Friday, February 8, 2013

Cajun Chicken Broccoli Pasta

Mmmm the creamy goodness of Cajun Chicken Pasta. We love how the fusilli catches all the luscious spicy sauce in its gorgeous corkscrew curls. We thought, what else has little nooks and crannies for sopping up sauce? It's green and starts with a b and ends with a roccoli. To extend the sauce a little further, you can spice up your pasta with  fresh chopped tomatoes from the salad bar and a dash of black pepper. 

Cajun Chicken Broccoli Pasta
1 dish of Cajun Chicken Pasta
fresh chopped tomatoes
basil infused olive oil
garlic powder

Steam the broccoli by placing them in a single layer on a dish and drizzling on some basil infused olive oil, paprika, garlic powder, and a sprinkling of salt. Cover with an inverted plate and microwave 100-120 seconds, until broccoli is just cooked through. Top the pasta with tomatoes and microwave 30 seconds to warm everything through. Toss the broccoli over the pasta and sprinkle everything with salt and pepper to taste. 

Spinach Artichoke Grilled Cheese

Spinach artichoke dip is delicious. It's probably not the spinach and artichoke's responsibility. That's right ooey gooey melty Cheese, we're looking at you. But we have to admit that Cheese's intrinsic deliciousness is buoyed by the humble presence of Spinach and Artichoke. Bet you didn't know that spinach artichoke grilled cheese could reveal such deep insights into life, did you?

Spinach Artichoke Grilled Cheese
2 slices rustic bread
artichoke hearts
baby spinach
1 slice swiss cheese
1 slice mozzarella cheese
nonstick vegetable oil spray

Sandwich the artichoke hearts, baby spinach, and two cheeses between the bread. Spray the panini press with nonstick vegetable oil spray. Place the sandwich on the grill and grill for 2-5 minutes, until golden brown and crispy and the cheese is just melted.

Sunday Morning Crepes

Are crepes for breakfast or dessert? Why can't breakfast be dessert, you ask? Ah my friend, that's the spirit. Of course, if you load on the berries and some freshly sliced bananas, you can justify any dessert/breakfast. Get your calcium and protein fix from some vanilla soft serve (of course that's why we put it on everything...), and you'll be primed to seize the day. 

Sunday Morning Crepes
3 crepes
crepe fillings of choice: chocolate sauce, whipped cream, cream cheese and jam
strawberry compote
pineapple compote
2 bananas, sliced
vanilla soft serve

Spread a different filling on each crepe. We used chocolate sauce, whipped cream, and cream cheese/jam. Fold each crepe in half twice and plate them slightly overlapping. Garnish the crepes with strawberry and pineapple compote, vanilla soft serve, and banana medallions. Savor with a cup of tea and the Sunday morning paper. 

Michelle's Thai Iced Tea

You can't get Thai iced tea from the soda dispenser at the Ratty. But you can come pretty close. This ingenious recipe, created by Michelle Zheng, is a refreshing stand in for a classic bubble tea shop staple!

Michelle's (Sort of) Thai Iced Tea
Take a classic plastic Ratty cup, and fill it in this order with:
1/5 glass ice
3/5 unsweetened iced tea
1/5 raspberry iced tea
2 pumps vanilla coffee creamer

Mix well and enjoy!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Local Food Forum 2013

Mark your calendars for Wednesday 2/6, the yearly networking event for Rhode Island food producers, buyers, students, community members, and local food enthusiasts in between! More info about the event here.

In the spirit of this year's theme - Center of the Plate: What Makes Meat and Seafood Sustainable? - we would like to highlight some of the ongoing efforts in sustainability happening inside the Ratty.

Seafood - sourced from Clipper Seafood, a locally based company committed to sustainable fishing and conservation of local fish species

Chicken - supplied by Warwick Poultry, a local distributor in RI

The best part about cooking with fresh, local ingredients means you usually don't need to do a whole lot to make it taste good. Simply dress up a Rhode Island Chicken Salad with some fresh lettuce and tomato, or garnish a filet of local tilapia or sustainable salmon with seasonal veggies, and you'll have yourself a healthy, hearty, and delicious local meal in no time.