Meal Planning Mondays: Recipes To Try for the Week of 3/18 – 3/24/2013

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Meal Planning Mondays are an experiment to see what works for my family. I like trying new recipes. I have too many copycat Minneapolis restaurant recipes that are not being utilized. This week I committ to making these recipes… Kota Sto Phyllo and Pecan Crusted Walleye. These recipes will continue to be made ahead time and frozen.

Kota Sto Phyllo

Adapted From the kitchen of Christos Greek Restaurant

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4 five-ounce chicken breasts, boneless, skinless
2 lb fresh spinach
1/4 cup virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup finely chopped green onion
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3 tbsp chopped fresh dill
5 leeks, roots and tough outer leaves removed; diced
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup ricotta cheese
3/4 lb kasseri cheese, shredded
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
12 sheets phyllo dough
Salt and pepper to taste

Prep Day

Filling Preparation: Wash and stem spinach; drain thoroughly; cut into 1/4 inch lengths.
In large skillet, heat oil. Add onions, leeks, garlic and dill; sauté until lightly browned and fragrant (2-3 minutes). Add spinach and continue to sauté until all moisture has evaporated. Season with salt and pepper. Let sauté mix cool completely. Add eggs and cheese; mix thoroughly by hand.

Chicken Preparation: Pound chicken breasts out to flatten; season with salt and pepper

Assembly: Create three-ounce balls out of the finished filling mix and set aside. Lay pounded chicken breast down and place a ball of filling over it. Roll chicken breast around the filling; set aside on a baking sheet with parchment paper.

To Freeze: Flash freeze in a single layer. Once frozen wrap individually in plastic wrap and place in labeled freezer bag till ready to use.

Serve Day – Thaw chicken bundles and phyllo.

To Finish Assembly: Lay one sheet of phyllo dough flat on a work surface. Brush the phyllo lightly with melted butter working from the edge towards the center. Lay a second sheet of phyllo over the first, again buttering lightly. Repeat a third time. Lay a roll of chicken breast with filling at the center of each phyllo half. Fold the ends over the chicken; then fold in the sides and tightly roll the ball away from you. Brush the roll lightly with butter and place it seam-side down on an un-greased baking sheet. Repeat the process until the batch of filling is used up.

Cooking: Bake on baking sheet, at least an inch apart, in preheated oven at 400 degrees until golden (25-30 minutes). Use plunge thermometer to insure 155 degree temperature at core, or cut one in half and insure chicken is done.

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Pecan Crusted Walleye

Adapted From the Kitchen of Twin City Grill in the Mall of America

4 ea. 5-6 oz. Walleye Filets

1 cup Seasoned Flour (1 cup All purpose flour, ¼ tsp. Ground black pepper, 2 tsp. Salt, 1 tsp. Onion powder, ¼ tsp. granulated garlic , ½ tsp. Paprika. Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.)

3 ea. Egg Whites

3 cups Pecan Bread Crumbs (6 cups Panko Bread crumbs, ¼ tsp. ground black pepper, 2 oz. unsalted Butter, 1/4 tsp chopped garlic, pinch Red Pepper Flakes, Pinch Oregano, 1/2 tsp Salt, 1/2 cup Chopped parsley, 3 cups Chopped Pecans. Place all ingredients, except Parsley, pecans, and bread crumbs, in a microwave safe bowl and cook until butter is melted. Place bread crumbs and parsley in a large bowl and mix together. Add butter mixture and mix until well combined. Add Pecans and mix well.)

Salt and Pepper
Vegetable oil

Prep Day: Start by making sure the walleye fillets are deboned and clean of any skin. Crack eggs separate whites into a bowl and beat until frothy to make an egg wash. Use three large shallow dishes and place seasoned flour, egg wash, and pecan bread crumbs in separate dishes.

Season 1 walleye filet with salt and pepper, then place in seasoned flour and toss to coat well. Lift out and shake off excess flour, then place in egg wash and coat well. Lift out and allow egg wash to drain a little then place in bread crumbs, toss to coat evenly. Remove from bread crumbs, shake off any excess bread crumbs and transfer to a plate and repeat process until all walleye filets are breaded.

Please make sure to wash and sanitize all tools and surfaces after working with raw fish products.

To Freeze: Place on baking tray with parchment paper. Freeze in a single layer. Once frozen wrap individually in plastic wrap and place in labeled freezer bag till ready to use.

Serve Day: Thaw. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. On stove top heat a large skillet on Med. High heat and place enough vegetable oil to coat bottom of pan, should be a couple of table spoons. When oil is hot carefully place breaded walleye filet and cook until brown on one side. Turn off flame and flip over walleye filet place entire skillet in oven and bake about 5-6 minutes, or until evenly browned and cooked throughout.

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