15-minute cheesy spinach & chicken pasta

15 minute spinach pasta with chicken, foodlets

THIS ONE’S A 3-BOWLER. At least for Phoebe, our 5-year-old. Okay, okay. I admit it. I also found myself eating at least another helping, standing next to the sink while I pretended to “clean the kitchen” after dinner. It’s just that kind of pasta dish. And there’s even better news: the recipe is so simple, and… 

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spinach wraps 2 ways for st. patrick’s day

Shamrock chips, spinach rollups Foodlets.com

WHO KNEW THE EASIEST WAYS TO RING IN ST. PATRICK’S DAY were found in a package of spinach wraps? I bought a simple bag of 6 sandwich wraps from the grocery store then tried two things today. The first was lunch. My preschoolers (ages 4 and 3) were surprisingly thrilled with their green roll-ups. “Ooooh,… 

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cheese ravioli with spinach and bacon

ravioli with spinach and bacon,  foodlets.com

SO, THERE WAS AN ICE STORM. One that I’ve never seen the likes of, though I don’t have a lot of experience in the extreme weather department. This one came on quickly and thoroughly. Overnight, every single tree in our part of North Carolina was neatly encased in ice. Then they started splitting, falling, and… 

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very green broccoli mac & cheese

broccoli mac & cheese, foodlets.com

YES I PUT BROCCOLI (AND SPINACH) IN THE MAC & CHEESE BUT HEAR ME OUT. When Estelle turned three she actually asked for this dish to be served for her birthday lunch with friends. Despite a pretty serious invasion of vegetables, this stuff is very tasty. Downright company-worthy. Especially when you’re two going on three.

a little shot of spinach, the best way to start dinner!

spinach soup for kids, foodlets

This is an idea straight from “French Kids Eat Everything“, and I love it. In her amazing memoir about moving to France with two picky eaters then watching the European culture transform their whole family, Karen Le Billon explains that many French households have a baby food maker handy, even if they don’t have a baby…. 

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super simple turkey pot pie (and yes, I cheated)

turkey pot pie

WHEN YOU HAVE A FRIDGE FULL OF TURKEY and a house full of guests, the best way to handle both is a big casserole of turkey pot pie, just like this one. It’s a new riff on the Barefoot Contessa’s chicken pot pie recipe we made over once (and still the number one recipe of… 

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spicy pasta with chicken, spinach and goat cheese

chicken, butternut squash pasta

I’M BREAKING A PRETTY BIG RULE HERE. The idea of making two meals, one for the kids and another for the adults, is just too exhausting for me to even consider on most days. But for our Halloween lunch, I decided to spare the moms those mummy turkey dogs. Instead we adapted a recipe from… 

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A little bit green for St. Patrick’s Day: better-for-you shortbread shamrock cookies

shamrock shortbread cookies

OUR KIDS HAVE BEEN MISBEHAVING. I’m sure this never happens at your house, but this has been one of those weeks. We’ve had a whining, crying, tantrum-throwing, Pull-Up-removing time of it for days now. But this morning when Paul and I mentioned working toward a picnic dinner at the playground tonight, as in, we only… 

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Easy update: Add a little chopped spinach to your next pot of rice

Spinach and rice on Foodlets.com

WE USUALLY EAT BROWN RICE, BUT NOT THIS TIME. My husband Paul loves the fluffier texture of white rice, and I love him, so for this dinner we used organic basmati rice. But the compromise didn’t end there: I also add added a bit of frozen spinach to the pot while it cooked. Voila, a… 

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Frittata with spinach, pancetta & ricotta (a Barefoot Contessa makeover)

spinach, peppers and pancetta fritatta

MY BIG INDULGENCE IN ITALY, other than one trip to the Gucci outlet and one million bowls of gelato (which was probably more expensive in the long run!), has been an international subscription to the Food Network magazine. I’ve definitely learned a lot from Italians when it comes to food, family and the combination of… 

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Lentil sausage soup with spinach (a Barefoot Contessa lentil soup makeover)

Lentil sausage soup with spinach up close

IT’S HERE! I LOVE SOUP SEASON. Even though the Roman weather keeps playing tricks on us–one day it’s cool and crisp, the next is so hot and humid that everyone is sweating before we leave the house–we’ve started making soup. And even better, we’ve started freezing soup too. This recipe makes more than enough to… 

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Sausage & spinach with raisins, pine nuts & rice

sausage, spinach and rice

THIS ONE STARTED WITH BUDDY. Do you know the Cake Boss? I’m sure you do but I didn’t. In Rome, we have a bit of American TV but it’s a small selection and always a bit behind. Anyway, it appears that in the time I’ve been away from the States, one Buddy Valastro has become… 

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Saturday scramble: Breakfast for dinner, or lunch or brunch…

Scrambled eggs with spinach and pancetta

CALL IT A VARIATION of green eggs and ham. We do scrambled eggs or a fritatta (baked in the oven for the last 10 minutes to get fluffy) often. It’s easy, inexpensive, healthy and the toddler likes it. Sold! Today’s version included pancetta and spinach (frozen, organic) sauteed in olive oil then whisked eggs, milk,… 

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Simply delicious side dish: sauteed spinach with garlic

Sauteed spinach with garlic

WE GET A PLATE OF CICORIA EVERY TIME Paul and I go to a restaurant. As usual, I’d never heard of this famous Roman specialty before we moved here but now I’m hooked. Sauteed with olive oil, garlic and sometimes red pepper flakes, it’s all at once rich and buttery, bitter and spicy. Plus it’s… 

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Spinach berry brownie cups

Brownies with frosting

WE GOT LOCKED OUT. It’s happened before. Back when I was pregnant with Phoebe, my mom came to visit from Washington state. Something about the key in that door just wouldn’t work. It didn’t turn no matter who tried. I tried. My mom tried. Then we called Paul at work. He came home and tried…. 

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