Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Recipe: Chicken, Bacon & Feta Pasta

I've already let you know the deal - I am a huge fan of easy and cost-effective recipes that are family-friendly. I function by choosing a base ingredient that is prepped in advance, can be used in multiple recipes and suits the freezer-to-stove top or freezer-to-oven style of cooking. I am also keen to batch up a single recipe so that I can then easily rotate through meals during the month. Not only is this more cost effective but it is significantly more effective on the clean up.... saving time and money- that's how I roll!

With my recipes, you'll find strict quantities are not always mentioned. The emphasis on EASY is just that --- most often I am just throwing the ingredients in and enjoying dinner 15 minutes later! Ratios might apply and I'll note those but I encourage you to enjoy a little taste as you go and alter occasionally. Find what works for you. Add in a strict "no kids in the kitchen when Momma is cooking routine" (we have specific times for kid-friendly cooking but this Momma needs some peace when prepping dinner after work).... this--- then gives me 10-20 minutes of relative tranquility. Self-care as a Momma needs to be infused into our daily living and this is one strategy I accomplish just that!

Back to the recipe! While doing a mass batch up of chicken, I talked about shredded chicken - here - I also batch up diced chicken. My preference is for thinly sliced chicken breast I let cool, portion the chicken out and freeze in Zilpoc freezer bags. Of course, opportunities for diced chicken recipes are nearly endless but here's a one-pot, 10 minute recipe I discovered when searching for recipes with slightly over-ripe tomatoes... Chicken, Bacon & Feta Pasta

One other note for batching up before we get started, diced onions! Another great ingredient to take 30 minutes one day to diced and portion out, freeze, and then make use of just as you need!

Great one-pot dish! Alternatives can included spaghetti squash instead of pasta noodles for a gluten-free option.


Chicken, Bacon & Feta Pasta

 Ingredients:
- Diced Chicken
- Diced Onions
- Garlic
- Spinach, optional - if frozen cubes, we just use 2; if fresh, 2-3 handfuls
- Diced (cooked) Bacon (we buy from Costco). 1/4 cup is sufficient
- Diced Tomatoes
- Sliced mushrooms, optional --- we love mushrooms!
- Feta - 1/4 cup is sufficient... really depends on your taste
- Parmesan
- Spaghetti noodles (spaghetti squash is a great gluten-free alternative)

Method:
1. Thaw your chicken
2. Boil water for spaghetti noodles
3. Sautee onions and garlic in a dash of olive oil
4. After 1 minute, add spinach
5. After 1 minute, add mushrooms
6. After 2 minutes, add tomatoes
7. Add bacon
8. Once water is boiling, cook noodles for 10 minutes; drain, rinse with warm water, and add to wok; toss current ingredients
9. Toss with feta
10. Add in Parmesan or serve and add the Parmesan at the table

Great as a one-pot dish or serve with garlic bread or salad.


Side note: I will also batch up the spaghetti noodles so make a spaghetti night that same week a little easier --- one less pot to wash!