Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Runnin' UTE Tailgate Chili

I got this recipe from my sister - who won a chili cookoff with the original recipe!

I have tweaked it a bit so that it's a bit healthier - and so that I could rename it!! It is so freakin' good...
It's another one of those easy peasy - even your kids can do most of the work recipes (my girls are only 5 and 2!)
The ingredient list is a long one - but they are basics - you probably have all the ingredients in your house right now!!
Running UTE Tailgate Chili
1 1/2 lbs ground turkey
1 lb hot chicken sausage (italian style)
2 15 oz cans kidney beans, rinsed
2 15 oz cans black beans, rinsed
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes (with juice)
2 15 oz cans Rotel (mild with tomatoes and green chilies - with juice)
1 large yellow onion, diced
15 oz can tomato sauce
6 oz can tomato paste
4 oz can diced green chilis (or more if you'd like)
diced celery (as much as you'd like)
diced carrots (as much as you'd like)
4 cubes beef bouillon (or the equivelent)
1/4 c chili powder
1 T Worcestershire sauce
1 T minced garlic
1 T dried oregano
1 t dried basil
1 t salt
1 t pepper
1 t cayenne pepper
1 t paprika
3 t white sugar
In a large stock pot cook the ground turkey and the chicken sausage until evenly browned. Pour all of your canned items in. Add all seasonings and stir to blend. Cover and simmer over low het for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
Top with sour cream and shredded cheese!
*If you want to crank up the heat, use Rotel with tomatoes and green chilis instead of diced tomatoes

Monday, February 22, 2010

New take on Potatoes

I have to give the credit for this one to my friend Victoria, it is her creation.
4-5 Large Red Idaho Potatoes
Bacon Crumbles
Yellow onion
EVOO (Olive oil)
Spread foil out onto a large, deep cookie/baking sheet. Cut up onion and spread over foil. Cube potatoes into chunks about 1-2 inches in size.(smaller for less baking time). Drizzle olive oil over potatoes, you want them coated but not swimming in it. Salt and pepper and add Rosemary. Use hands to mix this together to make sure everything is coated and seasoned. Sprinkle generously Bacon on top of potatoes. Place another sheet of foil on top of potatoes and wrap the bottom and top foils closed. I cooked mine for about an hour and 15 min. at 400 degrees but I had rather large chunks of potatoes. **I checked them about every half hour though. You don't want to burn them. You may want to decrease the time if you are doing smaller potatoes. Cook until Potatoes are soft. Next time I think I will sprinkle cheese over the top of it when I am done with the no dairy diet. Yummy even without it though!

Pesto Presto Italian Flag Chicken

I made Rachael Ray's Pesto Presto Italian Flag Chicken the other night and as RR says - it was Yummo. I made some adjustments b/c of the ingredients I had/didn't have.

She has you make your own pesto (the first 4 ingredients listed) and I used prepared pesto (one of my favorite cheats)
The Boursin cheese comes in 6 oz. rounds - FYI
After cooking the chicken - I ended up taking out about 1/2 of the pesto cheese mixture out of the middle. Since I used prepared pesto and didn't really have a measurement to go by - this was most likely my mistake. With that said - once I removed the excess pesto mixture - it was delish!
I served this with Char's Roasted Potatoes - if you haven't made those - you gotta! They rock!

Pesto Presto Italian Flag Chicken
3 tablespoons pine nuts
8-10 leaves basil, about a half a cup
1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves, a handful
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, a couple of handfuls
1 5.4 ounce round of Boursin garlic and herb soft cheese
4 tablespoons EVOO - Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and pepper
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
12 slices 1/2 inch thick of vine ripe tomato, 3 medium tomatoes

Preheat oven to 450ºF. In a small pan over medium heat lightly toast the nuts then cool.
In the bowl of a food processor, combine the basil, parsley, pine nuts, Boursin cheese, 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano (about a handful), some salt and pepper. Process into a smooth paste. Reserve.
Butterfly each of the chicken breasts and pound them out lightly in a plastic bag with a dash of water using a skillet or meat mallet. Season both sides of the chicken and divide the herb-cheese mixture between the four breasts, placing a scoop on one half of each breast. Fold the flap over to enclose the cheese mixture.
Transfer the chicken pockets to a baking sheet and shingle 3 slices of tomato over each breast. Season with some salt and pepper, drizzle with about 2 tablespoons EVOO and sprinkle with the remaining Parmigiano Reggiano (about a handful).
Bake the chicken pockets until cooked through and light golden brown, 20-25 minutes.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sample Menu

Sunday: Crockpot Spare Ribs, Amazing Potatoes, Salad and Rolls
Monday: Leftovers... I made enough for an army!
Tuesday: Mexican Lasagna
Wednesday: Chicken Noodle Soup, Breadsticks
Thursday: Orange Chicken over Ham fried rice (costco in boxes but delicious!)
Friday: Pizza
Saturday: Grilled hamburgers, Homemade french fries and Salad

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Black Bean Soup

I found this recipe on an article by MSN titled "Cheap and Low Calorie Dinners" and it lives up to it - you honestly can't get cheaper (it serves 6-8 good sized servings), all the ingredients are low cal, low or zero fat and all that good fiber and nutrition you get just from the black beans? You gotta be kiddin' me!

Black Bean Soup
1 tablespoon(s) canola oil (I used EVOO - habit)
1 small onion, chopped
1 tablespoon(s) chili powder
1 teaspoon(s) ground cumin
3 can(s) (15-ounce) black beans, rinsed
3 cup(s) water
1/2 cup(s) prepared salsa (like Pace)
1/4 teaspoon(s) salt
1 tablespoon(s) lime juice
4 tablespoon(s) reduced-fat sour cream (optional)
2 tablespoon(s) chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until beginning to soften, 2 to 3 minutes. Add chili powder and cumin and cook, stirring, 1 minute more. Add beans, water, salsa, and salt. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in lime juice.

Transfer half the soup to a blender and puree (use caution when pureeing hot liquids). Stir the puree back into the saucepan. Serve garnished with sour cream and cilantro, if desired.

*My kids are skinny little bugs so I served this soup to them with sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese and tortilla chips.

My husband ate it without any additions and slurped it up.

Hope you love it!

Hubs Fave Pickled Eggs

Have you ever eaten a pickled egg? It's something I am totally unfamiliar with. My husbands Mom makes/has made pickled eggs every February (so they are ready in time for Easter) and she makes enough to last through the deer hunt in October (also something I am totally unfamiliar with!)

I have never tried a pickled egg and honestly had never planned to until today. I decided that if I am going to post about them (for all the pickled egg peeps out there) that I myself must try them - because what kind of a food blog would this be if I wasn't eating the food myself?

I had to really psyche myself up to try these - not judging - just saying these are out of my comfort zone.

Honestly, they weren't bad. I don't think I'll ever choose to eat these again - but atleast I didn't gag or anything. I cut one egg into 4 sections and tried them 4 different ways (see how adventurous I am?)

If you have a crazy pickled egg lover in your family - try these and let me know what you think!
Hubs Fave Pickled Eggs
8 hard boiled eggs (in each jar - depends on how many jars you are making)
A little less than 1/2 jar full of white vinegar
8 Whole Peppercorns
4 Bay Leaves
2 T dehydrated minced onion

Combine all ingredients. Make sure the lids are nice and tight. Store them in your refrigerator for 3 to 4 weeks (they are supposed to get better with age). Can keep up to 6 months.

*I ate these 4 ways
1. plain
2. salt & pepper
3. salt, pepper and Tabasco (the way to go according to Hubs)
4. just pepper

Review - Mario Batali's Eggplant Parmesan

I posted in my Sample Menu that I would be making this recipe. I did. It was not good. With my little party of 5 - there wasn't a single person that liked it - not a one.
I am not the best cook around - but this recipe is so simple. It was really salty (and I love salt - so that tells you something) and the eggplant was unappetizing - unedible really. It was rubbery, difficult to cut and chew.

Maybe this is a great recipe - and I just need more practice with eggplant. Maybe if you sliced the eggplant thinner (1/2") than suggested (1 1/2") or...

Have you tried this recipe? Do you have a go do Eggplant Parmesan recipe to share? Maybe our resident vegetarian, Jessica has the answer for us...

...anyhow - still searching...

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Sample Menu 8

Another week - another set of dinners to prepare!
I am trying a bunch of new recipes again - I'll let you know if they are good!!
Sunday VALENTINES DAY Heart shaped pizza's from Papa Murphy's (a 7 + year tradition)
Wednesday Black Bean Soup
Friday Date night!! Kids get leftovers, pizza or mac n' cheese:)
Saturday Chili's Cajun Chicken Pasta (can't wait to try this one!)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Funeral Potatoes

If you live outside Utah - you may know these by another name. I grew up in SLC and these potatoes were what I looked forward to the most for Easter and Christmas dinners.

I told a friend that I was making them and she thought they were called funeral potatoes because eating them would give you a heart attack (good one!) but they are called that because in Utah, these babies are served at nearly every dinner after a funeral. Crazy name - but these are darn good!
Funeral Potatoes
48 oz. frozen hashbrowns (the shredded kind)
2 cans cream of chicken soup
2 cups sour cream
1 1/2 t dried minced onion (I prefer using fresh chopped onions - but I am an onion freak)
1 c shredded cheddar cheese

Mix everything except the hashbrowns together - then fold the hashbrowns in. Spread into a 9x13 casserole dish and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

*You can also use corn flakes cereal mixed with a little melted butter to top the casserole for the last 5 minutes of baking. I didn't have corn flakes - so I used Ritz crackers instead.

Monday, February 8, 2010

David Garrards Buffalo Chicken Dip

I saw this recipe on Rachael Ray's website - it was super delish! I served it with chips and cucumber slices. I really loved it with cucumber slices - it gives you the cool crunchy vibe - yum.
The pic above is it mixed up... the pic below is it in the pan - see those layers?
David Garrards Buffalo Chicken Dip
1 8-ounce package cream cheese
2 cups cooked chicken (a store-bought rotisserie chicken works best), shredded
1/2 cup buffalo wing sauce, recommended brand Texas Pete
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup blue cheese dressing (eyeball it)
1/4 to 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (eyeball it)

Preheat oven to 300°F.
Cover the bottom of an 8x8" dish or pie plate with cream cheese.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the shredded chicken, wing sauce and butter, and pour over the cream cheese-filled dish or pie plate.
Top with just enough blue cheese dressing and mozzarella cheese to cover (adding too much cheese will cause a thick skin to form that will make eating the dip difficult once the cheese cools).
Heat the dip in the oven for 20 minutes.

Julia Child's Spice Cake

*This pic has cream cheese frosting - the perfect accompaniment to spice cake...
*You can also make this a 'diet' item if you eat it just plain - or dust it lightly with confectioners sugar...
My friend, and co-author of this book, Dawn has a copy of Julia Child’s “The Joy of Cooking.” Ever since I borrowed it last year and started ‘reading’ it (because it is a read! She takes you there – she is so comprehensive about every aspect of every recipe you can’t help but get caught up in it all… (loved Julie & Julia by the way)

Anyway – Dawn is well aware of my kids allergies and while perusing the book one day called me and said that she found a cake recipe that didn’t have eggs (or milk)! I was surprised – but a bit put off when she listed the ingredients. It’s called “Mystery Cake”

I don’t know about you – but I would NEVER eat something with the word mystery in it – it reminds me of that episode of FRIENDS where Rachel makes trifle with ground beef – bleck…

Back to the matter at hand – the cake. It is a spice cake – from scratch. My husbands favorite kind of cake is spice cake – so he was a good judge for this recipe. He liked it and so did the rest of us! For sanity purposes I am going to re-name it…

Julia Child’s Spice Cake
2 c flour
1 t baking soda
1 t ground cinnamon
½ t ground nutmeg
½ t ground cloves
½ t salt
Beat in a large bowl at high speed until light and fluffy:
¼ c butter
1 c sugar
On low speed, beat in the four mixture in 3 parts, alternating with:
10 oz can condensed cream of tomato soup
In two parts, beating until smooth, beat in:
1 c chopped walnuts or pecans
1 c raisins
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan on a rack.
Dust with confectioners’ sugar
Or Frost with Cream Cheese frosting

*For this bundt cake – I doubled the recipe.
**Also, I couldn’t find cream of tomato – so I used regular tomato soup and I eliminated the pecans and raisins too...

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Sample Menu

Jen and I must have been on the same page last week. I also was inspired by Rachael Ray's top 10 list and White Chicken Chili is on this weeks menu!
I was so inspired by the list I went to and found some more recipes that I just have to try. So I am trying THREE of her recipes on this weeks menu. You can find the recipe links below. Try them with me!

Monday- Rachael Ray's White Chicken Chili and Breadsticks
Tuesday- Leftover chili
Wednesday- Tri tip steak, baked potatoes, salad
Thursday- Rachael Ray's Penne with Vodka sauce
Friday- Rachael Ray's Coconut Chicken cutlets
Saturday- Pizza (cheeseless for me)
Sunday- Turkey breast (I'm going to attempt to cook it in crockpot)... never tried this before, I will let you know how it turns out...

Thursday, February 4, 2010

White Bean Chicken Chili

This is one of Rachael Ray's Top Ten downloaded recipes of 2009 - it def deserves that title!
This recipe is so simple that my 5 & 2 year old girls made it - by themselves!! I literally got out the ingredients, opened all the cans and they took it from there... They were very proud of themselves - and since we split it with another family - they were extra excited to have so many people taste the fruits of their labor! *Makess approx. 10 dinner sized helpings.
White Bean Chicken Chili
1 32-ounce box chicken stock
3 cans white beans, left undrained
5 cups cooked chicken, rotisserie or boiled (I used canned chicken)
1 16-ounce jar salsa (I used 2 cans of Rotel b/c someone ate all the salsa!)
1 8-ounce block pepper jack cheese, grated
2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, minced
Black or white pepper to taste
1/2 cup finely crushed corn chips (if you like your chili thicker)
Sour cream, for garnish
Place all ingredients except the corn chips in a crockpot. Cook on high until the cheese is melted (about 1 - 1 1/2 hours).
Chili may also be cooked on the stovetop over medium-high heat until cheese is melted.
When the chili is ready, add the crushed corn chips, if using, and simmer for 10 minutes to thicken. Garnish with more chips, cheese and/or sour cream and serve.
*To make this 'diet' skip the tortilla chips and use non-fat sour cream.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

So Good You'll Never Guess It's Good For You - Dip

With many people trying to start the new year in a healthier way - I have decided to add another LABEL - it'll be a "Diet" section - for all healthy or low fat recipes - I hope we get a bunch going!
I know that is a long name - but there are so many versions of 7 layer dips that I wanted this to catch your attention!!!

I decided to make a LOW FAT, FIBER FILLED awesome SuperBowl/party snack dip - so that everyone can snack during the game!

I made this for lunch today and didn't tell my husband that it was uber healthy. After he finished he said - man - what did you put in that - it's the best layer dip I've had!

So Good You'll Never Guess It's Good For You - Dip
1 can Refried Beans (uncooked) 0 fat
1 can Black Beans (drained and rinsed) 0 fat
1 can Pinto Beans (drained and rinsed) 0 fat
Fat Free Plain Yogurt (or you could use fat free sour cream) 0 fat
Salsa (not fresh) 0 fat
Lettuce (shredded) 0 fat
Weight Watchers Mexican Shredded Blend Cheese (5 g fat per serving)
Cayenne Powder
Black Pepper

In a casserole dish, spread refried beans on the entire bottom of the dish. Then sprinkle the black and pinto beans evenly over that. Eyeball the yogurt or sour cream and spread over the beans. Sprinkle yogurt with cayenne & black pepper & salt (if needed). Eyeball the salsa as well - spread over the yogurt. Layer lettuce and cheese (if using). Refrigerate until use. Serve with baked chips, reduced fat tortilla chips, whole wheat tortillas (burrito style - yum!) or whatever you can think of!!

*I would've also added a layer of diced green onions - but I didn't have any...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Linguine with Shrimp and Creamy Roasted Tomatoes

I saw this recipe on MSN's food page. It was super delish!!

Linguine with Shrimp and Creamy Roasted Tomatoes
1 1/2 cup(s) grape tomatoes
1 tablespoon(s) extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon(s) thyme leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3/4 pound(s) linguine (I used whole grain rotini)
1 cup(s) heavy cream
3/4 pound(s) large shrimp, shelled, deveined and halved lengthwise (I used precooked small shrimp - it's just what I had)
2 teaspoon(s) fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon(s) finely grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon(s) coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. In a large ovenproof skillet, toss the tomatoes with the olive oil and thyme and season with salt and pepper. Roast the tomatoes for about 25 minutes, until starting to brown and their skins split.
Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the linguine until al dente; drain.
Add the cream to the tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Cook over moderate heat, gently crushing the tomatoes, until the cream thickens slightly, about 3 minutes. Add the shrimp and simmer over moderate heat until cooked through, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the linguine to the skillet along with the lemon juice and toss over low heat until the pasta is coated, about 1 minute. Add the lemon zest and parsley and toss. Transfer the pasta to warm bowls and serve at once.

*I added shredded Mizithra cheese - because I had it on hand after making Mizithra Cheese & Browned Butter Pasta . You could also add parm:) Yum!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Easy Parmesan Chicken

This also comes from Best Loved Slow Cooker Recipes (Page 142). It was FANTASTIC! Definitely the best recipe we've tried yet and it was SO easy!!!
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
1 medium onion, cut into thin wedges
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 jar pasta sauce
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
hot cooked spaghetti
Place mushrooms & onions in Crock Pot
Heat oil in large skillet. Lightly brown chicken on both sides. Place chicken in Crock Pot. Pour pasta sauce over chicken; add basil, oregano, & bay leaf. Cover; cook on LOW 6-7 hours or on HIGH 3-4 hours, or until chicken is tender.
Sprinkle chicken with cheeses. Cook, uncovered on LOW an additional 15-30 minutes or until cheese have melted. Serve over spaghetti.


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