Saturday, March 19, 2011

Another fun experience with Food!

Yes, it has been awhile.  Things happen, life goes on... mom has a lot of things to do!

I got myself into another one of the "House Parties" to provide fun goodies and food for friends so I decided to make a luncheon out of it and hosted my friends on the Finance Committee of Utah PTA.  After all, the Utah PTA office in Murray is my home away from home!

This was for Philly Cooking Creme Cheese.  I decided to make a one-pot pasta... a Pampered Chef recipe I like.  Since the meeting was 2 hours long, though, I made the dish the night before and put it in a casserole dish to warm in the oven during the meeting so it would be ready to go.  I honestly was sad that it was a bit dry. Not the product's fault, but mine.

Kraft sent all kinds of goodies for the guests: a wooding cooking spoon, notepad, fridge magnet, coupon for the product and recipe book!  As the host I got a new fry pan (that my 16-year-old son says is the best pan ever!) and a cute oven mitt!  You should sign up to do a house party!  I have done Oscar Mayer and Chex Mix ones. House Party!

I am sharing the recipe with you along with a fun picture of the food and our cute receptionist at the office who keeps us smiling and laughing... Candace!!

Pampered Chef's One-Pot Pasta (adapted by Lisa Anderson)
4   garlic cloves, peeled
1   jar (7 oz or 210 mL) sun-dried tomatoes in oil, undrained (DID NOT USE - I cut up cherry tomatoes and guests added them if they wished)
3   cans (14.5 oz each) vegetable broth (5¼ cups/1.25 L)
1   lb (450 g) uncooked penne pasta (I used bowtie)
1   head broccoli (2 cups/500 mL small florets)
2   medium carrots, peeled
4   oz (125 g) reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufch√Ętel) (I used the new Philadelphia Italian Cheese and Herb Cooking Creme) 
1/2   tsp (2 mL) coarsely ground black pepper (did not use)
1/4   tsp (1 mL) salt (did not use)
   Grated fresh Parmesan cheese and snipped fresh basil leaves (optional)
I doubled the recipe and used the entire 10 oz. container of the Philly Italian Cheese and Herb Cooking Creme.

Original Directions (I am not affiliated with Pampered Chef or their products, though I love using them):
  1. Slice garlic using Garlic Slicer. Place garlic and 1 tbsp (15 mL) oil from sun-dried tomatoes into (8-qt./7.6-L) Stockpot; cook over medium heat 2-3 minutes or until garlic is golden brown, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; add broth. Return Stockpot to burner; increase heat to high. Cover and bring to a boil. Add pasta; cover and simmer vigorously 8-10 minutes or until pasta is almost cooked but still firm, stirring occasionally using Mega Scraper.
  2. Meanwhile, cut broccoli into small florets; place into Classic Batter Bowl. Cut carrots in half lengthwise; thinly slice crosswise on a bias. Drain tomatoes; pat dry and slice into thin strips.
  3. Cut cream cheese into cubes. Add vegetables, cream cheese, black pepper and salt to pasta; stir until cream cheese is melted and fully incorporated. Reduce heat to medium; cover and cook an additional 2-4 minutes or until vegetables are tender. If desired, top with Parmesan cheese and basil.
Yield: 6 servings

Our FABULOUS receptionist Candace!
Shauna made the best chocolate carrot cake with creme cheese frosting!  Ginger was getting her plate ready to be dished up.
This photo shows the Philly cooking creme cheese tubs.  They have 4 varieties and I found them at Macey's with all the other creme cheese.

I casually asked guests to bring desserts... and we had 4 kinds of chocolate desserts... OH BABY they were ALL good!!!

It's good to get free stuff... especially FOOD!!!!