Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Roast Beef Quesadillas

  • 17-oz. pkg. refrigerated cooked beef roast au jus
  • 3/4 cup bottled chunky salsa
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced sweet and hot peppers (2 yellow, 2 jalapeno)
  • 4-10" flour tortillas
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Fresh cilantro
  1. Preheat broiler.  In large skillet combine beef in its juices, salsa, and peppers.  Cook, covered, over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to break up beef.
  2. For quesadillas, spoon some beef mixture on half of each tortilla.  Fold tortillas over meat, then fold in quarters.  Place folded tortillas on foil-lined baking sheet.  Sprinkle cheese on each quesadilla.  Broil 1 to 2 minutes, just until cheese is melted and tortilla begins to crisp.  Top with cilantro.  Makes 4 servings.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Flank Steak with Romesco Sauce

  • 2 Tbsp. sliced almonds
  • 2 (3/4 oz) slices whole-grain bread, torn into 2-inch pieces
  • 4 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 Tbsp. sherry vinegar
  • 7 oz. jar drained roasted red peppers
  • 1/2 tsp. coarse salt, divided
  • 1 lb. flank steak
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

  1. Heat broiler.  Arrange almonds and bread in a single layer on a baking sheet.  Broil 1 minute or until lightly browned.  Add to a food processor; process until coarsely ground.  
  2. In a small skillet, heat oil, garlic and paprika on medium 1 minute or until garlic begins to brown.  Add garlic mixture, sherry vinegar, red peppers and 1/8 tsp. salt to bread mixture; process until smooth.  
  3. Sprinkle steak evenly with remaining salt and the black pepper.  Broil steak 5 minutes on each side or until desired doneness.  Let stand 5 minutes.  Cut steak diagonally across the grain into thin slices.  Serve with sauce.  

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Savory White Chili

  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 14 oz. can chicken broth
  • 1 med. red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. coarse salt
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 3 (15 oz.) cans cannellini beans, rinsed
  • 4 oz. can chopped green chiles
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • Fat-free Greek yogurt
In a 4-quart slow cooker, combine all ingredients except yogurt and cilantro.  Cover, cook 6 hours on low.  Stir in cilantro.  Garnish with yogurt.  

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sausage and White Bean Stew with Kale

    • 1 pound great Northern beans, picked through*, soaked overnight in water, drained, and rinsed
    • 8 - 9 cups homemade chicken stock, unsalted chicken stock, or reduced-sodium chicken broth
    • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • tablespoons PLUS 1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
    • cups diced onions (2 medium)
    • 1/2 cup diced celery (3 stalks)
    • 1/2 cup peeled and diced carrots 
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic (about 3 cloves); any green shoot removed before chopping
    • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
    • 14 1/2 ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, drained and crushed
    • bunch black kale or kale, washed and stemmed (about 8 cups)
    • pound smoked sausage, such as kielbasa or andouille, cut in 1/2-inch slices
    1. In a heavy nonreactive 5- to 6-quart Dutch oven combine drained and rinsed beans, 8 cups stock, and a generous pinch of salt. Bring to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for 30 to 45 minutes, until beans are tender, stirring occasionally. Add more stock, if necessary; liquid should fully cover beans for beans to move easily during cooking. Cooking time for beans varies from batch to batch. 
    2. Meanwhile, in a 12-inch skillet heat the 3 Tbsp. olive oil over medium heat. Cook onion in hot oil until translucent, stopping before onions brown. Add celery, carrots, and garlic; sprinkle with a pinch of salt and dried thyme. Stir well. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes; season with a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Cook for 5 minutes longer. Add to simmering beans in Dutch oven. Rinse and wipe out skillet; set aside. 
    3. In a large pot of lightly salted boiling water cook the kale for 5 minutes. Drain; set aside to cool. When cool enough to handle, squeeze water from kale, then coarsely chop. 
    4. In same 12-inch skillet cook sausage in 1 tsp. olive oil over medium-high heat about 3 minutes, until well browned on each side. 
    5. When beans are tender, add kale and sausage to beans and vegetables in Dutch oven. Simmer for 10 minutes. Taste for seasoning. (Stew improves in flavor when allowed to rest for 30 minutes or longer before serving. The stew can be made and chilled up to 2 days, then reheated to serve.) 

    Friday, March 16, 2012

    The Best Parmesan Chicken Bake

    • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
    • 2 cloves garlic, crushed and finely chopped
    • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste
    • 6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
    • 2 cups prepared marinara sauce
    • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
    • 8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
    • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
    • 5 oz. garlic croutons
    1. Preheat oven to 350°.
    2. Coat the bottom of a 9x13" casserole dish with olive oil, and sprinkle with garlic and red hot pepper flakes.
    3. Arrange the chicken breasts in bottom of the dish, and pour marinara sauce over chicken.  Sprinkle basil over marinara sauce, and top with half the mozzarella cheese, followed by half the Parmesan cheese.  Sprinkle on the croutons, then top with the remaining mozzarella cheese and remaining Parmesan cheese.
    4. Bake in preheated oven until cheese and croutons are golden brown and the chicken is no longer pink inside, about 35 minutes to an hour, depending on the shape and thickness of your chicken breasts.  
    5. I serve this on a bed of noodles.

    Friday, March 9, 2012

    Italian Sausage Lasagna

    • 1 lb. Italian sausage
    • 12 lasagna noodles, uncooked
    • 1 medium onion, chopped
    • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
    • 1/2 Parmesan cheese, grated
    • 2 cups fresh spinach, lightly packed and chopped
    • 2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
    • 1 tsp. dried oregano
    • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
    • 1 large egg
    • 24 oz. small curd cottage cheese
    • 1 jar (24 oz.) marinara sauce
    1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Cook pasta until al dente.  Drain, lightly oil and set aside.  
    2. In a medium sauce pan, saute the sausage, crumbling with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink.  Add onion and garlic and continue sauteing for another 4 minutes until the sausage is cooked through.  Add marinara sauce to the sausage mixture and set aside.  
    3. In a medium bowl, blend cottage cheese, egg, half of the Parmesan cheese and the chopped spinach; set aside.  
    4. Coat a 9x13" baking dish with olive oil and spread 1 cup of the sauce mixture on the bottom.  Top with 3 lasagna noodles.  Spread 1/4 of the cottage cheese mixture on the oodles and layer on 1 cup of the sauce mixture.  Sprinkle 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese over this.  Repeat this three times starting with the noodles and finish with the remaining 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese.  Sprinkle with oregano.
    5. Preheat oven to 350° and bake for 45 minutes until hot and bubbly.  Let stand 10 minutes before cutting.

    Sunday, March 4, 2012

    Tangy Barbecue Chicken

    Servings:  8

    • 1 cup ketchup
    • 2 Tbsp. spicy brown mustard
    • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
    • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
    • 1 clove pressed garlic
    • 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
    • 1/2 tsp. coarse salt
    • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, divided
    • 3 1/2 lbs. bone-in skinless chicken thighs and legs
    In a medium bowl, whisk together ketchup, mustard, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, paprika, salt and 1/8 tsp. pepper; transfer half of sauce to 4-quart or larger slow cooker.  Sprinkle chicken with remaining pepper; add chicken to slow cooker.  Spoon remaining sauce over and around chicken.  Cover and cook on low 6 hours or until chicken is 165 degrees.  Place chicken on platter.  Whisk cooking liquid until well mixed; drizzle over chicken.  Serve chicken with any remaining sauce.  

    Friday, March 2, 2012

    Pulled Pork Tacos

    Servings:  6
    • 2-2 1/2 lbs. boneless pork shoulder
    • 2 tsp. kosher salt
    • 1 tsp. black pepper
    • 2 tsp. ground cumin
    •  1/2 cup apricot jam or preserves
    • 2 jalapenos sliced into rings and seeded
    • 1 red onion, roughly chopped
    • 8 sm. flour tortillas or corn warmed
    • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
    • 1 lime, cut into wedges

    1. Heat oven to 300°.  Place pork on two layers of aluminum foil.  Season pork with salt and pepper and cumin. Spoon jam over the pork turning to coat.  Scatter the jalapenos and onion around the pork.  Fold the double layer of foil around the pork and crimp edges to seal tightly.  Place in a baking dish.  Roast until for tender.  About 4 hours.  Let cool.
    2. Unwrap pork, reserving juices and discard foil.  Use fork to shred pork.  Transfer to a bowl, pour cooking juices, onion, jalapeno over pork and toss. 
    3. Serve with the tortillas, cilantro and lime wedges and BLACK BEAN AND CORN SALAD, if desired.
    • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
    • 2 cups of corn kernels (frozen)
    • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
    • 1/2 red onion, chopped
    • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
    • 2 tsp. hot sauce (tobasco)
    • 1 lime, juiced
    • 2 Tbsp. olive or vegetable oil
    • salt and pepper

    1. Combine all ingredients and let stand 15 minutes for corn to defrost.  Corn chills salad.
    *This salad makes a healthy and great salsa by itself for tortilla chips too.

    Thursday, March 1, 2012

    Grilled Chicken and Corn Quesadillas

    Servings:  4
    • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
    • 1 large red onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
    • 1 cup corn kernels (fresh or frozen)
    • 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • 2 boneless chicken breast halves, grilled and torn into strips
    • 1 tsp. ground cumin
    • 1 tsp. chile powder
    • 1 tsp. dried oregano
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
    • 4 (8-inch) flour tortillas
    • 4 ounces thinly sliced Monterey Jack or cheddar cheese
    • 3 ounces crumbled goat cheese
    • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
    • 1/4 cup sour cream
    • 1/2 cup salsa

    1. To prepare chicken filling:  Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat.  Saute onions and corn for 5 minutes.  Add garlic.  Cook 1 minute.  Stir in chicken, cumin, chile powder, oregano, salt and pepper.  Remove from heat.
    2. To assemble:  Place tortillas on work surface.  Layer one-fourth of sliced cheese on half of each tortilla.  Top with chicken filling, goat cheese and cilantro, dividing evenly.  Fold tortillas closed.  Press lightly to seal.
    3. To cook:  Heat oven to 200°.  Heat medium saute pan over medium heat.  Cook quesadillas, 1 at a time, 4 to 5 minutes per side or until cheese is melted and tortilla is crisp.  Place finished quesadilla on cookie sheet in oven to keep warm.
    4. To serve:  Slice each quesadilla in half.  Plate with 1 Tablespoon sour cream and 2 Tablespoons salsa.

    Wednesday, February 29, 2012

    Provençal Tomatoes

    Servings:  8
    • 6 ripe tomatoes (2 1/2 to 3 inches in diameter)
    • 1 1/2 cups fresh white bread crumbs (5 slices, crusts removed)
    • 1/4 cup minced scallions, white and green parts (2 scallions)
    • 1/4 cup minced fresh basil leaves
    • 2 Tbsp. minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
    • 2 tsp. minced garlic (2 cloves)
    • 1/2 tsp. minced fresh thyme leaves
    • Kosher salt
    • Freshly ground pepper
    • 1/2 cup grated Gruyère cheese
    • Good olive oil
    1. Preheat oven to 400°.
    2. Cut the cores from the tomatoes, removing as little as possible.  Cut them in half crosswise and, with your fingers, remove the seeds and juice.  Place the tomato halves in a baking dish.
    3. In a bowl, combine the bread crumbs, scallions, basil, parsley, garlic, thyme and 1 tsp. salt.  Sprinkle the tomato halves generously with salt and pepper.  With your hands, fill the cavities and cover the tops of the tomatoes with the bread crumb mixture.  Bake the tomatoes for 15 minutes, or until they're tender.  Sprinkle with the cheese, drizzle with olive oil, and bake for 30 seconds more.  Serve hot or at room temperature.

    Friday, February 24, 2012

    Parmesan Roasted Asparagus

    • 2 1/2 lbs. fresh asparagus (about 30 large)
    • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
    • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
    • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
    • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
    • 2 lemons cut in wedges, for serving

    1. Preheat the oven to 400°.
    2. Break thick ends off asparagus.
    3. Lay asparagus in a single layer on a sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, until tender.  Sprinkle with the Parmesan and return to the oven for another minute.  Serve with lemon wedges.
    *  Buy thickest asparagus possible because they have more flavor.

    Monday, February 13, 2012

    Crispy Apricot Pork Chops

    • 1 Tbsp. olive oil, plus more for baking sheet
    • 2 slices multigrain sandwich bread
    • 4 bone-in pork loin chops (about 8 oz each, 3/4 to 1 inch thick), patted dry
    • coarse salt and ground pepper
    • 4 tsp. apricot jam

    1. Preheat oven to 425°.  Lightly brush a rimmed baking sheet with oil; set aside.
    2. Tear bread into large pieces; place in food processor.  Pulse until large crumbs form.  Drizzle with oil; pulse once or twice, just until crumbs are moistened (you should have about 1 1/2 cups crumbs.)
    3. Season pork chops generously with salt and pepper; spread one side of each chop with 1 teaspoon jam.  Dividing evenly, sprinkle breadcrumbs over jam, and pat them on gently.
    4. Transfer pork, coated side up, to prepared baking sheet.  Bake until crust is golden and pork is opaque throughout (meat should register 150° on an instant-read thermometer), 14 to 16 minutes.  Serve immediately.

    Sunday, February 12, 2012

    Pineapple Grilled Pork Tenderloin

    Servings:  6  Hands-on time:  18 min  Total time:  48 min

    • 2 (1 lb.) pork tenderloins
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
    • 8 oz. can pineapple slices in juice
    • 2 limes
    • 1/4 cup orange marmalade
    • 3 Tbsp. hoisin sauce
    • 3 Tbsp. soy sauce
    • 2 garlic cloves, pressed
    • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
    • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
    1. Preheat grill to 350° to 400° (med-hi) heat.  Remove silver skin from tenderloins, leaving a thin layer of fat.  Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper.
    2. Drain pineapple, reserving 1/3 cup juice.  Grate zest from limes equal to 1 Tbsp.; squeeze juice from limes to equal 1/3 cup.
    3. Bring reserved pineapple juice, lime juice, zest, marmalade and next 5 ingredients to a boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat.  Boil 3 to 4 minutes or until slightly thickened.  Reserve half of mixture in a bowl. 
    4. Grill pork, covered with grill lid, 10 to 12 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 155°, basting with remaining half of pineapple mixture.  Remove from grill; cover with aluminum foil, and let stand 10 minutes.
    5. Meanwhile, grill pineapple slices 1 to 2 minutes on each side.  Serve grilled pineapple and reserved pineapple-marmalade mixture with grilled pork.

    Saturday, February 11, 2012

    Lamb Chops with Red Wine Herb Butter

    Serves: 8
    • 8 (6 oz.) lamb chops
    • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
    • 1 cup dry red wine
    • 1 large shallot, finely minced
    • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
    • 1/2 lb. unsalted butter, at room temperature
    • 1 1/2 Tbsp finely chopped mixed fresh herbs:  chives, parsley, tarragon and thyme
    • salt and pepper
    • 1/2 tsp. lemon juice
    1. Bring red wine, minced shallots and garlic to a boil in a small saucepan.  Turn heat down; simmer until there is about 1 tablespoon of liquid left in the pan.  Remove from heat and cool completely.
    2. Beat butter in a food processor until creamy.  Add the red wine mixture and combine thoroughly.  Mix in the herbs and lemon juice.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Refrigerate butter in container until ready to use (butter can be frozen up to one month).
    3. Salt and pepper the lamb chops on both sides.  Heat olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat.  Cook chops on one side until golden brown.  Turn chops and finish cooking, about 8-10 minutes, depending on thickness.  While chops are still in pan, spoon a dollop of butter onto the warm chops.  Cover with a lid for a few minutes to melt the butter slightly.  Remove lid and serve.

    Friday, February 10, 2012

    Grilled Chicken Tacos

    • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
    • 2 Tbsp. lime juice
    • 4 tsp. Montreal chicken seasoning
    • 1 1/2 lb. chicken breast tenders
    • 8 oz. refrigerated fresh salsa
    • 1 large mango, peeled and chopped
    • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
    • 2 tsp. chipotle hot sauce
    • 6 (6-inch) fajita-size flour tortillas, warmed
    • Toppings: crumbled queso fresco (fresh Mexican cheese), and shredded romaine lettuce
    1. Preheat grill to 300° to 350° (medium) heat.  Combine first 3 ingredients in a zip-top plastic freezer bag; add chicken, turning to coat.  Seal and chill 10 minutes, turning once.
    2. Meanwhile, combine salsa and next 3 ingredients.  Cover and chill until ready to serve.
    3. Remove chicken from marinade, discarding marinade.  Grill chicken, covered with grill lid, 6 minutes on each side or until done.  Serve in flour tortillas with mango salsa and desired toppings. 
    For an easy side dish combine 2 (20.5 oz.) cans refried black beans, 1/2 (8-oz) package whipped chive-flavored cream cheese, and 1/2 tsp. ground cumin in a 2-qt baking dish.  Top with 2 Tbsp finely chopped red onion and 1 cup crumbled queso fresco.  Bake at 450° for 20 to 30 minutes or until cheese melts.

    Tuesday, February 7, 2012

    Pork Kebabs with Roasted Squash and Sautéed Greens

    • 6 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice (3 lemons)
    • 4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh thyme leaves
    • 2 garlic cloves, minced
    • coarse salt and ground pepper
    • 1 pork tenderloin (about 1 pound), excess fat and silver skin removed, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
    • 1 small red onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
    • 1/2 butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces
    • 10 oz. baby arugula (10 cups)
    1. Preheat oven to 400°, with racks in upper and lower thirds.  Soak eight 8-inch wooden skewers in hot water, 15 minutes.  In a large bowl, stir together lemon juice, 3 Tbsp. oil, thyme, and garlic.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add pork, onion, and squash and toss to coat.
    2. Thread pork onto skewers and place on a rimmed baking sheet.  Place onion and squash on another rimmed baking sheet.  Place pork on top rack and vegetables on bottom rack and roast until pork is cooked through, about 30 minutes, flipping skewers and stirring vegetables halfway through.  Remove pork and loosely tent with foil; continue roasting vegetables on bottom rack until tender and browned, 10 minutes.  
    3. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat 1 Tbsp. oil over medium.  Gradually add arugula and cook until just wilted, about 3 minutes; season with salt and pepper.  To serve, divide pork skewers, vegetables and arugula among four plates.

    Thursday, February 2, 2012

    Cheesy Chicken & Rice Casserole

    • 1 can Campbell's Cream of Chicken Soup   
    • 1 1/3 cups water
    • 3/4 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
    • 2 cups fresh or frozen vegetables
    • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
    • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
    • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    1. Stir the soup water, rice, vegetables and onion powder in a 12"x8" shallow baking dish.
    2. Top with chicken.  Season chicken as desired.  Cover.
    3. Bake at 375° for 45 min. or until done.  Top with cheese.  Makes 4 servings.

    Tuesday, January 31, 2012

    Beefy Black Bean Chili

    • 1 sm. can black olives
    • 2 (15 oz) cans black beans undrained
    • 2 (8oz) cans tomato sauce
    • 1 lb lean ground round
    • 1 cup medium or hot chunky-style salsa
    • 1 tbsp chili seasoning mix
    • shredded cheddar cheese
    • sour cream
    1. Cook meat in a large saucepan over med-high until browned stirring until it crumbles.  Drain.  
    2. Drain and mash 1 can of beans.  Add mashed beans, undrained beans, salsa, tomato sauce and seasoning mix to sauce pan; stir well.  
    3. Cook over medium heat 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated. 
    4.  Top with sour cream and cheese.

    Thursday, January 26, 2012

    Favorite Turkey Burger

    • 1 1/2 lbs. ground turkey (92-93% lean)
    • 1/2 cup finely grated Gruyere cheese
    • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
    • 1/4 cup dried breadcrumbs
    • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
    • 1 garlic clove
    • Coarse salt
    • ground pepper
    • vegetable oil for grill
    • 4 hamburger buns
    1. Heat grill to high.
    2. In medium bowl, use fork to gently combine ground turkey with Gruyere, scallions, breadcrumbs, mustard, and garlic.  Season generously with salt and pepper.  Gently form mixture into 4 (1-inch-thick) patties.
    3. Lightly oil grill.  Place patties on hottest part of grill.  Sear for 1 to 2 minutes per side or until browned. Move to cooler part of grill.  Continue grilling for 5 to 10 minutes per side or until cooked through.
    4. Toast buns on grill.  Place burgers on buns.

    Wednesday, January 25, 2012

    Florentine Casserole

    • 6 oz. farfalle, cooked until tender
    • 2-3 cups spaghetti sauce
    • 1 lb. ground beef, cooked and drained
    • 1 cup sour cream
    • 1 cup cottage cheese
    • 10 oz pkg. frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well drained, divided
    • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
    1. Preheat oven to 375°.  Lightly grease a 2-quart casserole dish.  Mix the beef with the spaghetti sauce and fold into cooked noodles until well blended.  Cool.
    2. Mix together sour cream and cottage cheese.
    3. In prepared pan, place half the noodle mixture.  Scatter half the spinach over the noodles and top with half the sour cream/cottage cheese mixture.  Sprinkle with half the Parmesan cheese.  
    4. Repeat layers.  Bake 30 minutes or until bubbly and golden on top.  

    Tuesday, January 24, 2012

    Country Salisbury Steak

    • 1 1/2 lb. extra lean ground beef
    • 1 pkg. (6 oz) Stove Top Stuffing Mix
    • 1 1/2 cups water, divided
    • 3/4 cup chopped onions
    • 1 pkg. (8 oz.) fresh mushrooms, sliced
    • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce
    1. Preheat oven to 375°.  Mix meat, stuffing mix, 1 1/4 cups water, and onions until well blended.  Shape into six 1/2-inch-thick oval patties.  Place on 15 x 10 x 1-inch greased baking pan.  
    2. Bake 25 min. or until cooked through (160°).
    3. Spray large nonstick skillet with cooking spray.  Add mushrooms; cook on medium-high heat 5 min. or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally.  Add barbecue sauce and remaining 1/4 cup water.  Reduce heat to low.  Cook 1 to 2 min. or until sauce is heated through.  Serve over patties. 

    Monday, January 23, 2012

    Baked Hash Brown Potatoes

    • 30 oz. package frozen hash brown potatoes
    • 1/4 cup melted butter
    • 1/4 cup minced onion or onion flakes
    • 1 can cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup
    • 2 cups sour cream
    • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
    • 2 cups crushed corn flakes
    • salt and pepper

    • 2 cups crushed corn flakes
    • 1/4 cup melted butter
    1. Mix together the melted butter, onion, soup, sour cream, cheese and salt and pepper.  Fold in hash browns.  
    2. Place in greased 9 x 13 pan or casserole.  
    3. Toss cornflakes and melted butter.  Spread across top of potatoes
    4. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until golden brown.

    Sunday, January 22, 2012

    BBQ Meatballs

    • 1/2 cup bread cubes
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 1 lb. ground beef (lean)
    • 3 tsp. minced onion
    • 1 tsp. salt and pepper
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 1/2 cup catsup
    • 2 tsp. white vinegar
    1. Soak 1/2 cup bread cubes (about 1 slice of bread torn) in 1/2 c milk.  Add hamburger, minced onion, salt and pepper.  
    2. Form into meatballs and place in a cake pan.  
    3. To prepare topping:  mix brown sugar, catsup and vinegar.  Spoon over meatballs.  Bake 1 hour at 350°.

    Saturday, January 21, 2012

    Scalloped Sweet Potato Stacks

    Servings:  12  Hand on:  25 min.  Total Time:  1 hr., 5 min.

    • 1 1/2lb. small sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
    • 2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme, divided
    • 1 cup (4 oz) freshly shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
    • 2/3 cup heavy cream
    • 1 garlic clove, pressed
    • 1/2 to 3/4 tsp. salt
    • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
    • Garnish: fresh thyme

    1. Preheat oven to 375°.  Layer half of sweet potatoes in a lightly greased 12-cup muffin pan.  Sprinkle with 1 1/2 tsp. thyme and 1/2 cup cheese.  Top with remaining sweet potatoes.  (Potatoes will come slightly above the rim of each cup.)
    2. Microwave cream, next 3 ingredients, and remaining 1/2 tsp. thyme at HIGH 1 minute.  Pour cream mixture into muffin cups (about 1 Tbsp. per cup).
    3. Bake at 375°, covered with aluminum foil, 30 minutes.  Uncover and sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup cheese.  Bake 5 to 7 minutes or until cheese is melted and slightly golden. 
    4. Let stand 5 minutes.  Run a sharp knife around rim of each cup, and lift potato stacks from cups using a spoon or thin spatula.  Transfer to a serving platter.  Garnish, if desired.  

    *Gruyère cheese may be substituted for mozzarella cheese.

    Friday, January 20, 2012

    Homemade Pizza

    Pizza Crust

    • 2 3/4 to 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 package active dry yeast
    • 1/4 tsp. salt
    • 1 cup warm water (120°-130°)
    • 2 tbsp. cooking oil
    • selected toppings
    • 1 recipe Pizza Sauce (see below or one 15-oz can pizza sauce)
    • 2-3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (8-12 oz)

    1. For crust, in a large mixing bowl combine 1 1/4 cups flour, yeast, and salt.  Add water and oil.  Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping bowl.  Beat on high speed for 3 minutes.  Stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can.  
    2. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface.  Knead in enough remaining flour to make a moderately stiff dough that is smooth and elastic (6 to 8 minutes total).  Divide in half.  Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.  

    Pizza Sauce

    • 8 oz can tomato sauce
    • 7 1/2 oz can undrained tomatoes, cut up
    • 1/2 cup onion
    • 1 tbsp. dried basil, crushed
    • 1 tsp. sugar
    • 1 tsp. dried oregano, crushed
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1/4 tsp. pepper

    Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan.  Bring to boiling.  Reduce heat.  Simmer, covered, about 10 minutes or until the onion is tender.

    Thin Crust Pizza
    Make Pizza Sauce.  Grease two 12" pizza pans or baking sheets.  If desired, sprinkle with cornmeal.  On a lightly floured surface, roll each dough portion into a 13" circle.  Transfer to pans.  Build up edges slightly.  Do not let rise.  Bake in a 425° oven about 12 minutes or until brown.  Spread Pizza Sauce onto hot crust.  Top with meat, vegetables, and cheese.  Bake for 10 to 15 minutes more or until bubbly.  

    Makes 6 servings.

    Thursday, January 19, 2012

    Classic Parmesan Scalloped Potatoes

    Servings:  8 to 10 Hands on:  20 min.  Total Time: 1hr., 15 min.

    • 2 lb. Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
    • 3 cups whipping cream
    • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
    • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
    • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
    • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

    1. Preheat oven to 400°.  Layer potatoes in a 13x9-inch or 3 qt. baking dish.  
    2. Stir together cream and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl.  Pour cream mixture over potatoes.  
    3. Bake at 400° for 30 minutes, stirring gently every 10 minutes.  Sprinkle with cheese; bake 15 to 20 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown.  Let stand on wire rack 10 minutes before serving.

    Gruyère Scalloped Potatoes:
    Substitute finely shredded Gruyère cheese for Parmesan.  Reduce parsley to 2 Tbsp. and salt to 1 tsp.  Prepare recipe as directed, stirring 1 tsp. freshly ground Italian seasoning into cream mixture along with the parsley.

    Wednesday, January 18, 2012

    Hoisin-Glazed Chicken Thighs

    Servings:  6           Hands on:  15 minutes
    Total Time:  about 1 1/2 hours 

    • 1/2 cup hoisin sauce
    • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
    • 1 Tbsp. seasoned rice-wine vinegar
    • 1 Tbsp. honey
    • 2 tsp. minced fresh ginger
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
    • black pepper to taste
    • 12 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 2 lb), trimmed
    • 1/4 cup minced scallions (optional)
    • 2 tsp. toasted sesame seeds (optional)

    1. Combine the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, honey, ginger, garlic, sesame oil, and pepper in a baking dish large enough to hold the chicken.  Transfer 1/4 cup of the mixture to a small bow, and reserve for glazing.  Add the chicken to the baking dish, turning to coat.  Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
    2. Heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high (or, alternately, heat the broiler).  Grill the chicken 3 minutes per side, or until just cooked through.  Brush with some of the reserved glaze, turn, and cook 30 seconds more.  Move to a platter; shower with scallions and sesame seeds, if desired.  Serve with edamame-corn salad.

    Edamame (Soybean) & Corn Salad                           
    Servings:   6   Hands on:  10 min.      Total Time:  1 1/4 hrs.

    • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
    • 2 Tbsp. cider vinegar
    • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
    • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
    • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
    • 1 minced garlic clove
    • 1 1/2 cups cooked edamame
    • 1 1/2 cups fresh cooked corn
    • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced
    • 1/2 cup cilantro

    In a small saucepan, combine vinegars, sugar cumin, onion powder and garlic.  Heat until sugar is dissolved.  Remove from heat.
    Place edamame, corn, and red pepper in a medium bowl.
    Pour vinegar mixture over vegetables.  Stir to mix.
    Cover and chill 1 to 4 hours, stirring once.
    Just before serving stir in cilantro.

    Tuesday, January 17, 2012

    Grilled Chicken Thighs With White Barbecue Sauce

    Servings:  5      Hands on:  31 min.     Total Time:  6 hr., 41 min.

    • 1 Tbsp. dried thyme
    • 1 Tbsp. dried oregano
    • 1 Tbsp. ground cumin
    • 1 Tbsp. paprika
    • 1 tsp. onion powder
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/2 tsp. pepper
    • 10 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (about 3 lb.)
    • 1 recipe White Barbecue Sauce (See below)

    1. Combine first 7 ingredients until blended.  Rinse chicken, and pat dry; rub seasoning mixture over chicken.  Place chicken in a zip-top plastic freezer bag.  Seal and chill 4 hours.
    2. Preheat grill to 350° to 400° (medium-high) heat.  Remove chicken from bag, discarding bag.
    3. Grill chicken, covered with grill lid, 8 to 10 minutes each side or until a meat thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 180°.  Serve with White Barbecue Sauce.

    White Barbecue Sauce

    Hands on:  10 min.     Total Time:  2 hr., 10 min.

    Stir together 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise; 1/4 cup white vinegar; 1 garlic clove, minced; 1 Tbsp. coarse ground pepper; 1 Tbsp. spicy brown mustard; 1 tsp. sugar; 1 tsp. salt; and 2 tsp. horseradish until blended.  Cover and chill 2 to 4 hours.  Store in an airtight container up to 1 week.

    Monday, January 16, 2012

    Italian-Style Chicken (Slow Cooker)

    Servings:  8  Hands on: 15 minutes  Total Time:  5 to 7 hours

    • 2 pounds bone-in skinless chicken thighs
    • 1 1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
    • 3/4 tsp. garlic powder
    • 1/4 tsp. coarse salt
    • 1/4 tsp. pepper
    • 1 large thinly sliced onion
    • 1 (14.5-oz) can diced tomatoes, lightly drained
    • 1 cup fat-free chicken broth
    • 2 tbsp. quick-cooking tapioca
    • 2 (15 oz) cans rinsed cannellini beans
    • 1/2 cup rinsed sliced black olives
    • 1/2 cup fresh basil torn into small pieces
    Place chicken in a 4-quart or larger slow cooker and sprinkle with Italian seasoning, garlic powder, salt and pepper.  Scatter onion over chicken.  Stir together tomatoes, broth and tapioca; pour over onions.  Cover and cook on high 4 1/2 hours or on low 6 1/2 hours.  Stir in beans and olives; cook 30 more minutes on low.  Stir in basil and serve.  

    251 Calories per serving.

    This makes a stew style dish.  My 1-year old can't get enough of this one.  It sounds real dull but it has so much flavor.  I may add an extra can of tomatoes to this one next time.