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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Welcome Spring with Asparagus!

Pesto Chicken & Asparagus ala ~DKBB~
(original recipe by Brooke Icenhour, in Apr/May 2012 Taste of Home)
This is the time of year you can find decent fresh asparagus in your local grocery stores. Here's a really yummy, and quick, recipe to showcase that fresh asparagus.
1 lb. cubed boneless chicken breasts
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 c. fresh asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces (note: almost any fresh vegetable could be used)
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 c. whipping cream
½ c. prepared pesto
Cracked pepper
Kosher salt
8 oz. prepared pasta of your choice (or rice, couscous....whatever you desire)
  • In medium skillet, cook the cubed chicken breasts in 1 tbsp. olive oil until they are no longer pink.
  • In large skillet, sauté asparagus in 1 tbsp. oil until crisp-tender.
  • Stir in whipping cream and prepared pesto.
  • Season to taste with cracked pepper and kosher salt.
  • Add cooked chicken cubes and heat thoroughly.
Serve over cooked pasta (or couscous, or rice, or whatever you desire). Enjoy!

    Saturday, March 10, 2012

    Sausage & Polenta

    Sausage and Polenta with Balsamic Vinaigrette ala ~DKBB~
    (original recipe from Better Homes & Gardens)

    1/2 of a 16-oz. tube of refrigerated cooked polenta
    1 Tbsp. olive oil
    4 to 6 uncooked sausage links, each cut into 4 to 6 pieces (original recipe called for sweet Italian sausage, but I use combinations such as 2 to 3 sweet and 2 to 3 hot Italian sausages, or any such mixture of sweet/mild and hot/bold sausages)
    1/2 c. apple juice
    1/4 c. balsamic vinegar
    2 Tbsp. snipped dried tomatoes
    1 8-oz. package mixed salad greens (a spinach mix works great)
    • Preheat oven to 400° F; cut polenta into 1/4-inch slices, then cut each slice in half; brush polenta with oil; arrange in a single layer in a shallow baking pan; bake approximately 15 minutes or until light brown, turning once.
    • Meanwhile, in a large skillet cook sausage over medium heat for 5 minutes, turning to brown evenly; remove sausage from skillet; drain off fat; wipe skillet with paper towels.
    • Return sausage to skillet; add apple juice, balsamic vinegar, and dried tomatoes; bring to boiling; reduce heat; simmer, covered, for 8 to 10 minutes or until sausage is thoroughly cooked (no longer pink).
    • To serve, divide salad greens among four dinner plates; arrange polenta slices and sausage pieces next to greens; drizzle remaining warm balsamic mixture over greens, polenta, and sausage. Makes 4 servings.
    I had purchased some polenta at Trader Joe's in Lincoln when we were there around New Year's. I didn't have a clue what to make with it and came across this recipe on Yahoo Shine. I made it for Chuck's "welcome back from Alaska Study Away trip" last night and it was a huge hit. I wish I would have thought to take a photo before we ate, but we were both pretty hungry and I forgot.