Slow Food $5.

00 Value Meal Challenge
Recipes created by Chef Maria Reina. For more information check out her web site at: www.bellacucinamaria.com and her blog at: www.bellacucinamaria.blogspot.com.

In a non-stick pan with a tablespoon of oil carefully sear the rolls all the way around. This will take up to 10 minutes. Once you achieve a nice golden brown all the way around remove the rolls and cover loosely with foil to keep them warm. Now for the sauce: In the same pan melt the butter and add the cornmeal. (When I made this in Burlington, I had to improvise when I discovered Elinor did not have flour in the cabinet to make the roux, or thickener, for the sauce. But you know what? The cornmeal added a really nice earthy quality that everyone liked.) When it gets slightly foamy slowly add the remaining stock, 1/2 cup at a time. When the sauce reaches a consistency of thin to medium thickness add the chicken back along with a tablespoon of chopped celery greens. Lower the heat and simmer for another 5 minutes bathing the chicken rolls in the sauce. Cost of ingredients is $9.60 or $2.40 per person. *Cook’s note: If you are not able to find carrots with green tops parsley may be substituted. The cost difference will be a wash as the carrots with green tops are approximately $1.99 and a regular bag plus the parsley will be about the same.

Chicken, Kale and Mushroom Roulades Serves 4 ½ Onion, ¼” dice (.$25) 1 Garlic Clove, minced ($.04) 8 oz of Mushrooms, sliced ($1.99) 1 bunch of Kale, about 1 pound, rib removed and sliced very thin ($.99) 1 17 oz carton of low sodium Chicken Stock ($1.00) 1 lb thin sliced Chicken Breast Cutlets, rinsed and pat dry ($3.99) 2 tablespoons Butter ($.24) 2 tablespoons Corn Meal ($.19) 2 tablespoons Grated Parmesan Cheese ($.35) Kosher Salt ($.03) Ground Black Pepper ($.02) 2 tablespoons Chopped Celery Greens Olive Oil ($.50) In a large pan sauté the onions with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and ¼ teaspoon each of salt and pepper. When they just begin to get soft add the garlic, mushrooms and the 1 tablespoon of chopped carrot greens from the previous recipe. Add another ¼ teaspoon each of salt and pepper and sauté until the mushrooms become golden and most of the liquid evaporates. Add the kale to the pan gently tossing with the mushrooms. Add another ¼ teaspoon each of salt and pepper and ½ cup of stock. Cover and steam for 5 minutes, or until the kale is soft. Remove from pan and allow to cool on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Lay your chicken out on a plastic cutting board. Brush both sides with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle each piece with a little corn meal and parmesan cheese. Divide the cooled kale mix evenly between each of the thin cutlets leaving a 1/4 edge around each. (The filling will spread out a little when you roll it.) Roll each firmly and fasten with either a toothpick in one or two places to hold the rolls together, or with kitchen twine.

Slow Food $5.00 Value Meal Challenge
Recipes created by Chef Maria Reina. For more information check out her web site at: www.bellacucinamaria.com and her blog at: www.bellacucinamaria.blogspot.com. Quinoa Cakes with Caramelized Vegetables Serves 4 ¾ cup of Quinoa ($1.87) 1 ½ cups of Water Kosher Salt ($.03) Ground Black Pepper ($.02) 3 Carrots, ¼” dice ($.99) 1 Celery Rib, ¼” dice ($.15) 1/2 Onion, ¼” dice ($.25) 1 Garlic Clove, minced ($.04) 1 Egg, beaten ($.20) 2 tablespoons Corn Meal ($.19) *Carrot Greens, from the carrots Canola Oil ($.24) Add ½ teaspoon of salt and quinoa to a pot with the boiling water. Once the water comes back to a boil lower the heat and cover. Simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes covered. Lay the quinoa out on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and let it cool completely. This will take about 30 minutes. Meanwhile sauté the vegetables with ½ teaspoon of salt and ½ teaspoon ground black pepper. Sauté for 5-10 minutes until caramelized. Remove from pan and mix in with the cooling quinoa. Once the quinoa mix is completely cold add to a mixing bowl with the egg and sprinkle the cornmeal over it. Add another ¼ teaspoon each of salt and pepper and about 2 tablespoons of finely chopped carrot greens. (You will have more greens left to use with the chicken recipe below.) Mix well and form into 4 patties. Let the patties rest for about 5 minutes. In a non-stick pan heat 2 tablespoons of oil and gently place the patties in a hot pan. Cook for about 2-4 minutes on each side to get a nice golden crust. Serve hot or at room temperature. Total cost of ingredients is $3.98, or .$99 per person.

When I realized I had a little money to spare I thought I would give you one of the easiest recipes I have in my box – focaccia bread. What follows is the most basic version. I have done toppings in all shapes and sizes … olives, red pepper, cheese, meat … you name it. The pizza dough is a blank canvas and you can be as crazy and creative as you like. All you need is a little olive oil and some herbs! Focaccia Bread Serves 4 1 ball of prepared Pizza Dough, room temperature ($2.00) 2 tablespoons of Olive Oil ($.50) 2 teaspoons of blended dry herbs (.50) Kosher Salt ($.03) Ground Black Pepper ($.02) Place the dough in an oiled bowl and let rise until doubled in a warm spot in the kitchen. Punch down and press out into a small oiled cookie sheet, cover and let rise again for about 30 minutes. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle with herbs, salt and pepper. Place in a preheated 450 degree oven for 5 to 10 minutes until puffed and golden. Serve warm or at room temperature. Cost of ingredients: $3.05 or $.76 per person.

So let’s recap: Quinoa Cake: $.99 Chicken Roulade: $2.40 Focaccia Bread: $.76 Total meal = $4.15 per person!