A Simple Dinner:  BAKED ATLANTIC COD IN A PESTO – MARINARA SAUCE AND SPRINKLED WITH BASIL & PINE NUTS

A gourmet taste, but quickly prepared. . .

For 2:

–cod (Atlantic, wild, size of 2 decks of cards, one-half pound)

–pesto (basil variety, 1 tablespoon stirred into 2 tablespoons of clam juice)

–marinara sauce (bottled; I used Ragu, “Mama’s garden variety”; one-quarter cup)

–basil (dried, bottled, 1 teaspoon)

–pine nuts (packaged, 3 tablespoons)

–salt and pepper

–extra virgin olive oil

1 – Place the cod in a covered baking dish.  Season with salt and pepper.  Spoon marinara sauce on top.  Set aside.

2 – Stir together the basil pesto and clam juice.  Then spoon atop the cod.  Finish with basil, pine nuts, and extra virgin olive oil to taste.

3 – Microwave the cod for 6 minutes on high.

3 – Serve the cod hot, with sauce.

–recipe original.

ORGANIC CHICKEN TENDERS WRAPPED IN CRISPY PANKO CRUMBS SEASONED WITH BASIL AND TOPPED WITH BABY BELLA MUSHROOMS & GREEN ONIONS IN A SAUCE OF MARSALA WINE – BASIL PESTO – GOLDEN RAISINS

For 4:

–6 organic chicken tenderloins

–panko crumbs (crispy, plain, packaged, one-third cup)

–basil (dried, 1 teaspoon, bottled)

–baby bella mushrooms (chopped, fresh, 3 or 4)

–green onions (3 stalks, chopped, fresh)

–marsala wine (cooking wine, one-quarter cup)

–basil pesto (bottled, 2 tablespoons)

–golden raisins (one-quarter cup, packaged)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

1 – Place the basil pesto in a small mixing bowl.  Add marsala wine slowly, stirring constantly.  Then pour sauce into a covered baking dish.  Add raisins.  Stir.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.

2 – Place the chicken in a plastic bag.  Season with salt, pepper, and basil.  Add olive oil to coat.  Pour in panko breadcrumbs.  Shake well.  Then place chicken in the sauce.  Top with mushrooms and green onions.  Finish with a few drops of olive oil.

3 – Microwave on high for 7 and one-half minutes.  When finished, test a center piece for doneness.  If not cooked, microwave for 1 minute more.

4 – Serve the chicken and sauce hot.

–chicken adapted from Edward Giobbi’s Eat Right, Eat Well—the Italian Way.

COD BASIL PESTO WITH SAUCE OF BASIL PESTO – FRESH CHOPPED TOMATO – MINCED GARLIC – BASIL – OLIVE OIL ATOP JASMINE RICE

For 4:

–cod (size of 4 decks of cards, 1 pound)

–basil pesto (bottled, 2 tablespoons with one-eighth cup of water added, stir well)

–tomato (fresh, medium, chopped)

–minced garlic (1 tablespoon, bottled)

–basil (dried, 1 teaspoon; or fresh, 2 tablespoons minced)

–olive oil (2 tablespoons, bottled)

–salt and pepper

–jasmine rice (follow package instructions for microwaving; brands differ)

1 – Place the basil pesto (with water, stirred), tomato, minced garlic, and olive oil in a small mixing bowl.  Stir gently.  Set aside.

2 – Place the cod in a covered baking dish.  Season with salt and pepper.  Pour the sauce over the top.

3 – Microwave on high for 8 minutes.  Cod is ready when it begins to break apart.

4 – Serve the cod pesto with sauce hot, atop jasmine rice.

–cod inspired by C. Mabry, chef.

BASIL CHICKEN SPRINKLED WITH BREADCRUMBS & IN BROTH AND ACCOMPANIED BY COLD BASIL PESTO SALSA WITH FRESH TOMATO – CHOPPED ONION – PARSLEY – EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL

For 4:

–6 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–basil (bottled, 1 tablespoon)

–breadcrumbs (plain, boxed, one-quarter cup)

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium, one-eighth cup)

–olive oil

–basil pesto (bottled, 2 tablespoons)

–tomato (fresh, 1, medium, chopped)

–onion (one-half, small, chopped)

–parsley (fresh, 1 handful, chopped)

–extra virgin olive oil (2 tablespoons)

–salt and pepper

–extra virgin olive oil

1 – Place the chicken in a covered baking dish with the broth.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive.  Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top.  Follow with basil on top.  Set aside.

2 – Place the basil pesto, tomato, onion, parsley, and extra virgin olive oil in a small mixing bowl.  Season with salt and pepper (to taste).  Stir well.  Keep in the refrigerator until time for dinner.

3 – Microwave the chicken for 8 minutes on high.

4 – Serve the chicken hot, with the pesto salsa beside it on the plate.

–recipes original.

BAKED COD TOPPED WITH BASIL PESTO – CHOPPED TOMATO – FETA CHEESE

-cod (size of 4 decks of cards, 1 pound)

–basil pesto (in a jar)

–basil (bottled)

–tomato (1, fresh, small, chopped)

–feta cheese (packaged, crumbled)

–clam juice (bottled)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

1 – Place the cod in a covered baking dish with a very little amount of clam juice.  Season with salt, pepper, basil, and olive oil.  Set aside.

2 – Chop 1 small tomato, and then season with salt, pepper, and basil.  Place in a small mixing bowl.  Add 2 tablespoons of basil pesto and 2 tablespoons of crumbled feta cheese to the bowl.  Stir gently.  Then place atop the cod.  Finish with a few drops of olive oil, if desired.

3 – Microwave on high for 9 minutes.

4 – Serve the cod and sauce hot, atop pasta or couscous (recipes, see the search box on this blog).

–cod inspired by a dinner of my brother-in-law and sister-in-law.

CHICKEN ROLLED IN BREADCRUMBS WITH ASPARAGUS – BAY LEAVES – GREEN ONIONS IN BRANDY SAUCE / ITALIAN MINESTRONE SOUP SEASONED WITH BASIL PESTO

For 4:

–6 chicken tenderloins or breast strips

–breadcrumbs (plain, boxed)

–asparagus (1 small handful, fresh)

–bay leaves (2, dried)

–green onions (3 stalks, sliced)

–brandy (purchase a small, inexpensive bottle)

–salt and pepper

–olive oil

–basil pesto (bottled, 2 heaping tablespoons)

–mixed vegetables (frozen package)

–chicken broth (non-fat, low sodium)

–onion (one-half, sliced)

1 – Place a package of mixed vegetables in a slow cooker.  Add chicken broth to cover.  Then add one-half sliced onion and 2 heaping tablespoons of basil pesto.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Place slow cooker on low, and cook for 5 and one-half hours.  When finished, place setting on warm until time for dinner.

2 – Cut off ends of the asparagus, and then cut into 1 – inch pieces.  Place in a covered baking dish with a little brandy.  Add more water to dilute brandy.  Add 3 chopped stalks of green onions and 2 bay leaves.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 3 minutes.

3 – Place the chicken in a plastic bag.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Add a small amount of plain breadcrumbs.  Shake well.

4 – Add the chicken to the asparagus and green onions.  Season with salt, pepper, and olive oil.  Microwave on high for 7 and one-half minutes.

5 – Serve the soup as a first course.  Then serve the chicken hot, with vegetables of your choice.

–soup and chicken adapted from Edward Giobbi’s Eat Right, Eat Well—the Italian Way.