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Friday, March 25, 2011

Week: 3/27

Welcome to a new week, can you believe March is almost over.  I hope this week brings you happiness.

We have a very busy weekend planned.... So, I decided I should post the weeks menu ahead of time so everyone has the menu for the week in case I don't have time over the weekend.

For Christmas, my In-Laws purchased me a Demy.  It is a counter top digital recipe holder.  I LOVE it and highly recommend it for everyone who likes to find recipes on line & have easy access to them in the kitchen.  It works great when the Hubs is using the laptop and I don't have to keep asking him what the next step is...I really like the conversion screen.  It will convert measurements for you.  The best is the substitute pages.  If you don't have an ingredient it will tell you what you can subsitute it with - GREAT idea!  I do have 1 thing I don't really like about it - there are 5 timers (which is awesome), but I haven't figured out a way other than putting post it next to each timer to remind me which recipe the timer is for.  We've only used all the timers once when we were making lots of appetizers and they ALL had different cook times.  Go take a look at it!  I really think you will like the Demy. 

Sorry, I didn't have a chance to get the Grocery List prepared...Please forgive me....

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

Drunken Pork Chops and Savory Green Rice with Fontina

Serves: 6
Suggestions: Salad, Carrots, Squash
Source: Rachel Ray
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 3 large cloves garlic, 2 thinly sliced and 1 finely chopped
  • 3 sprigs rosemary, coarsely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons anchovy paste
  • 4 bone-in pork chops, no more than 1 inch thick
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice
  • 2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup baby spinach or arugula
  • 1 cup flat-leaf parsley
  • A few grates fresh nutmeg
  • 1 plum or vine tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 1/3 pound italian fontina cheese, such as fontina val d’aosta, or gruyère cheese, cut into small cubes
  1. In a shallow dish, whisk the wine, 1/4 cup EVOO, the sliced garlic, rosemary and anchovy paste. Season the chops with a little salt and lots of pepper and add to the marinade. Let sit, turning occasionally, for 10 minutes while you preheat a grill or griddle pan over medium-high heat. Grill the chops, turning once, for 8 to 10 minutes.In a large saucepan, bring the rice, vegetable or chicken stock and 2/3 cup water to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 18 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, using a food processor, combine the lemon juice, finely chopped garlic and remaining 1/4 cup EVOO. Add the spinach and parsley and process. Fluff the rice with a fork, season with the nutmeg and add to a serving bowl. Stir in the tomato and the spinach dressing; mix in the cheese. Serve with the chops.

Sausage and Egg Casserole

Source:  A Southern Fairytale
  • 4 C frozen shredded hash browns
  • 2 C shredded cheddar
  • 1 lb (cooked) breakfast sausage, I use the hot sausage because we like a little zoomph in our food
  • 1/2 C green onion, chopped
  • 8 eggs, beaten
  • 2 (12 oz) cans evaporated milk
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  1. Arrange hash browns in an even layer in the bottom of a greased 9X13 pan
  2. Sprinkle with cheese, sausage and green onion: set aside
  3. Combine eggs, milk, salt and pepper: blend well
  4. Pour over hash brown mixture, cover and refrigerate for several hours, or overnight
  5. Bake, uncovered at 350 degrees until the center is set: 40 to 50 minutes if chilled. 50 to 60 minutes if chilled overnight.

Turkey Parmigiana Sliders

Serves: 4
Serving Suggestions:  Italian Salad
Source:  Full Bellies, Happy Kids Blog

  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 4 slices mozzarella cheese, each slice cut into quarters
  • 1/4 cup pasta sauce - homemade or store bought
  • 1/2 cup shredded romaine lettuce
  • 12 dinner rolls, split and toasted (I used Whole Wheat Hawaiian rolls, nice and sweet)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a bowl combine the ground turkey, all the spices, cheese and salt & pepper. Form large meatballs and flatten to create small patties.
  3. Brown each patty on both sides in a skillet with a little oil and transfer the patties to a baking sheet.
  4. Top all browned patties with a teaspoon of pasta sauce and a couple slices of cheese.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for a few minutes until cheese begins to melt.
  6. While the patties are baking, spread a teaspoon of pasta sauce on the bottoms of the split dinner rolls.
  7. Transfer each patty onto the bottoms of the rolls and top the burgers with shredded lettuce and the tops of the dinner rolls. Serve immediately.

P. F. Chang's Mongolian Beef

Serves: 4
Suggestions: Fried Rice
Source: Food 

  1. Make the sauce by heating 2 tsp of vegetable oil in a medium saucepan over med/low heat.
  2. Don't get the oil too hot.
  3. Add ginger and garlic to the pan and quickly add the soy sauce and water before the garlic scorches.
  4. Dissolve the brown sugar in the sauce, then raise the heat to about medium and boil the sauce for 2-3 minutes or until the sauce thickens.
  5. Remove it from the heat.
  6. Slice the flank steak against the grain into 1/4" thick bite-size slices.
  7. Tilt the blade of your knife at about a forty five degree angle to the top of the steak so that you get wider cuts.
  8. Dip the steak pieces into the cornstarch to apply a very thin dusting to both sides of each piece of beef.
  9. Let the beef sit for about 10 minutes so that the cornstarch sticks.
  10. As the beef sits, heat up one cup of oil in a wok (you may also use a skillet for this step as long as the beef will be mostly covered with oil).
  11. Heat the oil over medium heat until it's nice and hot, but not smoking.
  12. Add the beef to the oil and sauté for just two minutes, or until the beef just begins to darken on the edges.
  13. You don't need a thorough cooking here since the beef is going to go back on the heat later.
  14. Stir the meat around a little so that it cooks evenly.
  15. After a couple minutes, use a large slotted spoon to take the meat out and onto paper towels, then pour the oil out of the wok or skillet.
  16. Put the pan back over the heat, dump the meat back into it and simmer for one minute.
  17. Add the sauce, cook for one minute while stirring, then add all the green onions.
  18. Cook for one more minute, then remove the beef and onions with tongs or a slotted spoon to a serving plate.
  19. Leave the excess sauce behind in the pan.

Crispy Onion Chicken

Serves: 4
Serving Suggestions: Mashed Potatoes, Salad, Roasted Vegetables
Source:  Full Bellies, Happy Kids Blog

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 can (6 ounces) cheddar or original french-fried onions, crushed
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
  1. In a shallow bowl, combine the butter, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic salt and pepper. In another shallow bowl, add 1/2 cup-fried onions. Dip chicken in the butter mixture, then coat with onions.
  2. Place in a greased 9-in. square baking pan. Top with remaining onions; drizzle with any remaining butter mixture. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until chicken juices run clear. Yield: 4 servings.

Spicy Pasta and Sausage Bake

Serves: 4 - 6
Suggestions: Salad & crusty bread
Source:  Lynn's Kitchen Adventures
  • 1 lb sausage
  • 1 onion, chopped finely
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cans (14 ounce) chicken broth
  • 1 (10 ounce) can rotel tomatoes, or tomatoes with green chilies
  • ½ cup cream
  • 1 lb penne pasta ( I used gluten free)
  • 2 cups shredded, colby jack cheese ( you could use just about any cheese for this)
  1. In a large pan cook sausage and onion until the sausage is browned and the onion is tender. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute.
  2. Stir in broth, tomatoes, cream, and pasta. Bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover pan. Simmer covered for about 15 minutes or until pasta is tender.
  4. Stir in cheese until melted, and serve.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Meal Plan: 3/20

Welcome a new week.  I hope this week brings you happiness.

Ok...Ok...yes I'm normal and yes I have recipes scheduled for each day, but that doesn't mean the schedule always works.  So, I had planned on making shepards pie, but because of the amount of time it takes to make, I had planned on making it over the weekend.  Saturday came and we did our taxes and no time to make it.  Then I planned on making it on Sunday and we went to the mall in hopes of buying an Ipad 2, but no diced.  1st) they were sold out - figures and 2nd) it really isn't waht I was looking for.  I was hoping to use it to design, but everyone keeps telling me it wont work...So, it is now 4pm on Sunday - I'm just now getting the blog up and haven't even been to the grocery store for this week.  So, no go for Shepard's pie - if you made one, please let me know how it was. 

Grocery List

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

Goat Cheese-Stuffed Turkey Burgers with Roasted Red Pepper Relish

Servings:  6
Suggestions: Fries, French Fries,  Roasted Vegis
Source: Epicurious
  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground turkey
  • 6 tablespoons fresh breadcrumbs
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons soft fresh goat cheese (such as Montrachet)
  • 6 whole wheat, hamburger buns
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 7-ounce jars roasted sweet red peppers, rinsed, drained, patted dry, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onions
  • 3 teaspoons finely chopped garlic
For Burgers:
Combine turkey, breadcrumbs, lemon juice, lemon peel, thyme, salt and pepper in large bowl. Mix well. Divide turkey mixture into 6 equal portions. Form 1 portion into two 4-inch diameter patties. Place 1 tablespoon goat cheese atop 1 turkey patty; place second patty atop cheese. Seal patties at edges to enclose cheese. Repeat with remaining 5 portions. (Can be prepared 4 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)
Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Grill burgers until cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. Grill hamburger buns, cut side down, until lightly toasted, about 1 minute. Place turkey burgers on bottom half of buns. Top burgers with Roasted Red Pepper Relish, then bun tops and serve.
For Relish:
Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add red peppers and sauté 2 minutes. Add onions and garlic. Cook until onions are tender, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes.
Mix vinegar and sugar in small bowl until sugar dissolves. Stir vinegar mixture into red peppers. Mix in mustard and cayenne pepper. Season with salt. Continue cooking relish until all liquid has evaporated, stirring frequently, about 6 minutes. Cool to room temperature. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before using.) Makes about 2 cups.

Note:  I'm going to try to find piquillo peppers & use them instead of the roasted red peppers.  We have visited a tapas restaurant that has a goat cheese stuffed piquillo peppers and they are amazing! 

Sour Cream Noodle Bake

Servings: 8
Suggestions:  Salad, Crusty Bread
Source:  The Pioneer Woman

  • 1-¼ pound Ground Chuck
  • 1 can 15-ounces Tomato Sauce
  • ½ teaspoons Salt
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 8 ounces, weight Egg Noodles
  • ½ cups Sour Cream
  • 1-¼ cup Small Curd Cottage Cheese
  • ½ cups Sliced Green Onions (less To Taste)
  • 1 cup Grated Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  2. Brown ground chuck in a large skillet. Drain fat, then add tomato sauce. 1/2 teaspoon salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Stir, then simmer while you prepare the other ingredients. 
  3. Cook egg noodles until al dente. Drain and set aside. 
  4. In a medium bowl, combine sour cream and cottage cheese. Add plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Add to noodles and stir. Add green onions and stir. 
  5. To assemble, add half of the noodles to a baking dish. Top with half the meat mixture, then sprinkle on half the grated cheddar. Repeat with noodles, meat, then a final layer of cheese. Bake for 20 minutes, or until all cheese is melted.

Chicken or Steak with Balsamic BBQ Sauce

Servings: 4
Suggestions:  Orzo Pasta Salad
Source: Giada @ Food Network

For the Balsamic BBQ sauce:

  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the chicken or steak:

  • 4 pieces chicken (any combination of breast or leg-and-thigh pieces) or 4 pieces of New York strip or Club strip steak
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan and stir until all the ingredients are incorporated and the mixture is smooth. Simmer over medium heat until reduced by 1/3, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  1. Place a grill pan over medium heat or preheat a gas or charcoal grill. Season the meat with salt and pepper. Lightly coat with some of the BBQ sauce using a pastry brush. Place the meat on the grill. Place the remaining BBQ sauce, still in the small saucepan, over low heat or on the edge of a gas or charcoal grill and allow to gently simmer while the meat cooks.
  2. Cook the chicken about 8 minutes per side. Cook the steaks starting at about 4 minutes per side until a meat thermometer reads the desired temperature, 120 degrees F for medium rare, 135 degrees F for medium (about 6 minutes per side), 155 degrees F for well done (about 9 minutes per side). Continually brush the meat with BBQ sauce every few minutes. Remove the meat from the grill and let rest for at least 5 minutes. Serve with the heated BBQ sauce alongside.
  3. Alternately, the chicken can be baked in the oven. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the chicken skin side up in a baking dish and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the baking dish from the oven and spoon the BBQ sauce all over the top of the chicken. Return the baking dish to the oven and bake for another 15 minutes.

Creamy Chicken Fajitas

Servings:  4
Suggestions:  Mexican Rice, Black Beans
Source:  Kraft/Philly

  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
  • 1 cup thin onion slices and green pepper strips
  • 1 tub PHILADELPHIA Santa Fe Blend Cooking Creme
  • 8 flour tortillas (6 inch), warmed
  • 1 cup KRAFT Mexican Style Finely Shredded Four Cheese

  1. Cook chicken and vegetables in large nonstick skillet on medium heat 6 to 7 min. or until chicken is done.
  2. Add cooking creme; cook and stir 2 min.
  3. Spoon down centers of tortillas; top with shredded cheese. Fold in half.

Super Party Brat Sub Hoagie

Servings: 6
Serving Suggestions:  chips, salad, pasta salad, pasta salad
Source:  Johnsville

  • 1 pkg  (19.76 oz.) Johnsonville® Original Bratwurst
  • 1 medium sweet red pepper, sliced
  • 1 medium yellow pepper, sliced
  • 1 medium green pepper, sliced
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 loaf (1 lb.) French bread

  1. Grill brats according to package directions. When cool enough to handle, cut into ¼-in. bias slices. 
  2. In a skillet, sauté peppers and onion in oil until tender; set aside. 
  3. Slice French bread lengthwise and transfer to a baking sheet. Layer bottom of bread bottom with brats, peppers mixture and provolone cheese. 
  4. Place top of bread on hoagie and bake at 350°F for 10 minutes or until heated through. Cut hoagie and serve hot.

Flank Steak Stir-Fry with Asparagus and Red Pepper

Servings: 4
Suggestions:  crab rangoon, potstickers
Source: Simply Recipes
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/2 lb asparagus, trimmed, cut on the diagonal into 1 1/2 inch lengths (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 lb of flank steak, sliced in half lengthwise (along the grain) and then cut into thin strips, 2 inches long and 1/4 inch wide (put the steak in the freezer for 15 minutes before slicing to make it easier to slice)
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, de-ribbed, and cut into thin strips 2 inches long and 1/4 inch wide
  • 2 teaspoons of cornstarch dissolved into 3 Tablespoons of water
All Purpose Stir Fry Sauce
  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce (use gluten-free soy sauce for gluten-free version)
  • 1 tsp finely chopped, peeled, fresh ginger
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced
  • 1 green onion, including green tops, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp chili oil


  1. While you are chopping the ingredients in preparation, bring a small saucepan of water to boil. Parboil the asparagus pieces for 2 minutes, drain, rinse in cold water, drain, and set aside. If you are planning to serve this dish with rice, in a separate pan, prepare 2 cups of white rice, following the instructions on the rice package.
  2. Prepare the All Purpose Stir Fry Sauce by combining the ingredients in a small dish, and set aside.
  3. Stir-fry the asparagus in a wok (or a thick-bottomed pan with at least 2" sides that can take high heat) in 1 Tbsp of oil, on high heat, for about 2 minutes until lightly browned. Remove asparagus from pan and set aside.
  4. Add another 1 Tbsp of oil to the pan and stir fry the beef strips, in 2 batches, for 2-3 minutes until browned but still pink inside. Return the first batch of beef to the pan and add the bell pepper. Stir and toss over high heat until just beginning to wilt, 1-2 minutes.Quickly stir the cornstarch liquid and add it to the pan along with the stir fry sauce. Cook until sauce thickens, 1-2 minutes. Return the asparagus to the pan, toss to evenly coat and serve with steamed white rice (unless you are going low-carb, in which case, leave out the rice).

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Meal Plan: 3/13 - 3/19

Welcome a new week.  I hope this week brings you happiness.

My sister is coming to visit us.  Andrew is really looking for a few fun filled days with his Aunt Erika.  Mark & I are looking forward to her visit also!  We were thinking about visiting the aquarium over near Cincinnati.  Unfortunately, I believe this is out of the question.  The Ohio River is flooding low areas.  At one point in Louisville, it is almost touching the bottom of the exit ramp from Highway 64.  In Cincinnati, a restaurant barge was swept away, thankfully everyone is safe! 

I have a few new dishes for you this week.  Mark found the yummy looking recipe to Melissa's Shepard's Pie.  I always thought it looked yucky (a typical kids term).  This one actually looks good.  I tend not to eat meatballs, because of a fear of chocking on them (I did as a child).  This recipe sounds yummy, I think I'll mix some Colby jack cheese in these. 

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

Turkey & Bacon Pesto Panini

Serves:  1

Suggestions:  salad
Source: Cheeky Kitchen

  • 1/2 pound thickly carved oven-roasted turkey breast
  • 8 slices bacon, cooked until crispy
  • 1/4 cup homemade Lemon Pesto Mayonnaise
  • 4 ciabatta rolls or 8 thick slices of french bread

  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 1/4 tablespoons pine nuts or raw walnuts
  • juice of 1/4 fresh lemon
  • 1/4 cup shredded parmesan or asagio cheese
  • salt & pepper to taste

  1. Your favorite toppings from this list (optional): tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, asparagus spears, artichoke hearts, fresh spinach leaves. Spread 1 tablespoon of the mayonnaise on the rolls. Between the rolls (or between two slices of french bread), layer the turkey, two bacon slices, and any (or non) of your favorite toppings. Lightly butter the top and bottom of each roll. Cook in a panini press, or grill as you would grilled cheese on a standard skillet, heated to medium heat.

  1. Place all ingredients in a mini food processor or blender. Blend until pureed.

Cajun Chicken with Rice

Prep: 10 minutes  |  Cook: 25 minutes  |  Stand: 5 minutes
Serves: 6
Serving Suggestions: Side Salad
Source: Campbells
  •  6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • Cajun seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) Campbell's® Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup (Regular or 98% Fat Free)
  • 1 box (about 6 ounces) fast cook seasoned long-grain and wild rice mix
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen broccoli florets or frozen peas and carrots
  • 1 cup grated Cheddar cheese (about 4 ounces)
  1. Season the chicken with the Cajun seasoning.  Heat the oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet.  Add the chicken and cook for 10 minutes or until well browned on both sides.  Remove the chicken from the skillet.
  2. Add the water and soup to the skillet.  Stir in the rice and broccoli and heat to a boil.  Return the chicken to the skillet.  Reduce the heat to low.  Cover and cook for 5 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.  Top with the cheese.  Cover and cook until the cheese is melted.  Let stand, covered, for 5 minutes.

BBQ Meatballs

 |   | 
Serving Suggestions:  Mashed Potatoes, Salad/Broccoli Slaw
Recipe Courtesy of :   The Pioneer Woman

  • 1-½ pound Ground Beef
  • ¾ cups Oats
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 3 Tablespoons Very Finely Minced Onion
  • 1-½ teaspoon Salt
  • Plenty Of Ground Black Pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup All-Purpose Flour (coating For Frozen Meatballs)
  • Canola Oil
  • 1 cup Ketchup
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire
  • 4 Tablespoons (to 6 Tablespoons) Onion
  • 1 dash Tabasco

Preparation Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine all meatball ingredients. Roll into medium-small balls and place on a cookie sheet. Place sheet in freezer for five minutes.
  3. After 5 minutes, remove meatballs from freezer and immediately dredge in unseasoned flour.
  4. Brown meatballs in canola oil until just brown. Place into a baking dish.
  5. Combine all sauce ingredients. Pour over meatballs and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Serve with egg noodles, mashed potatoes, or crusty French bread.

Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce

Serves: 8
Suggestions:  add grilled chicken, salad, crusty bread with olive oil & roasted garlic
Source: The Pioneer Woman
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 whole Medium Onion, Finely Diced
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 cans (15 Ounce Each) Tomato Sauce Or Marinara Sauce
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste
  • Dash Of Sugar (more To Taste)
  • 1 cup Heavy Cream
  • Grated Parmesan Or Romano Cheese, To Taste
  • Fresh Basil, Chopped
  • 1-½ pound Fettuccine
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of pasta water.
  2. Heat butter and oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and saute for a minute or so. Pour in tomato sauce and add salt, pepper, and sugar to taste. Stir and cook over low heat for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in cream. Add cheese to taste, then check seasonings. Stir in pasta and chopped basil and serve immediately. (Thin with pasta water before adding basil if needed.)

Sixteen Minute Beef and Bean Burritos

Suggestions:  Rice, Black Beans, Corn Casserole
  • 2 pounds Ground Beef
  • ½ whole Medium Onion
  • 1 can (7 Ounce) Mexican Tomato Sauce Or Enchilada Sauce
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste
  • Cumin, Oregano, Chili Powder, Garlic To Taste
  • 1 can (28 Ounce) Refried Beans
  • ¾ cups Grated Cheddar Cheese
  • 12 whole Burrito-sized Flour Tortillas
  • Extra Grated Cheese, For Sprinkling
  • Extra Sauce, For Drizzling
  • Cilantro Leaves, Optional
  • Optional Filling Ingredients: Mexican Rice, Sour Cream, Guacamole, Green Chilies, Pico De Gallo
  1. Brown ground beef with onion and season to taste. Pour in sauce and simmer over low heat. Add water if mixture gets too dry.
  2. Heat refried beans in a saucepan. Add cheese and stir in till melted. Keep warm.
  3. Heat tortillas in microwave for one minute.
  4. Spread a small amount of beans on each tortilla. Add meat. Fold over ends, then roll up. Place two burritos on a microwave-safe plate. Drizzle red sauce over the top and sprinkle with more grated cheddar. Microwave for one minute, or until cheese is melted and burritos are very hot. Serve immediately.
  5. OPTIONAL: Fill burritos with any optional ingredients you like. (I love them full, but my boys like them very plain.)

Shepherd's Pie

Serves: 6-8 people
Prep: 20 min  |  Cook: 1 hr 50 min
Recipe courtesy: Melissa d'Arabian of Food Network

Garlicky Potato Topping:

  • 4 large russet potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 10 whole garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 4 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Nonstick cooking spray


  • 4 slices bacon, cut into thin strips
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus 1/2 teaspoon
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 to 3 medium carrots, roughly chopped, (about 1 cup)
  • 3/4 cups frozen peas, thawed
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle light or dark beer
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 1 teaspoon finely minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated Swiss or Cheddar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves

  1. Prepare potato topping: In a large saucepan add the potatoes and garlic and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook, uncovered, until the potatoes are fork-tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain. Transfer the potatoes and garlic to a large bowl. Add the sour cream, 1/4 cup of the broth, butter, salt and pepper, and beat on low speed with a hand mixer until the potatoes are light and fluffy, about 1 to 2 minutes. If the mixture is too dry, add the remaining 1/4 cup broth. Do not overmix. Cover and set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 10-inch round baking dish with nonstick spray.
  3. Prepare filling: Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally until browned and almost crisp, about 7 to 8 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate; set aside.
  4. Add the oil to the drippings in the skillet and put over medium heat. Add the onions and 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are very soft and just beginning to brown, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle in the sugar, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions begin to caramelize, about 3 minutes. Stir in the beef and cook, stirring occasionally, over medium-high heat, until the beef begins to brown, about 7 minutes. Add the carrots, peas, and garlic and cook, stirring, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and flour and cook, stirring, until well blended, about 2 minutes. Add the beer, bring to a boil and boil for 3 minutes. Cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, and scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan, about 2 minutes Add the cooked bacon, the broth, rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and the pepper, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the sauce thickens, about 15 minutes.
  5. Spoon the meat mixture into the prepared baking dish. Spread the potato topping evenly over the beef mixture. Bake until the filling is hot, the topping is lightly browned and the edges are bubbly, about 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the cheese. Return to the oven and bake for 10 more minutes. Let rest out of the oven for 10 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Meal Plan: 3/6 - 3/12

Welcome a new week.  I hope this week brings you happiness. 

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

Gouda-Stuffed Chicken (Pork) Recipe

Serves: 4
Source: Taste of Home

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves (6 ounces each) or Pork
  • 2 ounces smoked Gouda cheese, cut into thin pieces
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup apple cider or unsweetened apple juice
  • 2 large tart apples, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  1. Cut a slit lengthwise through the thickest part of each chicken breast; fill with cheese. In a shallow bowl, combine the flour, salt and pepper. Dip chicken in flour mixture on both sides; shake off excess.
  2. In a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, cook chicken in 1-1/2 teaspoons oil over medium heat for 8-10 minutes on each side or until juices run clear. Remove and keep warm.
  3. In the same skillet, saute garlic in remaining oil for 30 seconds. Add broth and cider, stirring to loosen browned bits. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 12-14 minutes or until mixture is reduced to about 1 cup.
  4. Stir in apples and honey; return to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 5-7 minutes or until apples are crisp-tender. Serve with chicken.
Note: We are going to use this recipe with Pork, but it is also good with chicken.

BBQ Shredded Chicken and Caramelized Red Onion Ranch Spaghetti

Serves: 6
Source: Picky-Palate 
  • 1 lb thin spaghetti noodles
  • 4 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 large red onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons dry Ranch Dressing Mix
  • 3/4 Cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • Shredded BBQ Chicken (TIP: buy a prepared chicken, shred & add BBQ sauce)
  1. Cook spaghetti noodles according to package directions; drain and rinse with cold water to stop cooking.  
  2. Place olive oil into a large pot over medium heat.  Saute red onions until softened and golden.  
  3. Add cooked spaghetti to onions; mix and add dry Ranch Dressing seasoning and cilantro leaves. 
  4. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper to taste.  Place noodles onto serving plates and top with warm shredded BBQ chicken.  Garnish with cilantro leaf and serve with garlic bread & salad.

Chimchurri Burgers

We will use leftover chimchurri sauce& a slice of gouda to our turkey burgers...MMMMM

Grilled Pepper, Onion, and Sausage Calzones

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1/2 calzone and 5 1/2 teaspoons sauce)
Serve Suggestions: Salad
Source: Cooking Light
  • 1  prepared pizza dough
  • 1  Vidalia or other sweet onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices 
  • 1  red bell pepper, quartered
  • 1  yellow bell pepper, quartered
  • Cooking spray
  • 1  pound  hot Italian turkey sausage links
  • 1 3/4  cups pizza sauce (Tip: I use leftover spaghetti sauce that I've frozen)
  • 1 1/3  cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

  1. Prepare grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Coat onion slices and bell pepper pieces with cooking spray. Place vegetables and sausages on a grill rack coated with cooking spray. Grill vegetables 4 minutes on each side or until browned; grill sausages 8 minutes or until done, turning occasionally to brown on all sides. Remove vegetables and sausages from grill; cool slightly. Cut onion slices in half; cut bell pepper pieces into 1/2-inch strips. Cut sausages diagonally into thin slices.
  3. Preheat oven to 500°
  4. Place dough on a lightly floured surface; divide dough into 4 equal portions. Roll each portion into a 9 x 5-inch rectangle. Spread 1/4 cup New York-Style Pizza Sauce evenly over each rectangle, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Arrange sausage evenly over half of each rectangle; top evenly with onion and bell peppers. Sprinkle each calzone with 1/3 cup cheese. Fold other half of dough over filling; press edges together with a fork to seal.
  5. Place calzones on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Coat calzones with cooking spray. Bake at 500° for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven; let stand 5 minutes. Cut each calzone in half; serve with remaining New York-Style Pizza Sauce.
Note: I've modified the recipe with using a prepared pizza crust to save time. 

Flank Steak with Chimichurri

Serves: 4 - 6
Source: Epicurious
Serving Suggestions:  Syrah or Pinot Noir wine
  • 1 1/2 pounds trimmed flank steak
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh cilantro
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Pat steak dry. Stir together 1 teaspoon salt, cumin, coriander, and pepper in a small bowl and rub mixture onto both sides of steak. Broil steak on a broiler pan about 4 inches from heat 6 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let stand 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, with motor running, add garlic to a food processor and finely chop. Add cilantro, parsley, vinegar, oil, cayenne, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, then pulse until herbs are finely chopped.
  4. Holding a knife at a 45-degree angle, thinly slice steak. Serve with sauce.

Mexi-Chicken Campanelle Dinner

  • 1 lb campanelle pasta (or your favorite pasta)
  • 1/4 teaspoon Ancho Chile Pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Sicilian Sea Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1 1/2 lbs chicken breast with rib meat
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped white onion
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 cup finely chopped sweet peppers
  • 1 1/2 cups Salsa Verde, mild
  • 1 cup petite diced tomatoes from can
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions, drain and run under cold water to stop cooking.
  3. Place ancho pepper, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper into a small bowl, stirring to combine.  Sprinkle over both sides of chicken, then rub.  Heat 2 tablespoons oil in Dutch oven or large pot over medium heat.  Add chicken cooking until browned on both sides, about 6 minutes each side.  Place pot in oven and continue cooking for 25 minutes.
  4. While chicken is cooking heat 2 tablespoons oil in another Dutch oven or medium pot over medium heat.  Add onions, garlic and sweet peppers, cooking and stirring until tender, about 5 minutes.  Add salsa, tomatoes, cream and cilantro, stirring to combine.  Add cooled pasta back to original large pot and pour sauce over top, stirring to combine. Reduce heat to low, stirring often.
  5. When chicken is cooked through, remove and let rest for 5 minutes.  Cut into slices.  Spoon pasta in serving bowls and top with slices of chicken breast.  Garnish with a sprig of cilantro if desired & salad.
Serves: 6
Source: Picky Palate