Friday, November 19, 2010

Mexican Wedding Cookies

1 c. butter
3/4 c. powdered sugar
2 c. flour
1/4 t. salt
1 t. vanilla
nuts chopped

Mix thoroughly, roll into balls. Makes about 72. Put all on 1 cookie sheet. Bake at 250 for 1 hour. Shake in bag of powdered sugar.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

kale & tomato rice

here's one of our faves. got the idea from a dish made with kale and tomatoes and just kept adding ingredients to make it tastier and here's what I got.

1 1/2 cups cooked white rice (I make mine with vegetable stock instead of water)
2 garlic clove, minced
1/2 yellow onion diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup raisins
2 cups finely chopped & rinsed kale (about half a bunch)

In a heavy skillet saute the garlic & onions in oil over moderately low heat, stirring, until golden. Add the tomatoes and raisins. Stir occasionally for 3 to 5 minutes until tomatoes are heated through and raisins start to plump. Add the kale and cook until wilted about one minute. Remove from heat and stir in the rice. Salt to taste.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

BBQ Chicken Pizza

Mandy and I made this when she visited last month and I made it again last night. So tasty and easy. It's not really a recipe, but more a list of ingredients. Sorry, there are no real quantities.

1 recipe pizza dough (I used 1 1/2 cups wheat flour and 1 cup white flour instead of the 3 cups of flour)
BBQ sauce
rotisserie chicken, shredded and then coated with BBQ sauce (its a great way to use leftover chicken or you can cook your own chicken in BBQ sauce)
1 red pepper, sliced into thin strips
red onion, thinly sliced (about 1/3 to 1/2 depending on taste)
black beans, drained and rinsed (optional)
pepperoni (optional)
shredded mozzarella (about 2 cups)
shredded cheddar (about 1/2 cup)

Heat oven to 400.
Assembly: Roll crust, or press into 10x15" jelly roll pan. **If you don't have a pizza stone, I recommend prebaking the crust for about half the cooking time. This will prevent your crust from getting soggy and will give you a nice crisp on the outside, soft on the inside texture.**
Pre-bake just the crust for about 10 minutes. While the crust is cooking, assemble all your pizza toppings. Remove crust from oven. Spread about 1/4 cup BBQ sauce on crust (its really personal preference) Top with whatever toppings you are using. I added black beans to make a vegetarian version for my roommate (so technically it is a BBQ black bean pizza). Top everything with mozzarella and then just a bit of cheddar cheese. Bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, until cheese is bubbly and hot (I'll also put under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes to brown the cheese slightly) Slice and enjoy!

**I made my pizza crust in the morning and covered and placed in the refrigerator (the recipe says it doesn't need to rise, but I always think letting a yeast dough rise once makes it softer) When you get home from work or about 1 hour before you want to start assembling your pizza, remove the dough to the counter to come up to room temperature.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Beach Street Lemon Chicken Linguine

Michelle is at it again--making another amazing meal. We had this last night at Sunday dinner and it was fabulous! My vegetarian roommate even said just the noodles with the lemony sauce were delish (no, she didn't eat the chicken!)

1 lb linguine
1/2 c olive oil
zest from one lemon
juice from one lemon
1/2 c chopped green onion
1/4 c parsley
salt and pepper
Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup olive oil
1 clove garlic
2 T Cajun seasoning
1 T lemon juice
2 T minced parsley
1 T brown sugar
1 T soy sauce
3 chicken breasts sliced ( or 16 large shrimp)

Combine marinade ingredients in a Ziploc bag, add chicken. refrigerate for 1-12 hours. Cook marinated chicken in skillet with all juices, until chicken is done.

Cook linguine in salted water, drain and rinse. Combine first 5 ingredients in bowl and add pasta and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss in Parmesan cheese. Serve chicken with juices over linguine. Delicious!

Friday, April 16, 2010

30-Minute Green Chicken Enchiladas

I got this recipe from a recent issue of Cook's Country magazine and added the half-and-half to suit my husband's tastes.  (He's become more and more anti-spicy over the years, even mild spicy, but I love him in spite of his deficiencies.)  This is quickly becoming one of our weeknight go-to meals because it's so quick and tasty.

2 (10-ounce) cans green enchilada sauce
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 rotisserie chicken, skin discarded, meat shredded into bite-sized pieces (about three cups) OR 2 (12.5-ounce) cans cooked chicken breast, drained and broken into pieces
2 ½ cups shredded Mexican cheese blend OR shredded cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper
12 (6-inch) corn tortillas
½ cup half-and-half, whipping cream, or whole milk, optional

Preheat oven to 400*F.

Puree enchilada sauce and 1 cup cilantro in a blender.  Combine 1 cup enchilada sauce mixture, chicken, and 1 ½ cups cheese in a large bowl and toss to combine.  Season with salt and pepper.

Wrap tortillas in a clean kitchen towel and microwave until hot and very pliable, 30 to 90 seconds.  Top each tortilla with approx. ¼ cup chicken mixture, roll tightly, and place seam-side down in a greased 9”x13” baking dish.  Spray tops of enchiladas lightly with cooking spray.

If desired, mix half-and-half, whipping cream, or whole milk with remaining enchilada sauce. Pour 1 to 1 ½ cups sauce mixture over top of enchiladas, then top with remaining 1 cup cheese.

Bake until cheese is melted and enchiladas are heated through, 15 to 20 minutes.  If desired, sprinkle with additional chopped cilantro and pass remaining enchilada sauce at table.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Sour Cream Chocolate Cake

This cake is very rich and delicious! I frost with either butter cream or chocolate cream cheese frosting (which makes it even more decadent!)

1 cup baking cocoa
1 cup boiling water
1 cup butter, softened
2 1/2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 t vanilla extract
3 cups cake flour
2 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1 cup sour cream

Dissolve cocoa in water; let stand until cool. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Add vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream (start and end with the dry ingredients) Beat until incorporated after each addition. Add cocoa mixture; beat well.

Pour into 3 greased and floured 9-in round cake pans. Bake 350 for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes; remove from pans and allow to cool completely before frosting.

**For my nieces birthday cake, I stirred in 1 pkg of Ghiradelli semi-sweet chocolate chips before pouring it into the pans for baking. I then frosted it with chocolate cream cheese frosting and garnished it with more chocolate chips.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Peruvian Breakfast Tacos

Really, this is just breakfast burritos with Edam cheese, the only melting cheese here and it is wonderful cheese anyway, and cilantro, and aji, the Peruvian equivalent of jalapenos but even more flavorful and a lovely orange color even though they are called aji verde! Tomatoes, green onions and cilantro round it out! So yummy and such a pretty plate of condiments!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Fish Tacos with Honey-Cumin Slaw and Chiptole Sauce

1 pound tilapia fillets, cut into chunks
1/2 cup fresh lime juice

1/3 cup fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
1 tablespoon adobo sauce from chipotle peppers
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups panko crumbs
salt and ground black pepper to taste
1 cup vegetable oil for frying

2 cups 3 color coleslaw blend
1 cup minced fresh cilantro leaves
1 (7 inch) (8 inch) flour tortillas

  1. Place the tilapia chunks in a flat dish and pour 1/2 cup lime juice over the fish. Cover, and refrigerate at least 4 hours.
  2. Meanwhile, make the honey-cumin sauce by whisking together 1/3 cup lime juice, honey, vegetable oil, and ground cumin a small bowl. Set aside until needed.
  3. To make the chipotle mayonnaise dressing, place the mayonnaise, chilies, adobo sauce, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and cayenne pepper together in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until smooth. Cover, and refrigerate until needed.
  4. To bread the fish, place the flour, eggs, and panko crumbs in three separate shallow dishes. Season the fish with salt and pepper to taste. Dip the fish pieces first in the four, coating evenly, and shaking off any excess. Dip next in the eggs, and last in the panko crumbs, patting the pieces to help the breadcrumbs hold. Set the fish aside on a plate.
  5. To cook the breaded fish, pour 1 cup vegetable oil into a skillet to 1/4 inch deep. Heat the oil to 365 degrees F (185 degrees C) over medium heat. Cook the fish, turning until all sides are golden brown, and flesh is easily flaked with a fork. Drain on paper towels. Brush the fish with the honey-cumin sauce.
  6. Mix the coleslaw and cilantro together in a bowl. Reserve 1/4 cup of the chipotle mayonnaise dressing, and pour the remaining dressing over the coleslaw mixture. Toss to coat evenly with the dressing.
  7. Place the tortillas on a flat surface, and spread each with 1 tablespoon reserved chipotle mayonnaise dressing. Divide the fish between the tortillas. Top with the cilantro coleslaw.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Oatmeal Berry Muffins

I got this recipe somewhere, but I have no idea what blog I pulled it from. All I know is this was adapted from Joy the Baker and that Matt and his coworkers polished off a double batch in record time.

1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/4 cups oats
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 T canola oil
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 cup frozen berries {I used raspberries, blackberries & blueberries}

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a muffin tin with paper liners or spray with Pam. {If you want to freeze these, use Pam instead of liners.}

In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. In a medium bowl, combine applesauce, buttermilk, sugar, oil, egg and extracts. Make a well in dry ingredients and add applesauce mixture. Stir until just moist. Fold in berries. Fill muffin cups 2/3 full. Bake for 16-18 minutes. Cool on a rack.

{These freeze very well. I just let them cool on the rack, then put a dozen into a gallon freezer bag and froze laying flat. I just took a couple out of the freezer and put them in a ziploc the night before and put it with Matt's lunch in the fridge and they were thawed and ready to eat by breakfast time.}

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Homemade Breakfast Sausage

I don't think I'll ever bother to buy pre-made breakfast sausage again.

2 lbs ground pork*
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
2 teaspoons dried sage
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl; mix well.  Shape into 2 1/2" patties, about 1/2" thick.  Melt 1 tablespoon butter in large skillet over medium heat.  Cook half of patties until well browned and cooked through, about 3-5 minutes per side.  Transfer to paper towels to drain.  Wipe out skillet and repeat with remaining butter and patties.  Yield: 16 patties.

*You can usually find ground pork next to the ground beef.  Do NOT use lean or extra lean ground pork--it won't have enough fat in it to cook up properly.  You can also check the butcher's counter in your grocery store for ground pork breakfast sausage, which usually has just sage added; reduce the sage in the recipe to compensate.

Crockpot Pulled Pork

1 pork tenderloin (1 lb)
1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons + 1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons + 1 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon + 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon spicy brown mustard
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Cut the tenderloin in half; place in crockpot.  Whisk remaining ingredients together and pour over tenderloin.  Cook on low for 4-5 hours, until pork is cooked through and tender.

Remove pork from crockpot and use two forks to shred.  Stir sauce in crockpot, then add pork back to pot.  Toss well and allow to heat through.

Serve on hamburger buns or split kaiser rolls.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Shinsel spaghetti

I know, I should have posted this a long time ago. I just always fudge the amounts, so it's hard to say how much of everything I actually put in! Here's a good guess anyway!

1-1.5 lbs. ground beef (or sausage)
2 cans Stewed Tomatos (15 oz cans)--can use italian style or regular, but DO NOT DRAIN
2 cans tomato sauce (8oz cans--or 1 15 oz can)
1/2 tsp garlic powder and 1/2 tsp. salt OR 1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp basil
1 tsp thyme
2 tsp oregeno
2-3 bay leaves
2 beef bullion cubes
1/4 c. sugar
1/2 lb. grated cheese (or to taste)
8 oz package of spaghetti noodles (regular--thin doesn't turn out so well)

Start water to boil in large pot. In a large skillet brown hamburger. Drain excess fat and add tomatos, sauce, sugar , herbs, etc. (Can also add other add in's as desired--tomatos, peppers, etc.) Simmer sauce while your noodles are cooking. Drain noodles. Return to pot. Pour sauce into pot with noodles. Add cheese. Stir. Enjoy!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Healthified Crispy-Coated Chicken


Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes

1 c finely crushed multigrain tortilla chips
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp pepper
1 egg
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
shredded romaine
salsa (I really like it with Mango salsa, my husband liked regular)
Avocado slices
In a shallow bowl combine tortilla chips, oregano, cumin and pepper. Place egg in another shallow dish, beat lightly. Dip chicken in egg and then chips.
Place chicken on a cookie sheet sprayed with nonstick spray. Bake about 25 minutes until chicken is no longer pink. Serve on a bed a shredded romaine with salsa and avocado slices.
* Whenever I make any type of crispy, breaded chicken I put a cooling rack on my pan and put the chicken on top of it. This cooks underneath and keeps the bottom from getting soggy.

Go-To Meals

Quesadillas- cook and shred chicken, add taco seasoning. Use chicken, cheese, black beans, veggies- whatever you like and heat between 2 tortillas either in microwave or on griddle. (I make the chicken ahead of time and freeze it and then this is very quick and easy).

Quick Chili

Tiny Spicy Chicken

Cranberry Meatballs

Soup- just add browned ground beef, a large can of tomatoes or water, whatever veggies I have (carrots, celery, onions, potatoes, peas, corn, beans, etc) and some seasoning (salt, pepper, bay leaf, garlic- whatever your in the mood for) and let simmer until veggies are tender.

I also think taco soup is very quick and easy- everyone seems to have their own favorite recipe

Quick Chili

This isn't my favorite chili recipe, but it only takes about 15 minutes and I always have the ingredients on hand.

browned ground beef
1-2 cans kidney beans
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
diced onion
chili powder to taste
salt and pepper to taste

Mix, heat and eat.

Tiny Spicy Chicken

It's not really spicy- more like sweet and sour.

3/4 c sugar
4 tbsp ketchup
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 c vinegar
1 tbsp soy sauce
* 1 undrained can pineapple tidbits (the recipe doesn't actually call for this- I just add it and really like it)

Mix all ingredients and pour over 2-3 chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces. Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes. Serve over rice.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

request: aimee's spaghetti

This is a pretty-please request for Aimee.  Will you post your famous spaghetti recipe so I don't have to call you every time I want to make it? I swear I had it written down but can't find it for the life of me.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sweet Potato Minestrone

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 large stalks celery, chopped
2 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
salt and pepper to taste
1 (28 ounce) can Italian-style diced tomatoes
5 cups vegetable broth
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 large carrots, sliced thin
1 can cut green beans
5 cloves garlic, minced

Heat oil in a soup pot over medium-high heat. Saute onion, celery, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, with the juice, broth, sweet potatoes, carrots, green beans and garlic. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes.

The sweet potatoes make this a little bit sweet (go figure), and it's actually pretty filling. You can also add a can of cannellini beans to it if you like that sorta thing.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Go to Meals- Beef Stroganoff

This is one of my favorite and easiest recipes. We'd have it a lot more often if I could just remember to thaw some hamburger before I leave for work. When I make this, I serve it with bright colored veggies- just so it is prettier.

Here's the recipe...

1 lb of ground beef (I always go as lean as I can find)
1 onion chopped
1 clove garlic
Strain the beef grease before you add...
2 cups sliced mushrooms (there aren't any in the pictures because I was out)

Saute until the onions are clear and then add

1/3 c red wine
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Continue cooking until the meat is cooked throughout.

Then add...

1/2 c sour cream
1 can Cream of Mushroom soup
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cook until heated throughout. Serve on noodles or rice.

PS if you don't cook with wine, use 1/3 of a cup of beef bouillon.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

My Go To Meals

Howdy all,

We have a few go to meals, some which I do in the crock pot in the morning when I know I have a busy day ahead.

Creamy Chicken--You can just bake this for an hour or put it in the crock pot and cook all day. I take chicken breasts and 1-2 cans of Cream or Chicken or Mushroom (whatever I have) and throw them in the crock pot with a can full of water, sprinkle with salt, pepper, maybe some powdered Italian dressing mix, and let it cook. About 20 minutes before you are ready to eat, throw in a half a block of cream cheese or a whole block if you have many chicken breasts and 2 cans of soup. At this point I take my tongs and break up the chicken, it is so tender it just comes apart easy and then stir up the mixture with cream cheese and cook for about 20 more minutes. Once it is all ready, I either pour it over rice or mashed potatoes and open a can or corn or carrots or something for the side, or a salad. Its really creamy and yummy and so easy. If you do it in the oven, just cook it for 45-60 minutes and add the cream cheese with 20 minutes left.

We also do nachos a lot for go to meals, you can do them vegetarian and just open a can of black beans or whatever kind of bean you have (refried is great too), sprinkle them on tortilla chips that are spread out on a cookie sheet, top with your favorite toppings, we do cheese, sauteed onions, sometimes add chicken or beef, then pop them in a 325 oven for a few minutes until it is all melty and yum.

Another favorite of mine is Monterrey Chicken found here
I like this because I can make twice as much as I need and then take a leftover breast and shred it for Barbecue Chicken Pizza the next day or add in some Frank's Red Sauce after you shred it and make a really yum Buffalo BBQ Chicken and serve it on a green salad with ranch, or a sandwich/wrap for a great little kick.

I agree on the omelets comment made before, they are cheap and easy and fast!

I also keep tomato soup and cheese on hand for tomato soup and drilled cheese sandwiches.

I also love to make chicken salad. I keep some cans of cooked chicken on the shelf from Sam's. They are quite good and great for quick meals. I can take a can or two of chicken and drain it, then add a can of chopped pineapple, 1/2-3/4 cup of Mayo (lite is okay), salt, and pepper and sometimes a little lemon juice. Throw that on some bread and its a great sandwich.

Another crock pot one is for soup. I take a couple of chicken breasts, about 6 cups of water, and a cup or so of dried Great White Northern Beans. I put them all in the crock pot with a medium sized can of chopped green chilis. Add spices, like cumin, Mrs. Dash, etc and just cook on high all day. There is no need to pre-soak the beans, just sort them, rinse them and put them in the crock pot. This make an easy and tasty White Bean Chicken Chili. I serve it with a dollup of sour cream and tortilla chips and shredded cheese.

Hope that helps!