Boursin Chicken and Peas with Parsley Noodles

How is it possible that January is half-way over? The holidays flew by with a whoosh of activity and a smidge of travel, and now it’s the new year.

Do you look back and see what was left undone in the old year, before adding it to the new year’s To Do list? I do, and my 2018 is looking as crazy-busy as 2017 was in some respects.

I have started saying No. No, I won’t sign up for another two-year term on a non-profit board (which would be a second consecutive stint, and my fourth two-year term overall). I term out on another non-profit board in June, right before our family vacation/reunion in Maine.

I need to write more this year than I did last year, and saying No is my strategy.

I did say Yes to Husband this morning, when he asked for Chicken Noodle. Not soup, not a stew, it’s a fast and easy dinner I can get on the table within 30 minutes after walking in the door. Today I decided to fancy it up, because he’s worth it.

Boursin Chicken and Peas with Parsley Noodles

1 pound chicken tenders, tossed in seasoned flour

1 8 oz package sliced mushrooms

1 sweet onion, diced

1/3 C chicken stock, or as needed to create sauce

Boursin cheese, garlic and herb flavor

1/2 package frozen peas

1/2 package medium egg noodles

4 T oil, divided

4 T butter, divided

Parsley (I used Garden Gourmet freeze-dried parsley)

Salt and pepper

Boil water and prepare egg noodles according to package directions. Drain the noodles and return to the pot, tossing with 2 T butter, salt and pepper, and parsley. Boom – Parsley Noodles!

While the water boils and the noodles cook, heat oil in large skillet on medium heat. Add coated chicken and cook for 4 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Remove from pan (chicken won’t be cooked through – not to worry). Add oil and butter to pan and add mushrooms, let cook for 3 minutes, then add onion and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 2 minutes before adding chicken stock.

Return chicken to skillet, cover, and cook for 5 minutes. Add boursin cheese and stir into stock and vegetables; add peas, cover, and cook for another 5 minutes.

Plate Parsley Noodles and top with Boursin Chicken and Peas; sprinkle parsley over all. Fast, easy, and best of all, delicious!

Goat Cheese with Raspberries

Sometimes I like to spend a few hours in the kitchen preparing a delicious meal that will be eaten in minutes, and then spend hours in the kitchen cleaning up. Mostly not, though.

I usually don’t have that kind of time. Between work, family, writing, and life in general, what I love most are a few simple ingredients with big flavor that are easy to prepare and beyond tasty.

We went to Jacksonville, FL, to see family at Christmas. My niece Nicole made this delightful appetizer that has four ingredients and amazing flavor.

Tangy, sweet, crunchy, creamy – the perfect mix of taste and texture.┬áThis is my New Year’s gift to you!

Goat Cheese with Raspberries

1 log goat cheese

1 pint raspberries

Pepitas

Honey

Place the log of goat cheese in the center of a serving dish. Surround the goat cheese with raspberries, sprinkle pepitas over the top of the goat cheese, and drizzle honey over everything.

Serve with crackers or crisp bread.

Brie with Fruit Spreads

Our annual Sausage Party is an excuse for me to try new recipes and add to the food-a-palooza that is the buffet. I make Chocolate Chip Cookies, Cream Cheese and Olives, and always something new.

I had over half of a Brie cheese leftover after making Brie & Chutney Bites, and thought about what I could do with it. Brie is a soft cheese with a mild flavor which lends itself to topping with sweet or savory flavors.

I had strawberry preserves leftover from making Mini Victoria Sponges, chutney leftover from the Brie & Chutney Bites, and fig jam in my refrigerator. A variety of flavors and colors, and presto! A new platter for the Sausage Party.

Brie with Fruit Spreads

1 round Brie, rind on

Three jams/chutneys/spreads of your choice

Crackers

I used three small parfait glasses with their small spoons to serve the fruit spreads, one each of fig jam, strawberry preserves, and Major Grey’s Chutney.

Triscuits are my cracker of choice for Cream Cheese and Olives, and they worked well with the Brie and fruit spreads too!

Fast, easy, and adjustable to the flavors you and your family prefer.

Happy Holidays to you and yours!

Brie & Chutney Bites

Our annual Sausage Party was held December 16th. This year friends and family made 180 pounds of Italian pork sausage, and there was a feast of food and drink for everyone to enjoy.

My husband’s family started this tradition. A friend of the family was Italian, and Husband’s parents and grandfather would make a few pounds of sausage. As the younger generation took over and invited friends, we’ve morphed into an annual tradition of our own.

People make their specialties for a snacking potluck; food and drinks are available all day long, and it’s a day for grazing. The only formal meal is dinner: We grill 5 pounds of sausage served in toasted hoagie rolls and topped with onions and peppers. A spicy or horseradish mustard is a tasty addition, too. Husband makes his German Potato Salad, and it’s a fine ending to a fun day.

I always make desserts and take some appetizers. My go-to recipes are Chocolate Chip Cookes and Cream Cheese and Olives. I also made Mini Victoria Sponges. I made spritz cookies for the first time, which turned out well. I also made Brie & Chutney Bites. If you need a fast, three-ingredient recipe, these are delicious.

Brie & Chutney Bites

2 packages filo shells from the freezer case

1 round of Brie, rind on, cut into chunks

1 jar of Chutney, any flavor (I used Major Grey’s Chutney)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place the filo shells in mini-muffin tins. Into each shell, put one chunk of Brie and a scant teaspoon of chutney.

Bake for 10 minutes; remove from oven. I transported these in the muffin tins and plated them at the host’s home.

Any flavor jam or chutney can be used.

Happy Holidays to all!