Friday, June 25, 2010

Pasta Primavera

I've actually made this twice now, it's light, healthy and so tasty I wanted more! The second time I made it I added a couple pieces of shrimp.

12 oz pasta, cooked according to package directions
1/2  head of broccoli
10-12 sugar snap peas
1 yellow summer squash, diced small
1 pint of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1/2 bell pepper (I used green, but red or yellow would add more color.)
8-10 button mushrooms
1 clove of garlic finely minced
1/2 cup pine nuts
3 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan grated as a garnish
more olive oil to garnish

Place all cut vegetables on a large sheet pan, excluding the sugar snap peas. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast at 450 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until the vegetables start to brown. About 4 minutes before pasta is finished add the sugar snap peas to the boiling water. Drain pasta and peas and place them in a large serving bowl. When vegetables are finished, add them to the pasta and mix well. Garnish with toasted pine nuts, Parmesan cheese and extra olive oil if desired. Serve hot.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Garlic Chicken and Pesto

The other day I was at the pazar and smelled the basil wafted around as Iwas walking past the green grocers.    I immediately knew we were destined to have pesto for dinner that night, which was a nice change.  I am getting married this summer so between doing wedding planning and working, “cooking” dinner has consisted of asking my honey which kind of takeout he would like that night.  I do usually do make fresh salad, though.  The pesto had to be altered as pine nuts are VERY expensive here and  I am allergic to walnuts—the normal substitute.  Parmesan cheese is also VERY expensive.  It is about $30 a pound so I used a hard aged cheddar which is parmesan-esque.


Garlic Chicken and Pesto


3 cups of fresh basil leaves,
1/2 cup grated aged cheddar cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts or almonds
3 medium sized garlic cloves,
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Thrown the basil and the garlic in the food processor and pulse until everything has been ground up.  Add the nuts and pulse a few times, then the cheese, then finally the olive oil.  I usually add less oil and have more of a pasty pesto to save on calories.  Mix in with hot pasta---serve with garlic chicken.

Garlic Chicken

4 cloves of garlic
4 chicken breasts
1/2 cup of yogurt or Kefir

Press the garlic cloves in a garlic press or mince finely.  Mix the kefir or yogurt with the garlic and enough water to make the consistently soupy but still thick enough to coat the chicken.  Marinate the  chicken for at least an hour this way ( I like to do it overnight.) I find marinating chicken in yogurt or kefir makes the chicken really juicy and tender.

In a non stick pan heat up a little olive oil and sauté the chicken until it is done.  I like to cut the chicken breasts in half so they are not so thick and cook more quickly--serve with pesto pasta!




Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Sauteed Mushroom and Zucchini

I'm getting quite a backlog of recipes lately! This spring weather and now summer has kept me busy. Here's a tasty quick side dish.

Sauteed Mushroom and Zucchini

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp dried italian spice blend
salt and pepper
drizzle of honey
8 large chopped mushrooms
1 chopped zucchini

Mix the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, spices and honey in a bowl. Add vegetables and coat really well. Let marinade for up to an hour. Drain off marinade from vegetables and add them to a very hot skillet. Saute on high heat until edges start to crisp and brown.
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