Thursday, July 31, 2014

Favorite Summer Recipes, Part I

Like most people, we tend to use the grill for most of our dinners during the summer. However, there are some nights when I do cook dinner in the kitchen and, on those nights, I like to cook something that is light, simple, and - most importantly - doesn't require the use of my oven. 

I found this recipe in the May 2014 edition of Cooking Light and it was an instant hit with our family. It is hearty enough for dinner but won't leave you with that "oh, my gosh, I am stuffed!" feeling. Even if you eat three bowls of it. I served with a green salad. 

Chicken, Tortellini, and Spinach Soup with Pesto

Cooking Light MAY 2014
Yield: Serves 6 (serving size: 1 cup)


  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups unsalted chicken stock
  • 1 (9-ounce) package whole-wheat cheese tortellini
  • 1 (5-ounce) package spinach
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup diced seeded tomato
  • 1/4 cup refrigerated pesto 


1. Heat a Dutch oven over high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add chicken; cook 4 minutes, browning on all sides. Add garlic; cook 30 seconds. Add stock; bring to a boil. Add tortellini; reduce heat to medium, and simmer 6 minutes or until tortellini are done. Stir in spinach, salt, and pepper. Divide soup among 6 bowls; top evenly with tomato and pesto.

And, of course I made some changes to the recipe! I made fresh pesto (using a lot of that basil from my garden), a fresh tomato, and freshly grated Parmesan cheese. I put the pesto, chopped tomatoes, and grated cheese in small bowls on the table so each person could add what they liked and in the amount they preferred. The kids like spinach so I tripled the amount of spinach that the recipe called for. I used chicken breasts instead of the boneless chicken thighs but only because that is what I had on hand.

Have a great day!

No comments: