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Chicken Spaghetti

Monday-Wednesday

Still hot (100+) and still inside this week. Pretty much just been doing some cooking. Since I really like to save $$$ by using leftovers, I’ve been concocting some new dishes – as you know I don’t like eating the same thing two times in a row if I can avoid it – and I don’t like throwing food out. So since we had spaghetti on Sunday, I had enough spaghetti noodles left for another meal – but wanted something other than meatballs and tomato sauce…again. After scrounging around in the fridge, I came up with (in addition to the noodles) broiled chicken breast and cooked spinach. Sounded pretty good to me. So I set to work. Before I start, this can be served a couple of ways…. casserole or a more traditional spaghetti plate as pictured. I’ll give you both versions.

First, in a small skillet saute about four cloves of chopped garlic in a little butter over low heat. While this is cooking, in a separate pot make a recipe of Alfredo sauce (recipe here) or if you like you can use an Alfredo sauce from the store. There are some sauces available in jars as well as dry-packaged mixes.

When the garlic is tender (don’t let it burn), add in cut-up bite-sized chicken and mix. Pour this mixture into the finished, hot Alfredo sauce and stir together.

Now you can decide if you want to make a casserole or serve on a plate like a more traditional spaghetti. The latter is what we did and served it up with a slice of garlic bread – it was delicious.

Had I wanted to make a casserole, I would have use a small greased ovenproof casserole dish, and then layered the ingredients as follows:

  • Chicken alfredo sauce (divide into 3 portions)
  • Spinach (2 portions)
  • noodles (2 portions)

Repeat layering sauce mixture, spinach and noodles using up all the ingredients, ending with the chicken alfredo-chicken sauce on top.

I probably would have put some shredded Mozzarella cheese on top or maybe some of the shredded Italian 4-cheeses you can buy at the store.

Bake in 350 degree oven until cheese on top is bubbly. Or cool down and freeze for another day.

Either way, it’s a flavorful, quick dish – especially if you have leftovers you want to use up.

Reviving Green Beans

Bought some green beans at the grocery – they weren’t the prettiest green beans I’d ever seen. Some were kind of puckered in a couple of places, some maybe even had a few shriveled spots… but – hey, they were on sale! I brought them home and cut off the ends and then put them to soak – completely covered – in a bowl of very cold water. Let them sit there for about 2 hours. When I came back you would not have known they were the same beans. Soaking in the cold water rehydrated them. No more puckers or shrivels. They looked nice and fresh and I was able to cook them, and have them turn out fine.

If you have a veggie that’s borderline like these beans – try soaking in some cold water. If this works – you’ll need to cook the veggie immediately or at least same day.   These rehydrated vegetables don’t maintain their ‘new life’ for long  but the cooked vegetables will keep for a few days in the fridge.

Thursday – PS

Good news… we had a huge rain storm come through late Wednesday afternoon (almost 2 inches rain!!). Bad news… we were without power for 12 hours starting around 5:30pm same day.

Since we hadn’t had any supper, that was a challenge. Didn’t want to set up the generator … just yet… so we had a 3-salad supper. I mixed up some tuna salad (by flashlight) we could eat with crackers, there was a mixed green salad already in the fridge and I added a cantaloupe-cherry salad for some ‘sweet’. We dined by ‘LED lantern’ and then went outside to sit on the front porch to wait… and wait… and wait.

At about 10:30 last night David decided it was time to hook up the generator and we connected the fridges and freezers. Also, used the power for a lamp and to run a fan to help keep us cool. After living all these years in the country we can pretty much bet that if the power isn’t on in 2-3 hours it’s going to be a long wait. So after getting everything hooked up, we settled down in the den to spend the rest of the night. Sleeping on the floor (on cushions) with the fan blowing on us was much easier than dragging wires through the house to the bedroom and surprisinigly so we stayed pretty cool… especially after opening the kitchen windows. Power was back on about 5am Thursday morning. Guess those guys must have worked all night to get things fixed – and we thought we had it rough.

PPS – David took the picture below from the front porch of the sky after the storm had passed through. It was quite beautiful.

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