Blackened Chicken with Vegetable Pasta

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Tonight for dinner I made blackened chicken with a vegetable pasta. To make the pasta I took a few vegetables that I had in the fridge and sauteed them. I cooked some pasta and when it was done I tossed it with the vegetables. I’ve been working on this blackened chicken recipe for a while now, the rub works both with this method of cooking it and with grilling the chicken. I personally prefer the grilled blackened chicken but it was storming quite heavily today so I made it in a cask Iron skillet today. The rub delivers a good flavor and a subtle heat that doesn’t overpower the chicken. Enjoy!

Blackened Chicken

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Grilled Honey BBQ Chicken Wings with Summer Spaghetti

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With the nice weather we have been having I wanted to make use of the grill. This dinner combines one old favorite and one new favorite dish. My mom has made Summer Spaghetti my whole life and still makes it better than I have ever been able to. It is a great side dish to have throughout the summer. The honey bbq chicken wings have quickly become a summer favorite with my family. By cooking the wings over indirect heat they come out moist and tender and are healthier than frying chicken wings. The wings turn out best if you can marinate them overnight in hot sauce. Also cutting the wings into the drumstick and wing section can be time consuming. Get out there and grill and enjoy these two recipes!

Grilled Honey BBQ Chicken Wings

Summer Spaghetti

Shrimp Fra Diavolo

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This is a classic Italian seafood recipe. I modeled this sauce after the base of the vodka cream sauce. The first few steps are just the same. You add the onion to pan; saute 4 minutes or until tender. Add Garlic and saute an additional 30 seconds.

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Then you add 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper, and wine and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer until the wine is reduced by about half.

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Then stir in 1 teaspoon salt, shellfish stock, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer 8 minutes.

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Finally add Shrimp and cover sauce. Cook shrimp for 5-6 minutes or until done. By cooking the shrimp in the sauce you infuse more shrimp flavor into it.

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Pour sauce and shrimp over cooked paste and garnish with basil. This is an easy simple recipe so give it a try. Enjoy!

Stout Macaroni and Cheese

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For Some reason I have been experimenting with cooking with beer a lot recently. I wanted to make mac and cheese and saw a recipe that used hot turkey sausage and Guinness in mac and cheese and adapted some of what they did for this dish. A warning in advance, while this recipe is delicious it does not taste like your traditional mac and cheese. Depending on how hot the sausage is that you use it could have some heat to it. Also the stout gives this dish a very distinctive finish. I will walk you through the recipe in this post, you can find the full recipe by clicking on the link at the bottom of the page.

Heat a large saucepan over high heat, add oil and swirl to coat pan then reduce heat to medium. Remove casings sausages and add sausage and onion to pan. Cook for 6 min, stirring to crumble up sausage.

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Add flour, salt, and pepper. Stir and cook for an additional minute.

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Add beer and bring to a boil. Cook mixture for 3 min until thick and bubbly, stirring continuously.

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Remove from heat and add cheddar, Velveeta, and milk; stir until smooth. Then add pasta and mix in.

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Divide mixture evenly among 4 ceramic gratin dishes sprinkle with panko bread crumbs and bake at 450 for 10 min. You could also put mac and cheese in a casserole dish and serve family style, timing will remain the same. Enjoy and find the full recipe below.

Stout Macaroni and Cheese

Penne Pasta in a Vodka Cream Sauce

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Tonight I am posting my signature recipe. I have been making this dish for 4 years now and have tweaked it many times to get it to where it is now. The sauce is surprisingly healthy for a vodka cream sauce and only uses 1/2 cup of heavy cream. The addition of the crushed red pepper gives the sauce a subtle heat. You can modify the protein you want to use in this dish. I tend to make it with crab meat. If you use crab meat add it at the end right before you mix the sauce with the pasta. If you use an Italian ham like pancetta or prosciutto saute it with the onions in the beginning to get their flavor infused throughout the sauce. I highly recommend trying this dish. Like I said at the start of this entry this is my go to signature dish and is very special to me, I make it the night before I have a big race or other athletic event. I hope you enjoy it!

UPDATE: I added step by step pictures to go along with the recipe.

Penne Pasta in a Vodka Cream Sauce