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  1. Tuesday, September 28

    Creamy Pesto Fettuccine with Mushrooms & Tomatoes

    Last week when I made the Pesto Tortellini Soup I had on my menu, I ended up with 7 ounces minus 1/4 cup of pesto left over. The next night we had Easy Peasy Bean Tacos, which resulted in a half a container of leftover grape tomatoes. The next night (are you liking this painful play-by-play?) I swung by the store on the way home from a playdate and saw a $2 package of fresh fettuccine that inspired me. I grabbed a half pint of cream, a package of sliced mushrooms and went home to throw dinner together as quickly as possible.

    The result was a simple and fast recipe that was molto delicioso. The best part? My girls ate ALL of their dinner and then some. And I have another meatless recipe to add to the arsenal.

    Buon appetito!

    Creamy Pesto Fettuccine with Mushrooms & Tomatoes
     
    Quick, easy, and super yummy!
    Author:
    Recipe type: Main Dishes, Pasta
    Ingredients
    • 9 oz. fresh fettuccine (or whatever past you have on hand)
    • 8 oz. fresh mushrooms, sliced
    • Couple handfuls of cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
    • 2-4 garlic cloves, minced or smashed through a garlic press
    • ½ pint cream
    • Prepared pesto (I used 7 ounces MINUS ¼ cup since the pesto was leftover from the soup recipe, but I think a 7-ounce package will work just fine…no need to subtract out that ¼ cup…although you could make the Pesto Tortellini Soup the same week to coordinate!)
    • 2 handfuls fresh grated parmesan cheese, plus some for garnish
    • ½ to 1 teaspoon salt (to taste)
    • Olive oil for sautéing
    Instructions
    1. Prepare pasta according to package directions. Drain and drizzle with a bit of butter or olive oil to prevent sticking.
    2. While waiting for water to boil for the pasta, start working on the other stuff. Sauté the mushrooms in a tablespoon or two of olive oil until softened. Add garlic and tomatoes and sauté a few minutes more. Add cream, pesto sauce and salt; simmer to reduce until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Add parmesan cheese and stir until melted.
    3. Pour sauce over pasta and serve, sprinkled with fresh grated parmesan cheese and fresh chopped basil if you have it.
    4. A few things I think would be good to add, but I haven’t actually tried yet: a shallot sautéed with the mushrooms, spinach, or white beans.

     


  2. Friday, August 27

    Adobo Chicken…and some darn good tortillas

    I am finally writing about the spice from this week’s menu post. As some of you guessed, it is annatto seed, also called achiote seed. And I made adobo chicken with it. And it was GOOD.

    Nate came home one day saying how good the adobo chicken at work is, so I started searching for recipes. Oh my, there are so many recipes and they are all so different from one another…so I just picked one that sounded good and went for it. And the result was delicious! Different than what Nate had at work, but delicious just the same!

    Before I get to the recipe, I have to talk about the tortillas we used with our chicken. Tortilla Land sent me some of their uncooked corn tortillas to try out. I’m a tough corn tortilla critic and, I have to say, I’m so glad Tortilla Land sent me their corn tortillas. They are wonderful! They are not dry at all and don’t fall apart or break, which is what you normally get with store bought corn tortillas. I saw Tortilla Land at Costco just this week, so keep an eye out next time you go!

    Okay, back to annatto seed and adobo chicken. I used a recipe from About.com, but I’ve changed it up and written it out for you below. I know the recipe looks long, but honestly, this was an easy recipe, so don’t be scared!

    The sweet but spicy sauce is oh so yummy, and grilled chicken is always the best. We served the chicken with tortillas, tomatoes and avocado. You could serve over rice if you like (which I think is how it’s generally served), or just eat straight up!

    Adobo Chicken...and some darn good tortillas
     
    Sweet and Spicy!
    Author:
    Recipe type: Main Dishes
    Ingredients
    • 4 chicken breasts (I actually used 3 drumsticks and 3 boneless thighs b/c that’s what I had on hand!)
    • Salt (pref. kosher)
    • Rub:
    • ½ Tbsp. annatto (achiote) seeds
    • 1 Tbsp. orange juice
    • 4 Tbsp. white vinegar
    • 1 tsp. cayenne
    • 1 tsp. black pepper
    • 4 garlic cloves
    • Sauce:
    • ⅓ of the rub above
    • 1 cup orange juice
    • 2 Tbsp. vegetable or canola oil
    • 1 tsp. basil
    • 1 tsp. cinnamon
    • ½ tsp. salt
    • a splash or two of white vinegar
    • a few shakes of cayenne pepper
    • a few shakes of black pepper
    • about 1 tsp cornstarch, whisked with some cool water
    Instructions
    1. Cover annatto seeds with boiling water. Cover and let sit overnight.
    2. Drain seeds. Place seeds along with the rest of the “Rub” ingredients in a food processor. Grind until you have a coarse paste, without too many large pieces of seed left.
    3. Place chicken in a casserole dish and sprinkle all over with kosher salt (or regular salt if that’s what you have). Cover pieces with about two-thirds of the achiote rub. (Note on the picture below: I just sprinkled salt and pepper over a few extra pieces of chicken for my girls, so they would be less spicy – they still ate the sauce, but the chicken had less heat for their younger palettes.) Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerator for a few hours.
    4. Preheat grill. Grill chicken about 10 minutes on each side over a medium flame or until done. (Click here with even better directions for grilling chicken pieces – this follows closely to what Nate did over a charcoal grill, he’s smart like that.)
    5. To make the sauce, mix all the sauce ingredients (except the cornstarch) and bring to a boil, then simmer for 5-10 minutes. Add the cornstarch mixture during the simmer.
    6. Pour sauce over grilled chicken and enjoy!

     

     

    By the way, if anyone out there DOES have an adobo chicken recipe they love, please share! Would love to try it out!


  3. Friday, April 3

    Aaron and Lindsay’s Chicken Tortilla Soup Extravaganza

    Remember Lindsay?  I think it’s about time I start sharing some of her recipes with you!

    chicken tortilla soup | thisweekfordinner.com

    Today it’s Aaron and Lindsay’s Chicken Tortilla Soup Extravaganza! I’m going to start adding the word “Extravaganza” to the end of all my recipes.  It’s just so festive! (Aaron is Lindsay’s husband, by the way…who is one of the maybe five male commenters on this site.  Thanks, Aaron!)

    Lindsay actually fries up her own tortilla strips for the soup. She is WAY more gourmet than I am.

    Lindsay has the most beautiful spices.  She puts them all in matching containers.  And how cute is her bowl of salt?  I always feel like I’m in the audience of a cooking show at her house.

    I no longer live next door to Lindsay.  I so miss our afternoons of her cooking and me photographing.  Those were the days… 🙂

    And now, for the recipe!

    Aaron and Lindsay’s Chicken Tortilla Soup Extravaganza
     
    A little spicy and a lot delicious!
    Author:
    Recipe type: Main Dishes, Soup
    Cuisine: Mexican
    Ingredients
    • 1 onion, finely chopped
    • olive oil
    • 2 green onions, chopped
    • 4 cloves garlic, minced
    • 8 cups chicken broth
    • 2-3 tomatoes, chopped
    • ½ bag frozen corn
    • 1 large chicken breast
    • 1 can black beans, drained & rinsed
    • 1 lime (one extra for garnish)
    • 1 handful cilantro, chopped
    • 4-5 corn tortillas, cut into strips
    • 1 avocado, diced
    • cayenne pepper
    • chili powder
    • cumin
    • salt and pepper
    • cheddar or jack cheese, shredded
    • sour cream
    Instructions
    1. Sautee onion in olive oil until soft, then add garlic, green onions, cayenne, chili powder, and cumin. Sautee until fragrant (a minute or two). Add chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer. Add tomatoes, corn, black beans.
    2. Grill up chicken spiced with cayenne, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. (You can also pan-fry it, but it won’t add the smokiness that the bbq does). Cut up or shred chicken and add it to the soup. Try the soup and add more seasonings according to taste, if needed. Add lime juice and cilantro.
    3. In large fry pan over medium-high heat, crisp up tortilla strips. Add salt. You may do this with oil or cooking spray. (For a shortcut, use tortilla chips instead).
    4. Serve soup garnished with avocado, cheese, sour cream, tortilla strips, fresh cilantro, and a lime wedge.