Friday, December 16, 2011

Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean Casserole is such a classic dish.  This is my version of the classic recipe with just a few changes to make it the way we like it at our household. 

Green Bean Casserole

2 cans french-style green beans, drained
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp black ground pepper
1 1/3 cup french fried onions, separated
After draining green beans, mix green beans, milk, soup, and pepper.  Add 2/3 cup of french fried onions.  Pour into ungreased baking dish.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until bubbly.  Top with remaining 2/3 cup french fried onions, bake 5 more minutes until golden brown.


Mediterranean Dip

I made this dip for a Christmas party at school and it was a huge hit!  It was gone by the end of lunch and everyone was asking for the recipe.  You must try this one!

Mediterranean Dip

1 pkg cream cheese, softened
1 4oz jar roasted red peppers, drained and chopped
½ cup kalamata olives, chopped
¼ cup balsamic vinaigrette
6 oz feta cheese
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp basil
Spread cream cheese in bottom of dish.  Mix all other ingredients, spread over top of cream cheese.  Top with more fresh parsley.  Serve cold with crackers.


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Tangy Pork Chop Bake

This is a good recipe that is quick and easy to put together and stick in the oven.  It makes a great, easy weeknight meal.

Tangy Pork Chop Bake

1 box Stove Top stuffing mix for Pork
4 tbsp butter
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
3/4 cup barbecue sauce
2 tbsp brown sugar
4 bone-in pork chops
In a large skillet, brown pork chops over medium heat (about 5 minutes per side).  Meanwhile, prepare stuffing mix according to package directions.  Place browned pork chops in 9x13 baking dish.  Lightly mix cranberry sauce, brown sugar, and BBQ sauce into stuffing.  Top pork chops with stuffing mix.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until pork is cooked through.  Serve with vegetables or a salad.





Monday, November 28, 2011

Hot Pimento Cheese Crab Dip

This is my variation of a Paula Deen recipe.  This pimento cheese dip would be great even without the crab if you aren't a fan of seafood, but the crab adds a nice touch.  Serve it hot with crackers.

Hot Pimento Cheese Crab Dip

1/4 cup (2 oz) brie
1/4 cup (2 oz) cream cheese, softened
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup pepper jack cheese
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 tbsp hot sauce
1/2 lb lump crab meat, chopped small
1/2 small onion, grated and drained
1/4 cup pimentos, undrained
dash of salt and pepper
In a food processor, mix cream cheese, brie, grated onion, mayonnaise, salt/pepper, and hot sauce until well blended.  Add 1/2 cup cheddar, 1/2 cup pepper jack, pimentos, and crab to food processor and mix well.  Remove from food processor and place in medium bowl, stir in rest of cheddar and pepper jack.  Place in well greased shallow baking dish (I used a pie plate).  Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes until hot and bubbly.  Serve with crackers.





Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Pumpkin Pie Bars

This is another great pumpkin recipe for the fall.  Serve these warm or cold with coffee!

Pumpkin Pie Bars

1 pkg cream cheese, softened
1 can pumpkin
3/4 c cold butter
1 1/3 c flour
1/2 c brown sugar
3/4 c sugar
1 c oats
1/2 c pecans, chopped
3 eggs
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven to 350.  Line 13x9 pan with foil, grease foil lining with cooking spray.  Mix flour, brown sugar, 1/4 c sugar in bowl.  Cut in cold butter until coarse crumbs appear.  Stir in oats and pecans.  Reserving 1 c of oat mixture, press remaining in pan.  Bake 15 minutes.

Beat cream cheese, remaining 1/2 c sugar, pumpkin, and spice in bowl with hand mixer until smooth.  Pour over crust; sprinkle with reserved oat mixture.  Bake 25 minutes.  Cool completely then remove foil from pan to cut into bars.  Refrigerate left-overs.



Thursday, November 10, 2011

Pumpkin Waffles

I experimented on Saturday morning and came up with a delicious pumpkin waffle recipe.  It is great for the fall!

Pumpkin Waffles

2 c "just add water" pancake/waffle mix
1/2 c pumpkin
1/3 c oil
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
real maple syrup
Heat waffle iron.  Mix waffle mix according to package directions.  Add pumpkin, stir well.  Add in spices, stir until combined.  Allow mix to sit 5 minutes while waffle iron is preheating.  Spray waffle iron with cooking spray, cook waffles until steam stops coming out of iron and waffles are no longer sticking to the iron.  Top with butter and real maple syrup.  Makes 8 waffles.




Thursday, November 3, 2011

Shrimp and Grits

I always wanted to attempt a shrimp and grits recipe, but I have to admit, I was a little intimidated.  I tried out this Paula Deen recipe and it turned out pretty good.  I'll definitely make a few changes next time and I've put a few changes from the original recipe in here, so if you try it out and have some ideas, please comment and let me know what you did differently!

Shrimp and Grits

1 c stone ground grits
salt and pepper
1/4 c butter
1 c shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
6 slices bacon, chopped into small pieces
4 tsp lemon juice
2 tbsp parsley
1 c green onion, chopped
1 clove of garlic, minced
Cook grits according to package directions, adding salt and pepper to taste.  When done, remove from heat and stir in the butter and cheddar until melted.  Keep covered until ready to serve.
Fry the bacon until brown and crispy, then drain.  Once cool, chop into small pieces.
Add shrimp to 1 cup of bacon grease and saute over medium heat until they just turn pink, about 2-3 minutes.  Do not overcook the shrimp!  Remove from heat and immediately add the lemon juice, parsley, green onion, and garlic.
Pour the grits into a serving bowl.  Top with shrimp mixture (I spooned out the shrimp and then just added a little of the liquid) and sprinkle with bacon.






Thursday, October 27, 2011

Mediterranean Chicken with Parmesan Couscous

I found this recipe online and it exceeded my expectations after a few changes by me of course!  It is a great, quick, and easy chicken dish.  It has a little kick to it, so beware if you aren't a fan of spicy.  It is also my first time having couscous and it went very well with this dish.

Mediterranean Chicken with Parmesan Couscous

1/3 c grated romano cheese
1/4 c panko bread crumbs
1 tsp basil
1/4 tsp paprika
1 1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
4 chicken breasts
1/4 c Greek nonfat yogurt
1 pkg parmesan couscous
Mix first 6 ingredients in medium sized bowl.  Place yogurt in another medium sized bowl.  Dip chicken in yogurt, turning to coat.  Then dip chicken in bread crumb mixture, turning to coat.  Place a small amount of olive oil in a skillet (enough to cover the bottom) and turn heat to medium.  Cook chicken in skillet until no longer pink inside, about 7-10 minutes on each side.  Meanwhile, cook couscous according to package instructions.  Serve over couscous with a vegetable of your choice.  Serves 4.





Monday, October 17, 2011

Blueberry Cream Cheese Rolls

These make a great sweet treat or breakfast pastry!  I've even cut them smaller and shaped them to look like little diapers before for a baby shower.  They are even delicious left-over out of the refrigerator.

Blueberry Cream Cheese Rolls

1 pkg crescent rolls
4 oz cream cheese, softened
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 c blueberries
Preheat over to 375 degrees.  Unroll dough into 4 rectangles.  Combine cream cheese and sugar, spread onto rectangles.  Top with blueberries.  Fold over and press corners together to seal.  Place on ungreased baking sheet, bake 11-13 minutes or until lightly browned.  Serve warm then refrigerate left-overs.




Thursday, October 13, 2011

Chocolate Pie

I made this Chocolate Pie for my sister-in-law's birthday.  It is rich, but so delicious!  It requires you to make your own whipped cream...but don't be frightened away by that.  It was a lot easier than I expected it to be, and it ended up being very good!

Chocolate Pie

5 Hershey's chocolate bars
8 squares caramel
5 marshmellows
2 c heavy whipping cream
1 prepared chocolate cookie pie crust
In microwave safe bowl, combine chocolate, caramel, marshmellows, and 1/3 c whipping cream.  Microwave on high about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until melted and smooth.  Allow chocolate mixture to cool.  In medium bowl, add 2/3 c whipping cream.  Place bowl inside a larger bowl filled with ice water.  With cold mixer whisks, beat cream on low 30 seconds.  Increase speed to medium once you see bubbles, beat 30 seconds.  Increase speed to high until cream is whipped and peaks begin to form.  Keep whipped cream cold until ready to use.  Once chocolate mixture is cool, fold in whipped cream.  Mix until smooth, pour into crust.  Refrigerate overnight.  Whip remaining 1 c cream for topping, add sugar to taste.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Chicken Divan

This is another delicious recipe from my mother-in-law.  It's an easy weeknight meal!

Chicken Divan

3 chicken breasts
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 10-oz package frozen chopped broccoli
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 c mayo
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp cumin
Boil chicken and cut into small pieces.  Steam broccoli, drain.  Place broccoli in bottom of 2 qt glass baking dish.  Add chicken on top.  Mix cream of chicken soup, mayo, lemon juice, and spices.  Spread over chicken.  Top with sharp cheddar cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.  Serve over rice.





Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

This delicious pumpkin cake recipe is from my mother-in-law.  I always look forward to the fall so I can make this cake...it's so moist!

Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

1 c oil
2 c sugar
2 c canned pumpkin
4 eggs
2 c flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
4 oz cream cheese, softened
3/4 stick butter, softened
3 tbsp milk
1 3/4 c powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour a 9x13 cake pan.  Mix first 9 ingredients with hand mixer until smooth.  Bake for 30-35 minutes until toothpick inserted into cake comes out almost clean.  Allow cake to cool completely before icing.  For icing, mix cream cheese, butter, milk, powdered sugar, and vanilla with hand mixer until smooth.  Ice cake and immediately refrigerate.  In the Nelson family, we top with sprinkles.  Keep cake refrigerated.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Crock Pot Swiss Steak

This is a great slow cooker recipe that you can make the night before and cook all day.  It's wonderful for a busy night of running around.  Serve with rice or pasta and broccoli.

Slow Cooker Swiss Steak

2 lb eye round chuck roast
1/4 cup A1 steak sauce
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes, undrained (I used basil, oregano, & garlic flavored)
1 small onion, chopped
Cut roast into 1 inch cubes.  Place in slow cooker, toss with A1 steak sauce.  Top with tomatoes and onion.  Cook on low 9 hours or on high 4-5 hours.  Serve over rice or pasta.  (You can put this together the night before and refrigerate.)



Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Shrimp Scampi with Angel Hair Pasta

This is another great shrimp recipe that's really quick and pretty easy.  Brent and I had never had shrimp scampi before, so we weren't sure how it was supposed to look, but it was really good!  

Shrimp Scampi with Angel Hair Pasta

1 lb large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 stick butter
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tbsp minced garlic
1/2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
8 oz whole grain angel hair pasta, cooked and drained
In a medium saucepan, melt butter with mustard, garlic, parsley, and lemon juice.  Place shrimp in shallow baking dish (I used a pie plate).  Once butter is melted, pour sauce over shrimp.  Bake at 450 degrees for 9-10 minutes or until shrimp is done.  Serve over angel hair pasta.  I served with sauteed squash as a side dish.





Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Cornbread Crab Cakes

This is another Southern Living crab cake recipe.  It's a little more involved and time-consuming if you make your own cornbread (which I recommend), but the difference is worth it.  They were delicious, but it does make 12 crab cakes, so unless you are cooking for a crowd I would recommend cutting the recipe in half.  

Crab Cakes

2/3 cup finely diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped green onions
2 tsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/3 cup mayonnaise (I used fat-free)
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
1 tsp hot sauce (add a few extra dashes if you like hot)
1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
1 tsp lemon zest
2 cups cornbread crumbs
1 lb fresh lump crabmeat, shredded or broken into small pieces
Saute bell pepper, green onion, and garlic in olive oil over medium high heat for 2 minutes.  Remove from heat, cool.  Combine bell pepper mixture, mayonnaise, parsley, eggs, hot sauce, Old Bay, and lemon zest in large bowl.  Fold in cornbread crumbs and shredded crabmeat.  Shape mixture into cake (about 2.5 inches each), place on lightly greased baking sheet.  Chill for 45 minutes.  Lightly coat cakes with cooking spray.  Cook crab cakes in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until lightly browned on each side (about 5-7 minutes per side).  Serve immediately.

It was also recommended to serve these with a jalapeno-cilantro sour cream.  I did not think it was necessary, the crab cakes were delicious on their own.  But if you want to try it, here's the recipe:

Jalapeno-Cilantro Sour Cream

1 8oz container sour cream
2 tbsp chopped pickled jalapenos
2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro
Mix together and chill until use (up to 3 days).




Monday, August 29, 2011

Pan-Seared Red Snapper

In Brent's travels to Alabama for work, he is able to bring home a lot of fresh seafood!  This time he brought home a huge filet of red snapper.  We tag-teamed this recipe and came up with a delicious fish!  Hope you enjoy!

Pan-Seared Red Snapper

1 tbsp paprika
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
4 6-oz snapper filets
1 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp butter
1 small lemon
2 tbsp fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Mix first five ingredients in medium bowl.  Pat snapper with mixture until covered.  Heat oil and 2 tbsp butter in large skillet until melted, but not smoking.  Add snapper, cook about 4 minutes on first side.  Add 1 tbsp butter to skillet, flip snapper and cook an additional 4 minutes or until fish is flaky.  Serve with rice and top with parsley and juice from lemon.



Saturday, August 20, 2011

Hot Artichoke Dip

This artichoke dip is another recipe from "The Pioneer Woman".  I never follow recipes exactly, so this is my version.  This recipe makes a lot, so if you are only serving a few people, you may want to cut it in half.

Hot Artichoke Dip

2 14 oz cans artichoke hearts, drained
1 8 oz pkg cream cheese, softened
1 c mayonnaise (I used "real" mayo, not the low-fat stuff I usually buy)
1/8-1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (depending on how much spice you prefer)
2 green onions, chopped
1 c grated Parmesan/Romano cheese mix
dash of salt and pepper (a little less than 1/8 tsp each)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Chop 1 can of artichokes into small pieces.  Add to blender with cream cheese and mayo.  Sprinkle in cayenne pepper and chopped green onions.  Pulse 6-7 times until mixed (you don't want to liquefy it, just pulse until well mixed).  Place in large bowl, add in parmesan, salt, and pepper.  Roughly chop remaining artichokes, stir in.  Pour into glass dish, bake 20 minutes or until hot & bubbly.  Serve with blue tortilla chips.


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Banana Pudding Trifle

We are having dinner tonight at my house to celebrate my dad's birthday and my birthday.  My dad loves banana pudding, so I made it for dessert.  This is a pretty dessert that looks great in a trifle bowl.  It's also just a great classic banana pudding recipe.

Banana Pudding Trifle

8 oz sour cream
1 8 oz whipped topping, thawed
1 5 oz pkg vanilla pudding
2 c milk
1 pkg vanilla wafers
4 bananas
Combine sour cream, whipped topping, pudding, and milk.  Beat with wire whisk until smooth.  Layer vanilla wafers, pudding mix, then bananas.  Repeat layers, ending with vanilla wafers.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.





Monday, August 1, 2011

Jalapeno Corn Dip

This is a super spicy, super easy dip to throw together if you are having guests.  If you aren't a fan of spice, you can substitute the jalapenos with green chiles or just lower the amount of jalapenos you use.

Jalapeno Corn Dip

1 bag frozen corn
1 stick butter
1 8 oz pkg cream cheese, softened
1/2 12 oz jar jalapenos
Drain and chop jalapenos.  Add all ingredients in large bowl, microwave on high 2-3 minutes until melted.  Stir until smooth.  Add to crockpot and keep warm on low.  Serve with blue tortilla chips.



Thursday, July 28, 2011

Panko Crusted Fish

Brent and I are trying to eat more fish and seafood.  This is a great recipe that you can use with any kind of fish!  I used tilapia filets, because that is what my store had fresh.  Feel free to try it with other fish and comment to let me know what you used!

Panko Crusted Fish

2 tilapia filets
1/2 cup margarine, melted
1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1 cup unseasoned panko
2 tsp Old Bay seasoning
Preheat oven to 375.  Line a baking pan with foil, then spray lightly with cooking spray.  In a shallow dish, combine melted margarine and lemon juice.  In another shallow dish, combine panko, garlic salt, and Old Bay seasoning.  Dip fish filets in butter/lemon mixture.  Drop into panko mixture, pressing the crumbs onto the fish with your fingertips.  Place filets in a single layer on baking pan.  Top filets with more panko mixture.  Bake 15 minutes, until fish is flaky.  Serve with broccoli. 


Sunday, July 24, 2011

Fried Okra!

Okay, I must admit, that although I am a true Southerner, I didn't like fried okra until a few years ago when I tried my mother-in-law's.  I could never get excited about the frozen blandly breaded okra served in restaurants.  I have played around with the recipe for my own fried okra and now I love it!  So I hope even if you're not really a fan of okra, you'll try this out!  (And the best part, okra is SO easy to grow on your own...this summer all the fried okra has been from my very own garden!)

Fried Okra

12-14 pods of okra (picked at about 3-4 inches if growing your own, too much larger and they'll be too dry)
4-5 tbsp flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
canola oil
Cut the ends off of the okra pods.  Cut the okra pods into 1/2 inch pieces.  Place in mixing bowl.  Sprinkle with salt, mix the okra around until all have been sprinkled with salt.  Sprinkle with black pepper, again mix around.  Dredge in flour until all okra are covered.  Allow to sit five minutes, then stir one last time.  Heat enough canola oil over medium heat to cover the okra.  Once oil is hot, add okra and allow to cook.  Allow the okra to cook, so DON'T mess with them except to turn them about the pan once.  Cook until breading begins to turn light brown.  Drain on paper towels.



Thursday, July 21, 2011

Shrimp & Chicken in Sour Cream Sherry Sauce

This is another great recipe from my mother-in-law.  You definitely must try this one!  As I've said before, I'm not really a fan of shrimp, but Brent is, so the combination of chicken and shrimp in this dish makes everyone happy.  

Shrimp & Chicken in Sour Cream Sherry Sauce

3 tbsp margarine
3-4 tbsp flour (start with 3 tbsp, add more if you desire thicker sauce) 
1 c chicken broth
3/4 tsp garlic salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 c sour cream
1/4-1/3 c dry cooking sherry (this varies depending on how you like the taste, start with 1/4 c and add more if you like)
1 1/2 c diced chicken
1 1/2 c chopped shrimp
1 tbsp olive oil

Cook chicken in small skillet with 1 tbsp olive oil until no longer pink, usually 5-7 minutes (I season the chicken with Montreal chicken seasoning).  Boil water for shrimp.  When water is boiling, add chopped shrimp and cook about 30 seconds.  Do not overcook the shrimp!  Drain shrimp into a bowl of cold water to stop the cooking process.  After shrimp has cooled, drain and set shrimp and chicken aside. 

Melt butter in large skillet.  Blend in flour slowly; add broth and heat.  Stir constantly until thick and smooth.  Mix in seasonings, sour cream, and sherry; heat for about two minutes, stirring constantly.  Add chicken and shrimp, heat and stir another 2-3 minutes.  Serve over rice.





Sunday, July 17, 2011

Cookout Baked Beans

This is a family recipe for baked beans that I love!  I know that you can buy baked beans and cook them straight out of a can, but this is a good basic recipe for seasoning them yourself.

Cookout Baked Beans

1 large can Van Camps pork & beans
3/4 c ketchup
3/4 c white sugar
2 tbsp mustard
6 strips bacon
Mix all ingredients except bacon in large mixing bowl.  Pour into foil lined baking dish.  Top with strips of bacon.  Bake at 350 degrees for two hours.  If you are short on time, you can cook these on the stovetop and skip the bacon.  In a skillet, heat the beans over medium heat until sauce thickens.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Slow Cooker BBQ

It has been a little while since I've posted, but I have been enjoying my summer off by traveling!  I've been to the beach and the mountains and took a 10 day trip to California with my husband.  We visited LA, San Francisco, Yosemite National Park (where we hiked Half Dome!), and drove up the Pacific Coast Highway.  It was an amazing trip, so I posted a few pictures for you to see!





Today's recipe is something I've wanted to try for a long time.  It's a slow cooker BBQ recipe that I found online and I've been waiting on a day that I had 12 hours to cook it.  It turned out better than I even expected to, so I hope you'll try it out!

Slow Cooker BBQ

4 lb boston butt pork shoulder
2 bottles BBQ sauce of your choice (I used a spicy, sweet sauce)
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp black pepper
Place whole pork in crockpot.  Sprinkle 1 tsp of each seasoning over the top of the pork.  Pour one bottle of BBQ sauce over pork.  Cook on low 8 hours.  After 8 hours, remove pork from crockpot and place on broiler pan.  Pour out liquid from crockpot, reserving 1/8-1/4 cup.  Separate and shred pork, add back into crockpot.  Pour second bottle of BBQ sauce over pork.  Add 1/8 cup of liquid.  Continue to cook on low for at least another hour and up to 3-4 more hours.  Stir every 20 minutes or so, adding more liquid if BBQ starts to look dry.  (I ended up turning my crockpot to "warm" after about an hour to keep it from drying out.)  Serve as a sandwich or eat on its own with slaw and baked beans.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Lemon Mint Chicken

This year, I planted mint in my garden.  I didn't know it would grow so easily and so quickly!  I wanted to find some new dishes that used mint.  This sounded like an interesting recipe, so I made it my own.  It ended up being a very fresh, summer meal!

Lemon Mint Chicken

2 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
1 1/2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 small onion, chopped
1/2 cup flour (I seasoned the flour with salt, pepper, and a little paprika and red pepper...it gave it a nice bite)
1/3 cup margarine
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
Combine the chicken pieces, garlic, and onion.  Toss with flour and other seasonings.  Allow to sit 5 minutes.  Melt margarine in skillet over medium high heat.  Shake the excess flour from the chicken and add the chicken to the skillet.  Cook until golden brown (about 5-7 minutes).  Add the lemon juice and mint, reduce heat to medium, cover and steam about 5 minutes.  Do not overcook the chicken.  Serve over pasta or rice (I used a butter and herb pasta, it turned out to be really good!)



Friday, June 10, 2011

Tilapia Parmesan

Like I've said before, I'm not a huge fan of seafood, although I do like fish.  So, I'm trying to find some different ways to cook fish.  I found this recipe online and only tweaked it a little.  It makes a great sauce that could be used on many different things...we may try it on steak next week!  It is also a VERY quick meal!

Tilapia Parmesan

tilapia filets, 1 pound
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese (I used a Parmesan/Romano shredded mix)
1/4 cup butter, softened
3 tbsp mayonnaise (I used fat-free!)
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp basil
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp onion powder
1/8 tsp garlic salt
Preheat your oven's broiler on high.  Grease a broiling pan or line a pan with foil.  In the meantime, mix Parmesan, butter, mayonnaise, and lemon juice together.  Season with basil, pepper, onion powder, and garlic salt.  Arrange filets in a single layer on pan, broil on top rack for 2-3 minutes.  Turn fish over, broil 2 more minutes.  Remove fish from oven, spread Parmesan mixture over fish.  Broil 2-3 more minutes or until cheese mixture is melted.  Be sure not to overcook the fish.




Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Foil-Pack Artichoke Chicken

This is a great recipe that I found online and adapted to make my own!  It is a great, easy main dish!

Foil-Pack Artichoke Chicken

1 1/2 c rice
1 1/2 c water
2 chicken breasts, trimmed
1 small jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
1 can diced Italian tomatoes, drained
1/4 c Italian dressing (I used Kraft Roasted Red Pepper Italian...delicious!)
1/8 c pesto
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Mix rice and water in bowl, spoon into center of foil rectangle.  Place 1 chicken breast on top of rice, top with half of the artichokes and tomatoes.  Mix dressing and pesto in small bowl, drizzle half over chicken.  Bring up the sides of the foil.  Double fold the top and sides to seal in moisture.  Be sure to leave enough room for air to circulate.  Repeat with second chicken breast.  Bake 35 minutes in baking dish, allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.  Serve with salad.


Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Spicy Sausage Teragoni

Yes, I know Teragoni is not a real word.  But this recipe is a creation of mine and Brent named it "Sausage Teragoni"!  It's basically just a spicy sausage pasta dish.  It's an easy two pot meal and you can tone down the spicyness if you prefer.

Spicy Sausage Teragoni

1 lb link sausage, diced (I buy Hillshire Farms spicy)
2 1/2 cups whole wheat rigatoni pasta
1 small can tomato sauce
1 can diced Italian tomatoes
1/2 cup balsamic vinegarette dressing
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1/2 tsp minced garlic
oregano and basil
Cook pasta according to package directions, drain.  Brown sausage in skillet with garlic.  Once sausage is browned, add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, dressing, and seasonings.  Cook over medium heat for 5-6 minutes.  Toss in pasta and 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese until cheese is melted.  Top with other 1/2 cup cheese.  Serve with salad.





Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Dip

This is a great dip to take to parties or tailgates!  You can lower the amount of buffalo wing sauce if you like things a little milder.

Buffalo Chicken Dip

3 chicken breasts, boiled or rotisserie chicken, shredded
1/2 cup ranch dressing
8 oz cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup buffalo wing sauce (I always use Ken's)
1 cup cheddar cheese
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
Mix first four ingredients and 1/2 cup cheddar until blended.  Spread in ungreased baking dish, top with remaining cheddar cheese and 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.  Serve with tortilla chips.


Monday, May 16, 2011

Spicy Three Bean Chili

Strangely enough, it's in the 60s today in South Carolina.  Although it's mid-May, the cloudy, cool weather tempted me to make some chili for dinner tonight.  So here is my Spicy Three Bean Chili creation.  Enjoy!

Spicy Three Bean Chili

1 lb ground beef
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can tomato sauce
1 can black beans, drained
1 can light red kidney beans, drained
1 can dark red kidney beans, drained
1 can water
1 onion, diced
1 clove mince garlic
1 tbsp chili power
1/2 tsp red pepper (if you aren't a big fan of spicy food, cut this down to 1/4 or 1/8 tsp)
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp salt
Brown ground beef with onion and garlic, drain.  Add all ingredients to large soup pot, bring to a boil.  Lower heat, simmer at least 20 minutes.  Serve with sour cream and shredded cheese.


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Pecan Pie Muffins

My aunt Gail made these muffins from the Pioneer Woman website for a shower a couple of weeks ago.  I just had to find the recipe and try them myself...they are so moist and delicious!  Even if you aren't a big fan of pecans, you need to try these muffins!

Pecan Pie Muffins

1/2 c flour
1 c light brown sugar
1 c pecans, finely chopped
2/3 c butter, softened
2 eggs, beaten
Mix all dry ingredients together.  In a separate bowl, beat butter and eggs until smooth.  Add to dry ingredients, stir until combined.  Drop by spoonfuls into greased muffin tins until cup is about 3/4 full.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.  Makes about 12 regular sized muffins or 24 mini muffins.


Monday, May 2, 2011

Yellow Squash Bisque

A great cold weather soup recipe from my mother-in-law. Add in a little extra cayenne to make it spicier!

Yellow Squash Bisque

6 tbsp butter
1 large onion, chopped
2 baking potatoes, peeled and sliced
2 carrots, sliced
4 c yellow squash, sliced
3 tbsp flour
1 1/2 quarts chicken broth
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp nutmeg
salt, pepper, and paprika, to taste
1/4 tsp pepper
1 cup whipping cream
In a four quart saucepan, melt butter.  Add onion, saute until clear.  Add potatoes, carrots, squash--toss to coat with butter.  Add flour, stir to combine.  Cook 3-4 minutes over medium heat, stir.  Slowly stir in broth.  Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper.  Cover, cook about 45 minutes until fork tender.  Puree soup in blender.  Return to soup pot.  Stir in cream.  Heat through, stir in nutmeg.  Cook 4-5 minutes.  Sprinkle with paprika. (You can freeze base up to one month.  Thaw, bring to boil.  Add cream, heat.)






Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Country Fried Steak with Gravy

A classic Southern dish is Country Fried Steak.  I think you have to be able to cook this meal to be a true Southerner.  I've been playing around with gravy some, but this was my first time trying cubed steak.  You may want to play around with the seasoning to get it where you want it, I will do that more next time I try this meal, but this is a good basic place to start.

Country Fried Steak with Gravy

cubed steak, 2 pieces
1 egg
2 cups flour, divided
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp black pepper
oil for frying
3 cups milk
Heat oil over medium heat in frying pan.  Break egg onto saucer, beat.  Mix 1 cup flour, salt, and pepper on large plate.  Dredge cubed steak in flour, then dip in egg.  Dredge cubed steak a second time in flour.  Drop into hot oil, cook 4-5 minutes on each side until golden brown.  Pour off hot oil until you have about 2-3 tbsp left.  Add 1 cup flour, mix with oil and brown mixture, lowering heat to low-medium low.  Add milk slowly  while constantly stirring until you get the amount of gravy you would like to make.  Cook on low-medium low, constantly stirring, until gravy is desired consistency (make take a little while to thicken, but cook it slowly).  Serve over rice.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Corn Casserole

I love corn!  Growing up, it was about the only vegetable I would eat, especially when my mom cooked fresh corn all day long.  This recipe is a new take on corn that I got from Betty, a family friend of ours.  It's a great side dish and works great for a pot-luck dinner!

Corn Casserole

2 can corn, drained
1 can chopped green chiles
1 8 oz block cream cheese
1 stick butter
cheddar cheese
Soften butter and cream cheese, mix together.  Add corn and green chiles, mix.  Place in 2 qt casserole dish, top with cheddar cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.


Monday, April 11, 2011

Chicken Pot Pie

This is a great chicken pot pie recipe that my college roommate Melissa gave to me.  I changed it a little to have 1 can cream of chicken and 1 can cream of potato just to give it a little more flavor.  It makes great left-overs!

Chicken Pot Pie

1 can cream of potato soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
15 oz Veg-All, drained
2 large chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
1/2 c milk
1/8 tsp sage
1/8 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 pie crusts
Mix first 8 ingredients together.  Spoon filling into pie crust and cover with other pie crust.  Press edges together.  Bake at 375 for 40 minutes.  Cool 10 minutes.


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Bang Bang Shrimp

I do not like shrimp, but Brent loves it!  So when he was traveling for work a couple of weeks ago, he brought home 15 pounds of fresh shrimp frozen into 5 pound blocks.  We gave 10 pounds away, but today I am attempting to cook my first ever shrimp recipe.

Bang Bang Shrimp (adapted from the Bonefish Grill recipe)

1 pound shrimp, deveined and peeled
1/2-3/4 cup corn starch
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup Thai sweet pepper sauce (Asian pepper sauce)
10-12 drops hot sauce
2 tbsp buffalo wing sauce
Mix mayo, pepper sauce, hot sauce, and wing sauce in a medium sized bowl.  Coat shrimp in corn starch.  Heat oil in deep fryer until very hot (about 350 degrees).  Drop shrimp in, cook 3 minutes.  Do not overcook (I learned my lesson the hard way!), literally cook them 3 minutes in very hot oil.  Remove from oil (they should be very, very light beige in color), place on paper towel.  Drop into sauce, coat.  Serve immediately.