Friday, April 30, 2010

Busy! Busy! Busy!

It has been crazy at my house the last few weeks.  We are getting ready for a move, the end of the school year is coming up and we have had girl scout activities. 

I have been cooking and baking and will be posting some awesome recipes over the next few days, so be on the look out!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Recipe Review: Chicken with Tomatoes and Garlic

I was reading through some of my favorite blogs looking for new dishes for this week's menus and stumbled across this most delicious chicken dish on The Pioneer Woman's blog.  It was a perfect pantry meal as I keep all of these items in my freezer and pantry.  As my kid's filtered in and out of the house, they all asked what was for dinner.  For such a simple dish it was packed with flavor.  We had ours with rice and the sauce was so wonderful spooned over it.

I would have loved to have shared a picture, but as soon as I opened the lid my family was all over it and it was gone in seconds.  This will be going into our family cookbook and into menu rotation.

Recipe Review: Farmer's Casserole

OMG...this was so yummy!  I was surprised how good it tasted.  It is like a quiche but even better.  I found the recipe on Tried-and-True cooking with Heidi.  My entire family enjoyed every bite of this casserole!  And it made enough to feed an family plus two additional hungry teenagers.  I made a few changes but stuck to the recipe for the most part. 

Farmer's Casserole
(adapted from Heidi's recipe)
1 bag frozen diced potatoes
1 cup shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
1 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese
1 cup diced ham or Canadian style bacon
1-4.5 oz can mild green chiles
1/4 cup green onions, sliced
4 beaten eggs (or 1 cup frozen egg product)
1-12 oz. can evaporated milk
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp salt

Grease a 2 qt. square baking dish. Arrange potatoes evenly in bottom of dish. Sprinkle with cheeses, ham, green chiles (optional), and green onions. In medium mixing bowl, combine eggs, milk, pepper and salt. Pour egg mixture over potato mixture in dish. Cover and chill several hours or overnight. Bake uncovered in a 350 degree oven for 40-45 minutes or until center appears set. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Extra shredded cheese can be sprinkled on top during the last 15 minutes of baking.

Thanks Heidi for an awesome recipe!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Recipe: Chili Cheese Bread

I love fresh homemade bread and so does everyone in my family.  This is a good one that even my little girls who don't like spicy foods will eat.  The chilis just dissolve into the dough.  This is great with soups and salads.  I start my breads in the breadmaker and then bake them off in the oven.  I use glass, stone and metal loaf pans and it turns out great everytime! 

Chili Cheese Bread
1 cup water
2 tbsp oil
1 4 oz can diced chilis
4 cups AP flour
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 tsp salt
3 tsp yeast
2 cups sharp cheddar cheese

Add items to bread machine pan in order listed excluding the cheese.  Set cycle to dough and allow the dough to go through the first rising.  At the punch down, add cheddar cheese and allow it to get worked into the dough.  Once the dough has the cheese incorporated, turn off the cycle.  Turn the dough out and cut in half.  Spray two loaf pans and add a half to each pan.  Allow breads to rise in a warm area.  I ususally put the pans in the microwave.  Once the dough has doubled in size, place in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes.  Allow to cool in the pans for about 10 minutes then remove from pans and allow them to cool on a rack.

Recipe Review: Meatloaf Casserole

It is rare that I have any leftovers when we have meatloaf, but I made an extra large loaf so that I would have leftovers for this recipe from Christy Jordan's Southern Plate.  I must say it was very delicious and my family ate it up.  We love casseroles and I find it is a great way to stretch my grocery budget.  I used elbow noodles and more cheese.  I could not find meatloaf sauce so I just used a jarred pasta sauce. 

Meatloaf Casserole
recipe from Christy Jordan/Southern Plate

Leftover Meatloaf (2-4 cups, crumbled)
1 Can Meatloaf Sauce (Hunt’s comes in a can of about 16 ounce size – you can also use your
    own meatloaf sauce)
2 Cups uncooked small shell pasta
2 Cups Ricotta Cheese
2 Cups mozzarella cheese

Cook pasta according to package directions and drain. Place in bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. In medium sized bowl, stir together cheeses until well combined. Top pasta with half of cheese mixture. Spread half the meatloaf sauce over the top. Top with crumbled meatloaf. Add remaining cheese and top with remaining sauce, spreading to cover the top. Bake, uncovered, at 350 for thirty minutes, or until bubbly.

I served the casserole with a salad and some cheesy bread for a complete meal.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Recipe: BBQ Beef Sandwiches

When I was pregnant with my first daughter, I craved chopped BBQ beef sandwiches for the first 6 months.  I couldn't get enough and lucky for my husband there was a barbecue restaurant not far from our house.  And oddly enough, my daughter now loves them as much as I do. 

I make this recipe at least once a month and it is especially great in the summer because it cooks in the crockpot and doesn't heat up your kitchen.  Before I could snap a picture of the finished goodness, my family started eating it up! time!

BBQ Beef

1 roast, about 2 - 3 lbs  (I have used brisket, chuck roast, london broil...they all turn out great)
1 1/2 cups barbecue sauce
1/2 cup apricot preserves
1 red pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 tbsp brown sugar
Hamburger buns and condiments of your choice (pickles, slaw, additional bbq sauce, etc.)

Place roast in slow cooker.  In a bowl, combine barbecue sauce, preserves and brown sugar.  Pour over roast.  Add red pepper and onion.  Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or until meat is tender.
Remove roast and shred with two forks.  Drain pot leaving some liquid in the pot.  Chop the shredded meat into bite size and return to pot.  Add more bbq sauce if needed.  The meat should be moist but not juicy. Cook about 20 minutes longer.

This recipe makes about 8 to 12 sandwiches depending on how much meat you put on each sandwiches.



Monday, April 12, 2010

Recipe Review: Portuguese Sweet Bread I

I came across this recipe the other day and decided to give it a try.  I must say it was very delish!  My girls loved it and ate a couple of pieces with butter while it was still warm.  I think this will also be perfect for kolaches. 

This will make it into our family recipe book.

Menu Plan Monday

Meatloaf Casserole

BBQ Beef Sandwiches
Cheesy Ranch Bake
Baked Beans


Crockpot Burritos
Mexican Rice

Chicken Wings

Farmers Casserole

To Bake
Yummy Blueberry Breakfast Cake
Caramel Hazelnut Banana Bread
Coconut Dream Bars
Portugese Sweet Bread for Kolaches
Lemonade Cupcakes

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Recipe Review: Cheese Enchiladas and Chalupas/Tostadas

For supper last night, I made cheese enchiladas.  I have to say they were very tasty.  I had some corn tortillas that I wanted to use up from the king ranch casserole that I made a few weeks ago.  That is the beauty of corn tortillas....they last forever!  I thought the process of frying the tortillas would be a pain, but I was happy that it didn't take very long and I didn't have torn tortillas when I folded them like I have in the past when I have warmed them in the microwave.  I aslo fried some to make my version of chalupas/tostada.  I put some pintos on earlier in the day.  After having meat dishes for days, I was ready for no meat night.  For the chalupas/tostadas, I put the pinto beans on the hard corn tortilla shell, some very yummy tomatoes and shredded cheese...perfection!  The girls and I loved them!  As for the cheese enchiladas, I felt like I was eating at a mexican restaurant.  They were delish!  The recipe that I used was from Mommy's Kitchen, one of my favorite blogs. 

I will be adding this one to our family cookbook!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Can you believe it is already April?

It seems that time is flying by this year.  I must admit that I am glad that winter is coming to an end.  We have had lovely weather but it did snow last night.  Maybe that will be the last of it! 

It has been busy this week!  The kids are off on spring break and we are getting ready for our move to Texas.  Hailey has one last big project before school is out next month.  It is a bottle buddy and has to be about a historical figure.  She thinks she is going to do Rattlesnake Kate.  I will be glad when school is out so I don't have anymore homework to do!