Wednesday, January 26, 2011

What I Love Wednesday

It's Wednesday again and time for me to acknowledge that special thing in my kitchen that just really has made life easier for me this week.  

Last week I loved on my pots & pans, and while I still love them dearly, this week they have been outshone. Move aside Rachael Rays...   what I love this Wednesday is my friend Sairaina! (Here she is in my kitchen so it TOTALLY counts.)

Isn't she just adorable?!  Definitely my favorite thing in my kitchen!!
Sairaina and I go WAYYYYY back, but over the last couple months she's become a great cooking cohort also.  Every other week we get together and prepare a meal together (this sounds better than I stand around telling her what to do and watching her cook for me).

Sairaina is an amazingly talented person.  She's an incredible musician, singer, songwriter, worshiper.  She's one of my closest friends, a great co-worker, a fantastic Kids Camp counselor (go Super-raina go!) and she's one of the most photogenic people I've ever encountered.  She's also kind, and generous, and lovely, and gracious, and giving and sweet, and funny and gorgeous and I just love her to pieces... and for some crazy reason she loves me too and we enjoy our quality time together in my kitchen!

She'll tell you she needs the cooking lessons.  I'm here to tell you she's lying - she certainly doesn't need my help, but I sure like cooking alongside her and so I play along like I know something she doesn't when it comes to culinary skills, and she pretends I'm actually teaching her something and we have a great time.  Oh, and then we eat our creation!  It's really a win-win!

Last night she came over and we cooked up one of my quick easy favorite meals.  Spinach, Tomato & Feta over Penne pasta with garlic & herb chicken.  (and then I roasted some acorn squash too because I had them and needed to use them.)

Hello deliciousness... visit again soon!

It's a very easy recipe and so flavor-full!  It's a favorite around our household, even with Hayden who told me it was "mmmmm tasty!"

"Sairaina" action figure not included with most kitchens
Here's what you need: 

Chicken, EVOO, onion, garlic, spinach, tomatoes (I used cherubs, but you could use any kind diced), feta cheese and penne pasta.  The Sairaina is optional, but I highly recommend her!

Start by boiling some water in a big stock pot.  Salt it good and add your penne pasta, cooking it al dente.  Drain and set aside.

 In a saute pan heat some olive oil over medium heat.  Season your chicken (I used a roasted garlic & herb blend) and cook 'em on up.

In a skillet, heat some olive oil and saute a chopped onion for a couple minutes until it starts turning translucent. 

Add some minced garlic (I used three cloves) and stir around another minute.

Dump in a whole bag of baby spinach.  It will look like a lot... do not fear, that stuff wilts down SERIOUSLY!  Cover with a lid, or just stir around in the heat for a few minutes.

See, totally wilted. 

Add your pretty tomatoes next... don't they add such a lovely color?  Oh I'm getting hungry all over again just staring at this. 

Then add your cheese (I used 2/3 of the container) and allow the cheese to melt for a few more minutes.

Add your pasta back in and toss around.  Serve with chicken...or not, whatever floats your boat!

So thank you Sairaina!  Thank you for coming over, and cooking with me, and making such a delicious dinner.  You're my favorite thing in my kitchen - and an obvious choice for what I love Wednesday. (and everyday!)


  1. That sounds so yum! How is it that I've never had this at your house before? And Sairaina has? WHATEVA! Just kidding :) You're a cutie Sairaina! (you to Kel in your belted ruffle top... of course the first thing I noticed :)

  2. I will be making this tonight. Thank you for making me hungry at 8.30am !!!!

  3. The dish looks delicious and the company couldn't get any better! :)

  4. You know what? This looks so good I actually had a dream about it the other night. No kidding.