I’m a terrible blogger

15 Apr

I’m really not a terrible blogger. But today, I made two fantastic recipes and neglected to take any pictures of either one. FAIL. So just read along and use your imagination. Well, and the pictures from the original blogs.

First up, chicken pasta with lemon cream sauce.

image courtesy of The Comfort of Cooking

I found the recipe on the Comfort of Cooking blog. It sounded good, and I thought I could lighten it up some. First I baked some chicken seasoned with salt and pepper. Then I cooked some whole wheat rotini and drained it in a colander over some frozen peas. (Oops, forgot to buy asparagus, so it’s just peas!) In a pan, I melted some butter and sauteed some garlic in it. I added a cornstarch/chicken broth mixture and let it thicken. I stirred in fat-free half-and-half, lime juice (because I didn’t have lemons), salt and pepper. I mixed the sauce with the pasta and added the chicken on top. Voila! Lunches for the week.

Next up: dessert!

image courtesy of Tracey's Culinary Adventures

A recipe found on Tracey’s Culinary Adventures sounded fantastic. It mixes the best combination of salt and sweet. Yes! So I made a base of shortbread and let it cool. Then I made a caramel mixture, spread it on top of the shortbread, and let it cool. Then I melted some chocolate and spread it on the top. Right now it’s all cooling in the fridge so it doesn’t get too gooey. Can’t wait to try it!

***
Chicken Pasta with Lemon Cream Sauce (from The Comfort of Cooking)

Ingredients:
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken
8 ounces uncooked rotini
1.75 cups (1 1/2-inch) slices asparagus (about 1/2 pound)
1 cup frozen green peas, thawed
1 tablespoon butter
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/3 cup heavy cream (I used fat-free half-and-half)
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Dash of crushed red pepper flakes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place chicken on a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, or until fully cooked and juices run clear. Set aside.

Cook pasta according to package directions. Add asparagus during last 2 minutes of cooking time. Place peas in a colander. Drain pasta mixture over peas; set aside.

Melt butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic to pan; saute 1 minute. Combine broth and cornstarch in a small bowl; stir until well blended. Add broth mixture to pan; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute or until thick, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in half-and-half, juice, salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Add pasta mixture to broth mixture; toss gently to coat. Slice chicken and serve on top of pasta.

***
Salted Caramel Chocolate Bars (from Tracey’s Culinary Adventures)

Ingredients:
For shortbread:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar

For caramel:
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk

For chocolate:
8 oz chocolate, finely chopped (I used bittersweet)
1 teaspoon light corn syrup
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
Fleur de sel for sprinkling (optional) (I used sea salt)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with parchment paper.

To make the shortbread layer: Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until well combined, about 2 minutes. With the mixer on low, gradually add the dry ingredients and beat just until combined. Transfer the dough to the prepared pan and press into an even layer over the bottom (it’ll be a fairly thin layer). Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and cool completely.

To make the caramel layer: Combine the butter, sugar, corn syrup and sweetened condensed milk in a medium saucepan. Set the pan over medium heat. Stir occasionally until the butter is melted. Increase the heat to medium-high, and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens and turns a light caramel color. This may take 10 minutes or more, so be patient. (And know you will have a sore arm for constantly whisking the mixture for 10 minutes.) Pour the caramel mixture over the cooled shortbread and spread in an even layer. Allow to cool completely, then chill briefly (I stuck mine in the fridge for a few hours, but you just want to chill enough that it won’t melt when you add the warm chocolate in the next step).

To make the chocolate layer: Add the chocolate, corn syrup, and butter to a heatproof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water. (Ah, the double boiler method! My favorite one for melting chocolate.) Heat, stirring occasionally, until everything is melted and the mixture is smooth and glossy. Pour the chocolate over the chilled caramel and spread into an even layer with an offset spatula. Let cool for a few minutes, then sprinkle the top with the fleur de sel (if using). Let the chocolate set completely before slicing and serving.

One Response to “I’m a terrible blogger”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Weekly roundup « The Reinvented Lass - April 16, 2012

    [...] *Made a great chicken pasta with lemon cream sauce and a FANTASTIC chocolate salted caramel shortbread. YUM. [...]

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