Thursday, July 18, 2013

From Our Garden Pasta

Happy Hump Day Thursday! We're almost there folks!

I'm so excited how nicely (and oh-my-gosh quickly) our tiny garden is flourishing and sprouting us fresh veggies! I literally shrieked when Alex brought in our first, beautiful, juicy grape tomatoes...

We're gonna be up to our ears with tomatoes!

Cucumber I picked after capturing this pic!
We were a bit ambitious though planting as much as we did in such a teeny-tiny space, so we he is makin' big plans for next summer, especially since last summer was big fat belly-flop in the gardening department, except a couple herbs we managed to keep alive!

This summer, we're growing things out of our yin yangs I'm tellin' ya! He gets it from his mom who is an excellent gardener, whereas I... well let's just say... don't have a likin' for anything garden/yard related, especially since bugs/mosquitos/spiders have a special love of biting me :(

Like I said... a wee-bit too ambitious cause' this is overflowin'!
Thus, I had to break in our first from-our-garden tomatoes with a p-e-r-f-e-c-t summer dish, which also incorporated some leftovers we needed to use (FTW x100!)

The only downside was this dish (in my creative mind) was screaming for long pasta.... I dreamt of it with angel hair, but knew Alex would take a bite and be done with it, but he's "okay" with thicker long noodles like fettuccine, so I met him halfway. 

In case you haven't heard, my husband has a weird (and extremely sad since I LOVE spaghetti & angel hair pasta) dislike for long noodles because a) he can't manage to get enough on his fork and b) he HATES slurping up noodles and finds it utterly gross & rude...

As we were eating this:

Me: "Sorry hunny, this dish just needed some long noodles"

Alex: "It's okay, I'm sorta warming up to them"

Me: "I guess that should've been a 'test' question I asked on one of our first few dates... 'Do you like long noodles?'.... 'Not really'... 'Okay, date's over!'" ;)

I got a kick out of it! HA... Anyhow, I hereby present you with some!...

Tomato, Artichoke and Chick'n Pasta
Serves 3-4
Adapted from Martha Stewart

In the line up!
- 8 ounces fettuccine pasta
- *2 Gardein Chick'n Scallopini cutlets, come frozen
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup vegetable stock
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1 lemon, zested and juiced
- 5-6 large grape or cherry tomatoes (from our garden!), halved
- 4-5 small strips of sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1 can artichoke hearts, chopped
(I had these leftover, so I used more about 1/2 to 3/4 of a can)
- 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 Tablespoon butter or margarine
- 5-6 leaves of basil, chopped thinly
- Salt and pepper

*Gardein products can be found in most major grocery stores (Kroger, Publix, etc.) in the "organic" and "soy" section and specialty stores and have a variety of meatless Chick'n and Beef options, frozen or refrigerated

Now... onto cookin'!

Coach's Orders!

1. Heat extra virgin olive oil over medium heat in a skillet and add Chick'n cutlets.  

2. Cook for about 3-5 minutes on each side or until browned ----->

*Gardein products are typically pre-seasoned, hence the Scallopini name, which has onion& garlic powder, vinegar, paprika & tumeric and dehydrated peppers, garlic and onion as the main rub as its seasoning.  

3. After removing the cooked Chick'n cutlets, add in the same skillet the white wine, vegetable stock and lemon zest and cook until it reduces, about 6-8 minutes (this also cooks out the alcohol of the wine, so this is safe to serve to children!)

4. While the sauce is reducing, boil water in a small pot and cook your fettuccine until al dente for about 9-10 minutes in salted water and then drain. 

5. Once the sauce reduces, add the tomatoes, artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes, lemon juice, red pepper flakes and butter and let the veggies cook and flava's combine!

6. While that's cookin', dice up your chick'n cutlets. 

7. Add the diced chick'n into the pot and stir all together.  

8. Lastly, add cooked and drained pasta and toss to combine until the pasta is completely coated with the sauce and veggies! Then sprinkle with the chopped basil before serving!

I serve this with some simple garlic and cheese bread.  Simply use a regular slice of loaf bread, lightly spread with margarine/butter, sprinkle with some garlic powder and romano or parmesan cheese (we had romano on hand) and toss until the broiler for a 1-2 minutes (but keep an eye on it so it doesn't burn up on ya'!) and remove when browned, crunchy and cheese has melted. So simple, but a perfect light side to complement the pasta!

Time to dive in! :)

Seriously, did this dish not just scream for long noodles?! So perfect... and I loved the mixture of fresh tomatoes with the sun-dried tomatoes that really gave it a fresh and also a sweetness from the sun-dried tomatoes (and basil), and a slight crunch from the artichoke hearts plus some Chick'n for extra flava and protein! 

If you're going to add Chick'n, definitely go with Gardein for this baby, since the Scallopini spices were mild, but added great extra flavor, and the red pepper flakes worked really well to bring out the spice from the Chick'n cutlets!

A fork full of heavenly deliciousness.... GET IN MA BELLY! :)

So fresh. So yummy. SO. VERY. SUMMER!

I don't think I have eaten something this fast in a really long time (whoops), but it was so refreshing and light and the lemon zest and juice came through SO perfectly that I wanted to INHALE the entire plate!

..... and it took under 30 minutes to prepare, which is a major A+ in Alex (and my!) book :)

Perfect one skillet meal (minus the pot for pasta) that doesn't require a lot of extra heat in an already smoldering hot house from this crazy heat wave! Yes, PAH-LEASE!


...Still down and out for now, so I owe ya' Cory!!!

Enjoy my friends... and this is so versatile, switch things it up and make it your own :)


You can find me on:

Twitter: @IndysVeggieFix
Instagram: IndysVeggieFix

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