Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Easy Cheesy Lasagna

This is not your ordinary, average, every day lasagna. It is more of a deconstructed lasagna. But it is super simple and super delicious!

Easy Cheesy Lasagna
Makes 4-6 Servings
Total Time: Less than 30 minutes

  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 26 ounce jar spaghetti sauce
  • 8 ounce package wide egg noodles, cooked
  • 8 ounce package shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Brown ground beef in a saucepan; drain. Stir sauce into beef; simmer for 5 minutes. Add noodles, mozzarella cheese, and cottage cheese; stir together and place in a greased 2 quart casserole dish. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese; bake and 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Basic White Sauce

This is the sauce used for the Baked Ziti. It was super easy to make. It definitely needs seasoning to it: salt, pepper, and garlic for sure. But you can do it all to your own taste. I had never really thought about making my own pasta sauces, but it does make sense. In the long run, it will be cheaper, and I won't be eating as many preservatives! And if you ever have a craving for pasta with sauce, and you don't have any in the pantry, chances are you will have all the ingredients already!!

Basic White Sauce
Makes 4 cups
Total Time: 15 minutes

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 6 tablespoons flour
  • 3 cups milk
  • salt and pepper
In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the flour and whisk with the melted butter until it forms a paste and bubbles. 

Whisk in the milk. Whisk until flour and butter have dissolved into the milk. 

Cook the sauce over medium heat for 5-6 minutes, stirring continuously. The sauce will begin to thicken, as it bubbles and cooks. To reach desired consistency, add the milk or flour, one tablespoon at a time.

Baked Ziti

I have a confession. I love pasta and I love cheese. I would put cheese on everything if that wasn't super unhealthy. Actually, I do put it on most everything that is logical if I have cheese left over. This recipe was fantastic! I did make the white sauce, and the only complaint I have is that it is kind of flavorless. Adding salt and pepper is a must. Next time I would probably add some garlic as well.  This was, however, a super simple recipe I would recommend to absolutely anyone! If I remember right, however, ziti usually has a red tomato sauce. I'm not a huge fan of that, but I know you could substitute, or mix the sauces to your own liking.

From The $5 Dinner Mom Cookbook

Baked Ziti
Total Time: 30 Minutes
Serves Four

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large pot cook the ziti according to the package directions.

Prepare the white sauce.

Once the sauce has reached the desired consistency, add the cooked pasta. Transfer to 9x13 inch baking dish. Sprinkle the cheese over the top. Bake in the preheated over for 15 minutes, or until bubbly and the cheese is golden.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Guacamole Burgers

This burger is a nice twist on your everyday, average burger. If I made them again, I honestly think I would put the cheese in between the burgers more like a juicy-lucy. As long as you like a little spice, and guacamole, I would definitely recommend this recipe!  I have started exclusively using ground turkey instead of beef in recipes. I do my best to buy the leanest turkey available. I even have been using turkey bacon!

Four Servings
Total Time: 30 minutes

Guacamole Burgers

  • 8 bacon strips
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chilies
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 4 slices Monterey Jack cheese
  • 4 sandwich buns, split and toasted
  • 1/4 cup guacamole

  • In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove to paper towels to drain. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine onion and green chilies; set aside. Shape beef into eight patties. Top half of patties with onion mixture. Cover with remaining patties and firmly press edges to seal.
  • Grill, covered, over medium heat for 5-7 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer reads 160° and juices run clear. Top each with bacon and cheese. Grill 1 minute longer or until cheese is melted. Serve on buns with guacamole. 

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tender Pork Chops & Rice

This is a super quick and easy recipe you could make on a night that you don't want to spend a lot of time on. And most likely you will have a lot of the items in your kitchen. It was very bland, so I seasoned the pork chops with seasoned salt and pepper, and the rice with salt, pepper, and garlic salt. I also used quick rice. I made it first, then returned it to the burner while stirring in the soup and mushrooms. Next time I would use real mushrooms..I just don't like the taste of canned mushrooms. I don't know if I would make this again for anything in particular..just for something quick when I don't want to spend time on dinner!

Tender Pork Chops & Rice

  • 4-6 pork chops
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 10-3/4 ounce can cream of mushroom soup
  • 4 ounce can sliced mushrooms, drained and liquid reserved
  • 2 cups long-cooking rice, uncooked
Brown pork chops lightly in oil in a skillet; drain and set aside. Combine soup, reserved liquid from mushrooms and enough water to equal 3 cups; mix well and pour into skillet. Stir in mushrooms and rice; top with pork chops. Cover and simmer for 30 to 45 minutes or until rice is tender.

Penne Chicken Casserole

I bought a new casserole recipe book. They are just so warm and yummy and easy to put together!  I thought this recipe tasted a lot like a casserole made with alfredo sauce, except it was all 'homemade.'  I didn't have the sherry so that was omitted, but it still turned out wonderful (and the day after too)!  I also just bought a combo of grated pamesan and asiago cheese, which turned out great! I also just mixed the pasta and chicken in with the soup/sour cream mixture, which is probably easier than trying to mix it in the casserole dish. The only thing I would add to this dish is some seasoning, even if it is just salt and pepper!  No picture this time since I lost my camera last weekend :(

Penne Chicken Casserole

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cubes beef bouillon
  • 4 cups cooked penne pasta
  • 1 can condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup grated asiago cheese
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup dry sherry
  • 1/2 cup dry Italian-seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup margarine or butter, melted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 2-quart casserole with nonstick cooking spray. Place chicken, water and bouillon cubes in large saucepan over medium heat. Cook 20 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in center. Drain liquid and discard; cut chicken into cubes. Combine pasta and chicken in prepared casserole.

Combine soup, sour cream, Asiago cheese, mayonnaise and sherry in medium bowl; mix well. Spoon evenly over pasta and chicken; lightly toss.

Toss bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, and margarine in small bowl. Sprinkle over casserole. Bake 30 to 45 minutes or until top is golden brown.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Brown Butter Tart with Raspberries

This was absolutely amazing! I didn't have a tart pan, so I just used a pie pan with some parchment paper. This was actually pretty easy to make, not overly sweet, and it just gives such different flavors that I loved it!  I also don't have a working food processor at the moment, so I just used a normal blender and that worked just fine.

Brown Butter Tart with Raspberries

Tart Dough:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, cut up
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups raspberries
  • 2 tablespoons currant jelly
Heat oven to 350 degrees. In food processor bowl fitted with metal blade, mix flour, powdered sugar, cinnamon, salt and butter. Process 1 minute or until dough is formed. A few drops of water may be added if necessary. On lightly floured surface roll dough to 12-inch circle. Carefully fit into 10-inch tart pan with removable bottom; trim edges. Set aside.

In heavy medium saucepan heat 3/4 cup butter over medium heat until it turns golden brown (7 to 10 minutes). Watch carefully so it does not burn. Cool slightly.

In large bowl, whisk eggs until well blended. Add sugar, flour and vanilla; whisk until blended. Add browned butter; stir until smooth. Pour into pastry shell. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until top is crisp and golden brown. Cool completely. Remove sides of tart pan. Arrange raspberries on top of tart. In small saucepan melt currant jelly; brush over raspberries.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Peanut Butter Oat Cookies

These cookies were suuuuper yummy! Easy to make, and kind of fun and different too! The recipe also says that reduced fat or generic brands of peanut butter are not recommended for this recipe!  From Taste of Home.

Peanut Butter Oak Cookies

  • 1 cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1-1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup wheat bran
  • 3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda

  • In a large bowl, cream the butter, peanut butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine the remaining ingredients; stir into creamed mixture and mix well.
  • Drop by tablespoonfuls 2 in. apart onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool for 3 minutes before removing to wire racks. Yield: 5 dozen.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Tortellini Alfredo with Roasted Peppers

This is such a simple dish. Pretty much something you could make when you don't want to take more than 15 minutes to whip something yummy up for dinner. And you should have most of these ingredients nearby (you can always substitute the type of pasta).  Also, I must admit-I love basil!

Tortellini Alfredo with Roasted Peppers from Better Homes & Garden's 365 Last Minute Meals

Tortellini Alfredo with Roasted Peppers
  • 16 ounce package frozen meat-or cheese filled tortellini
  • 10 ounce container refrigerated light Alfredo pasta sauce
  • 1 cup bottled roasted red sweet peppers, drained and cut into 1/2-inch strips
  • 1/4 cup snipped fresh basil
  • Coarsely ground black pepper
Cook tortellini according to package directions; drain well. Return tortellini to hot pan.

Gently stir Alfredo sauce and roasted sweet peppers into the hot tortellini in pan. Cook over medium heat until hot and bubbly. Stir in basil. Season to taste with black pepper.

Leftover Turkey Pot Pie

I'm obsessed with reading the Pioneer Woman's Blog.  More often than not, she posts step by step pictures that always look AMAZING. I can't believe this is the first time I've tried one of her recipes. This was so awesome!  I did make some changes to it. I didn't have heavy cream so I used milk instead. I also ran out of chicken broth so I ended up using beef broth for half of it. I also didn't feel like making my own pie crust so I caved and bought premade crusts. I put it in a 9x9 inch casserole dish.  One thing I would suggest is put more than what you think is necessary for the spices. Not that mine ended up bland, but I wish I would've added some more thyme. If you still have leftover turkey, MAKE THIS!!

Leftover Turkey Pot Pie from The Pioneer Woman

Leftover Turkey Pot Pie

  • 1 pie crust 
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup finely diced onion
  • 1/2 cup finely diced carrot
  • 1/2 cup finely diced celery
  • 2 cups leftover turkey, light and dark, diced or shredded (or both!)
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken or turkey broth
  • splash of white wine (optional)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Frozen peas (optional)
  • Fresh thyme, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Melt butter in a skillet or dutch oven. Add onion, carrots, and celery, and cook until translucent (a couple of minutes.)
Add turkey and stir. Sprinkle flour over mixture and stir. Cook over medium heat for a couple of minutes, stirring constantly.
Pour in chicken or turkey broth, stirring constantly. Splash in wine (you can leave this out if you’d like.) Pour in cream. (May add frozen peas at this point if you’d like.)
Bring to a slow boil and allow mixture to cook and thicken for a few minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste (do not underseason), and fresh or dried thyme to taste. Do one final taste at the end and add what it needs.
Pour mixture into a casserole dish or deep pie pan.
Roll out crust so that it’s about 1 inch larger than the pan you’re using.
Place the crust on top of the pot pie mixture, and press crust into the sides of the dish. Cut vents in the top of the crust.
Bake for 30 minutes or until very golden and bubbly.
Allow to cool for a little bit before serving.
Serve with a large spoon.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Grilled Shrimp Tacos

This was my Thanksgiving lunch. A little unorthodox I know, but who cares! It was definitely easy (the hardest part was skewering the shrimp), and as long as you like shrimp and you like tacos I would definitely recommend it!  The one tip in the recipe was to skewer the shrimp twice-once through the tail and fold them over and skewer the head-then you can lay them flat on the grill and they won't spin when you turn the skewer.  I really liked the green salsa I got that was recommended with this recipe. I normally don't put any kind of sauce on my tacos, but this was really good! I would suggest at least trying it!

Grilled Shrimp Tacos from Real Simple's Meals Made Easy

Grilled Shrimp Tacos
Serves 4
Total Time: 30 minutes
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and devined
  • 4 limes, quartered
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 8-inch corn tortillas
  • 3 cups shredded green cabbage
  • 1 14-16-ounce jar green (tomatillo) salsa
  • Wooden skewers, soaked in water for at least 30 minutes
In a small bowl, whisk the sour cream, mayonnaise, milk and cumin; set aside. In a separate bowl, combine the butter and garlic. Heat a grill or broiler. Rinse the shrimp and pat them dry with paper towels. Place the shrimp and lim wedges on the skewers. Brush the shrimp with garlic butter. Grill or broil until the shrimp are cooked through and the limes are browned, about 3 minutes per side. Season the shrimp with the salt. Transfer to a plate. Grill or broil the tortillas until warmed, about 30 seconds per side. Place them between clean towels to keep warm. To serve, remove the shrimp from the skewers, divide them evenly among the tortillas, and top each with the cabbage, sour cream mixture, and salsa. Serve the lime wedges on the side.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Pastry for Double Crust Pie

This is the homemade crust for the apple pie I made tonight. I don't think it was too hard, and when I have the time, I plan on making my own crust for pies!  I didn't have a pastry blender, so I just used my hands. They are apparently pretty inexpensive, so I will probably go buy one in the near future! This is also from Better Homes & Gardens.

Pastry for Double Crust Pies
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2 9-inch pie crusts

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup shortening
  • 8 to 10 tablespoons cold water
In a medium bowl stir together four and salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in shortening until pieces are pea size.

Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the water over part of the flour mixture; toss with a fork. Push moistened pastry to side of bowl. Repeat moistening flour mixture, using 1 tablespoon of the water at a time, until flour mixture is moistened. Divide pastry in half; form halves into balls.

On lightly floured surface, use your hands to slightly flatten one pastry ball. Roll it from center to edges into a circle 12 inches in diameter. 

Wrap pastry circle around the rolling pin. Unroll pastry into a 9-inch pie plate. Ease pastry into pie plate without stretching it. Trim pastry even with rim of pie plate. Transfer desired filling to pastry-lined pie plate.

Roll remaining ball into a circle 12 inches in diameter. Cut slits in pastry. Place pastry circle on filling; trim to 1/2 inch beyond edge of plate. Fold top pastry under bottom pastry. Crimp edge as desired. Bake as directed in recipes.

Apple Pie

I don't know if I have ever made a pie before by myself. As I was making this pie, I was reminded of the fifth grade. One of the perks of being a 5th grader at Greenwood Elementary was that you spent a whole day making apple pies. You and a few classmates did all of it with the help of some parents. I specifically remember my mom was one of those parents, and part of her duties was to take some of the pies home and bake them for us. In doing this, some of the juice from the apples got onto our oven and caught fire!  I honestly don't remember what our pie tasted like, but I remember that part of the story!

As far as this pie I said I've never really made one completely from scratch before. I even made the pie crust! If you didn't have the time, or didn't want to make a pie crust from scratch, you can buy the pre-made stuff form the grocery store. I think this all turned out phenomenal, and I'm super proud of myself!  Yeah, it takes a little while, but I would definitely make it again! I didn't use the lemon juice or the cranberries in this recipe. Below are also instructions if you would like to freeze the pies (before or after baking!). This is from Better Homes & Gardens New Cookbook.

Apple Pie
Total Time: 1 1/2 hours
Servings: 8 slices

  • 1 recipe pastry for double-crust pie
  • 6 cups thinly sliced, peeled cooking apples (about 2 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (optional)
  • 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries (optional)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare and roll out pastry for double crust pie. Line a 9-inch pie plate with a pastry circle.

If desired, sprinkle apples with lemon juice. In a large bowl stir together sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Add apple slices and, if desired, cranberries. Gently toss until coated.

Transfer apple mixture to the pastry-lined pie plate. Trim bottom pastry to edge of pie plate. Cut slits in remaining pastry circle; place on filling and seal. Crimp edge if desired.

If desired, brush top pastry with milk and sprinkle with additional sugar. To prevent over-browning cover edge of pie with foil. Bake for 40 minutes. Remove foil. Bake 20 minutes more or until fruit is tender and filling is bubbly. Cool on wire rack. To sere warm, let pie cool at least 2 hours.

To freeze a baked fruit pie: Let it cool completely. Place it in a freezer bag for up to 4 months. To serve, thaw the pie at room temperature.

To freeze an unbaked fruit pie: Before assembling, treat light-color fruit with ascorbic-acid color keeper. Assemble pie in a metal pie pan. Place in a freezer bag; seal, label, and freeze for up to 4 months. To bake, unwrap frozen pie; cover with foil. Bake in a 450 degree oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 375 degrees; bake 15 minutes. Uncover; bake for 55 to 60 minutes or until filling is bubbly and crust is golden.


I made this for my brother's going away part since he is leaving for Iraq next week. Scott helped! We added some lime juice and played with the measurements a little bit. Overall it is very simple, and you can customize it as you wish!  This is from Sandra Lee's Semi Homemade Cooking 2!

  • 2 large Hass avocados
  • 2 tablespoons medium salsa
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon jalapeno juice
  • Salt

Peel avocados and remove pit. Place in a bowl and mas. Stir in salsa, sour cream, and jalapeno juice. Add salt to taste.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Creamy Spring Soup

I know it's about Thanksgiving, and this soup has spring in the title, but it was very good! I also like that this recipe is slated for two servings so I didn't have to cut it in half!  This was definitely yummy and next time I would probably add some mushrooms, and minced garlic instead of the garlic powder.  And I don't know what it is, but whenever I make something with elbow macaroni, I want to add cheese to it! Some shredded cheese on the top of this soup definitely wouldn't be bad!  It is also very quick-about 25 minutes, so it is something very easy to make after work, which is even more awesome since it seems like a lot of times soup can take longer to make!

Also, looking at the soup before I added the milk, it came to me that the majority of these incredients would make a great casserole--I will definitely be trying that out some day!

Creamy Spring Soup from Taste of Home's Healthy Cooking Recipe Cards
  • 1 can reduced soduim chicken broth
  • 4 fresh asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 4 baby carrots, julienned
  • 1/2 celery rib, chopped
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • Dash garlic powder
  • Dash pepper
  • 3/4 cup cooked elbow macaroni
  • 1 can (5 1/2 ounces) evaporated milk
  • 3/4 fresh baby spinach
In a saucepan, combine the first seven ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in the macaroni, milk and spinach; heat through.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Creamy Marinated Potato Salad

I absolutely LOVE potato salad of any kind!  This one was really easy to make, and again, mostly stuff you will have in your kitchen anyway! It also has a little different taste than the typical potato salad you buy at the store!

This recipe also has some directions if you want to make it a day ahead: prepare as directed, cover and refrigerate. Moisten  with one to two tablespoons of milk if it is dry!

Creamy Marinated Potato Salad from Pillsbury's Fast & Healthy Cookbook
Creamy Marinated Potato Salad
Serves 12
Total Time: 30 minutes

  • 1 1/2 pounds small red potatoes (8 to 12 potatoes)
  • 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 hard-cooked eggs
  • 8 medium green onions, sliced (1/2 cup)
  • 1 medium stalk celery, sliced (1/2 cup)
  • 1 small red bell pepper, coarsely chopped 
  • 3/4 cup fat-free mayonnaise or salad dressing
  • 1/4 cup fat-free sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
  • 2 teaspoons yellow mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
In 4-quart saucepan or Dutch over, place potatoes and enough water to cover. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat to medium; cook about 20 minutes or just until potatoes are fork-tender. Drain potatoes; cool slightly. Cut into 1-inch cubes. Place in large nonmetal bowl. Sprinkle with vinegar and salt; toss to coat.

Peel and chop eggs. Add to potatoes with remaining salad ingredients; mix gently.

In small bowl, mix dressing ingredients. Pour over salad; mix gently to coat. If desired, garnish with additional sliced green onions.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Caramel Rolls

I was really excited to try this recipe! I love caramel/cinnamon rolls and have never made them from scratch! This recipe was very easy to do. I didn't refrigerate the rolls overnight before baking, but if you remember to do it beforehand I don't think it could hurt.  If I make these again, I would make them along with some cream cheese frosting (I"m more a fan of cinnamon rolls with the frosting than just caramel rolls). These would also probably be good with some toasted pecans.  This was taken from Kare 11's Cooking with Kare Cookbook.

Caramel Rolls
Serves 15
Prep 10 minutes  Bake 40 minutes
  • 2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream of milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 loaves frozen bread dough, thawed
  • Melted butter
In 13x9 inch baking pan, combine brown sugar, butter and cream; mix well. In small bowl mix together sugar and cinnamon; set aside.

On lightly floured board roll out bread dough to 15x6 inch rectangle; brush with melted butter. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture over butter; roll up lengthwise. Pinch seam to seal; place seam on bottom. With sharp knife, cut into 15 slices, about 1 inch thick. Place rolls over brown sugar mixture; cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake rolls for 30 to 40 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven; let stand 5 minutes. Turn out hot rolls onto plate. 

Beans and Franks Bake

At first I was very hesisitant to make this recipe. I'm normally not a huge fan of baked beans. This, however, was absolutely delicious! The cornbread topping is what definitely did me in! This was also super easy!!!

I used turkey sausage instead of normal hotdogs. This recipe is for two dishes, where you can freeze one for up to 3 months. This is for sure awesome for when you want to prepare stuff ahead of time. I just made one casserole since I didn't know if I would like it or not, but I would definitely make two in the future!

From Taste of Home's Easy Back to School Meals

Beans and Franks Bake
Makes 2 casseroles-8 servings
Prep 20 minutes  Bake 40 minutes
  • 2 packages (8-1/2 ounces each) corn bread/muffin mix
  • 1 can (28 ounces) baked beans
  • 4 hot dogs, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 1/2 pound sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
Prepare corn bread batter according to package directions; set aside. In a large bowl, combine the beans, hot dogs, bacon, ketchup, brown sugar and onion. Transfer to two greased 8-in. square baking dishes. Sprinkle with cheese; top with corn bread batter.

Cover and freeze one casserole for up to 3 months. Bake the second casserole, uncovered, at 350° for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.

To use frozen casserole: Remove from the freezer 30 minutes before baking. Cover and bake at 350° for 40 minutes. Uncover; bake 15-20 minutes longer or until heated through.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Feta Brunch Bake

 I have had a huge craving for eggs recently, so I was excited to make this recipe! It turned out great! If I made it in the future I would definitely add mushrooms (just 'cause I like them and they go well with everything), and probably some diced ham as long as no one was looking for a vegetarian dish.  I forgot my camera in my car, so no picture this time-sorry! Also, I finally remembered to cut the recipe in half this time (but I put the original recipe below), so I don't have  TON of left overs!

Feta Brunch Bake
  •  1 red bell pepper
  • 2 bags (10 ounces each) fresh spinach, stemmed
  • 6 eggs
  • 6 ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried dill weed
  • Dash black pepper
Preheat broiler. Place bell pepper on foil-lined broiler pan. Broil, 4 inches form heat, 15 to 20 minutes or until blacked on all sides, turning every 5 minutes with tongs. Place in paper bag; close bag and set aside to cool about 15 to 20 minutes. To peel pepper, cut around core, twist, and remove. Cut in half and rub off skin; rinse under cold water. Cut into 1/2-inch pieces.

Place 1 quart water in 2-quart saucepan over high heat; bring to a boil. Add spinach. Return to a boil; boil 2 to 2 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain; immediately plunge spinach into cold water. Drain; let stand until cool enough to handle. Squeeze spinach to remove excess water; finely chop.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 1 quart baking dish. Beat eggs in large bowl with electric mixer at medium speed until foamy. Stir in spinach, bell pepper, cheese, onion, parsley, dill and black pepper. Pour egg mixture into prepared dish. Bake 20 minutes or until set. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Garnish as desired.

Total Time: 40 minutes
Serves 4

Parmesan-Crusted Chicken Cutlets

My parents always made Parmesan chicken when I was a kid and I always got sick of it. I don't actually know how they made it, but I think it was similar to this.  I really like this recipe because most of the time, you will have all of these ingredients in your cupboard!  I would definitely either buy the cutlets or  flatten chicken breasts for this recipe. I had some problems with the outside getting burnt while the inside was still pink. Other than that, it was great! This was from Real Simple's 'Meals Made Easy' cookbook.

Parmesan-Crusted Chicken Cutlets
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (optional)
  • 2 1/4 cups (9 ounces) grated Parmesan 
  • 1 cup dried bread crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds chicken cutlets
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
In a shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs and mustard (if using). In a separate bowl, combine 2 cups of the Parmesan, the bread crumbs, salt, and pepper. Rinse the chicken and pat it dry with paper towels. Dip one of the cutlets into the egg mixture, allowing any excess to drip off, then coat it in the bread-crumb mixture. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with the remaining chicken, batter, and bread-crumb mixture. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add half of the cutlets. Cook, turning once, until browned and cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate. Carefully wipe out the skillet, add 2 more tablespoons of the oil, and repeat with remaining cutlets.

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: serves 4

Spaghetti with Beef and Mushroom Sauce

This recipe was simple and a little twist on typical beef sauce. It did, however, lack a little flavor. I definitely would add seasoned salt and garlic the next time I make this.  I prefer real mushrooms as opposed to cream of mushroom, and the cream made the sauce kind of pale, which made it look a little less appetizing. It still tasted good though!

Spaghetti with Beef and Mushroom Sauce

  • 1 pound  lean ground beef
  • 1/2 cup  chopped onion
  • 1 10-3/4-ounce can  condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 15-ounce can  tomato sauce
  • 1 4 -ounce can  sliced mushrooms, drained (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon  dried Italian seasoning, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon  black pepper
  • 12 ounces  dried spaghetti
  • Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
In a large saucepan cook the ground beef and onion until meat is brown and onion is tender. Drain. Stir in the mushroom soup, tomato sauce, mushrooms (if desired), Italian seasoning, and pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, cook spaghetti according to package directions. Drain. Serve sauce over hot spaghetti. If desired, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Bake Time: 20 minutes
Serving Size: 6 servings

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Creamy Phyllo Cheese Straws in Pesto

This was the first time I used a recipe from Sandra Lee's Semi-Homemade Cooking 2 that I got for my birthday.  I wasn't sure what Phyllo dough was, so I looked it up on Wikipedia!  The dough was a little tough to work with as it is so thin. I thought the filling was a little bland-I might add some garlic, or even just some pepper, next time. I also rolled mine too thick, but I wasn't serving them to anyone special so I wasn't worried!  I don't quite know if I'd make them again, but if anyone else tries please give me your feed back!  The reviews on the Food Network's Website (where Sandra Lee has a TV show) gave it 3/5 stars.

I don't have a picture, because mine don't look very good and the picture in the cookbook is fantastic. However, I can't find that picture online!

Creamy Phyllo Cheese Straws in Pesto
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 box phyllo dough, thawed
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, melted
  • Store-bought pesto, for dipping

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, lightly beaten egg, Parmesan, and salt. Stir to combine. Spoon mixture into a plastic zip-top bag. Set aside. To use as a pastry bag, cut corner off bag to make a 1/4-inch diameter opening.

Lay out thawed phyllo dough. Working quickly to keep dough from drying out: brush top sheet with melted butter, pipe cheese filling along long edge of phyllo 1/2-inch from each end. Fold over ends to seal in filling and roll up straw. Repeat with remaining sheets of phyllo and place on a baking sheet. Bake until golden, about 10 minutes.

Serve warm with pesto for dipping.

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Bake Time: 12 minutes
Serves: 36 straws

Savory Ham Wraps

POST #100!

I'm strangely excited about that!

I made this recipe about a week ago. It is super easy and you can make the mayo (and the wraps) the night before.  The mayo was a little sweet for my taste, but not so overwhelming that it was bad. I really liked this because it was a nice change from normal mayo! I'll definitely be making it again.  The recipe is for 2 servings, which is perfect, especially since the mayo has some perishable foods that you don't want to leave sitting forever!

I omitted the tomato because I'm not a tomato fan. I also used cheddar instead of swiss, but that really isn't the main point of the dish!

Savory Ham Wraps
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon prepared mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon celery seed
  • Dash salt
  • 2 flour tortillas (10 inches), room temperature
  • 1/4 pound thinly sliced deli ham
  • 1/3 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 2/3 cup shredded lettuce
  • 1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 1 green onion, chopped
In a small bowl, whisk the first six ingredients; spread evenly over each tortilla. Layer with ham and cheese. Top with lettuce, tomato and onion. Roll up tightly; secure with toothpicks if desired.

Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Apple-Cranberry Salad

So I forgot to buy the dried cranberries, which I was kind of upset about.  But I tried it anyway. I was super excited to try the poppyseed dressing--it was amazing! And fat free! I made a much smaller version of this and ate the rest of the apple as part of lunch. This would be great during a summer party or birthday, even adding some almonds to add a little extra crunch, or some grapes for some extra fruit! Plus it takes less than 15 minutes to make!

Apple-Cranberry Salad from Pillsbury
Apple-Cranberry Salad
  • 5 cups torn romaine lettuce
  • 1 medium unpeeled apple, diced (1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions (4 medium)
  • 1/3 cup refrigerated poppy seed dressing
 In large serving bowl, place lettuce, apple, cranberries and onions.

Pour dressing over salad; toss to coat.

De-Lightful Tuna Casserole

This casserole was quick and easy to make-probably a new one of my favorites! I used way more mushrooms that it originally called for-but I love mushrooms! I also added green onions to the dish, since I had some extra laying around.  I didn't have any shredded cheddar, so I used mozzarella instead. I also had to use Kraft Macaroni & Cheese noodles, since I went to the gas station to buy noodles. Since I had the cheese packet, and a little less cheese than the recipe called for, I added the cheese packet. I can't complain!

De-Lightful Tuna Casserole from Taste of Home
De-Lightful Tuna Casserole
  • 1 package (7 ounces) elbow macaroni
  • 1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup fat-free milk
  • 1 can (6 ounces) light water packed tuna, drained and flaked
  • 2 tablespoons diced pimientos
  • 3 tablespoons dried minced onions
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup crushed cornflakes
Cook macaroni according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the soup, mushrooms, cheese, milk, tuna, pimientos onion, mustard and salt. Drain macaroni; add to tuna mixture and mix well.

Transfer to a 2 quart baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with cornflakes. Bake, uncovered at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until bubbly.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

New German Potato Salad

I was really excited to try this recipe, since normally when you think potato salad you think of the mayo/mustard seasoning type. This did not turn out quite like I wanted it to. The combination of the rice vinegar and sugar made it very sweet. I actually ended up using quite a bit of salt and pepper to cut the sweetness. I may play around with this, but I'm not totally sure if I really want to.  If anyone else has any ideas let me know!

New German Potato Salad-from Cooking with Kare Volume 1

New German Potato Salad
  • 8 new red potatoes
  • 2 ounces smoked turkey sausage, sliced
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 3/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon bacon bits
In 2-quart saucepan cook potatoes in boiling water until tender, about 15-20 minutes. Drain; cool slightly. Slice while still warm. In large bowl toss together potatoes, sausage and green onions. In medium skillet heat vinegar, sugar and bacon bits over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium; simmer 3 minutes or until slightly thickened. Stir in potato mixture; cook until heated through.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Chicken & Stuffing Bake

I normally do not like stuffing. I just don't like the consistency. I, however, don't mind it when it is in a casserole of some sort. I was excited to try this recipe as it was super easy, but it wasn't excellent. It seemed a little dry to me, and I would honestly probably add another can of cream of mushroom soup to it and mix that with the stuffing instead of putting the stuffing on the bottom of the dish, and chicken on top.  I did add cheese, bread crumbs, and onions which only added to the dish. I'll probably play around with this and try it again!

Chicken & Stuffing Bake
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon margarine
  • 4 cups herb-flavored stuffing mix
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, halved
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 10 3/4 ounce can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
Bring water and margarine to a boil in a large saucepan; remove from heat. Stir in stuffing mix. Spoon mixture across center of a lightly greased 3-quart casserole dish. Arrange chicken on each side of stuffing. Sprinkle with paprika; set aside. Combine soup, milk and parsley; pour over chicken. Bake, covered at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Uncover; bake for an additional 15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Steak au Poivre

I had no idea what 'au Poivre' meant, so I looked it up on Wikipedia.  The recipe from Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook is almost exactly the same!  I thought it was very simple and tasty.  I wish I would've bought some Peppercorn, because I think it would've added more flavor, but regular black pepper was good too.  I used all beef broth instead of the brandy, just because I didn't want to spend more money than I had to!  I also added some onions to the sauce, and they only added to the flavor!  I wish I would have let the sauce reduce a little bit more for the consistency (maybe boil for 8 minutes instead of 5), but like I said, it still tasted good!

Steak au Poivre
  •  1 tablespoon cracked black pepper (peppercorn)
  • 4 beef tenderloin steaks 
  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1/4 cup brandy or beef broth
  • 1/4 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream (no substitutes)
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard

Use your fingers to press the pper onto both sides of the steaks. In a large skillet cook steaks in hot butter over medium heat to desired doneness, turning once. Transfer steaks to a serving platter, reserving drippings in skillet; keep warm.

Remove skillet from burner and allow tos tand for 1 minute. For sauce, combine brandy and beef broth (or all beef broth); carefully stir into drippings in skillet, scraping up crusty browned bits. Stir in whipping cream and mustard. Bring to boiling. Boil gently, uncovered, over medium heat for 5-6 minutes or until mixture is reduced to 1/2 cup, stirring occasionally. Spoon sauce over steaks to serve.

Chicken with Asparagus

When I was younger (probably middle school aged), my parents made some protein for dinner and had couscous as a side. From the first time I tried it, I told them I hated it and never wanted to eat it again. I even remember one time when I made my mom make a side of mashed potatoes especially for me because I didn't want the couscous. This recipe calls for couscous as a side dish, and I hestitated to buy it, but decided to do it. If I still didn't like it, I would know and never buy it again. I simply cannot figure out why I didn't like couscous as a kid!  It's fantastic and easy to make!  I also tagged this as gluten-free as long as you don't make the couscous!

Now for the rest of the recipe: I've never cooked asparagus before. This was super simple and it turned out great. I probably would've seasoned it a little bit, but I still can't complain.  The sauce is very simple, and I added mushrooms and onions.  Next time I might add a clove of garlic too.  This is super easy and quick and I would highly recommend it to ANYONE!

Chicken with Asparagus
  • 1 pound fresh asparagus spears
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1 cup water
  • 10.75 ounce can condensed cream of chicken or cream of asparagus soup
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 cups hot cooked couscous
 Snap off and discard woody bases from asparagus. Set asparagus aside.

Lightly coat a large nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken; reduce heat to medium. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until no longer pink, turning occasionally to brown evenly. Remove chicken from skillet; cover to keep warm.

In the same skillet combine asapargus and water. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 3-5 minutes or until asparagus is crisp-tender. Drain.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan combine chicken soup, chicken broth, and lemon juice. Cook and stir until heated through. Serve sauce with chicken, asparagus and hot couscous.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Chicken Burritos

This recipe is the second meal of Salsa Chicken, which I made a few weeks ago.  The chicken is absolutely amazing, which is probably part of why I loved these burritos so much.  I followed the recipe pretty much to a t, except I added some cheese ('cause it's always better with cheese!) and served them with sour cream.  Next time, I might make some guacamole too! I'll definitely make the salsa chicken again, and these burritos again as well!!  And you should try them too--they're both FANTASTIC!

Chicken Burritos
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 container Salsa Chicken, thawed if frozen
  • 2/3 cup chicken broth
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 flour tortillas (8-10 inches in diameter)
  • 1 tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups salsa, if desired
Heat oven to 500 degrees. Heat oil in 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Cook onion and garlic in oil about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onion is crisp-tender.

Stir in chicken broth, chili powder, salt and pepper; reduce heat. Cook about 10 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

Spoon about 1/3 cup of the chicken mixture onto center of each tortilla. Fold one end of tortilla up about 1 inch over mixture; fold right and left sides over folded end, overlapping. Fold remaining end down. Place seam side down on ungreased cookie sheet. Brush with butter.

Bake 8-10 minutes or until tortillas begin to brown and filling is hot. Serve with salsa.

Ranch Coleslaw

I am normally not a coleslaw fan, so I was hesitant to try this dish. I found it absolutely delicious!  The flavor combinations are amazing and it is super easy to make!  Just buy some coleslaw at the grocery deli and the rest, you probably have in the pantry (with maybe the exception of the jalapeno).  I only used one half of a jalapeno because I am not a huge fan of them, but if you enjoy the spice, I would recommend a whole one!

Ranch Coleslaw
  • 3 cups coleslaw mix
  • 1/4 cup Mexicorn, drained
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped red onion
  • 1 tablspoon minced fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup ranch salad dressing
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
In a large bowl, combine the first six ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk the salad dressing, lime juice, and cumin. Pour over the coleslaw, toss to coat. Refrigerate until serving.

Grilled Fish with Bruschetta

So I don't have a grill, but I got the Taste of Home Best Barbeque book as a trial offer, so I try to make as much as I can anyway.  The fish cooked fine on the griddle, but the Bruschetta did not turn out whatsoever. I'm still putting the recipe here, as I still think this would be very good!  It is also gluten-free if you don't make the bruschetta!

I was not particularly fond of the flavor of the fish-it was just too sweet for me. But I decided to post it as someone might have another idea. You may like it anyway, it wasn't terrible, just not my taste!

Grilled Fish with Bruschetta-adapted from Taste of Home
Total Time: 20 Minutes
Serves 4
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 6 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
  • 3 red snapper fillets (6 ounces each) I used Tilapia
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 8 slices French bread (1 inch thick)
  • 8 ounces Havarti cheese, sliced 
  • 2 cups salsa
In a small skillet over medium heat, cook and stir the onion, lime juice, brown sugar, butter and mustard for 4-5 minutes or until onion is tender and liquid is almost evaporated.

Place each fillet on a double thickeness of heavy-duty foil. Top with onion mixture. Fold foil over fish and seal tightly. Grill, covered, over medium heat for 6-8 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Meanwhile, brush oil over both sides of bread. Grill for 30-60 seconds on each side or until lightly browned. Top each slice of bread with a slice of cheese; grill 1 minute longer or until the cheese is melted. Top with salsa.

Open foil packets carefully to allow steam to escape. Serve fish with bruschetta.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Chard-Topped Steaks

I had never tried Swiss Chard before. I honestly didn't seem bad-a lot like spinach actually!

This recipe was not as good as I wanted it to be, but I feel as though it can be fixed. I over cooked the steak for my preferences and that's just a technicality.  There was, however, too much thyme for my liking.  I'm almost thinking a different spice would be more fitting, but I haven't quite figured out what yet.

 From Better Homes & Gardens 365 Last-Minute Meals
Chard-Topped Steaks
  • 1 slice bacon
  • 4 beef tenderloin steaks, cut 1 inch thick (about 1 pound)
  • 3 cups very thinly sliced fresh Swiss chard leaves (4 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

In a large skillet cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon from skillet, reserving drippings. Crumble bacon; set aside. Remove skillet from heat; set aside.

Preheat broiler. Trim fat from steaks. Sprinkle steaks with salt and black pepper. Place steaks on the unheated rack of a broiler pan. Broil 3-4 inches from the heat for 12-14 minutes for medium rare, turning halfway once through broiling.

Meanwhile, cook and stir Swiss chard in drippings in skillet over medium heat for 4-6 minutes or just until tender. Stir in the crumbled bacon, thyme, salt, and pepper. To serve, spoon Swiss chard mixture on top of steaks.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Salsa Chicken

This recipe is super easy, and made with stuff you most likely have in your kitchen already! It tastes great too, and you can turn them into burritos the next day (which I will be doing tomorrow), that are sure to be delicious!
Salsa Chicken

  • 12 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 2 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup thick and chunky salsa
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (11 ounces) whole kernel corn, drained
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
Sprinkle chicken with salt. Heat oil in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Cook chicken in oil about 4 minutes, turning once, until brown.

Mix salsa, beans and corn in 3 1/2-5 quart slow cooker. Top with chicken.

Cover and cook on low heat setting 7-9 hours or until juice of chicken is no longer pink when centers of thickest pieces are cut.

Sprinkle chicken and vegetables with cilantro.

Egg Salad English Muffins

I really enjoyed the concept of this breakfast dish. It is basically something you could put together the night before, and throw in the oven in the morning. However, it has a very big mustard taste which is not for me at all. If I made this in the future, I would play around with the flavors somehow...just haven't figured that out yet.

Egg Salad English Muffin

  • 3 hard-cooked eggs
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 teaspoon prepared mustard
  • 2 English muffins, split and toasted
  • 4 slices Canadian bacon
  • 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
In a small bowl, combine the eggs, mayonnaise and mustard. Place English muffins cut side up on an ungreased baking sheet. Top each with a slice of Canadian bacon, 1/4 cup egg mixture and cheddar cheese.

Bake at 350° for 6-8 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Chicken-Potato Chowder

I found this recipe in Pillsbury's Fast & Healthy Cookbook, and it is originally called Smoked Turkey-Potato Chowder, but I had chicken on hand so I used that instead! I also added some green beans and green onions to the mix.  This recipe is good, but it doesn't have much flavor so I had to add more pepper and some seasoned salt to the soup.  It is definitely super easy and quick to make! The picture is from since I left my camera in my car..

Chicken-Potato Chowder
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup sliced celery (2 medium stalks)
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 can chicken broth
  • 3 cups frozen potatoes O'Brien with onions and peppers
  • 6 ounces smoked turkey breast
  • 1 cup frozen sweet peas
  • 2 cups fat-free milk
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
In 3-quart saucepan, melt better over medium heat. Add celery; cook 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently, until crisp-tender.

Stir in flour and pepper until well blended. Increase heat to medium-high; gradually stir in broth, cooking and stirring until bubbly and thickened.

Stir in potatoes, turkey breast, peas, and milk. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender. Stir in parsley during last 2 minutes of cook time.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Banana Chocolate Cake

This is an absolutely wonderful change from banana bread. If you use the sugar substitute (I used real sugar), there can't be that much difference in the nutritional value. This was a super easy cake recipe, and delicious even without frosting (although adding a good frosting definitely wouldn't hurt). It really tastes like banana bread with a little bit of chocolate added to it! Sorry the picture sucks but I totally forgot about it-from Taste of Home's Healthy Cooking Recipe Cards...

Banana Chocolate Cake
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • Sugar substitute equivalent to 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup nonfat dry milk powder
  • 3 tablespoons baking cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 medium ripe bananas, mashed
  • 3/4 teaspoon confectioners' sugar
In a large bowl, cream the butter, sugar substitute and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in water and vanilla. Combine the flour, dry milk powder, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to the creamed mixture just until combined. Stir in bananas.

Pour into a 9-in. square baking pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375° for 23-28 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean and edges of cake are just starting to pull away from sides of pan. Cool on a wire rack. Dust with confectioners' sugar. 

Yield: 12 servings.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Planet Hollywood's Creole Mustard Sauce

I made this sauce to go with Planet Hollywood's Chicken Crunch. I haven't totally decided how I feel about this recipe. It isn't bad, but it's not my favorite either. I might play around with it and try to make it better. I used dijon mustard instead of creole since that was what I had on hand. I also omitted the onion and celery.

Planet Hollywood's Creole Mustard Sauce
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup Creole mustard or country-style mustard
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon chopped celery
  • 2 tablespoons prepared mustard
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Wocestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
In a medium bowl combine all ingredients; mix well. Season to taste with salt and cayenne pepper. Store in refrigerator.


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