Thursday, March 19, 2009

.orecchiette w/ chicken, spinach, and lentils.

My husband has been working 12 hour night shifts the past week and a half.  He works this 6 days a week and has only one day off.  He'll be working these hours until mid April. Yikes.  As tough as it is for all of us, it's even tougher trying to work out a good mealtime for us all because when he needs to eat, it's still too early for us girls.  It's tough!

This explains why I haven't posted as many recipes, because I've been making my go to meals that I already have posted on the blog.  I did try a new recipe the other night and it's one of those perfect meals that you can make in about 30 minutes (give or take).

Orcchiette pasta is native to southeastern Italy that resembles the shape of an ear.  It's name actually translates to "little ear".  Too cute, huh?   I came across a similar recipe for this on a blog and took mental notes of what all went in it.  Their version was vegetarian so you can easily keep the chicken out of this dish if you want something lighter for a spring dish... or even a side dish for that matter!

Put 1/2 cup lentils in a small pot and fill it halfway up with water.  Bring the lentils to a boil, cover with a lid and reduce the heat to low.  Let these start cooking before you do anything else.  You want to make sure they're cooked all the way.

They should be tender and soft when you bite into it.  If they're still a little crunchy, keep cooking.  You may need to add more water to the pan if it evaporates too much.

Peel and slice 2 cloves garlic.  I didn't mince the garlic this time because I wanted larger pieces so they wouldn't get lost in the dish.

Take 1 to 1 1/2 cups fresh baby spinach and roll up as best you can.  Take your knife and thinly slice the spinach.  They call this slicing "chiffinade".

Slice one onion.  Cut the slices in half.

Slice one lemon in half and remove the seeds.  Juice and set aside.

Chop a small handful Italian parsley.

Cut up 1 or 2 chicken breast into bite sized pieces.

Take your package of orecchiette pasta and cook according to the directions on it.

Heat 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil in a pan.  Saute the garlic, spinach, and onion for a couple minutes.

Add the chicken and continue to cook over medium low heat until the meat is cooked through.

When the pasta and lentils are cooked, drain both and add to the pan along with some parmesan cheese and the chopped italian parsley.  Season with salt and pepper.

Serve with bread and salad.  A wonderful light meal that you can have on the table within an hour.  You can't beat that!

Printable version:


Unknown said...

Looks yummy, and something everyone will eat. I'm also going to try your red cabbage that you had w/your schnitzel and spatzel. We make schnitzel and spatzel all the time. We eat it so often we have a spatzel maker. Our first one broke, so we had to buy another!

Anonymous said...

Wow, my husband is working the same way until mid April! I am wondering if we live near each other and don't know it!

This meal looks great! I am going to try it out!

Kristine said...

I am such a pasta fan, but I've never heard of these "little ears"! This recipe sounds so good and light. I can't wait to try it!

Karalynn Tyler said...

I'm making this recipe tonight- sounds yummy! However... you had us juice a lemon and set it aside. And then when do we use it??? Did I miss something? I could very well have missed that step since it's the first day of school and I'm dead tired...