Rainy Day Comfort

It has been raining for 3 days straight and there doesn’t seem to be reprieve in the near future. What is it about dreary, cold weather that tends to inspire a bit of comfort food? Pasta almost always fits the bill, and is a good compliment to most any protein – chicken, beef, veal, or pork. While I hope to complete a post very soon for homemade pasta, there’s nothing wrong with simplifying your menu with a store bought fresh pasta. For this recipe, I decided on a spinach and ricotta ravioli from Giovanni Rana along with their marinara sauce to pair with chicken tenderloins.

Baked Chicken & Ravs

Baked Chicken & Ravioli

Serves 3-4

3/4 lb. chicken tenderloins
1-2 tsp. Alpine Touch seasoning
1/2 tsp. pepper
1-2 tsp. Divine Inspired seasoning

10-oz. package Giovanni Rana Spinach & Ricotta Ravioli
15-oz. container Giovanni Rana Marinara Sauce

3 tbls. cream cheese, cubed
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 tsp. dried parsley

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Inspiration from the Refrigerator

I’m sure you’re familiar with one of the most frequent family questions: What’s for dinner, mom?  Since our kids don’t live at home anymore, I guess it was just my head talking out loud. On my way out the door for work, I stopped by the freezer and hoped it would inspire some creativity for a necessary task… frozen marinara sauce and ground beef seemed like a pretty easy option, so I set them in the sink to do their magic.

Even those of us who do love to cook, aren’t motivated every single day especially if proper meal planning for the week has not been done, so spaghetti was about all I seemed to have energy to make, especially without a trip to the grocery store. All of a sudden, lasagna came to mind. I started pulling ingredients out of the refrigerator — onion, tomatoes, several types of cheeses, just a bit of spinach, only a cup of ricotta cheese that was desperate to be turned into something yummy,  but here’s some Greek yogurt, oh – and there’s some pepperoni and summer sausage.

After checking a few lasagna recipes to make sure I hadn’t lost my mind, I decided, I can make this work! I grabbed a notepad and a pen and started writing down each ingredient as I moved forward. After all, I have never made lasagna with pepperoni, spinach or Greek yogurt – but I’m on a mission to use what I have and make it work. And voila! Read More