Diva Tasting: Menu; Chicken, Greens, Dessert

Chicken Vinaigrette


  • 1 ( 3-4 Pound) Whole Chicken, Cut Into Pieces
  • 1/8 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Cup Chicken Stock
  • 1 Clove Garlic, Crushed
  • 1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano

  • Salt And Pepper To Taste

  • 1/4 Cup Grated Romano Cheese

  • 1/2 Cup Grated Asiago Cheese

  • 3 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinaigrette


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Place chicken pieces in a 9×13 inch baking dish. Pour oil and stock over chicken and sprinkle with garlic. Season with oregano, salt and pepper and top with cheeses.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for about 45 to 60 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and no longer pink inside.
  4. Pour vinaigrette over chicken and serve.

Mediterranean Chard And Cannellini Bean Side-dish


  • 2 Slices Smoked Bacon, Finely Chopped
  • 1 Onion, Chopped
  • 1 Clove Garlic, Minced
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Freshly Grated Nutmeg
  • 1/8 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 Cup Chicken Broth, Or More As Needed
  • 1 (15 Ounce) Can Cannellini Beans, Drained And Rinsed – Or More To Taste
  • 2 Ounces Parmesan Cheese Rind
  • 1 Bunch Red Or White Swiss Chard
  • 1/4 Cup Uncooked Small Pasta, Such As Orzo
  • 3 Large Fresh Sage Leaves, Minced
  • 5 Leaves Fresh Basil, Coarsely Chopped
  • 4 Tablespoon Grated Parmesan Cheese, Divided
  • 1 Tablespoon Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, Divided


  1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, cook the bacon, onion, garlic, nutmeg, and red pepper flakes until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Pour in chicken broth and cannelloni beans, and bring the mixture to a boil; stir in and the piece of Parmesan cheese rind. Reduce heat to a simmer, and cook while you prepare the chard, about 10 minutes.
  2. Cut the stems from the chard, and slice the stems into pieces about 3/4-inch long. Cut the chard leaves into 1-inch wide ribbons. Stir the chard stems and pasta into the liquid, setting aside the leaves. Reduce heat to a simmer, and gently simmer until the pasta is tender, about 10 minutes. Stir the chard leaves, sage, and basil in and simmer just until wilted, 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. Place in serving bowl and top with Parmesan cheese and a drizzle of olive oil, if desired. Serve with garlic bread and dessert below.

Chocolate Trifle


  • 1 (19.8 Ounce) Package Brownie Mix

  • 1 (3.9 Ounce) Package Instant Chocolate Pudding Mix

  • 1/2 Cup Water

  • 1 (14 Ounce) Can Sweetened Condensed Milk

  • 1 (8 Ounce) Container Frozen Whipped Topping, Thawed

  • 1 (12 Ounce) Container Frozen Whipped Topping, Thawed

  • 1 (1.5 Ounce) Bar Chocolate Candy

  • 1 Cup Walnuts Chopped


  1. Prepare brownie mix according to package directions and cool completely. Cut into 1 inch squares.

  2. In a large bowl, combine pudding mix, water and sweetened condensed milk. Mix until smooth, then fold in 8 ounces whipped topping until no streaks remain.

  3. In a trifle bowl or glass serving dish, place half of the brownies, half of the pudding mixture and half of the 12 ounce container of whipped topping, sprinkle with nuts. Repeat layers. Shave chocolate and nuts onto top layer for garnish. Refrigerate 8 hours before serving.


Diva Ranting: Idiots….

I could rant all day about this kind of idiot but this pretty much says it for us!  Thank you TheHumorPage.com 

Namaste, The Queen Cronista

Diva Tasting: Summer Brisket, Green Beans, Cherry Trifle…

Tangy Brisket


  • 1 (5 pound) beef brisket, trimmed of fat
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can Pepsi Soda
  • 1/2 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 (12 ounce) bottle tomato-based chili sauce
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F .
  2. Season the brisket on all sides with salt and pepper, and place in a large cooking bag and vent as directed. Cover with a layer of sliced onions. In a medium bowl, mix together the soda, chili sauce, and brown sugar. Pour over the roast. Seal bag and place in a large dutch oven and cover
  3. Bake for 4 hours in the preheated oven. Let the brisket rest and cool slightly before removing from bag into pot and slicing. Reheat in the oven with the sauce spooned over the sliced meat.
  4. Serve with dinner rolls, steamed green beans and dessert below…..

Cherry Trifle


1 (21 ounce) can cherry pie filling, divided

1 1/2 cups boiling water

1 (3 ounce) package Black Cherry Flavor Gelatin

1 1/2 cups cold water

5 cups pound cake cubes

3 cups cold half n half

2 pkg. (4 serving size) Cheesecake Flavor Instant Pudding and Pie Filling

1/2 Cup Sour Cream

1 8oz Cream Cheese Softened

1 (8 ounce) tub Extra Creamy Whipped Topping, thawed, divided


Reserve 1/3 cup cherry pie filling for garnish, set aside. Stir boiling water into dry gelatin mix in large bowl at least 2 min. until completely dissolved. Stir in cold water and remaining cherry pie filling. Refrigerate 45 min. or until slightly thickened (consistency of unbeaten egg whites).

Place cake cubes in 3-qt. trifle bowl. Spoon gelatin mixture over cake. Refrigerate 45 min. or until set but not firm (should stick to finger when touched).

Pour half n half into large bowl. Add dry pudding mixes. Beat with on low speed of mixer 2 min. Fold in sour cream and softened cream cheese and beat on low until blended. Gently stir in 2 cups of the whipped topping. Spoon over gelatin mixture in bowl. Refrigerate 2 hours or until set. Top with remaining whipped topping and reserved pie filling. Store leftover dessert in refrigerator.

Variation: You may substitute any of your favorite fruit pie fillings and matching gelatin flavors above. Complete as outlined.

Diva Tasting: Chard Pesto with Mediterranean Bean Salad and Key Lime Bars….

Pesto with Swiss Chard


  • 1/2 Cup Olive Oil, Divided
  • 10 Leaves Swiss Chard, Chopped
  • 4 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Cup Basil Leaves
  • 1 Cup Pecans
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Sea Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
  • 1 (3 Ounce) Package Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Cup Mozzarella Shredded
  • Salt And Ground Black Pepper To Taste
  • 1 Box of Angel Hair Pasta Prepared to Directions


  1. Heat 2 teaspoons of the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat; cook and stir the Swiss chard and garlic in the hot oil until the chard leaves have wilted, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  2. Process the basil, pecans, sea salt, Parmesan cheese, and remaining olive oil in a food processor until all the ingredients are well integrated. Add the Swiss chard mixture and the lemon juice to the food processor; continue chopping until the mixture is pureed. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Serve over Drained Angel Hair pasta toss to let flavors marry. Top with mozzarella and serve with garlic bread and Mediterranean Bean salad and dessert below.

Mediterranean Bean Salad


  • 1/4 Cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 Tablespoons Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
  • Zest Of One Lemon
  • 2 Teaspoons Minced Garlic, Or To Taste
  • Sea Salt To Taste
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper To Taste
  • 1 Bunch Italian Flat-Leaf Parsley, Chopped
  • 1 Cup Feta Cheese
  • 1 (15 Ounce) Can Cannelloni Beans, Drained And Rinsed
  • 1 (15 Ounce) Can Garbanzo Beans, Drained And Rinsed
  • 1 Cup Minced Red Onion, Or To Taste


Whisk olive oil, lemon juice and zest, and garlic together in a bowl; season with salt and pepper. Add parsley, cannelloni beans, garbanzo beans, onion and feta; toss to coat. ; season with salt and pepper.

Key Lime Pie Bars

  • 1pkg Short Bread Cookies
  • 1 Container (16 Oz) Frozen Whipped Topping, Thawed
  • 2 Cans (14 Oz Each) Sweetened Condensed Milk (not Evaporated)
  • 5to 6 Large Limes (3/4 Cup Lime Juice And 2 Tablespoons Grated Peel)
  • 2 Containers (6 Oz Each) Yogurt Key Lime Pie Flavor

Break cookies into gallon-size resealable food-storage plastic bag. Seal bag, and finely crush cookies with rolling pin.

Pour finely crushed cookies into large bowl; stir in 1 cup of the thawed whipped topping. Press mixture into ungreased 13×9-inch pan

In large bowl, mix condensed milk and lime juice; beat with electric mixer on medium speed until thick and smooth. Fold remaining whipped topping and yogurt into milk mixture. Spoon onto cookie crust. Top with grated lime peel. Cover and refrigerate about 8 hours or until completely set. Cut into 5 rows by 4 rows. Cover and refrigerate leftovers.


Good Health Tips:Let’s Get to Know Swiss Chard…

The Juicy Crones tend to buck trends.  I for one prefer Swiss Chard to the newly popular kale.  Below are some facts for gardening and cooking it.  Enjoy…


The Queen Cronista…

Swiss Chard Facts

Chard is a veggie super-hero! It offers a powerful punch of vitamins and a variety of preparation options–from salads to cooked dishes. And chard makes a terrific stand-in for asparagus or spinach.

Five Reasons You Should Grow Chard
1. Chard produces in less-than-ideal soil and shade.
2. It resists most plant diseases, and insect infestations are fairly rare. (Though watch for deer in fall.)
3. Chard requires little care–just water regularly, and cut and discard any leaves that wilt or turn brown before you can harvest them.
4. Long after your asparagus, spinach, and other greens close up shop for the season, Swiss chard keeps on giving, right up to the first hard frost. A four- to six-foot row of plants spaced eight to ten inches apart will keep a family in the green all season.
5. It’s pretty! Those bright stalks and shiny ribbed leaves look right at home in a flower border.

How to Grow Chard
Chard is super-easy to grow, making it an ideal choice for beginning gardeners–it thrives even in poor soil.

Start seedlings indoors and transplant, or start from seed outdoors just before the last frost.

You can begin harvesting as soon as the leaves grow large enough to use–young plants provide the most flavor.

Don’t worry about cutting them to about an inch above the soil or cutting stalks from the outside. These plants replenish for re-harvest again and again through the fall, and the leaves get tastier as the weather gets cooler.

Contact your local garden center or horticulture extension office to find out what grows best in your own backyard.

Chard: Chock-full of Nutrition
A one-cup serving of boiled Swiss chard contains a mere 35 calories, yet provides:

Vitamin K–More than 600 percent of the recommended daily value. Important in blood clotting.

Vitamin A–More than 100 percent of the recommended daily value. Important in visual health.

Vitamin C–42 percent of the recommended daily value. Helps the immune system; protects cells against damage.

Magnesium–47 percent of the recommended daily value. Helps bone health; important in muscle function.

Potassium–20 percent of the recommended daily value. Helps maintain normal blood pressure levels; aids heart function.

Iron–50 percent of the recommended daily value. Helps prevent anemia; can boost energy; carries oxygen in the blood.

Vitamin E–22 percent of the recommended daily value. Acts as an antioxidant; helps protect cells against damage.

Dietary fiber–14 percent of the recommended daily value. Can reduce high cholesterol levels; promotes intestinal health.

Main Dishes

Swiss Chard with Garbanzo Beans and Fresh Tomatoes

Quinoa Chard Pilaf

Mediterranean Pasta with Greens

Spinach and Red Chard Quiche

Salmon and Swiss Chard Quiche

Sauteed Swiss Chard with Parmesan Cheese

Italian-Style Swiss Chard

Red Chard and Caramelized Onions

Smart Tips!

Store unwashed chard in a plastic bag in the fridge; it will keep for several days.

With a cold frame, you can usually harvest fresh chard through December–and avoid skyrocketing lettuce prices

Did You Know?

Swiss chard is a member of the beet family–it just doesn’t have a bulb.

Swiss chard isn’t native to Switzerland, but to the Mediterranean region.

Chard is also considered a good source of copper, calcium, vitamin B2, and Vitamin B6.

Savory Swiss Chard with Portobellos


  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
  • 1 Clove Garlic, Crushed And Chopped
  • 1 (8 Ounce) Package Portobello Mushrooms, Stemmed And Cut Into 1/2-Inch Wide By 2-Inch Long Pieces
  • 1 Leek, Chopped
  • 1 Cup Chicken Broth
  • 1 Bunch Swiss Chard, Trimmed And Chopped
  • 2 Cups Grated Parmesan Cheese


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Stir in the red pepper, garlic, and portobello mushrooms. Cook and stir until the mushroom has softened and begun to release its liquid, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the leek, and continue cooking until the leek has softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in the chicken broth and Swiss chard. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover, and simmer until the chard leaves have wilted, about 10 minutes. Remove the lid, and continue cooking until the chard is tender and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese; let stand until melted.

Diva Tasting: Cheese, Chicken and Dumplings…

Cheese, Chicken and Dumplings


1box Hamburger Helper™ Cheddar Cheese Melt
3 Cups Chicken Broth
2 Cups Half N Half
2 Tablespoons Butter Or Margarine
2 Cups Cubed Deli Rotisserie Chicken ( 2 1/2-Lb Chicken)
1 Can Refrigerated Buttermilk Biscuits
Chopped Fresh Parsley, If Desired
Paprika, If Desired


1 . In 12-inch skillet, mix sauce mix (from Hamburger Helper box), chicken broth, milk, butter. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Stir in uncooked pasta (from Hamburger Helper box) and chicken. Return to boiling. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2 . Meanwhile, cut biscuits into fourths. Place biscuits on hot mixture gently fold into mixture. Cover; cook over medium heat 10 to 12 minutes or until biscuits are no longer doughy in center

3 . Remove from heat. Sprinkle with parsley and paprika.

Serve with a garden salad

Diva Musing: Still on a Health Kick…..

My daughter-in-law, fitness expert and nutritionist gave me a wonderful book “Belly Fat to Belly Flat”.  I give it as gifts now.  Anyway, I discovered the wonderful world of MUFA’s or good fats.  Below is one slant for your review.  As always do your own research and check with your physician if needed.  

Flat Belly Diet Foods

Meet the MUFAs! Eat these delicious foods to reduce belly fat


What are MUFAs?

MUFAs (pronounced moo-fah) are monounsaturated fatty acids, plant-based fats found in some of the world’s most delicious foods—avocado, nuts and seeds, oils, olives, and dark chocolate! Studies show that these good-for-you fats enhance heart health and protect against chronic disease. And now the latest research shows that these dietary superstars may even target fat where it’s hardest to lose—in your belly!

Learn more about the Flat Belly Diet.

Find out how you can flatten your belly for good! Sign up for the complete Flat Belly Diet online!


Pick your MUFA: Canola oil, flaxseed oil, olive oil, peanut oil, pesto sauce, safflower oil, sesame oil, soybean oil, sunflower oil, walnut oil

Use them like this: Stir-fry with sesame, peanut, or canola oil; pan-fry in walnut or olive oil; cook with safflower, soybean, or sunflower oil; use flaxseed oil in salad dressings (flaxseed oil cannot be used for cooking)

One serving equals: 1 tablespoon

Recipe: Leafy Grilled Chicken Salad with Creamy Balsamic Dressing with nuts and seeds

Nuts and seeds

Pick your MUFA: Almonds, Brazil nuts, natural peanut butter, dry-roasted cashews, dry-roasted peanuts, dry-roasted sunflower seeds, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, pine nuts, pistachios, roasted pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts

Use them like this: Eat as a snack; sprinkle on a salad

One serving equals: 2 tablespoons

Recipe: Vietnamese Beef Salad

Pick your MUFA: Florida avocado, Hass avocado

Use them like this: Slice and serve with a salad or any entrée; mash with lime juice, salt and pepper and serve with chips; chop and fold into store-bought salsa

One serving equals: 1/4 cup

Recipe: Key West Chicken-Avocado Sandwich


Pick your MUFA: Black olives, black olive tapenade, green olives, green olive tapenade

Use them like this: Serve olives as a snack; sprinkle sliced olives on pizzas, salads, or pastas; spread tapenade on crackers or sandwiches

One serving equals: 10 large olives or 2 tablespoons of tapenade

Recipe: Mediterranean Salad-Wraps

Dark chocolate

Pick your MUFA: Dark or semisweet chocolate chips, shavings, or chunks

Use them like this: Any way you crave!

One serving equals: 1/4 cup

Recipe: Chocolate Pudding with Bananas and Graham Crackers

Garlic additional

1 Tablespoon prefer Minced. Use in all savory dishes to taste.