Friday, August 17, 2012


The summer has whizzed by and I'm seriously working on my baking schedule for BONNIBAKES, which will begin September 10th. You can sign up to receive "Follow By Email" (to the side of this post) and be emailed whenever a new blog post & weekly menu appears. However, in the meantime, I have to eat.

The other day media was agog celebrating what would have been Julia Child's 100th birthday. She deserved it all, but I'm sad that she isn't here to physically embrace. My personal relationship with Julia started in 1967 when we received her first French cookbook as a wedding present. Having grown up in a kosher household, most entries were exciting & exotic to me. A few years later, with an infant in the house, I decided to WOW the important dinner guests that my husband had invited. I literally read that book from cover to cover and  finally decided on "Veal Prince Orloff" as the main course. It was beyond an all day affair. 

It meant buying a saddle of veal, the most expensive piece of meat I'd ever ordered, at a time when my weekly housekeeping budget was only $25. Hey, it was the sixties and he was still King of our castle!! I love complicated recipes, and this one didn't disappoint the internationally known writers and muscians at our table that night. The baby was great and supportive in between nursing. Needless to say, it was a recipe I've never attempted again.

This recipe by comparison is simple, quick and delicious. If you haven't pounded a chicken breast before into a thin scallopine, it isn't rocket science. I took one good sized breast and with firm pressure on top, and a sharp knife, horizontally split it in two. Then with plastic wrap on top & bottom, bang it with the flat bottom of a skillet reducing it to a thin even splat. The picture above is one half of the breast flattened out, then covered in sauteed spinach, caramelized onions and Feta cheese. Just waiting to be rolled up.

You roll each one up, securing the ends with toothpicks, then roll in Panko breadcrumbs. Place in the pan, drizzle with melted butter and bake. That's it. It's melt in your mouth yummy stuff.

The recipe is below and if you have any questions, email me at

FLORENTINE CHICKEN ROLL-UPS         yield: 2 hearty portions


        1 chicken breast, split in half & pounded thin
        2 tablespoons olive oil
        1 small onion, sliced 
        1  minced garlic clove
        8 ounces fresh spinach ( frozen works great)
        1/4 cup feta cheese
        1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
        1/4 cup butter ( melted)


Preheat oven to 350 with rack in middle

Prepare chicken by slicing 1 thick chicken breast in half and pound each until thin

Cook onion & garlic in 1TBL oil on top of stove at MED until softened and turning golden. Set aside

In the same skillet add 1TBL oil, saute spinach over MED-HIGH until limp. Drain liquid & set aside

Place a thin layer of spinach, onions and Feta over the two pounded chicken breasts  

Roll each breast around filling  like a taco) and secure ends with toothpicks

Press each rounded breast in bread crumbs until well coated

Spray Pam on baking sheet, then pour melted butter over each roll-up

Bake for 30 minutes and serve and enjoy


It's been a year since I adopted (the above adorable) TWINKIE from Manatee County's Animal Services. She is patient (doesn't need to out in the morning until 11am), tolerant (accepts that kibble doesn't always come with something "human"), amusing (when that stringy toy gets catapulted over her head) and has a great sense of humor regarding my ability to train anything (children, dogs or gerbils). 

Yesterday was the first time that I brought her to the vet. She needed a cadre of annual shots and a once-over. Amazingly there was a total look alike 4 year old pure Bichon in the waiting room across from us. They had matching faces...eerie, since I was told she is a Maltese-mix. Maybe a Malti-Bich (with a silent "T"), or whatever those cutesy designer names are. But it was the way she handled herself in the examining room that impressed all of us. She endured a lengthly blood draw (15 lb dogs don't have fleshy legs) and three injections but never flinched or moaned. Twink is 100% solid courage...and she's never devulged her shady past. She's an inspiration to us all and has inspired me to bake some DOG COOKIES IN HER HONOR. Coming soon.

Hugs from the TreeHouse,
    Bonni & Twinkie-The-Braveheart

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