When you want a quick meal that tastes homemade but doesn’t take too long to prepare, rotisserie chicken is your best friend. Pick one up from your supermarket on your way home from work this week, because I’ve included it in this week’s menu. Rotisserie chicken thrown on top of a homemade pizza is a quick and easy crowd-pleaser that requires minimal cleanup. I buy mine from Trader Joe’s (it’s delicious and, at $1.99, incredibly affordable). However, most local pizzerias should be willing to sell you their dough for a low price. Pizza dough freezes excellently, so be sure to load up and freeze in individual plastic bags for whenever the craving strikes.

Grocery list:
1 prepared whole-wheat pizza crust
1 jar pizza sauce (Trader Joe’s makes a great one.)
1 package reduced-fat mozzarella cheese
Blue-cheese crumbles
Buffalo sauce (This can be found in the condiment section of the grocery store.)
1 rotisserie chicken
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas
2 garlic cloves
Italian bread (Best to get this from your supermarket’s bakery.)
Arugula
1 log herbed goat cheese
Spicy honey mustard (Mendocino mustard is delicious if you can find it.)
1 onion
1 jalapeno pepper
1 (1-inch) knob ginger
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
Tomato paste
1 lemon
Coriander
Cumin
Garam masala (Look for this in the international section of your supermarket.)
Turmeric
Cayenne pepper
Butter

Buffalo Chicken Pizza
If you don’t have a rolling pin, use a wine bottle to spread the dough. I like to serve this with a side salad of celery, tomatoes, and creamy blue-cheese dressing!
Makes one pizza

1 prepared whole-wheat pizza crust (Alternatively, you can bake your own. My tried and true recipe can be found here.)
1 jar pizza sauce
1 cup buffalo sauce
2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
1 package reduced-fat mozzarella cheese
1 cup blue-cheese crumbles
1/2 cup chopped celery

Preheat oven to 450°. In a large bowl, combine the shredded cooked chicken with buffalo sauce and toss well to coat. Set aside.

If pizza crust has already been cooked, just spread the pizza sauce on top. If you are working with dough, flour your counter and roll out to a large pizza shape. (I still can’t get my dough to form a perfect circle, even after graduating from culinary school.) Rectangles are fine, too! Spread the pizza sauce on top. Then, sprinkle the cheese and sauced-up chicken. Finish with the celery and blue-cheese crumbles, making sure everything is even and not too close to the edge.

If you are working with dough and have a pizza stone, use it! This will ensure the most even baking. If not, just use a cookie sheet heavily dusted with cornmeal (not flour!). Bake the pizza for about 12 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the crust is done. Wait a few minutes before slicing, and then enjoy!

Chicken and Goat Cheese Paninis
These hot sandwiches are easy to prepare and extra delicious as they have an ample amount of fresh goat cheese.
Makes 4 sandwiches

8 slices thick Italian bread (Best to get this from your supermarket’s bakery)
8 ounces herbed goat cheese
Arugula
2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken, light and dark meat, or whatever you prefer
Spicy honey mustard (Mendocino mustard is delicious if you can find it.)

Preheat a panini or sandwich press, or, alternatively, heat up a skillet to medium-high heat on the stove.

On 4 slices of bread, spread about 2 tablespoons of the goat cheese, covering the entire surface area of the slice well. On the other 4 slices, smear mustard and layer with arugula.

Spread the shredded chicken on top of the goat cheese–covered slices and press gently. Top with mustard-covered slices.

Spray your skillet or your sandwich press with cooking spray, and then place the sandwiches on it. If you are using a skillet, top with another heavy skillet so that the sandwiches are pressed down. Cook until the bread has turned golden brown and slightly crisped. Serve with additional mustard to dip and a fresh fruit salad.
channa-masala

Channa Masala
This is ridiculously easy to make and easy to freeze as well. Enjoy with hot naan bread—Trader Joe’s garlic is my favorite!
Serves 4

2 tablespoons butter
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, smashed and chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1 (1-inch) knob ginger, peeled and chopped
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon coriander
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4-1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon turmeric
2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 teaspoon garam masala
Juice from 1/2 lemon

In a large cast-iron skillet, heat the butter. Once melted, add the onions and cook for about 15 minutes on medium-low heat, or until golden brown.
When the onions have caramelized, add the garlic, ginger, and jalapeno, and stir well. Cook for about 2 minutes or until it starts to smell like heaven on earth.
Add the tomato paste and pince (allow the tomato paste to cook down) using above photos as an example. This is very important, and if you don’t do it right, your dish will not be very flavorful.
Add the coriander, cumin, salt, cayenne, and turmeric, and stir well. Then add the diced tomatoes, chickpeas, and garam masala.
Cook for about 5 minutes or until the chickpeas have heated through. Finish with a squeeze of lemon, and top with plain yogurt and cilantro if desired.