Sunday, October 23, 2011

Corkscrew Chicken Pasta

*disregard the iphone quality-and dream of cheesy chicken pasta!

i spent the past few days in raleigh & boca raton & couldn't wait to get home to relax & enjoy a home-cooked meal. there's something about traveling that always leaves me wanting something from my own kitchen. and, as the weather turns cooler, i love to cozy up on the couch with a bowl of pasta...this one, packed with veggies & protein, left me full but not overly stuffed.

i'm off to puerto rico friday so i'll try to get in as many meals as possible this week...and share them with you!

{corkscrew chicken pasta}

ingredients {in order of use}
*serves 4-6
  • 1/2 {1 pound} box corkscrew pasta
  • 1 {7 ounce} bag baby spinach
  • 1 1/4 pound chicken breasts halves
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup sliced, white mushrooms
  • 3/4 cup sun-dried tomato strips {dried, if packed in oil}
  • 1 can {10 3/4 ounce} 98% fat free campbell's cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup {or more} shredded parmesan cheese

1. dice chicken into 1/2-inch pieces & place on a plate. season with salt & pepper & set aside.

2. bring a large pot of salted water to a boil & cook noodles. for last minute of cooking, add spinach. reserve 1 cup of pasta water & drain.

3. in a large skillet, heat olive oil to medium-high heat. add chicken & cook until browning. add garlic, mushrooms & cook for another minute. add tomato, soup, red pepper flakes & 1/2 cup of reserved pasta water & bring to a boil. reduce heat to low & stir to mix. add in pasta/spinach & toss to coat. serve in bowls, warm & top with shredded parmesan cheese!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Grilled Picante Chicken Skewers

it was a big week-not only did i make butternut squash soup, i had my grill master toss these easy & healthy chicken skewers on the coals for a last ditch effort to save summer. it's 30-degrees out. but these delicious chicken bites were a win.

oh, & another bit of business i'd like to discuss...commercials.

these mormon commercials. all. over. t.v.

they are funny. odd. weird. uncomfortable. i'm just confused. either way i'm getting on the cain train...if you can sell pizza, by god you can run a country.

secondly, the charmin commercial for target. it starts with a cute little lady bug trick o' treater ringing a door bell....and then my 4 pound dog goes BALLISTIC. i'm talking all out attacks the front door thinking it's our door bell. i only know it's a charmin target commercial b/c it just came on in my hotel room & i shot out of my bed to grab...well, nothing. then i realized there was actually a product advertised. again, funny. odd. weird. but she deals with things like i deal with outbursts like that.

*shit this for real?!

*it is for real...and it has a topper!!

and lastly, before we get to the actual recipe, i leave you with a question i've been contemplating lately. do you tip if you get take out?!

{grilled picante chicken skewers}

ingredients {in order of use} *serves 2-4
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken tenders
  • 3/4 cup salsa
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
1. place one chicken tender in a plastic bag & using a soup can, pound to an even thickness. continue with all tenders & toss in a gallon-sized baggie.

2. add all other ingredients & toss to coat. marinate for 2-4 hours.

3. thread the chicken on a skewer accordion-style. grill for approx. 10 minutes, brushing with picante sauce marinade. serve warm over rice, salad or tacos!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Curried Butternut Squash Soup

my goodness...i've been absent. unfortunately, but fortunately, my new job keeps me traveling & out of the kitchen. i've spent the last few weeks dining in Chick-fil-a's along 1-40, Starbucks along A1A & a highlight, fabulous BBQ in the Memphis airport. but sadly, my love of cooking & blogging has been on a hold since I really haven't cooked a darn thing in almost a MONTH!

so this weekend, as hubs & i were traveling back to atlanta, we stopped to pick up a few pumpkins at mark's melon patch near albany, ga.

*and on a side note...5 pumpkins were $30. that wouldn't have gotten me the seeds in atlanta.

anyway, while we were there i picked up a butternut squash because i've been dying to make soup since fall is in the air. i made a curried soup with it that was easy, can be frozen & thawed later & pairs nicely with toasted pita points!

{curried butternut squash soup}

ingredients {in order of use}
*serves 6-8
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 medium sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 coves garlic, minced
  • 1 {3 pound} butternut squash, peeled, seeded & cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 6 cups fat-free chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons honey

1. over medium heat, heat oil in a large stockpot or dutch oven. add onions, garlic & saute until soft, but not brown, approx. 7 minutes.

2. add the butternut squash, broth, curry & salt & bring to a boil. boil for around 5 minutes & reduce heat to medium-low & simmer until squash is tender, approx. 15 minutes. stir in honey.

3. working in batches, puree ingredients in a blender or food processor. once pureed, add to a large, clean bowl to keep separate from non-pureed ingredients. continue & when all is pureed, add back to stock pot. season with salt & pepper, serve warm with an optional dollop of yogurt & chives!
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