Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Parmesan-crusted Chicken and Sauteed Asparagus over Lemon-garlic Penne Pasta

This meal was a huge success. I adapted the recipe from The Recipe Critic, so I want to give her full credit. Click on the link to see her original, delicious recipe.


  • 2 chicken breasts, butterflied and pounded
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup italian bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup panko
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • Salt and pepper

  • 8 ounces penne pasta 
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper

  • One bunch asparagus, trimmed
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • Garlic salt



Turn your oven to warm. Add flour to a medium, flat dish (like a cake or pie pan). Whisk eggs in a different, medium-sized flat dish. Mix panko breadcrumbs, Italian breadcrumbs, parmesan, and salt and pepper in yet another medium-sized flat dish. Dredge each chicken breast—first in the flour, then egg, then breadcrumb/parmesan mixture. I deep fried mine using a Fry Baby, but you could pan fry them also. If deep frying, fry each piece for 4–5 minutes, until the internal temp reads 165. If pan frying, fry on each side for 3–4 minutes until the internal temp reaches 165. Keep chicken warm while you cook the rest by placing each piece of chicken on a wire wrack sitting inside a sheet pan. Put this pan in the oven on warm.


Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add asparagus. Sprinkle lightly with garlic salt. Cook until asparagus is bright green and tender. Remove from pan and set in a warm place.


While your chicken is cooking, cook the penne according to package instructions until al dente. To make the sauce, heat butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds to one minute. Add heavy cream, lemon juice, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, and salt and pepper. Once the sauce starts to thicken, add cooked pasta and toss.

Plate it all up, and enjoy!

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Drumsticks and Veggies on the Grill

It's summertime in Texas. For some crazy reason, that means we Texans venture outside into the sweltering heat, light a fire, and stand in front of it while we cook our food.

You can't beat the taste of real food cooked over coals, but if you do it during the Texas summer, you're pretty much guaranteed to need a shower after dinner.

On the menu: Grilled drumsticks, zucchini, mushrooms, and onions, and corn on the cob--served with roasted sweet potatoes and a simple salad.


  • 2 lbs chicken drumsticks (we buy them in bulk at Cotsco and freeze them)
  • Pre-shucked corn on the cob 
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 package Baby Bella mushrooms
  • 1/2 yellow onion
  • 1 sweet potato
  • Mixed salad greens
  • Tomato
  • Italian dressing (your favorite bottled, or make your own)
  • Olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp softened butter
  • Salt and pepper

  • Salad dressing: Olive oil, red wine vinegar, and salt and pepper 


Prepare charcoal or gas grill for medium heat.

Preheat oven to 400. 

Thaw and then marinate the drumsticks for a couple of hours in Italian dressing.

Slice zucchini crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces. Halve the mushrooms. Chop onion into large slices. Layer the pieces onto metal kabob skewers. Drizzle with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Rub each ear of corn with softened butter. Place on a sheet of aluminum foil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Wrap the foil around each ear of corn.

Wash sweet potato. Slice the sweet potato into 1/4 rounds. Place on a sheet pan. Brush each side with olive oil. Sprinkle each side with salt and pepper. Roast in preheated oven for 20 minutes or until softened.

Cook chicken drumsticks on the grill until the internal temp reaches 165. About halfway through the cooking process, add the corn and veggie skewers. Keep an eye on the veggies; they cook quickly!

While the food cooks on the grill (ideally you've sent someone out there to tend it so you don't get sweaty), prepare the salad. Dice the tomato. Add it to a large bowl of mixed salad greens. In a small bowl, whisk together 2 Tbsp olive oil, 1Tbsp red wine vinegar, and salt and pepper. 

Plate it all up, and enjoy!