Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Mandarin Chicken Pasta Salad

I don't have a pic for this yet, I had it at a bridal shower a year or so ago and had to contact the bride for the recipe! I've been craving it ever since, it's an excellent party dish. I'll be making it for my sister's baby shower at the end of this month.

Mandarin Chicken Pasta Salad

1 bag fusilli, rotini or bowtie pasta
4 small chicken breasts
2 cans mandarin oranges
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1 cup chopped celery
1 bottle of Brianna's Poppy Seed Dressing
1 cup sliced almonds or cashews
salt and pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to package directions. Steam chicken on stove top with 1-2 cups of water, covered for about 20 minutes. (Check water level at close to the end you don't want to burn the bottom of the chicken.) Check to make sure fully cooked. Cut into 1/2 inch pieces. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, maybe a little garlic salt.

Drain the oranges. Blend in dressing, as well as the rest of the ingredients. Chill until served. Tastes excellent in croissants or dinner rolls.

Potatoes au Gratin

Potatoes au Gratin
adapted from Pioneer Woman

4 large Russet potatoes, peeled or scrubbed
2 Tbsp. butter
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup fat free milk
3 1/2 Tbsp. flour
3 tsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. salt and more for sprinkling potatoes
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Smear butter all over bottom and sides of a 8x8 baking dish. Slice potatoes and then cut into fourths, giving them a small sprinking of salt. In a seperate bowl wisk together cream, milk, flour, minced garlic, salt and lots of ground pepper (don't skimp, you'll regret it :) )

Place 1/3 potatoes in the bottom of the baking dish. Pour 1/3 of cream over potatoes. Repeat two more times, ending with the cream mixture. Cover with foil and bake for 40 min. Remove foil and bake for an extra 15-20 minutes until potatoes are golden brown and bubbly. Add the grated cheese on top of potatoes and bake for 3 minutes more or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.