Monday, August 18, 2014

Four Legged Vistors

Around the homestead we are seeing a lot more deer which I am surprised bow season opened this past weekend and usually the deer disappear.  I would prefer the hunters went into the backcountry instead of around homes to hunt after all 3 year here we consider the deer pets and I get very protective of them.

A week ago I bought two bales of hay and put them on the side of our house. There are enough trees there to hide them from prying eyes. Every chance I got I looked out at the pile of hay and not one deer I did have a jack rabbit nibbling the hay.  Then sat when I got up I walked into the bathroom looked outside and saw something move.  I went and got my glasses and to my surprise there were over 9 deer and mostly bucks eating the hay.  The sun hadn't come over the mountain yet so the photos I did get were not great.

We don't usually start getting this number of deer until fall and winter, summer we have 3 or 4 hanging around, during the winter we have had 20 plus eating the hay we put out. Although our summer has been mild we still had temperatures in the low 90's this weekend.

During the hot weather I like to fix meals that are not heavy this Lemon Chicken Orzo Pasta hit the spot. It was light, refreshing and I didn't feel stuffed after dinner.

Lemon Chicken and Orzo Pasta

3 chicken breasts
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon lemon pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed
3 tablespoons capers
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
5 cloves garlic, minced
3 large lemons, juiced
1 cup yellow squash, diced
1 1/2 cup brussel sprouts, cut into 3rds
olive oil
1 pound box orzo pasta
3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
juice from 1 lemon and zest
3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
6 leaves fresh basil, rough chopped
parmesan shavings

Cut chicken into uniform bite size cubes, sprinkle with salt, lemon pepper and oregano and place in a large ziploc bag.  Add to the bag capers, olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and the whole lemon. Seal bag and squish around so everything coats the chicken; refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

At this time take the chicken out of the fridge and allow to sit at room temperature while you do this next step. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees, place diced squash and sliced brussel sprouts on a foil lined cookie sheet. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper; toss and have the veggies spread out evenly on foil. Roast for 20 minutes; stirring vegetables half way through. Remove from oven and set aside. (you can use any vegetable you like, this is what I had on hand)

Cook the orzo pasta according to the boxes direction.  Discard lemon peels from the chicken. Heat a skillet and cook the chicken a little at a time, no need to add any extra oil.  Add to the vegetable mixture.  Once the pasta is done cooking and is drained add to the skillet.  Squeeze lemon juice and zest  to pasta, add grated parmesan cheese and stir.  Add chicken, vegetables and basil to the pasta; stir. Top with parmesan shavings.

Pasta is also good cold as a salad

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  1. Orzo is one of my favorite pastas and I love that you added Brussels sprouts and yellow squash to it. It sounds delicious!!! I also love your four legged visitors. They're so regal and beautiful!
    Renee - Kudos Kitchen

  2. Looks delicious. We still get excited when we see deer and bunnies.

  3. I would love to look out my window and see that every morning!


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