(71) Balsamic Grilled Vegetables

This is one of those recipes that will appear again and again in our house. If you own a grilling tray, you are set! If you don’t you ought to check one out. They sell for about $20 and are a great investment! We have something like this one below.

This recipe is really easy. There’s a little bit of chopping and a little bit of combining, but otherwise, it’s a “set it and forget it” kind of recipe! The best kind! 🙂 We used one of my favorite blends from Penzey’s – Florida Seasoned Pepper. It’s like lemon pepper but it has a kick of orange peel in it as well. It also happens to be good on fish. But that’s not what we’re here to talk about!! Veggies! These veggies, to be specific… aren’t they pretty! And they scream summer! Delish!

Balsamic Grilled Veggies

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried basil (or use 2 tsp fresh)
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme (or use 2 tsp fresh)
1/2 teaspoon Florida Seasoned Pepper (or you can use regular black pepper)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 pound thin asparagus, trimmed
1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips
1 large yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips

Combine all ingredients in a zip top bag. Marinate for a 30+ minutes, turning the bag occasionally to make sure all of the veggies get a good soak. Remove the vegetables from the marinade and save the liquid for later. Grill the vegetables over medium-high heat until they are tender (about 10 minutes). You can brush the veggies with the reserved liquid if your heart desires.

These vegetable are great straight off the grill, room temperature, or even cold! (I had them cold in a wrap with some hummus – excellent!) Enjoy!!!

(49) Pasta Carbonara with Asparagus

As I mentioned before, I have zero sense of taste/smell right now. I wish I could give an accurate review of this recipe, but I can’t! So I’m recording this for posterity sake and going to have to revisit this one at a later date! If anybody makes this, please let me know what you think! (sorry for such a worthless opener!)

Pasta Carbonara with Asparagus

Source: Cooking Light, MAY 1997
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups)

2 1/2 cups (1-inch) diagonally sliced trimmed asparagus
6 tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese, divided
1/4 cup skim milk
1/4 cup egg substitute
2 tablespoons chopped chives
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 ounces uncooked farfalle (bow tie pasta)
2 bacon slices
3/4 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
Freshly ground pepper
Chopped chives (optional)

Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan; add asparagus. Cook 3 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain; set aside.

Combine 2 tablespoons cheese, milk, egg substitute, 2 tablespoons chives, and salt in a small bowl; set aside.

Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain well; set aside.

Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Crumble bacon; set aside. Add onion and garlic to bacon drippings in pan; sauté 5 minutes or until tender. Remove from heat; stir in asparagus and bacon.

Combine pasta, milk mixture, and asparagus in a large bowl; toss well. Divide evenly among 4 shallow bowls; top each serving with 1 tablespoon cheese. Sprinkle with pepper; top with chives, if desired.

CALORIES 321 (17% from fat); FAT 6.2g (sat 2.8g,mono 2g,poly 0.8g); IRON 3.4mg; CHOLESTEROL 10mg; CALCIUM 188mg; CARBOHYDRATE 50.8g; SODIUM 437mg; PROTEIN 15.8g; FIBER 3.8g

(97) Thyme-Garlic Roasted Asparagus

I love oven roasted asparagus and really liked the idea of putting minced garlic underneath. It gave the asparagus a garlicky flavor but you don’t feel like you could breathe fire from it! I have 8.6 million spices in my cabinet, but for some reason, I was out of thyme! I used dried basil with no issues. Will repeat this one.

Thyme-Garlic Roasted Asparagus

Yield: 4 servings
Source: Lynda Bennett, Belvedere, California, Cooking Light, JUNE 2007

3 garlic cloves, minced
Cooking spray
1 pound asparagus, trimmed
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 400°.

Spread garlic in an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Arrange asparagus in an even layer over garlic; drizzle with oil. Combine thyme and salt; sprinkle evenly over asparagus. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes or until asparagus is crisp-tender, turning once.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 45 (24% from fat), Fat: 1.2g (sat 0.2g,mono 0.9g,poly 0.1g), Protein: 2.6g, Carbohydrate: 5.8g, Fiber: 2.6g, Cholesterol: 0.0mg, Iron: 0.6mg, Sodium: 146mg, Calcium: 31mg

(83) Beer-battered Asparagus with Garlic Aioli

Beer-battered Asparagus with Garlic Aioli

Let me tell you something – these were GREAT!!! The aioli was off the hook good (to quote Guy). We ended up putting it on our chicken sandwiches with dinner. YUM! I had a small dish to soak the asparagus in, so I used more like 4 cups of buttermilk. I think you should just adjust it to what you need. Make sure the asparagus is covered completely while soaking.

Source: Guy’s Big Bite (foodtv.com)
Yield: 12 servings (but this depends on your asparagus size)

1 bunch medium asparagus, ends trimmed
2 cups buttermilk
2 eggs, separated
3/4 cup beer, lager or pale ale
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 cups peanut oil
Sea salt
Garlic Aioli, recipe follows

In shallow pan, soak asparagus in buttermilk 12 to 24 hours. Remove from buttermilk, but do not rinse.

In a large bowl, combine well the egg yolks, beer, flour, cornmeal, salt, cayenne pepper and black pepper. In large deep sided pot, heat oil to 350 degrees F. Meanwhile, in a large clean bowl with an electric mixer, beat egg whites to stiff peaks. Gently fold beaten egg whites into batter mixture. Dip spears, 1 at a time into batter, then carefully lay in oil. Do not overcrowd pan. Fry in batches, if necessary. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes, turning the spears with tongs to ensure even cooking. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Sprinkle with sea salt, to taste. Serve immediately with Aioli.

(51) Rotini with Chicken, Asparagus, and Tomatoes

Another dinner winner! YUM! This recipe was as fast as they come and very flavorful. And holy cow, the serving size was BIG! Don’t skip the goat cheese, either. The creaminess is awesome!

Rotini with Chicken, Asparagus, and Tomatoes

Reminiscent of a pasta salad, this recipe coats rotini and colorful vegetables with a basil-flecked balsamic vinaigrette.

Yield: 4 servings
Source: Cooking Light Magazine, November 2007

8 ounces uncooked rotini (corkscrew pasta)
Cooking spray
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1/4-inch strips
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup (1-inch) slices asparagus
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
1/4 cup (1 ounce) crumbled goat cheese

Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken and asparagus to pan; sauté 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and garlic to pan; sauté 1 minute. Remove from heat. Stir in pasta, basil, vinegar, and oil. Arrange 2 cups pasta mixture on each of 4 plates; top each serving with 1 tablespoon cheese.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 419 (20% from fat), Fat: 9.5g (sat 3.2g,mono 4.1g,poly 1.6g), Protein: 33.9g, Carbohydrate: 48.5g, Fiber: 3.4g, Cholesterol: 70mg, Iron: 3.2mg, Sodium: 324mg, Calcium: 105mg

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