Monday, October 27

EASY Creamy Tomato, Spinach and Basil Pasta

It may be almost November and here in Utah my tomatoes are finally in mass production mode. Call them late bloomers but I am thrilled to be picking more than just one or two tomatoes each day.

Anyway, the hubs and I were "starving" after church yesterday and with a full afternoon planned an easy lunch was a requirement. So with a bowl of fresh tomatoes, tons of basil in the garden and a box of spinach spaghetti in the pantry this easy pasta dish was just begging to be created!

Creamy herb white sauce, vine ripened tomatoes and baby spinach even my 11 month old wanted a second helping. Enjoy.

EASY Creamy Tomato, Spinach and Basil Pasta

Serves 2-3

8 oz spinach spaghetti pasta
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon whole wheat flour
1 3/4 cup milk
1 1/2 cups fresh tomatoes, diced
1 tablespoon fresh basil, minced
2 cups fresh baby spinach
1/2 teaspoon thyme
Parmesan cheese, optional

Bring a large pot of water to boil and cook pasta until al dente. Meanwhile in a skillet over medium heat, saute garlic with butter for 1 minute. Stir in flour and continue cooking for another minute. Whisk in milk and stir until no lumps remain. Continue cooking and stirring for about 5 minutes until sauce thickens. Reduce heat to medium-low and stir in the tomatoes, basil, spinach, thyme and salt and pepper to taste. Serve sauce over prepared pasta and garnish with grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Friday, October 24

Easy Crock Pot Chicken Curry

Last summer I had dinner with a sweet friend from college. Although we live on opposite sides of the country and only see each other a couple times a year, the times we do get to hang out seem as if no time has past since the last visit. It's one of those friendships you can jump in right where you left off and the time lapse doesn't matter.

Anyway, for dinner that evening she served the most scrumptious crock pot chicken curry. Tender, juicy and bursting with flavor I was surprised how EASY she said the recipe was to make. She shared that the recipe was from a friend and has given me permission to share with all of you!

I'm writing this as phenomenal smells are drifting from my kitchen. I'm pretty sure I'm drooling or close to it and trying not to sneak too many bites before the hubs comes home.

Adapted from the kitchen of Shaye S.

Serves 4

Easy Crock Pot Chicken Curry

1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken breasts
1 can full fat coconut milk
4 tablespoons yellow curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
2 cups diced tomatoes
3 tablespoons honey


Basmati rice

Combine all curry ingredients in a crock pot. Cook on HIGH for 4 hours. Shred chicken and cook on LOW for 4 additional hours. Serve over basmati rice and top with peanuts and raisins.

*** I love to cook my rice with 1/2 teaspoon turmeric and 1 tablespoon butter to give it a nice rich color and flavor***

Monday, October 20

Sweet Potato Ravioli with Balsamic Caramelized Onions

Autumn is my absolute favorite season. Between the gorgeous fall colors against a clear blue sky, the warm days and cool nights, cozy soups, chai tea and the excuse to pull out every recipe calling for pumpkin, squash or sweet potato I adore this season!

These ravioli are the essence of Autumn wrapped up in a savory sweet potato filling encased in a crispy won ton pastry and topped with incredible warm and rich caramelized onions. These would make an awesome harvest party appetizer and can easily be made ahead, popped in the freezer and cooked when convenient for you.

Sweet Potato Ravioli with Balsamic Caramelized Onions 

Serves 4

Potato Filling
2 Sweet potatoes pealed and cubed
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup milk
Pinch of fennel
1/4 teaspoon cumin
Dash of sea salt
Dash of black pepper

Caramelized Onions
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

25 won ton wrappers

Peal and cube sweet potatoes. Bring to a boil and cook until tender. When potatoes are fork tender, drain water and add butter, milk, fennel, cumin, sea salt and black pepper. Mash until smooth.

In a skillet heat olive oil and butter over medium heat, add sliced onion and saute until soft. Stir in balsamic vinegar and set aside.

To prepare ravioli. Place 1 teaspoon of the sweet potato filling in the middle of the won ton wrapper. Dip your finger in water and wet the edges of the won ton wrapper. Fold and seal ravioli and set on a lightly greased cookie sheet while you prepare the remaining ravioli.

In a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, drizzle in a little olive oil. brown ravioli in batches until each side is golden brown. Serve with warm caramelized onions and wilted spinach and kale greens.

***To make ahead. Freeze in single layers between wax paper before cooking. Allow to thaw in the fridge before pan frying. ***