September 22, 2011

Dinner Winners

I thought I’d share a recipe or two, since I’ve been cooking more lately.  Thanks, in part, to the freezer meals I’ve posted about before.

The first one is Pesto Chicken Stuffed Shells from What’s Cookin Chicago?  I found Joelen’s site via what else?  Pinterest!  Check it out, because she has tons of freezer-friendly recipes, this one included!  At first, I was a little skeptical of the recipe, given that it has cream cheese in it.  I mean, I love cream cheese, don’t get me wrong (I may or may not be known to eat it with a spoon on occasion), but it seemed like it might be a little heavy for the shells.  I considered substituting ricotta cheese, but I decided to give it a try with the cream cheese.  And I’m so glad I did.  Y’all.  These are SO good!!  Seriously, Lee and I both loved them!  Here is the recipe if you don’t want to click through to her website:

Pesto Stuffed Chicken Shells

12-16 jumbo pasta shells
4oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese + 1/4 cup for topping
3 tablespoons prepared pesto (homemade or store bought)
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste

In a large pot over high heat, boil water and prepare pasta shells as directed on package. Cook pasta shells only until al dente. The pasta will finish cooking when the dish is baked. Drain the pasta shells and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients, except the 1/4 cup of cheese for the topping. Fill the pasta shells with the filling and place in a baking dish.  Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of cheese over filled shells.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake shells uncovered for 30 minutes or until shells are bubbling hot and cheese melts.

To Freeze - Prepare as directed but place filled shells in an oven- and freezer-proof baking dish. Top with remaining 1/4 cup of cheese over filled shells, cover and freeze. When ready to prepare, defrost. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake shells uncovered for 35-40 minutes or until shells are bubbling hot and cheese melts.

I doubled this recipe, and baked half that same night, and froze the other half.  They were just as good from frozen as they were freshly made!  We did add tomato sauce to ours, and they were a little dry without it.  Overall, this is something that is now on regular rotation at our house!

This next recipe isn’t dinner, but it is definitely a winner.  Another Pinterest lovely.  Although fall is just around the corner, and you might not really have use for a frozen drink recipe, you should still go ahead and bookmark this just in case we get one of those “surprise it’s not fall yet!” days that we usually have around here.

Frozen Strawberry Mojito

Frozen Mojito

1 can frozen limeade

1/2 of the limeade can of rum

2 cups frozen strawberries

a muddled mixture of a few leaves of fresh mint and the pulp of two limes

Throw everything in the blender and give it a whirl.

This was amazingly delicious!  It could have used a touch of sugar, but I didn’t add any and still consumed most (okay, basically all) of this on my own, over 2 nights.



katie@tulsadetails said...

Oh yay! Definitely trying both of these!!!

Sweet Simplicity said...

I think I have that pasta dish pinned on pinterest. I probably found it through your pins. I definitely want to try it!

Katie @ Modern-Day Family said...

mmmm that mojito looks DELISH! I'm going to have to try that