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Tonight, we were supposed to be going out for dinner. However, the wood stove was too warm and comfortable and the company was good. We were cozy and Mother Nature wasn’t making leaving the nest too desirable even for an anticipated night out. Not having planned on making dinner tonight, this was a throw-together. Sometimes, honestly, I think the “open the pantry and empty the fridge” meals somehow turn out to be the best meals of all.

The ingredients on hand:

  • leftover boiled chicken breast
  • fresh basil
  • garlic
  • broccoli crowns
  • red bell pepper
  • chili garlic sauce
  • olive oil
  • potato gnocchi

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I sauteed the vegetables together, added the shredded chicken and a very little olive oil (the special one that Tim brought back from Spain) seasoned it with a little kosher salt and a teaspoon of chili-garlic sauce. Added the gnocchi when it was cooked (which didn’t take long at all) and topped it with a couple grinds of shredded asiago cheese. Served it with some warm homemade bread. We enjoyed it by the fire with some great music playing in the background. Very delicious, indeed.

 

 

 

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Last night was cold and sleeting and very, very windy. It was a good night to make a good meal. We had a pasta, chicken and veggie dish and dinner rolls.

The rolls, which are one of my new favorite recipes, came from King Arthur’s website. The recipe, which I have changed slightly is easy and for a yeast dough, relatively quick.

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/4 t. active dry yeast
  • 1 1/8 cups warm water
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 t. salt
  • 3 T. honey
  • 6 tablespoons butter at room temperature
  • 1/4 c. nonfat dry milk
  • 1/2 c. instant potato flakes

Process:

  1. Put yeast into the bowl of stand mixer, add the warm water and a dash of sugar to start the yeast. Let it sit for about 15 minutes or until you notice the yeast starting to foam.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and knead for about 5-7 minutes. The dough should be smooth and formed into a ball.
  3. Place the dough into an oiled container, cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about one hour. (I sometimes preheat my oven and turn it off and then put the dough in there to proof.)
  4. When the dough has doubled, take it from the container, place it on a silpat or other non-stick surface and divide in half. Divide each half into half and then in half again until you have 16 pieces.
  5. Roll each piece into a ball and place them into two round cake pans which have been oiled. It should look like this:
  6. Cover and allow to rise until they touch, about another 30 minutes. They should look like this:
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place both pans in the oven and cook for 25 minutes or until golden brown. When the rolls come out of the oven, sprinkle with flour to give the “snowflake” roll look.

The original recipe can be found at King Arthur’s site.

The pasta dish was a classic “throw together” with leftover chicken, green bell peppers, a fresh leek from the garden, garlic, oil cured pitted olives, basil, oregano, onions and broccoli florets all sauteed and tossed with some olive oil over cavatappi pasta.

 

And in response to those of you who ask why I prefer pictures of food to my children sometimes, I leave you with this photo:

Evilwife on the move

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