Recent posts

Making home-cooked meals possible

Taco Salad

Taco Salad

  • 1/2 lbs ground beef
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 tbsp taco seasoning
  • 1/2 can Rotel (cilantro lime)
  • 1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 tbsp Cotija cheese 
  • 1 cup shredded lettuce
  • 1 cup crumbled chips (I love using cheese Doritos or cheese tortilla Pringles. You can really get creative on the type of chip you choose.)
  • Catalina salad dressing
  • Sour cream

(Serves 2 people)

Cook ground beef, onion, and green pepper with taco seasoning in a pan until well done.  While that is cooking, add Rotel and cheeses to large bowl and mix well.  Add meat to that same bowl and mix well.  Add lettuce and chips last and mix well.  Plate your dish.  Top with your desired amount of sour cream and Catalina dressing. 

Origin: http://www.food.com/recipe/dorito-taco-salad-343008

Bacon & Cheese Crusted Chicken

image image  

Bacon & Cheese Crusted Chicken

  • 2 Chicken breasts (cut in half length wise "butterfly" style)

Marinade:  (for 4 chicken breast halves)

  • 2 tablespoons Grey Poupon
  • 2 tablespoons mustard
  • 1/2 of a lemon (juice)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon Cavender's seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Mix ingredients for marinade in a large bowl and add chicken.  Marinate in refrigerator 1-3 hours (or overnight).

Crust: (for 2 chicken breast halves) (I only cooked 2 breast halves at a time)

 

  • 5 pieces of bacon (I use packaged already cooked bacon)
  •  1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • Ranch dry mix

Bake bacon 350 degrees until crispy on baking sheet lined with aluminum foil with a sheet of paper towel on top of foil and under bacon.  Dab bacon with paper towel once out of the oven.  Let cool.  Crumble bacon on a plate with cheese.  Mix bacon & cheese well and spread evenly on a plate.  Lay each piece of chicken on plate and pat down onto bacon/cheese with a fork. Flip and pat the other side of the chicken with a fork.  Place on baking sheet (topping chicken with rest of leftover bacon/cheese mix).  Sprinkle a little dry Ranch mix on top of each chicken breast.  Bake at 375 degrees 20 min.

I baked 2 breast halves one night.  I left the other 2 in the marinade in the fridge until the next night and baked them on the 2nd night.

Origin: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2009/01/ranch-style-chicken/

Beef Stew

image image  

Beef Stew

  • 2-3 lbs chuck roast (shoulder) cut into big chunks
  • 2 carrots peeled and sliced
  • 2 turnip roots peeled and diced
  • 3/4 of an onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • 2 oz tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire
  • pinch of sugar
  • 2-3 cups beef stock (3 cups if you like it soupy)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Add all ingredients to a slow cooker (Crock Pot) and stir together well.  Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

This a such a good hearty stew.  It's great for those of you who work full time like me who still want to cook a good meal.  I cut/prepared all of my ingredients the night before and refrigerated.  When I was just about to leave for work, I added everything to my slow cooker, and turned it on low and headed out the door.  It was completely ready when I got home.

Origin: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2013/01/sunday-night-stew/

 

Chicken Zucchini Enchiladas

image image

 

Chicken Zucchini Enchiladas

  • 1 chicken breast
  • 4 medium sized zucchinis
  • 1/2 green bell pepper chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 shallot (or 1/4 of a small onion)
  • 3 tablespoons of chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • Salt & papper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon margarine
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 can of enchilada sauce
  • About 1/2-1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
  • Green onion chopped
  • Light sour cream

Season chicken breast with chili powder, chipotle powder, and cumin (separate from above ingredients).  Just season it to taste (I cover the chicken lightly with all 3).  Broil chicken on a baking sheet for about 4-5 min on each side (depending on how thick the breast is. I sometimes butterfly slice the chicken so it will cook faster).  After chicken is cooked thoroughly, cut into small cubes.  Slice zucchinis in half length-wise and dig out the insides with a spoon to make a hollow boat.  Keep 1/2 of the zucchini insides and roughly chop.  In a saute pan, heat the margarine and olive oil.  Add peppers, onion, and zucchini insides cooking for 5-8 min. Add chicken, chicken broth, tomato paste, cumin, chili powder, oregano, salt & pepper (mix/stir well) and continue cooking for another 5 min.  Pour 1/4 can of enchilada sauce at bottom of baking dish.  Line the baking dish with zucchini boats.  Fill each zucchini with chicken/veggie mixture.  Top each zucchini with 1-2 tablespoons of enchilada sauce and cheddar cheese. Cover dish with foil and bake at 375 for 30 min.  Top with green onion and sour cream and serve.  (I also like to serve this with cilantro lime rice)

Origin: http://www.skinnytaste.com/2012/08/chicken-enchilada-stuffed-zucchini-boats.html

Chicken Alfredo Pizza

image  

Chicken Alfredo Pizza

  • Pillsbury pizza dough (found by cookie dough in grocery store)
  • Lite alfredo sauce
  • 1/2 medium onion chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 small can of black olives
  • 2 Roma tomatoes sliced thin and quartered
  • Mozzarella cheese or Feta cheese
  • Sharp cheddar cheese or Blue cheese
  • Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cooked shredded chicken breast (I broil my chicken 4-5 min on each side seasoned with pepper)

Roll pizza dough out onto baking sheet and bake as directed for about 8 min.  Top with alfredo sauce, chicken, onions, bell pepper, olives, tomatoes, and cheeses.  I will sometimes use feta instead of mozzarella and blue cheese instead of cheddar.  Either way is delicious!  After you add all toppings, bake for 5-7 min until crust is crispy on the bottom.

Origin: My own recipe

 

Baked sweet & sour chicken

image_2 (2) image_3 (2)  

Bake sweet & sour chicken

  • 1 tablespoon of margarine and 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion chopped 
  • 1 green bell pepper chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 whole carrot chopped
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup pineapple juice
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • Dash of cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • 2 raw chicken breasts

Heat margarine and olive oil in a skillet; add onion, peppers, and carrots sauteing 5 minutes over low-medium heat.  In a medium sized bowl, mix together, ketchup, pineapple juice, vinegar, sugar, soy, garlic salt, pepper, ginger, and cayenne.  Pour sauce into the onion/pepper/carrot mixture in saute pan cooking until it boils, stirring frequently.  Add pineapple chunks.  Cut raw chicken breasts into bite-sized chunks.  Add raw chicken to 13x9 baking dish.  Pour sauce/vegetable mixture over the chicken.  Bake at 400 covered with foil for 30 min.  Uncover and continue to bake about 5 minutes or until chicken is well done.  I serve with Jasmine rice.  I buy the Boil-in-a-bag jasmine rice that will cook in about 10 min.

Origin: http://www.cooks.com/recipe/jz9me339/sweet-sour-baked-chicken.html

 

Breakfast casserole

image  

Breakfast Casserole

  • 1 tube of turkey breakfast sausage
  • 1/2 of a medium onion chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 egg whites
  • 2 cups 2% milk
  • 2 teaspoons of Grey Poupon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 slices of Whitewheat bread (cubed)
  • 2 cups reduced fat cheddar cheese
  • 1 green or red bell pepper chopped

Cook and drain turkey sausage in a skillet over medium heat.  Add onion and bell peppers to skillet with turkey and continue cooking over low-medium heat.  While meat and veggies are cooking, mix eggs, egg whites, milk, mustard, and pepper together in a large bowl.  Stir in bread cubes and cheese to egg mixture.  Then add sausage and peppers to the mixture in large bowl and fold/mix together carefully without tearing the bread cubes too much. Pour into a 13x9 dish.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30-45 min or until golden on top.  You can also prepare this and refrigerate overnight.  If you do that, it's best to take it out of the fridge for about 20-30 min before placing in the oven to bake.

Origin: www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/Breakfast-Casserole

Broiled Speckle Trout with Blue Cheese Cream Sauce

image image image image  

Broiled Speckle Trout with Blue Cheese Cream Sauce

  • 2 speckled trout fillets (or any other mild fish)
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour (with 1 tablespoon of Tony's Chachere's added and mixed into flour)
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1-2 tablespoons Tony's Chachere's
  • 3 tablespoons Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Pour milk in one bowl.  Pour flour mixture onto a plate.  Mix Parmesan cheese, Tony's, panko, pepper, and olive oil together in a bowl and then pour onto a plate.  Dip fillets in milk, then flour, then milk again, and then press each filet into cheese/panko mixture on each side making sure the surface of the fish is almost completely covered.  Place each filet on a baking sheet covered with foil and into oven on broil 3 min on each side (on oven rack directly in middle of oven).  The crust of the fish should look golden brown.

Blue Cheese Cream Sauce

  •   1.5 teaspoons of sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon Riesling vinegar or any white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2-3 oz blue cheese crumbles
  • 2-3 tablespoons heavy cream

Add all ingredients to a small pot and heat over low-medium heat for 7-10 min stirring occasionally.

After fish is cooked and plated, add cream sauce on top of fish and serve.  I served with green beans and garlic bread.  I just butter bread and sprinkle with garlic powder and garlic salt and bake until toasted.

Origin: http://www.eccentriccharters.net/redfish-speckled-trout-recipes.htm (for fish)

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/blue-cheese-dressing-recipe/index.html (for sauce)

Chicken & Cheese Stuffed Tomatoes

image  

Chicken & Cheese Stuffed Tomatoes

  • 2 oz goat cheese
  • 2 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese
  • 2 oz feta cheese
  • 1/2 chicken breast cooked (I seasoned my chicken with Tony's Chachere's, Chili powder, and chipotle powder and broiled in oven 5 min each side.  After it was cooled, I shredded the chicken into small pieces.)
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • Tomatoes (I used 4 regular tomatoes and 4 roma tomatoes.  For the big tomatoes, cut top off like a pumpkin and dig out the insides.  For the roma tomatoes, slice in half and dig out insides.  Some people prefer the bigger tomatoes because it has more stuffing per serving, but some people prefer the roma ones because it is less stuffing per serving.  Either way, this stuffing should be enough for a total of 8-10 romas or 6-7 big/regular tomatoes.)

Mix all ingredients (cheese, chicken, and herbs) in a bowl.  Stuff into tomatoes with a butter knife.  Bake tomatoes at 400 degrees 20-30 min.

You could even prepare this ahead of time, refrigerate, and bake later the same day or next day.  This dish could be used as an entree, appetizer, or side dish.

Origin: My own recipe.

Balsamic Steak

image  

Balsamic Steak

  • Thinly sliced steak of your choice
  • 1/4 cup Balsamic vinegar
  • Salt & Pepper

Season steak with salt and pepper.  Spray pan with a light coat of olive oil and turn heat to low-medium.  Add half balsamic vinegar to pan and place steak on top of the vinegar.  Pour the rest of the vinegar on top of steak cooking for about 2-3 min depending on how thin the steak is and how well you like your steak. I had a pretty thin steak and I like my steak medium.  I cooked for about 2-3 min on each side.  Slice steak and serve!

Origin: http://www.marthastewart.com/313695/balsamic-skirt-steak-with-polenta-and-ro

 

Crawfish Fettuccini

image_1 (2) image (2) Crawfish Fettuccini

  • 1 whole green bell pepper chopped
  • 1/4 medium onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic diced/minced
  • 3 celery stalks chopped
  • 2 tablespoons margarine
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon of Tony Chachere's seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon Cheyenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups 2% milk
  • water as needed
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 6 oz pepper jack cheese cubes
  • 1 to 1 1/2 lbs crawfish tails (mine were leftover from a crawfish boil and were already seasoned)
  • 3/4 of 16oz package of fettuccini noodles

Melt margarine & olive oil together in large skillet on medium heat.  Add onion, garlic, peppers, and celery cooking until tender.  Add flour & seasonings, stirring for about 2 minutes.  Stir in milk; cooking until thickened.  Add soup & cheese stirring until it is mixed well and cheese is melted.  Add crawfish and cook a few more minutes allowing all ingredients to mix together well. Cook fettuccini as directed on box.  Pour sauce over noodles and serve.

I have also used frozen non-seasoned crawfish tails that I placed in a ziploc bag with seasoned water.  I seasoned the water with Zatarain's crawfish/crab boil dry seasoning, cayenne pepper, hot sauce, and Tony's Chachere's.  I let them soak for 6 hours in seasoned water in the fridge.

*You could also get creative with the type of soup you use.  You could use cream of celery instead of cream of mushroom, or interchange it with anything you think would pair well.

Origin: http://www.pauladeen.com/recipes/recipe_view/crawfish_fettuccini/