Friday, February 18, 2011

A Book And A Recipe

A Book

One of my greatest pleasures in life is when I find a book that so completely enthralls me that I can't put it down. And, when I must put it down that book keeps calling to me and I can't wait to pick it up again.

I love it when that happens.

I wish it happened with every book that I read. But, it takes a great book. And, I found such a book this week at a visit to the library.

I almost didn't pick it up. I found it among the new releases in the inspirational section at the library. I've learned from past experience that 'inspirational' doesn't necessarily mean Christian. Sometimes it just means 'spiritualism'. So I was cautious.

I saw this book and it caught my attention because it looked different from the typical Christian fiction. Truth be told I get frustrated with Christian fiction many times because it all seems to be romance. And a lot of times it lacks the meat in it's writing that I crave.

But this book was different. And, it's authoress is indeed a Christian. And the novel contains a powerful Christian message.

Here's the description as found on the back cover,

"The Legions have left the province of Britain and the Western Roman Empire has dissolved into chaos. With the world plunged into darkness, paganism and superstition are as rampant as ever. In the Down country of southern Britain, young Indi has grown up knowing nothing more than his gods of horses and thunder; so when a man from across the sea comes preaching a single God slain on a cross, Indi must choose between his gods or the one God-and face the consequences of his decision."

I can not say enough good things about this book. If you enjoy historical fiction and are looking for something new to read, this is definitely the book for you! I won't say too much more about it so as not to give away the story. But, I have to say that one of the most fascinating parts for me was how God's plan of salvation was presented to a culture and a society who knew nothing of God, a society who had no knowledge of any of the scriptures.

A Recipe

I mentioned in yesterday's post that I wanted to share a recipe with you for Chicken Rigatoni. I love pasta. I love eating Italian food when I go out to eat. But, try as hard as I may, I can never seem to capture the same flavor that I love so much in a dish from a restaurant when I cook at home.

This recipe actually tasted like something I'd eat at a restaurant. And, I loved it!

Now, if you are the sort of person who must follow an actual recipe then you will want to go to this link where I found the recipe for a Chicken Rigatoni that tasted like it came from the Macaroni Grille. ( I didn't have mushrooms, cooking wine, or cream).

I didn't follow the recipe exactly because a) I didn't have all the ingredients and b) I have trouble following recipes.

So, here's what I did....
My Version of Chicken Rigatoni

1. Cut about 1 1/2 pounds of boneless skinless chicken breast into strips. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and onion powder. Melt about 4 Tb. butter into a cast iron skillet. When butter is melted and skillet is hot, add chicken and cook until no longer pink. Remove chicken and set aside.

2. In the same skillet add another 2-4 Tb. of butter and 1-2 Tb. of olive oil. Heat until butter is melted scraping bits of chicken from bottom of pan. Add 1-2 TB minced garlic & 1 Tb. onion powder. Saute for about 1-2 minutes and then add 1 Tb. ground basil (fresh would be even better!).

3. Here's the weird part. I didn't have cream and we were out of milk as well. But I DID have liquid coffee creamer (non-flavored) so that's what I used. Strangely enough it worked just fine. Add cream ( or in my case coffee creamer) slowly to the pan stirring all the goodness together. Add about 1/2 cup to start. Allow to simmer a couple minutes. Then add about another 1/2 cup to 1 cup. Stir and simmer a couple more minutes (I'm completely guessing here about how much I actually put in).

4. Right before you are ready to serve, add about 1/2 cup parmesan cheese to the mixture and stir until it thickens. Return the meat to the sauce mixture. Then add enough cooked rigatoni to coat the rigatoni but still leave plenty of saucy goodness.

5. Serve & eat.

Next time I will absolutely make this with mushrooms and carmelized onions...and actual cream. I never thought to add basil to a cream sauce before, but that is absolutely what gave it such a great flavor.

A Reminder
The last day for entries for the Seeds Family Worship CD and prayer journal giveaway is Sunday. Don't forget to enter!

Have a great weekend!


  1. Thanks for the book recommendation. I am always looking for a good read. I get so overwhelmed at the bookstore or the library- so many to choose from! I will try to find this one. Your recipe sounds yummy, thanks for sharing.

  2. Oh I might need to check that out...Have you ever read "The Hawk and the Dove" by Penelope Wilcox??...if not it is the best historical fiction I have ever read...I have bought and given tons of copies.

    Recipe looks great...I am starving myself to get off the are beating me at this game...I am exercising!!!

  3. Loving Pasta here too.
    Love the haircuts too...and the decorations for Valentines were so cute!


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