Thursday, December 2, 2010

take thanksgiving leftovers from YUCK to yummm!

     On Sunday, I had in mind to make something with turkey... one more time. My family was not interested in the least. Then, as if by divine intervention, I walked into Publix at just the right time. I could smell something wonderful as I came through the door.
     The lovely Publix lady was making a budget friendly meal that literally takes no more time to complete and serve than it took to boil a box of corkscrew noodles.
     It calls for cooked chicken, but I had all of the ingredients at home except the grape tomatoes and crumbled Gorgonzola. After making it according to directions, I found a couple of things I would change.
     First, I doubled the amount of Gorgonzola cheese. The one in the store was creamy and gooey. She had just finished preparing it, so as far as I can tell, it did not have time to soak up all the sauce. When I made it, I called everyone to lunch, as usual, it took a few minutes for all to arrive. In that five or ten minute span, the sauce seemed to disappear.
     I also decided to forgo the expensive European garlic butter, using regular salted butter and sauteing garlic before starting the sauce. I tossed in a splash of white wine and added red pepper flakes to give it some zing. Italian parsley gave it a touch of green, but I wonder if some arugula or spinach would be good... Maybe next time.
     We enjoyed steamed veggies and fresh bread with this lunch. It took about 10 or 15 minutes from car to table. The Publix recipe card says that it costs less than $15 to feed a family of four. I submit that it costs less than that, providing you have leftover meat from your faithful Thanksgiving bird!
Ingredients
1 pound corkscrew pasta, prepared according to pkg. directions, reserving 1 c. pasta cooking liquid
4 T. salted butter
4 cloves minced garlic
1 t. red pepper flakes
1 pint grape tomatoes, sliced in half
10 oz. cooked chicken or turkey
1/4 c. dry white wine
8 oz. crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
Italian parsley, finely chopped
black pepper
Directions
Prepare pasta, reserving liquid, just before draining. Preheat large saucepan. Melt butter, saute garlic and red pepper. Add chicken and tomatoes and cook until chicken is warmed through, about 2 minutes. Pour in wine, cheese and parlsey. Toss with pasta until cheese is melted. Add freshly ground black pepper. If pasta dish is dry, add a small amount of reserved pasta liquid, mixing well.

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