It has been a busy week. We finally got around to hanging pictures and cleaning out the last of our moving boxes. It’s been a little over a year since we moved out here and we just haven’t taken the time to finish all those little decorating touches. I have to let those decisions marinate for a while, see how we actually want to use the living space. So after a long day of decorating decisions, I need a quick, easy dinner. Since ordering a pizza delivery is not an option, this is one of go to’s when I am too tired to cook. Ham and Asparagus Pesto Pasta.
On a weekend, don’t you just want something that takes a few minutes to prepare, can cook for however long (as in the time is flexible), and will serve a good number of people? Well here is one possibility. Tortilla soup cooked in a crockpot. Vegetables, protein, starch, all cooked in the slow cooker. Just add a few fresh toppings like green onions and cilantro if you like, but avocado and cheese are a must along with crushed up tortilla chips.
I see all sorts of sauces these days in the grocery store both jarred and dry mixes. While I am sure they are convenient, I am guessing they have their share of stabilizers and chemicals and a bunch of salt. I prefer to make my own. Pan sauces are incredibly easy, and the secret to thickening them is Beurre Manié.
I am hard pressed to decide that if I had to live off just one food, would it be pasta or tortilla chips and salsa. Well chips and salsa are two things but, you get my point. It is very unfortunate that these foods are not slimming. Why is that? Why couldn’t I crave celery sticks instead.
Anyway, this puttanesca sauce can be considered very healthy. This recipe started out as a marinara sauce, but I am a tinkerer. I just couldn’t help myself. I can better justify pasta with a sauce that is full of good low cal vegetables. Right? So technically now this sauce is a puttanesca.
A few weeks ago we were in Missouri and had dinner at Luigi’s Italian Restaurant. It was an amazing meal. I had their Chicken Florentine and vowed to make something similar. It has taken a few attempts but I have come up with something pretty close. The key is the Sherry I think. I found this lovely medium dry Barbadillo Oloroso. I chose it because I wanted something dry and smokey. This one fits the bill perfectly. It gives the cream sauce a subtle sweet nuttiness.
Here is a quick, healthy one pan meal that comes together in less than 30 minutes. It is so good even my picky husband will eat it. When I made this it was just me but this can easily feed four or more. You just need a skillet where the fish has plenty of room. Cook the fish in batches if needed, or use a large non-stick electric skillet.
The Estancia Valley of Torrance County New Mexico is known for it’s Pinto Beans. Now I have never really been a fan of Pinto Beans until I picked up a bag at the local feed and hardware store. Oh my gosh, so much better than what you buy at the grocery store. I don’t know if it’s that they are fresher, but my guess is as with wine grapes, it’s all about the soil and the water. If you can pick up some local beans via a farmer’s market or produce stand, do it. The best way to cook them is in a slow cooker. Sort, soak, slow cook. The only thing I add is water and a bay leaf. Keep Reading