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How do you file your recipes?

I’m ashamed to say, I keep my handwritten recipes, magazine clippings, gift recipes, all stuffed into a 24-year-old composition notebook. When I was 18 years old, I moved to another state to work as a nanny, and started this notebook to take many of my mother’s recipes with me. As years passed, it just seemed to be the place to file a quick recipe on the fly, and here it is, almost 25 years later, and I’m still using it. I’ve looked for blank books, file folders, boxes, to replace this piece of my history, but nothing has felt quite right. It’s certainly not pretty, and believe me, the graphic designer in me hates it! But the cook in me can respect the eclectic collection and years of inspiration.

Green Chile Chicken

This rich, creamy, spicy dish is one of my husband’s favorites. Add the cooling avocado, and it makes it one of mine.


  • 8 oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • 1 cup button mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 – 4 oz can diced green chilies
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4  tsp salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 Tbsp fresh or dried chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup evaporated skimmed milk or half-and-half
  • Splash of dry white wine to deglaze the pan (optional)
  • 6 oz shredded Pepper-Jack cheese
  • 1 Tbsp sour cream
  • 1/2 package spaghetti, cooked and drained (do not rinse)
  • 1 medium avocado, sliced


  1. Add olive oil to skillet: 2 turns around the pan, then add the chicken, green chilies and garlic, and sautee until chicken is almost cooked, then add in mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes more
  2. To prepare sauce, deglaze the pan with a splash of white wine (optional — water or stock will do); then add the milk and sour cream and stir to combine. Season with the smoked paprika, then slowly add in the pepper-jack cheese and stir until melted and incorporated. It is often best to combine the cheese with a whisk to avoid clumping. If the sauce is too thick, add a splash more milk or wine.
  3. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and add parsley, then serve atop cooked spaghetti and garnish with sliced avocado.

Serves 2-3, depending on how hungry you are!