RECIPES: Pear & pecan salad, chicken, bacon & artichoke pasta, chicken meatball soup


2 large red pears, quartered & cored

½ C. honey

½  tsp. Fresh cracked black pepper

½ tsp. Ground cinnamon

1 ½ C. pecan halves

½ C. white balsamic vinegar

1 shallot minced

1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

1 Tbsp. honey

½ tsp. Salt

¾ C. light olive oil

10 oz. mixed greens

10 oz. spinach

5 oz. crumbled blue cheese

1 C. dried cherries


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Place the quartered pears on a jelly roll pan lined with parchment paper, set aside.

3. Heat the honey in a small pan over medium heat, stir in the fresh cracked black pepper, cinnamon and cook for 3 to 5 minutes.

4. Using a spoon, coat pears with some of the honey mixture, then add the pecans to the pan with the remaining honey mixture, toss to coat well then pour pecans onto the lined jelly roll pan with the pears, bake for 20 minutes, remove and cool.

5. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together the white balsamic vinegar, shallot, Dijon mustard, honey and salt until well blended, stream in the olive oil, whisking continuously to incorporate vinaigrette. 

6. Combine the mixed greens and spinach, place even amounts of greens on each salad plate, topped with some of the pepper cinnamon pecans, roasted pears, crumbled blue cheese and dried cherries, drizzle with the vinaigrette and serve immediately.



8 oz. dry rotini

¼ C. olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

4 strips thick cut bacon, diced

2 - 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced

½ C. dry white wine

¾ C. chicken stock

½ C. marinated artichoke hearts, diced

⅓ C. sliced sun dried tomatoes

5 oz. fresh spinach

Fresh cracked black pepper

½ C. shaved Parmesan cheese


1. In a large pot, cook pasta according to the package directions, drain pasta reserving ½ cup of the pasta water, set pasta and water aside.

2. Next, add the oil to the pot and over medium heat saute the garlic, diced bacon and chicken breasts for 8-10 minutes until bacon is browned and chicken is no longer pink.

3. Pour the dry white wine, chicken stock, artichoke hearts and sun dried tomatoes into the pot and cook mixture for 8-10 minutes over medium heat adding pasta water to thin out if necessary.

4. Last, add in the cooked pasta and spinach, season with the fresh cracked pepper to taste and toss to coat all ingredients.

5. Serve pasta topped with Parmesan cheese.



1 lb. ground chicken

1 large egg, lightly beaten

3 cloves garlic, minced

⅛ C. Italian breadcrumbs

¾ C. Parmesan cheese, divided

1 tsp. Salt, divided

1 tsp. fresh Cracked black pepper, divided

¼ tsp. Red pepper flakes

5 C. chicken broth

28 oz. can crushed tomatoes

1 medium onion, minced

1 ½ tsp. Dried basil

1 tsp. Dried oregano

¼ C. fresh minced parsley

1 C. dried Rotini

½ C. whole milk or Half & Half

Baguette bread

1. In a large bowl mix together the ground chicken, egg, garlic, bread crumbs, ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, ½ teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper and red pepper flakes, form into walnut size meatballs and set aside.

2. In a large pot bring the chicken broth, crushed tomatoes, onion, basil, oregano, remaining ½ teaspoon salt and remaining ½ teaspoon black pepper to a boil, add the raw meatballs, parsley and dry Rotini pasta, reduce heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. In the last 5 minutes stir in the remaining ½ cup Parmesan cheese and whole milk until blended, serve with warm baguette bread.