Sunday, October 25, 2009

Garlic Chicken with Orzo Pasta

I love garlic. I love Parmesan cheese. And this dish makes me love spinach. Who knew that these three ingredients would go so well together? I was surprised by the extraordinary taste of this dish. It is delicious! All of the flavors and textures complement each other very well.

The Ingredients:

1) orzo pasta
2) olive oil
3) garlic
4) crushed red pepper
5) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into bite sized pieces
6) salt to taste
7) parsley
8) fresh spinach leaves
9) grated Parmesan cheese for topping

The Directions in a Nutshell:

You essentially cook the pasta, drain it, and set it aside. Then cook the chicken in small amount of olive oil; I always salt and pepper the meat to taste right before I put the meat into the pan. Then add the remaining ingredients, including the pasta. Cover the pan and cook for 5-10 minutes more, allowing the spinach to wilt a bit. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

The Changes I Made:

I made just two changes to the ingredients and both were based on what I had in my pantry.

1) I used a hot pepper sauce instead of the crushed red pepper. The particular brand is an Asian one, Sriracha, more commonly known as "the one with the chicken on it." Yes, I think it's pretty goofy to have a picture of a chicken on a bottle of hot sauce, but it's a common brand found in most grocery stores and it's certainly in every Asian grocery store. This is a very spicy hot sauce; I think it's spicier than Tobasco. A little bit of Sriracha goes a long way.

2) I used dried parsley instead of fresh. The rule of thumb for substituting dried herbs for fresh is to use 1/2 of the amount called for if using the dried herb.

Nutritional Information

Servings Per Recipe: 4
Amount Per Serving:
Calories: 351
Total Fat: 10.6g
Cholesterol: 38mg
Sodium: 164mg
Total Carbs: 40.4g
Dietary Fiber: 2.9g
Protein: 22.3g


One last thing...


I haven't had pictures on the blog for a while because my camera hasn't been working. It's a Casio Exilim Z75. At first I thought the camera was broken, which was very frustrating because the camera is less than 2 years old. And it was $350--for that amount of money it should last a lot longer than 2 years! However, after some "internet research," I learned that the particular battery on my camera is known to be defective; it completely loses it's charge if it hasn't been used for a while; so much so that the battery charger doesn't even recognize it. I was so relieved when I read this! Replacing the battery: $17 from Amazon.com. A much better prospect than buying a new camera!

So I have placed my order with Amazon.com and I am eagerly awaiting my new battery. Hopefully next week's blog post will have pictures once more!

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