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Each Saturday morning, Jean  provides our listeners with a number of recipes on Kitchen Medley.  These recipes are published weekly on this site.  (click here) Selected recipes featured during the month are combined into a single document  and copies are available at the Cub Store in Buffalo, The Marketplace in Annandale and Cokato.  

 

      

November 18, 2017

Beef and Guinness Stew

4 slices bacon, cut into small pieces

1/4 c tomato paste

2 1/2 lbs boneless beef chuck, cut into 2-in pieces

4 sprigs fresh thyme

1 tsp salt, or to taste

3 carrots, cut into 1-in pieces

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

2 stalks celery, cut into 1-in pieces

2 onions, coarsely chopped

1 tsp white sugar

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper, or to taste

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 1/2 c chicken stock, or as needed to cover

1 can (14.9 oz) dark beer (e.g. Guinness)

4 c mashed potatoes, optional

Cook and stir bacon in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat until bacon is browned and crisp, 3-4 minutes. Turn off heat and transfer bacon into a large stew pot, reserving bacon fat in the skillet. Season beef chuck cubes generously with 1 teaspoon salt and black pepper to taste. Turn heat to high under skillet and sear beef pieces in the hot fat on both sides until browned, about 5 minutes. Place beef in stew pot with bacon, leaving fat in skillet. Turn heat down to medium; cook and stir onions in the retained fat in the skillet until lightly browned, 5-8 minutes; season with a large pinch of salt. Cook garlic with onions until soft, about 1 minute; pour beer into skillet and stir with a wooden spoon, scraping up and dissolving any browned bits of food into the liquid. Pour cooking liquid from skillet into the stew pot. Stir in tomato paste, thyme sprigs, carrots, celery, sugar, black pepper, and enough chicken broth to cover. Bring stew to a gentle simmer, stirring to combine; reduce heat to low and cover pot. Simmer stew until beef is fork-tender, about 2 hours. Stir stew occasionally and skim fat or foam if desired. Remove cover and raise heat to medium-high. Bring stew to a low boil and cook until stew has slightly thickened, 15-20 minutes. Remove and discard thyme sprigs and adjust salt and pepper to taste. Arrange mashed potatoes in a ring in a serving bowl; ladle stew into the center of the potatoes.

Colcannon (Cabbage and Potatoes)**

2 1/2 lb potatoes, peeled and cubed

1/2 c milk

4 slices bacon

salt and pepper, to taste

1/2 small head cabbage, chopped

1/4 c butter, melted

1 large onion, chopped

Place potatoes in a saucepan with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, and cook for 15-20 minutes, until tender. Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, reserving drippings, crumble and set aside. In the reserved drippings, saute the cabbage and onion until soft and translucent. Drain the cooked potatoes, mash with milk and season with salt and pepper. Fold in the bacon, cabbage, and onions, then transfer the mixture to a large serving bowl. Make a well in the center, and pour in the melted butter. Serve immediately.

Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

4 c chicken broth

1/2 tsp salt

2 c water

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

2 cooked, boneless chicken breast halves, shredded

3/4 c all-purpose flour

1 pkg (4.5 oz) quick cooking long grain and

1/2 c butter

wild rice w/seasoning packet

2 c heavy cream

In a large pot over medium heat, combine broth, water and chicken. Bring just to boiling, then stir in rice, reserving seasoning packet. Cover and remove from heat. In a small bowl, combine salt, pepper and flour. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in contents of seasoning packet until mixture is bubbly. Reduce heat to low, then stir in flour mixture by tablespoons, to form a roux. Whisk in cream, a little at a time, until fully incorporated and smooth. Cook until thickened, 5 minutes. Stir cream mixture into broth and rice. Cook over medium heat until heated through, 10-15 minutes.

Classic American Goulash**

2 lb lean ground beef

3 Tbs soy sauce

2 large yellow onions, chopped

2 Tbs dried Italian herb seasoning

3 cloves garlic, chopped

3 bay leaves

3 c water

1 Tbs seasoned salt, or to taste

2 cans (15 oz) tomato sauce

2 c uncooked elbow macaroni

2 cans (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes

Cook and stir the ground beef in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, breaking the meat up as it cooks, until the meat is no longer pink and has started to brown, about 10 minutes. Skim off excess fat, and stir in the onions and garlic. Cook and stir the meat mixture until the onions are translucent, about 10 more minutes. Stir water, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, soy sauce, Italian seasoning, bay leaves, and seasoned salt into the meat mixture and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir macaroni into the mixture, cover, and simmer over low heat until the pasta is tender, about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, discard bay leaves, and serve.

November 11, 2017

Chicago Hot Dog

1 all-beef hot dog

4 tomato wedges

1 poppy seed hot dog bun

1 dill pickle spear

1 Tbs yellow mustard

2 sport peppers (or pickled serrano peppers)

1 tsp sweet green pickle relish

1 dash celery salt

1 Tbs chopped onion

Bring a pot of water to a boil. Reduce heat to low, place hot dog in water, and cook 5 minutes or until done. Remove hot dog and set aside. Carefully place a steamer basket into the pot and steam the hot dog bun 2 minutes or until warm. Place hot dog in the steamed bun. Pile on the toppings in this order: yellow mustard, sweet green pickle relish, onion, tomato wedges, pickle spear, sport or serrano peppers, and celery salt. The tomatoes should be nestled between the hot dog and the top of the bun. Place the pickle between the hot dog and the bottom of the bun. Forget the ketchup!

Authentic Chicago Pizza Dough

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast

3 c all-purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp white sugar

1/2 c corn oil

1 1/8 c warm water (110 to 115 degrees)

1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

Dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water in a bowl. Let stand for 5-10 minutes until the yeast softens and begins to form a creamy foam. Combine yeast mixture, flour, corn oil, and kosher salt in a large stand mixer with a hook attachment; knead until dough holds together but is still slightly sticky, about 2 minutes. Form dough into a ball and transfer to a buttered bowl, turning to coat. Cover bowl with a towel and allow dough to rise at room temperature until double in size, 6 hours. Punch down dough and let rest for 10-15 minutes.

Chicago Style Pan Pizza

Pizza Dough

1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes, drained

1 lb bulk Italian sausage

3/4 tsp dried oregano

2 c mozzarella cheese, shredded

1/2 tsp salt

8 oz sliced mushrooms

1/4 tsp fennel seed

1 small onion, chopped

1/4 tsp garlic powder

2 tsp olive oil

1/2 c freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of a greased 9x13 inch baking dish, or large size deep dish pizza pan. Crumble the sausage into a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir until evenly browned. Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon and sprinkle over the dough crust. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese evenly over the sausage. Add mushrooms and onion to the skillet, cook and stir until the onion is tender. Stir in the tomatoes, oregano, salt, fennel seed and garlic powder. Spoon over the mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the top. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the crust is golden.

Famous Chicago Horseshoe Sandwich

1 bag (9 oz) frozen french fries

2 c half-and-half

1 lb ground beef

2 c shredded cheddar cheese

4 slices bread, toasted

salt and ground pepper, to taste

1/2 c butter

hot sauce, to taste

1/4 c all-purpose flour

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spread french fries out on a baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden brown. Meanwhile, divide the ground beef into four equal parts and form into patties. Fry the patties in a large skillet over medium-high heat until well done, about 4 minutes per side. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk in the flour. Cook while stirring constantly for 4 minutes to cook out the flavor of raw flour. Gradually whisk in the half-and-half so that no lumps form. Bring to a simmer then remove from the heat and add the cheese; stir until melted. Season with salt, pepper, and hot sauce to taste. Place 2 slices of toasted bread onto 2 dinner plates and top each slice with a hamburger patty. Top each patty with cooked french fries. Pour the cheese sauce on top of everything and serve immediately.

Chicago Style New York Strip**

1 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

2 Tbs apricot preserves

1 clove garlic, minced

2 (1/2 lb) New York strip steaks, 1 inch thick

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

salt and pepper, to taste

1/2 tsp white sugar

In a shallow glass dish, mix the olive oil, garlic, cinnamon, sugar, and apricot preserves. Mix well, as the preserves tend to stick until warm. With a knife, make several shallow slashes in both sides of the steaks. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place steaks in the dish with the sauce, and turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Preheat grill for high heat. Lightly oil the grill grate. Place steaks on the grill, and discard any remaining sauce. Grill steaks 10 minutes, turning occasionally, or to desired doneness.

November 4, 2017

Grandma's Shrimp Gumbo

1 lb smoked sausage links, cut into 1/4 in slices

2 Tbs chopped fresh parsley

1/4 lb bacon, chopped

2 Tbs minced garlic

2 c chopped okra

2 c water

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes w/green chiles

salt, to taste

1/2 c unsalted butter

ground black pepper, to taste

2/3 c all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

2 c chopped onion

1 tsp dried thyme

1/2 c chopped green onions

2 bay leaves

2/3 c finely chopped green bell pepper

6 c water

2/3 c finely chopped celery

2 lbs uncooked medium shrimp, peeled, deveined

Brown the sausage in a skillet over medium heat, discard the fat in the skillet, and drain the sausage slices on paper towels to absorb any excess grease. Set the sausage aside. Cook and stir the chopped bacon in the skillet until crisp, 6-8 minutes, remove the bacon, and set aside. Stir the okra into the hot bacon drippings, and cook and stir until the okra is tender, about 5 minutes. Drain the okra in a colander, and discard bacon drippings. Place the okra and diced tomatoes in a saucepan over medium heat, and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer the okra mixture for about 10 minutes. In a large soup pot, melt the butter over medium heat, and cook and stir the onion, green onions, green pepper, celery, parsley, and garlic until the onion begins to turn brown, about 10 minutes. Remove the vegetables but leave the butter in the pot. Stir in the flour, reduce heat to low, and cook the roux, stirring constantly, until it turns the color of milk chocolate, 30-45 minutes. Do not let the roux burn. When the roux reaches its correct color, whisk in 2 cups of water. Raise the heat to medium; stir in salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, thyme, and bay leaves, bring the mixture to a boil, and stir in the sausage, bacon, okra-tomato mixture, and 6 more cups of water. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer the gumbo, stirring occasionally, until the soup has thickened and the flavors are blended, about 45 minutes. Stir in the shrimp, and simmer until they turn pink and opaque, 6-8 more minutes. Discard bay leaves and adjust the seasonings, if desired, before serving.

Chicken Creole Gumbo Style**

1/4 c oil for frying

2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1/4 c all-purpose flour

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 tsp soy sauce

1 onion, chopped

1 tsp white sugar

2 c cooked, chopped chicken breast meat

1/2 tsp salt

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes w green chiles

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1 can (4.5 oz) sliced mushrooms, drained

3 dashes hot sauce

2 Tbs chopped fresh parsley

Heat oil in a large skillet over high heat. Stir in flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes or until mixture is evenly browned. Reduce heat to low and stir in bell pepper and onion. Cook 10-15 minutes, or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add chicken, tomatoes with green chile peppers, mushrooms, parsley, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, soy sauce, sugar, salt, pepper and hot sauce. Stir together, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

Slow Cooker Jambalaya

1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut

1 c chicken broth

into 1 inch cubes

2 tsp dried oregano

1 lb andouille sausage, sliced

2 tsp dried parsley

1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes

2 tsp Cajun seasoning

1 large onion, chopped

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 large green bell pepper, chopped

1/2 tsp dried thyme

1 c chopped celery

1 lb frozen cooked shrimp w/o tails

In a slow cooker, mix the chicken, sausage, tomatoes with juice, onion, green bell pepper, celery, and broth. Season with oregano, parsley, Cajun seasoning, cayenne pepper, and thyme. Cover, and cook 7-8 hours on Low, or 3-4 hours on High. Stir in the shrimp during the last 30 minutes of cook time.

Louisiana Red Beans and Rice**

1 lb dry kidney beans

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

1/4 c olive oil

1 tsp dried thyme

1 large onion, chopped

1/4 tsp dried sage

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 Tbs dried parsley

2 Tbs minced garlic

1 tsp Cajun seasoning

2 stalks celery, chopped

1 lb andouille sausage, sliced

6 c water

4 c water

2 bay leaves

2 c long grain white rice

Rinse beans, and then soak in a large pot of water overnight. In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Cook onion, bell pepper, garlic, and celery in olive oil for 3-4 minutes. Rinse beans, and transfer to a large pot with 6 cups water. Stir cooked vegetables into beans. Season with bay leaves, cayenne pepper, thyme, sage, parsley, and Cajun seasoning. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for 2 1/2 hours. Stir sausage into beans, and continue to simmer for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the rice. In a saucepan, bring water and rice to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Serve beans over steamed white rice.

October 28, 2017

 

Spooky Witch's Fingers

1 c butter, softened

2 2/3 c all-purpose flour

1 c confectioners' sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1 egg

1 tsp salt

1 tsp almond extract

3/4 c whole almonds

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tube (.75 oz) red decorating gel

Combine the butter, sugar, egg, almond extract, and vanilla extract in a mixing bowl. Beat together with an electric mixer; gradually add the flour, baking powder, and salt, continually beating; refrigerate 20-30 minutes. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease baking sheets. Remove dough from refrigerator in small amounts. Scoop one heaping teaspoon at a time onto a piece of waxed paper. Use the waxed paper to roll the dough into a thin finger-shaped cookie. Press one almond into one end of each cookie to give the appearance of a long fingernail. Squeeze cookie near the tip and again near the center of each to give the impression of knuckles. You can also cut into the dough with a sharp knife at the same points to help give a more finger-like appearance. Arrange the shaped cookies on the baking sheets. Bake in the preheated oven until the cookies are slightly golden in color, 20-25 minutes. Remove the almond from the end of each cookie; squeeze a small amount of red decorating gel into the cavity; replace the almond to cause the gel to ooze out around the tip of the cookie.

Flayed Man Cheese Ball**

1 plastic face mask from crafts store

6 oz shredded cheddar cheese

2 pkgs (3 oz ea) prosciutto

6 oz shredded Havarti cheese

2 pimento-stuffed green olives

1/2 c pitted green olives, chopped

24 oz cream cheese, softened

1/4 c roasted red peppers, drained and chopped

Lightly coat plastic face mask with cooking spray. Line the face mask with plastic wrap, taking care to press it down fully into the nose and eyes. Reserve two or three slices of prosciutto and set aside. Tear the remaining slices of prosciutto into strips and lay them into the mask to form the "muscle tissue." Start around the eyes, leaving eyes blank, and then create the cheeks, chin, and forehead. Take the two whole green olives and position them in the eye holes, pimento side-down. Set the mask aside. Combine the softened cream cheese, cheddar, and Havarti cheeses in a mixing bowl. Add the chopped green olives and roasted red peppers. Use an electric mixer or clean hands to mix until thoroughly combined. Take a heaping spoonful of the cheese mixture and arrange it to form an eye around one olive, and then the other. Gently lay handfuls of the cheese mixture all around the mask, taking care not to move the slices of prosciutto. Press the cheese down as you work to fill in all of the crevices. When the mask is full, gently press in the cheese mixture all around the mask. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Invert the mask onto a serving platter and gently remove the mask and the plastic wrap. You should be left with a gorgeous (and freaky) face. If there is cheese showing around the bottom edges, use the reserved prosciutto slices to cover it before serving.

Halloween Zombie Meatloaf

1 1/2 lb ground beef

1 tsp seasoned salt, or to taste

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 hard-boiled egg, cut in half

3/4 c buttery round crackers, crushed

SAUCE:

2/3 c milk

1/2 c ketchup

1/2 c finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1/4 c brown sugar

2 eggs

2 Tbs barbeque sauce

1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

5 cloves garlic, cut into small pieces

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and grease the foil. Mix ground beef, onion, crackers, milk, cheese, eggs, Worcestershire sauce, and seasoned salt together in a bowl. Transfer beef mixture to the prepared baking sheet and form into a skull-shape, leaving holes for "eye sockets" and a "mouth". Place hard-boiled egg halves into the "eye sockets", shaping the beef mixture around them to hold in place. Mix ketchup, brown sugar, and barbeque sauce together in a bowl until sauce is smooth. Spread 1/2 of the sauce onto the entire beef mixture, including the "eyes" and "mouth". Bake in preheated oven until no longer pink in the center, about 50-60. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 160 degrees. Arrange the garlic pieces in the mouth for the "teeth". Brush the remaining sauce over the meatloaf or serve on the side.

Witches' Brew**

1 pkg (10 oz) frozen raspberries, thawed

2 liters ginger ale

2 1/2 c cranberry juice

2 liters sparkling apple cider (non-alcoholic)

2 envelopes unflavored gelatin

6 gummi snakes candy

FROZEN HAND: Wash and rinse the outside of a rubber glove. Turn glove inside out and set aside. In a 4-cup measuring cup, combine the thawed raspberries and cranberry juice. Pour two cups of the raspberry mixture into a small saucepan. Sprinkle the gelatin over and let stand 2 minutes. Warm over low heat, stirring constantly, just until gelatin dissolves. Mix back into the reserved raspberry mixture in the measuring cup. Pour raspberry mixture into the inverted glove. Gather up the top of the glove and tie securely with kitchen twine. Freeze until solid, or several days if possible. To serve: Carefully cut glove away from frozen hand. Place frozen hand, palm side up, leaning against side of a large punch bowl. Pour in ginger ale and sparkling cider. Garnish with gummy snakes.

October 21, 2017

 

Warm Chicken Nacho Dip

1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes with green chile

1/3 c sour cream

peppers (such as RO*TEL drained)

1/4 c diced green onion

1 lb loaf processed cheese, cubed (Velveeta)

1 1/2 Tbs taco seasoning mix

2 large cooked skinless, boneless chicken breast

2 Tbs minced jalapeno pepper, or to taste (optional)

halves, shredded

1 c black beans, rinsed and drained

Place the diced tomatoes, processed cheese, chicken meat, sour cream, green onion, taco seasoning, and jalapeno pepper into a slow cooker. Cook on High, stirring occasionally until the cheese has melted and the dip is hot, 1-2 hours. Stir in the black beans, and cook 15 more minutes to reheat.

Kielbasa Appetizers**

18 fl oz beer

1/4 c Dijon mustard

1 bottle (18 oz) barbeque sauce

2 lbs kielbasa sausage (Polish), cut into

1/2 c brown sugar

1/2 inch pieces

Combine the beer, barbecue sauce, brown sugar, and Dijon mustard in a large skillet over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally; reduce heat to low and add the kielbasa. Simmer until kielbasa is browned and glazed, about 1 hour. Remove to serving platter and present with toothpicks.

Butter Cracker Pastrami/Corned Beef Minis

10 (0.4 oz) slices deli-sliced corned beef

2 tsp pickle relish

10 (0.4 oz) slices deli-sliced pastrami

1 1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice

20 round crackers (RITZ)

1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

RUSSIAN DRESSING:

1/8 tsp coarse salt

2 Tbs mayonnaise

dash freshly ground pepper

2 Tbs ketchup

DRESSING: Blend together the mayonnaise, ketchup, relish, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper. Stir until smooth. PREPARE MINIS: Place 10 crackers on tray. Put about 1/4 teaspoon dressing onto each cracker. Cut corned beef and pastrami deli slices in half vertically. Fold and place two pieces each of corned beef and pastrami on each cracker. Top with additional 1/4 teaspoon dressing and remaining crackers to form sandwich.

Baked Ham and Cheese Dip**

2 pkgs (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

1 c chopped smoked ham

2 c grated sharp cheddar cheese

1 can (4 oz) chopped green chilies

1 container (8 oz) sour cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix cream cheese, cheddar cheese, sour cream, ham, and green chilies in a baking dish. Bake in the preheated oven until bubbling, about 30 minutes; serve hot with your choice of chips or crackers.

October 14, 2017

Baked Slow Cooker Chicken

1 (2-3 lb) whole chicken

1 tsp paprika

salt and pepper, to taste

Crumple three pieces of aluminum foil into 3-4 inch balls, and place them in the bottom of the slow cooker. Rinse the chicken, inside and out, under cold running water. Pat dry with paper towels. Season the chicken inside and out with the salt, pepper and paprika, and place in the slow cooker on top of the crumpled aluminum foil. Set the slow cooker to High for 1 hour, then turn down to Low for about 8-10 hours, or until the chicken is no longer pink and the juices run clear.

Slow Cooker Creamed Corn\

1 1/4 pkgs (16 oz) frozen corn kernels

1/2 c milk

1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese

1 Tbs white sugar

1/2 c butter

salt and pepper, to taste

In a slow cooker, combine corn, cream cheese, butter, milk, and sugar. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook on High for 2-4 hours, or on Low for 4-6 hours.

Slow Cooker Pot Luck Spare Ribs**

6 lbs pork spareribs, cut into serving-size pieces

1 1/2 tsp ground ginger

1 1/2 c ketchup

1 tsp salt

3/4 c packed brown sugar

3/4 tsp ground mustard

1/2 c vinegar

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 c honey

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

1/3 c soy sauce

Put spareribs in the bottom of a slow cooker; top with ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, honey, soy sauce, ginger, salt, mustard, garlic powder, and black pepper. Cook on High for 5 hours.

Slow Cooker Manly Stew

1 can (10.75 oz) cream of mushroom soup

1 pkg (1.25 oz) beef with onion soup mix

1 can (10.75 oz) cheddar cheese soup

3 lbs beef stew meat

Pour the cream of mushroom soup, cheese soup and onion soup mix into a slow cooker, and mix well. Add beef, cover and cook on Low for 8 hours, or on High for 4-5 hours.

Slow Cooker Black Forest Cake**

1/2 c butter

1 can (21 oz) cherry pie filling

1 can (8 oz) crushed pineapple, drained with

1 pkg (18.25 oz) chocolate cake mix

juice reserved

Melt the butter in a small saucepan, and mix with reserved juice from the can of pineapple. Set the mixture aside. Spread the crushed pineapple in a layer on the bottom of a slow cooker. Spoon the cherry pie filling in an even layer on top of the pineapple, and empty the dry cake mix into the slow cooker on top of the cherry filling. Stir the butter and pineapple juice mixture, and pour it over the dry cake mix. Set the slow cooker to Low, and cook for 3 hours. Spoon the dessert into bowls, and let cool about 5 minutes to cool the hot pie filling before eating.

October 7, 2017

Oatmeal Brownies

1 c butter at room temperature

1 tsp baking powder

1 c firmly packed light brown sugar

1 1/2 c all-purpose flour

1/2 cup white sugar

2 c rolled oats

2 eggs

chocolate chips, optional

2 tsp vanilla extract

raisins, optional

1/2 tsp salt

chopped walnuts, optional

1 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x13-inch baking pan. In a large bowl, beat the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar until thoroughly mixed and creamy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla extract until well mixed, and mix in salt, baking soda, baking powder, flour, rolled oats, plus chocolate chips, raisins, and chopped nuts if desired. Mix well to moisten all ingredients, and spread into the prepared baking pan. Bake in the preheated oven until golden brown, 20*25 minutes. Let cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before cutting into bars.

Cranberry Scrumptious Bars**

1 pkg (12 oz) whole cranberries

2 eggs

1 c white sugar

1 c rolled oats

3/4 c water

3/4 c packed light brown sugar

1 pkg (18.25 oz) yellow cake mix

1 tsp ground ginger

3/4 c butter, melted

1 tsp ground cinnamon

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the cranberries, white sugar, and water. Cook, stirring occasionally until all of the cranberries have popped, and the mixture is thick, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, and set aside to cool. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together the cake mix, melted butter, and eggs. Stir in the oats, brown sugar, ginger and cinnamon. Set aside about 1 1/2 cups of the mixture, and spread the rest into the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Pack down to form a solid crust, getting it as even as possible. Spread the cooled cranberry mixture over the crust. Pinch off pieces of the remaining mixture and place evenly over the cranberry layer. Bake for 35-40 minutes in the preheated oven, until the top is lightly browned. Cool in the pan for about 40 minutes before slicing into bars.

Big Fat Chewy Chocolate Chip

2 c all-purpose flour

1/2 c white sugar

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 Tbs vanilla extract

1/2 tsp salt

1 egg

3/4 c unsalted butter, melted

1 egg yolk

1 c packed brown sugar

2 c semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper. Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until well blended. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy. Mix in the sifted ingredients until just blended. Stir in the chocolate chips by hand using a wooden spoon. Drop cookie dough 1/4 cup at a time onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be about 3 inches apart. Bake for 15-17 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the edges are lightly toasted. Cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Orange Almond Biscotti**

2 1/4 c all-purpose flour

1 Tbs orange zest

1 1/4 c white sugar

3 egg, beaten

1 pinch salt

1 Tbs vegetable oil

2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp almond extract

1/2 c sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a baking sheet. In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, almonds, and orange zest. Make a well in the center and add the eggs oil, and almond extract. Stir or mix by hand until the mixture forms a ball. Separate dough into two pieces and roll each one into a log about 8 inches long. Place logs on prepared baking sheet and flatten so they are about 3/4 inch thick. Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes. Cool slightly, and remove from baking sheets. Slice diagonally into 1/2 inch slices with a serrated knife. Set cookies on side back onto the cookie sheet and bake for 10-15 more minutes, turning over after half of the time. Finished cookies should be hard and crunchy.

September 30, 2017

Lettuce Leaf Tacos

1 green bell pepper, chopped

3 Tbs taco seasoning

1 yellow onion, chopped

2 large roma (plum) tomatoes, chopped

2 Tbs olive oil

1/2 tsp salt

2 Tbs chicken stock, optional

1 pkg (8 oz) shredded cheddar cheese

1 lb ground beef

12 large romaine lettuce leaves

Cook and stir green bell pepper and yellow onion in a skillet over medium heat with olive oil and chicken broth until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Cut up ground beef into small pieces; place into a separate skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir ground beef with taco seasoning until beef is browned and crumbly, 5-8 minutes. Drain excess grease. Sprinkle roma tomatoes with salt in a bowl. Place cheese into a separate bowl. Fill each lettuce leaf with about 2 tablespoons beef filling; top with 1-2 teaspoons green pepper mixture, roma tomato, about 1 1/2 tablespoons cheese.

Yellow Squash Casserole

1 Tbs olive oil

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 tsp butter

1/3 c finely chopped raw almonds

1 small onion, chopped

1 c shredded colby-monterey jack cheese, divided

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 c heavy whipping cream

4 c peeled and cubed yellow squash

2 eggs

1 tsp kosher salt

1/3 c coarsely chopped roasted, salted almonds

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat olive oil and butter in a skillet over medium-high heat; cook and stir onion and garlic in the hot oil-butter mixture until softened, about 3 minutes. Add squash, salt, and pepper; stir to combine. Cover skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until squash is softened, about 5 minutes. Transfer squash mixture to a large bowl. Mix raw almonds and half cup cheese together in a bowl; stir into squash mixture. Whisk cream and eggs together in a measuring cup or small bowl; stir into squash mixture. Pour squash mixture into a 9x13-inch casserole dish; top with remaining cheese and roasted almonds. Bake in the preheated oven until casserole is golden brown and bubbling, 25-30 minutes.

Almond Flour Pancakes

1/4 c water

1 pinch baking powder

2 Tbs almond flour

2 drops vanilla extract

1 Tbs vegetable oil

1 egg

1 Tbs heavy whipping cream

Whisk water, almond flour, vegetable oil, cream, baking powder, and vanilla extract together in a microwave-safe bowl. Cook in the microwave on high until gooey batter forms, 1 1/2-2 minutes. Let batter rest until cooled slightly, 1-2 minutes. Whisk in egg until well-blended. Heat a lightly oiled griddle over medium-high heat. Drop batter onto the griddle and cook until bubbles form and the edges are dry, 4-5 minutes. Flip and cook until browned on the other side, 2-3 minutes. Repeat with remaining batter.

Low Carb Coconut Flour Crepes**

5 eggs

2 tsp coconut flour

1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 Tbs maple syrup

cooking spray

Preheat an electric griddle to 225 degrees. (Skillet on low) Blend eggs and cream cheese in a blender until smooth. Add maple syrup, coconut flour, and cinnamon; blend until batter is smooth. Spray the preheated griddle with cooking spray. Pour batter onto the griddle to form small pancakes. Cook until edges set and do not tear when lifted with a spatula, 5-7 minutes. Flip pancakes gently with 2 rubber spatulas. Cook until second side is set, about 5 minutes. Repeat with remaining batter, spraying griddle between batches.

September 23, 2017

In Your Sleep Chili

1 lb ground beef

1 can (11.5 oz) hot-style vegetable juice

1 large onion, chopped

sliced green onions, optional

2 cans (15 oz ea) chili beans in chili gravy

sour cream, optional

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes and green

shredded cheddar cheese, optional

chilies, undrained

In a large skillet, cook ground beef and onion until meat is brown; drain off fat. In a 3 ½-4 quart slow cooker, combine ground beef mixture, beans, undrained tomatoes and green chilies, and vegetable juice. Cover; cook on low-heat setting for 4-6 hours on high-heat setting for 2-3 hours. If desired, top each serving with green onions, sour cream, and cheddar cheese.

Secret Recipe Chili**

2 Tbs chili powder

2 Tbs balsamic vinegar

1 Tbs ground cumin

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes

2 tsp dried oregano, crushed

1 can (4.5 oz) diced green chilies

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce

1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder

1 can (14.5 oz) Italian style whole peeled

1 Tbs olive oil

tomatoes in puree, crushed

3/4 c green sweet pepper, chopped

1 can (15 oz) cannellini beans (white kidney

3/4 c onion, chopped

beans), rinsed and drained

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 can (15 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained

1 lb bulk Italian sausage

sour cream, optional

1 lb ground beef

shredded cheddar cheese, optional

In a small bowl, stir together the chili powder, cumin, oregano, cayenne and cocoa powder; set aside. In a 4-quart Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook and stir sweet pepper, onion and garlic until tender, stirring frequently so that garlic does not burn. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook sausage and ground beef until no longer pink; drain. Add half of the spice mixture; mix well. Add meat mixture, vinegar, undrained diced tomatoes, green chilies and tomato sauce to the vegetable mixture in the Dutch oven. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. To the Dutch oven, add the Italian tomatoes, cannellini beans, black beans, and remaining spice blend. Bring to boiling and reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve with optional sour cream and shredded cheese.

Chicken Fajita Chili

2 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast halves,

3 cans (14.5 oz) no-salt added diced tomatoes

cut into 1-inch pieces

1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1 Tbs chili powder

1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1/2 tsp paprika

1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1.2 tsp garlic powder

1 medium onion, chopped

1/2 tsp salt

1 can (15 oz) cannellini beans (white kidney

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

beans), rinsed and drained

1/8 tsp pepper

sour cream, optional

1/2 tsp ground cumin

shredded cheddar cheese, optional

2 cloves garlic, minced

guacamole, optional

non-stick cooking spray

In a medium bowl, combine chicken, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, salt, pepper, cumin, and garlic; toss to coat. Coat an unheated large skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat skillet over medium-high heat. Cook chicken, half at a time, in hot skillet until browned on all sides, stirring occasionally. Place chicken in a 3 1/2-4 quart slow cooker. Add undrained tomatoes, chopped peppers, and cannellini beans. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 4-5 hours or on high-heat setting for 2-2 1/2 hours. If desired, top individual servings with sour cream, shredded cheese, and/or guacamole.

Going Whole Hog Chili

2 lb pork shoulder roast (bone-in)

3 Tbs chili powder

6 Tbs vegetable oil, divided

2 cans (15 oz) hominy, undrained

2 tsp crushed red pepper

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained

1 pkg pork gravy mix

1 can (14.5 oz) vegetable broth

6 cloves garlic, minced

1 can (15 oz) pinto beans, undrained

1 jalapeno chili pepper, halved, seeded and sliced

1 habanero chile pepper, seeded and minced, optional

2 Anaheim chile pepper

1 tsp dried oregano, crushed

1 poblano chile pepper

1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 c chopped onion

sour cream

3 Tbs all-purpose flour

shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Brush all sides of pork with half of oil. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper and gravy mix; rub into meat with fingers. In a roasting pan, stir together garlic, jalapeno, and 1 cup water. Add roast. Roast, uncovered, for 3 hours or until pork is tender, adding water as needed to the roasting pan. Remove and let cool slightly. When cool enough to handle, shred pork with two forks; set aside. Strain the cooking liquid through a fine mesh strainer; discard solids. Skim fat from liquid and set aside. Preheat broiler. Place the Anaheim and poblano peppers on a foil-lined baking sheet. Broil 4-5 inches from the heat about 5 minutes per side or until blistered and just starting to char. Remove and wrap in the foil. Let stand 20 minutes or until cool enough to handle. Stem and seed the peppers. Use a small sharp knife to peel the skin from the peppers. Chop the peppers; set aside. In a 4 quart Dutch oven, cook onion in remaining oil over medium heat until tender. Stir in flour and chili powder until combined. Stir in pork, roasted peppers, hominy, tomatoes, vegetable broth, reserved broth from pork, beans, optional habanero pepper, oregano and cumin. Bring to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 10-20 minutes or until desired consistency. Serve with sour cream and shredded cheese.

September 16, 2017

Stuffed Croissant Breakfast Strata

6-7 croissants

2 c lightly packed, coarsely chopped fresh spinach

8 slices bacon

2 c Colby and Monterey Jack cheese or

1 chopped onion

American cheese, shredded

1 c chopped red and/or green sweet peppers,

6 eggs

or sliced, halved zucchini

2 c milk

1 c sliced fresh cremini mushrooms

3 Tbs Dijon-style mustard

1 1/2 tsp dried basil, oregano or thyme, crushed

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Preheat the broiler. Slice the croissants in half horizontally. Arrange croissant halves, cut sides up, in a single layer on an extra large baking sheet. Broil 4-5 inches from the heat for 1-2 minutes or until light brown. Set aside. In a skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Drain bacon on paper towels, reserving 1 tablespoon drippings in skillet. Crumble bacon; set aside. Cook onion, sweet peppers, mushrooms, and basil in hot bacon drippings about 5 minutes or until vegetables are almost tender, stirring occasionally. Add spinach; stir until wilted and well coated. Transfer onion mixture to a colander set in sink; drain. Stir in bacon. Set aside. In a greased 3-quart rectangular baking dish, arrange croissant bottoms, cut sides up, in a single layer, overlapping slightly. Sprinkle cheese over croissants. Spoon onion mixture over cheese; add croissant tops, cut sides down. In a large bowl, beat eggs with a rotary beater; beat in milk, mustard and black pepper. Carefully pour egg mixture over strata; gently press down on croissants. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 8-24 hours. Uncover strata. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Bake, uncovered, in a 325 degree F oven for 50-55 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean and strata puffs up, covering with foil the last 15 minutes of baking time to avoid over browning. Remove from oven. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Serve warm. Makes 10-12 servings.

Cranberry Apple Pork Roast**

1 (3-4 lb) boneless pork loin roast

1/2 c apple juice

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 cooking apples, cored, peeled and

1 can whole cranberry sauce

coarsely chopped

1/4 c brown sugar

salt and pepper, to taste

Place the pork loin roast in the slow cooker and rub all sides with the minced garlic. In a bowl, combine the cranberry sauce, brown sugar, apple juice, and chopped apples. Cover and cook on low for 7-9 hours. Taste the sauce and add salt and pepper, as needed. To thicken (optional), stir cornstarch into 2 tablespoons of cold water. Stir until smooth. Add to the liquids and stir to blend. Increase the setting to high and continue cooking for about 5-10 minutes, until thickened. Slice the pork and serve it with rice or potatoes.

Beef Stroganoff Casserole

12 oz dried campanelle or penne pasta

1 can (14 oz) beef broth

1 pkg (17 oz) refrigerated cooked beef roast au jus

1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

2 large fresh portobello mushrooms, stems

1 tsp smoke paprika or Spanish paprika

removed and coarsely chopped

1/4 tsp salt

1 medium sweet onion, cut into thin wedges

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 carton (8 oz) sour cream, divided

2 Tbs butter

1 Tbs prepared horseradish

3 Tbs all-purpose flour

1 tsp snipped fresh dill or 1/4 tsp dried

2 Tbs tomato paste

fresh dill sprigs, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. Return to pan. Meanwhile, remove meat from container, reserving juices. Using two forks, shred meat into bite-size pieces. Set aside. In a large skillet, cook mushrooms, onion, and garlic in hot butter over medium heat for 4-5 minutes or until tender. Stir in flour and tomato paste. Gradually stir in meat juices, broth, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, salt, and pepper. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/2 cup sour cream. Stir shredded meat and mushroom mixture into cooked pasta. Transfer mixture to an ungreased 3-quart casserole. Bake, covered, about 30 minutes or until heated through. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the remaining sour cream, horseradish, and snipped or dried dill. Serve with meat mixture. If desired, garnish with dill sprigs. Makes 6 servings.

Broccoli Chicken Divan**

1 lb chopped fresh broccoli

1/2 c shredded cheddar cheese

1 1/2 c cubed, cooked chicken meat

1 Tbs butter, melted

1 can (10.75 oz) cream of broccoli soup

2 Tbs dried bread crumbs

1/3 c milk

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place the broccoli in a saucepan with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, and cook 5 minutes, or until tender. Drain. Place the cooked broccoli in a 9-inch pie plate. Top with the chicken. In a bowl, mix the soup and milk, and pour over the chicken. Sprinkle with cheese. Mix the melted butter with the bread crumbs, and sprinkle over the cheese. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until bubbly and lightly brown.

September 9, 2017

Tuna and White Bean Salad

2 cans (15 oz) white beans, drained and rinsed

1/4 c finely chopped fresh parsley

1 can (12 oz) chunk light tuna in water, drained

3 Tbs olive oil

2 c cherry tomatoes, halved

3 Tbs lemon juice

1/2 c pitted black olives, chopped

salt and pepper

1 shallot, finely chopped

salad greens, optional

In a large bowl, combine beans, tuna, tomatoes, olives, shallot and parsley. Drizzle oil and lemon juice over mixture. Toss well, season with salt and pepper, and serve over greens, if desired.

Quick Cobb Salad w Yogurt Dressing**

6 strips bacon

2 romaine hearts, cut crosswise in half-inch strips

1/2 c plain yogurt (not nonfat)

2 c diced cooked skinless rotisserie chicken

1 Tbs lemon juice

1 c cherry tomatoes, halved

1 Tbs olive oil

1 ripe avocado, diced

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

3 oz blue cheese, crumbled

1/2 tsp salt

Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove bacon to a paper towel-lined plate. When bacon has cooled, crumble. In a medium bowl, whisk together yogurt, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and salt. Toss romaine with 2 tablespoons yogurt dressing and place on a serving platter. On top of romaine, arrange chicken, tomatoes, avocado, blue cheese and bacon in rows. Drizzle with remaining dressing and serve immediately

Chopped BBQ Chicken Salad

1/4 c prepared barbeque sauce

1 c chopped red bell pepper

2 Tbs olive oil

1 c broken tortilla chips

2 Tbs lime juice

1/2 c thinly sliced radishes

1 Tbs red wine vinegar

1/2 c chopped red onion

2 cans (15 oz ea) kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 tomato, rinsed, cored, seeded and diced

2 c chopped cooked chicken

8 oz mixed baby greens

1 c cooked fresh or thawed frozen corn kernels

salt and pepper

In a large bowl, mix barbecue sauce, olive oil, lime juice, and vinegar. Add beans, chicken, corn, bell pepper, chips, radishes, onion, tomato, and greens. Mix well. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Three Step Taco Salad**

1 lb ground sirloin

4 c bite-size baked tortilla chips

1 pkg (1.25 oz) taco seasoning

2 c chopped fresh tomatoes, drained

3/4 c water

1 c shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided

2/3 c fat-free sour cream

1 can (15 oz) kidney or black beans, rinsed and drained

2/3 c salsa

1/2 c sliced ripe black olives

8 c shredded iceberg lettuce

Cook the beef in large skillet over medium-high heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Stir in taco seasoning and water. Reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Combine sour cream and salsa in a small bowl. Combine the beef mixture, iceberg lettuce, tortilla chips, tomatoes, 1/2 cup cheese, and beans in a large bowl. Drizzle the sour cream mixture over the salad, and toss gently. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and black olives. Serve immediately.

Green Goddess Chicken Salad

3/4 c mayonnaise

1/4 tsp kosher salt

3/4 c sour cream

1/4 tsp black pepper

3 Tbs fresh lemon juice

2 c thinly sliced curly kale

1/2 c finely chopped fresh parsley

2 rotisserie chickens, meat removed and diced

1/2 c finely chopped fresh chives

3/4 c finely chopped celery

2 Tbs finely chopped fresh tarragon

3/4 c finely chopped carrot

2 garlic cloves, mashed to a paste w pinch of salt

Stir together mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, parsley, chives, tarragon, garlic, salt, and pepper in a bowl until blended. Using your hands, massage the kale leaves. Combine kale and 3/4 cup of the dressing in a large bowl. Add chicken, celery, carrot, and remaining dressing to bowl; stir until thoroughly combined. Let chicken salad sit at least 30 minutes before serving.

September 2, 2017

Pulled Pork Sliders

2 c shredded pork, heated through

2 c cole slaw

BBQ sauce

8 Hawaiian sweet rolls

Assemble and serve.

Rainbow Fruit Popsicles**

leftover fruit salad

lemonade

Spoon fruit into popsicle molds, fill 3/4 full with lemonade leaving room for expansion. Freeze.

Corndog Muffins

4-5 grilled hot dogs, cut into 1 inch pieces

1 pkg (8 1/2 oz) cornbread muffin mix

cornbread muffin mix

Preheat the oven, and grease a muffin pan. Prepare cornbread muffin mix. Mix in the hot dog pieces, bake per package directions. Serve with ketchup and mustard.

Chicken Pesto Portobello Mushrooms**

1 small red onion, cut into 1/4 inch slices

1/4 tsp black pepper

1/3 c prepared pesto

1 1/4 c shredded cooked chicken breast

1 tsp olive oil

4 large Portobello mushrooms, stems removed

3/8 tsp kosher salt

1/4 c shredded mozzarella cheese

Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Arrange onion slices on pan; cook 2 minutes on each side or until lightly charred. Remove pan from heat; coarsely chop onions. Combine chopped onions, pesto, oil, salt, pepper, and chicken in a medium bowl; toss well. Divide mixture evenly among mushrooms, pressing gently to fill each cap. Return pan to medium-high. Coat with cooking spray. Gently transfer mushrooms to pan; cook 3-4 minutes or until mushrooms are heated through and tender. Sprinkle cheese evenly over chicken mixture. Transfer pan to oven; broil 2 minutes or until cheese melts and begins to brown.

Chicken and Avocado Nacho Salad

3/4 c pico de gallo, divided

2 ripe peeled avocados, sliced

4 tsp virgin olive oil

20 or so multi-grain tortilla chips

6 c lettuce, coarsely chopped

1/4 tsp pepper

2 c shredded rotisserie chicken

Combine 1/2 cup pico de gallo and oil in a mini food processor; process until smooth. Set aside. Spread lettuce evenly over a large platter; top with chicken and avocado. Drizzle evenly with blended pico de gallo and remaining pico de gallo. Sprinkle with tortilla chips and pepper.

August 26, 2017

Frozen Margarita Pie**

CRUST:

1/3 c frozen limeade concentrate, thawed

1 c finely crushed pretzels

2 Tbs tequila

1/4 c sugar

1 Tbs orange liqueur

1/3 c butter

3 drops green food coloring, or as needed

FILLING:

1 c heavy whipping cream

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk

1 lime, sliced for garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix pretzels and sugar in a bowl, adding the melted butter until completely blended. Spoon mixture into a 9-inch pie plate, pressing into the bottom and up the sides forming a firm, even crust. Bake crust in the oven until edges are lightly browned, just about 5 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. In a bowl, mix the sweetened condensed milk, limeade concentrate, tequila, orange liqueur and green food coloring; set aside. In a chilled glass bowl, beat the cream until soft peaks form. Fold this into the sweetened condensed milk mixture. Spoon this into the cooled crust. Cover pie with plastic wrap and freeze until firm, about 4 hours. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving, garnish with lime slices and whipped cream.

Raspberry Lime Sherbet "Watermelon"**

2 pints lime sherbet, slightly softened

6 oz miniature semi-sweet chocolate chips

1/2 gallon raspberry sherbet, slightly softened

Line a large serving bowl with plastic wrap. Spoon the lime sherbet into the bowl, smoothing it out to be 1/2 inch thick along the sides; making the watermelon rind. Place bowl in the freezer for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, stir the chocolate chips evenly into the raspberry sherbet. Scoop the raspberry sherbet into the lime sherbet shell. Smooth and level off the top. Return the bowl to the freezer for at least two hours. To serve, invert the bowl onto a serving platter. Lift off the bowl and remove the plastic wrap. Freeze longer if the sherbet is too soft. Slice like pieces of watermelon.

Caramel Drizzle Pie

2 (9 in) prepared graham cracker crusts

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk

6 Tbs butter

1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

1 pkg (7 oz) shredded coconut

1 container (16 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed

1 c chopped pecans

1 jar (12 oz) caramel ice cream topping

Place butter in a medium skillet and melt over medium heat. Add coconut and pecans, stirring to coat. Saute until coconut and pecans are lightly toasted, about 5 minutes. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, whip together condensed milk and cream cheese until fluffy. Fold in the whipped topping and spoon 1/4 of the mixture into each graham cracker crust. Drizzle each with 1/4 of the caramel topping. Repeat the layers again, finishing with topping each pie with coconut and pecan mixture and any remaining caramel. Freeze overnight.

Mango Sorbet**

4 mangos peeled, seeded and cubed

1/2 c sugar

1/2 c water

3 Tbs fresh lime juice

Place the cubed mango in a food processor or blender, and puree. Bring the water to a boil and add the sugar, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Pour in with the mango and add the lime juice. Blend until completely combined. Pour into a large glass bowl; cover and refrigerate up to two hours. Then transfer to the freezer for 30 minutes. Remove and check if ice crystals are beginning to form and all but the center is beginning to harden. Take your whisk and beat the sorbet until it’s creamy again. Return to the freezer and repeat, at least three times. Continue if you wish to have a harder consistency, less if you want it softer.

August 19, 2017

Sirloin Steak w Garlic Butter

1/2 c butter

4 lbs beef top sirloin steaks

2 tsp garlic powder

salt and pepper

4 cloves garlic, minced

Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat. In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat with the garlic powder and minced garlic. Set aside. Sprinkle both sides of each steak with salt and pepper, letting it rest for 10 minutes. Grill steaks 4-5 minutes per side, or to desired doneness. When done, transfer to warmed plates. Brush tops liberally with the garlic butter and allow to rest 2-3 minutes before serving.

Souvlaki**

1 lemon, juiced

4 lbs pork tenderloin, cut into 1 inch cubes

1/4 c olive oil

2 medium yellow onions, cut into 1 inch pieces

1/4 c soy sauce

1 green bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces

1 tsp dried oregano

1 yellow bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces

3 cloves garlic, crushed

skewers

In a large glass bowl, mix together lemon juice, olive oil, soy sauce, oregano and garlic. Add the pork, onions and green peppers, stirring to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours. Preheat the grill for medium-high heat. Thread pork, peppers and onions onto two skewers, placed side by side so food will not spin when turning on the grill. Lightly oil the grate, and cook for 10-15 minutes, turning skewers frequently for even cooking.

Balsamic Grilled Zucchini

2 zucchinis, quartered lengthwise

1 tsp Italian seasoning

2 tsp olive oil

1 pinch salt

1/2 tsp garlic powder

2 Tbs balsamic vinegar

Preheat grill for medium-low heat and lightly oil the grate. Brush zucchini with olive oil and sprinkle garlic powder, Italian seasoning and salt over it. Cook on the preheated grill until it begins to brown, 3-4 minutes each side. Brush the balsamic vinegar over the zucchini and continue cooking for another minute. Serve immediately.

Grilled Peanut Chicken**

2 Tbs peanut butter

1/3 tsp curry powder

1 Tbs fresh lime juice

1 dash cayenne pepper

2 tsp soy sauce

4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves

1 clove garlic, chopped

Preheat grill for high heat. In a bowl, mix the peanut butter, lime juice, soy sauce, curry powder and cayenne pepper. Lightly oil the grill grate and place the chicken there. Brush with half of the sauce, grilling for 6-8 minutes. Turn the chicken and brush with the remaining sauce. Continue grilling another 6-8 minutes, until the chicken juices run clear.

August 12, 2017

Awesome Ham Pasta Salad

8 oz ziti pasta

1 c mayonnaise

1 lb cooked ham, cubed

1/2 c sour cream

1 large red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

2 1/2 tsp beef bouillon granules

1 large green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1 Tbs white vinegar

1 large red onion, coarsely chopped

1/2 tsp salt

15 small sweet pickles, chopped, juice reserved

1/4 tsp pepper

1 c cherry tomatoes, halved

2 cloves garlic, minced

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil and add pasta. Cook for 8-10 minutes or until al dente; drain. In a large bowl, mix together the drained pasta, ham, peppers, onion, pickles and tomatoes. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream, beef bouillon granules, vinegar, salt, pepper, garlic and a half cup of reserved pickle juice. Fold into the pasta mixture and toss gently until evenly coated. Chill overnight to allow the flavors to blend.

Ham n Pineapple Dinner**

2 Tbs butter

4 tsp cider vinegar

2 1/2 c cooked and cubed ham

2 Tbs brown sugar

2 green onions, chopped

2 tsp prepared mustard

1 c pineapple chunks, drained

2 tsp cornstarch

1 1/3 c pineapple juice

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Sauté the ham, onions and pineapple chunks in the butter for about 5 minutes. In a separate medium bowl, combine the pineapple juice, vinegar, brown sugar, mustard and cornstarch. Stir this together well and pour over the ham mixture in the skillet. Stir well and allow to heat through and thicken, about 7 minutes.

Mushroom Crusted Ham and Cheese Pie

10 oz fresh mushrooms, coarsely chopped

4 oz shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1/4 c finely chopped onion

1 container (8 oz) herb and garlic flavored

1/4 c butter, divided

cream cheese, softened

1/2 c dry bread crumbs

4 eggs

2 Tbs grated Parmesan cheese

1 dash hot pepper sauce

1/4 tsp salt

1 c cooked ham, diced

1/4 tsp pepper

1 Tbs chopped fresh parsley

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a medium pan, sauté mushrooms and onion in 3 1/2 tablespoons of the butter until just tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the bread crumbs, Parmesan, salt and pepper. Butter the bottom and sides of a 10-inch deep dish pie pan. Press mushroom mixture into pan evenly on bottom and sides. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over the mushrooms. In a blender, beat together cream cheese, eggs and hot pepper sauce until well mixed. Stir in the diced ham. Pour over the shredded cheese and bake 30 minutes or until set in the center. Garnish with the parsley.

Priceless Ham Salad**

1 1/2 lbs cooked ham, chopped

1/3 c dill pickle relish

3/4 c mayonnaise, or as needed

1/4 c brown mustard

1/3 c dried minced onion

Process a couple of cups of ham at a time, in a food processor (if you have one) until finely chopped but not pasty; about 6-7 pulses. Place the finely chopped ham in a large bowl and continue processing the remaining ham. Add the mayonnaise, onions, relish and mustard to the processed ham. Mix well and if the mixture is too dry, add more mayonnaise. Refrigerate until serving. The dried onions absorb some of the moisture from the mayonnaise and relish so you may need to add more mayonnaise before serving.

August 5, 2017

Perfect Scrambled Eggs per Chef Bourdain

4 large fresh eggs

salt

butter

pepper

Heat your pan until it is medium high. Crack your eggs into a bowl and add salt and pepper if desired. Beat them with a fork until you achieve a ripple of white and yellow throughout. Do not over blend. Add butter to the pan, and when it is melted and becoming foamy pour in the eggs. The idea here is to add the eggs immediately after blending. Let them set up a bit before pushing them around in a figure eight pattern. This allows them to fluff up without breaking into little broken bits.

Mason Jar Omelets**

non-stick cooking spray

1 red bell pepper, chopped

4 large eggs

salt

2/3 c shredded cheddar

pepper

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1 Tbs chives, chopped

1/2 c ham, diced

If baking, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare jars with cooking spray. Crack two eggs into each jar. Divide cheese, onion, ham, and bell pepper between the two jars and season with salt and pepper. Place lids on the jars and shake until the ingredients are combined. Remove lids and place in the oven for approximately 8-12 minutes, watching closely for the egg to be set. Or microwave them on high for 2 minutes, checking every 30 seconds for even cooking. Garnish with chives, and eat from the jar!

Loaded Egg Quesadillas

6 oz Chorizo sausage, or preferred meat

salt

1/2 medium onion, finely chopped

pepper

4 large eggs

1/3 c shredded Monterey Jack cheese

1 Tbs sour cream, plus additional for serving

1/3 c shredded cheddar cheese

2 Tbs chives, chopped

1 avocado, thinly sliced

4 medium flour tortillas

hot sauce for serving

Cook meat in a medium pan over medium high heat until done. Remove from pan leaving 2 tablespoons of drippings, or add oil. Put onion in the pan and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Whisk together eggs and sour cream in a medium bowl. Pour egg mixture into the pan. Let set slightly, reducing heat to low. Move eggs in the pan until set, add salt and pepper. Fold in the chives and remove from the heat. Assemble the quesadillas: Divide the scrambled eggs between two tortillas, and top with the eggs and avocado slices. Place the remaining tortillas on top. One at a time, cook quesadillas in a clean non-stick skillet over medium heat until the bottom tortilla is golden brown, about 3 minutes. Flip carefully, and cook the other side the same, then repeat for second quesadilla. Serve warm with more sour cream and hot sauce.

Pepper Egg-In-A-Hole**

4 eggs

salt

4 bell peppers assorted colors, seeded and "topped"

pepper

1 c shredded cheddar

parsley, chopped for garnish

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In the bottom portion of each bell pepper, add cheddar and your choice of breakfast meat. Crack an egg on top and season with salt and pepper. Bake until whites are cooked and yolks done to your preference, at least 20 minutes. Remove and garnish with parsley.

July  29, 2017

Apple Strudel Muffins

2 c all-purpose flour

1 1/4 tsp vanilla

1 tsp baking powder

1 1/2 c chopped apples

1/2 tsp baking soda

STRUDEL TOPPING:

1/2 tsp salt

1/3 c packed brown sugar

1/2 c butter

1 Tbs all-purpose flour

1 c white sugar

1/8 tsp ground cinnamon

2 eggs

1 Tbs butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 12-cup muffin pan. In a medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, beat together butter, sugar and eggs until smooth. Mix in vanilla. Stir in apples, and gradually blend in the flour mixture. Spoon the mixture into the prepared muffin pan. In a small bowl, mix brown sugar, flour and cinnamon. Cut in butter until mixture is like coarse crumbs. Sprinkle over tops of muffins. Bake 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Allow to sit 5 minutes before removing muffins from pan, and cool on a wire rack.

Asian Beef w Snow Peas**

3 Tbs soy sauce

1 Tbs minced fresh ginger root

2 Tbs rice wine

1 Tbs minced garlic

1 Tbs brown sugar

1 lb beef round steak, cut into thin strips

1/2 tsp cornstarch

8 oz snow peas

1 Tbs vegetable oil

In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice wine, brown sugar and cornstarch. Set aside. Heat oil in a wok or skillet over medium high heat. Stir-fry ginger and garlic for 30 seconds. Add the steak and stir-fry for 2 minutes or until evenly browned. Add the snow peas and stir-fry for an additional 3 minutes. Add the soy sauce mixture, bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Lower heat and simmer until the sauce is thick and smooth. Serve immediately.

Beef Nacho Casserole

1 lb ground beef

1 tsp chili powder

1 1/2 c chunky salsa

2 cups crushed tortilla chips

1 can (10 oz) whole kernel corn, drained

2 cups Colby cheese

3/4 c creamy salad dressing

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place ground beef in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring to crumble, until evenly browned. Drain grease. Remove from the heat, and stir the salsa, corn, salad dressing and chili powder into the beef. In a 2-quart casserole dish, layer the ground beef mixture, tortilla chips and cheese twice, ending with cheese on top. Bake for 20 minutes uncovered in the preheated oven, until cheese is melted and dish is thoroughly heated.

Portobello Penne Pasta Casserole

1 pkg (8 oz) uncooked penne pasta

1/2 tsp dried basil

2 Tbs vegetable oil

2 c milk

1/2 lb portobello mushrooms, thinly sliced

2 c shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

1/2 c butter

1 pkg (10 oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed

1/4 c all-purpose flour

1/4 c soy sauce

1 large clove garlic, minced

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9x13 inch baking dish. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Place pasta in the pot, cook for 8-10 minutes, until al dente, and drain. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the mushrooms, cook 1 minute, and set aside. Melt margarine in the saucepan. Mix in flour, garlic, and basil. Gradually mix in milk until thickened. Stir in 1 cup cheese until melted. Remove saucepan from heat, and mix in cooked pasta, mushrooms, spinach, and soy sauce. Transfer to the prepared baking dish, and top with remaining cheese. Bake 20 minutes in the preheated oven, until bubbly and lightly brown.

July 22, 2017

Crescent Pizza Pockets

1 can (8 oz) refrigerated crescent dinner rolls

1/2 c sliced pepperoni (24 slices)

1/4 c pizza sauce

1 tsp grated Parmesan cheese

3/4 c shredded mozzarella cheese

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Unroll dough onto cookie sheet; separate into four rectangles (2 triangles each). Press each rectangle to form a 6x4-inch rectangle, firmly pressing perforations to seal. Spread one tablespoon pizza sauce on half of each rectangle to within 1 inch of edge. Sprinkle each with three tablespoons cheese; top with six slices pepperoni. Fold dough from the top over filling; firmly press edges with fork to seal. Sprinkle each rectangle with 1/4 teaspoon grated cheese. With fork, prick top of each to allow steam to escape. Bake 13-15 minutes or until deep golden brown. Serve warm.

One Pot Creamy Spaghetti**

1 lb ground Italian sausage

1/2 c whipping cream

12 oz uncooked spaghetti (from 16 oz box)

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes, optional

1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes w basil, undrained

shredded Parmesan cheese, optional

1 box (32 oz) chicken broth or stock

fresh basil leaves, optional

In 8-quart stockpot, cook sausage over medium-high heat 5-7 minutes or until no longer pink; drain. Add spaghetti, tomatoes, broth, cream and pepper flakes; heat to boiling. Reduce heat to medium, cook 15-20 minutes, stirring frequently until pasta is tender and sauce is thick and creamy. Serve with remaining ingredients.

PBJ and Banana Burritos

2 Tbs smooth natural peanut butter

1 Tbs apricot jelly

1 whole wheat tortilla

1 tsp honey

1 banana

Spread the peanut butter evenly over the middle of the tortilla; spread the apricot jelly in a layer over the peanut butter. Lay the banana on top the peanut butter and jelly layers. Drizzle the honey over the banana. Fold the tortilla over the ends of the banana and roll the other two sides of the tortilla over the mixture to form a burrito.

Apple Toast**

1 Tbs butter

1 Tbs cinnamon

4 slices white or whole wheat bread

1 large apple, cored and thinly sliced

Set oven to broil. Spread butter on one side of each slice of bread. Place apple slices on buttered side of bread. Sprinkle cinnamon on top. Place bread on a baking sheet. Place in a preheated oven until toasted, about 2 minutes.

July 15, 2017

Chive & Onion Hash Brown Potatoes

1 1/2 c half and half cream

2 pkg (20 oz ea) refrigerated shredded hash

1 container (8 oz) spreadable chive and onion

brown potatoes

cream cheese

2 c Swiss cheese, shredded

2 Tbs dried minced onion

3 Tbs minced fresh chives, divided

1 tsp salt

1 Tbs butter, cubed

1/2 tsp pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a Dutch oven, combine the first five ingredients; cook and stir over medium heat until blended. Stir in the potatoes. In a greased 9x13 inch pan or 3-quart baking dish, layer a third of the hash brown mixture and 2/3 cup Swiss cheese; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon chives. Repeat layers. Top with remaining hash brown mixture and cheese; dot with butter. Bake, covered, 35 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 10-20 minutes longer or until edges begin to brown and potatoes are heated through. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with remaining chives.

Spicy Sweet Potato Chips & Cilantro Dip**

3 large sweet potatoes (1 3/4 lb) , peeled and cut

1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

into 1/8 inch slices

DIP:

2 Tbs canola oil

3/4 c mayonnaise

1 tsp chili powder

1/2 c sour cream

1/2 tsp garlic powder

2 oz cream cheese, softened

1/2 tsp taco seasoning

4 1/2 tsp lemon juice

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp celery salt

1/4 tsp ground cumin

1/8 tsp pepper

1/4 tsp pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place sweet potatoes in a large bowl. In a small bowl mix oil and seasonings; drizzle over potatoes and toss to coat. Arrange half of the potatoes in a single layer in two ungreased 15x10x1 inch baking pans. Bake 25-30 minutes or until golden brown, turning once. Repeat with remaining potatoes. In a small bowl, beat dip ingredients together until blended. Serve with chips.

Smokey Baked Beans

1 lb bulk spicy pork sausage

1 can (10 oz) diced tomatoes and green

1 medium onion, chopped

chilies drained

2 cans (15 oz ea) pork and beans

1/2 c hickory smoke-flavored barbecue sauce

1 can (16 oz) kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1/2 c ketchup

1 can (16 oz) butter beans, rinsed and drained

1/2 c packed brown sugar

1 can (15 1/2 oz) navy beans, rinsed and drained

1 tsp ground mustard

1 can (15 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained

1 tsp steak seasoning

1 tsp liquid smoke, optional

In a large skillet, cook sausage and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. In a 5-quart slow cooker combine the beans, tomatoes and sausage mixture. In a small bowl, combine the barbecue sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, steak seasoning and liquid smoke, if desired. Stir into bean mixture. Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours or until heated through.

Garlic Sesame Green Beans**

3 lbs fresh green beans, trimmed

6 garlic cloves, minced

1 Tbs sesame oil

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 Tbs canola oil

1/2 tsp pepper

1 shallot, finely chopped

2 Tbs sesame seeds, toasted

In a Dutch oven, bring 10 cups of water to a boil. Add green beans; cook uncovered about 6-8 minutes or until tender. Meanwhile, in a small skillet, heat oils over medium heat. Add shallot, garlic, salt and pepper; cook and stir 2-3 minutes or until tender. Drain green beans and return to Dutch oven. Add the shallot mixture; toss to coat. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve.

July 8, 2017

Alfredo Chicken Lasagna

6 oz boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into

3/4 c cottage cheese (2%)

bite-size pieces

1/4 c plus 2 Tbs shredded Parmesan, divided

1 c fresh mushrooms, sliced

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 Tbs onion, chopped

1/2 tsp Italian seasoning

1 Tbs olive oil

1/2 tsp dried parsley flakes

1 garlic clove, minced

4 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained

1 Tbs all-purpose flour

1 1/2 c shredded mozzarella cheese

1 c Alfredo sauce

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet, saute the chicken, mushrooms and onion in oil until chicken is no longer pink. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in flour until blended and gradually stir in Alfredo sauce. Bring to a boil, and reduce heat simmering uncovered for 3-5 minutes or until thickened. In a small bowl, combine the cottage cheese, ¼ c Parmesan cheese, egg, Italian seasoning and parsley. Spread ½ c Alfredo mixture in a 8x4 inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Layer; with two noodles (trimmed to fit pan), half of the cottage cheese mixture, half of the remaining Alfredo mixture and ¾ cup mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 10 minutes longer or until bubbly. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.

Bow Tie Pasta Salad w Chicken and Peppers**

6 oz bow tie pasta

freshly ground pepper

2 large ripe tomatoes, seeded and diced

2 bell peppers, one red, one yellow; halved

2 Tbs red wine vinegar, divided

length-wise and seeded

3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil, divided

1 small rotisserie chicken, shredded into large pcs

1 Tbs Dijon mustard

2 Tbs fresh parsley, chopped

Position a rack about 6 inches from broiler and heat to high. Bring a medium large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain well and rinse under cold running water. Spread out on paper towels to absorb excess moisture. Meanwhile, put the tomatoes in a small bowl and stir in 1 tablespoon vinegar, 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Set aside to soften for about 15 minutes. Arrange the peppers on a broiling pan, cut side down and broil, until blistered and black in spots. Transfer to a bowl and cover allowing to steam for 10-15 minutes. Rinse or scrape off the skin and dice. Mix the remaining vinegar and mustard in a large bowl, season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and some pepper. Whisk in the remaining olive oil until smooth. Add the tomatoes with the accumulated juices, the roasted peppers and parsley. Toss lightly. Just before serving, add the chicken and pasta and toss gently to combine.

Marlboro Man's Favorite Sandwich

1 small onion

1/4 c Worcestershire sauce

6 Tbs butter, divided

hot sauce (Tabasco)

1 1/2 lbs cube steak

2 French rolls

seasoned salt

Slice the onion and cook in 2 tablespoons butter until soft and light brown. Remove and set aside. Slice the cube steak against the grain, and sprinkle with seasoned salt. In the same skillet, heat 2 tablespoons butter over high heat until melted and beginning to brown. Add the meat in a single layer. Cook one side until brown, and then flip and cook until browned, about a minute on both sides. Add Worcestershire sauce, 5-6 shakes hot sauce and 2 tablespoons butter. Add the cooked onions and stir to combine. Butter the halved French rolls and toast in a skillet. To assemble, lay the bottom half of a French roll on a plate, place the meat mixture followed by a spoonful of juice from the pan. Top with the other half of the roll, cut in half and eat!

Spinach Chicken Roll**

1 Tbs onion, finely chopped

1/4 tsp dill weed

1 tsp olive oil

1 boneless skinless chicken breast (6 oz)

3 c fresh baby spinach

2 Tbs crumbled Feta cheese

In a small non-stick skillet saute onion in oil over medium heat until tender. Add spinach, cook and stir for 2-3 minutes or just until wilted. Stir in dill. Remove from the heat. Flatten chicken to 1/4 inch thickness. Place spinach mixture and feta cheese down the center, fold one side over filling and roll up tightly. Secure with a toothpick. Place seam side down in the skillet, cover and cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes or until chicken juices run clear, turning occasionally. Discard toothpick and serve.

July 1, 2017

Grilled Pork Tenderloin w Corn on Cob

1 1/2 lb pork tenderloin

1/2 tsp garlic powder

4 ears corn, husked

2 tsp olive oil plus more for brushing

MARINADE:

SAUCE:

1 Tbs paprika

3/4 c apple cider vinegar

2 tsp salt

1/3 c water

1/2 tsp pepper

3 Tbs packed light brown sugar

1 tsp packed light brown sugar

2 Tbs ketchup

1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1 tsp mustard powder

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp onion powder

Combine the marinade ingredients together in a bowl and set aside. Rub the olive oil all over the pork, then coat with the marinade. Wrap each tenderloin tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate 3-6 hours. Combine the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves; remove from the heat. About 30 minutes before grilling. Preheat grill to medium high. Cook the pork, turning occasionally, until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 140 degrees. This takes about 20 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest 15 minutes. Meanwhile, brush the corn with olive oil; grill, turning until marked, about 5 minutes. Slice the pork and drizzle with the sauce. Serve with the corn.

Potato Salad w Peas**

2 lbs red skinned potatoes, chopped

3/4 c sour cream

2 Tbs cider vinegar

1/2 c chives, chopped

1 1/2 c frozen peas

1/2 c fresh dill, chopped

3/4 c mayonnaise

salt and pepper

Place the potatoes in a pot of lightly salted water and bring to a boil. Simmer until tender. Transfer the potatoes to a bowl with a slotted spoon and sprinkle with salt and the cider vinegar. Add the peas to the hot water in the pot and simmer for 5 minutes or until tender. Drain, rinse and add to the potatoes. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream the chives and the dill. Toss with the potatoes and peas, then salt and pepper to taste.

BLT Burgers w Bacon Mayonnaise

1 1/2 lbs ground beef chuck

3 Tbs packed light brown sugar

salt and pepper

pinch of cayenne pepper

2 Tbs canola oil

pinch of ground cinnamon

4 slices cheddar cheese

BACON MAYONNAISE:

8 slices Texas toast, toasted

3 slices thick cut bacon

romaine lettuce

2 Tbs sour cream

sliced tomatoes

1 Tbs chives, chopped

CANDIED BACON:

salt and pepper

4 slices thick cut bacon

CANDIED BACON: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix the brown sugar, cayenne and cinnamon in a small bowl. Arrange the bacon on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with half of the sugar-spice mixture. Bake 10 minutes, then flip and sprinkle with the remaining sugar-spice mixture and bake 10 more minutes. Remove the bacon from the oven and let cool. BACON MAYONNAISE: Cook the bacon in a skillet over medium heat, turning occasionally until crisp, 8-10 minutes. Drain on paper Towels then finely dice. Whisk the mayonnaise and sour cream in a small bowl. Stir in the diced bacon and chives and season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. BURGERS: Shape the ground chuck into four equal sized patties, about 3 ½ inches in diameter. Heat your grill or cast-iron skillet over high heat and add canola oil to the grate or skillet. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side. Add a slice of cheddar to each, cover and continue to cook 2-3 more minutes for medium rare. Now build the burgers: smear the bacon mayonnaise on the toast, serving the patties on the toast with the lettuce tomato and candied bacon.

Frozen Mango Cocktail**

1 lb frozen mango chunks, partially thawed

1/2 c water

1 1/2 c ice

3/4 c tequila

1 c fresh mint

3 Tbs fresh lime juice (3 large limes)

1/2 c sugar

lime wedges for garnish

In a small heavy saucepan, bring the mint, sugar and water to a boil over medium heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Cool to room temperature. Strain the mint syrup through a fine mesh sieve into a blender. Press firmly on the mint leaves to release all of the syrup. Add the tequila, lime juice, mango chunks and ice. Blend until pureed. Pour into chilled glasses and garnish with the lime wedges.

June 24, 2017

Endive w Feta and Strawberries

24 large Belgian endive leaves (from four

1/4 tsp sea salt

heads; about 8 ounces)

4 tsp extra-virgin olive oil

3 oz feta or soft goat cheese

1 Tbs honey

1 1/2 c sliced small to medium strawberries

1 Tbs finely chopped fresh basil

1/4 c toasted chopped walnuts

Arrange endive on a platter. Crumble a little bit of goat cheese onto each leaf. Top with strawberries and walnuts. Sprinkle with salt. Drizzle with oil and honey and sprinkle with basil.

Hawaiian Turkey Sliders**

1 lb 93%-lean ground turkey

1 small red onion, cut into 1/4 inch thick rings

2 Tbs reduced-sodium teriyaki sauce

toasted slider buns, preferably whole wheat

2 scallions, sliced

2 Tbs mayonnaise

1 large garlic, minced

6 small leaves Boston lettuce

1/4 inch fresh pineapple rings

Preheat grill to medium-high. Combine turkey, teriyaki sauce, scallions and garlic in a medium bowl; gently knead together. Do not overmix. Form into six burgers, about 3 inches wide. Oil the grill rack. Grill the burgers until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 165°F, 2-3 minutes per side. Grill pineapple rings until lightly charred, about 2 minutes per side. Grill onions until lightly charred and starting to soften, about 2 minutes per side. Assemble the burgers on toasted buns with 1 teaspoon mayonnaise, 1 lettuce leaf, 1 pineapple ring and about 3 onions each.

Sweet Potato Skins w Guacamole

4 small sweet potatoes

1 Tbs lime juice

1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

1/8 tsp kosher salt

1/8 tsp salt

1/2 c shredded cheddar cheese

1/4 c chopped tomato

GUACAMOLE & TOPPINGS:

2 Tbs minced red onion

1 ripe avocado

chopped cilantro, for garnish

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Tightly wrap sweet potatoes in foil and place on a baking sheet. Roast until very tender, 50-60 minutes. Carefully unwrap and set aside to cool. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop out the flesh, leaving a ¼-inch border (save the scooped-out flesh for another use). Place the sweet potato halves skin-side up on the prepared baking sheet. Brush with oil and sprinkle with kosher salt. Bake until browned and crisp, 20-30 minutes. Cut each skin in half widthwise and return to the baking sheet, skin-side down. Sprinkle each with 1 tablespoon cheddar. Return to the oven and bake until the cheese is melted, 8-10 minutes. Meanwhile, make the guacamole: Mash avocado in a medium bowl. Stir in lime juice, garlic and salt. Top each sweet potato skin with guacamole, tomato, onion and cilantro, if desired.

Watermelon Slush (per serving)

3 c diced watermelon

1 c crushed ice

2 Tbs lime juice

1/2 c water

1 Tbs sugar

Blend watermelon, lime juice, sugar, ice and water in a blender until smooth.

Raspberry Limeade

2/3 c fresh lime juice

3 c seltzer

1/2 c sugar

ice cubes

1 1/2 c raspberries, fresh or frozen (thawed)

Combine lime juice and sugar in a large pitcher, stirring to help dissolve the sugar. Place berries in a fine-mesh sieve over a bowl. Use a rubber spatula to press on the berries, extracting the juice and some pulp while leaving the seeds behind. Stir the puree into the pitcher. Just before serving, stir in seltzer. Serve over ice.

June 17, 2017

Tater Tot Breakfast Skillet

1 bag (1 1/2 lb) tater tots

2 pkgs dry country gravy mix (per directions)

1 pkg (8 oz) breakfast sausage

8 eggs, beaten

olive oil

salt and pepper

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 c Monterey Jack cheese, shredded and divided

3/4 c mushrooms, chopped

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and place tater tots on a baking sheet. Bake for 12 minutes or until golden and crispy. Reduce heat of oven to 300 degrees. In a large skillet, cook the sausage, crumbling as it becomes more done. Drain and set aside. Add a bit of oil to the skillet and stir fry the red bell pepper and mushrooms until tender. In a bowl, whisk the eggs with 2-3 tablespoons water until fluffy. Salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat to low and add the eggs to the peppers and mushrooms stirring occasionally to cook evenly. On four oven-safe plates, place a layer of tater tots, then some sausage, then a portion of the country gravy. Top this with some of the egg mixture, then with a portion of shredded Monterey Jack cheese. Place in the oven for 5 minutes to warm completely and begin to melt the cheese. Serve with crunchy buttered toast and jam.

Steak and Potato Skillet

2 large russet potatoes

salt and pepper

seasoned salt

1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

olive oil

1 small sweet onion, sliced

2 (4 oz) rib eye or top sirloin steaks

8 oz low moisture shredded Mozzarella cheese

Rinse and pat dry the steaks, and rub with salt and pepper. Place in a sealable container and let set at room temperature for 30 minutes or more. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and rub a generous amount of olive oil on a baking sheet. Peel the potatoes and slice into large steak fry strips. Brush with a bit more olive oil and dust both sides with seasoned salt. Place in the oven and bake for 15 or more minutes, turning once at the midway point. Remove when golden brown and reduce oven to 325 degrees. Preheat your skillet to medium high and place steaks in to sear, turning once after the first side looks sealed. Reduce heat to medium low and add ½ tablespoon Worcestershire sauce to each steak. Cover and cook for 5 minutes checking until just done. Remove steaks to a plate and return skillet to a medium heat. Adding olive oil if needed, place the onion slices in the skillet and stir; sautéing and reducing heat as they become done. Leave in pan and continue to stir as they become caramelized. Return the steaks to the pan placing the onions on top of them. Add the potato fries also, arranging them around the steaks. Top with the Mozzarella cheese and place in the oven long enough for the cheese to melt thoroughly.

Pork Chop and Mushroom Skillet

4 center cup pork chops, trimmed

1 carrot, peeled and diced fine

olive oil

1 stalk celery, trimmed and diced fine

1 egg, beaten

1/4 c butter

4 Tbs or more all-purpose flour

1/2 c all-purpose flour

salt and pepper

1 3/4 c milk

1 c vegetable broth

1 c rice

1-2 cubes chicken bullion, dissolved

1 3/4 c water

1/2 lb baby bella mushrooms, sliced

Preheat a bit of olive oil in a skillet on medium high heat. Place beaten egg in a bowl and place 4 tablespoons flour on a plate, adding the salt and pepper to taste. Dredge the pork chops in the flour, then the egg. Cook for 3-5 minutes per side, or until done. Remove and set aside. In the same pan, scrape up the bits and add the vegetable broth and bullion. Sautee the carrot, celery and mushrooms until tender. Remove and set aside. On medium heat, add the butter to the remaining vegetable broth, melting it. Add the flour bit by bit, stirring until all the moisture is completely absorbed and you have a rue. Gently add the milk, little at a time, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat as the sauce begins to thicken, adding more milk if too thick. Add the vegetables and mushrooms to the sauce and season to taste. Prepare the rice in a pan of salted water, bringing to a boil, then cover and remove from heat. Serve the pork chops and vegetable gravy over the rice.

Weeknight Beef Skillet**

3 c uncooked yolk-free whole wheat noodles

1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning

1 lb lean ground beef

1 tsp sugar, optional

1 medium green pepper, finely chopped

1 pkg (16 oz) frozen mixed vegetables, thawed

1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce

and drained

1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

1/4 c minced fresh parsley

Cook noodles according to package directions; drain. Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, cook beef and pepper over medium heat 5-7 minutes or until beef is no longer pink, breaking up beef into crumbles; drain. Add tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, Italian seasoning and, if desired, sugar to beef mixture; bring to a boil. Stir in vegetables; heat through. Serve with noodles; sprinkle with parsley.

June 10, 2017

Mini Mushroom and Sausage Quiches

8 oz turkey breakfast sausage, crumbled

1 tsp ground pepper

1 tsp olive oil

5 eggs

8 oz mushrooms, sliced

3 egg whites

1/4 c sliced scallions or green onions

1 c 1% milk

Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 325 degrees. Coat a nonstick muffin tin generously with cooking spray. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, adding sausage and cooking until golden brown, 6-8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl to cool. Add oil to the pan. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, 5-7 minutes. Transfer mushrooms to the bowl with the sausage. Let cool for 5 minutes. Stir in scallions, cheese and pepper. In a medium bowl whisk eggs, egg whites and milk. Divide the egg mixture evenly among the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle a heaping tablespoon of the sausage mixture into each cup. Bake until the tops are just beginning to brown, 25 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Place a rack on top of the pan, flip it over and turn the quiches out onto the rack. Turn upright and let cool completely. Individually wrap and refrigerate.

1/4 c Swiss cheese, shredded

Creamy Avocado and White Bean Wraps**

2 Tbs cider vinegar

1/4 c fresh cilantro, chopped

1 Tbs canola oil

1 (15 oz) can white beans, rinsed

2 tsp chipotle chile in adobo sauce (canned)

1 ripe avocado

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 c sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

2 c red cabbage, shredded

2 Tbs red onion, minced

1 medium carrot, shredded

4 (8-10 inch) whole wheat wraps or tortillas

Whisk vinegar, oil, chipotle chile and salt in a medium bowl. Add cabbage, carrot and cilantro; toss to combine. In another medium bowl mash the beans and avocado with a potato masher or fork. Stir in cheese and onion. To assemble the wraps, spread about ½ cup of the bean-avocado mixture onto a wrap (or tortilla) and top with about ⅔ cup of the cabbage-carrot slaw. Roll up. Repeat. Cut the wraps in half to serve, if desired. For ease in porting, wrap individually in foil and chill.

Italian Deli Pasta Salad

1 lb penne pasta, cooked, drained and cooled

1 c provolone cheese, diced

1/3 c mayonnaise

1 c salami, diced

2 Tbs olive oil

1/4 c parsley, chopped

2 Tbs red wine vinegar

1/4 c fresh basil, chopped

1 (16 oz) jar Giardiniera, drained and chopped

salt and pepper

In a large bowl, place the penne pasta, adding the mayonnaise, olive oil and vinegar, mixing until just combined. Toss in the Giardiniera, the provolone and salami, again, mixing as you go. Finish by adding the parsley, basil, salt and pepper. Cover and chill before serving.

Hiker's Chocolate Bark**

3/4 c roasted shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped

1 tsp freshly grated orange zest

3/4 c dried cherries or cranberries

24 oz bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped, divided

Line the bottom and sides of a jelly-roll pan or baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. Toss pistachios with cherries (or cranberries) in a medium bowl. Divide the mixture in half; stir orange zest into 1 portion. Melt 18 ounces chocolate in a double boiler over hot water. (Alternatively, microwave on low in 30-second bursts.) Stir often with a rubber spatula so it melts evenly. Remove the top pan and wipe dry (or remove the bowl from the microwave). Stir in the remaining chocolate, in two additions, until thoroughly melted and smooth. Add the pistachio mixture containing the orange zest to the chocolate; stir to mix well. Working quickly, scrape the chocolate onto the prepared pan, spreading it to an even ¼-inch thickness with a rubber spatula. Sprinkle the remaining pistachio mixture on top; gently press it into the chocolate with your fingertips. Refrigerate, uncovered, just until set, about 20 minutes. Invert the pan onto a large cutting board. Remove the pan and peel off the foil or paper. Using the tip of a sharp knife, score the chocolate lengthwise with 6 parallel lines. Break bark along the score lines. Break the strips of bark into 2-3 inch chunks. Keep in airtight container or wrap individually if desired.

June 3, 2017

Quick Pastrami Hash and Eggs

2 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil

1 tsp paprika

1 (16-18 oz) pkg precooked diced potatoes or

1/4 tsp salt

3 medium potatoes diced

1/4 tsp pepper

1 onion, quartered and thinly sliced

5 oz deli pastrami, diced (1 cup)

1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced

4 large eggs

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium and add potatoes, onion, bell pepper, paprika, salt and pepper. Stir to combine, and then spread in an even layer in the pan and cook, undisturbed, for 3 minutes. Stir in pastrami, spread back into an even layer and cook undisturbed again until a crust starts to form on the bottom, about 5 minutes more. Remove from the heat and cover to keep warm. Just after you add the pastrami to the hash, coat another large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and place over medium heat. Crack each egg into a small bowl and slip them, one at a time, into the skillet, taking care not to break the yolks. Season with salt and pepper to taste, if desired. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook undisturbed for about 2 minutes for soft-set yolks. Divide the hash among 4 plates and top each serving with an egg.

Spring Salad w Peas and Shallots**

1 1/2 c shallots, thinly sliced

1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper

6 Tbs olive oil

6 c torn red leaf lettuce

3 Tbs white wine vinegar

4 c torn frisee (endive)

1 Tbs whole grain mustard

1 c fresh or frozen peas

1 Tbs fresh tarragon or 1 tsp dried

2 hard cooked eggs, chopped

1/4 tsp salt

Separate shallot slices into rings. Heat oil in a small stainless-steel skillet (or small saucepan) over medium-high heat. Add half the shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until browned, 4-7 minutes. With a slotted spoon transfer the shallots to a plate lined with paper towels. Cook the remaining shallots and also add to plate. Pour the hot oil into a large, heat-resistant bowl (about ¼ to ⅓ cup); let cool for 10 minutes. Whisk in vinegar, mustard, tarragon, salt and pepper until well combined. Add lettuce, frisee, peas and eggs and toss to combine. Divide among 6 plates. Top each portion with about 3 tablespoons frizzled shallots.

Chicken Taco Bowls

8 (6 inch) corn tortillas

1 c green salsa

1 large (12 oz) boneless skinless chicken breast,

1/2 c sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

cut into 1/2 inch pieces

1/2 c sour cream

1 tsp garlic powder

1 c lettuce thinly sliced or shredded

1/4 tsp salt

1 medium tomato, chopped

1 Tbs olive or canola oil

2 Tbs ripe black olives, sliced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat tortillas until warm. Coat each side of 4 tortillas with cooking spray. (Keep remaining tortillas covered.) Turn a 12-cup muffin tin upside down. Nestle the tortillas in the spaces between 4 cups to form a "bowl". Bake until firm and beginning to brown, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Repeat with the remaining tortillas. Meanwhile, toss chicken with garlic powder and salt in a bowl. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook, stirring, until it is no longer pink on the outside, about 3 minutes. Add salsa and cook, stirring, until the chicken is done, about 3 minutes more. Cover and remove from the heat. Fill each tortilla bowl with about 1/4 cup of the chicken mixture. Top with 1 tablespoon each cheese and sour cream, some lettuce and tomato and a few olives.

Apricot Strawberry Buckwheat Shortcakes**

SHORTCAKES:

1 c buttermilk

1 c white whole-wheat flour

1/4 c heavy cream

1 c light buckwheat flour

FILLING/TOPPING:

3 Tbs sugar

vanilla bean, split lengthwise or 1 tsp vanilla extract

1 Tbs baking powder

3 Tbs sugar, divided, plus more as needed

1/4 tsp baking soda

4 c fresh apricots and/or strawberries, sliced

1/4 tsp salt

1 c heavy cream

5 Tbs cold, unsalted butter, cut into cubes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine whole-wheat flour, buckwheat flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or two knives until it is the size of peas. Make a well in the mixture and pour in buttermilk and cream (don't wash the measuring cup yet). Stir gently to combine. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and pat it into a rectangle about 1 inch thick. Repeat two times. Cut the dough into 10 equal-size shortcakes. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Brush with the dregs of cream left in the measuring cup. Bake the shortcakes until golden and cooked through, 20-25 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. TOPPING: About 30 minutes before serving, if using vanilla bean, use the tip of a paring knife to scrape the seeds into a large bowl. Add 2 tablespoons sugar and rub the seeds into it with your fingers. Add apricots and/or strawberries (and vanilla extract, if using instead of a bean); gently stir to combine. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Taste the fruit and add 1 to 2 tablespoons sugar, if desired. To serve, beat the cream and the remaining sugar in a chilled glass or metal bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Slice each shortcake in half horizontally, top with 1/4 cup fruit and some of the cream.

 

 

May 27, 2017

Sweet and Sour Chicken Drumsticks

1/2 tsp freshly grated orange zest

1/4 tsp ground coriander

1/4 c orange juice

1 tsp cornstarch

1/4 c water

1/4 c chopped fresh mint

3 Tbs honey

8 chicken drumsticks (about 2 lbs) skin removed

1 Tbs plus 1 tsp cider vinegar, divided

and trimmed

1/2 tsp salt, divided

1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper

Preheat grill to medium. To prepare dipping sauce, combine orange zest, orange juice, water, honey, 1 tablespoon vinegar, ¼ teaspoon salt and coriander in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Whisk cornstarch and the remaining vinegar in a small bowl until smooth. Add to the saucepan and return to a boil, stirring until thickened, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove from the heat. Stir in mint. Sprinkle drumsticks with the remaining salt and pepper. Oil the grill rack. Grill the drumsticks until crispy on all sides and a thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 165 degrees, about 15 minutes total. Serve the drumsticks with the dipping sauce on the side. Broiler variation: Position oven rack in the upper third of the oven; preheat broiler to high.

Grilled Peaches and Cream**

4 peaches, halved and pitted

1 c soft cream cheese w/honey and nuts

2 Tbs clover honey

1 Tbs vegetable oil

Preheat a grill for medium-high heat. Brush peaches with a light coating of oil. Place pit side down onto the grill. Grill for 5 minutes, or until the surfaces have nice grill marks. Turn the peaches over, and drizzle with a bit of honey. Place a dollop of the cream cheese spread in the place where the pit was. Grill for 2-3 more minutes, or until the filling is warm. Serve immediately.

Spicy Grilled Shrimp

1 large clove garlic

2 Tbs olive oil

1 Tbs coarse salt

2 tsp lemon juice

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 lbs large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 tsp paprika

8 wedges lemon, for garnish

Preheat grill for medium heat. In a small bowl, crush the garlic with the salt. Mix in cayenne pepper and paprika, and then stir in olive oil and lemon juice to form a paste. In a large bowl, toss shrimp with garlic paste until evenly coated. Lightly oil grill grate. Cook shrimp for 2-3 minutes per side, or until opaque. Transfer to a serving dish, garnish with lemon wedges, and serve.

German Style Beer Brats**

1/4 c butter

4 (12 oz) bottles dark beer

2 medium onions, thinly sliced

2 lbs fresh bratwurst

3 cloves garlic, chopped

10 hot dog buns

Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat and lightly oil grate. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat, cook and stir the sliced onions for 5-10 minutes, or until tender and translucent. Add the chopped garlic and cook, stirring, for an additional 2 minutes. Add the beer and let simmer while the bratwursts are cooking on the grill. Grill the bratwursts for 30-35 minutes, turning often. Be careful not to poke holes in the casing. Remove the bratwursts from the grill and simmer in the beer sauce for an additional 10-15 minutes. Serve hot with onions on the rolls.

May 20, 2017

Easy Pumpkin Muffins

2 c whole wheat flour

1/2 tsp allspice

1/2 c Sucanat

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

8 oz solid pack pure pumpkin

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 c water

1 tsp cinnamon

1/3 c unsweetened applesauce

1/2 tsp ginger

1/2 c chopped pecans, optional

1/2 tsp nutmeg

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners, or use a non-stick pan. Mix together the flour, Sucanat, baking powder, baking soda and spices in a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients one by one, until all are blended. Fill the prepared muffin cups to the top, and bake 25-30 minutes; until the tops bounce back when lightly pressed. Remove from the pan and let stand 1-2 minutes; then remove from the muffin pan. Cool for 30 minutes before serving.

Baked Vegetables w/Fresh Spinach**

1 medium onion, sliced

2 c cooked brown rice

1 green bell pepper, seeded and julienned

SAUCE:

1 sweet potato, cut into bite-size pcs

1/4 c balsamic vinegar

1 crown broccoli, cut into bite-size pcs

1/4 c maple syrup

1/2 lb mushrooms

1/4 c almond slivers

1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved

1 Tbs freshly squeezed orange juice

1 medium zucchini, sliced

1 tsp dried thyme

garlic powder

1 tsp dried basil

onion powder

1 tsp dried rosemary

sea salt and black pepper

1 clove garlic, minced

8 c fresh spinach

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare all the vegetables except the spinach and place in a large baking pan lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle with garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Bake vegetables for 20 minutes. While the vegetables are baking, whisk together all of the ingredients for the sauce. Place the spinach in a large serving bowl. Combine the cooked vegetables and the sauce. Serve warm over spinach and brown rice.

Zesty Bulgur Stew

6 c vegetable broth, divided

1/2 c yellow lentils

2 cloves garlic

1/2 c sweet potatoes, diced

1 medium onion, diced

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

1 can (15 oz) chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 tsp sea salt

1/2 c bulgur

1 Tbs ground coriander

Saute garlic and onions in two tablespoons vegetable broth. Add remaining vegetable broth, chickpeas, bulgur and lentils in a soup pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer on low partially covered, for 15 minutes. Add the sweet potatoes and seasonings. Continue to cook until sweet potatoes and lentils are tender. Serve immediately.

Festival Corn Bread**

1 c corn meal

3/4 c corn, fresh or frozen (thawed)

1 c whole wheat flour

1/3 c unsweetened applesauce

1 tsp baking powder

2 Tbs maple syrup

1 tsp baking soda

1 egg

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 1/3 c non-dairy milk

1/2 tsp tarragon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together the corn meal, whole wheat flour, baking powder and baking soda, salt and tarragon. Add the corn, applesauce and maple syrup to the dry ingredients and mix. Add the egg and milk and stir until everything is just blended. Pour into a 9x9 inch baking dish. Bake for 35 minutes, until the top is firm and beginning to brown; and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Note: For a more Italian flavor, add 1 teaspoon oregano and 1 teaspoon basil. Serve with beans and cooked kale or other greens.

May 13, 2017

Greek Bison Burgers

1 lb ground bison

YOGURT SAUCE:

1/2 c cooked spinach, squeezed dry

3/4 c nonfat or low-fat Greek style yogurt

1/2 c crumbled feta cheese ( prefer sheep's milk)

1 tsp freshly grated lemon zest

2 tsp chopped fresh dill

2 tsp lemon juice

1 tsp chopped fresh oregano

1 tsp chopped fresh dill

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp chopped fresh mint

1 tsp minced garlic

pinch of kosher salt

3/4 tsp kosher salt

TOPPINGS:

1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper

16 thin slices English cucumber

4 French rolls or 4-inch pieces of baguette,

8 slices vine-ripened tomato

preferable whole-wheat, split and toasted

4 thin slices red onion

Preheat grill to medium-high. Place bison, spinach, feta, dill, oregano, cumin, garlic, teaspoon salt and teaspoon pepper in a large mixing bowl. Gently combine without over mixing. Form into four patties roughly the size of the rolls. Oil the grill rack. Grill the burgers until a thermometer inserted into the center registers 155 degrees, 5-6 minutes per side. To prepare yogurt sauce: Combine yogurt, lemon zest and juice, dill and mint in a small bowl. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Assemble the burgers on rolls with the yogurt sauce, cucumber, tomato and onion.

Maple Mustard Tenderloin**

3 Tbs Dijon mustard, divided

2 tsp canola oil

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/4 c cider vinegar

1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper

2 Tbs maple syrup

1 lb pork tenderloin, trimmed

1 1/2 tsp chopped fresh sage

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Combine 1 tablespoon mustard, salt and pepper in a small bowl; rub all over pork. Heat the oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and brown on all sides, 3-5 minutes. Transfer the pan to the oven and roast until a thermometer inserted in the center registers 145 degrees, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes. Place the skillet over medium-high heat, add vinegar, and boil, scraping up any browned bits with a wooden spoon, about 30 seconds. Whisk in maple syrup and the remaining mustard; bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook until the sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes. Slice the pork. Add any accumulated juices to the sauce along with sage. Serve the pork topped with the sauce.

Chicken Greek Salad

1 8-oz boneless skinless chicken breast, trimmed

1 c halved cherry or grape tomatoes

1/4 c red wine vinegar

1/2 cucumber, sliced

3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 c crumbled feta cheese

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 c slivered fresh basil

1/4 tsp ground pepper

1/4 c sliced Kalamata olives

8 c chopped romaine (about 2 romaine hearts)

1/4 c slivered red onion

Place chicken in a medium saucepan and add water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the chicken reads 165 degrees, 12-15 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a clean cutting board and let cool for 5 minutes; shred or chop into bite-size pieces. Meanwhile, stir vinegar, oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the romaine, tomatoes, cucumber, feta, basil, olives, onion and the chicken; toss to coat. Serve with toasted crostini, brushed with olive oil and sprinkled with oregano.

Salmon w Roasted Vegetables and Quinoa**

2 small or 1 large delicata squash, halved, seeded

1 1/4 c water

and cut into 1inch wide slices or pieces

3/4 c red or white quinoa

4 c cauliflower florets

1 lb wild Alaskan fillet, skinned, cut into 4 portions

6 small shallots, quartered

olive oil or canola oil cooking spray

3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil, divided

3 Tbs lemon juice

3/4 tsp salt, divided

2 Tbs maple syrup

1/2 tsp ground pepper, divided

1/4 c chopped walnuts, toasted

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss squash, cauliflower and shallots with 2 tablespoons oil, ¼ teaspoon each of the salt and pepper, on a large rimmed baking sheet. Roast stirring once or twice, until the vegetables are tender and browned in spots, 20-25 minutes. Meanwhile, bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add quinoa and return to a boil. Reduce to a low simmer, cover and cook until the water is absorbed, 12-15 minutes. Remove from the heat. When the vegetables are tender, move the vegetables to one side of the pan and place salmon in the empty spot. Coat the salmon with a thin layer of cooking spray and season with ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Roast until the salmon is opaque in the middle, 4-6 minutes. Combine the remaining oil, lemon juice, maple syrup and ¼ teaspoon salt in a small bowl. Serve the quinoa, salmon and vegetables drizzled with the dressing and topped with walnuts.

May 6, 2017

Broccoli Ham and Cheese Quiche

16 oz precooked shredded potatoes or

2 c finely chopped broccoli florets

frozen has browns (thawed)

1 c shredded extra-sharp Cheddar cheese

1 3/4 c egg substitute or 8 eggs, beaten, divided

3/4 c finely diced smoked ham

2 Tbs all purpose flour

3/4 c reduced-fat sour cream

1 Tbs canola oil or extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 c minced fresh chives

1/4 tsp salt

1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Generously coat a 9-inch spring form pan with cooking spray. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. If using hash browns, squeeze any excess moisture from the thawed potatoes. Toss shredded potatoes (or hash browns) with ¼ cup egg substitute (or 1 beaten egg), flour, oil and salt in a medium bowl. Pat the mixture into the bottom and 2 inches up the sides of the prepared spring form pan. Bake until the potatoes are beginning to brown at the edges, 35-40 minutes. Fill the crust with broccoli, cheese and ham. Whisk the remaining eggs, sour cream, chives and pepper in a medium bowl. Place the pan on the prepared baking sheet and pour the egg mixture over the filling. Bake the quiche until the center is just set, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool up to 15 minutes. Run a knife around the edges to loosen the sides, remove the pan sides and cut the quiche into wedges.

Multi-Grain Waffles**

2 c buttermilk

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 c old-fashioned rolled oats

1 tsp ground cinnamon

2/3 c whole-wheat flour

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

2/3 c all-purpose flour

1/4 c packed brown sugar

1/4 c toasted wheat germ, or cornmeal

1 Tbs canola oil

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp baking soda

Mix buttermilk and oats in a medium bowl; let stand for 15 minutes. Whisk whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, wheat germ (or cornmeal), baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl. Stir in the eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla into the oat mixture. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients; mix just until moistened. Coat a waffle iron with cooking spray and preheat. Spoon in enough batter to cover three-fourths of the surface (about ⅔ cup for an 8-by-8-inch waffle iron). Cook until the waffles are crisp and golden brown, 4-5 minutes. Repeat with remaining batter. Top with homemade maple syrup, or fruit sauce.

Apricot Wheat Germ Muffins

3/4 c dried apricots, chopped

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 c orange juice, divided

2 large eggs

1 c whole-wheat flour

1/2 c packed light brown sugar

3/4 c all-purpose flour

1 c buttermilk

3/4 c plus 1 Tbs toasted wheat germ, divided

1/4 c canola oil

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

2 Tbs freshly grated orange zest

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat 12 muffin cups with cooking spray. Combine apricots and ¼ cup orange juice in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat. Set aside to plump. Whisk whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, ¾ cup wheat germ, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Whisk eggs and brown sugar in a medium bowl until smooth. Whisk in buttermilk, oil, orange zest, vanilla and remaining ¼ cup orange juice. Add to the dry ingredients and mix, just until moistened. Add the plumped apricots and juice and mix just until blended. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon wheat germ. Bake the muffins until lightly browned and the tops spring back when touched lightly, 15-25 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Loosen the edges and turn the muffins out onto a wire rack to cool before serving.

Personal Florentine Hash Skillet**

1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 large egg

1/2 c frozen has browns or precooked shredded

pinch of salt

potatoes

pinch of freshly ground black pepper

1/2 c frozen chopped spinach

2 Tbs shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

Heat the oil in a small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Layer the hash browns and spinach into the pan. Crack egg on top and sprinkle with salt, pepper and cheese. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and cook until the hash browns are starting to brown on the bottom, the egg is set and the cheese is melted, 4-7 minutes.

April 22, 2017

Lemon Blueberry Cake-Baked Oatmeal

4 c milk

1 tsp vanilla

2 c quick-cooking oats

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 c butter, cut into tablespoons

1 1/2c fresh blueberries

1 box yellow cake mix

GLAZE:

3 eggs

1/2 c powdered sugar

1 Tbs finely grated lemon zest

1-2 Tbs fresh lemon juice

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray bottom and sides of 13x9 inch baking dish with cooking spray. In four-quart saucepan, heat milk over medium-high heat until just boiling. Reduce heat to medium; stir in oats with spoon. Cook 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Add butter; stir occasionally for 2-3 minutes or until butter has melted. Beat in cake mix, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla and salt with spoon until well blended. Stir in 1 cup of the blueberries. Pour into pan. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup berries on top. Bake 38-43 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 30 minutes before glazing. When ready to serve, in small bowl, stir powdered sugar and one tablespoon lemon juice until well blended. If frosting is too thick to drizzle, add additional lemon juice, one teaspoon at a time. Drizzle over cake.

 

Brioche French Toast**

6 extra large eggs

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 1/2 c half and half or milk

1 large loaf Brioche bread

1 tsp grated orange zest

unsalted butter

1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

vegetable oil

1 Tbs honey

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. In a large shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, orange zest, vanilla, honey, and salt. Slice the brioche in 3/4-inch thick slices. Soak as many slices in the egg mixture as possible for 5 minutes, turning once. Heat one tablespoon butter and one tablespoon oil in a very large skillet over medium heat. Add the soaked bread and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, until nicely browned. Place the cooked French toast on a sheet pan and keep it warm in the oven. Fry the remaining soaked bread slices, adding butter and oil as needed, until it's all cooked. Serve hot with maple syrup, raspberry preserves, and/or confectioners' sugar.

 

Wild Berry Oatmeal Cheesecake Muffins

1 c old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats

1 tsp baking powder

1 c buttermilk

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 ( 8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 c sugar

1 egg, beaten

3 Tbs orange zest

1/4 c butter, melted

1 c flour

1 c fresh or frozen mixed berries (blackberries,

3/4 c packed brown sugar

blueberries and raspberries)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine oats and buttermilk in medium bowl, let stand 10 minutes. Meanwhile, mix cream cheese, sugar and orange zest until blended and set aside. Combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add egg and butter to oat mixture and mix well. Add to flour mixture, stir just until moistened. Gently stir in the berries. Spoon half the batter evenly into 18 paper-lined muffin cups; top with cream cheese mixture. Cover with remaining batter. Bake 23-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Remove from pan to wire rack, cool completely.

 

Make Ahead Egg Bake

8 eggs

8 c French bread cubes (3/4 inch)

3 c milk

12 slices cooked bacon, crumbled

1 (8 oz) pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed

1 (8 oz) pkg sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

and squeezed dry

Whisk eggs and milk in large bowl until blended; stir in bread. Add spinach, bacon and 1 ½ cup cheese, mix lightly. Pour into 13x9 inch baking dish sprayed with cooking spray, top with remaining cheese. Refrigerate overnight. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake uncovered 48-50 minutes or until top is puffed and golden brown and knife inserted in center comes out clean.

April 29, 2017

Shrimp, Leek and Spinach Pasta

3/4 lb spiral, penne or other short pasta

1 lb peeled and deveined medium shrimp (raw)

2 Tbs unsalted butter

zest of 1 lemon, finely grated

2 leeks (white and light green parts only),

3/4 c heavy cream

halved lengthwise and then crosswise

12 c (10 oz) baby spinach

salt and black pepper

Cook the pasta according to the package directions; drain and return it to the pot. Meanwhile, heat the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the leeks have softened, 3-5 minutes. Add the shrimp and lemon zest and cook, tossing frequently, until the shrimp is opaque throughout, 4-5 minutes more. Add the cream and ½ teaspoon salt to the pasta in the pot and cook over medium heat, stirring, until slightly thickened, 1-2 minutes. Add the shrimp mixture and the spinach and toss to combine.

Pasta w Turkey and Broccoli**

3/4 lb orecchiette (or tortellini) pasta

1 tsp fennel seed

2 c broccoli florets

1/2 tsp crushed red pepper

3 Tbs olive oil, divided

salt, to taste

1 lb ground turkey

parmesan cheese, for serving

2 cloves garlic, chopped

Cook the pasta according to the package directions, adding the broccoli during the last minute. Drain and return the pasta and broccoli to the pot. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the turkey, garlic, fennel seed, and red pepper and cook, breaking up the meat with a spoon, until browned, approximately 5 minutes; season with salt. Toss the turkey mixture with the pasta and broccoli and the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Serve with Parmesan.

Spicy Braised Short Ribs

2 Fresno chiles, seeded and chopped

4 c low-sodium beef broth

1 Tbs salt

1 3/4 c dry red wine

2 tsp smoked paprika

1 can (14.5 oz) whole, peeled tomatoes, drained

2 tsp dried oregano

3 ribs celery, chopped

1 1/2 tsp black pepper

2 medium carrots, chopped (1 1/2 c)

1 tsp ground cumin

1 medium yellow onion, chopped (1 1/2 c)

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 c chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1/4 c plus 2 Tbs olive oil, divided

1/2 c chopped fresh mint

5 cloves garlic, chopped, divided

2 tsp lemon zest

8 bone-in beef short ribs (4-5 lbs)

Stir together chiles, salt, paprika, oregano, pepper, cumin, cinnamon, ¼ cup of the oil, and half the garlic in a medium bowl. Rub ribs all over with chile mixture; cover and chill 12-24 hours. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Let ribs stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Bring broth to a boil in a medium saucepan and cook until reduced by half, 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium. Working in batches, add ribs and cook until browned, about 3 minutes per side; transfer ribs to a platter. Remove pot from heat, discard drippings, and wipe clean. Pour wine into pot and bring to a boil. Cook until reduced to 1 cup, about 5 minutes. Add reduced broth and stir to combine. Add ribs to pot along with tomatoes, celery, carrots, and onion. Return to a boil, cover, and transfer to oven. Braise until meat is very tender and easily pulls away from the bone, 3 to 3½ hours. Meanwhile, stir together parsley, mint, lemon zest, and remaining half of garlic in a small bowl. Transfer ribs to a serving platter and tent with foil. Skim fat from cooking liquid and discard. Strain braising liquid and discard solids. Serve ribs with sauce, topped with parsley mixture.

Tot-Sangna (Tater Tot Lasagna)**

1 lb ground beef or ground turkey

1/2 c freshly grated Parmesan, divided

1 tsp garlic powder

1 container (15 oz) low-fat ricotta

1 jar (24 oz) marinara sauce

1 egg, beaten

1 c water

1 bag frozen tater tots

2 c shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Brown the ground beef on a skillet over medium-high heat. As it cooks, sprinkle on the garlic powder, mixing it into the meat. Drain any excess grease and return the meat to the skillet. Add the marinara sauce, then add the water to the skillet to thin out the sauce. Stir the sauce until it's combined, then turn off the burner. In a large mixing bowl, combine half the mozzarella and parmesan, all of the ricotta, and the egg. Pour enough meat sauce to lightly coat the bottom of a 13-x-9 inch pan. Top with a layer of tater tots, then the ricotta mixture, and a layer of meat sauce. Cover with another layer of tots, add more meat sauce, then sprinkle on the remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes, or until the cheese has melted and the tots are golden brown.

April 22, 2017

Lemon Blueberry Cake-Baked Oatmeal

4 c milk

1 tsp vanilla

2 c quick-cooking oats

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 c butter, cut into tablespoons

1 1/2c fresh blueberries

1 box yellow cake mix

GLAZE:

3 eggs

1/2 c powdered sugar

1 Tbs finely grated lemon zest

1-2 Tbs fresh lemon juice

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray bottom and sides of 13x9 inch baking dish with cooking spray. In four-quart saucepan, heat milk over medium-high heat until just boiling. Reduce heat to medium; stir in oats with spoon. Cook 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Add butter; stir occasionally for 2-3 minutes or until butter has melted. Beat in cake mix, eggs, lemon zest, vanilla and salt with spoon until well blended. Stir in 1 cup of the blueberries. Pour into pan. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup berries on top. Bake 38-43 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 30 minutes before glazing. When ready to serve, in small bowl, stir powdered sugar and one tablespoon lemon juice until well blended. If frosting is too thick to drizzle, add additional lemon juice, one teaspoon at a time. Drizzle over cake.

Brioche French Toast**

6 extra large eggs

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1 1/2 c half and half or milk

1 large loaf Brioche bread

1 tsp grated orange zest

unsalted butter

1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

vegetable oil

1 Tbs honey

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. In a large shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, orange zest, vanilla, honey, and salt. Slice the brioche in 3/4-inch thick slices. Soak as many slices in the egg mixture as possible for 5 minutes, turning once. Heat one tablespoon butter and one tablespoon oil in a very large skillet over medium heat. Add the soaked bread and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, until nicely browned. Place the cooked French toast on a sheet pan and keep it warm in the oven. Fry the remaining soaked bread slices, adding butter and oil as needed, until it's all cooked. Serve hot with maple syrup, raspberry preserves, and/or confectioners' sugar.

Wild Berry Oatmeal Cheesecake Muffins

1 c old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats

1 tsp baking powder

1 c buttermilk

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 ( 8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 c sugar

1 egg, beaten

3 Tbs orange zest

1/4 c butter, melted

1 c flour

1 c fresh or frozen mixed berries (blackberries,

3/4 c packed brown sugar

blueberries and raspberries)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine oats and buttermilk in medium bowl, let stand 10 minutes. Meanwhile, mix cream cheese, sugar and orange zest until blended and set aside. Combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add egg and butter to oat mixture and mix well. Add to flour mixture, stir just until moistened. Gently stir in the berries. Spoon half the batter evenly into 18 paper-lined muffin cups; top with cream cheese mixture. Cover with remaining batter. Bake 23-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Remove from pan to wire rack, cool completely.

Make Ahead Egg Bake

8 eggs

8 c French bread cubes (3/4 inch)

3 c milk

12 slices cooked bacon, crumbled

1 (8 oz) pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed

1 (8 oz) pkg sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

and squeezed dry

Whisk eggs and milk in large bowl until blended; stir in bread. Add spinach, bacon and 1 ½ cup cheese, mix lightly. Pour into 13x9 inch baking dish sprayed with cooking spray, top with remaining cheese. Refrigerate overnight. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake uncovered 48-50 minutes or until top is puffed and golden brown and knife inserted in center comes out clean.

April 15, 2017

Bacon Cheeseburger Meatloaf

3 slices bread, torn into small pieces

1/2 c finely chopped onion

1/2 c milk

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 1/2 lb lean ground beef

1 egg, slightly beaten

8 slices bacon, crisply cooked and crumbled

TOPPING:

1 c finely shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (4 oz)

1/3 c ketchup

1/4 c dill pickle relish

1 Tbs packed brown sugar

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 9x5-inch loaf pan with foil; spray foil with cooking spray. In large bowl, mix bread and milk. Let stand 5 minutes to absorb milk. Add beef, all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon, shredded cheese, relish, onion, garlic and egg. Mix until well combined. Shape mixture into an 8x4-inch loaf. Place in pan. In small bowl, stir together topping ingredients. Spread on top and sides of loaf. Top with reserved bacon. Bake uncovered 50-75 minutes or until meat thermometer inserted in center of loaf reads 160°F. Cool 10 minutes. Cut meatloaf into slices to serve. Top with desired burger toppings, such as pickle relish, ketchup and mustard.

Mashed Potato Stuffed Meatloaf**

3 large russet potatoes, peeled, boiled and mashed

3/4 c Italian style bread crumbs

1/4 c butter

1/2 c ketchup

1/4 c milk

1/4 c chopped green onions (4 medium)

1/2 c shredded Cheddar cheese

2 eggs

1 1/2 lb lean ground beef

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 9x5-inch loaf pan with shortening. Set aside. In pan potatoes were boiled in, add the butter and milk to the potatoes, and mash or whip until smooth. Add the cheese, stirring in thoroughly. In large bowl, mix remaining ingredients until well blended. Firmly press half of beef mixture into pan, making a well in the center. Spoon potatoes over beef mixture to within ¼ inch of edges of pan. Spoon remaining beef mixture over potatoes; press edges together gently. Bake 60-65 minutes or until meat thermometer inserted in center of loaf reads 160 degrees. Let loaf stand 10 minutes; remove from pan.

Classic Diner Meatloaf

1 lb lean ground beef

1 tsp chopped fresh or 1/4 tsp dried sage leaves

1 clove garlic or 1/8 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp salt

1 small onion

1/4 tsp ground mustard

2 slices bread with crust

1/8 tsp pepper

1/4 c milk

1 large egg

2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1/3 c ketchup, chili sauce or barbecue sauce

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, break up the beef into small pieces, using a fork or spoon. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Peel the onion, and chop enough of the onion into small pieces to measure three tablespoons. Add the garlic and onion to the beef. Tear the bread into small pieces and add to beef mixture. Add the milk, Worcestershire sauce, sage, salt, mustard, pepper and egg to the beef mixture. Mix with your hands until the ingredients are well mixed. Place the beef mixture in an ungreased 8x4-inch loaf pan, and spread the ketchup over the top. Bake uncovered 50-60 minutes until meat and juices are no longer pink or until a meat thermometer inserted in the center of the loaf reads 160 degrees. Let the loaf stand 5 minutes so it will be easier to remove from the pan. Remove loaf from pan and cut into slices.

Rolled Italian Meatloaf**

1 1/4 lb extra-lean ground beef

1/4 c Italian style bread crumbs

3/4 lb bulk Italian sausage

1/4 tsp pepper

1 egg

2 c shredded six-cheese Italian blend

1 (8 oz) can pizza sauce

2 c loosely packed fresh spinach leaves

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In large bowl, mix ground beef, sausage, egg and a half-cup of the pizza sauce, bread crumbs and pepper. On foil, pat mixture to12x8-inch rectangle. Sprinkle evenly with cheese; gently press into meat. Top with spinach. Starting at short end, roll up tightly, using foil to start roll and tucking in spinach leaves; seal ends. Place seam side down in ungreased 12x8-inch glass baking dish. Bake 1 hour. Spread remaining pizza sauce over top. Bake 15 minutes longer or until thermometer inserted in meatloaf reads 160 degrees. Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving.

April 8, 2017

Very Berry Yogurt Pie

CRUST:

FILLING:

1 1/2 c finely crushed Toasted O's cereal

1 c sliced fresh strawberries

3 Tbs creamy vanilla yogurt

1 c fresh blueberries

2 Tbs packed brown sugar

2 c creamy vanilla yogurt

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9-inch glass pie plate with cooking spray. In medium bowl, stir crust ingredients until well blended. Press mixture firmly and evenly against bottom and side of pie plate. Bake 5-10 minutes or until set and just starting to brown; cool completely. In medium bowl, gently stir filling ingredients until blended; spoon into cooled crust. Cover and freeze at least 4 hours or overnight before serving.

Mud Pie**

1 c granulated sugar

1 c chopped nut, optional

1/2 c butter or margarine, melted

1/4 c hot fudge sauce or topping

1/3 c all purpose flour

1 c heavy whipping cream

1/3 c baking cocoa

2 Tbs powdered sugar

1 tsp vanilla

2-3 Tbs hot fudge sauce or topping, optional

1/4 tsp salt

additional nuts, optional

2 eggs

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Grease bottom and side of 8 inch round pan, or 9 inch pie pan. Stir together granulated sugar, butter, flour, cocoa, vanilla, salt and eggs in medium bowl. Stir in nuts. Pour into pan. Bake 25-30 minutes or until edge appears dry and toothpick inserted halfway between center and edge comes out clean (center will be moist). Immediately prick holes in pie with toothpick. Spread optional 1/4 cup fudge sauce over top. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Beat whipping cream and powdered sugar in chilled medium bowl with electric mixer on high speed until stiff. Spread over fudge sauce. Drizzle with remaining optional fudge sauce and nuts. Cover and refrigerate any remaining pie.

Chess Pie

1 refrigerated pie crust, softened as directed on box

1/4 c whole milk

2 c granulated sugar

1 Tbs white vinegar

2 Tbs fine-ground yellow cornmeal

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 Tbs all purpose flour

4 eggs

1/4 tsp salt

powdered sugar, optional

1/2 c unsalted butter, melted

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Unroll pie crust in ungreased 9-inch pie plate; press firmly against side and bottom. Fold over excess dough along edges, and pinch to seal; flute edges or press down with fork. Place sheet of cooking parchment paper on top of pie crust; fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake crust 5 minutes, then remove parchment paper and beans. Bake another 2-3 minutes or until crust is just set and golden brown. Set aside to cool slightly. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. Meanwhile, in large bowl, stir granulated sugar, cornmeal, flour, salt, melted butter, milk, vinegar and vanilla until well combined. In small bowl, beat eggs slightly, then add to sugar mixture; stir until well combined. Pour filling into pie crust. Bake 50-60 minutes or until filling is set and top of pie is deep golden brown. If crust edges brown too quickly during baking, cover edges with foil. Cool pie about 1 hour or until completely cooled on cooling rack before cutting. Sprinkle with powdered sugar just before serving.

Apple Pear Cranberry Pie

1 refrigerated pie crust

1/2 c sweetened dried cranberries

3/4 c sugar

TOPPING:

2 Tbs cornstarch

1/2 c all-purpose flour

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 c packed brown sugar

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 c cold butter

3 c thinly sliced, peeled tart apples

1/2 c coarsely chopped walnuts

3 c thinly sliced, peeled ripe pears

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Place pie crust in 9-inch glass pie plate as directed on box for single crust. In large bowl, mix sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and nutmeg. Gently stir in apples, pears and dried cranberries. Pour filling into crust-lined pie plate. In small bowl, mix topping ingredients until crumbly; sprinkle over filling. Line 15x10-inch pan with foil; place on oven rack below the rack pie will be baked on to catch any spillover. Loosely cover pie with sheet of foil; bake 1 hour. Uncover; bake 10 minutes longer or until apples are tender and topping is golden brown.

April 1, 2017

Cowboy Casserole

1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef

2/3 c milk

1 (16 oz) can baked beans

1 Tbs butter or margarine, softened

1/2 c barbecue sauce

1/2 c shredded Cheddar cheese (2 oz)

2 c biscuit mix

Heat oven to 425 degrees. In 10-inch skillet, cook beef over medium-high heat 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly cooked; drain. Stir baked beans and barbecue sauce into beef. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Pour into ungreased 2-quart casserole. Meanwhile, in medium bowl, stir biscuit mix, milk and butter until soft dough forms. Drop dough by spoonful's onto beef mixture. Bake uncovered 18-22 minutes or until topping is golden brown. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake about 3 minutes longer or until cheese is melted

Million Dollar Spaghetti Hot Dish

1 lb uncooked spaghetti

1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened

4 eggs

1 lb ground beef

1/4 c fresh parsley, chopped

1 (25.5 oz) jar tomato basil pasta sauce

1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 c heavy whipping cream

1/2 c butter, cut into chunks

8 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded or sliced

1 (8 oz) container cottage cheese

basil, if desired

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 13x9-inch baking dish. Cook spaghetti to al-dente as directed on package. Meanwhile, in medium bowl, beat eggs, parsley and Parmesan cheese with whisk. Drain spaghetti, and add it right back to the hot pot. Add the butter and the egg mixture to the spaghetti, and quickly toss until evenly coated and the eggs have formed a sauce. Add mixture to baking dish. Add cottage cheese and cream cheese to the pot you tossed the spaghetti in, and mix until combined. Pour the cheese mixture directly over the spaghetti mixture, spreading it out in an even layer. Heat 10-inch skillet (or the pot spaghetti cooked in) over medium heat, and brown the beef, 5-8 minutes; drain. Remove from heat, and stir in the pasta sauce and cream. Spread mixture over cheese layer. Then add the mozzarella cheese in an even layer over top. Place baking dish on large cookie sheet. Bake 30-45 minutes or until the cheese is melted and lightly browned on top. Cool 5 minutes before serving. Serve with fresh mozzarella and basil, if desired

Grandma's Quick Chicken Hot Dish

3 c cooked chicken, chopped

3 c panko crispy bread crumbs or dry stuffing mix

2 (10.75 oz) cans cream of chicken soup

6 Tbs butter, melted

2 c shredded Cheddar cheese

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place chicken in bottom of ungreased 13x9-inch baking dish. Spoon soup evenly over chicken and top with shredded cheese. In medium bowl stir together melted butter and breadcrumbs. Sprinkle over baking dish. Bake 35-40 minutes or until bubbly.

Simple Hamburger Hot Dish**

3 c uncooked rotini pasta (8 oz)

1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained

1 lb lean ground beef

1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce

1 large onion, chopped

1 Tbs sugar

1 tsp garlic powder

1 c shredded American-Cheddar cheese blend

1/2 tsp salt

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cook and drain pasta as directed on package. Meanwhile, in 10-inch skillet, cook beef, onion, garlic powder and salt over medium heat 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beef is thoroughly cooked; drain. Stir in tomatoes, tomato sauce, sugar and pasta. Pour into ungreased 8-inch square glass baking dish. Cover dish with foil. Bake 30-40 minutes or until bubbly around edges. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake uncovered 5-10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.

                           

March 25, 2017

Coca Cola Cake

1 c Coca Cola

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 c buttermilk

1 1/2 c miniature marshmallows

1 c butter or margarine, softened

FROSTING:

1 3/4 c sugar

1/2 c butter or margarine

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1/3 c Coca Cola

2 tsp vanilla extract

3 Tbs cocoa

2 c all-purpose flour

1 (16 oz) pkg powdered sugar

1/4 c cocoa

1 Tbs vanilla extract

Combine Coca-Cola and buttermilk; set aside. Beat butter at low speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar; beat until blended. Add egg and vanilla; beat at low speed until blended. Combine flour, cocoa, and soda. Add to butter mixture alternately with cola mixture; begin and end with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended. Stir in marshmallows. Pour batter into a greased and floured 13x9 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Remove from oven; cool 10 minutes. Mix together frosting ingredients and pour over warm cake; garnish, if desired. Note: Don't make the frosting ahead-you need to pour it over the cake shortly after baking.

Black Bottom Vanilla Cream Pie**

3/4 c sugar

2 oz semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

3 Tbs cornstarch

1 c heavy cream

1/4 tsp salt

1 Tbs powdered sugar

2 1/2 c milk

CRUMB CRUST:

1 large egg

3/4 c flaked coconut, toasted

2 large egg yolks

18 gingersnap cookies, crumbled

2 Tbs unsalted butter

3 Tbs unsalted butter, melted

2 tsp vanilla extract

CRUST: Stir together crust ingredients. Press into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch pie-plate. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. FILLING: Combine first 6 ingredients in a medium saucepan, whisking well to blend. Bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking constantly, for about 8 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the butter and vanilla. Place chopped chocolate in a small microwavable bowl and microwave at medium power for 1 minute. Stir and repeat. Stir and cook the chocolate 30 seconds more if necessary, or until smooth. Remove 1 cup of custard from saucepan and stir into melted chocolate. Spread chocolate custard evenly in bottom of pie shell. Spoon remaining vanilla custard on top. Cover top of tart with a sheet of wax paper to prevent skin from forming. Chill vanilla cream pie at least 3 hours or overnight. To serve, whip cream and powdered sugar until stiff. Spoon or decoratively pipe whipped cream on top of pie.

Rocky Road Cookies

1 1/4 c sugar

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 c brown sugar

1/3 c miniature marshmallows

1/2 c unsalted butter, softened

3/4 square baking dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/3 c chopped toasted pecans

1 large egg

parchment paper

1 3/4 c all-purpose flour

1 square baking dark chocolate, chopped

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp canola oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine sugar, brown sugar, butter, and vanilla in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until fluffy. Add egg; beat just until blended. Beat in flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir marshmallows, ¾ ounce coarsely chopped dark chocolate, and pecans into cookie dough. Drop dough by tablespoonful's 2 inches apart on parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned. Combine 1 square chopped dark chocolate and canola oil in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at HIGH 1 minute or until melted, stirring every 20 seconds. Drizzle chocolate over cooled cookies.

Cherry Pie Bars**

3 c all-purpose flour

3/4 c chopped pecans

3/4 c sugar

1 c powdered sugar

1/2 tsp salt

4-5 tsp whole milk

1 1/2 c cold butter, cubed

1/4 tsp almond extract

3 c canned cherry pie filling (about 1.5 cans)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line bottom and sides of a 13x9 inch pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil, allowing 2-3 inches to extend over sides; lightly grease foil with cooking spray. Pulse flour, granulated sugar, and salt in a food processor until combined. Add butter cubes, and pulse until mixture is crumbly. Reserve 1 cup flour mixture. Press remaining flour mixture onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven until lightly browned, 25-30 minutes. Spread cherry pie filling over crust in pan. Toss together reserved 1 cup flour mixture and pecans. Sprinkle pecan mixture evenly over filling. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, 40-45 minutes. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack, about 1 hour. Lift baked bars from pan, using foil sides as handles. Stir together powdered sugar, 4 teaspoons milk, and almond extract. Add additional milk, if needed, to reach desired consistency. Drizzle over pecan mixture. Cut into 48 bars.

March 18, 2017

Chicken Mushroom Pot Pie

cooking spray

1 Tbs chopped fresh thyme

2 Tbs olive oil, divided

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 1/2 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast

1 c finely chopped carrot

halves, cut into 1-inch pieces

8 oz green beans, trimmed and cut in 1-in pcs

1/2 tsp kosher salt, divided

2 c unsalted chicken stock

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided

1/4 c all-purpose flour

12 oz assorted mushrooms, such as shitake

1 c frozen green peas

and button, sliced

2 Tbs chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1 c thinly sliced onion

1/2 (14.1 oz) pkg refrigerated pie dough

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Coat an 8-cup baking dish with cooking spray. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Sprinkle chicken with ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Add half of chicken to pan; cook 3 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove chicken from pan. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken. Add remaining oil to pan. Add mushrooms, onion, thyme, garlic, remaining salt and pepper to pan; cook 12 minutes or until mushrooms are browned, stirring occasionally. Add carrot and green beans; cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Combine stock and flour in a bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add stock mixture to pan; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cook 3 minutes or until slightly thickened. Stir in chicken, peas, and parsley. Spoon chicken mixture into prepared pan. Roll dough to an oval large enough to cover the baking dish. Lay dough over filling. Fold edges under, and crimp, if desired. Bake at 25 minutes or until browned and bubbly.

Turkey Pot Pie w/Cranberry Pecan Crust**

3 Tbs butter, divided

1 1/2 c chicken broth

2 large sweet onions, diced

1 c milk

1/2 c all-purpose flour

1 (10 oz) pkg fresh spinach, torn

1 tsp salt

CRUST:

1 tsp pepper

1 (15 oz) pkg refrigerated pie crust

4 (12 oz) turkey tenderloins, cut in 1 1/2 in cubes

1/2 c finely chopped pecans, toasted

2 Tbs vegetable oil

1/2 c finely chopped and dried cranberries

CRUST: Unfold each piecrust, and press out fold lines. Sprinkle one piecrust with pecans and cranberries; top with remaining piecrust. Roll into a 14-inch circle, sealing together piecrusts. Cut into desired shapes with a 2- to 3-inch cutter. Place pastry shapes on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake at 425 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until golden. FILLING: Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat; add onions, and saute 15 minutes or until caramel colored. Place onions in a bowl, and set aside. Combine flour, salt, and pepper; dredge turkey tenderloins in flour mixture. Melt remaining butter with oil in skillet over medium-high heat; add turkey tenderloins, and brown on all sides. Gradually stir in chicken broth and milk. Bring to a boil, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute or until thickened. Stir in onions. Add spinach, stirring just until wilted. Pour turkey mixture into a lightly greased 13x9-inch baking dish. Bake, covered, at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, and arrange desired amount of crusts over pie before serving and serve with any remaining crust pieces on the side.

Beef Pot Pie

1 large onion, chopped

2 Tbs sherry

3 Tbs butter or margarine

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

2 c cooked, cubed roast beef

1/2 tsp salt

1 Tbs all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp pepper

1 c beef broth

1/8 tsp dried whole thyme

1 c diced, cooked potatoes

pastry for 9 inch pie

1 c cooked green peas and carrots

1 egg, beaten

Sauté onion in butter until tender. Add meat; cook 5 minutes. Sprinkle flour over meat, stirring constantly. Gradually add broth; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickened. Stir in next 8 ingredients. Spoon mixture into a 9-inch pie plate. Roll pastry to 1/8-inch thickness on a lightly floured surface. Carefully place pastry over beef mixture. Turn pastry edges under, and press firmly to rim of pie plate to seal; flute edges. Cut slits in top to allow steam to escape. Decorate with pastry cutouts, if desired. Brush top with beaten egg. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until golden brown.

2 Tbs chopped fresh parsley

Barbeque Pork Shepherd's Pie**

1 large sweet onion

1 lb shredded barbecue pork

1 Tbs vegetable oil

CRUST:

2 Tbs all-purpose flour

1 (22 oz) pkg frozen mashed potatoes

1 1/2 c thick barbecue sauce

1/2 (8 oz) pkg softened cream cheese

1 1/2 c beef broth

1 c shredded Cheddar cheese

Prepare frozen mashed potatoes according to package directions. Stir in softened cream cheese until melted. FILLING: Sauté onion in hot oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat 5 minutes or until golden brown. Stir in flour, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Gradually stir in barbecue sauce and beef broth; cook, stirring constantly, 3 minutes or until mixture begins to thicken. Stir in pork, and bring to a boil. Remove from heat, and spoon mixture into a lightly greased 13x9-inch baking dish. Spoon crust evenly over hot barbecue mixture. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes.

March 11, 2017

Ham and Bean Soup

1 (16 oz) pkg dried Great Northern beans

2 Tbs olive oil

3 c chopped cooked ham

1 ham bone

1 large sweet onion, diced

2 (32 oz) containers chicken broth

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 tsp dried crushed red pepper

Sort and wash beans. Place beans in a 6-quart Dutch oven; add water 2 inches above beans, and soak 8 hours. Drain. Sauté ham, onion, and garlic in hot oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Add beans, ham bone, chicken broth, and red pepper. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 1 1/2 hours or until beans are tender and soup has thickened.

Croquet Monsieur (ala Monte Cristo)**

4 thick slices French bread

1/2 c fat-free milk

4 tsp honey mustard

3 large egg whites

6 oz reduced-fat deli ham, thinly sliced

cooking spray

4 (1 oz) slices reduced-fat Swiss cheese

Cut a slit in each bread slice to form a pocket. Spread 1 teaspoon honey mustard into each bread pocket. Divide ham and cheese evenly among bread pockets. Combine milk and egg whites in a shallow bowl, stirring with a whisk. Dip sandwiches, one at a time, in milk mixture, turning to coat. Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add two sandwiches; cook 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Repeat procedure with remaining sandwiches.

Scalloped Potatoes and Ham

2 Tbs onion, chopped

1/8 tsp pepper

1/4 c butter

1 1/2 c milk

1/4 c all-purpose flour

2 c shredded Cheddar cheese, divided

1/2 tsp dry mustard

6 c potatoes, peeled, cooked and sliced

1 tsp salt

1/2 lb cooked ham, cubed

In a skillet over medium heat, sauté onion in butter; blend in flour, mustard, salt and pepper. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly until thickened; mix in 1 1/2 cups cheese and stir until melted. Remove from heat; add potatoes and toss to coat. Spoon into a greased 13x9 inch baking pan; arrange ham and remaining cheese on top. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, until hot and bubbly.

Sweet Potato Biscuits and Ham**

5 c self-rising flour

2 c buttermilk

1 Tbs sugar

1 c cooked mashed sweet potatoes

1 tsp kosher salt

parchment paper

1 c cold butter, cut into small cubes

2 Tbs butter, melted

1/4 c cold vegetable shortening

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Stir together first three ingredients in a large bowl. Cut butter cubes and shortening into flour mixture with pastry blender or fork just until mixture resembles coarse meal. Cover and chill 10 minutes. Whisk together buttermilk and sweet potato. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Turn dough out onto a well floured surface, and knead lightly 3-4 times. Pat or roll dough to 3/4-inch thickness; cut with a 2-inch round cutter, reshaping scraps once. Place rounds on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown. Remove from oven, and brush tops of biscuits with melted butter. Serve immediately.

March 4, 2017

Skillet Chicken Pot Pie Pizza

4 tsp olive oil, divided

10 oz refrigerated whole-wheat pizza dough

1/4 c prechopped onion

3/4 c shredded skinless rotisserie chicken breast

1/4 c matchstick-cut carrot

3/4 c shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

1/4 c prechopped celery

1 tsp thyme leaves

1/4 c frozen green peas

1/4 tsp black pepper

1 1/2 Tbs all-purpose flour

1/8 tsp kosher salt

1 c unsalted chicken stock

Place a 12-inch cast-iron skillet in oven, and preheat oven to 500 degrees. Do not remove skillet while oven preheats. Heat 1 teaspoon of oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high. Add onion; sauté 2 minutes. Add carrot, celery, and peas; sauté 1 minute. Remove mixture from skillet; set aside. Add flour and 1 tablespoon oil to nonstick skillet. Cook 30 seconds, whisking constantly. Slowly add stock, stirring constantly. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, until mixture is thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Place dough on a lightly floured surface; roll out to a 12-inch circle. Carefully place dough in preheated cast-iron skillet; flatten to cover bottom of pan. Bake in preheated oven until crust is lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Remove from oven; increase heat to broil. Top pizza crust with 1/2 cup stock mixture. Sprinkle with onion mixture, chicken, and cheese. Broil until cheese is melted, about 2 minutes. Drizzle with remaining stock mixture. Sprinkle with thyme, pepper, and salt.

Korean Chicken Lettuce Wraps

2 1/2 Tbs lower-sodium soy sauce, divided

1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

2 Tbs dark brown sugar

1 c uncooked long-grain brown rice

1 1/2 Tbs dark sesame oil

2 tsp canola oil

1 Tbs gochujang sauce (i.e. Annie Chun's)

1 tsp toasted sesame seeds

1 Tbs minced fresh garlic

12 Bibb lettuce leaves

1/4 tsp black pepper

24 cucumber slices

Combine first six ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag. Place 2 tablespoons soy sauce mixture in a small bowl; set aside. Thinly slice chicken. Add chicken slices to remaining soy sauce mixture in bag; seal. Refrigerate 2 hours. Cook rice according to package directions. Remove chicken from bag; discard marinade. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add chicken; cook 2 minutes on each side or until done. Sprinkle sesame seeds over chicken. Place 3 tablespoons rice in each lettuce leaf; top each lettuce leaf with 1/3 cup chicken mixture, 2 cucumber slices, and about 1 ½ teaspoons green onions. Serve with reserved 2 tablespoons soy sauce mixture.

Mexican Chicken Stew

3 lb chicken pieces, skinned

1 can golden or white hominy, drained

2 c thinly sliced onion

2 Tbs ground chile powder

3/4 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper

1/2 c roasted unsalted pumpkin seed kernels

3 c fat-free low-sodium chicken broth

1/4 c chopped fresh cilantro

4 garlic cloves, crushed

1/4 c sliced radishes

3 bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1/4 c sliced scallions

1 bay leaf

1/2 c crumbled queso fresco cheese

Combine first eight ingredients (first column) in a 6-quart pressure cooker pot. Close and lock the lid. Turn the steam release handle to "Sealing" position. When the rocker begins to move, time 23 minutes pressure cooking time. When time is up, remove from the heat and when appropriate, open the cooker carefully. Remove chicken from broth mixture; cool slightly. Remove chicken from bones; cut chicken into bite-sized pieces. Discard bones. Strain stock through a sieve over a bowl; discard solids. Return inner pot to cooker; return stock to inner pot. Stir in chicken, hominy, chile powder, and oregano. Let stand 5 minutes. Skim fat from surface of broth; discard. Ladle stew into 8 bowls; top each serving evenly with pumpkinseed kernels, cilantro, radishes, scallions, and queso fresco cheese.

Braised Chicken Thighs w/Carrots, Lemon**

8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed (3 lb)

2 1/2 Tbs all-purpose flour

2 tsp paprika

2 c chicken broth

1 tsp kosher salt, divided

4 thyme sprigs

1 tsp black pepper, divided

1 lemon, sliced

2 Tbs salted butter

3 c hot cooked mashed potatoes (optional)

1 lb large carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/2 inch long pieces

Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Sprinkle chicken with paprika and 3/4 teaspoon each of the salt and pepper. Melt butter in a large enamel-coated cast-iron skillet with lid over medium-high. Place half of chicken, skin side down, in skillet; cook until skin is golden brown, about 6 minutes. Remove chicken from skillet; repeat process with remaining chicken. Add carrots to pan, and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 7 minutes. Add flour to skillet; cook, stirring often, 1 minute. Add broth, thyme, and remaining salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Place chicken, skin side up, on carrots. Partially cover with lid; reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until chicken is done, about 20 minutes. Remove thyme sprigs. Stir in lemons, and, if desired, serve over mashed potatoes.

 

Kitchen Medley Recipes

February 25, 2017

Spicy Chicken w/Basil

2 Tbs chili oil

1 tsp garlic salt

2 cloves garlic

1 tsp black pepper

3 hot chile peppers

5 Tbs oyster sauce

1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast halves,

1 c fresh mushrooms

cut into bite-size pieces

1 c chopped onions

1 1/2 tsp white sugar

1 bunch fresh basil leaves

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, and cook the garlic and chile peppers until golden brown. Mix in chicken and sugar, and season with garlic salt and pepper. Cook until chicken is no longer pink, but not yet done. Stir oyster sauce into the skillet. Mix in mushrooms and onions, and continue cooking until onions are tender and chicken juices are clear. Remove from heat, and mix in basil. Let sit 5 minutes before serving.

 

Spicy Ham Quiche*

1 1/2 tsp olive oil

1 1/2 c shredded pepper jack cheese (6 oz)

1 c chopped cooked ham

1 c milk

1/2 bag (16 oz size) frozen chopped collard

2 eggs

greens, thawed and drained

1/2 c biscuit mix

1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 c)

1/4 tsp salt

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray 9-inch glass pie plate with cooking spray. In 10-inch skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Cook ham in oil 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until browned. Stir in greens and onion. Cook 5 minutes longer until onion is tender and liquid is evaporated. Spoon half of the mixture into pie plate. Sprinkle with 3/4 cup of the cheese. Repeat layers. In medium bowl, stir milk, eggs, Biscuit mix and salt with fork or whisk until smooth. Pour over greens and cheese. Bake 25-35 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

 

Spicy Mongolian Beef

1/4 c soy sauce

1 Tbs red pepper flakes, optional

1 Tbs hoisin sauce

1 lb beef flank steak, thinly sliced

1 Tbs sesame oil

1 Tbs peanut oil

2 tsp white sugar

2 large green onions, thinly sliced

1 Tbs minced garlic

noodles or rice

Whisk together soy sauce, hoisin sauce, sesame oil, sugar, garlic, and red pepper flakes in a bowl. Toss beef with marinade, cover, and refrigerate one hour to overnight. Heat peanut oil in a wok or large, nonstick skillet over high heat. Add the green onions, and cook for 5-10 seconds before stirring in the beef. Cook and stir until the beef is no longer pink and is beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Serve over noodles or rice.

 

Spicy Corn Fritters*

vegetable oil for deep frying

1 can (15.25 oz) whole kernel corn, drained

2 cups biscuit mix

1 can (4.5 oz) chopped green chilies, well drained

1/2 c cold water

thick and chunky salsa

1 egg

In deep fat fryer or heavy saucepan, heat 2-3 inches of oil to 375 degrees. In medium bowl, stir biscuit mix, cold water and egg until blended. Stir in corn and chiles. Drop about 5 to 6 small spoonful's of batter into hot oil; fry 2-3 minutes, turning as necessary, until well browned. With slotted spoon, remove fritters from oil; drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining fritters. Serve warm with salsa.

 

 

 

February 18, 2017

Spinach and Rice Casserole

2 tsp olive oil

1 can 98% fat-free cream of mushroom soup

3 medium carrots, chopped (1 1/2 c)

1 1/2 c uncooked instant brown rice

2/3 c chopped celery

1 tsp Italian seasoning

1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 c)

1/2 tsp pepper

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 c diced cooked ham

1 3/4 c water

3/4 c shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese (3 oz)

2 boxes (9 oz ea) frozen chopped spinach,

1/4 c grated Parmesan cheese

thawed and drained

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 13x9-inch glass baking dish with cooking spray. In 3-quart saucepan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add carrots, celery, onion and garlic; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add water and soup; heat to boiling. Add spinach, rice, Italian seasoning and pepper; return to boiling. Remove from heat; stir in ham, 1/4 cup of the cheddar cheese and the Parmesan cheese. Spread in baking dish. Cover with foil. Bake 30-35 minutes or until bubbly. Sprinkle with remaining cheddar cheese. Let stand uncovered 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Roasted Pork Tenderloin w/Sweet Pot, Pears*

1 pork tenderloin (1-1 1/4 lbs)

1/4 tsp coarse ground black pepper

2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary leaves

2 firm ripe small pears, unpeeled, cut into 6 wedges

1/2 tsp salt

1 medium sweet onion, halved crosswise, cut

1/2 tsp dried sage leaves, crushed

into thin wedges

1 large dark-orange sweet potato (l lb) peeled,

1 Tbs olive oil

cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces

fresh sage leaves, if desired

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Spray 15x10x1-inch pan with cooking spray. Place pork tenderloin in pan. In small bowl, mix rosemary, salt, sage and pepper. Rub half of seasoning mixture on pork. In medium bowl, toss sweet potato, pears and onion with oil until coated. Sprinkle with remaining seasoning mixture; toss. Place vegetables around pork. Bake 25-30 minutes, stirring vegetables and pears gently once or twice during baking, until pork has slight blush of pink in center and meat thermometer inserted in center reads 145 degrees, and vegetables are tender. Remove from oven; cover with foil and let stand 3 minutes before slicing. Cut pork into ½ -inch slices. Serve with vegetables. Garnish with fresh sage leaves.

Slow Cooker Tex-Mex Sloppy Joes

1 can (16 oz) spicy chili beans in sauce, undrained

1/4 c ketchup

1 lb extra lean (at least 95%) ground beef

1 tsp chili powder

1 c chopped green pepper

1/4 tsp pepper

1 c chopped red bell pepper

2 tsp fresh lime juice

1 c chopped onion

8 whole wheat burger buns

1 jalapeno chile, seeded, diced

Spray 3 1/2 - 4 quart slow cooker with cooking spray; set aside. Pour chili beans into medium bowl. With potato masher or fork, mash about half of the beans; set aside. In 12-inch skillet, cook beef, green and red bell peppers, onion and jalapeño chile over medium heat 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beef is brown; drain. Pour beef mixture into slow cooker. Add beans, ketchup, chili powder and pepper. Stir to thoroughly combine. Cover; cook on Low heat setting 2 ½ to 3 hours or until heated through. Stir in lime juice. Divide beef mixture among buns (about 1/2 cup each). Serve immediately.

 

Sesame Shrimp and Apple Salad*

8 uncooked large shrimp, peeled, deveined

1 tsp honey

wooden skewers

1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil

cooking spray

1/2 tsp reduced-sodium soy sauce

1/4 tsp salt

3 c baby lettuce leaves

freshly ground black pepper

1 granny smith apple, cut into thin matchsticks

2 tsp cider vinegar

1/2 red bell pepper, cut into thin matchsticks

1 tsp olive oil

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Line cookie sheet with cooking parchment paper or foil. Thread shrimp onto skewers, 2-4 per skewer. Spray shrimp evenly with cooking spray. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake 5-8 minutes or until shrimp are pink. Meanwhile, in small bowl, beat vinegar, olive oil, honey, sesame oil and soy sauce with whisk until well blended. In large bowl, toss lettuce, apple and bell pepper with dressing. Divide salad evenly between two serving plates. Top each with shrimp.

February 11, 2017

Chicken Broccoli Cheddar Mac

16 oz fusilli pasta, uncooked

8 oz extra sharp white cheddar cheese, grated

4 Tbs olive oil

8 oz white American cheese slices, in small pieces

4 chicken breasts, cubed and seasoned with salt

4 oz mozzarella cheese, grated

and pepper

8 oz cream cheese, softened and diced

1/2 tsp ground dry mustard

2 Tbs flour

1 tsp white pepper

2 Tbs butter

2 c whole milk

4 c steamed broccoli florets

Cook cubed chicken in a medium skillet with olive oil until crispy and completely cooked. Steam broccoli and set aside. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 10 minutes. Drain and set aside. In the same pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour. Whisk flour and butter together for 1-2 minutes. Pour in milk and whisk until smooth. Add in dry mustard and white pepper. Heat milk until hot and then add in cream cheese. Stir until melted and smooth. Add in all grated cheese and blend until melted. Mix in the chicken and broccoli. Pour pasta into cheese sauce and mix well. Stir well and heat for 2-3 minutes.

Loaded Potato Soup*

1 pkg (12 oz) bacon

1 tsp salt

1 1/2 c chopped onion

1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

6 c chicken broth (two 32 oz cartons)

1 c diced cooked ham

2 lb baking potatoes, peeled, cubed

1 container (8 oz) sour cream

2/3 c butter

2 1/2 c shredded sharp cheddar cheese (10 oz)

3/4 c all-purpose flour

3/4 c sliced green onions

4 c milk

In a medium skillet, cook bacon over medium heat 6-7 minutes or until crisp; drain on paper towels. Crumble bacon; set aside. Reserve 2 tablespoons drippings in skillet. Cook onion in bacon until almost tender. In a 6-quart Dutch oven, mix onion, broth and potatoes. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cook 10 minutes or until potatoes are very tender. Meanwhile, in same skillet, melt butter over low heat. Stir in flour with whisk until smooth. Cook and stir 1 minute. Gradually stir in 2 cups of the milk. Pour milk mixture into potato mixture. Add remaining 2 cups milk, the salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with whisk, until mixture is thickened and bubbly. Stir in ham, half of the bacon, the sour cream, 2 cups of the cheese and 1/2 cup of the green onions. Cook until thoroughly heated and cheese is melted. Evenly top individual servings with the remaining bacon, 1/2 cup cheese and 1/4 cup green onions.

Sausage and Red Bean Skillet w/Biscuits

1 Tbs butter

1 can (14.5 oz) fire roasted diced tomatoes

1 lb bulk pork sausage

1 box (6.5 oz) cornbread muffin mix

1 c chopped yellow onion

1 c shredded sharp cheddar cheese (4 oz)

1/2 c chopped celery

2 Tbs milk

1/2 c chopped green bell pepper

1 Tbs sriracha sauce

1 tsp Cajun seasoning

1 egg

1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper

2 green onions, thinly sliced

1 can (19 oz) dark red kidney beans, drained, rinsed

Heat oven to 400 degrees. In medium ovenproof skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Cook sausage, onion, celery, bell pepper, Cajun seasoning and red pepper in butter 8 -10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sausage is no longer pink and vegetables are softened. Stir in beans and tomatoes. Heat to boiling, stirring frequently; remove from heat. Meanwhile, in medium bowl, mix cornbread muffin mix, cheese, milk, Sriracha sauce and egg. Spoon tablespoonful’s over sausage mixture. Bake 12-15 minutes or until cornbread biscuits are cooked through and browned on top. Top with green onions.

Smothered Chicken Casserole*

1 Tbs oil

1 can (10 3/4 oz) cream of chicken soup

4 boneless skinless chicken thighs

1 1/4 c half-and-half

1/2 tsp garlic salt

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

1/4 tsp pepper

2 c frozen broccoli florets, cut into smaller pieces

6 oz uncooked angel hair pasta

3 slices precooked bacon, crumbled

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 2 1/2 -quart casserole with cooking spray. In 10-inch skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken thighs; sprinkle with garlic salt and pepper. Cook chicken 8-10 minutes, turning once, until golden brown and juice of chicken is clear, and when thickest part is no longer pink. Cook pasta as directed on package; drain. In large bowl, mix soup, half-and-half and paprika; reserve 3/4 cup sauce. Stir in cooked pasta and frozen broccoli. Place pasta mixture in casserole; top with chicken thighs. Spoon reserved sauce over chicken thighs. Top with bacon. Cover and bake 20 minutes; uncover and bake 10-15 minutes or until sauce bubbles.

February 4, 2017

Stuffed Baby Portabella Mushrooms

2 pkg (5oz ea) fresh baby portabella mushrooms

BOURSIN CHEESE SAUCE:

or large regular white mushrooms

1 garlic clove, crushed

2 Tbs butter or margarine

2 1/2 oz butter, softened

3/4 c finely chopped red onion

6 oz cream cheese, softened

1 c frozen chopped broccoli, thawed, drained, minced

1 Tbs grated fresh Parmesan cheese

1/4 c garlic and herb bread crumbs

1 tsp fresh dill minced or 1/4 tsp dried

1 c Boursin cheese (see right)

1/8 tsp dried marjoram

1/2 tsp dried basil leaves

1/8 tsp dried basil

1/2 tsp dried oregano leaves

1/4 tsp chives, minced

1/2 tsp garlic salt

dash black pepper

1/2 tsp pepper

1/8 tsp dried thyme

1 Tbs chopped roasted red bell peppers (from a jar)

2 tsp minced fresh parsley

BOURSIN CHEESE SAUCE: First, mix the cheeses, butter and garlic, then add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Pack into tight container and chill until ready for inclusion in mushrooms. STUFFED MUSHROOMS: Heat oven to 350 degrees. Carefully remove stems from mushrooms. Chop enough stems for 1/2 cup. In a 10-inch skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Cook onion and broccoli in butter 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in mushroom stems. Cook about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until broccoli is crisp-tender. Cool slightly. Stir in bread crumbs, boursin cheese sauce, basil, oregano, garlic salt and pepper. Spoon vegetable mixture evenly into mushroom caps, mounding slightly. Place stuffed mushrooms in an ungreased 15x10x1-inch pan. Garnish each with bell pepper pieces. Bake uncovered 12-15 minutes or until filling is light golden brown.

Spicy Spinach Artichoke Dip

1 box (9 oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and

1/4 c chili garlic sauce

drained

12 c sour cream

2 slices bacon, chopped

1 can or jar (14 oz) artichoke hearts, drained and

2 c thinly sliced sweet onions

coarsely chopped

1 serrano chile, seeded, finely chopped (1 Tbs)

1/3 c shredded parmesan cheese

1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

crackers, crostini or vegetables, as desired

Heat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9-inch pie plate with cooking spray. Cook spinach as directed on box. Drain well; squeeze with paper towel to get out as much liquid as possible; set aside. Spray a 10-inch skillet with cooking spray. Place bacon in skillet; cook over medium heat until crispy. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towel-lined plate; set aside. Add onions and serrano chile to bacon drippings in pan; cook 7-9 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are caramelized. Meanwhile, in large bowl, mix cream cheese, chili garlic sauce and sour cream; stir in spinach and artichokes. Stir onion mixture into spinach mixture. Pour into pie plate. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake 20-25 minutes or until hot in center. Top with reserved bacon; serve with crackers, crostini or vegetables.

Slow Cooker Candied Spiced Nuts

1 1/2 c granulated sugar

3 tsp vanilla

1/2 c packed light brown sugar

2 c almonds

1 1/2 Tbs ground cinnamon

2 c cashews

2 egg whites

2 c pecans

Spray a 4-5-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. In large bowl, stir together sugars and cinnamon. Set aside. In small bowl, beat egg whites and vanilla until a little frothy. Place nuts in slow cooker. Pour egg white mixture over nuts, and stir until nuts are evenly coated. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar over nuts, and stir until nuts are all coated well. Cover; cook on Low heat setting 3 hours, stirring every 20 minutes. When 20 minutes are left, pour 1/4 cup water into slow cooker, and stir. When cooking time is up, spread nuts on cookie sheet to cool until dry.

Fully Loaded Deviled Eggs*

12 eggs

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp vegetable oil

1/2 pinch onion powder

1 small onion, chopped

1/8 tsp lemon pepper seasoning

1/4 c sour cream

1 Tbs bacon bits, or to taste

2 Tbs mayonnaise

1 c finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1 Tbs ranch dressing, or to taste

1/4 tsp paprika, or as needed

1 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard

Place eggs into a large pot and just cover with lightly salted water. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to medium; boil eggs for 10-12 minutes. Drain the boiling water and place under running cold water. Continue until eggs are fully chilled, 10-15 minutes. Peel eggs. Heat vegetable oil in a small skillet over medium heat and cook and stir onion until translucent, about 5 minutes. Slice eggs in half lengthwise and scoop yolks into a bowl; transfer egg white halves to a plate. Mash egg yolks with a fork; stir in sour cream, mayonnaise, ranch dressing, Dijon mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, and lemon pepper seasoning until yolk mixture is smooth. Stir in bacon bits and cheddar cheese. Generously fill egg halves with filling and sprinkle each deviled egg with paprika. Refrigerate until chilled before serving.

January 28, 2017

Beef Burrito Skillet

(28 Jan 17)

1 lb lean ground beef

4 flour tortillas (6 in) cut into 1 1/2 in pieces

1 pkg (1 oz) taco seasoning mix

1 c Mexican style shredded four cheese

1 can (15.5 oz) red kidney beans, rinsed

1/3 c sour cream

1 c thick and chunky salsa

1 large green onion, chopped

1 c water

In a large skillet, brown the beef on medium-high heat, drain. Add the seasoning mix, beans, salsa and water and stir, bringing to a boil and simmer on medium-low for 5 minutes. Stir in the tortilla pieces, and top with the cheese. Remove from the heat and cover, letting it stand for 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Top with sour cream and green onion.

Easy Cheesy Barbequed Sloppy Joes

(28 Jan 17*)

1 lb lean ground beef

3/4 c barbeque sauce

1 green pepper, chopped

4 hamburger buns

1/4 c onion, chopped

4 slices American cheese

Brown meat in a large skillet, drain. Add the green pepper and onions, cook and stir until tender-crisp, about 5 minutes. Stir in barbeque sauce, cook 5 minutes or until heated through, stirring occasionally. Fill buns with the mixture and top with a slice of cheese on each.

Best Ever Meatballs

(28 Jan 17)

2 lbs ground beef

1 1/4 c water

1 pkg (6 oz) stuffing mix for chicken

2 eggs

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Line two 15x10 inch pans with aluminum foil, and spray with cooking spray. Mix the ingredients until just blended; and shape into 32 1/2 inch balls, using a quarter cup for each. Place in the prepared pans, and bake 16-18 minutes or until done. Serve with your favorite sauce and pair with your preferred noodles or pasta.

Maple Bacon Beer Burger

(28 Jan 17*)

1 lb ground beef

4 slices cheddar cheese

1/4 c beer

4 slices extra thick Maplewood bacon, cut in

2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

half and cooked crisp

4 whole wheat hamburger buns, split

Combine ground beef and Worcestershire sauce in a medium bowl, mixing thoroughly. Shape into four 1/2 inch thick patties. Grill or cook on the stove top at medium heat, covered 8-10 minutes. About 2 minutes before burgers are done, place buns, cut side down on the heating surface, toast. Then add cheese, and melt. Place burgers on the buns, add the crisp bacon slices and close sandwiches.

January 21, 2017

Potato Crunchy Tenders

(21 Jan 17)

1/2 c vegetable oil, for frying

2 tsp salt

1 1/2 c milk

2 tsp ground black pepper

1 egg

1 1/2 lbs chicken tenders

1 pkg (7.6 oz) garlic flavored mashed potatoes

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. While the oil is heating, beat the milk and egg together in a bowl. In another bowl, stir together the instant mashed potatoes, salt and pepper. Stir the chicken tenders with the milk mixture to coat thoroughly, then shake off excess milk and dip each tender into the potato flakes. Place the breaded tenders into the hot oil and fry until golden brown. This should take 7-10 minutes. Remove from the oil and drain on paper towels.

Roast Sticky Chicken-Rotisserie Style

(21 Jan 17*)

4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp black pepper

1 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp dried thyme

2 onions, quartered

1 tsp white pepper

2 (4 lb) whole chickens

In a small bowl, mix together all of the seasonings. Remove and discard giblets from chicken. Rinse chicken cavity, and pat dry with a paper towel. Rub each chicken inside and out with the spice mixture. Place one onion into the cavity of each chicken. Place chickens in a resealable bag, or double wrap with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight, or at least 4-6 hours. About 5 hours before serving, preheat oven to 250 degrees. Place the chickens in a roasting pan. Bake uncovered for about 5 hours, to a minimum internal temperature of 185 degrees. Let the chickens stand for 10 minutes before carving.

Buffalo Chicken Wings

(21 Jan 17)

1/2 c all-purpose flour

HOT SAUCE MIXTURE:

1/4 tsp paprika

1/4 c butter

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/4 c hot sauce

1/4 tsp salt

1 dash ground black pepper

10 chicken wings/drummets

1 dash garlic powder

oil for frying

ranch dressing or other dipping sauce

In a small bowl mix together the flour, paprika, cayenne pepper and salt. Place chicken in a large nonporous glass dish or bowl and sprinkle flour mixture over them until they are evenly coated. Cover dish or bowl and refrigerate for 60-90 minutes. Heat oil in a deep fryer or deep skillet to medium high (375 degrees). The oil should be just enough to cover the wings entirely, an inch or so deep. Combine the butter, hot sauce, pepper and garlic powder in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir together and heat until butter is melted and mixture is well blended. Remove from heat and reserve for serving. Fry coated wings in hot oil for 10-15 minutes, or until parts of wings begin to turn brown. Remove, drain, and place them in a serving bowl, adding the hot sauce mixture and stir to coat. Serve, and present with ranch dressing or other dipping sauce.

Rice Crispy Chicken Nuggets

(21 Jan 17*)

1 egg

1/4 c olive oil

salt and ground black pepper, to taste

2 Tbs butter

2 1/2 c crispy rice cereal, crushed

APRICOT SAUCE:

1 1/4 lb skinless boneless chicken breasts, cut

1/2 c apricot preserves

into 20 pieces

2 Tbs water

Beat egg, salt and pepper together in a bowl. Pour crushed cereal into a separate bowl. Coat chicken pieces in the egg mixture. Press chicken pieces into cereal until coated. Heat oil and butter together in a skillet over medium heat; cook and stir chicken until coating is golden brown and meat is no longer pink in the center, about 7 minutes. Whisk preserves and water together in a saucepan over medium-low heat until heated through and smooth, 2-3 minutes. Serve apricot sauce with the chicken nuggets.

January 28, 2017

Beef Burrito Skillet

(28 Jan 17)

1 lb lean ground beef

4 flour tortillas (6 in) cut into 1 1/2 in pieces

1 pkg (1 oz) taco seasoning mix

1 c Mexican style shredded four cheese

1 can (15.5 oz) red kidney beans, rinsed

1/3 c sour cream

1 c thick and chunky salsa

1 large green onion, chopped

1 c water

In a large skillet, brown the beef on medium-high heat, drain. Add the seasoning mix, beans, salsa and water and stir, bringing to a boil and simmer on medium-low for 5 minutes. Stir in the tortilla pieces, and top with the cheese. Remove from the heat and cover, letting it stand for 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Top with sour cream and green onion.

Easy Cheesy Barbequed Sloppy Joes

(28 Jan 17*)

1 lb lean ground beef

3/4 c barbeque sauce

1 green pepper, chopped

4 hamburger buns

1/4 c onion, chopped

4 slices American cheese

Brown meat in a large skillet, drain. Add the green pepper and onions, cook and stir until tender-crisp, about 5 minutes. Stir in barbeque sauce, cook 5 minutes or until heated through, stirring occasionally. Fill buns with the mixture and top with a slice of cheese on each.

Best Ever Meatballs

(28 Jan 17)

2 lbs ground beef

1 1/4 c water

1 pkg (6 oz) stuffing mix for chicken

2 eggs

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Line two 15x10 inch pans with aluminum foil, and spray with cooking spray. Mix the ingredients until just blended; and shape into 32 1/2 inch balls, using a quarter cup for each. Place in the prepared pans, and bake 16-18 minutes or until done. Serve with your favorite sauce and pair with your preferred noodles or pasta.

Maple Bacon Beer Burger

(28 Jan 17*)

1 lb ground beef

4 slices cheddar cheese

1/4 c beer

4 slices extra thick Maplewood bacon, cut in

2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

half and cooked crisp

4 whole wheat hamburger buns, split

Combine ground beef and Worcestershire sauce in a medium bowl, mixing thoroughly. Shape into four 1/2 inch thick patties. Grill or cook on the stove top at medium heat, covered 8-10 minutes. About 2 minutes before burgers are done, place buns, cut side down on the heating surface, toast. Then add cheese, and melt. Place burgers on the buns, add the crisp bacon slices and close sandwiches.

January 21, 2017

Potato Crunchy Tenders

(21 Jan 17)

1/2 c vegetable oil, for frying

2 tsp salt

1 1/2 c milk

2 tsp ground black pepper

1 egg

1 1/2 lbs chicken tenders

1 pkg (7.6 oz) garlic flavored mashed potatoes

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. While the oil is heating, beat the milk and egg together in a bowl. In another bowl, stir together the instant mashed potatoes, salt and pepper. Stir the chicken tenders with the milk mixture to coat thoroughly, then shake off excess milk and dip each tender into the potato flakes. Place the breaded tenders into the hot oil and fry until golden brown. This should take 7-10 minutes. Remove from the oil and drain on paper towels.

Roast Sticky Chicken-Rotisserie Style

(21 Jan 17*)

4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp black pepper

1 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp dried thyme

2 onions, quartered

1 tsp white pepper

2 (4 lb) whole chickens

In a small bowl, mix together all of the seasonings. Remove and discard giblets from chicken. Rinse chicken cavity, and pat dry with a paper towel. Rub each chicken inside and out with the spice mixture. Place one onion into the cavity of each chicken. Place chickens in a resealable bag, or double wrap with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight, or at least 4-6 hours. About 5 hours before serving, preheat oven to 250 degrees. Place the chickens in a roasting pan. Bake uncovered for about 5 hours, to a minimum internal temperature of 185 degrees. Let the chickens stand for 10 minutes before carving.

Buffalo Chicken Wings

(21 Jan 17)

1/2 c all-purpose flour

HOT SAUCE MIXTURE:

1/4 tsp paprika

1/4 c butter

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/4 c hot sauce

1/4 tsp salt

1 dash ground black pepper

10 chicken wings/drummets

1 dash garlic powder

oil for frying

ranch dressing or other dipping sauce

In a small bowl mix together the flour, paprika, cayenne pepper and salt. Place chicken in a large nonporous glass dish or bowl and sprinkle flour mixture over them until they are evenly coated. Cover dish or bowl and refrigerate for 60-90 minutes. Heat oil in a deep fryer or deep skillet to medium high (375 degrees). The oil should be just enough to cover the wings entirely, an inch or so deep. Combine the butter, hot sauce, pepper and garlic powder in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir together and heat until butter is melted and mixture is well blended. Remove from heat and reserve for serving. Fry coated wings in hot oil for 10-15 minutes, or until parts of wings begin to turn brown. Remove, drain, and place them in a serving bowl, adding the hot sauce mixture and stir to coat. Serve, and present with ranch dressing or other dipping sauce.

Rice Crispy Chicken Nuggets

(21 Jan 17*)

1 egg

1/4 c olive oil

salt and ground black pepper, to taste

2 Tbs butter

2 1/2 c crispy rice cereal, crushed

APRICOT SAUCE:

1 1/4 lb skinless boneless chicken breasts, cut

1/2 c apricot preserves

into 20 pieces

2 Tbs water

Beat egg, salt and pepper together in a bowl. Pour crushed cereal into a separate bowl. Coat chicken pieces in the egg mixture. Press chicken pieces into cereal until coated. Heat oil and butter together in a skillet over medium heat; cook and stir chicken until coating is golden brown and meat is no longer pink in the center, about 7 minutes. Whisk preserves and water together in a saucepan over medium-low heat until heated through and smooth, 2-3 minutes. Serve apricot sauce with the chicken nuggets.

January 14, 2017

Beer Pizza

(14 Jan 17)

1 Tbs olive oil

1 c beer

1/2 lb pepperoni sausage, diced

1 clove garlic, minced

1 lb bacon, diced

1 tsp dried oregano

1 can (4 oz) sliced mushrooms, drained

1/2 tsp dried thyme

1 onion, chopped

1/2 tsp salt

1 green bell pepper, chopped

2 unbaked pizza crusts

1 can (28 oz) tomato sauce

1 pkg (8 oz) shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat, and saute the pepperoni and bacon until evenly browned. Mix in the mushrooms, onion, and green pepper. Cook and stir about 5 minutes until tender. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, mix the ingredients from the skillet with the tomato sauce and beer. Season with the garlic, oregano, thyme, and salt. Allow the mixture to simmer for about 15 minutes, until slightly thickened. Spread over the two pizza crusts, and top with cheese. Bake 20-25 minutes in the oven until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown.

Hot Ham and Cheese Swirls

(14 Jan 17)

2 1/2 c biscuit mix

2 Tbs honey

3/4 c milk

1/4 lb (6 slices) deli ham

2/3 c mayonnaise

1 c cheddar cheese, grated

2 Tbs Dijon or whole grain mustard

Heat oven to 375 degrees, and grease a 13x9-inch baking dish. In a medium bowl, stir biscuit mix and milk to form a thick dough. Dump out onto a floured surface and use a floured rolling pin to roll into a large rectangle, about 1/4 inch thick.  In a small bowl, beat mayonnaise, mustard and honey with a whisk to make the sauce. Spread a few spoonfuls of sauce on dough and top with the ham and cheese.  Starting with one long end, tightly roll up dough. Use a sharp knife to cut into 8 equal rolls. Place rolls in the baking dish, cut side down. Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden. Serve immediately with remaining honey mustard sauce. 

Sweet and Salty Caramel Popcorn

(14 Jan 17*)

1 tsp baking soda

2 1/2 c brown sugar

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 c butter

1 Tbs vegetable oil, or as needed

1 c light corn syrup

1 c un-popped popcorn

1 tsp cream of tartar

1 c chopped strawberry licorice twists

sea salt, to taste

2 c broken small pretzels

Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Measure baking soda and vanilla extract into separate small bowls; set aside. Heat vegetable oil in a large saucepan; add popcorn, cover, and cook, shaking often, until fully popped, about 5 minutes. Transfer popcorn to a large roasting pan using a strainer or your hands, leaving un-popped kernels in the saucepan. Distribute chopped licorice and broken pretzels evenly over popcorn. Bring the brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, and cream of tartar to a boil in a heavy pot, stirring constantly. Place a candy thermometer into the caramel mixture, and continue boiling, stirring constantly, until mixture reaches 265 degrees, which could take up to 10 minutes. Remove caramel from heat, stir in vanilla and baking soda into the caramel; it will foam and rise slightly. Pour hot caramel over popcorn mixture, stirring gently to coat. Spread the popcorn mixture loosely onto the prepared baking sheets. Season to taste with sea salt; set aside to cool, about 20 minutes. Break popcorn mixture into chunks, store in airtight containers.

Southwest Dipping Sauce

(14 Jan 17)

1/2 c mayonnaise

1/4 tsp salt

2 tsp ketchup

1/8 tsp dried oregano

2 Tbs cream-style horseradish sauce

1 pinch ground black pepper

1/4 tsp paprika

1 pinch cayenne pepper

In a small bowl, stir together the ingredients, blending well. Refrigerate until needed. Serve with your favorite chips and crackers.

Simple Bean Dip

(14 Jan 17*)

1 can (16 oz) refried beans

1 tomato, chopped fine

1 pkg (1.25 oz) taco seasoning mix

1 c cheddar cheese, shredded

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, mix the refried beans, taco seasoning, and tomato. Allow the mixture to simmer about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Spoon dip into a medium serving bowl and top with the cheese. Serve warm with tortilla chips.

January 7, 2017

Parmesan Chicken Bake

(7 Jan 17)

2 Tbs olive oil

1/4 c chopped fresh basil

2 cloves garlic, crushed and minced

1 pkg (8 oz) mozzarella cheese, shredded, divided

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese, divided

6 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 pkg (5 oz) garlic croutons

2 c prepared marinara sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat the bottom of a 9x13-inch casserole dish with olive oil, and sprinkle with garlic and hot red pepper flakes. Arrange the chicken breasts in bottom of the dish, and pour marinara sauce over chicken. Sprinkle basil over marinara sauce, and top with half the mozzarella cheese, followed by half the Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle on the croutons, then top with the remaining mozzarella cheese and remaining Parmesan cheese. Bake until cheese and croutons are golden brown and the chicken is no longer pink inside, about 35 minutes to an hour, depending on the shape and thickness of your chicken breasts.

Twice Baked Potato Casserole w/Bacon

(7 Jan 17*)

2 large baking potatoes

2 Tbs butter, melted

1/2 lb lean bacon

1 tsp dried chives

1 1/2 c shredded mild cheddar cheese, divided

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 c sour cream

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1/4 c milk

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9x13-inch casserole dish. Poke a few holes into each potato, and bake potatoes in the preheated oven until fully cooked, about 1 hour. Cool for about 15 minutes. Place the bacon in a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat, cook until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Drain the bacon slices on paper towels and crumble. Cut a thin slice from one side of each potato; carefully scoop out the flesh and transfer to a bowl. Discard skins. Mix 3/4 cup cheddar cheese, sour cream, milk, butter, chives, salt, black pepper, and garlic powder with potatoes. Spread potato mixture into the prepared casserole dish; top with remaining cheddar cheese and the crumbled bacon. Bake in the preheated oven until just bubbling, 10-15 minutes. Cool for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Connoisseur's Casserole

(7 Jan 17)

1 can (11 oz) white corn, drained

1 can (10.75 oz) cream of celery soup

1 can (15 oz) green beans, drained

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 c chopped celery

1/2 tsp pepper

1/2 c chopped onion

4 Tbs butter

1 jar (2 oz) chopped pimento peppers

1/2 c slivered almonds

1/2 c sour cream

1 c crushed buttery round crackers

1/2 c shredded Colby cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix white corn, green beans, celery, onion, pimento peppers, sour cream, Colby cheese, cream of celery soup, salt, and pepper. Transfer to a 1 1/2 quart casserole dish. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, and stir in slivered almonds and crushed crackers. Sprinkle over the casserole. Bake for 45 minutes in the preheated oven, or until bubbly and lightly browned.

Firecracker Casserole

(7 Jan 17*)

January 7, 2017

Parmesan Chicken Bake

(7 Jan 17)

2 Tbs olive oil

1/4 c chopped fresh basil

2 cloves garlic, crushed and minced

1 pkg (8 oz) mozzarella cheese, shredded, divided

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese, divided

6 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 pkg (5 oz) garlic croutons

2 c prepared marinara sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat the bottom of a 9x13-inch casserole dish with olive oil, and sprinkle with garlic and hot red pepper flakes. Arrange the chicken breasts in bottom of the dish, and pour marinara sauce over chicken. Sprinkle basil over marinara sauce, and top with half the mozzarella cheese, followed by half the Parmesan cheese. Sprinkle on the croutons, then top with the remaining mozzarella cheese and remaining Parmesan cheese. Bake until cheese and croutons are golden brown and the chicken is no longer pink inside, about 35 minutes to an hour, depending on the shape and thickness of your chicken breasts.

Twice Baked Potato Casserole w/Bacon

(7 Jan 17*)

2 large baking potatoes

2 Tbs butter, melted

1/2 lb lean bacon

1 tsp dried chives

1 1/2 c shredded mild cheddar cheese, divided

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 c sour cream

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1/4 c milk

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9x13-inch casserole dish. Poke a few holes into each potato, and bake potatoes in the preheated oven until fully cooked, about 1 hour. Cool for about 15 minutes. Place the bacon in a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat, cook until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Drain the bacon slices on paper towels and crumble. Cut a thin slice from one side of each potato; carefully scoop out the flesh and transfer to a bowl. Discard skins. Mix 3/4 cup cheddar cheese, sour cream, milk, butter, chives, salt, black pepper, and garlic powder with potatoes. Spread potato mixture into the prepared casserole dish; top with remaining cheddar cheese and the crumbled bacon. Bake in the preheated oven until just bubbling, 10-15 minutes. Cool for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Connoisseur's Casserole

(7 Jan 17)

1 can (11 oz) white corn, drained

1 can (10.75 oz) cream of celery soup

1 can (15 oz) green beans, drained

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 c chopped celery

1/2 tsp pepper

1/2 c chopped onion

4 Tbs butter

1 jar (2 oz) chopped pimento peppers

1/2 c slivered almonds

1/2 c sour cream

1 c crushed buttery round crackers

1/2 c shredded Colby cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, mix white corn, green beans, celery, onion, pimento peppers, sour cream, Colby cheese, cream of celery soup, salt, and pepper. Transfer to a 1 1/2 quart casserole dish. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, and stir in slivered almonds and crushed crackers. Sprinkle over the casserole. Bake for 45 minutes in the preheated oven, or until bubbly and lightly browned.

Firecracker Casserole

(7 Jan 17*)

2 lbs ground beef

1/2 tsp salt

1 onion, chopped

4 (7 inch) tortillas

1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes w green chile peppers

2 Tbs chili powder

1 can (10.5 oz) cream of mushroom soup

1 Tbs ground cumin

1 c shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x13-inch baking dish. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir the ground beef with the onion in the hot skillet until completely browned, for 7-10 minutes; drain any excess fat. Stir the black beans, chili powder, cumin, and salt to the beef mixture; cook and stir until hot, about 5 minutes. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Arrange the tortillas atop the beef mixture. Mix the tomatoes with green chile peppers and cream of mushroom soup together in a bowl; spread over the tortillas. Top with the cheddar cheese. Bake in the preheated oven until cooked through and the cheese is melted completely, 25-30 minutes.

December 31, 2016

Horsey Deviled Eggs

6 hard-cooked eggs

1/4 tsp ground mustard

1/4 c mayonnaise

1/8 tsp salt

1 Tbs prepared horseradish

dash pepper

1/2 tsp dill weed

sliced green onion tops

Cut eggs in half lengthwise. Remove yolks; set whites aside. In a bowl, mash the yolks. Add mayonnaise, horseradish, dill, mustard, salt and pepper; mix well. Pipe or spoon into egg whites. Garnish with sliced green onions. Refrigerate until serving. Watch them disappear.

Crispy Chicken Taquitos

3-4 chicken breasts, frozen or thawed

1 tsp cumin

8 oz cream cheese

16 taco-sized tortillas, corn or flour

1/3 c jarred whole or sliced jalapenos, roughly

1 1/2 c shredded cheese (Colby Jack, Monterey

chopped

Jack, Mexican blend, or mozzarella)

1 tsp garlic powder

optional toppings: fresh cilantro, dipping sauces

1 tsp salt

such as ranch, salsa, green goddess dressing

Add chicken, ½ cup water, cream cheese, jalapeños, garlic powder, salt, and cumin to crock pot. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high 3-4 hours. Minutes before serving, preheat the oven to 425 and grease a baking sheet with cooking spray. Shred the chicken and stir it in with the other contents of the crock pot. Heat tortillas in the microwave for a few seconds to soften them up, this will make them easier to work with. Sprinkle cheese in the middle of each tortilla. Top cheese with 2-3 tablespoons of shredded chicken mixture. Roll tortillas tightly into a log-shape taquito. Put on a baking sheet and spray heavily with cooking spray. Bake 10-15 minutes until cheese is melted and tortillas begin to brown.

Bacon Crescents

1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

2 Tbs chopped fresh parsley

8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

1 Tbs milk

1/3 c grated parmesan cheese

2 pkgs (8 oz ea) refrigerated crescent dinner rolls

1/4 c finely chopped onions

Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Mix all ingredients except crescent dough. Separate each can of dough into 8 triangles; cut each triangle lengthwise in half. Spread each dough triangle with 1 generous teaspoon cream cheese mixture; roll up, starting at short side of triangle. Place, point-sides down, on baking sheet. Bake 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.

Luscious Slush Punch**

2 1/2 c white sugar

2/3 c lemon juice

6 c water

1 qt orange juice

2 pkgs (3 oz ea) strawberry gelatin mix

2 (2 liter) bottles lemon-lime soda

1 can (46 oz) pineapple juice

Bring the sugar, water, and strawberry flavored gelatin to a boil in a large saucepan; boil for 3 minutes. Stir in the pineapple juice, lemon juice, and orange juice. Divide mixture into 2 separate containers and freeze. Combine the contents of 1 container with 1 bottle of the lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage in a punch bowl; stir until slushy. Repeat with remaining portions as needed.

 

1/4 tsp garlic salt

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

1 lb salmon fillets

1/2 c brown sugar

1 1/2 tsp salt

ground black pepper, to taste

6 Tbs olive oil

6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into

1 1/2 inch pcs

6 wooden skewers

2 large green or red bell peppers, cut into 1 inch pcs

1 large onion, quartered and separated into pcs

12 cherry tomatoes

12 fresh mushrooms

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1 Tbs vegetable oil

1/4 c sliced green onions

4 cloves garlic, minced

12 oz cooked shrimp, tailed removed

1 c sour cream

3 (14.5 oz) cans French style green beans, drained

2 c shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 c crumbled buttery round crackers

1 Tbs butter, melted

5 cloves garlic, minced

salt and black pepper

parsley sprigs

1/8 tsp ground allspice

1/8 tsp ground nutmeg

6 oz pecan halves

1/3 c brown sugar

1/4 c melted butter

1 Tbs orange juice

WHIPPED TOPPING:

1 1/2 c heavy cream

4 1/2 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

sliced almonds, for garnish

November 12, 2016

Slow Cooker Salisbury Steak

2 lbs lean ground beef

2 Tbs oil

1 pkg (1 oz) dry onion soup mix

2 cans (10.75 oz) cream of chicken soup

1/2 c Italian seasoned bread crumbs

1 pkg (1 oz) dry au jus mix

1/4 c milk

3/4 c water

1/4 c all-purpose flour

In a large bowl, mix together the ground beef, onion soup mix, bread crumbs, and milk using your hands, shape into 8 patties. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Place flour on a plate, and dredge the patties in it to coat, and quickly brown on both sides in the hot skillet. Place browned patties into the slow cooker, stacking them alternately like a pyramid. In a bowl, mix together the cream of chicken soup, au us mix, and water. Pour over the meat. Cook on the low setting for 4-5 hours, until the patties are well done.

Slow Cooker Barbeque Ribs**

4 lbs pork baby back ribs

4 Tbs vinegar

salt and pepper, to taste

2 tsp dried oregano

2 c ketchup

2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 c chili sauce

1 dash hot sauce

1/2 c packed brown sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Season ribs with salt and pepper. Place in a shallow baking pan. Brown in oven 15 minutes. Turn over, and brown another 15 minutes; drain fat. In a medium bowl, mix together the ketchup, chili sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, oregano, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and salt and pepper. Place ribs in slow cooker. Pour sauce over ribs, and turn to coat. Cover, and cook on Low 6-8 hours, or until ribs are tender

Honey Garlic Chicken Thighs

4 skinless, boneless chicken thighs

1/3 c honey

1/2 c soy sauce

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 c ketchup

1 tsp dried basil

Lay chicken thighs into the bottom of a 4-quart slow cooker. Whisk soy sauce, ketchup, honey, garlic, and basil together in a bowl; pour over the chicken. Cook on Low for 6 hours.

Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup**

1 lb shredded, cooked chicken

1 tsp chili powder

1 (15 oz) can whole peeled tomatoes, mashed

1 tsp salt

1 (10 oz) can enchilada sauce

1/4 tsp black pepper

1 medium onion, chopped

1 bay leaf

1 (4 oz) can chopped green chile peppers

1 (10 oz) pkg frozen corn

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 Tbs chopped cilantro

2 c water

7 corn tortillas

1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth

vegetable oil

1 tsp cumin

Place chicken, tomatoes, enchilada sauce, onion, green chilies, and garlic into a slow cooker. Pour in water and chicken broth, and season with cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper, and bay leaf. Stir in corn and cilantro. Cover, and cook on Low setting for 6-8 hours or on High setting for 3-4 hours. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly brush both sides of tortillas with oil. Cut tortillas into strips, then spread on a baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven until crisp, about 10-15 minutes. To serve, sprinkle tortilla strips over soup.

November 5, 2016

Pumpkin Scones

1 3/4 c all-purpose flour

1/3 c buttermilk

1/4 c white sugar

1/3 c toasted pine nuts

1 Tbs baking powder

2 Tbs all-purpose flour, or more as needed

1/4 tsp baking soda

1 egg

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp milk

6 Tbs cold, unsalted butter, cut into pieces

1 tsp white sugar

1/2 c pumpkin puree

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Whisk together 1 3/4 cup flour, 1/4 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl until combined. Mix butter into flour mixture using a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Make a well in the center of the flour-butter mixture. Stir in pumpkin puree, buttermilk, and pine nuts until just combined. Sprinkle a work surface with two tablespoons flour. Turn out dough onto the floured work surface. Shape into a rectangle about 1 inch thick. Fold the rectangle in thirds, sprinkle with more flour as needed, and flatten to about 1 inch thick. Repeat two more times. Cut final rectangle into 6 equally-sized squares. Cut each square into triangles and transfer the scones to the prepared baking sheet. Whisk egg and milk together in a small bowl. Lightly brush the top of each scone with egg wash. Sprinkle one teaspoon sugar over scones. Bake in the preheated oven until golden brown, 15-20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Rhubarb Bread**

1 c milk

1 tsp salt

1 Tbs lemon juice

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 c chopped rhubarb

1 1/2 c brown sugar

1/2 c chopped walnuts

2/3 c vegetable oil

1/4 c brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 1/2 c all-purpose flour

1 Tbs butter, melted

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease two 9x5 inch loaf pans. In a small bowl, stir together milk, lemon juice and vanilla; let stand for 10 minutes. In a large bowl, mix together 1 1/2 cups brown sugar, oil and egg. Combine the flour, salt and baking soda, stir into sugar mixture alternately with the milk mixture just until combined. Fold in rhubarb and nuts. Pour batter into prepared loaf pans. In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup brown sugar, cinnamon and butter. Sprinkle this mixture over the unbaked loaves. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of a loaf comes out clean.

Carol's Banana Bread Muffins

2 c all-purpose flour

1 c sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 c butter, melted

1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 1/2 c mini chocolate chips, optional

2 eggs, beaten

1/2 c chopped pecans, optional

October 29, 2016

Cheddar Garlic Chicken Breast

1/3 c butter, melted

1/2 c cheddar cheese, finely grated

2 Tbs garlic, minced

1/4 c fresh Parmesan cheese, grated

2 tsp garlic powder, divided

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1/2 tsp seasoning salt, or salt

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

3/4 c seasoned dry bread crumbs, or plain

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. In a bowl, combine melted butter with fresh minced garlic, 1 teaspoon garlic powder and salt. In another bowl, combine the dry breadcrumbs with cheddar cheese, Parmesan cheese, 1 teaspoon garlic powder and coarse ground black pepper. Dip chicken in butter mixture; then in crumb mixture. Place in prepared pan and bake uncovered for 35-45 minutes or until cooked through, larger breasts may take more time (placing the chicken on a rack in a pan will produce an extra crispy crust). Optional: Top with shredded cheddar or mozzarella the last 5 minutes of cooking.

Chicken Breasts w/Spicy Honey Orange Glaze**

1/4 c honey

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, crushed

2 Tbs frozen orange juice concentrate

4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves

1 tsp orange zest

1 Tbs butter

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 tsp olive oil

1/2 tsp salt

In small bowl, combine honey with juice concentrate, orange zest, garlic, salt and red pepper flakes. Rinse chicken with cold water and pat dry. Season lightly with salt. In large non-stick skillet, heat margarine and oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook about 4 minutes, until seared. Turn chicken, cook another 4 minutes until just cooked through. Pour honey mixture over chicken and cook, turning chicken to coat as sauce begins to thicken, about 2 minutes. Serve chicken breasts with honey-orange glaze spooned over the top

Thai Chicken Breasts w/double sauce

5 Tbs grated fresh gingerroot

4 Tbs olive oil

4 Tbs garlic, chopped

8 Tbs soy sauce

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1 c brown sugar

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin

1 c white wine vinegar

1 c flour

2 tsp fish sauce or anchovy paste

salt and black pepper, to taste

1 c sugar snap peas

Combine the gingerroot, garlic and red pepper flakes in a cup and set aside. Mix flour with salt and pepper to taste and dredge chicken pieces in this. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Saute the chicken until browned on both sides and cooked through. Remove the chicken and put in a warm dish, set aside in low oven to keep warm. Add the ginger-garlic mixture to the skillet and saute until lightly browned. Add the soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar and fish sauce. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring frequently, until the sauce reduces and thickens. Pour the sauce over the chicken pieces in the warm serving dish and keep warm until ready to serve. Trim and shred the sugar snap peas diagonally. Just prior to serving sprinkle the top of the chicken with the shredded snap peas.

Super Easy Oven Fried Thighs**

1/2 c butter

1 Tbs dried parsley

3 Tbs garlic, minced

6 bone-in chicken thighs

3 Tbs soy sauce

dried parsley, to taste

1/4 tsp black pepper

Preheat the oven broiler. Lightly grease a baking pan. In a microwave safe bowl, mix the butter, garlic, soy sauce, pepper, and parsley. Cook 2 minutes on High in the microwave, or until butter is melted. Arrange chicken on the baking pan, and coat with the butter mixture, reserving some of the mixture for basting. Broil chicken 20 minutes in the preheated oven, until juices run clear, turning occasionally and basting with remaining butter mixture. Sprinkle with parsley to serve.

October 22, 2016

Spinach Enchiladas

1 Tbs butter

1 c ricotta cheese

1/2 c sliced green onions

1/2 c sour cream

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 c shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided

1 (10 oz) pkg frozen spinach, thawed, drained

10 (6 inch) corn tortillas

and squeezed dry

1 (13 oz) can enchilada sauce

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion; cook for a few minutes. Stir in spinach, and cook for about 5 more minutes. Remove from the heat, and mix in ricotta cheese, sour cream, and 1 cup of Monterey Jack cheese. In a skillet over medium heat, warm tortillas one at a time until flexible, about 15 seconds. Spoon about 1/4 cup of the spinach mixture onto the center of each tortilla. Roll up, and place seam side down in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Pour enchilada sauce over the top, and sprinkle with the remaining cup of Monterey Jack. Bake for 15-20 minutes in the preheated oven, until sauce is bubbling and cheese is lightly browned at the edges.

Eggplant Tomato Bake**

1/2 c all-purpose flour

1 Tbs peanut oil

1/2 c dry bread crumbs

1 (14 oz) jar spaghetti sauce

2 Tbs Italian seasoning

1 c ricotta cheese

2 eggs

1 c grated Parmesan cheese

2 Tbs water

1 tomato, thinly sliced

1 small eggplant, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds

1 (8 oz) pkg angel hair pasta

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a plastic bag, combine the flour, bread crumbs and Italian seasoning. Shake to mix. In a shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs and water. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add a bit of oil to thinly coat the bottom of the skillet. Dip the eggplant slices in egg, then place in the bag and shake to coat. Fry the slices in the skillet until golden brown on each side. Remove, and drain on paper towels. Spread a thin layer of spaghetti sauce in the bottom of a 9 inch square baking dish. Cover with the eggplant slices, then top with more sauce. Mix together the ricotta cheese and Parmesan cheese; spread over the eggplant. Spread sauce over the cheese, and top with tomato slices. Cover with more sauce, and spread remaining cheese over the top. Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, and cook for about 3 minutes, or until tender. Drain. Serve the eggplant tomato bake over pasta.

Cauliflower Imitation Fried Rice

2 c frozen peas

1 large carrot, cubed

1/2 c water

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 c sesame oil, divided

20 oz shredded cauliflower

4 c cubed pork loin

6 Tbs soy sauce

6 green onions, sliced

2 eggs, beaten

Stir peas and water together in a saucepan; bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook and stir until peas are tender and heated through, about 5 minutes. Drain and discard water. Heat 2 tablespoons sesame oil in a wok over medium-high heat. Cook and stir pork in hot oil until lightly browned on all sides and cooked through, 7-10 minutes. Transfer meat to a plate. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil in the wok. Saute green onions, carrot, and garlic in hot oil until just softened, about 5 minutes. Add cauliflower; cook and stir until cauliflower had a tender but firm to the bite, 4-5 minutes. Stir pork, peas, and and soy sauce into cauliflower mixture and stir-fry until mixture is hot and slightly browned, 3-5 minutes. Move pork-cauliflower mixture to one side of the wok; pour beaten eggs onto empty side. Scramble eggs until cooked through, 3-5 minutes; stir cooked eggs into the pork-cauliflower mixture, breaking up any large chunks.

Artichoke Spinach Lasagna

cooking spray

1 (10 oz) pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed,

9 uncooked lasagna noodles

drained and squeeze dry

1 onion, chopped

1 (28 oz) jar pasta sauce

4 garlic cloves, chopped

3 c shredded Mozzarella cheese, divided

1 (14 oz) can vegetable broth

1 (4 oz) pkg feta cheese w/garlic and herbs,

1 Tbs fresh rosemary, chopped

crumbled

1 (14 oz) can marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook for 8-10 minutes or until al dente; drain. Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and heat on medium-high. Saute onion and garlic for 3 minutes, or until onion is tender-crisp. Stir in broth and rosemary; bring to a boil. Stir in artichoke hearts and spinach; reduce heat, cover and simmer 5 minutes. Stir in pasta sauce. Spread 1/4 of the artichoke mixture in the bottom of the prepared baking dish; top with 3 cooked noodles. Sprinkle 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese over noodles. Repeat layers 2 more times, ending with artichoke mixture and mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle crumbled feta on top. Bake, covered, for 40 minutes. Uncover, and bake 15 minutes more, or until hot and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting.

October 15, 2016

Mexican Monkey Bread

cooking spray

3/4 c jalapeno pepper slices, divided

2 Tbs butter, melted

3/4 tsp dried parsley flakes, divided

1 (16.3 oz) pkg refrigerated biscuits

1/4 c shredded mozzarella cheese

1 1/4 c shredded cheddar cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9x5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Pour melted butter into a small bowl. Cut each biscuit into fourths. Dip each piece of biscuit dough in melted butter to coat. Arrange enough of the biscuit dough pieces in the bottom of the loaf pan to form a single layer; top with 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, 1/4 cup pepper slices, and 1/4 teaspoon parsley. Repeat layering once and top with remaining biscuit dough pieces, pepper slices, and parsley flakes. Mix remaining 1/4 cup cheddar cheese and mozzarella cheese together in a bowl; spread over the top of the ingredients to cover. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, 40-45 minutes. Cool bread in pan for 5 minutes before inverting onto a plate to serve.

Mini Ham Sliders

2 Tbs dried minced onion

24 dinner rolls

1 Tbs prepared mustard

1/2 lb deli or chopped ham

2 Tbs poppy seeds

1/2 lb thinly sliced Swiss cheese

1/2 c butter, melted

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a small mixing bowl, combine minced onion, mustard, poppy seeds, and butter. Split each dinner roll, and make a sandwich of the ham and cheese with the dinner rolls. Arrange the sandwiches on a baking sheet and drizzle the poppy seed/mustard mixture over the sandwiches. Bake for 20 minutes or until the cheese has melted. Serve warm.

Chicken Satay w/Peanut Sauce

1 lb skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut

2 small red chile peppers, seeded and minced

into 1/2 inch strips

1/2 c crunchy peanut butter

1 clove garlic, minced

1 1/34 c coconut milk

1 Tbs fish sauce

2 tsp soy sauce

4 tsp fresh ginger, minced, divided

2 tsp brown sugar

2 tsp peanut oil

1 1/2 Tbs fish sauce

4 shallots, minced

1 1/2 Tbs lime juice

2 tsp garlic, minced

12 wooden skewers, soaked in water 1 hour

Toss chicken, garlic, ginger, and 1 tablespoon fish sauce in a bowl until the chicken is coated in the marinade. Cover, and marinate for 1 hour. While the chicken is marinating, heat the peanut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in shallots, garlic, ginger, and chile peppers. Cook and stir until the shallot begins to turn golden brown, about 7 minutes. Reduce heat to low, and stir in peanut butter, coconut milk, soy sauce, brown sugar, 1 ½ tablespoons fish sauce, and lime juice until blended. Simmer very gently for 10 minutes, then remove from heat and keep warm. Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat and lightly oil grate. Thread chicken onto skewers. Grill chicken skewers on preheated grill until no longer pink in the center, about 3 minutes per side. Serve with warm peanut sauce. Toss chicken, garlic, ginger, and 1 tablespoon fish sauce in a bowl until the chicken is coated in the marinade. Cover, and marinate for 1 hour. While the chicken is marinating, heat the peanut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in shallots, garlic, ginger, and chile peppers. Cook and stir until the shallot begins to turn golden brown, about 7 minutes. Reduce heat to low, and stir in peanut butter, coconut milk, soy sauce, brown sugar, 1 ½ tablespoons fish sauce, and lime juice until blended. Simmer very gently for 10 minutes, then remove from heat and keep warm. Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat and lightly oil grate. Thread chicken onto skewers. Grill chicken skewers on preheated grill until no longer pink in the center, about 3 minutes per side. Serve with warm peanut sauce.

Bacon and Cheddar Stuffed Mushrooms**

3 slices bacon

1 Tbs onion, minced

8 Cremini mushrooms

3/4 c shredded cheddar cheese, divided

1 Tbs butter

Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, dice and set aside. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove mushroom stems. Set aside caps. Chop the stems. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Slowly cook and stir the chopped stems and onion until the onion is soft. Remove from heat. In a medium bowl, stir together the mushroom stem mixture, bacon and 1/2 cup Cheddar. Mix well and scoop the mixture into the mushroom caps. Bake in the preheated oven 15 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. Remove the mushrooms from the oven, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

October 8, 2016

Roasty Toasty Chili**

1/2 lb thick cut bacon, chopped

1 (14.5 oz) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes

1 large yellow onion, chopped

2 c water

1 1/2 lb ground beef

1/4 c chili powder, or to taste

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tsp liquid smoke flavoring

1 Tbs ground cumin, or to taste

salt and ground black pepper

3 (15.5 oz) cans kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 dash hot pepper sauce, or to taste

Cook bacon and onion together in a large pot over medium heat until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add ground beef, garlic and cumin to the pot; cooking and stirring until the beef is completely browned, 7-10 minutes. Stir in kidney beans, diced tomatoes, water, chili powder, liquid smoke, salt, black pepper and hot pepper sauce into the beef mixture; bring to a simmer and cook until thick, about 1 hour. Skim excess grease if desired.

Boilermaker Chili

2 lbs ground beef chuck

1/4 c chili powder

1 lb bulk sausage

1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

3 (15 oz) cans chili beans, drained

1 Tbs minced garlic

1 (15 oz) can chili beans in spicy sauce

1 Tbs dried oregano

1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes with juice

2 tsp ground cumin

1 (6 oz) can tomato paste

2 tsp hot pepper sauce

1 large yellow onion, chopped

1 tsp dried basil

3 stalks celery, chopped

1 tsp salt

1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1 tsp ground black pepper

1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1 tsp cayenne pepper

2 green chili pepper, seeded and chopped

1 tsp sugar

1 Tbs bacon bits

1 (10.5 oz) bag corn chips (Fritos)

2 cubes beef bouillon

1 (8 oz) pkg shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 c beer

Heat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Crumble the ground chuck and sausage into the hot pan, and cook until evenly browned. Drain off excess grease. Pour in the chili beans, spicy chili beans, diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Add the onion, celery, green and red bell peppers, chili peppers, bacon bits, bouillon, and beer. Season with chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, oregano, cumin, hot pepper sauce, basil, salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika, and sugar. Stir to blend, then cover and simmer over low heat for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally. After 2 hours, taste, and adjust salt, pepper, and chili powder if necessary. The longer the chili simmers, the better it will taste. Remove from heat and serve, or refrigerate, and serve the next day. To serve, ladle into bowls, and top with corn chips and shredded cheddar cheese.

Oktoberfest Chili

2 1/2 lb fresh bratwurst links, cut into 1 in pcs

1 (12 oz) can or bottle German-style beer

2 Tbs bacon drippings, divided

1 Tbs salt

1 large onion, chopped

1 Tbs black pepper

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 Tbs cumin

2 jalapeno peppers, diced

1/4 c chili powder

4 cloves garlic, minced

3 Tbs sugar

2 c sauerkraut, drained

2 tsp garlic powder

2 (15 oz) cans red beans, rinsed and drained

2 tsp paprika

2 (15 oz) cans petite diced tomatoes

1 tsp allspice

1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes

1 tsp oregano

2 (15 oz) cans tomato sauce

2 1/2 oz milk chocolate candy

2 (15 oz) cans tomato juice

Place the bratwurst into a large skillet with one tablespoon of bacon drippings over medium heat; cook and stir the bratwurst until the pieces are browned and no longer pink inside, about 15 minutes. Drain excess grease. Place remaining tablespoon of bacon drippings in a large, deep pot over medium heat, and cook and stir the onion, green and jalapeno peppers, and garlic until the onion is translucent, about 8 minutes. Place the bratwurst into the pot with the vegetables, and stir in the sauerkraut, red beans, petite diced tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato juice, beer, salt, black pepper, cumin, chili powder, sugar, garlic powder, paprika, allspice, and oregano. Bring the chili to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and stir in the milk chocolate until melted and dissolved. Simmer for 5 hours, stirring occasionally.

Chili Colorado

3 Tbs all-purpose flour

1 can (4 oz) tomato sauce

1 1/2 lb boneless pork, cut into 1 inch cubes

2 Tbs chili powder

1 Tbs bacon drippings, or vegetable oil

1 tsp cumin

1 Tbs vegetable oil

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 Tbs all-purpose flour

salt and black pepper to taste

1/4 c chopped onion

3 c water

Place 3 tablespoons flour in a plastic bag. Add pork and shake to lightly coat with flour. Set aside. Heat bacon drippings and vegetable oil in a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add pork and cook until meat is evenly browned, about 5-8 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon flour, and cook 3 minutes. Stir in the onion, tomato sauce, chile powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low and simmer until pork is just falling apart, about 1 1/2 -2 hours. Top with favorite toppings.

October 1, 2016

Turkey Vegetable Meatloaf Cups

2 c chopped zucchini

1 egg

1 1/2 c chopped onion

2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 Tbs Dijon mustard

1 lb lean ground turkey

1/2 c or more barbeque sauce

1/2 c uncooked couscous

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray muffin cups with cooking spray. Place zucchini, onions, and red bell pepper in a small bowl and mix thoroughly. Then, put them in a large bowl with the ground turkey, couscous, egg, Worcestershire sauce and Dijon mustard until well combined. Fill each prepared muffin cup about 3/4 full. Top each cup with about 1 teaspoon barbeque sauce. Bake in the oven until juices run clear, about 25 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Corn Dog Muffins**

2 (8.5 oz) pkgs cornbread mixture

1 1/2 c milk

2 Tbs brown sugar

1 c grated cheddar cheese

2 eggs

9 hot dogs, cut in half

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Stir together the cornbread mix and the brown sugar in a large bowl. Whisk the egg and milk in a small bowl until smooth. Fold the eggs and cheese into the dry mixture until moistened. Spoon mixture into muffin tins about 2/3 full. Add 1 hot dog half to each muffin. Bake for 14-18 minutes, or until golden brown.

Barbeque Beef Cups

3/4 lb lean ground beef

1 (12 oz) pkg refrigerated biscuit dough

1/2 c barbeque sauce

1/3 c shredded cheddar cheese

1 Tbs dried minced onion

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease the cups of a muffin pan. In a large heavy skillet over medium heat, cook beef until evenly brown. Drain excess fat. Stir in barbeque sauce and dried onion. Simmer for a few minutes over low heat. Flatten each biscuit, and press into cups of the muffin pan. Make sure the dough comes to the top of the pan. Spoon a portion of the meat mixture into each dough cup. Bake for about 12 minutes, then sprinkle with cheese and bake for 3 more minutes to melt.

"Toddler" Muffins**

1/2 c butter

1 c all-purpose flour

1/2 c brown sugar, or to taste

1/2 c oat bran

2 large bananas, mashed

1 tsp baking soda

1 (4.5 oz) jar baby food squash

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

2 carrots, grated

1/2 tsp salt

2 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease 24 mini muffin cups, or 12 standard muffin cups. In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar until smooth. Mix in the bananas, squash, carrots, and eggs. Stir in the flour, then the oat bran, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt until just combined. Spoon the batter equally into the prepared muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 15-20 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on wire racks. (Try freezing to help the little one who is teething!)

October 22, 2016

Spinach Enchiladas

1 Tbs butter

1 c ricotta cheese

1/2 c sliced green onions

1/2 c sour cream

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 c shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided

1 (10 oz) pkg frozen spinach, thawed, drained

10 (6 inch) corn tortillas

and squeezed dry

1 (13 oz) can enchilada sauce

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion; cook for a few minutes. Stir in spinach, and cook for about 5 more minutes. Remove from the heat, and mix in ricotta cheese, sour cream, and 1 cup of Monterey Jack cheese. In a skillet over medium heat, warm tortillas one at a time until flexible, about 15 seconds. Spoon about 1/4 cup of the spinach mixture onto the center of each tortilla. Roll up, and place seam side down in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Pour enchilada sauce over the top, and sprinkle with the remaining cup of Monterey Jack. Bake for 15-20 minutes in the preheated oven, until sauce is bubbling and cheese is lightly browned at the edges.

Eggplant Tomato Bake**

1/2 c all-purpose flour

1 Tbs peanut oil

1/2 c dry bread crumbs

1 (14 oz) jar spaghetti sauce

2 Tbs Italian seasoning

1 c ricotta cheese

2 eggs

1 c grated Parmesan cheese

2 Tbs water

1 tomato, thinly sliced

1 small eggplant, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds

1 (8 oz) pkg angel hair pasta

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a plastic bag, combine the flour, bread crumbs and Italian seasoning. Shake to mix. In a shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs and water. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add a bit of oil to thinly coat the bottom of the skillet. Dip the eggplant slices in egg, then place in the bag and shake to coat. Fry the slices in the skillet until golden brown on each side. Remove, and drain on paper towels. Spread a thin layer of spaghetti sauce in the bottom of a 9 inch square baking dish. Cover with the eggplant slices, then top with more sauce. Mix together the ricotta cheese and Parmesan cheese; spread over the eggplant. Spread sauce over the cheese, and top with tomato slices. Cover with more sauce, and spread remaining cheese over the top. Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, and cook for about 3 minutes, or until tender. Drain. Serve the eggplant tomato bake over pasta.

Cauliflower Imitation Fried Rice

2 c frozen peas

1 large carrot, cubed

1/2 c water

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 c sesame oil, divided

20 oz shredded cauliflower

4 c cubed pork loin

6 Tbs soy sauce

6 green onions, sliced

2 eggs, beaten

Stir peas and water together in a saucepan; bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook and stir until peas are tender and heated through, about 5 minutes. Drain and discard water. Heat 2 tablespoons sesame oil in a wok over medium-high heat. Cook and stir pork in hot oil until lightly browned on all sides and cooked through, 7-10 minutes. Transfer meat to a plate. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons sesame oil in the wok. Saute green onions, carrot, and garlic in hot oil until just softened, about 5 minutes. Add cauliflower; cook and stir until cauliflower had a tender but firm to the bite, 4-5 minutes. Stir pork, peas, and and soy sauce into cauliflower mixture and stir-fry until mixture is hot and slightly browned, 3-5 minutes. Move pork-cauliflower mixture to one side of the wok; pour beaten eggs onto empty side. Scramble eggs until cooked through, 3-5 minutes; stir cooked eggs into the pork-cauliflower mixture, breaking up any large chunks.

Artichoke Spinach Lasagna

cooking spray

1 (10 oz) pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed,

9 uncooked lasagna noodles

drained and squeeze dry

1 onion, chopped

1 (28 oz) jar pasta sauce

4 garlic cloves, chopped

3 c shredded Mozzarella cheese, divided

1 (14 oz) can vegetable broth

1 (4 oz) pkg feta cheese w/garlic and herbs,

1 Tbs fresh rosemary, chopped

crumbled

1 (14 oz) can marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add noodles and cook for 8-10 minutes or until al dente; drain. Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and heat on medium-high. Saute onion and garlic for 3 minutes, or until onion is tender-crisp. Stir in broth and rosemary; bring to a boil. Stir in artichoke hearts and spinach; reduce heat, cover and simmer 5 minutes. Stir in pasta sauce. Spread 1/4 of the artichoke mixture in the bottom of the prepared baking dish; top with 3 cooked noodles. Sprinkle 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese over noodles. Repeat layers 2 more times, ending with artichoke mixture and mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle crumbled feta on top. Bake, covered, for 40 minutes. Uncover, and bake 15 minutes more, or until hot and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting.

October 15, 2016

Mexican Monkey Bread

cooking spray

3/4 c jalapeno pepper slices, divided

2 Tbs butter, melted

3/4 tsp dried parsley flakes, divided

1 (16.3 oz) pkg refrigerated biscuits

1/4 c shredded mozzarella cheese

1 1/4 c shredded cheddar cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9x5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Pour melted butter into a small bowl. Cut each biscuit into fourths. Dip each piece of biscuit dough in melted butter to coat. Arrange enough of the biscuit dough pieces in the bottom of the loaf pan to form a single layer; top with 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, 1/4 cup pepper slices, and 1/4 teaspoon parsley. Repeat layering once and top with remaining biscuit dough pieces, pepper slices, and parsley flakes. Mix remaining 1/4 cup cheddar cheese and mozzarella cheese together in a bowl; spread over the top of the ingredients to cover. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, 40-45 minutes. Cool bread in pan for 5 minutes before inverting onto a plate to serve.

Mini Ham Sliders

2 Tbs dried minced onion

24 dinner rolls

1 Tbs prepared mustard

1/2 lb deli or chopped ham

2 Tbs poppy seeds

1/2 lb thinly sliced Swiss cheese

1/2 c butter, melted

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a small mixing bowl, combine minced onion, mustard, poppy seeds, and butter. Split each dinner roll, and make a sandwich of the ham and cheese with the dinner rolls. Arrange the sandwiches on a baking sheet and drizzle the poppy seed/mustard mixture over the sandwiches. Bake for 20 minutes or until the cheese has melted. Serve warm.

Chicken Satay w/Peanut Sauce

1 lb skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut

2 small red chile peppers, seeded and minced

into 1/2 inch strips

1/2 c crunchy peanut butter

1 clove garlic, minced

1 1/34 c coconut milk

1 Tbs fish sauce

2 tsp soy sauce

4 tsp fresh ginger, minced, divided

2 tsp brown sugar

2 tsp peanut oil

1 1/2 Tbs fish sauce

4 shallots, minced

1 1/2 Tbs lime juice

2 tsp garlic, minced

12 wooden skewers, soaked in water 1 hour

Toss chicken, garlic, ginger, and 1 tablespoon fish sauce in a bowl until the chicken is coated in the marinade. Cover, and marinate for 1 hour. While the chicken is marinating, heat the peanut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in shallots, garlic, ginger, and chile peppers. Cook and stir until the shallot begins to turn golden brown, about 7 minutes. Reduce heat to low, and stir in peanut butter, coconut milk, soy sauce, brown sugar, 1 ½ tablespoons fish sauce, and lime juice until blended. Simmer very gently for 10 minutes, then remove from heat and keep warm. Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat and lightly oil grate. Thread chicken onto skewers. Grill chicken skewers on preheated grill until no longer pink in the center, about 3 minutes per side. Serve with warm peanut sauce. Toss chicken, garlic, ginger, and 1 tablespoon fish sauce in a bowl until the chicken is coated in the marinade. Cover, and marinate for 1 hour. While the chicken is marinating, heat the peanut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in shallots, garlic, ginger, and chile peppers. Cook and stir until the shallot begins to turn golden brown, about 7 minutes. Reduce heat to low, and stir in peanut butter, coconut milk, soy sauce, brown sugar, 1 ½ tablespoons fish sauce, and lime juice until blended. Simmer very gently for 10 minutes, then remove from heat and keep warm. Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat and lightly oil grate. Thread chicken onto skewers. Grill chicken skewers on preheated grill until no longer pink in the center, about 3 minutes per side. Serve with warm peanut sauce.

Bacon and Cheddar Stuffed Mushrooms**

3 slices bacon

1 Tbs onion, minced

8 Cremini mushrooms

3/4 c shredded cheddar cheese, divided

1 Tbs butter

Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, dice and set aside. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove mushroom stems. Set aside caps. Chop the stems. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Slowly cook and stir the chopped stems and onion until the onion is soft. Remove from heat. In a medium bowl, stir together the mushroom stem mixture, bacon and 1/2 cup Cheddar. Mix well and scoop the mixture into the mushroom caps. Bake in the preheated oven 15 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. Remove the mushrooms from the oven, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

October 8, 2016

Roasty Toasty Chili**

1/2 lb thick cut bacon, chopped

1 (14.5 oz) can fire-roasted diced tomatoes

1 large yellow onion, chopped

2 c water

1 1/2 lb ground beef

1/4 c chili powder, or to taste

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tsp liquid smoke flavoring

1 Tbs ground cumin, or to taste

salt and ground black pepper

3 (15.5 oz) cans kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 dash hot pepper sauce, or to taste

Cook bacon and onion together in a large pot over medium heat until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add ground beef, garlic and cumin to the pot; cooking and stirring until the beef is completely browned, 7-10 minutes. Stir in kidney beans, diced tomatoes, water, chili powder, liquid smoke, salt, black pepper and hot pepper sauce into the beef mixture; bring to a simmer and cook until thick, about 1 hour. Skim excess grease if desired.

Boilermaker Chili

2 lbs ground beef chuck

1/4 c chili powder

1 lb bulk sausage

1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

3 (15 oz) cans chili beans, drained

1 Tbs minced garlic

1 (15 oz) can chili beans in spicy sauce

1 Tbs dried oregano

1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes with juice

2 tsp ground cumin

1 (6 oz) can tomato paste

2 tsp hot pepper sauce

1 large yellow onion, chopped

1 tsp dried basil

3 stalks celery, chopped

1 tsp salt

1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1 tsp ground black pepper

1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1 tsp cayenne pepper

2 green chili pepper, seeded and chopped

1 tsp sugar

1 Tbs bacon bits

1 (10.5 oz) bag corn chips (Fritos)

2 cubes beef bouillon

1 (8 oz) pkg shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 c beer

Heat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Crumble the ground chuck and sausage into the hot pan, and cook until evenly browned. Drain off excess grease. Pour in the chili beans, spicy chili beans, diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Add the onion, celery, green and red bell peppers, chili peppers, bacon bits, bouillon, and beer. Season with chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, oregano, cumin, hot pepper sauce, basil, salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika, and sugar. Stir to blend, then cover and simmer over low heat for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally. After 2 hours, taste, and adjust salt, pepper, and chili powder if necessary. The longer the chili simmers, the better it will taste. Remove from heat and serve, or refrigerate, and serve the next day. To serve, ladle into bowls, and top with corn chips and shredded cheddar cheese.

Oktoberfest Chili

2 1/2 lb fresh bratwurst links, cut into 1 in pcs

1 (12 oz) can or bottle German-style beer

2 Tbs bacon drippings, divided

1 Tbs salt

1 large onion, chopped

1 Tbs black pepper

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 Tbs cumin

2 jalapeno peppers, diced

1/4 c chili powder

4 cloves garlic, minced

3 Tbs sugar

2 c sauerkraut, drained

2 tsp garlic powder

2 (15 oz) cans red beans, rinsed and drained

2 tsp paprika

2 (15 oz) cans petite diced tomatoes

1 tsp allspice

1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes

1 tsp oregano

2 (15 oz) cans tomato sauce

2 1/2 oz milk chocolate candy

2 (15 oz) cans tomato juice

Place the bratwurst into a large skillet with one tablespoon of bacon drippings over medium heat; cook and stir the bratwurst until the pieces are browned and no longer pink inside, about 15 minutes. Drain excess grease. Place remaining tablespoon of bacon drippings in a large, deep pot over medium heat, and cook and stir the onion, green and jalapeno peppers, and garlic until the onion is translucent, about 8 minutes. Place the bratwurst into the pot with the vegetables, and stir in the sauerkraut, red beans, petite diced tomatoes, crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato juice, beer, salt, black pepper, cumin, chili powder, sugar, garlic powder, paprika, allspice, and oregano. Bring the chili to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and stir in the milk chocolate until melted and dissolved. Simmer for 5 hours, stirring occasionally.

Chili Colorado

3 Tbs all-purpose flour

1 can (4 oz) tomato sauce

1 1/2 lb boneless pork, cut into 1 inch cubes

2 Tbs chili powder

1 Tbs bacon drippings, or vegetable oil

1 tsp cumin

1 Tbs vegetable oil

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 Tbs all-purpose flour

salt and black pepper to taste

1/4 c chopped onion

3 c water

Place 3 tablespoons flour in a plastic bag. Add pork and shake to lightly coat with flour. Set aside. Heat bacon drippings and vegetable oil in a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add pork and cook until meat is evenly browned, about 5-8 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon flour, and cook 3 minutes. Stir in the onion, tomato sauce, chile powder, cumin, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low and simmer until pork is just falling apart, about 1 1/2 -2 hours. Top with favorite toppings.

October 1, 2016

Turkey Vegetable Meatloaf Cups

2 c chopped zucchini

1 egg

1 1/2 c chopped onion

2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 Tbs Dijon mustard

1 lb lean ground turkey

1/2 c or more barbeque sauce

1/2 c uncooked couscous

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray muffin cups with cooking spray. Place zucchini, onions, and red bell pepper in a small bowl and mix thoroughly. Then, put them in a large bowl with the ground turkey, couscous, egg, Worcestershire sauce and Dijon mustard until well combined. Fill each prepared muffin cup about 3/4 full. Top each cup with about 1 teaspoon barbeque sauce. Bake in the oven until juices run clear, about 25 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Corn Dog Muffins**

2 (8.5 oz) pkgs cornbread mixture

1 1/2 c milk

2 Tbs brown sugar

1 c grated cheddar cheese

2 eggs

9 hot dogs, cut in half

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Stir together the cornbread mix and the brown sugar in a large bowl. Whisk the egg and milk in a small bowl until smooth. Fold the eggs and cheese into the dry mixture until moistened. Spoon mixture into muffin tins about 2/3 full. Add 1 hot dog half to each muffin. Bake for 14-18 minutes, or until golden brown.

Barbeque Beef Cups

3/4 lb lean ground beef

1 (12 oz) pkg refrigerated biscuit dough

1/2 c barbeque sauce

1/3 c shredded cheddar cheese

1 Tbs dried minced onion

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease the cups of a muffin pan. In a large heavy skillet over medium heat, cook beef until evenly brown. Drain excess fat. Stir in barbeque sauce and dried onion. Simmer for a few minutes over low heat. Flatten each biscuit, and press into cups of the muffin pan. Make sure the dough comes to the top of the pan. Spoon a portion of the meat mixture into each dough cup. Bake for about 12 minutes, then sprinkle with cheese and bake for 3 more minutes to melt.

"Toddler" Muffins**

1/2 c butter

1 c all-purpose flour

1/2 c brown sugar, or to taste

1/2 c oat bran

2 large bananas, mashed

1 tsp baking soda

1 (4.5 oz) jar baby food squash

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

2 carrots, grated

1/2 tsp salt

2 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease 24 mini muffin cups, or 12 standard muffin cups. In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar until smooth. Mix in the bananas, squash, carrots, and eggs. Stir in the flour, then the oat bran, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt until just combined. Spoon the batter equally into the prepared muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 15-20 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes before removing to cool completely on wire racks. (Try freezing to help the little one who is teething!)

September 24, 2016

Old Fashioned Oven Beef Stew

1 1/2 lb beef stew meat

2 cans (10 oz) condensed beef consommé

3 Tbs all-purpose flour

1 Tbs sugar

2 bags (1 lb) frozen vegetables for stew

1/8 tsp pepper

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained

2 dried bay leaves

Heat oven to 325 degrees. In 5-quart Dutch oven or 13x9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish, toss beef with flour. Add frozen vegetables. In large bowl, mix remaining ingredients. Pour over beef and vegetables; gently stir until mixed. Cover; bake 3 1/2 -4 hours or until beef is tender. Remove bay leaves before serving.

Kielbasa Stew**

4 c coarsely chopped cabbage

1/2 tsp dried basil, crushed

3 c peeled, cubed potatoes

1/2 tsp dried thyme, crushed

1 1/2 c sliced carrots

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1 lb cooked kielbasa, sliced

2 cans (14 oz) reduced-sodium chicken broth

In a 4- to 5-quart slow cooker combine cabbage, potato, and carrots. Top with kielbasa. Sprinkle basil, thyme, and pepper over kielbasa. Pour chicken broth over all. Cover; cook on low-heat setting for 7-9 hours or on high-heat setting for 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 hours. Yield: 4 or 5 servings

Chicken Vegetable Ragout

2 lbs chicken pieces (breasts, thighs, drumsticks)

1 bay leaf

2 Tbs cooking oil

2 c chicken broth

1 large onion, chopped (1 c)

1/2 c dry white wine

8 oz fresh mushrooms, quartered

4 medium carrots, cut in 1-inch chunks

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 parsnips, peeled and cut in 1-inch chunks

1 Tbs fresh or 1 tsp dried thyme, crushed

1/3 chicken broth

1/2 tsp pepper

3 Tbs all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp salt

snipped parsley, optional

Skin chicken. In a 4-1/2-quart Dutch oven cook chicken over medium heat in hot oil for 10-15 minutes or until chicken is lightly browned, turning to brown evenly. Remove chicken; set aside. Add the onion, mushrooms, garlic, thyme, pepper, salt, and bay leaf to Dutch oven; cook for 4-5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Carefully stir in 2 cups chicken broth and the white wine. Add carrots and parsnips. Return chicken to Dutch oven. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 30-35 minutes or until chicken is tender and no longer pink and vegetables are tender. Using a slotted spoon, transfer chicken and vegetables to a serving dish; keep warm. If necessary, spoon excess fat from broth mixture in Dutch oven. Discard bay leaf. Combine 1/3 cup chicken broth and the flour. Stir into broth mixture. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly; cook and stir for 1 minute more. Spoon sauce over chicken and vegetables. Garnish with parsley, if desired.

Country Bean Stew**

6 c water

1 tsp instant beef bouillon granules

2 c dry Great Northern beans

1/2 tsp dried thyme, crushed

3 large carrots, coarsely chopped

1/2 tsp dried oregano, crushed

12 oz lean boneless lamb, cut into cubes

1/4 c dry red wine

8 oz bulk Italian sausage

1/3 c tomato paste (1/2 of a 6 oz can)

3 medium onion, coarsely chopped

1/2 c cubed cooked ham

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 c snipped fresh parsley

3 c water

In a large saucepan, combine the 6 cups water and the dry beans. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Cover and let stand for 1 hour. Drain beans; rinse with cold water and drain again. In a 4- to 5-quart slow cooker, combine beans and carrots. In a large skillet, cook lamb, sausage, onions, and garlic over medium heat until sausage is brown, breaking up sausage as it cooks. Drain off fat. Transfer meat mixture to cooker. Stir in the 3 cups water, the bouillon granules, thyme, and oregano. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 7-8 hours or on high-heat setting for 3-1/2 to 4 hours. In a small bowl, stir wine into tomato paste; add to mixture in cooker along with ham and parsley. Cover and cook for 15 minutes more.

September 17, 2016

Easy Chicken and Biscuits

1 can (10.75 oz) cream of broccoli or celery soup

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

1 can (10.75 oz) cream of potato soup

2 c frozen mixed vegetables

2/3 c milk

2 c cubed cooked chicken or turkey

1/2 tsp poultry seasoning

1 pkg (7.5 oz) refrigerated biscuits

Stir the soups, milk, poultry seasoning, black pepper, vegetables and chicken in a 2-quart shallow baking dish. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until the chicken mixture is hot and bubbling. Stir the chicken mixture. Top with the biscuits. Bake for 15 minutes or until the biscuits are golden brown.

Easy Sweet and Sour Pork**

1 lb boneless pork loin chops, cut into 1 in cubes

1/2 c vegetable oil

1 egg, beaten

1 1/2 c frozen bell pepper and onion stir-fry

3/4 c biscuit mix

(from 1 lb bag)

1/2 tsp salt

1 can (8 oz) pineapple chunks, drained

1/8 tsp pepper

1 jar (11.5 oz) sweet and sour sauce

In medium bowl, toss pork with egg. In 1-gallon resealable food-storage plastic bag, place biscuit mix, salt and pepper; seal bag and shake to mix. Drain excess egg from pork. Place pork cubes in plastic bag; seal bag and shake to coat. In large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Place pork in single layer in skillet. Cook 6-8 minutes, turning occasionally, until brown and crispy on outside and no longer pink in center. Drain on paper towels. Cover to keep warm. Reserve 1 tablespoon oil in skillet; discard any remaining oil. Add bell pepper mix and pineapple; cook over medium-high heat 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently, until vegetables are crisp-tender. Stir in sweet-and-sour sauce and pork; heat to boiling.

Quick Chili Mac Soup

1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef

1/2 tsp garlic salt

1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 c)

2 c diced tomatoes (from 28 oz can)

1/4 c chopped green bell pepper

1 can (11 oz) whole kernel corn w/red and

5 c hot water

green peppers, undrained

1 box Hamburger Helper chili macaroni

2 Tbs sliced pitted ripe olives

1 tsp chili powder

In 4-quart Dutch oven, cook beef, onion and bell pepper over medium-high heat 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beef is thoroughly cooked; drain. Stir in hot water, sauce mix (from Hamburger Helper box), chili powder, garlic salt and tomatoes. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in uncooked pasta (from Hamburger Helper box), corn and olives. Cover; cook 10 minutes longer.

Speedy Cheesy Breadsticks**

6 pcs string cheese (1 oz ea)

1 egg white, lightly beaten

2 pkg (11 oz) refrigerated soft breadstick dough

2 tsp grated Parmesan cheese

2Tbs bottled pesto

1 c bottled tomato sauce, for dipping

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Slice each piece of string cheese in half lengthwise. Lightly flour work surface and rolling pin. Separate each package of breadstick dough into 12 strips. Lightly roll two strips to 1-1/2-inch width. Spread middle of one strip with scant 1/4 teaspoon pesto. Place string cheese half on top of pesto. Spread scant 1/4 teaspoon pesto over middle of second strip of dough. Moisten edges with water. Place, pesto-side down, on top of cheese-topped strip; press edges together to seal. Repeat with remaining dough, pesto and cheese. Transfer cheese-bread sticks to ungreased baking sheet. Lightly brush with beaten egg white; sprinkle with grated Parmesan. With sharp knife, slash three 1/2-inch-long vents in top of each stick. Bake in 375 degree oven for 12-15 minutes or until golden and puffed. Heat spaghetti sauce in small saucepan. Let cheese sticks cool slightly. Serve with warmed spaghetti sauce for dipping. Yield: 12 sticks.

September 10, 2016

Warm Mexican Layered Dip

2 cans (16 oz) refried beans, divided

3 Tbs white vinegar

1 c jarred salsa verde, divided

1/2 tsp sugar

1 pkg (8 oz) shredded Mexican cheese blend

2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced

2 tsp ancho or regular chili powder

1 c shredded lettuce

1 c sour cream

1 avocado, peeled, pitted and diced

1/2 red onion, finely chopped

tortilla chips

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Coat a 1 1/2-quart baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Spread 1 can refried beans into prepared dish. Top with half of the salsa and one cup of the cheese. Stir remaining can of beans to loosen, then carefully spread over cheese layer. Top with remaining salsa and cheese. Cover dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, microwave chili powder in a small glass dish for 45 seconds until toasted. Stir into sour cream. In a small bowl, combine red onion, vinegar and sugar. Set aside. Remove warm dish from oven. Uncover and top with sour cream, tomatoes, lettuce, avocado and pickled red onions. Serve with chips.

Mexican Chicken and Rice**

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

3-4 Tbs finely chopped fresh jalapeno

1/2 tsp salt, divided

chili pepper

3/4 tsp ground black pepper, divided

2 tsp lime juice

2 tsp olive oil, divided

1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and

1/2 c chopped onion (1 medium)

sliced 1/2 inch thick (about 2 cups)

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 pkg (8.8 oz) cooked whole grain brown rice

1/4 c reduced sodium chicken broth

1/4 c snipped fresh cilantro

1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes

lime wedges

Sprinkle chicken breast halves with1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. In a large non-stick skillet heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium-high heat. Brown chicken breasts in hot oil for 5 minutes, turning once. Add the remaining oil to the skillet. Add the onion and garlic; cook and stir for 2 minutes. Stir in broth, undrained tomatoes, jalapeno, lime juice, the remaining salt and pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in zucchini. Cover and simmer for 3-4 minutes more or until zucchini is crisp-tender and chicken is no longer pink (170 degrees). Stir in rice, heat through. Sprinkle each serving with cilantro and serve with lime wedges.

Mexican Chorizo Noodle Bowl

1 lb uncooked chorizo or hot Italian sausage

1 tsp ground cumin

2 cloves garlic, minced

10 oz dried vermicelli or angel hair pasta

3 cans (14 oz) chicken or vegetable broth

1 c chopped zucchini (1 small)

2 c bottled salsa

2/3 c shredded mozzarella or asadero cheese

1-2 cans chipotle peppers in adobo sauce,

1/4 c snipped fresh cilantro or Italian

drained and finely chopped

leaf parsley

1 tsp dried oregano

fresh cilantro sprigs, optional

Remove casing from chorizo, if present. Crumble chorizo. In a four-quart Dutch oven cook chorizo and garlic until chorizo is brown; drain off fat. Stir broth,