Monday, October 17, 2011

Pumpkin, pumpkin... who wants some pumpkin?!?!

Well, it is officially fall. That means one thing: PUMPKIN GALORE! Farmer's markets are stocked with all sorts of squashes, pumpkins, vegetables, and fruits from the fall harvest. The air is crisp, and everyone is craving the best this season has to offer. Lately, I seem to want to put pumpkin puree in just about anything I can get my hands on. SO, for dinner tonight, all I had was some defrosted chicken breasts, a bag of spinach, and naturally, some pumpkin puree in a can. Add some goat cheese, pine nuts, and some spice and TA-DA, the best fall dinner I have had in quite some time. This dish actually came out better than I expected, and I couldn't resist sharing it. If you don't have any pumpkin puree in your pantry, do yourself a solid and get a couple of cans. It will NOT go to waste. You can put this jar of amazing-ness in just about anything, from pasta & risotto to baked goods and now, chicken!! Try this recipe- not only is it healthy, but it is quick, easy & cheap! Is there anything better?

Spicy Pumpkin Chicken Breasts with sauteed Spinach


4-5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 large bag of spinach (uncooked, or 1 box of frozen spinach, defrosted and drained)
1/2 white onion, roughly diced
4 oz pumpkin puree
1/2 cup red wine, whatever you have left over in your apt will do just fine,
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes, more or less depending on your spice preference
olive oil
salt & pepper
chili powder
balsamic vinegar
lemon juice
pine nuts, for garnish
goat cheese, for garnish

First, heat up a large sautee pan in medium-high heat with some olive oil. Dice the onions, then drop then in the oil when the pan is hot. Sprinkle with salt & red pepper flakes, let them sauté until they're soft and cook down (3-5 minutes). Meanwhile, season your chicken breasts with salt, pepper, and chili powder. Add to the sautee pan and reduce heat to medium-low. Add the red wine, and let cook down for 1-2 minutes. Next, add the pumpkin pie puree and cover. Let cook for 10 minutes, flip the breasts and cook 10 minutes more or until the breasts are cooked all the way through (become firm to the touch).

As the chicken is cooking, add a drizzle of olive oil to a large pot and heat on medium. Then, add the spinach. Drizzle with 2 tbsps of balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper and a splash of lemon juice. Cover and let the greens cook down, these puppies wilt fast and fiercely. Let the chicken and spinach cool. When all is finished, plate it up, sprinkle with toasted pine nuts and goat cheese (however much you like, I prefer a lot of cheese personally, you only live once. and it isn't worth living without goat cheese).


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