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Posts Tagged ‘quick and easy’

Chicken and Sausage Orzo

The star of this delicious dish is Orzo which is a small rice-shaped pasta. I would like to point out that Orzo comes in slightly different sizes (from small to smaller) and so they can vary a little in cooking time. Make sure you taste the pasta for doneness and you can always add a small splash of extra chicken stock if the Orzo needs to cook a couple of minutes longer. At first glance this recipe seems labor intensive because it has both sausage and chicken in it, but really it’s not. Making the dish is simply a matter of tossing everything into one cooking pot, so clean-up is a breeze, and I just love the flavor combination that’s going on here within this dish.

Chicken and Sausage Orzo (6 servings)

Ingredients:

2 1/2 spicy italian sausages, casings removed (9.5 oz or 270 g)

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces (1.2 lbs or 540 g)

3 cups chicken stock, plus more if needed (709 ml)

1/2 cup tomato sauce (118 ml)

1 1/2 cups uncooked orzo (280 g)

salt to taste

1/2 cup grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese (25 g)

a big handful parsley, chopped

Directions:

In a large cooking pot, break up sausage and cook over medium-high heat, remove sausage from cooking pot and set aside. Using the grease from the sausage, add raw chicken pieces and cook until no longer pink. Add chicken stock and tomato sauce, lower heat to medium and bring to a simmer. Once liquid is bubbling add uncooked orzo and simmer uncovered for 10-15 minutes or until orzo is tender. Add a little more stock if liquid is cooking off too fast. Add salt to taste. Add cheese and parsley, stir to incorporate and serve. Enjoy!

Source: slightly adapted from Food Wishes

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Nougatmandler

Nougatmandler

Nougat is a sinfully delicious paste that is used quite often in Denmark. Nougat can be made from sugar or honey, toasted almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts and/or pistachios. There are a number of different variations of nougat but the one I am using here is a soft nougat made with hazelnuts.

The melted Nougat is added in three additions and then gently tossed and separated with confectioners sugar.

Nougatmandler is quick and easy to make. Make sure the ceramic bowl you’re using is chilled all the way and be aware that you may have to place the bowl back in the refrigerator for a few minutes, in-between each addition of the warm melted nougat. The final outcome is a crunchy toasted almond  hidden in a soft shell of sweet nougat. Makes for a perfect little snack.

Nougatmandler – Nougat Wrapped Almonds

Ingredients:

100 grams whole almonds with skin on

100 grams nougat

50 grams confectioner sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, place almonds on a baking sheet and toast for 5 minutes. Remove almonds from oven and place in a ceramic bowl in refrigerator until completely cold.

Place confectioner sugar in a small bowl and set aside. Over a waterbath melt the nougat. Bring the cold bowl with almonds out of refrigerator and add 1/3 of melted nougat, stir with a small rubber spatula until nougat starts to set and thicken. Add the second 1/3 of nougat and repeat stirring. Place bowl back into refrigerator between nougat additions if needed. Finally, add the last 1/3 of nougat and repeat stirring. Pour nougat almonds into bowl with confectioners sugar and gently, using your fingers, work the confectioners sugar around each almond. In the end, place almonds into a sieve and gently tap the excess sugar off the almonds. Store almonds a covered container in a cool location. Makes for a wonder snack, enjoy!

Source: Mette Blomsterberg

Soft Nougat

Soft Nougat

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Garlic and Anchovy Farfalle

Garlic and Anchovy Farfalle

Now that the holidays are over and we are settling back into our everyday routines, I think we need something quick and easy on the dinner menu. And this pasta dish is so easy to make, not to mention very delicious. The recipe is from Giada De Laurentiis and I just made some slight little changes. Enjoy!

Fresh Baby Spinach

Fresh Baby Spinach

Garlic and Anchovy Farfalle (serves 4-6)

Ingredients:

1 pound farfalle pasta

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon anchovy paste

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, optional

3 cloves of garlic, minced

5 cups baby spinach leaves (6 ounces)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Directions:

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, add pasta and cook until tender. Drain and reserve 1 cup of pasta water.

Rinse spinach in cold water, drain and set aside. In a large pan heat olive oil over medium heat. Add anchovy paste, red pepper flakes and garlic, cook for until aromatic, 1-2 minutes.  Add spinach and salt, cook until wilted, about 3 minutes.

Add cooked pasta to pan, add 1/2 of the grated cheese to pasta, add some of the reserved pasta water to pan, if needed, to loosen the pasta. Pour pasta into serving dish and top with remaining cheese. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Source: adapted from Giada De Laurentiis

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Raspberry and Granola Parfait

Raspberry and Granola Parfait

Recently I went on a short trip to Fort Myers, Florida and I stayed at the beautiful Sanibel Harbour Marriott Resort. The hotel was gorgeous, the weather was hot and most importantly, the pool was refreshing.

Ahh lounging at the pool.

Ahh lounging at the pool.

The trip was all-inclusive and so of course the food was plenty. I have to say that their breakfast spread was amazing with anything from traditional American breakfast to a more European style breakfast with salmon and various lunch meats to plenty of fresh fruit. My favorite breakfast item was a Parfait which was layered with granola, yogurt and fresh berries. I had the Parfait on the morning of my departure, which was very early, and so I brought it with me to the airport. It made for a great on-the-go breakfast but it could also be a refreshing snack or even a light lunch or dessert. With yogurt, fresh fruit and granola made with honey, you just can’t go wrong.

Granola made with oats, coconut, almonds and honey.

Granola made with oats, coconut, almonds and honey.

Ingredients for Granola:

2 cups old fashioned quaker oats

1/3 cup shredded unsweetened coconut

1/4 cup slivered almonds, chopped

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 cup honey

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cover a 15 x 10 inch baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.

Combine oats, coconut and almonds in a small bowl. Place honey, brown sugar and cinnamon into a cup and stir to combine. Pour honey mixture over the oats and stir until completely moistened.

Spread oats out onto baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, stirring twice. Turn oven off and let the oats sit in the oven for another 10 minutes. Place baking sheet on a cooling rack and allow to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

Ingredients for Parfait:

Vanilla flavored greek yogurt

fresh raspberries, or fruit of your choice

Granola (see recipe above)

To assemble Parfait:

In a tall glass, start with a layer of yogurt, then granola and then fresh berries. Repeat layers to fill glass. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Florida sunset.

Florida sunset.

Source: adapted from Better Homes and Gardens

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