Tuesday, January 27, 2009

the chic life's cooking challenge ~ pumpkin edition

a few months ago i somehow stumbled on a great new blog: the chic life...recently she started a weekly food challenge and last week i took the canned pumpkin/pumpkin seed challenge since we eat lots of canned pumpkin in the fall and winter and i knew i had both ingredients in the pantry already.

for my first meal i made my version of rachael ray's penne wise pumpkin pasta...here is the cast of characters:
i added chicken to our pumpkin pasta on saturday nite...sometimes i add sweet italian turkey sausage...sometimes no meat...depends on what if anything was on sale at the market.

i cut the chicken breasts into chunks and sauteed them in olive oil after sprinkling them with greek seasoning (my go-to spice blend)

because i only had one shallot, i added a medium diced onion along with the garlic (i use the jarred minced garlic just to save time)

here the pumpkin is added to the garlic, shallot, onions and chicken broth...if you are a vegetarian, i think you could use vegetable broth and get a similar result

in my opinion the key ingredient is freshly grated nutmeg!

and finally, lots of parmesan and fresh sage

the finished result: the chicken, penne and sauce all tossed in a large pasta serving bowl!

i followed the recipe exactly save for: i omitted the cinnamon and added about 1/2 cup white wine as my sauce seemed a bit too thick this time...and i was drinking wine anyways so i figured what would it hurt!

sidetrack a bit on the challenge
sunday nite we had chicken kabobs with trader joes peanut satay sauce...just had to report it is SO good! along with the new kashi pilaf it made for a great quick cook meal...

back to the challenge...i still needed to make something with the pumpkin seeds so i made a batch of pumpkin muffins on sunday afternoon...

i cannot give the recipe cause i meddled together about 3 different recipes and used lots of odds and ends based on what was in the pantry vs. what the recipe called for: whole wheat flour instead of regular, applesauce instead of melted butter, lite brown sugar instead of dark brown, etc...the moral of the story is it's OKAY to try different things...these muffins are really good and i froze the rest of them for yummy weekend breakfast treats...i added in white chocolate chips, chopped crystallized ginger, dried cranberries and sprinkled the pumpkin seeds on the top.
challenge met!

1 comment:

Pam said...

I think I could eat that entire bowl of pasta right now.