Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Tortellini & Tomato Salad


Back again with another super quick meal -- perfect for these dog days of summer!  This tortellini salad is a perennial favorite, but I think I've finally tweaked it to perfection this year... 


Tortellini & Tomato Salad
{adapted from Southern Living}\

Ingredients
- three 9 oz packages of fresh tortellini {I like the three cheese or spinach and cheese Buitoni tortellini}
- 2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved {I like to mix red and yellow}
- 1.5 cups fresh or frozen corn {if frozen, dethaw in the microwave}
- 3/4ths cup chopped basil 
- 3 cups fresh veggies {I used spinach this time, but chopped squash or zucchini or bell pepper or a combo is great, too!}
- 1/2 cup EVOO
- 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan
- juice of one large lemon {Meyer, if you can find one}
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce 
- salt and pepper to taste

Cook tortellini according to package directions.  Drain and allow to cool, then mix with tomatoes, basil, corn, and spinach {/veggies}.  

Whisk together EVOO, Parmesan, lemon juice, garlic, and Worcestershire sauce.  Pour over the tortellini mixture and toss to coat.  Chill for several hours before serving. 

Makes... um, a lot?  Enough for 6-10 servings depending on whether you're serving it alone.  We like it with a big green or fruit salad.   It would be a fabulous pick to bring a family welcoming a new baby! 

Monday, August 25, 2014

Ancho Chicken Tacos with Hatch-Mango Slaw

Well, I suppose summer is coming to a close.  In its official capacity, anyhow.  The pool closes next week, and L's little "school" {or whatever you're supposed to call a "Let's Get Socialized & Make Friends Without the Mommy-Referees Standing About & Learn to Respect Non-Parental Adult Authority & OH HEY MAMA CAN DO SOME SELFISH ADULT THINGS NOW YAYAYAYAY" program} starts on the 2nd.  We're squeezing in a few last splash-filled mornings and dusting off the ol' lunchbox and nut-free kidlet meal ideas. 


But just because my Facebook feed is jammed packed with Back to School snapshots {obnoxious, yes, but I swear it's an insurmountable compulsion} and Starbucks will be soon be rolling out its chilly weather goodies {go to hell, September PSL} doesn't mean we're unpacking riding boots or jumping for joy over pots of chili.  Au contraire, mon frere!  I'm so fucking hot, I could cry. And I probably will when I attempt to haul both children to the grocery store in a few hours and come home smelling as if I've competed in an Iron Man.  August in Texas is a Two-Showers-a-Day type of month.  And also a Turn-On-the-Oven-&-Die type of month.  Which is why I've thrown together a few posts for this week that require minimal {10 minutes or less} stove-top sweating and absolutely nil preheating effort.  

B's First Hatch Fest

First up, a recipe that brings the heat in a different way... The Hatch Chile way!  As many of you know, I've never met a Hatch I didn't like, and this season's crop is as delicious as ever!  These chicken tacos couldn't be easier, and the Hatches, combined with sweet mango and crunchy shredded broccoli, make the accompanying slaw nothing short of refreshingly spectacular! 


Ancho Chicken Tacos with Hatch-Mango Slaw
{adapted from Cooking Light & Nine + Sixteen}

Ingredients
- 1 lb chicken breast, chopped into tiny pieces
- glug of EVOO
- 3/4 T ancho chile powder
- 1/2 tsp garlic salt
- 1/2 tsp cumin 
- 1 bag shredded broccoli slaw {14 oz}
- 1 mango, peeled and diced 
- 1 small shallot, diced
- 1 bunch of cilantro
- 1 Hatch chile, de-stemmed {pick one that is entirely deep green in color; if you can't get Hatches, a poblano will work}
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
- juice of half a lime
- 1 Tbs sugar
- 1 Tbs seasoned rice vinegar
- salt and pepper to taste 
- tortillas 

In a Ziploc bag, toss chicken with ancho chile powder, garlic salt, and cumin.  Heat EVOO over medium heat, then add seasoned chicken, cooking until chicken is cooked through -- about 10 minutes. 

Meanwhile, mix slaw, mango, and shallot together in a bowl.  Pulse the remaining ingredients {aside from the tortillas} together in a food processor until smooth.  Add to bowl with slaw mixture and toss to coat. 

Serve chicken and slaw in tortillas.  Makes 8 tacos. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

miscellany

Thank y'all for all the kind comments on my latest DITL {gratitude only 13 days in the making - seems legit!}.  I tried to respond to any questions in the comments section, so give those a looksie if you had a query... And definitely check out Navigating the Mothership's round up -- I find these so. damn. fascinating.  I'm such a creepy voyeur.


E, B and I traveled to ATL last weekend to celebrate one of my very favorite people {and her very favorite guy}.  It was an exceptionally beautiful wedding with an even more gorgeous bride. B wasn't too enthused with his 3rd flight {after flying with kids unscathed many, many times, I guess our number was up; cue 40 straight minutes of screaming}, but totally rocked hanging out with E / J  / the babysitter without me {re: without my boobs} for nearly 48 hours.  No loyalty to the food source with that one, I tell ya.  I was so honored to be a part of L&D's big day, and we could not have had more fun "getting our BurtOn!"  And shacking with the M Family was icing on the wedding cake!


I planned on using our last few weeks of summer to dip our toes into the potty training pool.  Life and L had other plans, and we're now decidedly hanging out in the PT deep end.  I don't think I'll say much more about the process on social media {because, just, NO}, but we're having a decent amount of initial success with this Elmo Potty Seat, a sticker chart for "tryng," M&Ms for actual victories, and a "potty pal" {a stuffed puppy she picked out herself that she only gets to hold / play with if she's sitting on the potty}.  Basically, we're throwing everything and the kitchen sink into the bathroom in regards to motivation.  No shame in my bribery game. If you have an anxious and/or stubborn toddler, I can't recommend the extra motivation just for "trying" enough.


I continue to be very sad about Robin Williams.  Celebrity deaths rarely phase me much, and it actually feels wrong to be affected by the passing of someone I didn't know personally, but... I'm just sad.

The ongoing happenings in Ferguson are also weigh heavily on my mind {and I hate to list them behind potty training and Robin Williams... assume this cobbled-together post isn't ordered by significance}. There are so many unanswered questions surrounding Michael Brown's death, and, if we're talking about "sides," I think there has been bad behavior all-around.  But I hope the resulting dialog regarding race relations, the media's treatment of victims based on skin color, peaceful vs violent protests and law enforcement's reactions to each proves productive. I very much enjoyed Kelly's thoughts as a parent of a toddler on the subject. 

On a lighter note, where has The Good Wife been all my life? Three Cheers for Amazon Prime streaming video and early morning nursing sessions. I want to be Alicia {sans philandering spouse}. If only law firm life were actually so exciting.