Tuesday, February 13, 2018

30- minute Valentine's Day Meal: Bow Tie Pasta with Vodka Sauce and Chicken

"One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating." ~Luciano Pavarotti

I can put an entire meal on the table is less than 30 minutes! You can do it too, and even for Valentine's Day!

Here's my Italian Cuisine menu:

Appetizer:Toasted Ravioli with sauce
Entree:Bow Tie Pasta with Vodka Sauce and Chicken
Side Dish:Buttered peas
Salad:Italian Salad
Bread:Garlic bread
Dessert: Angel Food Cake drizzled with Strawberry Sauce

Hungry yet?

Here we go!

Bow Tie Pasta with Vodka Sauce and Chicken

*1 pkg. skinless, boneless chicken strips
*1 bag Bow-tie Pasta
*3 T. butter
*1 tsp. minced garlic (you can buy it already minced in a small jar)
*1 jar vodka Sauce
*grated Parmesan cheese

Boil pasta according to pkg. directions.
While it boils...

Saute meat in butter and garlic till all pink is gone and meat is just a bit golden. Set aside.
When pasta is done, drain and add cooked chicken . Pour jar of sauce over and stir so heat from pasta warms the sauce. Sprinkle with Parmesan!


There's your main course. Now, the other dishes are what I call "cheater dishes".

Toasted Ravioli

Purchase a box of frozen ravioli and cook according to pkg. directions.
Serve with a jar of PIZZA sauce for dipping .(I like it better than Marinara for these.)

Sweet Peas with Butter

Drain 1 can sweet peas, put 1/4 stick butter on top and microwave for 3 minutes. Stir.

Garlic Bread
Purchase frozen garlic Texas toast. Add your own grated mozzarella if you like. Bake according to pkg. directions.

Purchase a bag of pre-made Italian salad. Add chopped black olives from the can, drained, add a few cherry tomatoes,add some sliced pepperoni and sprinkle with Parmesan.

Angel Food Cake with strawberry Sauce

1 store-bought angel food cake.
1 container frozen strawberries, thawed.

Add sugar to taste to the berries, then drizzle over top of cake. The longer the berries in sauce sit on the cake, you'll get the effect like mine in this pic.

There you have it!

A delicious "optical illusion" of a nice dinner that didn't knock you out, but will knock the socks off your guests when they realize it only took a few minutes to prepare.

If they ask for the recipe, just tell them it's a secret. Then make your family swear to secrecy!

Enjoy~ Everything in Moderation


  1. That is one heck of a good looking meal!! I really like the optical illusion that it took all day to make!!

  2. Oh, yum! I didn't know that you could buy toasted ravioli. I've heard people talk about that at restaurants, but I've never had it. I can't wait to hit the frozen food section of walmart saturday. Oh my goodness - I think that's the first time I've ever said that!

  3. Ginger- I'm full of magic tricks in the kitchen on a busy day.

    I prefer homemade, but sometimes, I just don't have the time. Like this evening. This was our meal. I worked all day, came home and made it, photgraphed it, wrote the post and posted it!

    Tiffany-I have a homemade recipe also, but rarely have the time to make it anymore. Of course homemade is always best, but in a pinch, this will do just fine!

  4. Have you ever made the vodka sauce from scratch? It's actually REALLY easy and oh my, the taste is outta this world. If you don't want a big ol' 5th of vodka hanging around the house you can buy the little 'travel' size bottles. (I call those samples myself.)

    That strawberry dessert looks pretty darn good!

  5. Annie- Yes, I have the recipe from Southern Living that is wonderful, but this is my "FAST and Furious" recipe. The homemade version is always better,but this is great considering I only unscrewed the lid and poured it on!

  6. Mmmmmm...I've never even heard of toasted ravioli but it sounds deLIGHTful!

  7. I love fast meals and this is a great one because it looks like you spent hours cooking it. Bravo idea. I'll be back each Friday or is it Thursday to see what you have for a fast meal.

    Nice to meet you,

    Fellow Foodie Blogger

  8. Mama Kat- I made this especially for you!I'm surprised that you are the second person that has mentioned not knowing about toasted ravioli, as it is a staple 'round these parts!

    Jaime and Jen DISH- The FAST AND FURIOUS dishes will be on FRIDAYS regularly.Sorry for the silly confusion there.

  9. And to think we had rice krispies...ahhh to be able to cook like this.

  10. oh my goodness. a whole italian menu? when can I come over for dinner?

  11. burpandslurp-You're welcome anytime! Just give a one day's worth of "Head's Up" and I'm cooking!

  12. kisatrtle-come see me before you serve rice krispie treats for supper! This dinner was probably EASIER! (And much more substantial!)

  13. Oh how I love vodka sauce! I need to get it into my rotation. I'm going to have to look for the toasted ravioli, it's insane!

    Your angel food cake has me drooling, I'd love that for dessert.

  14. What a fab dinner, can I come over!! Seriously??

  15. Katherine- I usually use fresh berries mashed with a bit of sugar and drizzle that over the cake- it tastes even better of course, but for the sake of time, I went went the thawed, frozen fruit.

    This pasta dish is one of my grown son's favorites, so it is in my rotation of Sunday dinners I make when the gangs all here.

    Newleyweds_ Where do you live? Are you close enough?

  16. That looks yummy, and really easy. I will have to try these things. Thanks for showcasing this easy awesome meal

  17. Thank you Amy- it was SIMPLE! You'll have to check back on Fridays when I feature more 'FAST and FURIOUS' meals.