Monday, November 19, 2012

Thanksgiving Menu

I love planning our thanksgiving menu with my mom, even if it's almost the same every year.  This year our menu is the following:

Fried Turkey (a friend does it fresh thanksgiving morning)
Ham (mom)
Cornbread Dressing (mom)
Cranberry Sauce (me)
Mac and Cheese (me)
Green Beans (mom)
Sweet Potato Casserole (nana)
Broccoli Casserole (me)
Apple Pie (mom)
Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars (me)

What are you having on Thursday?

Monday, October 8, 2012

French Onion Chicken

The picture alone should make you want to fix this chicken.  Of course I saw this recipe on Cassie Craves first and knew we had to try it right away.  We made it the week after she posted.  Gray and I both found it to be wonderfully flavorful.  I'm sure you will see it on our menu plan again soon!

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 stick butter
2 large onions (thinly sliced)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
1 egg (beaten)
1 cup shredded or sliced muenster, gouda, or gruyere cheese (we used gruyere...oh my heavens)

Heat oven to 350.  Melt butter in a pan over medium heat.  Add onions, sugar, salt, pepper and thyme.  Continue to cook the onions, stirring often, until the onions have become soft and caramelized. Remove the onions from the pan.  Season panko with salt and pepper.  Place in a bowl.  In a separate bowl place the beaten egg.  Dip the chicken into the egg and then into the panko mixture.  Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, brown the chicken in the skillet on both sides.  Place the chicken into a greased baking dish.  Top chicken with onions and bake for 15 minutes. Top with cheese and bake for an additional 5 to 10 minutes.  Remove from onion when chicken is done and cheese is melted. 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Roasted Summer Squash

I saw this recipe on pinterest and it reminded me of how my mom fixed squash and zucchini when we were growing up.  This is such a simple and delicious way to fix these vegetables!  The recipe is from The Gracious Pantry but I adapted it slightly.

1 zucchini
1 squash
olive oil
garlic powder
onion powder

Heat oven to 350. Slice squash and zucchini into half inch pieces.  Place on a non stick cookie sheet and brush with olive oil. Sprinkle each piece with a bit of garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper.  Bake for 12 minutes then flip and bake for 10 to 12 more minutes. 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Crock Pot Sour Cream and Bacon Chicken

This is such a great and quick meal, I love anything I can throw in the crock pot and it turns out delicious. I mean, who doesn't? We have made this recipe several times, don't know why it took so long for me to snap a pic! The recipe is adapted from Moms with Crockpots.

8 bacon slices
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 (10 oz) cans cream of mushroom soup
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup flour
Salt and pepper to taste

Wrap each chicken breast with two pieces of bacon then place in the bottom of the crock pot. Mix together the cream of mushroom soup, sour cream and flour. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over the chicken. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Chocolate Caramel Toffee Cake

I made this yummy guy for Gray's birthday. When he picked it out I knew it was going to be great and horrible to have in the house, ha!  It really was soooo good and sooo easy!!! The recipe is from Table for 7.

1 box chocolate or German chocolate cake mix (plus ingredients to make)
1 (14oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1 (8oz) container whipped topping
caramel ice cream topping
1 cup toffee bits

Mix the ingredients for the cake and bake according to directions.  When the cake has cooled for 5 to 10 minutes, poke holes all over the cake and let cool for 1 hour.  Once the hour is up, pour the sweetened condensed milk over the top of the cake. Then drizzle 1/4 cup of caramel sauce over the cake. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours or until cake is completely cooled.  Top with whipped topping, the remaining carmel sauce and toffee bits. Serve right away or store in refrigerator until time to serve. 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Ooey Gooey Cheesesteak Sandwiches

Oh my goodness. These were divine. This picture truly does not do them justice!  I found this recipe over at Fifteen Spatulas.  I'm sure we will be making these again soon, these would be perfect for a Saturday night watching football!

3/4 pound strip steak
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp butter
1/2 a softball sized onion (thinly sliced)
1 small green pepper (thinly sliced)  (we don't like peppers so I didn't use them)
8 oz mushrooms (chopped)
8 slices of provolone
salt and pepper
4 hoagie rolls, sliced in half about 3/4 of the way down

Place the strip steak in the freezer for about 30 minutes. This makes it much easier to slice.  Prepare your other ingredients while it's chilling. In a pan add the olive oil and butter. Add the onions with a bit of salt and pepper. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until translucent. Add the peppers if using and cook for 15 more minutes.  Remove and add mushrooms to pan. Slice the steak now. Heat oven to 350. Continue cooking mushrooms until brown and soft. Add to the onion and pepper mixture. Add the steak to the pan and toss, letting it cook for about 30 seconds on each side. Turn the heat off and add the onions, peppers and mushrooms back to the pan. Divide into 4 sections and top with 2 slices of cheese per section.  Once the cheese is melted, scoop each section into one hoagie roll, wrap in foil and place in the oven for 15 minutes.  When they are done in the even remove from foil and enjoy. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Orzo with Bacon, Spinach and Mushrooms

I love a good orzo dish!  I made this several weeks ago but it will be a great fall dish as well! The recipe is from Mary Ellen's Cooking Creations.

1 tbsp olive oil
4 slices raw bacon (chopped)
1 sm onion (chopped)
 3 cloves garlic (chopped)
3 \mushrooms (chopped)
1/4 cup white wine
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup orzo
1/2 bag fresh spinach (roughly chopped)
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil over medium high heat.  At bacon and saute until brown and crispy. Remove from pan.  Leave 1 Tablespoon of grease in pan.   Add garlic and onions and saute until onions are translucent.  Add mushrooms and continue to saute for 2 minutes.  Add wine and cooked until mostly absorbed.  Add chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Add the orzo and cook until the orzo is done. Once the orzo is done stir in the spinach and bacon.  Add salt and pepper to taste and serve. 

Monday, August 27, 2012

Easy Chicken Pitas

I was going to make a different recipe this night but I pulled some chicken out of the freezer to thaw out and it was insanely freezer burnt. It was so weird because none of the other chicken previously was freezer burnt at all. Grrrr. And those were my last chicken breasts.  I got Gray to grab a rotisserie chicken on the way home and this recipe was created!

1 Rotisserie Chicken
1 Recipe of Tzatziki Sauce
1 Cucumber (cubed)
2 Tomatoes (diced)
1 Onion (sliced)
Feta or Mozzerella Cheese
4 Pitas

Shred the chicken and heat.  Toss with cucumber, tomato and onions.  Toss with Tzatziki using as much or as little as you desire. Warm the pita in the oven.  Top pita with chicken mixture and cheese. Serve right away. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Pasta with Bacon, Zucchini and Cream

I made this recipe a few weeks ago and have thought of it several times since then.  I added tomatoes to the dish and we really loved that addition.  This was a great filling dinner with lots of leftovers (since only two of us eat what I cook) and we both were happy to have it again the next day!  Another winner from Cassie Craves.

1 pound rigatoni/penne/ziti
6 strips bacon (chopped)
2 tablespoons butter
2 medium zucchini (sliced into half-moons)
1 onion (chopped)
2 medium size tomatoes (diced)
3 cloves minced garlic
1/2 cup white wine
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Boil pasta.  While boiling the pasta cook the bacon until crispy and remove.  Leave 1 tbsp of grease in the bottom of the pan. Add butter and saute the zucchini and onion. Season with salt and pepper.  Cook over medium high heat until zucchini is soft and onion is translucent. Add garlic and stir for 30 seconds. Add white wine and stir making sure to get everything off the bottom of the pot. When the wine has reduced add the cream and lower the temperature to medium.  Stir occasionally and cook until the mixture has thickened. Add tomatoes, parmesan cheese and bacon. Add the pasta to the sauce and serve. 

Monday, August 20, 2012

Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

So, my friend Ashley kept telling me I needed to try this recipe. I'll be real here, chocolate chip cookies are not my favorite, don't judge.  If we are at a cookie store I am more likely to pick ginger cookies, molasses cookies, oatmeal raisin cookies or snickerdoodle cookies before I pick chocolate chip.  So even though they aren't my favs I gave this recipe a try and they were fabulous!!!! They really did stay soft for several days. The recipe is from Apple a Day.

3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 350.  In your mixing bowl with your paddle attachment, mix together the unsalted butter and sugars. Beat in the egg and vanilla. Mix in the flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt until fully incorporated.  Add the chocolate chips.  Use a table spoon to drop the batter onto a sheet pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Do not bake for longer than 10 minutes. The will still look doughy but they are done. Remove from oven and let them sit on the pan for 5 to 10 more minutes then remove from pan to cool.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Turkey Avocado Wrap

This is one of my favorite things to make for lunch. It's quick and easy to throw together and I can even make it earlier in the day and have it later if I know our day is going to get crazy.  This recipe makes 1 wrap.

1 Whole Wheat Tortilla
3 Slices of Turkey Breast
1 Slice of Colby Jack Cheese
Sliced Avocado
Diced Tomato

Spread a bit of mayo on the tortilla. Place the cheese on the tortilla, then the turkey, then layer with the remaining toppings. Roll up the tortilla, burrito style and either wrap in foil for later or eat right away.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Crock Pot Chicken Tacos with Black Beans, Beer and Cheddar

So it was a normal day then I saw this recipe over at Cassie Craves. And I was done. Sold. Wanted them that very night.  I waited and put them on the menu for the next week.  The day came and I put them in the crock pot and as it goes with crock pot meals, the house was smelling delicious hours before the meal was ready.  Finally dinner time rolled around and we DEVOURED these bad boys. Oh yum yum yum. Gray and I both thought these were just fabulous!!!!!

2-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup beer
1 tbsp chili powder
1 1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 (15 oz) can black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 cup shredded cheddar
Flour tortillas, sour cream, guacamole, salsa, tomato, onion, etc.

Combine the beer with the chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper.  Place the chicken in the bottom of the crock pot and pour the beer mixture on top.  Cook on low for 6-8 hours.  Without draining the liquid, shred the chicken and add the black beans to the mixture. Let cook for 15 more minutes the mix in the cheddar cheese, let cook for another 5 to 10 minutes. Serve on top of tortillas with toppings. 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Chili Cups

This recipe is based off of the bbq cups recipe from the Country Cook!  We thought these little guys were awesome

1 cup Mrs. Kathy's Hot Dog Chili
1 Can of Biscuits
1/2 Cup Shredded Cheddar

Spray a muffin tin with baking spray. Press the biscuits down in the bottom and around the edges of the muffin tin.  Top with chili and sprinkle with cheese. Bake at 350 until done.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Garlic Dill Dressing

I love homemade dressings, they are really a step above the bottled stuff but I rarely take the time to make them.   This dressing was so easy to throw together.  No one in my house but me eats dressing so this is 100% my opinion but I really enjoyed it.  It's heavy so I don't think I would make it a ton but it's a great creamy dressing.  It went well on my salad that was loaded with veggies and egg.  The recipe is from Sweet Basil.

3/4 Cup Buttermilk
2/3 Cup Sour Cream
1 Cup Light Mayonnaise
1/2 Teaspoon Lemon Juice
1 Teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
1-2 Cloves of Garlic (minced)
1/4 Teaspoon Dry Parsley
1 Teaspoon Dried Chives
1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
3/4 Teaspoon Dill
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
Pinch of Pepper

Whisk together buttermilk, sour cream and mayonnaise.  Add all the seasonings and whisk more. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before serving. Best if made 24 hours in advanced. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Chicken, Broccoli and Brown Rice Casserole

This is my own creation.  I made this a few weeks ago and then the other night I was going to make something similar but Gray requested that I make this again.  It is so easy and I love that it's all we need in a meal!  If you have a family larger than ours (2 people) you might want to double this recipe!

1 Chicken Breast (cooked and shredded)
1 Cup Brown Rice
2 Cups Broccoli (cut)
1 Cream of Chicken Soup
1/2 Cup Milk
1 1/2 Cups Shredded Cheddar
Salt and Pepper to taste

Heat oven to 350. Cook the brown rice as directed on the box.  In a bowl mix together the chicken soup and milk.  Add the chicken, broccoli and rice once it is cooked.  Stir in 3/4 cup of shredded cheddar.  Season with salt and pepper. Pour the mixture into a greased 8x8 baking dish.  Top with remaining cheese. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Foodie Pen Pal Reveal

This month I participated in the Foodie Pen Pal! First of all, if you have no idea what this is head over to The Lean Green Bean. Lindsay heads this up and it is awesome!  I sent a package to Anika at Dogs, Dishes and Decor. Megan at Delightfull Dash was my pen pal that sent me a package. We are actually "neighbors" in way, we live in the same metro area just on way opposite sides! It's been fun to talk to her about all things DC.  And then I got my package in the mail, check out these goodies:

Are you drooling?  So what is all of that. Well there was a cheddar garlic biscuit mix, soft pretzel mix, veggie dip mix, chesapeake bay seafood seasoning, tailgating pasta, a jar of cookie butter, 2 peanutty dark chocolate kashi bars and 2 apple banana fruit wraps, beef jerky strips (for our dog) and a monster truck. She also sent several pamplets and magazines from the places she got our items! So cool! 

I don't even know where to being. We are saving the pretzel mix and the tailgate pasta for football season. Isn't the pasta the cutest?  A went nutty over the shapes and keeps begging us to cook it, I really want to save it though. He might wear me down before football season if he keeps it up! Haha. 

We are headed to the beach in a few weeks and I am saving the veggie dip and biscuit mix to take on vacation with us. The kashi bars and fruit strips were stolen by Gray and they are gone!  And the cookie butter, ohhhh the cookie butter! I have some plans for it soon so be on the look out!  We keep meaning to get some crabs too so we can use the chesapeake bay seasoning, there is a man that sells crabs on the side of the road not too far from us, I just keep forgetting when I am making our menu plan.  Plus I have never cooked crab before. Eek! That should be an adventure.   And how sweet was Megan to include something for Rivers (our dog) and that little monster truck for A.  He loves monster trucks and was so excited for his treat!  We have spent many days rolling that truck over his hot wheel cars ;) 

Thank you again, Megan! We love everything!!!!! 

Monday, July 30, 2012

Mrs. Kathy's Hot Dog Chili

Mrs. Kathy is one of my parents good friends and her hot dog chili is my absolute favorite.  Whenever we make hot dogs, I throw together this chili.

1 lb Ground Beef
1 Can Condensed Tomato Soup
2 Tbsp Ketchup
1 Tbsp Mustard
1-2 Tsp Chili Powder
1 /2 Cup Chopped Onion
Salt and Pepper to taste

Brown the ground beef and drain off the grease. Add the condensed tomato soup, ketchup, mustard, chili powder, onion, and salt and pepper.  Let cook over medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes or until heated through. Serve on hot dogs right away. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Cheesy Lime Chicken

This yummy little recipe was found over that Mommy Hates Cooking. We both really enjoyed this meal.  It's going to be a great addition to the rotation.

3-4 Chicken Breasts
1/2 Cup All Purpose Flour
1 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Paprika
1/4 Tsp Pepper
1 Tsp Dill Weed
1/2 Lime
 Swiss Cheese Slices

Heat oven to 425.  In a bowl mix together the flour, salt, paprika, pepper and dill.  Coat the chicken in the flour mixture and place on a wire rack or in a pan. Squeeze lime juice evenly over each chicken breasts.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and top each chicken breasts with a slice of swiss cheese. Place back in the oven for an additional 10 to 20 minutes or until chicken is done. Top with another squeeze of lime juice and serve. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Ranch Roasted Potatoes

When I saw this recipe I just knew that I wanted to try it. It took me a while to get to it but I am so glad that I did. There is nothing like Roasted Potatoes, no matter how you season them they are amazing.  We loved the ranch seasoning on these.  They were a great addition to our bbq sandwiches but I can only imagine that they would be good with just about anything!  This recipe was slightly adapted from LaaLoosh.

10 to 15 red potatoes (washed and cut into quarters)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 packet ranch mix
1 tsp salt

Heat oven to 425.  Coat the potatoes with olive oil then mix in the ranch seasoning and salt. Spray a cookie sheet with nonstick spray (line with foil if you would like) then spread the potatoes out evenly.  Bake for 15 minutes then turn the potatoes and bake for 10 to 15 minutes more. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Brown Sugar Spiced Pork Tenderloin

I think this is one of my new favorite ways to cook pork tenderloin. I adapted this recipe from Momma Hen's Kitchen.

1 pork tenderloin
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp Cajun seasoning
 2 -3 tbs olive oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp garlic salt

Heat oven to 350. Combine the black pepper, cumin, chili powder, cajun seasoning, brown sugar and garlic salt.  Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat.  Rub the pork tenderloin with the mixture. Sear the pork tenderloin on each side for 3 to 4 minutes.  Place in the oven and cook for 25 more minutes.  Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing. 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Creamy Cheesy Chicken Crescent Bundles

I'm sure you are all totally shocked by this recipe, chicken and crescent rolls? no way! ha. Anyways I heavily adapted this recipe from Simply You and Me.  And it was just as delicious as I thought it would be!

1 can Crescent Rolls
1 Chicken Breast (cooked and shredded)
4 oz Cream Cheese (softened)
1/4 cup Onion (diced)
1/2 cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
1/4 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste

1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
3/4 cup of Shredded Cheddar Cheese
1/2 cup Milk

Heat oven to 350. Grease a casserole dish.  Mix together chicken, cream cheese, onion, 1/2 cup cheddar, garlic powder and season with salt and pepper.  Fill each crescent with a scoop of the mixture and wrap it up. Place in the casserole dish.  Top them with extra shredded cheddar if desired. In a sauce pan heat the chicken soup and milk, once it is warm add the shredded cheddar and mix until it is melted. Pour over the top of the crescent bundles. Bake for 30 minutes.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Parmesan Lemon Brown Rice

I have such a hard time coming up with new side dishes. We love steamed veggies and they are so healthy and easy that we usually just do that.  I was really excited to try this recipe though.  I made it one night when my mom was in town and we all loved it! And it was EASY. This is one of those recipes that will really impress your guests without a lot of effort. I adapted it from Momma Hen's Kitchen.

1 1/2 cups instant brown rice
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp dried basil
half of a lemon
1/8 tsp black pepper

Cook the brown rice in the chicken broth, follow the directions on the box just replace water with broth. Once the rice is cooked stir in the Parmesan cheese, parsley, basil, black pepper and the juice from half a lemon. Serve right away. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Pimento Cheese, Fried Green Tomato and Bacon Sandwich

There is this restaurant back home called Pawley's Front Porch.  It's good. So good in fact, that they have been on the Triple D (Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives).  It's a burger place but I always get this sandwich. Ugh, it's soooo good. I have to say my version was delicious but Pawley's has me beat with their Jalapeno Bacon and Cheddar Jalapeno Bread (which they don't always have).  Nevertheless this sandwich is the aw-some.

Fried Green Tomatoes (you just need 1 or 2 per sandwich depending on how big they are)
Pimento Cheese (I used Zoe's pimento cheese because Gray hates mayo and their's doesn't have it or if it does, it has very little)

Toast your bread.  Spread a nice layer of pimento cheese on the bread, top with fried green tomatoes and 4 strips of bacon.  Put in the oven for 1 or 2 minutes to the pimento cheese gets nice and melted. Eat right away.

This recipe was featured on Eat At Home Cooks Ingredient Spotlight for Tomatoes.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Fried Green Tomatoes

I grew up in the South. Actually, I lived in the South until a few months ago. Some might say I still live in the South but I promise you that I don't.  If you can't get sweet tea everywhere then it's not the South. That brings us to Fried Green Tomatoes, I grew up with these bad boys. And I adore them. I had never made them until the other night though.  After being very homesick last week, I needed some South back in my life so a special sandwich (which is coming tomorrow) was put on the menu and I needed to fry up some of these bad boys. I read about 5 different recipes and ended up making this up myself.

2 Green Tomatoes (sliced into half inch circles)
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp cajun seasoning
1/4 cup milk
1 egg
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
canola oil

After slicing the tomatoes lay them on a paper towel and let them sit for several minutes. Heat oil over medium heat.  Season the tomatoes with salt. In one bowl place the flour and cajun seasoning, in a separate bowl place the milk and the egg, and in the last bowl place the cornmeal. Mix the flour and cajun seasoning together. Beat the egg and milk together.   Dip the tomato in the flour, then the egg mixture then the cornmeal.  Once the oil has heated to the desired temperature place the tomatoes in oil. Fry on each side for 3 to 5 minutes or until golden brown.  When they are done, place on a paper towel to drain.

This recipe was featured on Eat At Home Cooks Ingredient Spotlight for Tomatoes.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Three Cheese Baked Tortellini

Looking at this picture is making me crave this all over again. There is no doubt about it, we love tortellini in this family.  Add some spinach and a good sauce and we are set to go! This recipe is adapted from Amy's Cooking Adventures.

1 (9oz) package whole wheat three cheese tortellini
2 cups fresh spinach
1 cup homemade or jarred pasta sauce
4 oz cream cheese (softened)
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese (divided)
1/4 cup lowfat milk
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese

Heat oven to 350. Bring water to a boil.  Cook pasta as directed. Meanwhile in a pot, combine the pasta sauce, cream cheese, 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese and milk.  Cook until everything is melted and smooth.  Add the spinach and mix in. Once the pasta is done cooking add to the sauce, stir to coat and pour into a baking dish.  Top with mozzarella cheese and remaining parmesan cheese.  Bake for 15 to 25 minutes. 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Ranch Chicken Tacos

We had these last night and they were awesome.  I was unsure about what the hubs was going to think because he likes ranch flavoring, like when i use the packet but HATES ranch dressing, mainly because he hates mayo.  Well he ended up really enjoying them as did I.  This recipe is from Do You Smell That?  This recipe was just enough for the two of us so if you have more than two people I would double it!

2 Chicken Breast
1/2 Packet of Taco Seasoning
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Ranch Dressing
Taco Shells
Toppings: Cheese, Sour Cream, Tomato, Lettuce, Avocado, Etc.

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Meanwhile cut the chicken breast into small chunks.  Saute the chicken in the oil.  Once the chicken is cooked through add the taco seasoning and cook until the chicken is well coated with the seasoning.  Turn down the heat and stir in the ranch dressing.  Let that stand for 3 or 4 minutes.  Fix your tacos and enjoy! 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Strawberry Shortcake Pancakes

When I saw these on Cooking with Cristine I knew I wanted to make them right away!  What a perfect summery treat.  I made these for dinner one night and Gray and I both really enjoyed them.  Perfectly topped with some freshly made homemade whip cream and fresh cut strawberries.

1 1/2 cups flour
2 1/2 tbsp sugar
3/4 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 egg
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
3 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
 Sliced Strawberries
Homemade Whipped Cream

In a mixing bowl combine flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. In a separate mixing bowl combine the buttermilk, egg, oil, and extracts.  Mix the wet ingredients into the dry.  Heat a pan over medium low heat and cook pancakes until done. Top with whipped cream and strawberries.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole

Oh this one, this one is a keeper.  I was a bit unsure about it but I have no idea why. Easy, yummy, filling, not a lot of dishes to clean.  Really you can't go wrong if you fix this for dinner.  I actually cut the recipe in half since there were only two of us and it was more than enough rice!  If you are feeding a family of 4 or 5 this should be plenty of rice for your family! The recipe is from Favorite Family Recipes.

4-6 boneless skinless chicken breast
2 c. uncooked brown rice
1 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese (divided)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
 2 cans cream of chicken soup
3 cups water
1 envelope Lipton Onion Soup Mix

Heat oven to 350.  Place rice in the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish.  Top with 1 cup of cheese, salt and pepper. Place chicken breast on top, then pour the cream of chicken soup over the chicken and rice. Pour water over that then sprinkle the onion soup mix over the top.  Bake uncovered for 1 hour and 45 minutes, checking after 1 hour to see if more water is needed to stay moist. Remove from oven and sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup of cheese. 

Friday, May 18, 2012

Easy Biscuit Pizzas

I'm the worst at eating lunch. I snack instead which isn't good. I am trying to be better about fixing a real lunch and this recipe has come in nice and handy.  It's perfect with a little salad on the side.  In fact, as I type this they are in the oven.  These little pizzas would be perfect for kiddos too! I would totally feed these to my little guy, except he doesn't eat cheese.  They would be great for easy lunches this summer.  This recipe was inspired this recipe at Miss in the Kitchen.

1 Can of Pillsbury Jr. Biscuits
Pizza Sauce
Mozzarella Cheese
Toppings (pepperoni, mushrooms, onion, olives, ham, etc.)

Heat oven to 400.  Open the can of biscuits and flat each biscuit either by hand or with rolling pin.  Place on a greased cookie sheet and bake until starting to brown.  Remove from oven and top with sauce, cheese and toppings.  Place back in the oven for 3 to 4 minutes.  To finish, flip the oven to broil and remove when cheese gets bubbly. Let cool for several minutes then serve. 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Stuffing Topped Pork Chops

This is another recipe that has been waiting to post for a while!  For some time I had such a hard time figuring out how to cook good pork chops, thankfully I have recently found a few good recipes for them and this is one.  It sort of reminded me of Swiss Chicken but without the cheese and with pork chops.  Either way this recipe from Life as a Lofthouse but I did make several changes to it.

4-6 boneless pork chops (around 3/4 inch thick)
1 pack chicken stuffing mix
salt, pepper and onion powder
1 tbsp olive oil
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup butter (melted)

Heat oven to 350. Season the pork chops with salt, pepper and onion powder.  Heat oil over medium in a pan and sear the chops for 1 to 2 minutes on each side then place in a baking dish  In a mixing bowl mix together the cream of mushroom and milk, pour over the pork chops.  Mix together the stuffing and melted butter.  Put the stuffing mixture on top of the pork chops.  Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Coconut Banana Muffins

I'm finally getting around to posting these little treats!  It was so hot and felt just like summer when I made them so I needed a yummy summery treat.  These were great.  I sent half of them to work with G and he came back with rave reviews! This recipe is from DIY Du Jour.

1 1/4 cups of mashed banana (about 3 bananas)
1/2 cup shredded coconut (and more for the top)
1 1/8 cups of sugar
2 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 eggs
4 tbsp unsalted butter (melted and cooled)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Heat oven to 425. Line the muffin tin with liners.  Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl and set aside. In a separate large bowl mix together, sugar, eggs, butter, vegetable oil, buttermilk and vanilla extract.  Combine the egg mixture, coconut, banana and flour mixture.  Just mix until combined.  Evenly distribute the batter into the muffins liners.  Tops with shredded coconut then sprinkle with a bit of sugar.  Bake for 17 to 19 minute.  Let cool for 3 to 5 minute then transfer to a wire rack. 

Friday, March 30, 2012

Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Bake

Chicken, Broccoli, Cheese. Cassie Craves. Enough said?

1 pound broccoli florets
4 medium-sized chicken breasts
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese (divided)
1 tube buttery crackers (crushed)
1 stick melted butter
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1/3 cup chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cups milk

Heat oven to 350. Steam broccoli for 2 minutes. Season chicken with Salt and Pepper. Place chicken in a greased baking dish and top with broccoli. In a saucepan melt two tbsp butter, add the flour and stir. Cook until it starts to bubble. Add chicken broth, salt, pepper and milk. Stir until the sauce has thickened. Turn down the heat and stir in 1 1/2 cups of cheese, stir until it is all melted. Pour over the chicken and broccoli. Top with remaining cheese. Crush up crackers and mix with the stick of melted butter. Sprinkle over the top of the cheese. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes or until chicken is done.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

"Unfried" Beans

The other night when I was making these tacos, I needed a side to go with them. I had a can of pinto beans in the cabinet so I figured I would see if making the pinto beans like I make our unfried black beans would work. Gray and I both loved them! What I love about this is that they are super flavorful and you can determine the texture, the texture of canned refried beans gives me the hibby jibbies so this will be our go to recipe when we are craving them!

1 14oz can pinto beans
1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 tsp garlic (chopped)
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp fresh pepper
1/4 cup onion diced
1/3 cup shredded monterray jack (optional)

Combine everything in a pot on the stove and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes. Drain the beans and reserve the liquid. Mash the beans and add back as little or much liquid until you get the consistency that you like. Optional: Place in a dish and top with cheese. Place under the broiler until cheese is bubbly.

Monday, March 12, 2012

White Bean, Spinach and Bacon Soup

I was totally intrigued the second I saw this recipe on the Cinnamon Girl site. We tried it shortly after and I have to say this is one of the best soup recipes I have ever made. We did slightly adapt it for our taste. It's so different from our normal soups and has so much flavor. Plus it's thick and filling. If it weren't already 80 degrees here we would make this again, hopefully a cold front will decide to come through because I would gladly eat this soup again.

2 small heads garlic (roasted and mashed)
olive oil
sea salt and fresh black pepper
8 slices bacon (cooked and chopped)
1 cup yellow onion (diced)
3/4 cups carrot (diced)
3/4 cup celery (diced)
1 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup diced tomatoes
2 (14 oz) cans white beans (drained and rinsed)
11 ounces fresh baby spinach leaves
fresh grated parmesan cheese

In a large soup pot add 2-3 tbsp olive oil. Add onion, carrot, celery, basil, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Cook for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. Add tomatoes, chicken broth, white beans, smashed garlic, and bacon. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 30 minutes. Place 2 to 3 cups in the food processor or blender. Process/Blend until smooth and return to the soup. Add in spinach and let cook for 10 more minutes. Serve with grated parmesan cheese sprinkled on top.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Basic Homemade Granola

We love granola. A lot. And we love the expensive granola. But we have ZERO budget for a 6 dollar bag of granola that we can go through in 3 or 4 days. I have been meaning to try my hand at homemade granola forever but finally got around to it. I totally regret not doing it sooner. It was quick, easy and yummy. I used this recipe on Simply Scratch to kinda guide me but I left out some stuff and added so it is a different recipe. I can't wait to try some other recipes with more "stuff" in it!

4 cups old fashion oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup honey
4 tbsp butter (melted)
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp vanilla extract

Heat oven to 350. Mix together the oats, whole wheat flour and brown sugar in a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl mix together the honey, butter, salt and vanilla extract. Pour the honey mixture over the oat mixture and mix until coated. Pour onto a butter greased cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, break up the granola and flip it. Bake for 8 to 10 more minutes. Store in an airtight container.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Crock Pot Shredded Beef Tacos

This picture in now way does these tacos justice. These were amazing and so tender! It was such a great and easy new way to do tacos. I really liked them but Gray LOVED them, he raved about them the entire time he was eating them! This recipe is from Cooking Classy.

1 chuck roast
1 (14 oz) can beef broth
1 1/2 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tbsp cumin
1/2 tbsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 lime (juiced)

Combine he chili powder, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Place the roast in the crock pot. Add the beef broth and lime juice. Sprinkle the spices over the top. Place the lid on top and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours. Remove from crock pot and shred meat. Add back to the juices for another 30 minutes. Serve with tortillas, salsa, cheese, avocado, tomato, sour cream and any other toppings you would like.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Chicken and Broccoli Pockets

This is my very own creation. I was going to make This recipe from Eat Your Veggies, Peas but ended up switching it around. Gray and I both loved it!!! Cooking with crescents is one of my obsessions currently and we always love the broccoli chicken combination.

1 package crescent rolls
1 1/2 cups fresh chopped broccoli
1 cup chopped chicken (cooked)
4 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 375. Combine the chicken, broccoli, cream cheese and cheddar cheese. Season the mixture. Scoop the filling into the crescent roll and wrap to seal shut. Complete with each crescent roll. Bake for 12 to 15 minute or until golden brown. Serve warm.

This recipes was linked on the Cream Cheese Ingredient Spotlight at Eat at Home Cooks.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Crock Pot Ranch Pork Chops

So yeah, I love my crock pot. You know what else I love? Cassie at Cassie Craves. Of course this awesomeness was found there. This recipe is a keeper!!!!

4-6 pork chops
1 packet dry ranch dressing mix
1 (10oz) can cream of chicken soup

Place pork chops in the crock pot. Mix together the soup and ranch dressing mix. Pour over the pork chops and cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Reese Cup Ice Cream Pie

I a few days before Valentine's Day I sent Gray and email with a list of desserts I thought he would like and told him to pick, this was his choice! I have to say, he made a great decision. I found this recipe over at Kaitlin in the Kitchen. I did make a few minor changes.

1 Chocolate Wafer Crust
8 Reese Cups (chopped into small pieces)
Half a container of Vanilla Ice Cream
2 Heaping Tablespoons Peanut Butter

Place the ice cream in your mixer, add the peanut butter and mix until combined. Add the reese cups and mix until combined. Pour into the wafer crust and place in the freezer for at least 5 hours. To cut, run a sharp knife under hot water, this will help you get a smooth cut. Serve right out of the freezer.