Cooking creme and kitchen time

On Monday, I had grand plans of whipping up some huevos rancheros for Meatless Monday, but my plan was foiled when on top of my stressful day, I came home to a note from a professor telling me that my latest homework assignment was incorrect, and in order to get points, I should consider doing it over again. After a serious breakdown (the original assignment took me 4 hours!), I got crackin’ while the fiancé threw together some tortellini for us. I took a break for dinner, and then got back to the homework, finishing in about 2ish hours. So, hopefully I’ll get to try my hand at the recipe I had brewing next week.

I always hate when I miss a day in the kitchen, so I was happy to have time to make something on Tuesday night. After seeing quite a few commercials for the new Philadelphia Crème, and also receiving a $1 off coupon, I decided to pick some up. Of course, I gravitated towards the “Santa Fe” style, and thought it would make a great creamy and cheesey (and quick!) pasta dish. I’m always up for trying new things, and I think this cooking crème is a nice substitute for a healthier version of an alfredo. It comes in four different flavors, so it’s really versatile. The little tub even came with some recipe ideas attached, which was pretty neat!

I’m happy to report that since I started running last week, I’ve tackled 2, 3, and 4 miles! Even though it’s been extremely difficult to breathe (apparently my lungs forgot how to work under pressure), I’ve been able to keep it under 9 minute miles, without pushing myself. It’s nothing spectacular, but considering I really haven’t run since January, and throughout December only ran maybe 3-4 times, I can’t complain! The discomfort in my foot isn’t completely gone, but it goes away within a mile or so of starting the run, and isn’t a pain so much as it just feels “weird.” I’m hoping this means I can finish the race on April 17th (hey, I want that medal!), and then take a little time off before starting again to train for the big guy, the Philadelphia Marathon. Fingers crossed!

But back to the food… I highly recommend checking out the Philadelphia Crème if you’re looking for a quick dish that easily adds a lot of flavor. I’m not going to lie, I was pretty skeptical (and a little weirded out) of the idea at first, but I’m glad I decided to give it a try. It was quick and easy, which has been all I can afford to devote my time to the past few weeks. The semester is thankfully coming to a close in the next few weeks, so hopefully before the next one starts up (it’s never ending!) I’ll get to spend some more time in the kitchen. If only there were more hours in the day…

Baked Southwestern Pasta Skillet
-Serves 4-

2 cups pasta (I used elbow, you can use any kind you’d like)
3/4 cup black beans
3/4 cup corn
1 can diced tomatoes & jalapenos
1 small yellow onion, diced
2 Tbsp cooking oil
1/2 cup shredded cheese (I used a jack and cheddar combo), plus another 1/2 cup
1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp Philadelphia Crème – Santa Fe style
1/4 cup Panko bread crumbs

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Prepare pasta according to package
3. Meanwhile, heat oil in skillet, add onion, and cook for 5 minutes. Then, add black beans, tomatoes, and corn, cooking for an additional 5 minutes. Set aside.
4. Once pasta is fully cooked, combine in skillet with sauteed mixture, add Philadelphia Crème and 1/2 cup of cheese, making sure to combine evenly.
5. Transfer pasta to a greased baking dish, top with bread crumbs and bake for 10 minutes. Top with remaining cheese, and bake for an additional 10 minutes.