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January 31, 2008

Chicken & Broccoli Pasta

Filed under: Chicken,main dish,pasta — Becky @ 7:28 pm
about 8-10 oz. pasta (any will work; I used linquini)
1 cup fresh broccoli, chopped
1/2 lb. fresh muchrooms, chopped
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken
1/2 c. milk
1 can cream of mushroom soup
3/4 c. parmesan cheese, grated
1 clove garlic, minced
2-3 fresh basil leaves, chopped
2 Tblsp. butter
black pepper, to taste

Cook pasta according to directions on box; for the last few minutes, add broccoli to water. Drain.
In large skillet, heat butter to saute’ mushrooms and garlic; add chicken, and cook until browned.
Add milk, soup, cheese,and pasta mixture to heat through. Add basil before serving, and pepper to taste.

(We had this for the first time this week, and it will definately grace our table frequently in the future! I think next time, I will try it with shrimp instead of chicken, and perhaps add scallions to it as well)


January 30, 2008

Cheesy Chicken Manicotti

Filed under: Uncategorized — Becky @ 7:55 pm


  • 16 ounces Ricotta cheese
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese (leave one cup set aside)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 1 jar (26-32 oz. size) spaghetti sauce or Marinara
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1/2 lbs cooked chicken breast, diced finely


  1. Prepare manicotti according to package directions.
  2. Drain.
  3. In medium bowl, combine chicken, eggs, ricotta,parsley, 2 cups of the mozzarella and half of the parmesan, mix well.
  4. Spoon chicken mixture into each manicotti shell.
  5. In 13 x 9-inch baking dish, spread 1 cup spaghetti/marinara sauce.
  6. Lay mancotti in rows in sauce.
  7. Spoon remaining sauce over mancotti.
  8. Top with remaining mozarella.
  9. Cover; bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Sprinkle with cheese.

One Door Away from Heaven

Filed under: Dark,Koontz — Becky @ 2:06 am

Dean Koontz virtually invented the cross-genre novel, and in One Door Away from Heaven he mixes an action thriller with post-X-Files alien paranoia to remarkable effect. Micky Bellsong is a young woman at a crisis point in her life, using a stay at her Aunt Geneva’s to sort things out. Then the precocious and deformed Leilani Klonk walks into her life, telling stories of her stepfather and drugged-up mother, who believe aliens will beam the girl into their mothership and heal her deformities before her 10th birthday. But tales of the stepfather’s vicious past, including his hand in several murders, leave Micky believing that a far more terrible fate awaits her friend. So when the parents take off with Leilani, Micky pursues. As is typical with a Koontz novel, nothing turns out to be what it seems, and the meticulously crafted plot tightens like a noose with every turn of the page. His characters are exceptionally drawn, driving the novel forward with realism and warmth. Micky is one of his more attractive young heroines, but the real star is Leilani, a mature young girl whose plucky nature and sparkling dialogue instantly make her Koontz’s most memorable creation. She embodies his belief that despite violence, pain, and suffering, there is always goodness to be found in every person and situation. Koontz has once again proven why he is one of the premier novelists of his generation. Jonathan Weir, Amazon.co.uk

I know..I said I like Dean Koontz for spine tingling terror (or something of the sort), but this; while not a “terror-ific” novel by any means, is quite possibly Koontz’s best ever. I laughed, I felt like crying, my heart raced and I breathed a sigh of relief at several points in the story.  I highly recommend this for anyone looking for a great read, scary or not.

Oh, and it did cause a little hair raising moment.

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