Lemon & caper pasta. It’s what’s for dinner. And I cheated on the chicken.

Last night I made the following menu for dinner:

  • Lemon pasta with capers
  • Grilled chicken with cherry tomatoes
  • Caesar salad
  • Honey roasted carrots
  • Sweet dinner rolls

Pretty yummy for a quick meal, if I do say so myself!

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The lemon pasta has become somewhat of a staple now, actually. I originally found the recipe in Laura Calder’s French Food at Home (she hosted my absolute favorite cooking show of all time by the same name).

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The recipe actually calls for heavy cream, but my family is sensitive to lactose (although we ate the recipe as-is a number of times in spite of it), so I decided to give it a try with skim, lactose-free milk and a quarter cup of butter. After that was the zest of about 3 lemons, then salt, pepper, & garlic powder to “taste”.

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I heated it up to boiling in a pot, then removed it from the heat and stirred in about half a cup of cheese (Monterey Jack, if you must know the full bastardization) and the juice of one lemon. I cooked and drained the pasta, then stirred in the lemon sauce, and voila!

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The taste was great! I don’t think I blended the cheese at the right time, though. Not sure if it was the more watery consistency of the milk that prevented it from blending, or the fact that I put it in with the lemon juice that doomed me most. Regardless, even though the cheese was slightly clumpy on the noodles, it was full of flavor. I’ll need a do-over to see if it’s a fixable problem.

carrotsThe carrots I had actually started first because they take forever to roast in the oven. I poured about half a bag of peeled, baby carrots in an oven-safe dish, covered the bottom to the dish with a bit of water, salt & peppered to taste, drizzled honey over top, and popped them in a 425 oven with foil on the top for about an hour or so. I checked and stirred them a couple of times, and removed the foil for the last 20 minutes. This is my favorite way to cook carrots. Still a touch crunchy, but full of honey flavor.

The Caesar salad and sweet rolls are pretty self-explanatory. Chop lettuce, add dressing and Parm, toss. Rolls, remove from package and place in nicer bowl. I was even able to let my preschooler help out with this part as a desperate attempt to keep her occupied. Hehe.

Now for the cheat: the chicken. Technically, I cooked it, but technically it was already cooked. You know, one of those packaged salad chicken strip pouches. So…I guess that means I reheated it. But I added cherry tomatoes to the pot while I did it!

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I love how sweet cherry tomatoes get when they’re cooked. Honestly, if I don’t know what to use for flavor in almost any meal, I just grab a handful of cherry tomatoes and toss them in the pan with whatever item is going into the oven or pot. It’s a charmer!

Yes, I know those tomatoes don’t look cooked, but trust me. Their insta-pop hot juices were there for everyone taking a bite. 🙂

Aaaaaand here’s the final spread! I wonder if I can use this blog as an excuse to get a new dish set and matching serve wear. [Insert evil plotting face and chuckle]

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That’s my share today! Talk to you soon.

-DJ

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