Monday, May 9, 2011

Sun Dried Tomato Chicken Pasta

Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette
4 oz. sun dried tomatoes in Italian herbed oil
3/4 c. organic extra virgin olive oil
1/2 c. balsamic vinegar
1 TBS fresh basil, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3 green onions, chopped

Blend all ingredients in food processor or blender until creamy.

1.25 boneless skinless chicken breasts

2 TBS oil from sun dried tomatoes

1/4 c. red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced

3/4 c. chicken broth, warmed
4 oz. sun dried tomatoes, julienned
2 c. fresh baby spinach, sliced into 1/4 inch strips
1/2 c. fresh basil leaves, sliced into 1/8 inch strips

1 c. milk

3/4 c. shredded Italian 5 cheese blend

1 lb. farfelle (bow tie) or penne pasta, cooked al dente according to package

Rinse chicken breasts; place in medium non-metal bowl. Pour Vinaigrette over, turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap, place in refrigerator & allow to marinate at least 2 hours, up to 8.

Remove chicken from marinade (discard) & dice into bite sized pieces.

Heat oil from sun dried tomatoes in 4 qt Dutch Oven or large saucepan over medium high heat. Add chicken & cook until no longer pink. Stir in red onion & garlic & cook 3 minutes or until onion starts to soften.

Pour in warmed chicken broth & bring just to simmer. Add sun dried tomatoes & cook 3 minutes more. Add spinach & fresh basil & cook, stirring gently, until spinach begins to wilt. Pour in milk, stirring well to incorporate. Bring just to a simmer; quickly stir in shredded cheese blend until melted. Simmer gently until sauce thickens slightly, stirring often.

Add half of cooked pasta to sauce, stirring well to blend. Continue adding pasta until desired proportions are reached.

Serve immediately.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Oven Roasted Asparagus

1 bunch fresh asparagus, thin stalks, about 1 lb.
2-3 TBS olive oil
coarse ground sea salt, to taste
fresh ground tri-color blend peppercorns, to taste
1 large clove garlic, minced

Place oven rack on highest position in oven; preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet with foil.

Thoroughly wash asparagus; cut off bottom 2 inches of stalks. Spread on paper towels & pat completely dry.

Spread the asparagus in a single layer on prepared sheet. Brush olive oil evenly over the asparagus. Sprinkle with sea salt & pepper; scatter minced garlic on top.

Place baking sheet on high rack; roast the asparagus for about 12-15 minutes until lightly brown & tender. Remove to serving plate; serve immediately.