I have missed being on here! I think this was the longest time ( this is the fourth day) I have not posted something. Not that I have stopped cooking or baking. I was just busy with other stuff a.k.a enjoying the great outdoors. Weather has not been really kind to us Sydneysiders for some time now. Mostly rains. So, the past days when the sun was kind enough to grace us with its presence, I took every advantage of it and went anywhere near the coast. I know it is nearly winter here, technically starting 1st of June but that’s when I like going to the beach or ocean because it is nearly deserted. Great time to chill out (well, in this case literally chilling :D) and just enjoy the scenery and admire the brave surfers battling the big swell. Yesterday, I went out-of-town, got on a three-hour-30-minute-train ride from Sydney to the northern coast, one way by the way. I was planning to do the coastal walk but was drawn to this spectacular vastness of white sand and the bluest water and sky you can possibly imagine. It was awesome! I walked up to the lighthouse area and to the breakwater. My goodness it was freezing and very windy that taking photos with my phone camera was a struggle. But it was worth the long trip and cold and windy weather as the place was just spectacular.
I have made quick and easy to prepare meals all these times. Watching the sunset then rushing back home to prepare dinner, these easy-to-prepare meals came handy. I made some smoked chicken and pasta salad a couple of nights ago which was so easy to assemble. I found the recipe at Taste.com.au. The recipe uses penne pasta but I used fusillata instead, which worked out great. You can use any short pasta you like. I really liked the flavours in this one. The smoky chicken, the peppery rocket, the oven-roasted capsicums, which were all complemented by the sour cream and grated parmesan sauce mixture.Ingredients
- 1 large (about 280g) red capsicum, halved, deseeded, cut into 2cm-thick strips
- olive oil spray
- 1 x 500g pkt smoked chicken drumsticks
- 200g (2 1/2 cups) short pasta
- 2-3 tbs finely grated parmesan
- 1/2 cup light sour cream
- 1 bunch rocket, ends trimmed, washed, dried
- Salt & freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat oven to 220°C. Line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper. Place capsicum on prepared tray and spray with oil. Bake on top shelf of preheated oven for 20 minutes. Wrap chicken in foil and place on a baking tray. Bake in oven for 8-10 minutes or until heated through. Remove from oven. Remove chicken meat from bones. Discard bones.You can peel the skin off drumsticks before heating them if you like.
2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large saucepan of salted boiling water following packet directions until al dente. Drain and return to the pan. Cover with a lid to keep warm.
3. Combine parmesan and sour cream in a bowl.4. Divide the pasta among serving plates. Top with chicken, capsicum, rocket and a dollop of the sour cream mixture. Season with salt and pepper.I actually did not add any more salt and pepper as the peppery rocket and the parmesan cheese were enough to give this dish a really interesting tasty flavour. And just to give an idea of why I love the beach on a cold day, a couple of photos from yesterday’s trip. Pardon the not-so-good camera phone quality which did not do much justice to the beautiful scenery I truly enjoyed yesterday.