Saturday, August 29, 2015

Green Beans with Sausage

Green Beans & Sausage

1 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed and rinsed
6 oz. (2 lengths) Andouille Cajun sausage, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ med. yellow onion, diced
1-2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 ½ tsp. dried oregano
Salt and pepper
½ of 14.5 oz can of reduced sodium chicken broth
½ c. unsalted slivered almonds
Zest of 1 lemon

Heat olive oil in skillet. Add diced sausage and cook, stirring occasionally for about 6-7 minutes. Before fully cooked, add onion. Stir and cook until onions are tender. Add garlic, salt and pepper. Stir and cook for just a couples minutes (don’t let garlic brown).

Add green beans to sausage mixture and toss together. Add oregano, salt and pepper.
Pour in chicken broth over green beans. Bring to boil. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook until green beans are tender.

Sprinkle slivered almonds and lemon zest.

Serve hot.

Chicken Penne Casserole

Pasta is definitely a family favorite in my house. This recipe with its subtle blend of herbs combined with juicy chicken and mini penne all wrapped in a creamy Alfredo sauce will become your go-to dinnertime meal even on the busiest of nights.

Chicken Penne Casserole
3 chicken breasts, diced
2 c. mini penne (measure uncooked)
1 1/2 c. heavy cream
2 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 c. (1/2 stick) butter + 1 Tbsp.
2 Tbsp. fresh Italian parsley, chopped
1 c. broccoli, chopped
3/4 c. French fried onions
Olive oil
Salt-free garlic and herb seasoning blend

Preheat oven to 350º.

In large pot, bring 4-5 cups of water to a boil (add a little salt to the water) and add pasta. Cook according to package directions.

Meanwhile, heat about 1 Tbsp of olive oil and 1 Tbsp of butter in a deep skillet over medium heat. When butter is melted add diced chicken. Sprinkle with good amount of garlic and herb seasoning blend. Stir and cook. Once chicken is cooked through, remove chicken and drippings from pan.

In same skillet, melt 1/4 c. butter over medium-low heat. Add minced garlic and whisk in heavy cream. Whisk and cook for about a minute, then add Parmesan cheese reserving a little for the top. Stir  until melted. Add a dash or two of garlic and herb seasoning blend. Add fresh Italian parsley. Cook and stir until cheese is melted and flavors combine.

Drain pasta and add it to the sauce mixture. Add the chicken. Stir and mix well.

Pour into a baking dish (I used a lasagna pan). Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese. Top with French fried onions and chopped broccoli. Bake for 30 minutes. Serve with crusty French bread.

Say Hello to Fall with Warm Banapple Bread

If you’re having a difficult time letting go of summer and embracing fall, this recipe will definitely propel you straight into the new season. This is a simple banana bread recipe made with the addition of apple, cinnamon and a hint of allspice. This wonderful treat embraces all the flavors of fall and fills the kitchen with a glorious aroma.

Banapple Bread
3 medium-sized ripe bananas, mashed
1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and diced small
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 2/3 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. allspice
1-2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. vanilla
5 Tbsp. butter, softened
1/4 cup water
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 350º. Grease bottom and sides of loaf pan. Mix sugar and softened butter. Stir in eggs and vanilla until well blended.

Meanwhile, in medium bowl, mash bananas and add diced apples. Squeeze with fresh lemon juice and sprinkle with cinnamon and allspice. Stir to coat. Combine banana and apple mixture with sugar and egg mixture and mix well.

In separate bowl, combine flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Add to wet ingredients. Add water. Mix well scraping down the sides of the bowl. Fold in chopped nuts.

Pour mixture into prepared loaf pan and bake approximately 1 hour and 10-15 minutes. (Note: you may have to let it go a little longer depending on the size of your pan).