Chipotle Cheddar Chicken and Broccoli Pasta

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Chipotle Cheddar Chicken and Broccoli Pasta
with recipe inspiration from Thyme for Cocktails

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1-1/4 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 lb broccoli florets
  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 chipotle peppers, minced
  • 1 tablespoon adobo sauce
  • 1/2 tablespoon oregano
  • 1/2 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup water
  • 8 oz medium shells
  • 1/4 cup half and half
  • 1 cup (4 oz.) shredded cheddar cheese

Method

Heat oil in a large deep skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Reduce heat to medium. Add onion, sauté 2-3 minutes. Mix in garlic, chipotle peppers, adobe sauce, oregano, salt, and pepper. Cook for another minute.

Stir in stock and pasta, bring to a boil and simmer 7-8 minutes. Add broccoli and water, then cover and simmer for another 3-4 minutes, until broccoli is tender. Uncover, reduce heat to low. Mix in half and half and cheese, and stir until melted. Stir in reserved chicken. Serve.

NOTES

Sooooo proud of this one. I came up with the meal idea on my own (with inspiration from a tumblr friend who posted about the evol brand chipotle mac and cheese) and, with very few reference points to start from on the internet, made a one-pot wonder that combined this gal’s Chipotle Chicken Mac and Cheese Skillet flavors with the methods and ratios of my tried and true Skillet Chicken and Broccoli Pasta.

The result is SPECTACULAR. Saucy, spicy, cheesy goodness, without at all being too heavy. Another recipe I will be making for life.

 

Tuna Noodle Skillet

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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large stalk celery, finely chopped
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 ounces white or brown mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups stock or water
  • 12-ounce package uncooked medium egg noodles
  • 4 (6 ounce) cans tuna, drained and flaked
  • 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Method 

Melt butter in large deep skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, celery, carrot, and mushrooms and season with salt, thyme, and pepper. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes, until the vegetables are tender and the mushrooms release their water and are brown.

Sprinkle the flour over everything, then add the milk and stock. Stir to combine. Add the noodles. Adjust the heat to a moderate simmer and cook, stirring often, until the noodles are tender and the liquid almost absorbed, about 8 minutes.

Reduce heat to low; add in the tuna, peas, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.

NOTES

Another delicious, easy, healthier Helper at home meal (see also: Cheeseburger Macaroni, Skillet Chili Mac, and One Pot Ground Beef Stroganoff). It’s funny: Steve and I lived off those when we were first married (er, longer than that) and honestly, I never thought one day I would be the cook I turned out to be nor would it have ever occurred to me at the time to try making those boxed meals from scratch. I’m glad times have changed, to say the least.

One Pot Ground Beef Stroganoff

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One Pot Ground Beef Stroganoff

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 medium sweet onion, diced
  • 8 oz crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 cups low sodium beef or chicken broth
  • 12 oz. egg noodles
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley

Method

Heat large deep skillet over medium heat. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking up the beef with a spoon as it cooks, until it is browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Remove the beef to a bowl, leaving the fat in the pan. Add the onion, mushrooms, and salt and cook until the mushrooms are tender and the onion is translucent, 4-5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, 30-60 seconds. Sprinkle the paprika, thyme, and pepper over the top and stir to combine.

Pour in the broth and scrape up any bits stuck to the pan. Add the pasta. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and continue to cook, stirring often, until the pasta is al dente, about 10 minutes. Return the reserved ground beef to the pan and stir through until warm, about a minute. Remove from heat and stir in sour cream and parsley. Serve immediately.

NOTES

I was going to say that this is a great weeknight alternative to traditional beef stroganoff, but it really doesn’t need that kind of justification. It’s a fantastic dish all on its own. Pictures don’t even do it justice, like, at all. SO GOOD. I’ve had this on my “to-do” list forever and I can’t believe it took me so long to get to it. It is so right up my alley – simple, one-pot, DELICIOUS. Permanent rotation.

Pad See Ew

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Pad See Ew

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 8 oz sliced pork or chicken
  • 8 oz wide dry rice noodles, soaked for 40 minutes in cold water until soft and white, drained and rinsed
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • Stir fry sauce (see below)
  • 12 oz Chinese broccoli, stems sliced thinly on a diagonal, leafy ends chopped

Stir fry sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon light (or “white”) soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon palm sugar
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 medium clove of garlic, minced or grated

Method

Heat oil over very high heat, add meat, stir until no longer pink, but not cooked through. Add noodles, toss well, and let the mixture sit for 2-3 minutes to char.

Move noodles and meat to one side of the pan. Add eggs, then flip noodles and meat over them. Let eggs sit for one minute, then stir and toss until cooked through and well-distributed. Add stir fry sauce and toss through. Add broccoli and stir fry until broccoli is tender. Serve.

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NOTES

This dish. This dish has given me more trouble than any besides chicken vindaloo in trying to create an authentic, blog-worthy representation at home. Six tries later, I think I finally succeeded – meaning, even if it’s not as awesome as my beloved Thai Nakorn‘s version, it’s darn well close enough!

Bun Thit Nuong (Vietnamese Grilled Pork with Vermicelli)

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Bun Thit Nuong (Vietnamese Grilled Pork with Vermicelli)
slightly adapted from Hungry Huy

Ingredients

  • 1.5 pounds pork shoulder
  • 1 10-oz. package rice vermicelli (small thickness), cooked using package directions

Marinade

  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon thick soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon neutral cooking oil

Vegetables

  • Mint (rau thơm), chopped or minced
  • Vietnamese perilla (tiá tô), chopped or minced
  • Vietnamese balm (kinh giới), chopped or minced
  • Cucumbers, sliced or julienned
  • Carrots, julienned

 Garnish

  • Pickled radish
  • Scallions
  • Crushed peanuts

Sauce

Method

Slice the uncooked pork thinly, about 1/8-1/4″. It helps to slightly freeze it.

Mince garlic and shallots. Mix in a bowl with sugar, fish sauce, thick soy sauce, pepper, and oil until sugar dissolves. Marinate the meat in the mixture for at least 1 hour, or overnight for better results.

Bake the pork at 375F for 10-15 minutes or until about 80% cooked. Finish cooking by broiling in the oven until a nice golden brown color develops, flipping the pieces midway.

Assemble your bowl with veggies, noodles, and garnish. Mix the whole bowl up and pour the nuoc cham on top or sauce individual bites, as you prefer.

NOTES

Bun Thit Nuong has been my favorite Vietnamese dish since I first laid my hands on it in SoCal around 2007. And I can’t tell you how many friends of mine have heard my mini-diatribe re. eating at a Vietnamese spot: “forget the pho, order the bun!”

But ever since coming back to Texas in 2011, I have gone without. Why? Well, I rarely eat out since I moved back here. And for some reason, it never occurred to me to make it myself. Which… for me? That is WEIRD. WHY? Why would I not have thought to make it myself?? It took a longtime acquaintance of Vietnamese background to nudge me to do it and once I did, I kind of face palmed myself for waiting so long. From the first bite, I nearly cried at how perfect it tasted – and just like the restaurant versions I remembered.

I won’t lie: this is not a 30-minute meal. More like twice that. The assembling of all the elements takes a bit of effort. But if you love this dish like I do, it is so, so worth it. Promise.

Corn and Zucchini Sauté


Corn and Zucchini Sauté

barely adapted from Belly Full

Ingredients

  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small sweet onion, diced
  • 2 small zucchini, diced
  • 4 ears yellow or white corn, husks and silks removed, kernels cut off cob
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Method

Sauté bacon in a large skillet until some of the fat has rendered, about 2-3 minutes. Add in the butter and onion; sauté for 5 minutes until softened and translucent. Add zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender, 5 minutes. Add in corn kernels, salt, and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until corn is tender, about 3 minutes. Serve immediately.

NOTES

Buttery, bacony, summer vegetable goodness. Not often a side dish blows us away like this. And zucchini is even one of Steve – and MY – least favorite vegetables. But we both said we could eat the whole pan ourselves; it’s that good. Go make it. Immediately.

Creamy Salsa Chicken

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Creamy Salsa Chicken
adapted from Dinners, Dishes & Desserts

Ingredients

  • 1-1/4 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1 medium sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon chile powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups salsa
  • 1 cup stock or water
  • 1 cup corn kernels
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish

Method

In a large skillet over medium high heat, brown chicken for 4-5 minutes until no longer pink. Add onion and saute for another 2-3 minutes until onion is soft and chicken is cooked through. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add seasonings, salsa, water, and corn to the pan and stir to combine. Turn heat down to medium low and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove pan from heat and stir in the sour cream and lime juice. Sprinkle with fresh cilantro.

NOTES

My kind of meal: one pan, 20 minutes, simple, totally delicious. I served it over Spanish rice with a warmed, rolled up corn tortilla on the side. This one is definitely going on repeat!