November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

{my Isis and Cory last weekend, being silly in the car.}
I will probably be covered in spices and will definitely be too busy cooking dinner for my family tomorrow to pop in to wish you a happy Thanksgiving... so I wanted to do that today! I hope those of you who celebrate have a great day filled with family, fun, food and LOVE.  I am so thankful for my family, I can't wait to eat with, relax with and enjoy them tomorrow.
xoxo, thanks for reading! ♥

November 20, 2013

Farfalle with Grilled Chicken, Mushroom, Leek and Broccoli Cream Sauce

I just love having creamy pasta for dinner.  It feels like we are indulging and reminds me of having a restaurant dish - specifically one of my three favorite pasta dishes from The Cheesecake Factory. I have decided that this Knorr leek soup mix packet will be a staple in my kitchen.  It is one of my absolute favorite things to use when creating unique dishes.  I have made a creamy potato side dish with it, as well as a loaded potato and leek soup {recipe coming soon!}.  This little packet provides so much flavor.  It definitely packed a punch in the cream sauce for this pasta!
Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 1/2 Cups Fresh Broccoli Florets, chopped in small pieces
1 Cup Fresh Mushrooms, chopped in small pieces
1 Medium Onion, diced
1 Box of Farfalle Pasta {or pasta of your choice} cooked and drained
3 Tablespoons Butter
1{heaping} Cup Freshly Grated Parmesan-Romano Cheese
1 Pint Half and Half
1 Can Chicken Broth
1 Teaspoon Seasoned Salt
Salt and Pepper to Taste
2 Tablespoons Peanut Oil {or any oil} 
{Before you begin, heat your grill pan over medium high heat until it is really hot. Place your chicken breasts {I used thin cut} in a large bowl.  Add the oil, seasoning salt and pepper.  Mix well to coat the chicken so that it doesn't stick to the grilling pan.}


{Grill your chicken in the really HOT grill pan.  Be sure to open a few windows as your kitchen will be smoky!  Cook for about 6 minutes on each side, or until cooked through.  You could also just sauté the seasoned chicken a skillet!}

{In a large skillet over medium heat, start your cream sauce.  Begin by adding your butter and onions.  Let them start to cook and get translucent.}

{While your onions are cooking, chop your broccoli and mushrooms. Reserve some of the broccoli for later.}

{Add them to the skillet with the onions and butter. Season with salt and pepper.  Note: the mushrooms WILL absorb most of the butter. That's ok!  Let this continue to sauté until the veggies are tender and begin to brown, about 8 minutes.  This combination smells SO GOOD. Yum! I love mushrooms!}

{This is a multi-tasking recipe.  While your veggies are sautéing, you will be grilling up all of your chicken breasts, flipping and removing them when needed.  Keep the cooked chicken tented with foil until the sauce is done.  You could also just cook up all of your chicken breasts and THEN start the cream sauce.}

{After about 8 minutes, the veggies will be brown and delicious.  Be sure to constantly stir this to prevent the bottom from getting too brown.  At the end of the cooking, add in the reserved fresh florets to add some texture.

{Lower the heat a bit and sprinkle in your leek soup mix packet.}

{Mix it well with the sautéed veggies.}

{Add in the can of chicken broth and also 1/2 can of water.  Let this simmer for about 4 minutes until it starts to thicken a bit.}

{Add in the half and half ... }

 {and fresh Parmesan-Romano cheese.  Add black pepper to taste.}

{Let this bubble over low heat for about 8 minutes or so to thicken.  Taste for seasoning!}
{Add your cooked pasta and mix well.  I only added about 3/4 box, cooked.  If you add in the whole box, you may need to add some more half and half or milk to loosen the sauce a bit.}

{Plate the pasta and top it with a sliced chicken breast and freshly grated Parmesan.} SO SO delicious!  Serve with a side salad and fresh bread for a complete meal.  And wine for the adults. :)
For a vegetarian option, you could always omit the chicken and swap the chicken broth for vegetable broth.  Either way - this leek soup mix is the BUSINESS and takes this pasta to the next level.
Let me know if you plan to try this one! :)
P.S. - one of my favorite recipes was added to one of my new favorite websitsites, yay!  - All Free Casserole ~ 
xoxo, thanks for reading! ♥
*this is NOT a sponsored post.  I really do just love this soup mix.

November 18, 2013

Weekend Style: Faux Leather Jacket + Sweats

{Sweats ~ Philip Lim for Target / Slouchy Gray Tee ~ Gap / Blue Faux Leather Moto Jacket ~ Forever21 / Nike Dunk Wedges {switched the laces for these blue ones :)}
It was so unbelievably warm and gorgeous this past weekend.  I could hardly believe we are in the middle of November and coming up on Thanksgiving!  I was excited to wear this faux leather jacket and was almost HOT with it on.  Craziness!  I can also see this zipped up with a chunky scarf when it does get cold again since yall know I am famous for wearing an inappropriately thin coat in the winter, Lol!  I have such an aversion to bulky coats. 
I relaxed all weekend and threw this on visit my bestie and go see The Best Man Holiday.  Was such a good movie, did you catch it?
xoxo, thanks for reading! ♥
P.S. - coming right back atcha with a yummy pasta recipe post.  :) Stay tuned if you'd like.

November 4, 2013

Weekend Style: Leopard Harem Pants


{Leopard Harem Pants ~ Forever 21 + / Black Tee ~ Target / Denim Shirt ~ NY&Co. / Ivory Hi Top Converse Sneakers}
These are my very favorite pants in my closet at the moment.  They are so insanely comfy and are just my style.  I will be dressing these up soon with the holiday season approaching and I just cannot wait.  Although they are "harem" style, they are very flattering to my larger body {thunder thighs! LOL} and have the perfect fit throughout the leg. For reference, I am wearing an XL. :) Jumbo hoops and sneakers were the perfect accessories for a comfy Saturday spent out and about with my family. 
xoxo, thanks for reading! ♥