Wednesday, April 18, 2007

WFMW: Dinner in 10 -- Enjoying a QUICK meal!

Works for Me Wednesday is brought to you by the lovely Shannon at Rocks in my Dryer. Head on over there for tons of other awesome tips!

For many of you that know me well, and I mean well, WELL ... you know that I absolutely LOVE to cook (that's an understatement). My mother is part Peruvian, part Italian, and when she was growing up, her Italian grandparents lived with her family, imparting a rich, Italian heritage ... including, of course, delicious family recipes and an appreciation for fine food. Every Sunday, they would gather in the kitchen to prepare sheets of pasta, fresh ravioli (my mom's job was to place the ravioli stuffing on the sheets of pasta, and then cut them out), and other delicious gourmet foods for the traditional Sunday family meal.

And, since many of you DO know me well, then you know that free time in my house is practically laughable, causing a lot of kinks in my gourmet plans, which in turn, translates to a lot of short cuts for dinner/meal preparations. And, just to add another kink to my culinary infatuation ... my husband loves to cook, too. Which has actually been quite a blessing. He, in fact, (as I am) is an advocate of strictly fresh food ingredients and preparation, and loves fine food, which is why the following discovery took me completely by surprise.

You see ... when our son was born, our lives were turned upside down. No longer could we spend hours in the kitchen to prepare a fabulous gourmet meal that was consumed along the lines of, oh... 8:00 p.m. -- because now, we had a little mouth to feed, and he demanded dinner around 5:30. We were thrown into the "what can we make for dinner -- FAST" mode on a daily basis(except weekends), and we found that if we had an evening commitment (which, trust me ... is RARE), dinner had to be prepared faster than speed lightening, and neither one of us really cared for those frozen pre-packaged meals where you "just add chicken" and voila -- Asian stir-fried rice and veggies (or something like that). Yuck.

In comes my husband's "neat discovery" -- New, Bertolli Complete Skillet Meals. Now, I must say that we were both VERY skeptical about this, but we tried it, and found that we absolutely LOVE them. Well, most of them. The one I don't care for is the Chicken Parmigiana and Penne, because the "breaded chicken" reminds me of just plain ol' chicken tenders. They have found a way to freeze the sauces in "pellets," and still keep the pasta firm and tasty. Each meal is finished in about 10 minutes, which is AWESOME for a meal that tastes like it took 30 or more minutes.

My absolute FAVORITE is Chicken Florentine & Farfalle -- we added about 1/4 bag of fresh baby spinach leaves to the skillet (because we CAN'T leave well enough alone), and topped it with freshly grated cheese, and it was near perfect! The pasta is cooked in a way that once thawed, is not mushy, but tender and firm.

Here's a list of the Complete Skillet Dinners for two, AND a list of their new Pasta Dishes:

Chicken alla Vodka & Farfalle
Chicken Parmigiana & Penne
Roasted Chicken & Linguine
Chicken Florentine & Farfalle
Grilled Chicken Alfredo
Giagantoni in a Tomato, Romano & Ricotta Cheese Sauce (durum wheat semolina pasta)
Orecchiette with Broccoli in a Garlic & Olive Oil Sauce (durum wheat pasta)
Gnocchi in a Tomato Mozzarella Sauce (potato and flour dumplings)
Spinach & Egg Fettuccine in a Five Cheese Sauce

There you have it! Dinner in 10 -- 10 minutes, that is!

You can CLICK HERE to get a coupon.


Justice Fergie said...

I love Bertolli frozen dinners too! They are definitely tasty. My only complaint is that they don't come in Family portions. The dinner for 2 size is too small for us and so we end up buying at least 2 and that can get pricey. But other than that, a great meal option.

Love your blog!

Karen said...

The grilled chicken alfredo is my personal favorite. Unfortunately, it is too many WW points for me. :(

My Trendy Tykes said...

I have never tried those! Thanks for the heads up.


Anonymous said...

I haven't tried Bertolli, but Contessa'a Chicken Fried Rive is wonderful and cooks in about ten minutes, too.

I'll look for Bertolli!

kpjara said...

I love these meals! We haven't tried them all but are trying a couple a month.

Thanks for the positive review!

Liza on Maui said...

Oh I love this tip being a working mom, I'm always on the rush when I cook. These will be a great addition to my list of dinners!

AND THANK YOU so much for your comment on my blog. I didn't know that the comment for that WFMW post was off - thanks for informing me - I turned it on now.

And yes, I replied to your comment there in case you're interested to know :)

Thanks again!

Jessica said...

I love Bertolli! So fast and simple! It's on sale this week at Kroger! It is already on my shopping list! Great tip!

Lisa @ The Preacher's Wife said...

I've always wondered if this stuff was good...I'll try!!

I love your blog!

Sandy said...

Mmm, yum! I am going to have to try those frozen dinners out! Always love reading your posts ...Sandy (in Ireland!)

Laurel said...

these are yummy! thanks for the coupon... i posted my pie crust recipe for you!

Overwhelmed! said...

Oh, I've never tried these before but I want to!

Thanks for sharing. :)

Anonymous said...

This is such a good blog. I'll add you to my blogroll whether you like it or not!

We were married in June 1990, too. What date?