Monday, July 14, 2014

Chicken & Gnocchi with Basil Pesto

Friends, this is a quick dinner -- like 15 minutes top! I cooked, we ate, and I cleaned within an hour.

Ingredients for the basil pesto:
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves, packed
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan
  • 1/4 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/8 cup Pine Nuts
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
I added all the pesto ingredients into my bullet (you can use a food processor, or blender) and let it rip!

Look how green!

Preparing the chicken & gnocchi:

I cut one chicken breast into bite size pieces, about as big as the gnocchi and browned the chicken in some olive oil. I used a large stainless steel skillet because the gnocchi and pesto are going to join the party in a little bit.

I added the gnocchi to some salted boiling water and cooked it for 2-3 minutes.

Chicken is all browned!

I added the gnocchi to the skillet and lightly browned them. At this point, the heat is on low.

I poured the pesto over the chicken and gnocchi and gave it a toss!

Beautiful! Ready for plating :)

I garnished each serving with chopped parsley and more Parmesan -- so good!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Fourth of July Jell-o Cups

Red, White, and Blue!

For the Fourth of July, I wanted to bring a dessert - and what says Independence better than Jell-o?!

To make the blue layer:

I used 2 - 6 oz. berry blue Jell-o boxes and a container of blueberries. It yielded about 28 Jell-o cups. I followed the directions on the box (add 4 cups of boiling water to the Jell-o powder and once dissolved, add 4 cups of cold water).

Using a baster, I filled the clear party cups about a third of the way up.

I wanted to create a tipsy look to the cups, so I added a make-up applicator wedge to the bottom of a cupcake pan. Below, you can see the wedge in one empty cupcake holder, what it looks like when the cup is resting on the wedge, and what it looks like without a wedge. Looking back, I would have just made hem all normal without using the cupcake pan -- but it was fun to try something new!

Halfway there!

Once filled, I threw a couple blueberries in each cup and let them set in the fridge for about 3 hours. 

To make the white layer:

I added 4 cans of sweetened condensed milk in a large bowl.

I added 4 cups of boiling water and stirred until the milk and water were incorporated well.

Looks perfect! Now to make it into Jell-o...

... you need 8 packets of unflavored gelatin and 2 cups of cold water.

I added the water to a bowl and sprinkled the gelatin powder on top. Let it sit for a couple minutes.

After a couple of minutes, I added 2 cups of boiling water and mixed the gelatin until dissolved.

Both mixtures are ready!

I poured the gelatin mix into the milk mix and stirred to combine.

I set the bowl aside and let it cool to room temperature. I stirred it about every 10 minutes,

Using the baster, I added it on top of the blue layer.

I sprinkled some coconut on top of each white layer and then put the cups back into the fridge.

You can kinda see the topsy-turvy look I was going for.

The white layer gelatized (not a word, but you know what I mean) very quickly so I got started on the red layer after about an hour.

To make the red layer:

I used 2 - 6 oz. boxes of strawberry Jell-o and a container of strawberries.

Just like the blue layer, I added 4 cups of boiling water to the powder, and after dissolved, added 4 cups of cold water.

Once the red mix was at room temperature, I grabbed the cups and got them ready to fill!

I thinly sliced the strawberries and had Will help me put some in each cup.

Messy, but fun!! They looked so yummy!

Ready to go back into the fridge!

All ready to party! You can serve them with cool whip and sliced strawberries and blueberries.