Tonight I came home wiped out exhausted. Not a tough day at work, but one that makes you want to just lay on the couch and watch reality TV or something else just as mindless. However, the issue of dinner was looming as it does every evening. I'd put chicken in the fridge to defrost two nights ago and it was ready to cook...can't ignore that. And I certainly don't want to put it in the trash (stinky, nasty, mess...blech) So, I peered into cupboards and refrigerator to put together a meal...boy did the fates smile down on us tonight! Here is where canning, freezing, shopping at Costco, and generally stocking up get us a good, healthy and delicious meal in a snap.
Grilled Chicken over Whole Wheat Pasta with Oven Dried Tomatoes
This was pretty simple...I had marinated the chicken breasts in Newman's Own low-fat balsamic vinaigrette to grill. We have a ton of whole wheat spaghetti from Costco, so I cooked up a package of it for this dinner. In a pan on the stove-top I toasted some pine nuts while this was cooking to top the pasta. I also warmed about half a jar of marinara sauce from Costco...the Mario Batali brand. About a week ago, I dried all of our cherry tomatoes from our CSA in the oven (took me about 20 hours...but that's a whole other blog!!) and jarred them in olive oil with thyme. I chopped up about half a jar of them while the pasta cooked and tore up a bunch of the basil from our CSA share this week. When the pasta was done, I drained it, put it in the serving bowl, dumped in the chopped dried tomatoes, some of the olive oil out of the tomato jar, the torn basil, the pine nuts, and about half of the warmed marinara sauce. I tossed the entire bowl of pasta together. We served the pasta topped with sliced chicken breast, topped with a few more pine nuts, some additional sauce and some shaved Parmesan. It was so stinking good! Completely healthy (the sauce didn't even have sugar added...extra healthy bonus for us!), and Jack even ate the pasta and sauce together. For dessert we split a small melon out of the garden. Sun-warmed and just sweet enough. Oooohhhhh my tummy is happy!
Now if I can rationalize the bottle of red wine we split I will be able to feel as though the entire meal and beverage choices were perfection...