Friday, November 30, 2007

Chicken Enchiladas

These turned out pretty good. DH proclaimed that this was the best Mexican I had ever made for him.


1 lb boneless skinless chicken tenderloins
6 oz reduced fat sour cream
6 oz Ranch salad dressing
4 flour tortillas (I used 7 inch in diameter ones)
Shredded Mexican cheese

Cook chicken breasts in EVOO over medium heat until no longer pink. Preheat oven to 375. In a large bowl, mix the sour cream and Ranch dressing together until well mixed. Shred or chop the cheese into bite size pieces. Add to the bowl and mix well. Grease a casserole pan. Place the chicken mixture into the center of 4 tortillas in equal parts. Top the chicken with salsa to taste and cheese to taste. Roll up each tortilla and place, seam side down, into casserole dish. Bake the tortilla for 20 minutes. Top with salsa and cheese. Return to the oven and bake and additional 5 - 10 minutes.

These enchiladas are so big and thick that DH and I could only eat one each, so for us, the recipe made 4 servings.

Spaghetti with Cheesy Meatballs

I love spaghetti, and these meatballs are really great. Anything cheesy is good with me. I served this with Italian salad. The meatballs are so filling, we could barely eat half our plates.


1 lb extra lean ground beef
1/2 cup (1/2 slice) bread crumbs
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 onion, diced
2 - 3 Tablespoons Romano cheese
2 - 3 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup Mozzarella cheese
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon basil
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 can spaghetti sauce
Spaghetti noodles


Preheat oven to 400. Cook spaghetti noodles according to package directions. In bowl, mix all ingredients except spaghetti sauce and noodles. Shape into 1 inch balls. Places in a large greased dish. Bake 20 - 25 minutes. Meanwhile, heat spaghetti sauce in pan over medium heat. When meatballs are fully cooked, place into pan with spaghetti sauce. Cover and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. Serve spaghetti sauce over noodles.

4 servings

Emergency Spice and Herb Substitutions

I need these, because I often start a recipe and then realize I don't have all the necessary spices. Instead of leaving a spice out, use this list.

When a recipe call for fresh herbs and you only have dried, here's the trick: 1 Tablespoon fresh herbs is equal to 1 teaspoon dried herbs.

Allspice: Cinnamon, Cassia, or 1/2 amount of nutmeg or mace

Aniseed: Fennel Seed

Basil: Oregano or Thyme

Cardamom: Ginger

Chervil: Tarragon or Parsley

Chili Powder: 1/3 amount equal parts Hot Pepper Sauce, Oregano, and Cumin

Chive: Green Onion, Onion, or Leek

Cilantro: Parsley

Cinnamon: 1/4 amount Nutmeg or Allspice

Cloves: Allspice, Cinnamon, or Nutmeg

Cumin: Chili powder

Ginger: Allspice, Cinnamon, Mace, or Nutmeg

Italian Seasoning: Equal blend of Basil, Oregano, Rosemary, and Ground Red Pepper

Mace: Allspice, Cinnamon, Ginger, or Nutmeg

Marjoram: Basil, Thyme, or Savory

Mint: Basil, Marjoram, or Rosemary

Nutmeg: Cinnamon, Ginger, or Mace

Oregano: Thyme or Basil

Parsley: Chervil or Cilantro

Poultry Seasoning: 1/2 part Sage and 1/2 part equal blend of Thyme, Marjoram, Savory, Black Pepper, and Rosemary

Red Pepper: 1/4 amount of Hot Pepper Sauce

Rosemary: Thyme, Tarragon, or Savory

Saffron: 1/4 amount of Turmeric

Sage: Poultry Seasoning, Savory, Marjoram, or Rosemary

Savory: Thyme, Marjoram, or Sage

Tarragon: Chervil, or 1/2 amount Fennel Seed

Thyme: Basil, Marjoram, Oregano, or Savory

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Emergency Ingredient Substitutions

UPDATED!!!! This is not a recipe, but its something I had to share! These can be used when you start a recipe, and then you suddenly realize that you don't have all the necessary ingredients. I just had to share this. Every cook should have a copy of this list in their kitchen.

Baking chocolate: For 1 ounce, mix 3 Tablespoons cocoa with 1 Tablespoon shortening

Baking powder: For 1 teaspoon, mix 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar with 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Buttermilk: For 1 cup, mix 1 Tablespoon vinegar with milk to make 1 cup OR mix 2/3 cup plain yogurt with 1/3 cup milk

Cake Flour: For 1 cup, use 7/8 cup all purpose flour

Cornstarch: For 1 Tablespoon, use 2 Tablespoons all purpose flour

Corn syrup: For 1 cup, mix 1 cup granulated sugar with 1/4 cup water

Cream: For 1 cup, mix 1/2 cup butter with 3/4 cup milk

Garlic clove: Use 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic seasoning OR 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

Honey: For 1 cup, mix 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar with 1/4 cup water

Lemon juice: For 1 teaspoon, use 1/2 teaspoon vinegar

Milk: For 1 cup, mix 1/2 cup evaporated milk with 1/2 cup water

Molasses: For 1 cup, use 1 cup honey (and vise versa)

Mustard: For 1 Tablespoon, use 1 teaspoon dry mustard

Onion: For 1 small onion diced (or 1/3 cup diced onion), use 1 teaspoon onion powder

Ricotta cheese: For 1 cup, mix 1 cup cottage cheese with 1 Tablespoon skim milk

Sour cream: For 1 cup, use 1 cup plain yogurt (and vice versa)

Sugar (granulated): For 1 cup, use 1 cup brown sugar OR 2 cups powdered sugar

Sugar (brown): For 1 cup, mix 3/4 cup granulated sugar with 1/4 cup molasses or honey

Tomato sauce: For 2 cups, mix 3/4 cup tomato paste with 1 cup water

Yogurt: For 1 cup, use 1 cup buttermilk

Source: Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook

Monday, November 26, 2007

Pork loin roast

This turned out really well, but the recipe made so much that we ended up eating the leftovers for days. DH said 2 thumbs up!


1 (3-4 lb) boneless pork loin roast, trimmed
6 medium carrots, peeled and quartered
3 large baking potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 1/2 onions, sliced
1 1/2 cups (1 can) beef broth
1/3 cup flour
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon onion salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon caraway seed
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt


Mix oregano, onion salt, pepper, caraway seed, and garlic salt. Rub over roast. Wrap the roast in plastic and refrigerate overnight. Place carrots, potatoes, and onions in slow cooker. Add broth. Unwrap roast and place in slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours. Reduce heat to low and cook 6 hours longer. Transfer roast and vegetables to serving platter. Pour broth into sauce pan. Mix 1/3 cup cold water and flour until smooth. Stir into broth. Boil and whisk for 2 minutes. Serve over roast.

12-14 servings.

Source: Taste of Home magazine

Spicy Chicken and Peppers

Hmmmm good. DH and I loved this one. The name is a little misleading, because although it definitely has a kick to it, its not too spicy.


1 lb boneless skinless chicken tenderloins
1 1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
1 cup diced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon olive oil
15 oz can tomato sauce
14 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 cups egg noodles


Cook egg noodles according to package directions. Meanwhile, in skillet, cook chicken, green peppers, garlic, and onion in olive oil. When chicken is cooked, stir in tomato sauce, tomatoes, and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook uncovered for 10 minutes. Serve over egg noodles.

4 servings


These make a great appetizer or a side dish with pasta.


6 slices of bread
1/4 cup EVOO
6 oz cream cheese
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tablespoons basil
1 cup diced tomatoes
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Optional: 1 cup chopped black olives


Mix EVOO and garlic. Spread over one side of bread. Bake 8 - 10 minutes at 400. Cool for 10 minutes. Mix cream cheese, Parmesan, (and black olives). Spread over bread. Top with tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella cheese. Return to oven for about 5 minutes, until cheese melts.

6 servings.

Slow Cooker Steak Burritos

All I can say is these are great. Just leave them in the crock pot all day, and dinner is ready when you get home. This recipe make 10 burritos, so you may want to half it.


2 beef flank steaks (about 1 lb each)
2 packages taco seasoning
1 medium onion, diced
1 can (4 oz) green chilies
1 Tablespoon vinegar
10 flour tortillas
1 1/2 cups (6 oz) shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes
3/4 cup sour cream


Cut steaks in half and rub with taco seasoning. Place in slow cooker coated with non-stick cooking spray. Top the steaks with onions, chilies, and vinegar. Cover and cook on low for 8 - 9 hours until meat is tender. Remove steaks and cool slightly. Shred steaks with two forks. On tortillas, spread sour cream. Top with steaks, onions, chilies, cheese, and tomatoes.

Makes 10 tortillas.

Source: Taste of Home magazine

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Smothered Pork Chops

These are great. Its a classic recipe that everyone will love.


2-3 pork chops
1/3 cup flour
1 Tablespoon onion powder
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup sour cream


Mix flour, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne, salt, and pepper with fork in shallow bowl. Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat. Dredge the pork chops in flour mixture. Shake off excess. Fry until cooked thoroughly, about 4 minutes on each side. Remove chops. Add remaining flour and chicken broth to pan. Cook about 2 minutes. Stir in butter milk and sour cream. Simmer about 5 minutes. Return chops to pan for 1 minute. Serve pork chops with sauce mixture on top.

2 servings.

Source: Tyler Florence -

Buttermilk Cheese Potatoes

It was clean out the fridge time, and I had these potatoes that needed to be eaten. They turned out really good.


2 Tablespoons butter
4 red potatoes, peeled and sliced
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 cup (6 oz) shredded cheddar cheese
Parsley flakes


Melt butter in skillet. Cook potatoes until lightly browned. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pour buttermilk in pan over potatoes. Boil gently until the buttermilk is absorbed. Sprinkle with cheese and allow to melt. Stir well and sprinkle with parsley.

4 servings.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Rice Crispy Treats

I made this for DH, because he said he was craving "something sweet." It turned out great, and I got to combine DH's two favorites - chocolate and peanut butter - with ingredients I already had around the house.


4 cups (30 large) marshmallows
3/4 cup peanut butter
4 cup Rice Crispy's
4 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chocolate chips


Melt butter, peanut butter, and marshmallows in pan over medium heat. Grease a casserole pan. When everything melts, add the rice cripsy's and chocolate chips. Mix and pat into greased pan.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

I also made these for our potluck luncheon at work. This was my first time trying the recipe. I liked them, but they were very very sweet. The cream cheese frosting tasted more like candy than cake frosting. However, I would still recommend them, as most people liked them.


2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 bag chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Cream the eggs and the sugar together in a bowl. Stir in the oil and pumpkin. Mix well. In a separate bowl, sift all the dry ingredients together. Stir into the pumpkin mixture, and mix well. Pour into greased cupcake pan (or you can use the liners). Bake for 10 - 15 minutes, until knife in center comes out clean. Let cool for 1 hour.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

8 oz package cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
4 cups powdered sugar
1 - 2 teaspoons vanilla

Cream butter and cream cheese together in mixer. Add in powdered sugar and vanilla. When the cupcakes are cool (after about 1 hour), frost with the frosting.

This recipe makes about 20 - 24 muffins.

Source: Bliss~Felicite cooking blog -

Squash Casserole

I made this for a potluck luncheon we had at work. I can't remember where I got this recipe at, but I've made it several times, and it is always a crowd favorite. It really is the best squash casserole recipe I've ever made. I made 2 pans - one for work and one for me at home :) If you are only making it at home, you will probably want to half this recipe. The portions set out below make about 16 - 18 servings.


1 box cornbread mix
6 eggs
2 sticks (1 cup) butter
1 onion, diced
2 cans sweet cream corn
3 lbs (8 – 10) squash, sliced
¼ cup sugar
8 oz. cheddar cheese
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon garlic salt
½ teaspoon pepper


Preheat oven to 350. Boil squash in water for 8 – 10 minutes, but not more than 15 minutes. In bowl, mix all ingredients, stirring well. Add additional seasonings if needed. Pour into 2 small greased (or 1 large greased) dish. Bake for 45 minutes.


This is one of my favorites. Its not very pretty, but it tastes great. Its so easy to make - just mix up the ingredients and pop it in the oven. I usually help myself to two servings.... DH likes it too :)
1 1/2 lbs. extra lean ground beef
1 tomato, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1 bread slice, torn into small pieces
1/4 cup milk
1 egg
8 oz can (1 cup) tomato sauce
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 Tablespoons mustard
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 Tablespoons parsley
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 375. Mix all ingredients together. Form the meat mixture into a greased pan. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour.
4 - 6 servings.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Salsa Chicken

I had a lot of left-over salsa from the other night that I wanted to use. I created this easy recipe using some ingredients I already had around the house. DH ate two huge plates full, so I'm pretty sure he liked it.

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts (2 breasts)
1 package Spanish rice (I used Zatarains)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can corn, drained
1 cup salsa
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Spices to taste (cumin, cilantro, salt, pepper)

Preheat oven to 375. In a greased casserole pan, place the uncooked rice, the seasoning packet that come with the rice, and 1 1/2 cups of water. Mix well. Stir in can corn (drained) and diced tomatoes (with juices). Place the two chicken breasts in the pan on top of the rice. Season the chicken with spices. (I used about 1 teaspoon each of cumin, cilantro, salt, and pepper). Top each chicken breast with 1/2 cup salsa. Cover the dish with aluminum foil. Bake covered for 45 - 50 minutes. Top the salsa chicken with cheddar cheese. Return to oven and bake uncovered for an additional 10 - 15 minutes.
2 servings. I served this with Velveeta shells and cheese (DH's favorite side dish).

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Chicken Fingers with Honey Mustard Sauce

I also made these chicken fingers for family. The recipe I got for these looked good, but I made several changes to the recipe. The dipping sauce is also delicious. I doubled the recipe listed below.

Chicken Fingers:

1 lb boneless skinless chicken tenderloins
1 Tablespoon honey
2 egg whites, beaten
2 cups crushed honey graham crackers (I put them in a bag and hit with a hammer)
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Preheat oven to 450. Mix egg whites and honey in shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs and pepper. Dip each tenderloin into the egg/honey and then into the graham cracker crumbs. Shake off any excess. Lay on greased cookie sheet. Bake for 11 - 13 minutes or until done.

Serve with honey mustard sauce.
Honey Mustard Sauce:
1/4 cup honey
4 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Mix all ingredients together and chill for at least one hour.
Serve with chicken fingers.

Homemade Salsa

I made homemade salsa as an appetizer for my family before my brother's football game. It turned out pretty good, but it wasn't very hot - I would probably characterize it as mild. Add more crushed red pepper flakes to make it hotter.


2 tomatoes, diced into small pieces
1/2 - 3/4 can corn, drained
1 small red or purple onion, diced
1/3 cup lime juice
1/8 cup EVOO
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup cilantro
1/8 cup chopped parsley flakes
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Optional: 1 can black beans, drained
Mix all ingredients together and chill over night.
Serve with tortilla chips.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Hamburger Stroganoff

This is DH's very favorite meal. Its really easy to make, and since he love it so much, I end up making at least once a month.
1 lb extra lean ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 lb sliced mushrooms
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup fat free sour cream
1/4 cup butter
2 Tablespoons flour
2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon paprika
Egg noodles
Cook egg noodles in salt water according to package directions. Saute the onions in butter for about 2 minutes. Add the ground beef and mushrooms. Cook until beef is done, and drain. Add garlic, salt, pepper, paprika, and flour. Stir and saute about 1 minute. Add the soup and 1/2 - 1 can of water. Reduce heat to medium and simmer 10 minutes. Stir in sour cream. (At this point, I had to add some additional salt and pepper for taste). Serve immediately over egg noodles.
This makes enough for dinner for 2 and some left over for lunches. I served this with cheese biscuits, see below.

Jim N Nicks Cheese Biscuits

DH and I love the cheese biscuits at Jim N Nicks. I searched the web until I finally found a recipe for them. These were very good, and they taste just like the ones at Jim N Nicks.


1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 cup milk (2% works best)
1 egg, beaten well
4 Tablespoon butter, softened
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon vanilla


Mix all ingredients together. Pour into greased muffin pan and bake at 400 for 15 - 20 minutes.

This recipe make about 12 muffins.


Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Chicken with Wild Mushrooms and Balsamic Cream Sauce

When I read this recipe, I knew it would be delicious, and it was! DH and I loved it. This recipe is a keeper. It only takes about 30 minutes, but tastes like it has been simmering for hours.

<-- Chicken cooking in the pan

1/2 lb orzo pasta or rice (I used whole grain wild brown rice)
1 lb boneless skinless chicken tenderloins
1/2 lb (1 pkg) white mushrooms
2 shallots, thinly sliced (I left these off)
2 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons flour
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
3 Tablespoons heavy cream or half-and-half
1 Tablespoon Balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoon EVOO
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 Tablespoon thyme
Cook the pasta/rice in salt water according to the package directions. Preheat EVOO in skillet over medium heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Cook the chicken in the EVOO for about 7 - 10 minutes until cooked. Remove the chicken from the pan and keep warm. In pan, melt butter and cook mushrooms 4 - 5 minutes. Season the mushrooms with salt and pepper. Add shallots, garlic, and thyme to the pan. Cook 2 minutes. Add the flour and cook 1 minute. Whisk in the broth, vinegar, and cream. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer of medium-low for about 5 minutes, until the sauce thickens. Add the chicken back to the pan. Serve the chicken and sauce over the pasta/rice.
2-3 servings. I served this with sweet rolls and cream corn.
Source: This is a Rachel Ray 30 minute meal!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Pizza Roll

I always make lunch for DH to take to school with him. Its usually a sandwich, but today I made him a pizza roll. Its similar to a calzone, but longer. DH was pleasantly surprised.


1 roll refrigerated French bread dough
Mozzarella cheese
Parmesan Cheese
1 Egg white


Preheat oven to 350. Roll out the french dough until it is flat. Sprinkle the dough with Mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese. Use as much as you want. Top with pepperoni slices. Roll the dough up into a cylinder shape. Pinch the ends and top to seal. In a small bowl, mix the egg white and 1/4 cup water. Brush the top and sides of the roll with the egg white/water. Bake on a greased cookie sheet for 17 - 20 minutes.
2 servings


Seasoned with steak seasoning:
DH came home early tonight to celebrate turning in his final paper. In celebration, I scrapped the pork chops I had been planning and we made kabobs instead. They were easy, but delicious.


2 filet minion steaks, cut into pieces
1/2 onion, cut into large pieces
20 cherry tomatoes
Worcestershire sauce
Steak seasoning (we used Montreal Steak seasoning)
Optional: Green peppers or mushrooms, cut into large pieces


Use kabob sticks to prick steaks and vegetables, alternating steaks with onions and tomatoes. Season with steak seasoning and Worcestershire sauce. Cook on the grill for about 15 minutes. I made garlic mashed potatoes on the side and french bread rolls.

Blue Cheese Sirloin Patties

This take on the traditional hamburger is something that everyone should love.


1 1/2 lbs extra-lean ground beef (or turkey)
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup blue cheese
1/8 cup parsley flakes
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon EVOO
1/4 teaspoon salt


Shape beef into 8 very thin patties. In a bowl, mix the cheeses, parsley, mustard, garlic, Worcestershire, and salt. Place 1/4 of the mixture onto 4 of the patties. Spread evenly. Top with the remaining 4 patties. Mash the sides together to seal. Heat the EVOO in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the patties at about 5- 7 minutes on each side.

4 servings. These go great with French Fries or baked beans

Easy Chicken and Dumplings

This is a classic semi-homemade meal. DH loves it, and it is the easiest thing to make.


2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 – 2 cans of cream of chicken soup (condensed)
1 can refrigerated biscuits
Salt and pepper
Any other seasoning you may want (thyme leaves or paprika)
Milk or cream broth or EVOO
Optional: carrots or celery or onions


There are two options for cooking the chicken:
Option 1 : Preheat oven to 375. In small dish, lay the two chicken breasts. Cover in either milk or chicken broth. Season well with salt and pepper. (If you are using vegetables, place them in the pan around the chicken). Cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake chicken for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until cooked.

Option 2: Preheat EVOO in skillet. Season the chicken well with salt and pepper. Cook the chicken in the skillet covered for 10 to 15 minutes on medium heat, until the chicken is done. Be sure to flip the chicken every 2 minutes to avoid toughening of the chicken.

To make the dumplings: In a pot, pour the cream of chicken soup and 1 can of water. (You may need more water, depending on how much you are making). (Also, you can use the cooked chicken broth instead of water). Season the soup with salt and pepper or any other seasonings you want to use. Bring to a boil. As it boils, tear off small pieces of the biscuits and drop into the boiling soup. Boil for about 8 – 10 minutes, until “dumplings” are cooked. Add the chicken (and vegetables).

Farmhouse BBQ Muffins

This is not low fat, but these are so delicious!! My little brother won a 4H cooking contest with these years ago. DH loves these, and can't get enough. They are so easy to make!


10 oz can buttermilk biscuits (the flaky biscuits or extra large biscuits don't work as well)
1 lb extra-lean ground beef
1/3 cup ketchup
3 Tablespoons brown sugar
1/3 teaspoon chili powder
1 Tablespoon cider vinegar
1 cup cheddar cheese


Preheat oven to 375. Separate the dough into twelve biscuits. Flatten the biscuits into 5 inch circles. Press into the bottom and sides of greased muffin cups. Meanwhile, brown the beef in a skillet. Drain the beef and pour into mixing bowl. To the bowl, add ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, and chili powder. Mix well. Divide among the biscuits. Top each "muffin" with cheese. Bake for 18 - 20 minutes. Makes 3-4 servings

These muffins go great with most vegetables, including corn, carrots, or a nice ranch salad. No bread required.

Jazzed Up Vodka Chicken over Penne

I've only made this once. I really liked it, because I love all things Italian, but it was DH's favorite. He doesn't like the vodka sauce as much as I do.


1 jar vodka sauce
6 oz penne pasta
2 chicken breasts, cut into pieces
Italian seasoning
garlic powder
1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons capers (I left these off)


Cook penne according to package directions. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and garlic powder. Cook the chicken in EVOO until no longer pink. Drain chicken, and pour vodka sauce over chicken. Add capers and mushrooms. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the penne and simmer and additional 5 minutes. To serve: Place chicken on plate over pasta. Drizzle on EVOO and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

2-3 servings.

I got this recipe from by friend Monica of mealsbymonica

Monday, November 5, 2007

Stuffed Peppers

This is a classic recipe that my mom has been making for years. DH really likes it and usually helps himself to two peppers.


3 bell peppers
3/4 lb extra-lean ground beef
1/8 cup diced onion
1/2 cup cooked long grain brown rice
1 teaspoon salt
1 garlic clove
8 - 12 oz tomato sauce
1/3 cup mozzarella cheese (feel free to use fat free)


Cook rice according to package directions. Cook beef and onion in pan until browned. Remove the top of each pepper. Remove the seeds and rinse. Boil the peppers in water for about 5 minutes. Preheat oven to 350. In beef pan, stir in rice, salt, garlic, tomato sauce. Cook until heated through, about 5 minutes. Stuff the peppers with the beef and rice mixture. Stand upright in baking dish. Pour any extra mixture around the sides of the peppers. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake 45 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake an additional 10 minutes.

3 servings. I made this with corn or the cob and buttermilk biscuits.

Zesty Beef and Pasta

DH really liked this one. He usually doesn't eat vegetables, so any chance for me to sneak vegetables into his diet is a success.


1 lb extra-lean ground beef
1 green pepper, sliced up
1 cup chopped onion
14 oz can stewed tomatoes
12 oz can corn, drained
2 cups egg noodles
4 oz can green chilies, drained
1 package taco seasoning
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup grated cheese, Monterrey Jack or Mozzarella

Preheat oven to 350. Cook beef, onion, and peppers in skillet until beef is cooked and vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Drain, and add tomatoes, juice and all. Stir to mix well. Add all remaining ingredients, except noodles. Cook and stir about 5 minutes. Pour noodles in sprayed casserole dish. Top with meat and vegetable mixture from pan. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for about 25 minutes. Stir once. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake uncovered for an additional 10 minutes.
This makes about 6 servings. 1 serving = 315 calories, 15 grams of fat, and 30 carbs

Parmesan Chicken


2 boneless chicken breasts
2 cups bread crumbs
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1 Tablespoon parsley
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon paprika
pinch salt
3 Tablespoons olive oil
3 cups pomodoro sauce
Mozzarella cheese


Preheat oven to 375. Mix egg and milk in a bowl. In another bowl, mix together bread crumbs, parsley, oregano, garlic, paprika, and salt. Pound the chicken with a mallet until it is about 1/2 inch thick. Preheat the olive oil in a pan. Dip the chicken into the egg/milk, and then into the bread crumbs. Cook in the oil for about 7 minutes on each side.

Serve over pasta or rice with the pomodoro sauce.

Spinach Meatloaf

I have never made this for DH, because he doesn't like spinach. I used to make it for my friends all the time, and they loved it.


1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
1/2 of a small onion, diced
5 oz package of frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed, and dried
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup bread crumbs (about 1 slice)
1/4 cup grated Romano cheese
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 lb ground beef


Preheat the oven to 375. Pre-spray a metal pan with cooking oil. In a skillet, cook the onion in the olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook about 5 minutes, until the onion is tender. Remove half the onion from the pan, and set aside. To the skillet, add spinach, 1/4 cup bread crumbs, 1/8 cup Romano cheese, 1/8 cup heavy cream, and 1/8 teaspoon salt. To the other 1/2 of the onions, mix together with the raw meat, the egg, the remaining breadcrumbs, the remaining Romano cheese, the remaining cream, and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Mix well. Put 1/2 of the meat into the greased pan, then the spinach mixture, then another layer of meat. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Makes about 4 servings.