Sunday, January 31, 2010

Jan 31

43. Ginger Glazed Mahi Mahi

So I have to ask where did the month go?? Wasn't Christmas just yesterday?
I was sure that this was going to be a flop with the 2 little ones. However I am not going to buy food since we are leaving for Mexico on sat morning.
To my shock Elise told me that this was her favorite thing she ever ate. I mean she will not cookies but she loved Mahi Mahi. Good luck finding at that on a kids menu somewhere. She ate all her fish and then some of mine too. Eli we had to use threats of no dessert and set a time limit!

*3 tablespoons honey
*3 tablespoons soy sauce
*3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
*1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root
*1 clove garlic, crushed or to taste
*2 teaspoons olive oil
*4 (6 ounce) mahi mahi fillets
*salt and pepper to taste
*1 tablespoon vegetable oil

In a shallow glass dish, stir together the honey, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, ginger, garlic and olive oil.
Season fish fillets with salt and pepper, and place them into the dish.
If the fillets have skin on them, place them skin side down.
Cover, and refrigerate for 20 minutes to marinate.
Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
Remove fish from the dish, and reserve marinade.
Fry fish for 4 to 6 minutes on each side, turning only once, until fish flakes easily with a fork.
Remove fillets to a serving platter and keep warm.
Pour reserved marinade into the skillet, and heat over medium heat until the mixture reduces to a glaze consistently.
Spoon glaze over fish, and serve immediately.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Jan 30.

42. Mac-n-Cheese

I know that this is not as fun and creative as some recipes I have posted, but do you know how hard it is to do things without the use of a right thumb? Its hard. Washing my hair was the hardest! Plus we went to see Wicked this afternoon and I didn't have a lot of time.

*1 package elbow macaroni
*1 3 cups package shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
*16 on. sour cream
*1/4 cup whipping cream
*1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
*salt and pepper to taste
*1 cup dry bread crumbs
*1/4 cup butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350.
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil, add pasta, and cook until done; drain.
In 9x13 inch baking dish, stir together macaroni, shredded Cheddar cheese, whipping cream, sour cream, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.
In a small bowl, mix together bread crumbs and melted butter.
Sprinkle topping over macaroni mixture.
Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until top is golden.

This is my own recipe as well!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Jan 29 There will be blood


I have a disclaimer for this blog. There will be blood. This is the first time I have ever had a cooking injury. It was a day of firsts for us. First Dave broke a plate this morning while unloading the dishwasher and it was the first plate we have lost since our wedding. We may have to go to our friends Jason and Alicia and steal one.
Then after I made the cookies I went to cut up some apple with my new and cute mandolin slicer...are you seeing where this is going? I was in a hurry and sliced my right thumb. I took a nickel size hunk out of my thumb. Thank the Lord Dave was home and was an EMT in a former life. It was really bad. He had to remove the hunk of thumb from the counter. I know....It was bad. So for dinner tonight there was no more cooking other than calling The Great Wall for take out Chinese food. However before the thumb slicing I made cookies.

*1/2 c. (1 stick) sweet cream butter (softened)
*1/2 c. sugar
*1 egg
*1/2 tsp. vanilla
*1 1/4 c. flour
*1/2 tsp. salt
*1/2 tsp. baking soda
*6 oz. pkg. Heath Bar Bits

Preheat oven at 350
Cream first 4 ingredients.
Beat until light and fluffy (3 or 4 minutes).
Add dry ingredients. Mix on low.
Stir in toffee. Drop from teaspoon on cookie sheet.
Cook for 10-12 minutes

I doubled the recipe and they are really good. Dave does not like toffee and said that these may have changed his mind.

So now I am scared to death of the mandolin. It is not as easy as the Food Network makes it look.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Jan 28

40. Penne Pesto with Chicken

I was worried about this one. I thought that the pesto being so green along with Broccoli would scare my kids. However I went ahead and tired it and was ready for the battle. I dished up the meal and held my breath. Imagine my shock when I set it down and they both ate it and liked it. Elsie ate all the Broccoli and never fought me at all. It was a shock to me as well.

*1 large bunch broccoli rabe....I used regular broccoli and it was great.
*1 box penne pasta
*2 cloves garlic, pealed and sliced
*9 Onces of fully cooked chicken, cut into bite-size pieces
*1 container Pesto (7onces)

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil
Add Broccoli and cook for 3 minutes
Scoop into bowl and add pasta to boiling water, cook 9 minutes
Heat 2 TBSP olive oil in a large skillet over a medium high heat
Add garlic and cook 2 minutes
Stir in broccoli and cook 3 minutes, season with salt and pepper
Drain pasta
Stir chicken, pasta and pesto into skillet
Cook 2 minutes
Serve warm

Eli is not a pasta eater....I know strange! However he even ate it without any threats tonight.
Also I got a new dutch oven with a lid so I am looking for things to make in that now!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Jan 27....the Dutch Oven drama

39. Barbecue Chili

This was so good. I love chili and I have to say that this is one of the best chili's that I have ever tasted. Dave agreed with me on this one as well. Elise even had a bite and told me it was ok. So high praise!
However it calls for a dutch oven. After nap time I got the kids ready and we went to target to get a dutch oven. I got the only one they had there and brought it home to wash it and use it....I open the box and there is no lid. Missing. Who does that happen to other than me? So tomorrow I will be taking it back to Target to try to get one that has a lid.

*1 TBSP Vegetable Oil
*1 lb ground beef (or turkey, venison....whatever!)
*1 cup chopped onion
*2 cloves garlic chopped
*1/4 cup chili powder
*1 TBSP Cumin
*1 can (16 on.) stewed tomatoes
*1 cup ketchup
*1/3 cup brown sugar
*1/4 cup molasses
*1/4 cup worcestershire sauce
*1 TBSP dry mustard
*2 can dark red kidney beans, drained
*2 cans pinto beans, drained
*1 can cannellini beans, drained

In a large dutch over, (thank Target) heat oil over a medium high heat
Add meat, onion, garlic, chili powder and cumin, cook stirring to break up the meat, about 10 minutes until meat is no longer pink
Stir in tomatoes, ketchup, brown sugar, molasses, worcestershire and mustard
Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally
Stir in the beans, cover and simmer for another 30 minutes, stirring occasionally
Garnish with Jalapenos, which we did not!!


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Jan 26

38. Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

this was awesome. Dave and I loved it and it had a kick to it. try it and let me know how you like it! Dave liked this stir fry better and I liked the one last week better.

*6 cups broccoli
*1 TBSP ginger
*1tsp plus 1 TBSP cornstack
*1 tsp garlic salt
*1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
*2 TBSP vegetable oil
*1 flake steak, about 2 lbs, thinly sliced
*1 head bok choy (this I also had to get at whole foods.)
*1/2 cup orange juice
*2 TBSP teriyaki sauce
*2 TBSP water
*2 medium scallions, trimmed and chopped
*3 cups chow mein noodles
*1/2 cup cashews

Bring a large pot of water to boil and add the broccoli
Cook for 2 minutes and take out of water
In a small bowl mix ginger, 1 tsp cornstarch, garlic and red pepper flakes
In a large skillet heat oil over a high heat
Toss the beef in the ginger mixture
Add beef to skillet and cook about 3 minutes or until no longer pink
Add the boy choy and broccoli cook for another 3 minutes
Meanwhile in a small bowl whisk the Orange juice, teriyaki sauce, water and 1 TBSP cornstarch
Add to the skillet
Cook until sauce is thick about 2 minutes
Remove from heat and add the scallion
Serve over chow mein noodles and top with cashews.

I am not sure that my kids would have eaten this. It had a kick to it.
Also the bread from yesterday was good. Elise told me that is was almost as good as Wendys bread. Almost!!!

Monday, January 25, 2010

jan 25 NO POWER

today was not the best day for me. First someone, who has too much time on their hands, hacked into my email and sent a letter saying I was trapped in Scotland and could all my friends and family send money. So I have had many calls and emails today to make sure I am safe and sound!
Then we got home from dance class and I had an awesome meal to make and our power went out. So awesome meal will be moved until tomorrow.
This was not the plan for today but here you go...

37. Sweet Honey French Bread

*3/4 cup water
*2 teaspoons honey
*2 teaspoons olive oil
*2/3 teaspoon salt
*2/3 teaspoon white sugar
*2 cups bread flour
*1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
*1 tablespoon honey (optional)

Add to your bread machine per manufacturer instructions.
While bread is baking, drizzle with honey if desired.
Original Recipe Yield 1 - 1 1/2 pound loaf

Since I was without power I will not know until morning what we think of this.
Since I should have been in Scotland maybe I will find something Scottish to make next week!! Forfar Bridies or Haggis anyone??

Sunday, January 24, 2010

jan 24

35. Lazy Day Braised Pot Roast

I know that there are strange people out there don't like Pot roast and to you I say...Why?? Our family loves a good pot roast and its so easy to make. We had my parents over for dinner and they really liked it. I used parsnips instead of carrots and my dad said that he thought carrots would have been better. My mom thought that the gravy was too sweet. Dave loved it and Elise did not have to go to bed early!!

*4 lb chuck roast, or pot roast
*1/2 tsp salt
*1/4 tsp pepper
*4 Large carrots cut into 3 inch lengths
*4 large potatoes, peeled and quartered
*1 large yellow onion
*2 bay leaves
*3 cups of water
*1/2 cup cider vinegar
*3 TBSP butter
*3 TBSP flour

Put the roast in a slow cooker and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Add the carrots, potatoes, onion and bay leaves
Pour water and vinegar over the meat and veggies
Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. (cooked for 6 and it was perfect
Transfer the meat and vegetables to a warm platter and cover with aluminum foil
Turn your slow cooker on high
in a small bowl mash together the butter and flour
Add it to the hot liquid and whisk until thick.

It was really good and needed no side dishes. I used fingerling potatoes and they were yummy!

36. Chunky path brownies

this was not really a hit. I thought that it was too sweet and I don't think that I would make it again, but I don't really like chocolate. I know...its a sin, I have been told!

*2 cups flour
*2 cups sugar
*1 tsp baking soda
*1/4 tsp salt
*1 cup butter
*1 cup water
*1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
*2 eggs
*1/2 cup buttermilk
*1 1/2 vanilla

*3 cups tiny marshmallows

*2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
*1/2 cup whipping cream
*1/4 cup butter

Preheat oven to 350
grease a 15x10x1 inch pan
In a large bowl mix flour, sugar, baking soda and salt
In a saucepan combine butter, water, and cocoa powder, bring to just a boil(stir the whole time)
Add the chocolate mixture to the flour mixture and beat until combined
Add eggs buttermilk and vanilla
Beat for a minute, the batter will be thin
Pour into pan
Bake 25 minutes
take out and sprinkle the marshmallows over hot brownie
then top with chocolate topper
In a saucepan heat the chocolate chips, whipping cream and butter over medium low heat until smooth!!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Jan 23

34. Corn Bread Hamburger Pie

this morning we were on our way to a preschoolers birthday party and I told my husband to pick what he wanted for dinner out of a cookbook. he picked this. Make sure you are ready to make what your husband picks!
Dave loved it, I liked it, Eli thought it was ok and Elise went to be bed at 7.

*1 lb ground beef
*1 medium onion chopped
*1 medium green pepper chopped
*1 package corn bread mix
*1 can condensed tomato soup
*1/4 cup salsa
*2 TBSP ketchup
*1 TBSP steak sauce

Preheat over to 400
Cook the beef, onion and pepper over medium heat until beef is no longer pink, cook in a an ovenproof skillet
Meanwhile prepare corn bread according to package directions and let stand 2 minutes
Stir in the other ingredients into beef mixture
Spoon corn bread mixture over beef
bake, uncovered for 15 minutes until lightly browned

I also added corn and black beans to this and it was good. I would also add taco mix the next time for a little kick.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Jan 22 Crying at dinner

33. Pan-Seared Shrimp

I am sure that you will see how dinner went by this photo....
While Dave and I thought that dinner was good, the kids did not seem to agree with us! As I type Elise is still in the dining room crying because she will not shallow a piece of shrimp. Its been almost an hour!

*2lb shrimp (extra large) peeled and deveined
*salt and pepper
*1/8 tsp sugar
*2 TBSP veg. oil
*2 TBSP unsalted butter
*1 TBSP Lemon juice
*1 TBSP parsley

Pat the shrimp dry then add the salt, pepper and sugar to the shrimp
Heat 1 TBSP oil on high heat until it is smoking
Add half the shrimp to the pan in a single layer until the shrimp are curled and pink on both sides (about 2 minutes)
Transfer the shrimp to a bowl and cover to keep warm
Repeat with the remaining shrimp
Off heat return shrimp to warm skillet
Add butter, lemon juice and parsley
Toss until coated

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Jan 21

32. Sesame Beef and Asparagus Stir-Fry

YUMMY!!!!!!! This was a a tad spicy but Elise really liked it. She is not normally a meat eater but she really liked the beef. Eli was not really a fan. It took them both a long time to get down the asparagus. Dave and I loved this. My dad was over for dinner and was raving about this as well. Try it!!

*1/4 cup soy sauce
*3 TBSP rice vinegar (its in the Asian isle, not with the other vinegars)
*2 TBSP hoisin sauce (this recipe says that its so easy to find. I had to go to Whole Foods to find it.)
*2 TBSP Brown Sugar
*1 TBSP ginger
*1 TBSP Sesame oil (which is yummy. How have I not used this before?)
*2 tsp cornstarch
*1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
*2 cups water
*2 packages of beef flavored ramen noodles
*4 scallions, trimmed and sliced
*2 TBSP vegetable oil
*1 LB beef sirloin, thinly cut across the grain
*3 cloves garlic, minced
*1 LB asparagus, diagonally cut into 1 &1/2 inch pieces
*1 TBSP sesame seeds

Mix together the soy sauce, hoisin sauce, brown sugar, ginger, 2 tsp sesame oil, cornstarch and red pepper flakes
In a medium pan boil water
Add the noodles and one seasoning packet, scallion and 1 tsp sesame oil
Remove from heat and let stand, covered
In a large skillet heat 1 TBSP of oil over medium heat
Add beef and garlic
Stir-fry for 3-5 minutes and remove from heat
In the same pan heat the remaining TBSP of oil
Add the asparagus, stir-fry for 2-4 minutes
Add the beef and soy sauce mixture to the skillet
Cook for a minute or until thickened
Sprinkle with sesame seeds!!

A word of advice....if you go to Whole Foods don't ask if they carry Ramen noodles. They do not and they will look at you like you are crazy!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Jan 20 4 preschoolers.....oh my.

31. Roast Pork with Apples

My good friend Jen came over tonight for dinner. We try to do dinner every week or so with all the kids. So along with Eli and Elise tonight, Alex (4) and Stephen (2) were here to sample. Jen and I liked this meal and when Dave got home he really liked it too. It was not a huge hit with the kids. We had to force them to eat the meat with threat of no brownies for dessert. I thought that since they like applesauce that they would like the apple but that was not the case.

*3-4 lb pork roast, trimmed of fat and blotted dry
*Salt and pepper
*6-7 tart cooking apples, peeled, cored and quartered (I left the peels on and liked them)
*1/4 cup apple juice, fruity white white or champagne
*1/4 cup packed brown sugar
*1 1/2 tsp ginger

Season the pork with salt and pepper
Brown the meat on all side in a skillet, or under the boiler
Combine the apple juice, brown sugar and ginger in a small bowl and spoon over the roast
Cover and cook on high for 1 hour
Reduce heat to low and cook until fork tender 7-8 hours.

I have found that my crock pot must cook faster. I only needed to cook it for 5 hours and it was fine.
I also used the apple juice because I am not using my good white wine on a crock pot. Right??
Eli asked me to make something with Tuna fish this Lord help me I am after a tuna recipe!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Jan 19 Bland

30. Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

I really do like the idea of Chicken Cacciatore. I honestly do, but I just don't love it in real life. I thought that I would give it another try. Maybe if I made it myself and saw what went into it, I would like it more.
So this morning I got out the slow cooker and gave it a whirl!
Guess what???? I still don't love it. Eli tasted it and looked at me as though I was asking him to eat glass. Elise liked it. Dave thought it was bland.

*4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
*2/3 (28 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
*1-1/3 green bell pepper, seeded and cubed
*5 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced
*2/3 onion, finely diced
*1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon minced garlic

Put the chicken in the slow cooker.
Top with the spaghetti sauce, green bell peppers, mushrooms, onion, and garlic.
Cover, and cook on Low for 7 to 9 hours.

To be fair to this recipe, I only had a yellow pepper so maybe the green pepper would have made it better.
Please try and see if you like it better!!!

ps....the bread was AWESOME!!!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Jan 18

28. Skillet Penne and Sausage Supper

As I said before my wonderful husband is always asking for sausage meals! This one was really good. As I was making it my daughter told me that the sun-dried tomatoes looked like worms and why would I want to eat that. Then as I was mincing the onion my eyes were really watering and Elise said, "I know Mommy. I would cry too if I had to eat that for dinner. Can I have pudding?" (that is the idea of what she said. She is in speech for a reason God love her!!)

*1 TBSP olive oil
*1 onion minced
*1 lb hot or sweet sausage, casings removed
*3 cloves garlic minced
*1/2 cup oil packed sun-dried tomatoes rinsed and chopped
*8 ounces penne (2 1/2 cups)
*2 1/2 cups chicken broth (I used low sodium)
*1/2 heavy cream
*5 ounces baby spinach
*1 ounce grated parmesan cheese (1/2 cup)

Heat oil over medium heat in non stick skillet (or as I call it a cooks best friend!!)
Add the onion and 1/2 tsp salt and cook until soften, about 5 minutes
Stir in sausage and cook, breaking up with wooden spoon for about 4 minutes or until no longer pink
Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant
Add the tomatoes and penne over sausage
Pour in broth and cream, cover and bring to boil
Reduce heat to Med. low and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally
Stir in the spinach and cook until wilted, about 2 minutes
Stir in cheese and season with salt and pepper

Now if you are like me then finding these sun dried tomatoes was a challenge. They were in produce by the real tomatoes but out store did not have the oil packed ones. I got the died ones and put them in some olive oil a few hours before hand. It worked out well. Dave said that this has moved into the number 1 spot on his list.

On the bread machine. My husband bought me an ice maker for Christmas and I bought him one, so I took his back and traded it in on a bread machine....

29. Chocolate Chip bread

*1/4 cup water
*1 cup milk
*1 egg
*3 cups bread flour
*3 tablespoons brown sugar
*2 tablespoons white sugar
*1 teaspoon salt
*1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
*1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
*2 tablespoons margarine, softened
*3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Place ingredients in the pan of the bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer.
Select 'Mix Bread' cycle or the setting that allows ingredients such as seeds or fruit to be folded into the dough; press Start.
Add the chocolate chips at the signal, or about 5 minutes before the kneading cycle has finished.
Remove loaf from pan to cool when bake cycle finishes.

To be fair we have not tried this yet as its still in the bread machine. I will let you know tomorrow if we like it. It smells really good and Eli and Elise loved watching the bread machine work. So to my friend JJ, I am pleased with the bread machine!!!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Jan 17 A Little Spicy

27. Thai Peanut Chicken

*2 cups uncooked white rice
*4 cups water
*3 tablespoons soy sauce
*2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
*2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
*1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
*3 tablespoons olive oil
*4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into thin strips
*3 tablespoons chopped garlic
*1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger root
*3/4 cup chopped green onions
*2 1/2 cups broccoli florets
*1/3 cup unsalted dry-roasted peanuts

Combine the rice and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, or until rice is tender.
In a small bowl, stir together the soy sauce, peanut butter, vinegar, and cayenne pepper. Set aside.
Heat oil in a skillet or wok over high heat.
Add chicken, garlic and ginger, and cook, stirring constantly, until chicken is golden on the outside, about 5 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium, and add green onion, broccoli, peanuts, and the peanut butter mixture.
Cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes, or until broccoli is tender, and chicken is cooked through.
Serve over rice.

So this may have been a tad too spicy for a 3 and 4 year old. Elise at one point was scraping her tongue with a napkin. However Dave, my friend JJ and I loved it. JJ added that she wants to make it with carrots, snap peas and so on. It was really good and make it, but be warned it has some heat in it and kids may not eat anything but the rice.

My friend Beth asked me for an older recipe that I did not post. So for you Beth....
Roasted Asparagus and Mushrooms (was number 11)

*1 bunch fresh asparagus, trimmed
*1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, quartered
*2 sprigs fresh rosemary, minced
*2 teaspoons olive oil
*kosher salt to taste
*freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Lightly spray a cookie sheet with vegetable cooking spray.
Place the asparagus and mushrooms in a bowl.
Drizzle with the olive oil, then season with rosemary, salt, and pepper; toss well. Lay the asparagus out on the prepared pan in an even layer.
Roast in the preheated oven until the asparagus is tender, about 15 minutes.

I dont think that I cooked them the whole 15 minutes. They cook really fast and they were really good!!!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Jan 16 Real Butter

26. Million-Dollar Pound Cake

One of my very best friends came to see us from Florida and I was not in the mood to cook tonight but I wanted to make something for her that I dont always make. So I made a pound cake.
When you see this recipe you will understand the real butter in the title.

*1 lb Butter, soften...thats right..1 POUND. that is 4 sticks
*3 cups sugar
*6 large eggs
*4 cups flour
*3/4 cup milk
*1 tsp vanilla
*1 tsp almond (I think that next time I would use a tad more.)

Preheat oven to 300
grease the inside of a bunt pan or tube pan
Beat butter until light yellow and creamy
Add in the sugar
Beat one egg at a time
Add flour alternately with the milk, end with the flour
Stir in the extracts
Bake for 1 hour and 40 minutes.
It is done with the toothpick come out clean

I used a bunt pan and I had to take out about a 1 maybe 1 1/2 cup of the batter. Maybe it will fit better in the tube pan.

I almost never make things like this and it was so good. I am going to freeze half of it. It is a big pound cake.
Serve with ice cream, fruit, whipped cream...and enjoy!!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Jan 15

25. Blondies

The third friday of the month our Y does free child care for members. So from 6:30-10, they will watch our kids. This means we go out for dinner and I dont cook!
I thought I would make something this morning for the kids.

*1 1/2 cups flour
*1 tsp baking powder
*1/2 tsp salt
*1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
*12 TBSP unsalted butter, melted and coolef
*2 large eggs
*4 tsp vanilla (I know...I had to read that twice too but it calls for 4)
*1/2 cup chocolate chips
*1/2 cup white chocolate chips
*1 cup toasted and chopped pecans

Preheat oven 10 350
Spray a 9x13 pan
Whisk the butter and brown sugar together
Whisk in eggs and vanilla
Stir in flour, baking powder and salt
Stir in chips
Pour in pan and bake for 22-25 minutes

Dave liked these better than anyone. Elise will not eat anything that looks like a brownie and not even really a cookie.
A special thank you to my sister, Meg for sending me a fun new cookbook. I cant wait to use it!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Jan 14 Dry Heaves

You may be wondering about the title of todays recipe!! What happened when you make a 4 year old boy eat Brussels Sprouts?? DRY HEAVING at the dining room table and the threat of early bed time. We finally got him to eat one. Elise ate one of her own accord but it took about 13 minutes for her to chew and shallow it.
Dave and I thought that it was good.

23. Breaded Brussels Sprouts

*1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts (I only used a pound)
*1 teaspoon salt
*4 tablespoons butter, melted
*4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
*4 tablespoons dried bread crumbs
*1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
*1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
*1/4 teaspoon seasoning salt

Wash and trim Brussels sprouts. Cut an "X", about 1/8 inch deep in the stem of the sprouts, (this helps cook the sprouts more evenly and quickly).
In a medium-size pot, cover Brussels sprouts with water, add 1 teaspoon salt and bring to boil.
Cover and simmer for 6 minutes or until tender; drain. Be careful not to overcook sprouts.
Place sprouts in a small casserole dish.
Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of melted butter over the sprouts and mix well to coat.
Combine parmesan cheese, dried bread crumbs, garlic powder, black pepper, seasoning salt and remaining butter and mix well; sprinkle mixture over sprouts.
Heat sprouts under broiler (about 4 inches away from heat) for about 5 minutes or until crumb mixture is lightly browned.
Serve hot.

First they will burn fast so watch them.
Second I love that it calls to serve hot. I mean can you just imagine serving cool Brussels sprouts to two preschoolers? They would have thrown them back at me. It was already a hard sell!

24. Chicken Breasts with Balsamic Vinegar and Garlic

*4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
*salt and pepper to taste
*3/4 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
*2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
*2 tablespoons olive oil
*6 cloves garlic
*1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
*3/4 cup chicken broth
*1 bay leaf
*1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
*1 tablespoon butter

Season the chicken with salt and pepper.
Rinse the mushrooms and pat dry.
Season the flour with salt and pepper and dredge the chicken breasts in the flour mixture.
Heat oil in a skillet over medium high heat and saute the chicken until it is nicely browned on one side (about 3 minutes).
Add the garlic.
Turn the chicken breasts and scatter the mushrooms over them.
Continue frying, shaking the skillet and stirring the mushrooms.
Cook for about 3 minutes, then add the vinegar, broth, bay leaf and thyme.
Cover tightly and simmer over medium low heat for 10 minutes, turning occasionally.
Transfer the chicken to a warm serving platter and cover with foil. Set aside. Continue simmering the sauce, uncovered, over medium high heat for about 7 minutes. Swirl in the butter or margarine and discard the bay leaf.
Pour this mushroom sauce mixture over the chicken and serve.

I forgot the butter at the end and it was still good. We both liked it. Eli informed me that it needed ketchup, but to a four year old doesn't everything? So this did not get a stamp of approval from the kids, but the adults liked it.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Harder than looks

Jan 13 Manicotti with Spinach and mushroom

You know how there are things that you think are really hard to make and then when you do it, you see how easy it is to make? That was not really case this. Maybe it will get easier the more you make them. The first one did not end well. I will explain after the recipe....

*1 box of Manicotti Shells, Unless you want to make your own pasta and good for you. Not for me!!
*2TBSP Extra Virgin Olive Oli
*6 on. chopped mushrooms
*1 clove garlic
*6 on. chopped spinach
*2 eggs
*15 on. ricotta cheese
*1/3 cup fresh basil
*1tsp salt
*1 jar of marinara sauce (I use Prego)
*1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 350
Cook Pasta for 7 minutes and then rinse with cold water.
In a skillet heat the oil and add mushrooms and garlic.
Saute for 5 minutes and stir occasionally
Then add the spinach and cook for another 5 minutes.
Mix the eggs, ricatta, basil and salt. Then stir in mushroom mixture.
Spread 3/4 cups sauce in the bottum on a 9x13 baking dish.
fill the manicotti and place in the dish
Pour the rest of sauce over the shells.
Bake covered for 30 minutes and then uncovered for another 5-10.

Now, here was the problem....filling the darn shells. I put the mixture in a gallon zip lock bag and cut a slit in the bottom to fill. The first hole was too large the mixture went everything and split the the shell. Can you say Trash?? So then I made a smaller hole on the other side of the bag and the my hands were cramping because that hole was too small. So maybe if I make it again I will get it right. By the end it took a longer time than I thought and my hand hurts!!
It was really good. My kids protested because they saw the mushroom and spinach. Maybe had they not seen that it would have worked better.
On a side note My friend Sondi made the chicken wellington and loved it. Hi Sondi!!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Jan 12

21. BBQ Chicken Calzone

This was so easy and we really liked it. There is almost nothing I like more than BBQ. I know that there is a lot of fighting about what BBQ is better and here is my there a bad BBQ?

*4 slices bacon
*1/2 small onion, chopped
*3 cups shredded, cooked chicken breast meat
*2/3 cup barbeque sauce
*1 (10 ounce) can refrigerated pizza crust dough
*1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
*2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Fry bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crisp.
Remove from the pan to drain on paper towels; crumble.
Add the onion and shredded chicken to the hot bacon grease in the pan.
Fry over medium heat until onion is tender.
Stir in 1/3 cup of barbeque sauce, and remove from the heat.
Mix in the cooked bacon.
Roll the pizza crust dough out onto a greased cookie sheet.
Press out to an even thickness, and then cut in half.
Divide the chicken mixture between the two pieces of dough, spreading on only half of each piece to within 1/2 inch of the edge.
Drizzle the remaining sauce over the filling.
Sprinkle the cheese and cilantro over the top.
Fold the uncovered portion of dough over the filling, and press the edges together with a fork to seal.
Bake for 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until browned to your liking.

Dave and I both really liked it and was easy to make.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Jan 11 The sweet smell of Salmon

Jan 11
20. Maple Salmon

I must admit that I am scared of cooking fish. I normally get everything ready and then have my husband make it. I hate over cooked and under seasoned fish. During this year I was going to overcome my fear and make more fish. It is a rare treat!!(inside joke!!)

*1/4 cup maple syrup
*2 tablespoons soy sauce
*1 clove garlic, minced
*1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
*1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
*1 pound salmon

Preheat oven to 400 degrees
In a small bowl, mix the maple syrup, soy sauce, garlic, garlic salt, and pepper.
Place salmon in a shallow glass baking dish, and coat with the maple syrup mixture. Cover the dish, and marinate salmon in the refrigerator 30 minutes, turning once.
Place the baking dish in the preheated oven, and bake salmon uncovered 20 minutes, or until easily flaked with a fork.

this was really good. Dave said that it made it up for the bad chicken last night!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

jan 10...bound to happen

Well, it was bound to happen at some point. If I was going to make 365 new recipes, there was going to be ones that we all hated. Maybe hate is too strong of a word, but we all really did not like one of tonights recipes. It sounded good in theory, but it did not pan out. I think that I made it right but it was just not a good recipe.

18.Apple Stuffed Chicken Breast
Now I know that my sister in law is saying "I told her I dont like fruit with meat." I will try something else soon.

19. Macaroni and Cheese
Now this was really good. I had to go off the recipe a tad.

*1 & 1/2 cups skim or law fat milk
*1 (15 ounce) can evaporated milk
*1 large beaten egg
*1/4 tsp salt
*Large pinch black pepper
*1 & 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese shredded
*8 ounces elbow macaroni
*2 TBSP parmesan cheese

Coat the inside of a slow cooker
Combine the milks, egg, salt and pepper with a whisk until smooth
Put the Parmesan Cheese on top.
Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours.

This is the recipe. I found that it cooks really fast. Like in an hour and so if you want to cook it the whole time double the milk and stir it a couple of times in he 3 hours.
Now, we all liked this a lot.
Let's see what tomorrow will hold.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Jan 9 The best cookies!

17. Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

ok...the drawback of this year is going to be the left overs!! So today Eli asked me to make cookies and I thought ok. That way we can have left overs for lunch and dinner and the cookies can be the recipe of the day. Plus I have been looking for a really good chocolate cookie for awhile. I hate a cookie that is not chewy. This is wonderful and the cookies really stay chewy, even when not warm.

*2 cups plus 2 TBSP flour
*1/2 tsp baking soda
*1/2 tsp salt
*1 & 1/2 unsalted butter melted (I did not have unsalted so I just took out most of the salt from above.)
*1 cup packed light brown sugar
*1/2 cup sugar
*1 large egg
*1 large egg yolk
*2 tsp vanilla
*1 & 1/2 cups of choc chips, semisweet

preheat oven to 325
In a medium bowl whisk the flour, baking soda and salt.
In a large bowl beat the melted butter and sugars on low until smooth.
Beat in egg and egg yolk and vanilla until combined.
Beat on law while mixing in the flour mixture.
Mix in the chips
Roll the dough into balls and lay on baking sheets (use your flour in the can!!)
Place about 2 inches apart
Bake for 15-20 minute (it was 15 in my oven) and half way through rotate your pan.
Take out of the oven and leave on the cookie sheet for about 10 minutes and then move to a wire rack to cool completely

So the egg and the egg yolk I thought was strange, but it says the extra yolk helps the cookie stay chewy and they were right!! Also the melted butter helps too. Whatever helped they were good. Elise turned down the offer for a cookie. I know Strange but she is not really s a sweets eater. Eli and Dave loved them!
On a side note my friend Rita made the whoopie pies and loved them as well. Please let me know if you try anything!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Jan 8

16. Rigatoni and Sausage

My husband and his family love the cured pork products so I am always on the lookout for good recipes calling for sausage. Elise being a true Jerozal will eat anything that looks like sausage or bacon! She is not big on other meats but this she will always eat.

*1 lb Sweet Italian Sausage (pork or turkey)
I used Pork since I had just been to Costco and picked up some!
*26-28 once jar of Tomato pasta sauce
*1 lb Rigatoni, UNCOOKED
*Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

I added some garlic powder, basil and oregano plus some salt and pepper.

Coat the inside of your slow cooker with cooking spray.
Brown the sausage over med-high heat
Pour the pasta sauce into the cooker.
Fill a the jar with water and pour that in too.
Add the Pasta and cooked sausage.
Stir together.
Cook on LOW for 3-4 hours. Do not over cook.
Half way through the cooking stir again.

Elise really liked this one. Eli told me that it was not as good as the stuff in a can and then practiced crossing his eyes at me during dinner. I will tell you that they both ate everything and that is good because they will be having it for lunch tomorrow!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Jan 7 Oh deer!!

Jan 7
15. Ground Venison Burgers

Now I know that this is not going to be one that everyone can or will try. My father in law gave us a lot of ground venison over thanksgiving. Its easy to cook with and it much better for you than beef. Since you cant go to our local BiLo to get the meat this may not be the recipe for everyone.

*1/3 cup mayonnaise
*1 teaspoon lime juice
*1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
*1/2 teaspoon grated lime peel
*1/3 cup chopped green onions
*3 tablespoons plain yogurt
*2 tablespoons finely chopped jalapeno pepper*
*1/2 teaspoon salt
*1/2 teaspoon pepper
*2 pounds ground venison
*8 hamburger buns, split
*8 slices Pepper Jack cheese

n a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, lime juice, mustard and lime peel; cover and refrigerate until serving.
In a bowl, combine the onions, yogurt, jalapeno, salt and pepper.
Crumble meat over mixture and mix well.
Shape into eight patties.
Pan-fry, grill or broil until meat is no longer pink.
Serve on buns; top with cheese and mayonnaise mixture.

I added a touch of bread crumbs to hold the meat together better.
The mayo mixture was great. Even if you dont want to try the venison try the mayo mix. It was good.
The kids ate this with us. So I did not use the jalapeno peppers or put the pepper jack cheese on theirs. Eli told me that he really liked it. Elise had to be made to eat, but since right before dinner she shallowed a marble maybe she was full. (She seems to be fine since the marble but we will watch her!!)

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Jan 6

Todays recipe:
13- SouthWest Dressing
*1 cup ranch dressing
*1 cup honey BBQ sauce
Just mix together and serve over salad. Add corn and black beans to the salad for a treat.

It was easy I almost feel guilty counting this.

14- Chicken Wellington
*2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
*2 teaspoons butter or margarine
*1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
*1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
*1 tablespoon chopped green onion
*1/8 teaspoon salt
*Dash pepper
*1 (4 ounce) package refrigerated crescent rolls

Preheat over to 350
In a skillet, cook chicken in butter 3-4 minutes on each side. (what I did was cut the chicken up before I placed it in the skillet. After it cooked to threw the mushrooms in with it to cook for a few minutes.)
Place chicken in a greased 3-cup baking dish.
In a bowl, combine cream cheese, mushrooms, onion, salt and pepper. Spoon over chicken.
Unroll dough into one long rectangle; seal seams and perforations. If necessary, trim dough to fit top of dish and patch together by overlapping edges. Pinch edges to seal. Place over filling.
Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes or until heated through.

While I was making this tonight Eli told me that it looked "bad" and he hates mushrooms and pickles! I will keep that in mind.
Tomorrow is the start of them eating with us and what we eat. (My husband works late monday, tuesday and wednesday, so they catch a break!!)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Jan. 5

I need to go back to the whoopie pies. I have had some people ask me for this recipe and they were wonderful.
so here you go!!
*1/2 cup (1 stick) butter at room temp. (if you make sure that the butter is at room temp and not melted our cookies will not spread.)
*1 cup sugar
*1 1/2 tsp baking soda (I used a little less)
*1/2 tsp baking powder
*1 egg
*1 tsp vanilla extract
*1/2 cup cocoa powder
*1 cup milk
*2 cups flour

Marshmallow filling
*1/2 cup butter at room temp
*1 and 1/2 cup powder sugar
*1 jar of marshmallow fluff
*1tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 375 and spray the cookie sheets. (I really like the flour in a can)
Beat the Butter, sugar, baking soda and baking powder until light.
Mix in the egg, vanilla and cocoa. (At this point it will be very thick...dont worry!!)
Slowly beat in the milk and flour alternating between the two.
Beat until smooth
Drop the dough by the TABLESPOON. (this is make them the right size and not too big)
Bake for 7 to 8 minutes until they spring back to the touch. Dont overcook!
Cool on a wire rack
When cool put the filling on the back of one cookie and place the second on top. (I put the filling in a large zip lock bag, cut a slit into the corner and that way you will be able to spread the filling easy and not get everything messy!!)

Today Recipe 12
12. Chicken Taco Soup

*1 onion, chopped
*1 (16 ounce) can chili beans
*1 (15 ounce) can black beans
*1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
*1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
*1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle beer
*2 (10 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
*1 (1.25 ounce) package taco seasoning
*3 whole skinless, boneless chicken breasts
*shredded Cheddar cheese (optional)
*sour cream (optional)
*crushed tortilla chips (optional)

Place the onion, chili beans, black beans, corn, tomato sauce, beer, and diced tomatoes in a slow cooker. Add taco seasoning, and stir to blend. Lay chicken breasts on top of the mixture, pressing down slightly until just covered by the other ingredients. Set slow cooker for low heat, cover, and cook for 5 hours.
Remove chicken breasts from the soup, and allow to cool long enough to be handled. (be careful that your dog does not get the chicken. That has happened here!!!) Stir the shredded chicken back into the soup, and continue cooking for 2 hours. Serve topped with shredded Cheddar cheese, a dollop of sour cream, and crushed tortilla chips, if desired.
Dave said that he liked it better with sour cream. I liked it better without.
As I was putting this in the Crock Pot Elise looked at it and said "I hope I dont have to eat that." They did not!!

Monday, January 4, 2010

chicken and dumplings

to back track a few days.
I started Jan. 1 and in one day made 6 new things.
1. Ribs
2. Potato Salad
3. Brownies
4. Chocolate ice cream
5. apple sauce
6. Red Pepper dip.

The dip was really good.
*1 jar of roasted red peppers (I had to ask where they were in the store)
*1 cup was feta cheese
*a couple cloves of garlic crushed
*2 TBSP olive oil
Put in the food processor (I know I never use mine either. It was a wedding gift and I have used it about 5 times) and pulse for about a minute.
Serve with pita chips.

Dave and I loved it. My kids told me it was gross.

Jan 2- Elise and I both got a stomach bug and there was no cooking

Jan 3-
7.Chicken and dumplings
8.Roasted Broccoli
9. whoopie pies

Chicken and dumplings were the stand out....

*4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
*2 tablespoons butter
*2 (10.75 ounce) cans condensed cream of chicken soup
*1 onion, finely diced
*1 can of peas and carrots
*2 (10 ounce) packages refrigerated biscuit dough, torn into pieces

Cut the chicken into strips and place in the crock pot. Mix the butter, soup, veggies and then cover with chicken broth or water (I used broth and it was great)
cook for 6 hours on high. About 90 minutes until its done take the biscuit out and break into pieces and dump on top. Cover and cook.
Its wonderful. Dave said one of his favorites ever.
Elise hated it and went to bed early after she chewed a piece of broccoli and spit it on the dinging room table. Eli thought it was not as good as Wendys. Oh Well!

Jan 4-
10. Baked Pork Chops -not that wonderful
11. Roasted Asparagus and Mushrooms

11 down!!!

How it started....

By the demand of my husband and those 6 friends who wanted to see this, I am starting this blog. I never thought I would blog anything. I mean who cares about my life?? Then I had this idea.
I was going to cook 365 new recipes in a year. I mean I have all these wonderful cookbooks. I have tons of them in my kitchen. My wonderful sister in law gives them to me for my birthday. (thanks Jen!) I love to read them. I subscribe to cooking magazines and am always looking at cooking web sites. I find a couple of great things to make and then I fall into the rut of just making those things. Don't we all? I am sure that I am not the only one guilty of that.
So, this was my year to change it. I am going to make 365 new recipes. I am going to cook things I never thought I would make. I am also, in the process, going to make my kids eat with us for dinner and eat what I make. Done with the corn dogs and nuggets!! It was a great idea until I sat down to plan the first week and made the list of what to buy. It takes a lot of planning!
So, join me in the ups and downs. The great things I make and not so great things. I will post recipes, photos and what my kids think of eating things like salmon!