Farfalle with Crispy Prosciutto and Peas

I was, admittedly, overwhelmed by December.  I was so overwhelmed by the enormity of it that…get this…I often cooked dinner and didn’t take pictures.  What?!?!  I know.  The first time I made this, in December, my family went nuts over it.  They enjoyed it so much that I immediately regretted my laziness and wished I’d taken out my camera.  When my family found out that I didn’t take pictures of the process to share with you, they were all pretty excited…because it meant they got to have it again in the very near future.

Chicken Parmesan Zucchini Boats

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One dinner my kids can always agree on not pouting over is Chicken Parmesan.  Who doesn’t love Chicken Parmesan?  Breaded chicken, rich tomato sauce, pasta, and cheese?  It’s a carb lovers dream.  When I saw these little stuffed zucchini boats, though, filled with all of the flavors of our favorite chicken parm but in a slightly-less-calorie-packed frame, I decided to give it a whirl.  After all, this time of year, I’m saving all of my calorie splurges for cookies and party food.  Dinner needs to keep me satisfied, but in the month of many splurges, I really don’t need it to weigh me down.

Simple Skillet Lasagna

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I love lasagna, but it’s not something I make often.  It can be time consuming, depending on the recipe, and unless I have a large chunk of time to play around with in the kitchen (which doesn’t happen often), it’s just not on my recipe radar.

This version, however, changed all of that.

This Skillet Lasagna is so good that two days later, I’m still thinking about how good it was.  The more I ate, the more I enjoyed it, and I can safely say that THIS lasagna will be making multiple appearances at our dinner table.  It’s simple, perfect, delicious comfort food, and just the right thing as the air starts to crisp up and the leaves begin to turn.

Chicken Florentine Bundles

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It isn’t often around here that we have the same thing for dinner two weeks in a row.  But, after I made these awesome little Chicken Florentine Bundles one night, and watched my family devour them in a matter of minutes, I knew I was onto something.  So, on another crazy night the following week, I made them again. And they devoured them again. And nobody complained. Children smiled, angels sang, and all was right with the world.

OK, maybe it wasn’t that dramatic, but you know what I mean. It’s good stuff all around.

Lemon Garlic Chicken Pasta with Broccoli

Garlic Lemon Chicken Pasta with Broccoli - Chew Nibble Nosh

Some of the best recipes don’t come from cookbooks, or generation after generation of family, time-tested tweaks.  Sometimes, the recipes on the back of a grocery store package are pretty darn good.  (Toll House cookies, anyone?)  This recipe, for our family, quickly became one of those back-of-the-box favorites after I found it on a box of pasta that I’d grabbed at Publix when we lived in Georgia.  I’ve tweaked it a bit from the original, but the ease, simplicity and taste of the one I found on the back of the box are still front and center.  It’s an easy weeknight meal, and perfect for those first few days back at school when everyone is trying to get back in the swing of a routine.

Chicken Bolognese with Crispy Oregano

Chicken Bolognese with Crispy Oregano - Chew Nibble Nosh

If you were to ask me what my all time favorite pasta sauce is, I would answer, without hesitation, that it is THIS Bolognese sauce.  I posted that recipe a few years ago, and things haven’t changed.  It’s still my all time favorite.

That said, it’s a time-consuming sauce.  One that’s meant for a day when I have time to spend in the kitchen.  On days when I don’t have time to spend in the kitchen, this lightened up, chicken-based Bolognese sauce is a fantastic alternative.  It came together in minutes, and my family devoured it in just a few as well.  It’s fresh and light, and great for a night when you’re craving comfort food, but not so much craving the work involved.

Orecchiette Carbonara with Brussels Sprouts

Orecchiette Carbonara with Brussels Sprouts - Chew Nibble Nosh 5

This is my new favorite comfort food meal for 2016.

It combines one of my favorite cozy Italian dishes, creamy Carbonara pasta, with my favorite winter veggie.  It comes together quickly, and simply, and just a few fresh, honest ingredients pack a whole lot of flavor.  In fact, the first time I made it, Avery (my youngest, and not my most adventurous eater…but she’s trying) commented that “Wow, the noodles give the brussels sprouts such great flavor!”  Ha!  Well, no, probably the other way around, but whatever works in her little head to get her to eat her veggies is fine by me.  That’s something she wouldn’t have done last winter.  My family enjoyed it so much that I’ve made it twice in the past few weeks, and we can’t get enough of it!

Lasagna Soup

Lasagna Soup - Chew Nibble Nosh .

This winter has been so weird.  Balmy on Christmas, then a three-day monsoon and flooded roads, and now we’ve finally reached “kind of chilly”.  This soup is the perfect thing for those crummy days when all you want to do is snuggle under a blanket, read a good book, and watch the weather do strange things.  It takes all of the flavors I love from my favorite lasagna recipe and puts them right into the middle of a creamy, cozy, bowl of soup.

Chili Mac and Cheese

Chili Mac and Cheese - Chew Nibble Nosh

I really don’t know what to call this.  It’s not quite a soup, isn’t really a chili, not exactly a stew.  What I do know is, it’s really tasty and a great way to warm up on a crazy windy day like today.  (I sent my dog outside a little while ago, and I was unsure if I’d get him back.  It’s that windy.)

This one pot meal is super simple to throw together, and my entire family really enjoyed it.  It’s definitely a great one to keep pantry staples on hand for, to throw together on a busy night when you’ve, quite honestly, forgotten about feeding anyone dinner until it’s…ahem…time for dinner.

Penne alla Emiliana – Dinner at Indy’s Sangiovese Ristorante

Penne alla Emiliana - Chew Nibble Nosh

I’m tough to please when it comes to Italian food.  My dad’s side of the family is Italian, so I was lucky to grow up in a kitchen where tomatoes, basil, and garlic were a way of life.  I often find that Italian restaurants don’t exactly live up to my expectations.

So, imagine how excited I was when I found, and devoured, one of the best Italian meals I’ve ever had right here in Indy!  I was so eager to try out Sangiovese Ristorante’s new location.  I’d heard that they’d moved from their former location into the beautiful, new Ironworks building on 86th street.