
(it was titled Winter, but I'm old school,
back in the day it was Christmas),
I'm halfway done with Christmas decorations.
Lindsay and I had fun, decorating the staircase and 
the banister above the living room!

Tonight we're going to a Christmas party, and
I said I'd make an appetizer!
For the Holidays, I'm trying to eat a little

The last couple of weeks have been pretty busy, and I haven't even had a chance to browse through,
Giada's new Cookbook, (affiliate link)
 "Happy Cooking: Make Every Meal Count ... Without Stressing Out "!

I was excited to get her new book. Giada's someone I feel is a kindered spirit of mine.
She says in her book, that "she is happiest when she is in the kitchen."
I feel the exact same way! 
{except for cleaning up the dishes}

There were more than several recipes that caught my attention, and keep in mind,
I quickly browsed through it, and I really loved seeing what she's been cooking up!

My favorite recipes included, a Gluten Free Lemon-Cumin Chicken and Pesto, Monte Cristo sandwhiches {left over turkey}, and 
it was a toss up between Key Lime Panna Cotta or Limoncello Parfaits! 

3 Things I like About this Book
  • There are several reasons why I choose my cookbooks, and it's not only just for the recipes, but a cook book must have provocative food photographs, that inspire me to make a recipe. The photos in Giada's cookbook, are absolutely lovely, the ingredients look fresh, and the food looks amazing!
  • The book  is divided up into chapters, breakfast, pasta and risotto of course, Holiday, there is even a healthy eating chapter, and what better way to end a meal than with a sweet tempting dessert!
  • What I really enjoyed about this book  is Giada's passion for sharing her love of cooking. from explaining what the different names of pasta are, how to well stock a pantry to help take out the stress of cooking, to how to host a party!

The recipe I chose, looked healthy to try.
A light elegant antipasti,
Chicken Marsala Meatballs with a Red Wine Crimini sauce 
{adapted from Happy Cooking}

1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
2 Tbls. milk
1/3 cup plus 1 Tbls. Marsala wine {I used Cabernet}
1 pound ground chicken breast
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 large egg, beaten
2 Tbls. chopped fresh parsley
1 tsp. sea salt divided
pinch of black pepper
2 Tbls. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Canola oil for frying
8 oz. Cremini mushrooms, I used Portabellas
1 large shallot minced
1 1/2 tsp. flour
1 1/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth

In a large bowl, mix together the bread crumbs, milk, and 1 Tablespoon of the wine. Let the crumbs soak for about 5 minutes. Add the chicken, parmesan, egg, parsley, 1/2 teaspoon of salt. I used a spoon to mix the ingredients together. Do not overmix, and set in refrigerator for 2 hours. I probably should have, because the mix wasn't cold enough to hold the shape of a meatball, they turned out a little wonky.
In a medium skillet, add enough oil,to come up 1-in on the side. Heat oil to medium low. Working quickly scoop 2 Tbls. of mix out and shape mixture into a ball, using your hands. Gently drop meatballs, one at a time into the hot oil, being very careful not to splash the very hot oil. Fry the meatballs, rotating them with a wooden spoon until they are a golden color. I cooked mine about 6-8 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.
In another medium skillet, heat 1 Tbls olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the shallot and 1/2 tsp. sea salt and cook for another 2 minutes, or until the shallot begins to soften.
Reduce the heat to medium and stir in the flour and 1 Tbls. olive oil to make a paste or roux. Add 1/3 cup of wine, and stir until the mixture is smooth. Whisk in the chicken broth and simmer for about 5 minutes. Add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Serve warm and garnish with more parmesan cheese.

To read more reviews on {affiliate link}
 via Amazon, click the photo below.

Hardcover: 320 pages
PublisherPam Krauss Books; 1St Edition edition (November 3, 2015)
Language: English

  • ISBN-13: 978-0804187923
  • Product Dimensions7.8 x 1 x 9.8 inches

  • Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
    Until next time!
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    Disclaimer: I received my copy of Happy Cooking for review purposes from
     Blogging for Books but all opinions are my own.


    1. What a fun idea to do chicken meatballs with a marsala sauce! That combines two of my favorites. The book looks beautiful.

    2. YUM...those meatballs look amazing! I love Giada. She always has great recipes and a beautiful smile! Will definitely check out the cookbook! Hope you had a fabulous weekend and fun at the party! Hugs!

    3. Good Afternoon Christine, Oh I have seen a few of Giada's cookery programmes when I visited America and then another when I lived in Cyprus. She was cooking her way through the Greek Islands and I really enjoyed her programme, but I have never seen her on English television.
      I do enjoy meatballs, and I think making them which chicken is a good idea, because as you say, eating a little healthier before Christmas is always a good thing, before we tuck into our rich Christmas foods.
      Best Wishes

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    5. Hi Christine, this recipe looks so good. I was just thinking about you. Happy New Year. I hope all is well with you! Take care.
      Julie xo

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