Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Chicken Penne with Lemon Cream Sauce

Chicken Penne w/ Lemon Cream Sauce
submitted by Brooke B. Iverson
1 lb penne pasta
5 Tbls EVOO
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced into small cubes
1 tsp basil
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp Oregano
Pinch of ground pepper, plus 1/4 tsp
Pinch of large ground salt
1 cup chicken broth (I use reduced sodium)
2 cups heavy cream
Zest of 1 lemon
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Juice of 2 lemons (I actually use 3 lemons b/c I LOVE the lemon flavor, but that is too much for most people)
Sprinkling of chopped fresh parsley

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook your pasta until tender but still firm. Drain.

While pasta is cooking, heat the EVOO in a large skillet over medium-high. Season your cubed chicken with the basil, Italian seasoning and oregano, as well as a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook the chicken in the oil until golden brown. Use a slotted spoon to remove the chicken and set aside, then drain any left over oil from the pan (do not clean out the pan, you want any little leftover bits). Add the chicken broth to the pan and cook over medium-high heat, scraping the brown bits off the bottom. Add the cream, lemon zest, and cayenne. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the pasta, chicken, pinch of salt and pepper, fresh lemon juice and the parsley. Stir to combine and coat pasta and chicken with the sauce and serve.

This meal is super fast to make so it is perfect for a busy week night, and it stores and reheats well. It is also mega easy, anybody can make it. Plus, of course, it is very yummy! Like I said, I like mucho lemon flavor so I use extra lemon juice and even extra lemon zest - it is a nice surprise when somebody bites into the dish and gets that fresh lemon kick. For some people, however, that is too much so if you are not a lemon-lover like I am, just stick with the above amounts, or even less lemon juice. Another tip for lemon-lovers, when you season the chicken sprinkle some lemon juice directly on that as well and let sit for about 20 minutes in the herbs and lemon juice. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Coconut Pecan Bars

I know that we have already put the recipe for these bars on our blog, but I had to post another picture just to show scrumptious they are!! They are so ooey gooey delicious and even if you don't like pecans or coconut - you will still love these bars! These are the hit of every party and I can't make them enough!!For recipe - see Jamie's previous posting. Be sure to refrigerate these and just before serving bring to room temperature. You will want these to set so best if made ahead of time.

Berry Spinach Salad

Jamie brought this delicious salad to a BBQ last with and loved it so much that I've made it twice this week for other BBQ's we've been to. The sweetness of the strawberries and candied walnuts and the sharpness of the feta cheese give this salad the most delicious flavor. And the best part is how fast and easy this is to make - thanks for the idea Jamie!
Berry Spinach Salad
Jamie Rice Recipe

1 bag spinach leaves
feta cheese
candied walnuts (chopped)
*To candy walnuts - equal part walnuts and sugar stirring constantly until sugar caramelizes and coats walnuts. Sugar will burn very fast so stir constantly and do not leave unattended.

Cream Cheese Chicken Enchiladas with Black Bean & Corn Salsa

Here is another chicken enchilada recipe that I think you might all enjoy and I promise these are not the only thing I make for dinner. I usually have the ingredients on hand so this become my go-to meal whenever I am in a hurry. The black bean salsa is so fresh and flavorful and is a perfect BBQ side dish. Enjoy!
Cream Cheese Chicken Enchiladas:
submitted by: Liz Harrison
2 boneless/skinless chicken breasts (cooked and shredded)
1 pkg. cream cheese (I use the 1/3 less fat)
1 jar salsa
1 can mild green enchilada sauce
monterey or colby jack cheese
cilantro & lime for garnishing
*Once your chicken is cooked and shredded, add the room temp. cream cheese and salsa to a large bowl and mix together. Assemble as usual - tortilla, chicken mixture, cheese, and roll up. Once all enchiladas are made, pour the green enchilada sauce over top and finish with cheese. Bake at 350 degrees uncovered for 30 minutes. (The honey lime cream enchilada sauce would be yummy on these as well.)
*These are very kid friendly, so if you want to spice it up a bit add a little chili powder and cumin to chicken.
Black Bean and Corn Salsa:
Adapted from: Ivory Favorites
1 15oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
8 oz. frozen corn
1/2 - 1 cup chopped ripe tomatoes
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 T. chopped green onions
2 T. chopped red onions
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 T. oil
1 tsp. ground cumin
salt and pepper
avocado (to your liking)
Combine ingredients in a large bowl and allow to chill at least 2 hrs. or overnight. Just before serving add in avocado and a little extra lime juice. Enjoy!!