1 small onion, cut in half and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
Salt and pepper
8-ounce boneless chicken breast, cut crosswise into thin strips
1 cup roasted tomato salsa
2 tablespoons sour cream
6 ounces dried fettuccine, freshly cooked according to package directions (reserved 1/4 cup of the cooking water)
Chopped fresh cilantro for garnish (optional)
HEAT 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat.
ADD the bell pepper strips and stir fry until richly browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add the onion and cook until softened, then add the garlic and stir for 1 minute. Transfer the vegetables to a bowl.
RETURN the skillet to medium heat and add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil. Add chicken strips to skillet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook until golden brown on one side, about 3 minutes, then turn over and sear the other side for one minute more.
ADD the salsa to the skillet. Stir for a couple of minutes as the salsa thickens slightly and the chicken cooks through. Add the reserved peppers and onions. Reduce the heat to medium-low, stir in the sour cream and reserved pasta cooking water.
SERVE the spicy chicken mixture over the fettuccine, in warmed pasta bowls. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro if desired.
Honey whole-wheat, pan de mie or "Blue Monday" bread from Charleston Bread make great croutons. The extra bread trimmings can be baked until crisp and then ground up for homemade breadcrumbs. Can be made 1 day ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.
1/4 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 loaf country-style bread, sliced
HEAT oven to 350°.
WHISK olive oil, garlic and salt in small bowl to blend. Lay bread slices on cutting board and brush with garlic oil. Cut out croutons using a small, heart-shaped cookie cutter. Transfer hearts to a baking sheet.
BAKE croutons until golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes.
April Hamilton has always said, "Cooking is fun!" She shares her easy, practical recipes for delicious food through her cooking classes for kids and families. April's husband and three daughters help with testing and tasting in their Charleston kitchen. April would love to hear from you: Email aprilskitchencoun...@gmail.com.