Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Rustic Chicken Sausages Sauté

Rustic Chicken Sausage & Pasta

2 links of Tomato Basil Chicken Sausage, sliced
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup chopped red onion
3 cloves of garlic, sliced
3/4 cup coarsely chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup sliced fresh San Marzano tomatoes or Heirloom cherry tomatoes
1/2 cup white wine (I used Moscato)
2 cups baby spinach julienned
2 -3 Tbsp. fresh basil, julienned & divided
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
Fresh grated Asiago or reggiano 
Pasta of choice, I used bucatini tonight, linguine would be great also.

In medium skillet, sauté sausage in EVOO for 3 minutes, add onions & garlic, sauté a few more minutes to soften onion. Deglaze with wine & add red bell pepper, mushrooms, tomatoes, S&P. Cook 5-7 minutes. Add spinach & basil, cook for 1 minute to wilt spinach. Spoon over desired pasta, garnish with grated cheese & fresh basil.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

August 2015 Newsletter

August 2015 Newsletter


When I'm an old lady, I'll live with each kid,
And bring so much happiness just as they did.
I want to pay back all the joy they've provided.
Returning each deed! Oh, they'll be so excited!
When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.
I'll write on the walls with reds, whites and blues,
And I'll bounce on the furniture wearing my shoes.
I'll drink from the carton and then leave it out.
I'll stuff all the toilets and oh, how they'll shout!
When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.
When they're on the phone and just out of reach,
I'll get into things like sugar and bleach.
Oh, they'll snap their fingers and then shake their head,
When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.
When they cook dinner and call me to eat,
I'll not eat my green beans or salad or meat,
I'll gag on my okra, spill milk on the table,
And when they get angry I'll run if I'm able!
When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.
I'll sit close to the TV, through channels I'll click,
I'll cross both eyes just to see if they stick.
I'll take off my socks and throw one away,
And play in the mud 'til the end of the day!
When I'm an old lady and live with my kids.
And later in bed, I'll lay back and sigh,
I'll thank God in prayer and then close my eyes.
My kids will look down with a smile slowly creeping,
And say with a groan, "She's so sweet when she's sleeping!"
-by Joanne Bailey Baxter

Creamy Chicken Basil Fettuccine
From Blue Apron

On the Cutting Board
  • 8 Ounces Ground Chicken
  • 8 Ounces Fresh Basil Fettuccine Pasta
  • 3 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Red Onion
  • ¾ Pound Plum Tomatoes 
  • 1 Bunch Basil
  • 2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • ¼ Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons Mascarpone Cheese 

    2Cook the chicken:
    In a large pan, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the ground chicken; season with salt and pepper. Cook, frequently breaking the meat apart with a spoon, 3 to 4 minutes, or until browned and cooked through. Transfer to a bowl, leaving any browned bits (or fond) in the pan.

    3Cook the aromatics:
    Add 2 teaspoons of olive oil to the pan of reserved fond and heat on medium until hot. Add the garlic and onion; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 5 to 7 minutes, or until softened. Add the tomato paste. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until dark red and fragrant.

    4Add the tomatoes & chicken:
    Add the tomatoes, cooked chicken and 1 cup of water to the pan of aromatics; season with salt and pepper. Increase the heat to medium-high. Simmer, stirring occasionally, 12 to 14 minutes, or until the tomatoes have broken down and the sauce has thickened.

    5Cook the pasta:
    Once the tomatoes and chicken have simmered for about 10 minutes, add the pasta to the pot of boiling water, gently stirring to separate. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until just shy of al dente (still slightly firm to the bite). Reserving ½ cup of the pasta cooking water, drain thoroughly.

    6Finish & plate your dish:
    To the pan of tomatoes and chicken, add the cooked pasta, mascarpone cheese, all but a pinch of the Parmesan cheeseand half the reserved pasta cooking water. Reduce the heat to medium. Cook, stirring frequently to thoroughly coat the pasta, 1 to 2 minutes, or until thoroughly combined. (If the sauce seems dry, gradually add the remaining pasta cooking water to achieve your desired consistency.) Stir in all but a pinch of the basil (tearing the leaves just before adding); season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat. Divide the finished pasta between 2 dishes. Garnish with the remaining Parmesan cheese and basil (tearing the leaves just before adding). Enjoy!


    Creamy Mexican Kale Salad

    Healthy Creamy Mexican Kale Salad
    • 4 cups baby or full-grown kale (stalks removed & coarsely chopped), packed
    • 14 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed (I used my cooked beans)
    • 1 cup corn (thaw if using frozen)
    • 2 large bell peppers (any colour), finely chopped
    • 1 + 1/2 large avocado, finely chopped
    • 1 large tomato, finely chopped
    • 1/2 cup red onion, finely chopped
    • 1/2 cup cilantro, finely chopped
    • 1 tbsp jalapeño peppers, seeded & minced
    • Dressing:
    • 1/2 large avocado
    • 1/2 cup warm water
    • 1/2 lime, juice of
    • 1 tsp cumin
    • 3/4 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp black pepper
    1. Add Salad ingredients to a large bowl. In a food processorblender or Magic Bullet, process Dressing ingredients until smooth. Pour over salad, toss and serve. P.S. You could prepare Salad and Dressing in advance and combine before serving. The Dressing does get brown a bit but once mixed with the Salad, it's not noticeable.
    2. Storage Instructions: Refrigerate tossed or separately for up to 24 hours.

    Chicken Tetrazzini Casserole

    From 12 Tomatoes
    Serves 6-8

    • 1 pound whole-wheat linguine (or spaghetti)
    • 1 1/2 pounds cooked chicken breast, shredded (3-4 cups)
    • 2 (8 oz.) packages sliced mushrooms
    • 2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
    • 1 cup 2% milk
    • 1 cup white onion, chopped
    • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
    • 2/3 cup Parmesan cheese, divided
    • 1/2 cup dry white wine
    • 1/3 cup low-fat cream cheese
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
    • toasted almonds, optional, garnish
    1. Preheat oven to 375º F and lightly spray 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
    2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boil and cook pasta until al dente.
    3. In a large pan or skillet, add 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat and swirl pan so that it evenly coats the bottom.
    4. Add mushrooms to pan and sauté until softened. 3-4 minutes. Add onion and garlic and cook until onion is translucent and garlic fragrant.
    5. Pour in white wine, reduce heat and let cook until reduced.
    6. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat and whisk in flour to create a roux.
    7. Once smooth and a dark, golden color, slowly pour in milk and chicken stock, stirring continuously.
    8. Bring sauce to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 7 minutes, or until thickened.
    9. Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan and cream cheese, salt and pepper, and stir well.
    10. Carefully pour the sauce into the mushrooms and onions, and add the pasta and shredded chicken. Toss to combine well.
    11. Pour mixture into baking dish, place in oven and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until cooked through and bubbly.
    12. Remove from oven, let rest 5 minutes, if desired, garnish with toasted almonds and serve hot.
     Mushroom Cream Sauce

    Paula Smith

    1 package stir fry dehydrated mushrooms reconstituted in 2 cups warm chicken broth
    1/4 cup diced red onion
    2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
    1/2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
    1/2 cup white wine ( I used Moscato )
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    1/2 cup shaved Parmesan 

    Sauté onion in olive oil over medium heat. Drain mushrooms, chop & reserve liquid. Add mushrooms & pepper to skillet & continue sautéing for 2-3 minutes. Add wine & cook down slightly, scraping bottom of pan. Add 1 cup of the cooking liquid & cook 2-3 minutes. Reduce heat & stir in heavy cream & shaved Parmesan, heat through.

    Serve over ravioli ( I used lobster ravioli ) polenta or grit cakes. 



    Lemon Honey Panna Cotta

    For the panna cotta:
    ¼ cup fresh lemon juice 
    2 ¼ tsp gelatin 
    1 cup whipping cream 
    ½ cup fine granulated sugar 
    ¼ cup honey 
    Zest of 1 lemon 
    1/8 tsp (pinch) salt 
    2 cups low-fat or no-fat unsweetened yogurt 
    1 tsp pure lemon extract 
    ½ tsp pure vanilla extract 
    ¾ cup apricot jam 
    1 tbsp honey 
    1 tbsp Limoncello 
    Zest of ½ lemon 
    Make the panna cotta:
    Pour the lemon juice into a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over. Let soften for a couple of minutes.
    Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the whipping cream, sugar, honey, lemon zest, and salt. Heat over medium heat, stirring, until the sugar is dissolved and the cream is hot. Remove from the heat and whisk in the softened gelatin; whisk until the gelatin dissolves. Set aside.
    Place the yogurt in a large liquid-measuring cup (a spout will make it easier to pour later). Add the lemon and vanilla extracts and whisk to combine and lighten the yogurt. Gradually, whisk in the hot cream-gelatin mixture. Divide the mixture equally between 12 4-oz bowls, glasses or ramekins. Once cooled, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
    Right before serving or close to the serving time, combine the jam, tablespoon of honey, and Limoncello in a small microwave-safe bowl. Warm the mixture gently, so it’s barely warm to the touch, then put it through a fine-mesh sieve. Stir in the lemon zest. Divide the jam mixture equally between the panna cotta, gently spread the jam. Please, note that the jam should be spreadable but not hot; otherwise, it will melt the panna cotta. Serve right away or refrigerate until needed.