Small Dice Challenge: Lemony Spinach Alfredo Pasta


When we came home from Jazz class, my daughter asked to watch Chopped.  They had a Halloween special with gory-themed ingredients, including eyeballs and meal worms.  The eyeballs were really mozzarella balls with olives, but the mealworms were really mealworms. As she watched, my daughter was inspired to dress up in one of her three Halloween costumes, a unicorn Pegasus, but I had to, finally, pull her away so she could choose the ingredients for the night’s supper.  Of course, lighting a fire under her patoot was a task as she had her “horse” rummage through the fridge to find food.


Nevertheless, that sweet equine was a little nicer to me than my daughter had been the previous week on her choice of ingredients. She chose:


Annie’s Penne Pasta with Alfredo Sauce

Turkey Burger patties


Hawaiian bread

Well I went simple this week.  I cooked the pasta, but I livened up the sauce by adding half & half, butter, lemon, and pepper.


I, also, steamed some spinach to add some extra veggies.  I slacked on my motherly duties the day before by giving my daughter only a sandwich for lunch and burrito for dinner, she needed something a little healthier. So, I threw it in after the sauce was made. Moving on to the turkey patty. I had only one, so I grabbed some lamb flank and cooked them together. IMG_20151008_182152656Yes, I could’ve made a few little meatballs, but I got a late start on dinner, so I made my life a little easier by cutting up chunks and throwing them on top. Not beautiful, but the taste was not jeopardized.  Now back to my goal for a healthy dinner.  I decided to make croutons from the Hawaiian bread to add to a side salad. I cut up some cubes, tossed it in oil, and put it in the oven at, you guessed it, 350 degrees.  As I presented my plate, my child immediately looked for the bread, like I knew she would.IMG_20151008_184825170 It took her a second to realize I ruined its softness and she directly told me, “Aww, I thought you were gonna put the pasta in the bread, like a sandwich!”. Oh well, next time, I guess.  She did, however, enjoy her dinner.  In fact, we ate leftovers the next day.  This time I added my dear friend Pinot Grigio as I re-heated it and it tasted even better than the night before… but that could’ve been because of the addition of my own glass of wine.IMG_20151014_214355

Stay tuned for next week.  My daughter has shown interest in actually cooking with me.  It is truly Halloween!




Author: HungryEyes

I am a mother of two married to a Pastry Cook. I have worked in restaurants in various positions, but ended up as a teacher. Since having my last child, though, I am a stay-at-home mom trying to survive by cooking from home. I have never been someone who could open the fridge and whip up meals willy-nilly, but have been inspired by watching reruns of Chopped this summer. My post Small Dice is an ode to the show and, also, a challenge to myself to become a better cook and a more efficient mom. In addition, I love movies and music. I will be harassed throughout this blog for my love of Doris Day and Billy Idol, because they will be sure to come up, but I don’t care, it’s nothing new for me.

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