Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Southwestern Chicken and Parmesan Basil Frites

Southwestern Chicken adapted from: Cheap, Healthy, Good
Parmesan Basil Frites adapted from: Love & Olive Oil

This southwestern chicken recipe is a fun twist to your average chicken dish. Black beans, corn, and salsa are any easy combo with chicken tenderloin. Wrapping it all up in a packet of foil really enhances the taste. And you know we love red (new) potatoes, so for a side to our chicken we tried out these parmesan basil french fries that you bake in the oven. They were simple and so good, with some of our favorite flavors - garlic and basil.

SW Chicken
  • 3 12x18-inch rectangles aluminum foil
  • 6 boneless skinless chicken tenderloins
  • ¾ cup canned black beans, draine
  • ¾ cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • ¾ cup chunky salsa

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Salt and pepper tenderloins. Place two tenderloins in the middle of each sheet of tin foil. Top each with 1/4 cup beans, 1/4 cup corn, and 1/4 cup salsa.

Seal the foil packets. Bring the long ends together and double fold them. Then double fold sides. Don’t seal too tight, leaving space for them to steam while baking.

Bake for 35 minutes. Remove from oven and allow them to cool for a couple of minutes. Remove from foil and serve.

Baked Parmesan Basil Frites
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tsps. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 3 medium red potatoes

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Slice potatoes into 1/4-inch fries. In a large bowl, combine parmesan, olive oil, basil, and garlic powder. Add fries to the bowl and toss to coat.

Coat a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Spread fries evenly on a single level. Bake for 15 minutes, flip, and bake for another 20 minutes, or until desired crispiness.

Yield: 3 servings

Monday, April 18, 2011

Asparagus and Prosciutto Pasta

Adapted from Whole Foods

With the Farmer's Market now open, we have many local and fresh vegetables to cook with this week. We wanted to use the asparagus in a pasta, and this great recipe also calls for prosciutto, which is a nice change from our standard of chicken in pasta. If you like both asparagus and prosciutto, you will for sure like this tasty dish. And if you're like some of our friends and don't think you like these items, give them a try!

  • 2 cups farfalle pasta
  • 1/2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 oz. or three thin slices of prosciutto, cut into strips
  • 1 bunch of asparagus, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/8 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


Cook pasta according to package directions. While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onions and prosciutto and cook for approx. 5 minutes or until onions are light brown and tender. Add asparagus and cook for another 5 minutes, spirring frequently. Add tomatoes, cover, and cook for 3 more minutes. Uncover, add wine, and stir until liquid evaporates. Toss with pasta and then with Parmesan.

Yield: 2 servings

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Tomatoes, Broccoli, and Chickpea Pasta

We've been planning this meal for a couple of weeks, and with the weekend we finally got a chance to cook it. But even tonight there was a little delay. Late this afternoon there was a tornado watch for our county, so we flipped on the news to watch the forecast for the incoming storm. When the weatherman said the tornado was headed to hit west Greenville on its course through eastern NC, we darted to the clubhouse and took shelter in the gym bathroom with 4 other friends, a neighbor, and his 2 dogs. After waiting it out there until the coast was clear, it was already late into the night, but we were so ready for this meal! It's a simple recipe and made for a great dinner, especially accompanied by breathtaking heat lightning and a full moon.

  • 1 14.5 oz. can chickpeas, drained
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 12-oz. bag steamable broccoli
  • 2 1/2 cups pasta shells
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • Ground black pepper
  • Grated parmesan, optional

Fill a medium-size bowl with cold water and a few ice cubes. Microwave a steamable bag of broccoli for about one minute under the recommended time, then drop broccoli into bowl of ice water. After a few minutes, drain and set broccoli aside.

In a small bowl, stir chickpeas with 1/2 tbsp. olive oil. Set aside.

Cook pasta according to package directions.

While pasta is cooking, heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft, for 6-7 minutes. Add garlic and chickpeas and cook until heated, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes and broccoli. Salt and pepper to taste. Once warm, add pasta to the skillet and mix well. Once heated through, serve and enjoy! Sprinkle parmesan on top if desired.

Yield: 4 servings

View from our deck as we watched the far away storm:

Friday, April 8, 2011

Tilapia with Citrus Salsa and Sauteed Vegetable Medley

Tilapia recipe adapted from Clean Eating

We are very much enjoying the warm, spring weather. There's nothing quite like eating a colorful meal with fresh fruit and vegetables outside on our porch. We look forward to many more evenings like this one when summer comes.


For the tilapia:
  • 2, 4 oz. tilapia fillets
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil

For the salsa:

  • 1 orange, peeled with membrane removed
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1/3 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 green onion
  • 1/2 lime, for juice
  • salt and pepper, to taste

For the vegetable medley:

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 2 zucchini, sliced
  • 1 cup okra
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved


In a bowl, combine salsa ingredients and mix gently. In a medium skillet, heat 1 tbsp. of olive oil over medium-high heat until hot. Then reduce heat to medium-low and saute tilapia for 3-5 minutes or until browned and cooked through.

While tilapia is cooking, heat another tbsp. of olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Once hot, add onion and garlic and saute until onion is soft. Then add zucchini and okra and continue to saute to desired tenderness. Lastly, add tomatoes and saute for another minute or two.

Once cooked, remove tilapia from heat and top with salsa. Serve the sauteed vegetable medley on the side.

Yield: 2 servings

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Arroz con Pollo

Adapted from: Skinny Taste

One of our go-to places to eat out with our friends is a local Mexican restaurant we refer to as "Mi CabaƱa By the Hospital." Whether it's when meeting each other for the first time or for margaritas on a week night after a big test, Lauren and I always resort back to our favorite dish on the menu, arroz con pollo.

  • 2 large skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cube chicken bouillon
  • 1 packet sazon (if you're clueless like us, it'll look like this at the store and will probably be found in the ethnic aisle)
  • 4 oz. (1/2 small can) tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 1 cup light beer
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cups rice
  • 1 bag frozen mixed veggies
  • 2 tbsp pimientos
  • Salt, to taste

Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season chicken with salt and saute until browned, about 5 minutes on each side. Transfer chicken to large saucepan and set aside.

Heat remaining tbsp oil in skillet, then add onion, pepper, garlic, and cilantro. Saute on medium heat and stir for 5 minutes. Transfer contents of skillet to saucepan with chicken. Pour in water, beer, tomato sauce, chicken bouillon, salt, chicken, and sazon. Cook for 10 minutes on medium heat.

Add frozen mixed vegetables, pimientos with a little of the juice from the jar, and rice to saucepan. Stir and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally. Once most of the water has evaporated, cover and reduce heat to low.

Yield: 6-7 servings

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Greek Pizza

Adapted from Great Pizza Recipes

We wish there was a Trader Joe's closer to us because we love their pizza dough (and everything else too!). The last time we were there we bought extra dough and froze it, not knowing how it would fare. Turns out you can freeze the dough, move it into the refrigerator the day before you plan to use it, and it defrosts to the fresh consistency and taste.


  • 16 oz. pizza dough
  • 2 1/2 tbsp. pesto sauce
  • 1/2 cup spinach leaves
  • 1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp. parmesan
  • 1/8 cup feta
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray cookie sheet with cooking spray. Spread pizza dough evenly on cookie sheet. Spread pesto on dough and top evenly with sun dried tomatoes and spinach. Then cover with cheeses. Bake for approx. 10 minutes.

Additional toppings could also include olives and artichoke hearts if they suit your taste buds. And a little balsamic vinegar drizzled on top after the pizza has cooked makes it even better!

Yield: 3 servings