Marinated Paprika Chicken and Veggies

How is today only Wednesday? The days seem slow and the evenings seem too fast! I guess that is how it always is, though. I haven’t really had a chance to sit down until now to do some blogging, so I figured I would do a little catch-up.

Monday night I made this yummy chicken and veggie dinner. We eat chicken a lot, so I love playing around with spice combinations and cooking techniques. You could add some heat to this by adding in some chili powder or red pepper flakes if you wanted to, but since my girls are not yet spicy fans, I omitted those.

Here is how it went down…

I first started out by marinating my chicken in olive oil and some spices.  I kind of just eyeballed everything, but for 5 boneless skinless chicken thighs I used about 1 heaping tablespoon paprika, 1 1/2 teaspoons each of garlic powder, onion powder, 3 stems of fresh thyme, and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. I let that marinate for about 30 minutes.

While I was waiting on the chicken, I chopped up all my veggies; broccoli, purple cauliflower, and small yellow potatoes. I rubbed them all in olive oil and salt and pepper. I roasted them all on a sheet pan at 400 for about 40 minutes. I did take the broccoli out earlier, because it was pretty thin and cooked faster. Just keep your eyes on them every once in a while.


While the veggies roasted, I heated up my cast iron pan to high. I cooked my chicken on each side until brown and the inside temperature came to 165. It turned out moist and full of flavor.img_1045

Chicken Bruschetta with Pasta – Gluten Free!!!

Hey guys. So one of my friends was going to come and hang out and offered to bring dinner tonight. I was going to take her up on it, when I totally felt like I needed to cook something. I told her to bring a salad and some red wine; I would take care of the rest. I had no idea what I wanted to make.

I had a day to myself… I went to Pilates, went to lunch, and got my hair done. Then I decided to go to Fresh Market to look around and decide once I got there.

I really wanted to make my Bruchetta Chicken with pasta and marinara. But my friend is gluten free, so I needed to first make sure I could find a decent gluten free pasta. Quinoa pasta is supposedly gluey, plus it cost like $8. Then I saw brown rice pasta. I thought I remembered Rachel Ray say she really liked this, plus it was on sale for $3ish. Score! I got chicken breasts, tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, anchovies (don’t balk yet!), and all the other ingredients for the sauce..

Bruchetta Marinara Sauce


2-3 anchovies
1/2 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
1/2 container mushrooms sliced and chopped
1 28 oz. can of crushed crushed tomatoes
1 28 oz. can of diced tomatoes
4 squirts of tomato paste
1/3 bottle of red wine; I used Cabernet
2 tablespoons of Worcestershire
2 pats of butter
3 tablespoons sugar.
3 tablespoons of Dried Italian Herb mixture
fresh basil crushed and chopped
1 bay leaf


Heat a large dutch oven on med-high heat with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 2-3 anchovies. I know some people are going to make the stink eye at my anchovies. Don’t ya’ll. One of the main ingredients in Worcestershire is anchovies! Worcestershire is a chef’s best secret ingredient. You eat it is Caesar Salad, Hamburgers, Meatloaf etc… Once those tiny fish hit the pan, they melt like butter. You will thank me. Please try them. If you want to try to make this, but don’t have anchovies, just add a couple more tablespoons of Worcestershire.

Add a bit more olive oil and your onions. Cook down for 2-3 minutes with a bit of salt and pepper. Add your Mushrooms and garlic. Cook for a few more minutes before adding your tomato paste. Mix that around for a few minutes. A deep tomato smell will fill the air after a couple of minutes. Then add in your wine and Worcestershire. Mix and reduce down for 5 minutes or so. Add your herbs, bay leaf, and sugar. Mix and Reduce to low. Cook for at least 1 hour…the longer the better.

Bruchetta Chicken

4 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts- season each side with salt and pepper.
Then, brown both sides of chicken in your cast iron skillet. Each side about 8-10 minutes. Put the pan in a 350 oven.

Cut a tomato and some mozzarella. Thinly slice some basil. I roll mine up then chop it up. Place these on top of your chicken in the oven. When you start to see your cheese melt a bit, turn on the broil. Cook until all the cheese is melted and browned on top.

I made the brown rice pasta according to the package. It still had a bit of a bite to it, so I added it the sauce. I mixed well. So yummy! I wouldn’t mind buying this pasta again for a gluten free friend =)


Spicy Chicken and Veggie Risotto

It seems lately I have been on a spicy kick. I have been adding hot sauce, red chili flakes, and jalapenos on just about everything. Maybe it is the cool weather rolling in that makes me want to spice it up? In any case, I felt like adding a punch to my dinner last night. Everyone was doing their own thing and going in different directions, so it was either have straight up leftovers or create something out of the leftovers from the fridge. I decided to create something new from something old.

Spicy Chicken and Veggie Risotto


1/2 rotisserie chicken, finely chopped or shredded
3 tablespoons butter or oil
half a can of tomato paste
3/4 opened stock in a box
half an onion, chopped
handful of mushrooms, quartered
can of green chilies
about 1/2 cup rice
1 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup parm cheese


Heat 2 tablespoons butter in medium sized pot over medium heat. Add onions and mushrooms and sauté until beginning to soften and brown around edges, about 5 minutes. Add 1 more tablespoon of butter. Add rice and stir 1 minute. Add in tomato paste and green chilies. Mix together well. Add 1 cup broth and simmer until absorbed, stirring frequently, 3 to 4 minutes. Add remaining broth by 1/2 cupfuls, allowing each addition to be absorbed before adding next, stirring often, about 15 minutes. Continue to cook until rice is just tender but still very creamy, stirring gently and often, about 10 minutes longer (about 25 minutes total cooking time). Remove from heat. Stir in 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and chicken. Stir to warm the chicken through, about 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to large bowl and serve with additional Parmesan cheese. You could make this vegetarian by leaving out the chicken and using veggie stock or water.


Corkscrew Pasta with Creamy Veggie Tomato Sauce

Leftovers for dinner tonight. Gotta eat up some food instead of wasting it. I still have to use us a bunch of veggies, so I decided to make this pasta for lunches and quick dinner if needed. Pretty quick vegetarian dinner. You could add some grilled chicken to this for a healthy protein if wanted. Very creamy but still uber healthy with all those nutrient rich veggies.

Corkscrew Pasta with Creamy Veggie Tomato Sauce

corkscrew pasta
a jar of creamy spinach tomato sauce (Classico brand- on sale)
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, crushed and minced
2 carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 container of cherry tomatoes
1 container of mushrooms
1/2 stalk of chopped broccoli (florets)
1/2 chopped each of yellow and orange peppers
1/2 bag of snap peas
1 handful fresh herbs, chopped- basil, oregano, and marjoram
salt and pepper


Add all chopped veggies in to a large pot. Cook down for about 15 minutes. Add pasta sauce. Cook down further while you make your pasta. Add in your cooked pasta. If thick, add a bit of the starchy cooking water. I added a bit at a time and had about 1 cup leftover. Everyone in this house loves eating the leftover pasta right out of the pan. This was a great pantry raid dish.


Spicy Quick Pickle Veggies

I had a ton of okra, beans, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, and peppers I got from the farmer’s market the other day, so I decided to make a jar of quick pickles. These guys turned out so good; super flavorful and very spicy.


a couple handfuls of okra- Trim off ends and slice okra in half
2 sweet peppers- 1 yellow, 1 green sliced in thin strips
1 jalapeno pepper, cut in half- I used the ribs and seeds, but you can take them out if you wish
handful of beans (green, purple, yellow)- Trim off ends
handful of cherry tomatoes, whole
3 garlic cloves, peeled, whole
3 1/2 cups cider vinegar
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon kosher salt
4 cups water
1 teaspoon whole coriander seeds
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
pinch of red pepper flakes
4 cups water


Add all the trimmed vegetables, except the garlic, into a large, stainless steel mixing bowl or stockpot. Combine all the rest of the ingredients in another large saucepan, and bring to a boil over med-high heat.

Carefully pour the boiling liquid over the vegetables, and make sure all the ingredients are submerged in the brine by using some large plates or glass platters to hold them under the liquid.

Cover and let cool to room temperature. Add them to your mason/Bell jar. Transfer to refrigerator and chill before serving. Pickled vegetables can be kept refrigerated, completely submerged in their liquid, in an airtight container, for up to 2 months. =) Enjoy!