"It's the company, not the cooking, that makes the meal!" ~Perilee 
(Hattie Big Sky by Kirby Larson)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Chicken and Citrus Salad

The year I had my twins I remember falling in love with this salad. I love baby spinach and strawberry salads. Its a salad packed with vitamins A and C. As Spring approaches and I get my spring recipes out I am feeling like posting them even though I don't have a picture of them at the moment! Looking at all these fresh recipes is bringing the touch of sunshine I need on this gray and stormy day.

Chicken and Citrus Salad
4 cups each: Baby Spinach and Mixed Salad Greens
2 Cups sliced Strawberries
1 can (15 oz) Mandarin Oranges segments, drained
8 oz sugar snap peas, halved
1 pkg. (6 oz) Oven Roasted Chicken Breast cut in to strips
1/2 cup Pecans, Toasted
1/2 cup Raspberry Vinaigrette

Toss all ingredients in large bowl. Spoon onto plates.

Makes 4 servings.

Creamy Lemon Asparagus Risotto

So I did something totally crazy and ordered a case of asparagus to split with my sister-in-law. Not the brightest idea. While we love asparagus at our house. To much of a good thing might ruin it. So not wanting this to happen I have freely shared my asparagus with family and friends. My Neighbors are next on the list! If I had a pressure cooker to can this wonderfully young and tasty asparagus my purchase would have been a light more brilliant! I may still try to freeze a couple of pounds and see how it turns out!

So along with my asparagus I have many fresh herbs and other fresh produce that I need to create a menu around. Strangely it motivates me. Sometimes we use our tried and true recipe and other times I try something new. This basket is proving to be both. So today I share one that we have tried before.

I got this recipe years ago (1995 to be exact) from the Food and Family magazine that Kraft foods put out. This is a great springtime dish. It's easy, creamy, and it taste good. We don't usually use Minute Rice so I have to buy it for this recipe. I prefer regular rice to the minute variety, but I am not going to complain when a recipe turns out great and its fast!

(Picture to be posted later.... maybe :-D)
Creamy Lemon Asparagus Risotto
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cups Minute White Rice, uncooked
1/2 lb. asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cups chicken broth
2 Tablespoons cream cheese spread
Grated pee; and juice of one lemon

Heat oil in large skillet on medium heat. Add onion; cook and stir 2 minutes or until tender
Stir in rice, asparagus, and broth. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; simmer 5 minutes.
Add cream cheese spread, peel and juice; stir until well blended.

Makes 6 Servings

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Basic Dough for Pizza, Breadsticks, and More!

I got this recipe from Emily S. recipe blog. We had homemade pizza last night. My family liked it. I loved the single rise aspect of this dough. It was perfect for us last night. I mixed it together and let it rise while we were at wrestling practice. When we came home we tossed the pizza together and dinner was served. One thing I need to remember for next is that I want to split the dough into 2 pizza's or pizza and a pan of bread sticks. I used it all in a large jelly-roll pan and the crust was nice and thick. I loved it that way but if I needed to stretch it out and make more I definitely think it could have been stretched. We will be making this again, but it hasn't replaced our all time favorite pizza dough, which takes 2 hours to produce. Great recipe! Thanks Emily for sharing.

Basic Dough-Pizza/Pita/Pretzel/Bread sticks

2 C. Warm Water
1 1/2 Tbsp. Yeast
2 Tbsp Sugar
2 tsp. salt
4-5 cups flour

Mix together until you have a sticky dough that pulls away from the side of the bowl. Let rise 1 hr. (this is the only rise that you have to do with this recipe)

Pitas: Roll small balls of dough into flat circles (about 8 inches), place in preheated oven (about 450) on a hot cookie sheet or baking stone. Bake for 3-5 min, they should puff up in the center, if they don't they work great to fold over.

Pizza: Roll out and top with your favorite pizza toppings, bake 20-25 min at 400 degrees or until bottom is crisp.

Pretzels: Roll into long, thin ropes and fold over to make pretzel shape. Dip in water mixture that is about 1 cup water, 2 tsp baking soda , sprinkle with salt and bake at 400 for about 10 min. Brush with butter and add more coarse salt if desired.

Bread sticks: Roll into 2 rectangles. Place on cookie sheet, brush with butter, garlic, salt, Parmesan cheese, and anything else you want. Cut in to strips. Bake at 400 for 20 or so min. Brush generously with melted butter again after removing from oven. Serve warm. :)