Sunday, January 15, 2017

Apple Crisp Cookie Cups

Nina made these for my girls and they were delicious!  Thanks to Delish for a great recipe!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/4 c. brown sugar (divided)
  • 3/4 c. granulated sugar (divided)
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened (plus more for cooking apples)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 c. rolled oats
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 6 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and finely chopped
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • Caramel sauce, for serving

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine butter, 1/2 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup brown sugar. Beat with hand mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and mix until evenly combined. Add flour, oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt and stir until just combined.
  3. Spray 2 regular sized muffin tins with cooking spray. Using a medium ice cream scoop, scoop dough into muffin tins, press down with a spoon to create cups. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the cookie cups are golden brown and set. (Don’t worry if the cookie cup centers rise!)
  4. While the cookies are still warm, make the cups. Spray the bottom of a small shot glass with cooking spray and press the shot glass down into the center of each cookie to create cups. Let cool in pan for 15 minutes, then transfer to wire cooling racks.
  5. Meanwhile, melt about 2 tablespoons butter in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until beginning to brown. Add apples and sauté until beginning to soften. Add the remaining sugars, nutmeg, cinnamon and cornstarch and cook until soft and caramelized.
  6. Spoon the apple filling into the cups. Drizzle with caramel and serve warm or at room temperature.

Soaked Pumpkin Pancakes

I found this recipe when looking for a healthy pumpkin pancake recipe.  Many thanks to Nourishing Gourmet for this great recipe!
  • 2½ cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups whole milk, coconut milk, kefir, or buttermilk - if using a non-fermented liquid such as coconut milk, add in 2 tablespoons of raw apple cider vinegar, water kefir, or other live culture liquid (I used raw whole milk)
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoons salt
  • Apple Cider Syrup (optional)
  • Butter (optional)
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. In a large glass bowl, mix your flour, melted butter and milk. Cover with a towel and leave on the counter for 12- 24 hours. (I usually do this the night before.)
  2. In the morning in a medium-sized bowl whip the pumpkin puree, eggs, coconut sugar, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and salt together.
  3. Pour the mixture into the flour that was soaked over night. Stir until the batter is smooth.
  4. Heat a skillet (I prefer cast iron) over medium heat. You will know it is ready if you sprinkle a couple droplets of water on the pan and they sizzle.
  5. Pour batter onto the skillet to create the size pancakes you desire. I prefer about 4 inches in circumference, ¼ of an inch thick.
  6. Cook until bubbles start to appear. Flip over and cook for another 30 seconds to 1 minute.
  7. Serve fresh off the skillet or place in a baking dish in a warm oven.
  8. Top with butter and apple cider syrup.

Creamed Turkey Over Biscuits






I found this recipe when looking for a way to use up leftover Thanksgiving turkey.  It is such delicious comfort food!  It would also be yummy with chicken.  Many thanks to Frugal Foodie Mama for the recipe!

For the buttermilk biscuits
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 8 tablespoons of unsalted butter, chilled & cubed
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk (I did not have any, so added 1 tbsp of vinegar to a measuring cup & filled it with milk to the 3/4 line. Let it sit for 5 minutes & voila!)
For the creamed turkey
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1/2 cup chicken or turkey broth
  • 1 1/2 cups half 'n half
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 2 cups of cooked turkey, chopped
  • Leftover or fresh made mashed potatoes
Instructions
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, & salt. Add in the cubed butter and cut into the flour mixture with a pastry blender or two forks until the mixture is crumbly.
Pour in the buttermilk and mix with a wooden spoon until just combined.

Turn the biscuit dough out onto a well floured surface & roll out to about 1/2 inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter or the top of a glass cut out circles of dough. Place at least an inch apart on the prepared baking sheet. I was able to cut out about 10 biscuits from this recipe.

Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown.
Allow to cool to warm.

While the biscuits are cooling, prepare the creamed turkey.
In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Once melted, whisk in the flour and continue to whisk and cook for 1-2 minutes.
Pour in the half 'n half and broth. Season with the salt & pepper. Continue to heat, whisking every minute or so for about 5 minutes.
Dump in the chopped turkey and stir. Heat another 3-4 minutes or until the turkey is heated through and the sauce has thickened.

To serve, cut a biscuit in half and place on a plate. Add a nice heaping scoop of reheated leftover mashed potatoes. Generously ladle the creamed turkey over top of the biscuit and mashed potatoes

Dad's unbeatable Buttermilk Pancakes

These are truly the best pancakes in the world an a very simple recipe!  My girls talk him into putting sprinkles and chocolate chips on them but I much prefer them with just a bunch of butter and syrup :)

1 Cup A/P Flour
1 Tbs Sugar
1 tsp  Baking Soda
1 tsp  Baking Powder

1 Egg
1 Cup Buttermilk
2 Tbs Oil  (30ml) (1/8 Cup)

Mix the dry separate from the liquid. Don't put in the oil until everything else is mixed together.  Fry on a hot griddle.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Condensed Cheddar Cheese Soup

I use this recipe all the time in soups and over potatoes or noodles!  Thanks, Meal Planning With Connie

Condensed Cheddar Cheese Soup Substitute

3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
salt, to taste

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat; add flour and whisk until smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat; gradually add milk, whisking to keep smooth. Return to heat and bring to a gentle boil, whisking constantly until thickened. Add cheese and stir until melted. Add salt.

Homemade Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup

This makes about 2 cans of cream of chicken soup!   Thanks, Tammy's Recipes!

Ingredients: 
1 1/2 cups chicken broth*
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/4 teaspoon onion powder**
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder***
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt (or less; taste to test)
1/4 teaspoon parsley
dash of paprika
1 1/2 cups milk
3/4 cup flour
Instructions: 
1. In medium-sized saucepan, boil chicken broth, 1/2 cup of the milk, and the seasonings for a minute or two (longer if using fresh onions or garlic).
2. In a bowl, whisk together the remaining 1 cup of milk and flour. Add to boiling mixture and continue whisking briskly until mixture boils and thickens.
Additional Notes: 
*I use the broth from my oven-roasted chicken. Refrigerate broth and then take fat off the top. If you're using chicken bouillon + water for your broth, you may want to add a little extra seasonings, such as lemon pepper, extra garlic, or seasoned salt, since my broth normally has bits of those in it. You can also add bits of chicken, but if you have good rich chicken broth, you probably won't need any chicken in it.
**Or, diced onions (boil with broth for a few minutes)
***Or, fresh minced garlic (boil with broth for a few minutes)

Slow Cooker Cream Cheese Chicken Chili

Another simple and yummy soup recipe that we love from Plain Chicken Blog
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can corn, undrained
  • 1 can Rotel, undrained
  • 1 package ranch dressing mix
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 8 oz package light cream cheese
  • 2 chicken breasts

Drain and rinse black beans. Place chicken at bottom of pot, then pour out whole can of corn (undrained), rotel, and black beans. Top with seasonings and ranch mix. Stir together. Place cream cheese on top. Cover with lid and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Stir cream cheese into chili. Use 2 forks to shred chicken. Stir together and serve.

**Can place all ingredients in a freezer bag and freeze for a quick freezer meal later.**
Read more at http://www.plainchicken.com/2012/01/slow-cooker-cream-cheese-chicken-chili.html#7poA9UFypDCYTHIJ.99

Loaded Baked Potato and Chicken Casserole

This is a super easy and delicious casserole that we love from Delicious As It Looks.

Ingredients

3 - 4 medium russet potatoes, scrubbed and diced small
        (about 1.5 lbs. or 4 1/2 cups)*
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced
4 slices bacon, cooked crisp, cooled and crumbled
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
4 green onions, sliced (green parts only for low-FODMAP/low-fructose)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup heavy cream (use 1/2 cup lactose-free milk whisked with 1 tablespoon gluten-free flour for low-FODMAP)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces


Directions

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9" x 9" baking pan or casserole dish.
  2. Spread half of the diced potatoes in bottom of pan (see note below on parboiling the potatoes*). Place the diced chicken breasts evenly on top. Season chicken with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Sprinkle with half the bacon crumbles, 1/2 cup of the cheese, and half the green onions.
  3. Spread the remaining diced potatoes on top, followed by the remaining bacon, another 1/2 cup cheese, remaining green onions and another 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Pour heavy cream (or lactose-free milk and flour mixture) over top of casserole and then dot with the butter. Cover with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour. Uncover and bake another 30 minutes. In the last few minutes of baking, sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup cheddar cheese and bake until melted. Serve.

Chicken Bacon Wild Rice Soup

We love this soup from Pinch of Yum!  And it freezes pretty well, also.  I usually have to add a little milk when I warm it up again because it gets thick but it is the ultimate comfort food!

INGREDIENTS
  • 3 (10¾ oz) cans chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • ½ cup uncooked wild rice, rinsed
  • ½ cup finely chopped green onions
  • ½ cup margarine or butter
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • ⅛ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1½ cup cubed or shredded cooked chicken or turkey
  • 8 slices bacon, crisply cooked and crumbled
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pimiento
  • 2-3 tablespoons dry sherry, if desired
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. In a large saucepan, combine chicken broth and water. Add wild rice and onions. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 30-45 minutes (or until rice is tender). Once the rice is cooked, there will be some additional broth - do not drain.
  2. In a medium saucepan, melt margarine, stir in flour, salt, seasoning, and pepper. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly, until smooth and bubbly.
  3. Gradually stir in half and half with the butter/flour mixture and cook until slightly thickened, stirring constantly. Add this creamy mixture back into the saucepan with the rice/broth. Add remaining ingredients (chicken, bacon, pimiento, and sherry). Heat on low, stirring every once in a while, for at least a half an hour. Do not boil. The mixture will look thin, but the longer you heat the soup, the more the flavors marry and the more it will thicken. This soup is best served after gently heating for an extended period of time (even a few hours) or the next day! For extra flavor, add more poultry seasoning and/or bacon.

Corn and Cheese Chowder

We got this recipe from the amazing Pioneer Woman and it is so good that I had to type it out so I'll never lose it (I'm making my daughters a cookbook from this blog.) 


  • 4 Tablespoons 1/2 Stick Butter
  • 1 whole Onion, Chopped
  • 3 slices Bacon, Cut Into Pieces
  • 3 whole Bell Peppers, Finely Diced (red, Yellow, Orange)
  • 5 ears Corn, Kernels Sliced Off
  • 1/4 cup All-purpose Flour
  • 3 cups Chicken Stock Or Broth
  • 2 cups Half-and-half
  • 1 cup (heaping) Grated Monterey Jack
  • 1 cup (heaping) Pepper Jack
  • 1/3 cup Sliced Green Onions
  • Bread Bowls

In a large pot, melt butter over medium-high heat. Cook onions for a couple of minutes. Add bacon and cook for another minute or so, then add diced bell peppers and cook for a couple of minutes. Finally, add corn and cook for a minute. 

Sprinkle flour evenly over the top and stir to combine. Pour in broth and stir well. Allow this to thicken for 3 or 4 minutes, then reduce heat to low. Stir in half-and-half, then cover and allow to simmer/thicken for 15 minutes or so. 

Stir in cheeses and green onions. When cheese is melted and the soup is hot, check seasonings. Add salt and pepper as needed. 

Ladle into hollowed out boules and serve immediately

Friday, January 29, 2016

Home-made soaked crackers

Since my two big girls started attending school, I was determined that I would not resort to giving them processed foods for lunches and snacks.  This was one recipe I found that they enjoyed.  I usually double it or triple it.  The trick is getting it rolled thinly enough to crunch like a cracker.  It was difficult (time consuming) to cut and place all the tiny crackers on my baking pans.  4 girls can eat one recipe of this in no time!  I had to find a quicker way.  I finally resorted to rolling them out on a baking mat that could be placed in the oven and used for cooking.  I use a pizza cutter to slice them into crackers right on the same mat that I bake them!  Now it is easy to whip these up quickly!  I soak everything together the night before, then roll them out, cut them, add on the salt, and bake for 8 minutes and they are done.  If you want to see the intricate instructions and great pictures, please visit this website where I found the original recipe.

  • 1 ¼ cups flour
  • 1 ½ Tbs honey (or sugar)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • 4 Tbs oil
  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ tsp vanilla
  • salt for topping
Directions:  Blend dry ingredients (except topping salt).  Cut in butter and blend until evenly mixed.  Combine the water, honey and vanilla.  Add to flour mixture and blend until smooth.  Divide the dough into 4 pieces and roll out and cut into crackers.  Bake at 400 degrees for 5-10 minutes

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Homemade taco seasoning

I ran out of my taco seasoning the other day and tried this recipe. This is how I usually quadruple it and I leave out the crushed red pepper and lessen the black pepper:

4 Tbs. chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
2 tsp. paprika
2 Tbs. ground cumin
4 tsp. sea salt
2 tsp. black pepper


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Healthier Sweet and Sour Chicken

My town recently got an Aldi store and my favorite deal to get there is the pack of tri-color sweet peppers!  I've never been able to justify buying them before on a regular basis, but now I get them every time I go!  Oh how I love sweet bell peppers!  I have enjoyed making dishes using them and my husband really enjoyed this one.  I changed it a bit, as always.

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts sliced into thin strips or into chunks
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • ½ white or yellow onion, chopped
  • rice or quinoa 
sauce
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar (may sub white vinegar)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion salt*
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch + 2 tablespoon cold water

Directions: First make the sauce. Add sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, garlic powder, onion salt, and ketchup to a medium sauce pan. Stir and bring to a boil. In a small bowl whisk together the 1 tablespoon corn starch and cold water until dissolved. Add to sauce pan and stir until thickened, then reduce to low heat.  Saute chicken over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add peppers and onions. Continue to saute over medium heat until chicken is browned and cooked through. Serve over rice or quinoa with sauce poured on top.



Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Soaked Breakfast "Cereal Bars"

With my big girls starting school this year, I had to find some new healthy breakfast recipes that I could make ahead of time!  This is one that they love.  I usually double the recipe and let each child pick a filling (strawberry jam, apple butter, chocolate chips, cinnamon chips, etc).

Soaked Breakfast Bar
2 cups whole wheat flour (I use my spelt flour)
1 cup kefir, yogurt or buttermilk (I use water or milk with ACV added)
1/2 cup coconut oil or butter, melted (I used coconut oil)
1/2 cup rapadura/cane sugar (I use coconut sugar)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 – 1/2 cup jelly, jam or fruit butter
Directions: Mix flour, cultured dairy and oil.  Cover and let soak 7 – 24 hours.  The next day, Mix in remaining dough ingredients until well combined.  Spread half of the dough into the bottom of a greased 9×13 pan.  Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.  Remove from oven.  Spread an even layer of jam on top of dough.  Spread remaining dough on top.  Bake at 350 for another 25 minutes.
Cut into bars.  Place bars on a separate baking sheet, with space in between bars.  Bake another 5-10 minutes, until dough is baked through.  Allow to cool.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Chicken Parmesan

I was searching Pinterest as I made my meal plan for January and found this lovely recipe for Chicken Parmesan.  I didn't follow it exactly, but I will definitely be adding it to my meal rotation.  Instead of buying Italian breadcrumbs, I like to use Panko because it usually just contains a few real ingredients like wheat, oil, and salt.  Then I add my own Italian seasonings and garlic salt and Parmesan to give it flavor.

Ingredients:
2 lbs chicken breasts, sliced as thinly as possible
1 cup flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
3 large eggs, beaten until frothy
1 cup of my Italian Panko mix (or store bought Italian breadcrumbs)
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
oil (I use coconut oil)
1 Jar of your favorite sauce
8 oz (2 cups) shredded mozzarella cheese
noodles of choice (we prefer angel hair pasta)

Directions:  Get three bowls for dipping: In the first bowl, mix the flour, salt, and pepper.  In the second bowl, beat the eggs.  In the third bowl, mix the breadcrumbs and parmesan.  Then dip each piece of chicken in each bowl, creating an even coating of crumbs.  You can now either bake the chicken breasts for 20 min at 425 degrees or fry them in a pan first with a little bit of oil (about 2 min on each side til golden brown).  Then add a few tablespoons of your favorite marina sauce on top and cover with mozzarella cheese and bake for 10 more minutes.  Serve over your favorite pasta and enjoy!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Snow candy from Little House in the Big Woods

My girls absolutely love The Little House books and they begged to make this candy for the longest time before we finally tried it.  Now they enjoy making it even more than snow ice cream!  A few notes we learned:  My girls are unfortunately no longer a fan of molasses.  We switched the recipe to maple syrup and they loved it!  I actually only make a half recipe because it is so sweet and they don't need much (although they would eat it until they made themselves sick if I let them!)  I'm not one for measuring much, (I know, it is so bad for a recipe blogger!) but I add in a few extra pinches of brown sugar since syrup isn't as thick as molasses.  It always works for us!
Ingredients:
1 cup molasses or maple syrup
1/2 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
Directions: Fill pans of snow.  Gather fresh clean snow into the pans and leave them outside in the cold.  In a small saucepan, stir the molasses and sugar together over medium heat. Heat the mixture to just boiling, stirring frequently (around 245 degrees Fahrenheit, firm ball stage).  Test the candy by dropping a bit in a glass of cold water.  If it makes the water cloudy, it is not ready yet. Once it stays together as candy in the water, it is ready. Remove the pan from the heat and carefully pour the molasses mixture into pans of snow.  You have about 10 or 15 minutes until the molasses starts getting difficult to pour.  Put any leftovers in the freezer (or outside) still on the snow. If you store it without the snow, it will turn into goo.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

The best snow ice cream!

We had a lovely snowstorm this weekend and decided to try a different snow ice cream recipe.  My eldest daughter made the complaint that in the past her milk-based snow ice cream had gotten watery as it melted.  So we decided to try out this super rich recipe from Paula Deen.  Not the least bit healthy, but oh so good and easy!

- 8 cups of clean snow
- 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract

Just mix and enjoy! Or you can make it even sweeter like my girls and add sprinkles and mini chocolate chips

Friday, January 22, 2016

New overnight baked oatmeal recipe

I recently decided to look at some new recipes for baked oatmeal.  I wanted something soaked over night and not too sugary.  This is the recipe I decided to use from Stacy Makes Cents and it is delicious.  Since I have a family of 6, I double her recipe and as always, I do slightly change a few things, such as adding an acidic medium and a bit of whole grain flour to help break down the phytates in the oats and make the nutrients more digestible.  I also soak the dough in the oven with the light on to keep it warm instead of the fridge.

Ingredients:
4 cups rolled oats (old fashioned oats)
2 cups whole milk
Acidic medium to enhance digestion (I usually use apple cider vinegar)
1/2 cup whole grain flour
2/3 cups sweetener ( I use coconut sugar)
4 tablespoons melted coconut oil
4 eggs
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
add-ins of choice: my girls usually prefer chocolate chips, raisins, craisins, etc.

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine the oats, milk, acidic medium, and flour. Cover and stick in oven with light on overnight.
  2. In the morning, add the remaining ingredients and mix well.
  3. Pour into a greased 9x13 inch baking dish.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

New favorite recipe: Simple Steak Fajitas

I found this recipe because I had some leftover roast that did not turn out very tender that I waned to make delicious.  The original recipe is found at Walking on Sunshine.  I liked it because it was simple and seemed easy to change to my family's tastes.  If you don't have beef already cooked, her instructions will be helpful. Here is my version of steak fajitas:

Ingredients:
Cooked steak or roast in a bit of its own broth (if you have any left)
Sweet Bell Peppers
Sweet onions
taco seasoning
oil
worcestershire sauce
Other yummy seasonings (I have a delicious mango chili grinder and a garlic salt grinder that I added to kick it up a notch!)
shredded cheddar cheese
tortillas or rice
favorite toppings such as sour cream or guacamole or salsa

Directions:  You can cook all this together in one pan, but I had meat that needed to be more tender so I threw the meat in the crockpot with all the seasonings and let it cook for the afternoon.  Perfection!  I sauteed the thinly-sliced onions and peppers in the seasonings and oil right before serving because I did not want them to get over-cooked and soggy in the crockpot.  But honestly, it probably would have been fine to throw it all in the crockpot together for the afternoon.  Serve with shredded cheese in warm tortillas or over rice.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Roasted Kielbasa and Potatoes

This is a simple but filling meal I threw together last night. It doesn't take long to slice everything and throw it into the oven.

Ingredients:
Oil of choice (I used coconut oil)
Red potatoes
Kielbasa
Sweet Onion
Seasonings of choice (I used a delicious garlic salt grinder I bought from Trader Joes that contains roasted garlic, onion, parsley, and sea salt.)

Preheat oven to 450.  Melt a few heaping spoonfuls of oil in 9x13 inch pan.  Slice onions, potatoes, and kielbasa and cot with oil in pan.  Generously cover with seasonings and mix well.  Bake for at least 30 minutes, stirring often.  The longer it is baked, the better the flavor with be.  I prefer baking for an hour and stirring every 15 minutes.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Creamy Salmon Pasta

I recently had some leftover salmon and decided to stretch it into a meal for my family.  I basically just made a yummy cream sauce to go over it with some pasta.  My husband loved it so I thought I'd share.  Unfortunately, I didn't measure anything, so I'll put my estimations in parentheses :)

Ingredients:
butter (about a half a stick)
sweet onion (about half of a medium size)
sweet red pepper (about half of a medium size)
garlic (about 2 or 3 cloves)
salt (about 7 shakes)
flour (about 1/4 cup)
leftover cooked salmon (about 1 cup worth)
milk (1 1/2 cups or more if sauce is thick)
parmesan (about 1/2 cup)
pasta of choice

Directions:  Sautee onions and red pepper in butter til cooked.  Add flour and mix well.  Add milk and stir well til sauce begins to thicken.  Add parmesan and stir til mixed well.  Add salmon.  After heated, serve over hot pasta.  Can also add peas or asparagus.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Creamy Baked Spaghetti

One of the many joys of having a new baby is being able to enjoy meals  from friends and find new favorites!  My friend Lyle brought this dish to us and it was one of the best baked spaghetti recipes I had ever tasted.  I had to ask her for the recipe, and here it is:

8-12 oz. spaghetti, broken into 2 inch pieces 
3 TBSP butter, melted
1 egg, beaten
1/3 c. grated parmesan
salt & pepper
8 oz sour cream
8 oz ricotta
8 oz cottage cheese
jar of spaghetti sauce (l5 ½ oz or larger) (I used Newman’s Organic tomato basil)
1 ½ lbs hamburger
1 med. onion
½ tsp oregano
½ tsp garlic salt (or fresh garlic)
1-2 c. shredded mozzarella

Cook spaghetti and drain. Place in 9 x 13 baking dish. Stir in butter, parmesan, salt, pepper and egg until thoroughly combined. In a separate bowl, mix sour cream, ricotta and cottage cheese. Saute hamburger & onion/garlic in skillet until meat is brown. Drain. Stir in spaghetti sauce, oregano, garlic salt. Spread cottage cheese/ricotta/sour cream mixture over noodles. Top with spaghetti sauce mixture. Bake at 350 from 30 min. Sprinkle mozzarella over top and bake an additional 10 minutes. Let stand 15 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Ground Beef Pie Topped With Bacon-Twice Baked Potatoes

I got the idea for this meal from THIS recipe, but I didn't want to use all the processed ingredients.  So I came up with my own very simple recipe and my husband actually liked it!

Ingredients:
Ground Beef
Potaoes
Garlic
Salt
cream cheese or heavy cream
Butter
cheddar cheese
Cooked bacon

Directions:  Brown ground beef, place in a casserole dish.  I actually added a bit of coconut oil to make sure it stayed plenty moist.  Make mashed potatoes however you like them.  I usually boil them because it is quick and add lots of salt, butter, garlic powder, and cream.  Place mashed potatoes on top of ground beef.  Cover with cheddar cheese and bacon.  Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes til bubbly.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Extra good taco salad!

We love taco salad!  It is one of my stand-by meals for nights when I don't have much time because I usually make taco meat in bulk and then freeze it in portions perfect for one dinner.  So all I have to do it warm it up, toss the salad together, and serve!  I will admit that my girls do not like salad so I just fix them a quick fried taco instead.  THIS recipe caught my eye because it included cilantro and sweet peppers which I LOVE but have never included in my taco salad.  We liked this recipe so much that I have decided to replace my normal recipe with this one.  A couple of changes I made this time: I always buy green-leaf lettuce for salads; we just like it better than the other types.  My husband does not like cold beans, chicken, and corn, so I mixed them together, topped them with a bit of salsa and warmed them in my toaster oven before adding to the rest of the veggies.  And he does not like avocados so I reserved those for myself.  And we don't like raw onions.  I also made up my own version of the dressing because we don't like mayonnaise and I make my own taco and ranch seasonings.  I'd tell you what I did, but I never measure :)


  • Ingredients for salad:
  • 2 cups shredded chicken or taco meat
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced (I prefer a bit of each of the stoplight peppers because they are sweeter and add color!)
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed (I used my own soaked and cooked beans)
  • 1 can sweet yellow corn (or 1 cup frozen corn, thawed)
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced (I skipped this because I added a bit of salsa)
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 1 head ice berg lettuce, washed and chopped (I prefer green-leaf lettuce)
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 2 ripe avocados, diced
  • 1 cup crushed tortilla chips
  • for the dressing:
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2/3 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp ranch seasoning
  • 1 tbsp taco seasoning
  1. In a large bowl, combine all salad ingredients together, excluding the tortilla chips.
  2. In a small bowl stir all dressing ingredients together.
  3. Pour dressing over salad, starting with about half of the dressing.
  4. Toss to combine, then gradually add more dressing until it is dressed to your liking.
  5. Top with tortilla chips. Enjoy!