Monday, December 31, 2007

Baked Pasta with Chicken Sausage from Melanie

Adapted from Martha Stewart Everyday Food

Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium red onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 can (28 ounces) whole tomatoes with juice, lightly crushed with hands (or crushed tomatoes)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 pound rigatoni
10 ounces baby spinach (I double the amount of spinach - fresh or frozen)
12 ounces smoked chicken (or turkey) sausage, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/4 inch thick
6 ounces fontina (or mozzarella) cheese, 4 ounces cut into 1/2-inch cubes and 2 ounces coarsely grated
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic. Cook for another minute.

Stir in tomatoes and oregano; cook until tomatoes are falling apart, 10 to 15 minutes. Add cream; cook until warmed through, about 5 minutes. Season sauce with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cook pasta in the boiling water until al dente, according to package instructions. Add spinach, and cook just until wilted. Drain, and return contents to pot.

Add tomato sauce, sausage, and cubed fontina to pot; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Divide evenly between two shallow 1 1/2-quart baking dishes. Top with grated fontina and Parmesan. Bake until browned and edges are crisp, 20 to 30 minutes.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Beef Broccoli

Remove fat, gristle from 1 lb. Beef steak tenderloin.
Cut across grain in think 1/4" strips, abot 2 inches long.  Easier to cut if partially frozen.

Mix marinade:
5 TB Soy sauce
2 TB Corn Starch
1 1/2 TB sugar
1/2 tsp. garlic salt or powder (put on meat and set aside for 5-10 minutes)

Broccoli (As much as you want - 2 or 3 stalks) is cut into flowerets.  Pour 2 to 3 Tb oil in hot wok at 375.  Put broccoli on top of oil.  Sprinkle 1/2 tsp. salt, 1-2 tsp. sugar on broccoli and stir turning constantly until it is dark green (about 2 minutes).  Add 2-3 TB water.  Put lid on and steam for 2 minutes until crisp and tender.  Remove to serving bowl.  In same wok put 1-4 TB oil.  Add 1/4 cup sliced green onion.  Cook to lightly golden.  Drain off oil.  Add Beef with marinade mix and stir for a couple of minutes.  (you can add sliced mushrooms or water chestnuts if desired).  Stir for a minute and then add broccoli.  Mix thoroughly.  Serve with hot steamed rice.   

Honey Glazed Chicken Bake

2 lbs of diced uncooked chicken breast
1/3 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
4 TB butter
1/4 cup honey
3 TB lemon juice
2 TB soy sauce
1/2 tsp. ground ginger

Heat oven to 350.  In a shallow dish combine the flower and seasonings.  Dip each piece of chicken in flour mixture and coat evenly.  

Melt 2 TB butter in a shallow baking dish, large enough to accommodate chicken in a single layer.  Arrange chicken in pan and bake uncovered for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt remaining butter and add honey, lemon juice, soy sauce and ginger.

After chicken has baked the 30 minutes, turn each piece over and pour sauce mixture evenly over chicken.  Bake another 30 to 40 minutes basting frequently.

Serve over rice.  I usually double the sauce ingredients to make more to serve over the rice. 

Chicken Pot Pie

Crust: 1 15 oz. pkg Pillsbury refrigerated pie crust
1/3 cup margarine or butter
1/3 c chopped onion
1/3 c flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 cups frozen mixed veggies (thawed)
1 1/2 cup chicken broth
2/3 cup milk
2 1/2 to 3 cup shredded cooked chicken (I use rotisserie from the store)

Oven 425.  Prepare pie crusts as directed on package for 2 crust pie using a 9" pie pan.  Melt butter in medium sauce pan over medium heat.  Add onion; cook 2 minutes or until tender.  Add flour, s and p; stir until well blended.  Gradually stir in milk and broth, cooling and stirring until bubbly and thickened.  Add chicken and mixed veggies; mix well.  Remove from heat.  Spoon chicken mixture into crust lined pan.  Top with second pie crust.  Seal edges and flute.  Cut slits in top of crust.  Bake for 30-40 minutes or until crust is golden.  Let stand 5 minutes before serving.  

BBQ Briskett

Place Beef brisket in pan with 3/4 cup water, salt, pepper, onion slices, and liquid smoke.  Cook slow for 12 hours at 250.  Shred.  Add barbeque sauce.

Barbeque Sauce:
2 8oz. cans tomato sauce
1 small bottle ketchup
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
juice of 1 lemon
garlic powder
2 TB liquid smoke
1/2 tsp. tabasco
salt and pepper
1 large onion, chopped
1/2 cup butter
1 small bottle 7-up
1 TB mustard

mix and simmer

Peanut Chicken Kabobs

8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 cup cream of coconut
1/4 cup lime juice
2 TB vegetable oil
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

In bowl, combine marinade ingredients until well blended.  Slice chicken into 3/4 inch strips.  Place in marinade and stir until well coated.  Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours, or up to 24 hours.  Skewer chicken on thin wooden skewers.  Broil or grill chicken over medium heat for 2 or 3 minutes on each side.  Serve over rice with peanut sauce.  

Peanut Sauce: 
2/3 cup chunky peanut butter
2/3 cup water
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 TB cider vinegar
2 TB brown sugar
1/8 tsp. ground red pepper
2 cloves garlic, crushed

Blend ingredients together in small bowl.  

Chinese Chicken Salad

Serves 12

8 chicken breasts (I get rotisserie from the store)
1 lb asparagus, ends removed, cut into thirds diagonally
2 red bell peppers, cored and seeded
4 scallions, sliced diagonally
2 TB white sesame seeds, toasted

1 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup soy sauce
3 TB dark sesame oil
1 TB honey
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp. peeled, grated fresh ginger
1 TB white sesame seeds, toasted
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
4 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Shred chicken into bite-size pieces

Blanch the asparagus in a pot of boiling salted water for 3-5 minutes, until crisp-tender. Plunge into ice water to stop the cooking. Drain. Cut the peppers into strips about the size of the asparagus pieces. Combine the shredded chicken, asparagus, and peppers in a large bowl.

Whisk together all of the ingredients for the dressing and pour over the chicken and vegetables. Add the scallions and sesame seeds and season to taste. Serve cold or at room temperature.

BBQ Chicken Chop Salad

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup bbq sauce

Marinate chicken in bbq sauce, then bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.  Chop into pieces and refrigerate.

romaine lettuce, chopped
3 roma tomatoes, chopped
1 jicama, peeled and diced
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup frozen sweet corn, thawed
1/2 lb Monterey Jack cheese, grated

Combine chicken in a large salad bowl with salad ingredients and toss.  Serve with Ranch Dressing, additional BBQ sauce and crispy corn tortilla chips.

Southwest Chicken Pockets

2 cups diced cooked chicken
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 (4-ounce) can diced green chilies
1 TB chopped green onions
1/8 tsp. chili powder
1/8 teaspoon cumin
1 can refrigerated crescent rolls
3 TB butter, melted
1 cup dry seasoned stuffing, coarsely crushed (I just use bread crumbs)

In a large bowl cream together cream cheese, 1/2 cup softened butter, green chilies, green onions, chii powder and cumin.  Add chicken and combine; set aside.  Separate crescent rolls to form 4 rectangles, pressing seams together.  Place 1/2 cup of chicken mixture in the middle of each rectangle and roll up ends to cover filling.  Seal edges securely.  Dip each folded roll into melted butter and then carefully roll in stuffing (bread crumbs).  Place on baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.  Top with Blackbean Salsa.

Black Bean Salsa
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
8 ounces frozen corn
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 TB shopped green onions
2 TB chopped red onions
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 TB vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
salt and freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup chopped ripe tomatoes, drained

In large bowl, combine beans, corn, cilantro, green onions, red onions, lime ice, oil and cumin.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Cover and chill at least 2 hours or overnight.  Just before serving stir in tomatoes.  

BBQ Country Style Spare Ribs

4 lb. Spare ribs, cut off excess fat

1 cup water
1 cup catsup
2 tsp. salt
2 TB Worcestershire
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. dry mustard
1 cup sliced onion
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

Bake (covered) the spare ribs at 350 for 1 hour.  Drain liquid and pour sauce over the ribs.  Bake (covered) for 1 hour 30 minutes and then uncovered for 1 more hour.  The sauce should have thickened and the meat should be very tender.   

Sundried Tomato Artichoke Pasta

1 cup cooked shredded chicken
1/2 cup sundried tomatoes (packed in oil)
1/2 cup chopped artichoke hearts
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1 clove minced garlic
Red wine vinaigrette 
1 lb cooked spaghetti

saute the onions, garlic sundried tomatoes, and artichoke hearts (there should be enough oil from the sundried tomatoes) until onions are translucent.  Add chicken.  Toss the spaghetti with red wine vinaigrette.  Top with chicken mixture, sprinkle with parmesan cheese, and serve.

Bruschetta Chicken Bake

1 can (14-1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 pkg. (6 oz.) STOVE TOP Stuffing Mix for Chicken
1/2 cup water or chicken broth
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 ½ lb. chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
1 tsp. dried basil leaves
2 cup Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

PREHEAT oven to 400°F. Place tomatoes in medium bowl. Add stuffing mix, water and garlic; stir just until stuffing mix is moistened. Set aside.
PLACE chicken (I brown my chicken first) in 13x9-inch baking dish; sprinkle with the basil and cheese. Top with stuffing mixture.
BAKE 30 min. or until chicken is cooked through.

Crock Pot Continental Chicken

6 - 8 chicken breasts, boned
1 can cream of mushroom soup
8 slices cooked bacon
1 pkg dried beef
1/4 cup sour cream mixed with 1/4 coup flour

Arrange dried beef on bottom of greased crock pot.  Wrap each piece of chicken with a strip of bacon and lay on top of the dried beef.  Mix the soup and sour cream together, pour over chicken.  Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours (high:3-5 hours).  

Chicken Cashew

2 chicken breasts
4 oz. cashews
3 green onions, cut into pieces
Cut chicken into strips.  Set aside.

2 TB Soy sauce
1/4 t sugar
1 TB cornstarch

Heat wok to 375 (high).  Pour in 2 TB veg oil.  Add green onions.  As they turn darker green add chicken and sauce and cook for about 2 minutes.  Serve hot with rice.

Easy Chicken Cordon Bleu

2 pkg thin sliced chicken breasts
1 (15 ounce) can plain bread crumbs
8 slices deli ham
8 slices swiss cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup

Dip chicken in bread crumbs.  Place a slice of ham and a slice of cheese on top of chicken breast.  Roll chicken up and secure with a toothpick.  Place in greased baking dish.  Mix sour cream and soup - pour over chicken.  Bake at 350 for one hour.  


Not much to say about this one.  I brown the roast.  Then I put carrots, onions and halved potatoes at the bottom of a roasting pan and put the roast on top.  I put about 1/2 a cup of water in and then I sprinkle everything with a package of onion soup mix.  Cook at 350 for about 3 hours.  For me, the key to a great roast meal is the gravy.  Add beef bullion and water to taste (depending how much you want to make) to drippings.  Bring to a boil.  Add flour/water mixture to thicken.  My mama is the master of gravy.  I think it just gets better the more you do it.   It seems like we had this meal every other Sunday growing up and I loved every bite of it. 

Taco Soup

I believe my mom got this recipe from her friend Karen Rees... feel free to jump in here if you remember, mom.

Admittedly, the picture's not the most appetizing. I should have given it a prettier garnish, but it would sort of be a lie anyway because what I really do is smother it in shredded cheese and sour cream and eat every bite with a tortilla chip. And you don't want false pretenses do you? What kind of online relationship would we have then?

1 lb. ground turkey
1 onion
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 pkg Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing mix
1 16 oz stewed tomatoes, plain
1 16 oz stewed tomatoes, Mexican style
1 16 oz. pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 16 oz chili hot beans
1 16 oz corn, drained
1 15 oz can tomato sauce

Brown together turkey and onion. Add the remaining ingredients. Bring to boil, then simmer for 30 - 60 minutes to blend flavors.