Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Pinterest Challenge Day 21 & 22

Day 21

Cheddar Bacon Ranch Chicken Pasta, & Contact Paper Art Project

Yeah sooo this was a hit...but then any time that you cook things in bacon grease you really can't go wrong!  Obviously not the healthiest dinner in the world but Jake really liked it so this will grace our tables presence again!   

Cheddar Bacon Ranch Chicken Pasta

1 pound mostaccioli or other short pasta
6 strips of bacon, diced
1 tablespoon butter
2 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-size pieces
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 packet ranch dressing mix
2 cups milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Cook pasta according to package directions in boiling salted water; drain, return to pot, and keep warm.
2. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels. Drain all but one tablespoon of bacon drippings from the pan.
3. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add the butter to the reserved bacon drippings, then add the chicken to the same skillet. Cook until tender, no longer pink, and slightly browned.
4. Sprinkle the flour and ranch dressing mix over the chicken, stirring to coat evenly. Stir in the milk, and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened and bubbly. Stir in the cheddar cheese and half of the reserved bacon; cook and stir until the cheese is melted. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.
5. Add the cheese sauce to the reserved pasta and stir to combine. Serve each plate of pasta with more bacon sprinkled over the top. Green onions would also be a delicious topping.

Contact Paper Project

When I saw this pin I knew Kylie Jo would be all over it because she got to make a mess but her hands didn't have to get messy!  She gets pretty concerned when her hands start gettin messy!

First she had to rip tissue paper into pieces.  She spent a good 10 minutes just ripping the paper!  

Look at that concentration!  Who knew ripping tissue paper could be so much fun?

Once the tissue paper was ripped up we started sticking pieces onto our contact paper.  Then we started adding some glitter.  Whew glitter was an exciting turn of events for this glitter lovin girl!

Grabbed Duck to help out with this project.  (We picked just green because this was a St. Patricks-ish project)

All finished.  I'm a big fan of Kylie Jo helping clean up her messes!  Before we could move onto snack time (which she LOVES) all the extra tissue paper had to make it in the garbage!

This was really fun for Kylie Jo and really easy to get all together for me.  It's not something we will probably do again (except maybe for leaves in the fall) but it was a fun one time project!

Day 22
Avocado Lime Salmon

 One of my good friends in college made the best tilapia and I've been hooked on fish ever since!  Every single bite of fish that I take I seem to find myself letting out a nice long Mmmmmm!  There is just something about how a well cooked fish melts in your mouth.  So when I came across this recipe I was extremely excited to try it.

This was probably the single best recipe that I have yet to find for Salmon.  The seasoning rub on the fish is so tasty.  As if that isn't enough, the nice Avocado salsa on top really adds an interesting and delicious flavor.  Avocados are a staple in our house because they are arguable the best fruit out there!  They just have such a rich and creamy flavor....they added such a unique twist to this dish.  The fish was cooked nice and crispy on the outside and was melt in your mouth good on the inside.

Jake, an absolute fish hater, even liked this.  Not something he'll be requesting but for a person who doesn't like fish to eat the entire thing and say it was good is a BIG deal!

The only thing that I deviated from was cooking the fish on the stove instead of grilling it.  AND I used jalapeno peppers for the hot pepper but a red or yellow hot pepper would make the topping look so pretty!  I will be making this fish tomorrow for lunch and I cannot wait!

 Ingredients (for 4 people):
2 lbs salmon, cut into 4 pieces
1 tbs olive oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp paprika powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp black pepper
Avocado salsa
1 avocado, peeled, seeded and sliced
1 small red onion, sliced
3 mild hot peppers, seeded and deveined, diced or sliced
Juice from 2 limes
3 tbs olive oil
2 tbs finely chopped cilantro
Salt to taste
Suggested sides – Rice and patacones
  1. Mix the salt, coriander, cumin, paprika, onion and black pepper together, rub the salmon fillets with olive oil and this seasoning mix, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Pre-heat the grill.
  3. Combine the avocado, onion, hot peppers, cilantro, lime juice, olive oil and salt in a bowl and mix well, chill until ready to use.
  4. Grill the salmon to desired doneness. (OR cook on stove)
  5. Serve the salmon topped with the avocado salsa, and with rice.

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