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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Meal Plan 11.28 - 12.4

Well I hope you had a great Thanksgiving and you survived Black Friday, if you ventured out.  I did just to Old Time Pottery to pick up some things to finish our wreaths.  Then we rode the Polar Express Train in French Lick, Indiana.  We had a very nice time. 

Enjoy your week, Be thankful for your blessings both big & small, Love your family, and don't forget to play with your food!

Cincinnati Turkey Chili

Servings: 4
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Start to finish: 34 minutes
  • 4 ounces uncooked spaghetti
  • Cooking spray
  • 8 ounces lean ground turkey
  • 1 1/2 cups prechopped onion, divided
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon bottled minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 can kidney beans (15-ounce) rinsed and drained
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (14.5-ounce) undrained
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chopped semisweet chocolate
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese (3 ounces)

  1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain; set aside.
  2. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add turkey; cook 3 minutes, stirring to crumble. Add 1 cup onion, bell pepper, and garlic; sauté 3 minutes. Stir in chili powder and next 5 ingredients (through allspice); cook 1 minute. Add broth, beans, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in chocolate and salt. Serve chili over spaghetti; top with remaining 1/2 cup onion and cheese.

Roast Chicken with Balsamic Bell Peppers

Servings: 4
Start to finish: 40 minutes
Notes: Pinot Noir & Chardonnay (Chile) will pair nicely with this dish.  We will have vegis also.

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 4 skinless (6-ounce) boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 cups thinly sliced red bell pepper
  • 1 cup thinly sliced yellow bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots (about 1 large)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  1. Preheat oven to 450°.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Combine 1/2 teaspoon salt, fennel seeds, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, garlic powder, and oregano. Brush chicken with 1 1/2 teaspoons oil; sprinkle spice rub over chicken. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons oil to pan. Add chicken; cook 3 minutes or until browned. Turn chicken over; cook 1 minute. Arrange chicken in an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 450° for 10 minutes or until done.
  3. Heat remaining olive oil over medium-high heat. Add bell peppers, shallots, and rosemary; sauté 3 minutes. Stir in broth, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Reduce heat; simmer 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high. Stir in vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; cook 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Serve bell pepper mixture over chicken.

Spice-Rubbed Pork Chops

Servings: 2
Start to finish: 40 minutes
Serving Ideas: Syrah & Riesling wines will pair nicely.  We will also indulge in vegis & a salad with dinner. 
  • 2 boneless pork loin chops (about 3/4-inch thick) (4-ounce)
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  1. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Sprinkle pork with 1/8 teaspoon garlic salt. 
  3. Combine coriander, cumin, and sugar in a shallow bowl. 
  4. Sprinkle spice mixture over 1 side of pork. 
  5. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. 
  6. Add pork to pan, spice side down. 
  7. Cook 2 minutes or until browned. 
  8. Turn pork over, and cook 4 minutes or until done.

Maple and Soy-Glazed Flank Steak

Servings: 4
Start to finish: 40 minutes
Notes: Maple syrup has a vanilla-caramel flavor; do not substitute pancake syrup.
Syrah & Pinot Noir will pair nicely with this dish.

  • 1 flank steak (1-pound) trimmed
  • 1/4 cup less-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons sake or dry sherry
  • 2 teaspoons dark sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha (Asian hot chile sauce)
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Cooking spray

  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Pierce steak gently on both sides. Combine steak and next 6 ingredients (through pepper) in a shallow dish; turn to coat. Marinate at room temperature 20 minutes, turning occasionally.
  3. Remove steak from marinade, reserving marinade. Place steak on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Pour marinade into a small skillet; bring to a boil, stirring well. Cook over medium-high heat 3 minutes or until thick and syrupy.
  4. Brush steak with half of glaze; broil 5 minutes. Turn steak over, and brush with remaining glaze; broil 5 minutes or until desired degree of doneness. Place steak on a cutting board; let stand 5 minutes. Cut steak diagonally across grain into thin slices.

Antipasto-Style Penne

Servings: 6
Notes: If you prefer crispy prosciutto, spread it out on a baking sheet and broil 4 minutes.
Serving Ideas: Merlot or Pinot Grigio wines will pair nicely with this dinner. 

  • 1 medium red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, chopped
  • 1/3 cup refrigerated pesto
  • 3 ounces prosciutto, chopped
  • 1 jar oil-packed sun-dried tomato halves (7-ounce) drained and chopped
  • 1 jar marinated quartered artichoke hearts (6-ounce) drained and chopped
  • 8 ounces uncooked penne pasta (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (2 ounces) divided
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Cut bell pepper in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membranes. Place pepper halves, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten with hand. Broil 8 minutes or until blackened. Place in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Let stand 5 minutes. Peel and chop bell pepper; place in a large bowl. Stir in olives, pesto, prosciutto, tomatoes, and artichokes.
  3. Cook the pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Add cooked pasta and 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese to bell pepper mixture, and toss gently to combine. Spoon about 1 cup pasta mixture into each of 6 bowls, and sprinkle each serving with 2 teaspoons remaining cheese and 2 teaspoons pine nuts.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Meal Plan 11/21 - 11/27

Well, this week we are going to be cleaning out the freezer till Thursday.  So, I'm not sure what we will be eating this week.  Should be very fun & interesting...

So, instead of giving you my weekly meals for each night, I've given you the recipes we will be having on Thanksgiving.  Doubtful we will have cranberry sauce, but I thought I'd give you the family recipe anyway.  We haven't decided on desserts yet.  Maybe a dessert fondue....

Enjoy your week, Be thankful for your blessings both big & small, Love your family, and don't forget to play with your food!

Smoked Turkey Breast & Smoked Herb Crusted Pork Loin

We will be smoking this, so we will be slightly changing the recipe.  Though the title actually says Tenderloin, they are really using a loin.  Loin is much cheaper than a tenderloin.  

Smoked Turkey Breast, sorry no recipe for this one...
We'll be covering it with spices & olive oil.  Then smoking for 30 - 40 minutes per pound.

Potatoes/Stuffing/Mac & Cheese

  • Mashed Potatoes (We'll probably have either garlic mashed potatoes or the chunky red mash...or maybe these) 
  • Caramelized Onion Mashed Potatoes
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Stuffing 
  • Mac & Cheese (Yes, it is a little odd to have Mac & Cheese at Turkey Day, but this is yummy delicious & Andrew loves Mac & Cheese, plus this is a way to dress up the old box stand by.  NOTE:  use the cheese you have in the house or go to your deli and just get what you need.  You also don't need to use all the eggs, 1 or 2 will suffice.)

Sauteed Carrots

Sauteed Carrots

Cranberry Sauce

Perfect Fresh Cranberry Sauce

Rhodes Rolls

Our favorite rolls on holidays...

I take these individual rolls and place 2 (side by side) in cupcake pans and let rise then bake as directed.

Then we top with home made honey butter, YUMM!!!!!


Quick & Easy Chocolate Fondue

  • Dippers:
    • Cookies
    • Brownies
    • Marshmellows
    • Fruit
    • Pretzels
    • Fingers ; )

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Meal Plan: 11/14 - 11/20

Hubby is out of town this week and Grandma Char is coming for a visit.  So, this weeks meals are Andrew's favorites.

Enjoy your week, Be thankful for your blessings both big & small, Love your family, and don't forget to play with your food! 

Monday: Pesto Pasta Chicken

Pesto Pasta Chicken

Tuesday: Pizza Burgers with Garlic Cheese Orzo

 Pizza Burgers with Garlic Cheese Orzo
with Sweet Potato Fries

Wednesday: Pork Chops Stuffed with Smoked Gouda and Bacon

Pork Chops Stuffed with Smoked Gouda and Bacon

Served with Spinach Salad and Green Giants Healthy Heart Vegis & Barley.

Andrew doesn't like the salad, but will eat all of the barley & carrots. 

Thursday: Better than Best Fried Chicken

Better than Best Fried Chicken
I'll probably make him some mac & cheese and a vegi...

Saturday: Pancakes

& Bacon


We will go out to dinner to celebrate Daddy's return.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Grilled Pork Tacos with Summer Corn and Nectarine Salsa

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, divided
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 boneless center-cut loin pork chops (4-ounce)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 ear shucked corn
  • 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup diced ripe nectarine
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lime rind
  • 1 minced seeded jalapeño pepper
  • 8 corn tortillas (6-inch)
  • 1 cup shredded cabbage
  1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Combine 2 teaspoons lime juice, 1 tablespoon oil, and pork in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Marinate 10 minutes at room temperature. Remove pork from bag; discard marinade. Sprinkle both sides of pork with 1/2 teaspoon salt, cumin, pepper, and garlic. Place pork on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 3 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Let stand 5 minutes. Slice pork into thin strips.
  3. Lightly coat corn with cooking spray. Place corn on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 6 minutes or until lightly charred, turning occasionally. Let corn stand 5 minutes; cut kernels from cob. Combine kernels, 2 teaspoons juice, remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, bell pepper, and next 3 ingredients (through jalapeño) in a bowl; toss.
  4. Place tortillas on a grill rack coated with cooking spray, and grill for 1 minute on each side or until lightly browned. Toss cabbage with remaining 2 teaspoons lime juice. Place 2 tortillas on each of 4 plates, and divide pork evenly among tortillas. Top each taco with about 1 tablespoon cabbage mixture and about 2 tablespoons salsa.

Korean-Style Beef Skewers with Rice Noodles

  • 6 tablespoons less-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sambal oelek (chile paste, such as Huy Fong)
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 top sirloin steak (1-pound) sliced against the grain into thin strips
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 wide rice sticks (8 ounces)
  • 3 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions
  1. Prepare grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Combine first 6 ingredients in a zip-top bag. Add beef to bag; seal. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes, turning once. Remove steak from bag; reserve marinade. Thread steak evenly onto 8 (8-inch) skewers. Grill 2 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Combine reserved marinade and water in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute.
  3. Soak noodles in boiling water until tender; drain. Place noodles in a large bowl. Pour reserved marinade mixture over noodles; sprinkle with onions; toss. Serve with skewers.

Restaurant-Quality Baked Potato Soup

  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes, Start to finish: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Servings: 6
  • Link to Recipe
  • 2 potatoes
  • 3 tablespoons margarine
  • 2 cups chopped white onion
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 cups instant mashed potato flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 8 ounces bacon - cooked and crumbled
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Bake potatoes for 1 hour, or until done. Set aside to cool.
  2. Melt butter in a 3 quart saucepan over medium heat. Saute onions until tender and golden brown. Stir in flour, and cook 5 minutes to make a roux. Pour in chicken stock and water. Add cornstarch and mashed potato flakes. Season with salt, pepper, basil and thyme. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.
  3. Remove the skin from the cooled potatoes, and discard. Dice the potatoes into 1/2 inch cubes, and stir into soup, along with the half-and-half. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until thick. Spoon into bowls, and garnish with shredded cheese, bacon and chopped green onion.

Chili Burgers

  • Preparation Time: 5 minutes, Start to finish: 20 minutes
  • Beer , Zinfandel would go well with these burgers
  • Serving Suggestions: Sweet Potato Fries & Salad
  • Note: More chili sauce may be used as desired in patties; I generally almost double the amount, which makes a very moist burger, but it also falls apart easily.
  • Recipe Link
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 1/2 pound Italian sausage
  • 1/3 cup tomato-based chili sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat a grill for high heat. When the grill is hot, lightly oil the grate. 
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the ground beef, Italian sausage, chili sauce, salt and pepper. Form 8 balls out of the meat, and flatten into patties. 
  3. Grill patties for 5 minutes per side, or until well done. Serve on buns with your favorite toppings.

Chicken Puffs

  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes, Start to finish: 35 minutes
  • Notes: Chardonnay would go well with this dinner
  • Serving Suggestions:  Spinach Salad & Green Giant Healthy Heart Vegi/Barley Mix
  • Chicken Puffs, Link to recipe
  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cubed 
    • Use rotisserie chicken to help save time.
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 3/4 package cream cheese (8 ounce)
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 3 cans refrigerated crescent roll dough (10 ounce)
  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, slowly cook and stir skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, onion and garlic. Cook until onions are tender and chicken is lightly browned.
  2. In a medium bowl, blend chicken mixture, cream cheese and butter until creamy.
  3. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
  4. Unroll croissants and divide in half to create 12 rectangles. Place approximately one tablespoon of the chicken mixture on each rectangle. Fold into balls.
  5. Arrange balls on a large baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven 12 minutes, or until golden brown.

Broken Lasagna with Garlic & Baby Spinach

  • Servings: 4
  •  Preparation Time: 15 minutes, Start to finish: 25 minutes
  • Recipe Link

  • 9 lasagna noodles (8 ounces), broken into bite-size pieces
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, slivered
  • 6 ounces baby spinach
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the broken lasagna according to package directions. Drain.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the oil and garlic over low heat. Cook slowly until the garlic just begins to turn golden, 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. Add the spinach to the skillet, turn off the heat, cover, and let sit for 1 minute.
  4. Add the hot pasta to the skillet and toss with the spinach and garlic. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Squeeze the lemon over the pasta and toss again.
  5. Serve topped with the Parmesan.