Thursday, March 27, 2014

Spaghetti Sauce

I love Mom's spaghetti...when she makes it.  But I for some reason can't duplicate it, so I figured out my sauce that works each time I make it.  :)  It's really close to mom's, just slightly different.

1 lb. ground beef
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
2 stalks celery
1 green or red pepper
1 can diced tomatoes (Italian style is really good)
1 can tomato soup
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
about 1/2 c water
3/4 tsp Italian seasoning
1 1/2 tsp basil
1 tsp oregano
dash pepper
1/2 Tbs sugar

Cook beef and onion, drain. Add garlic, celery, pepper and cook.  Add tomatoes, soup, sauce, water, seasonings.  Simmer until thickened (uncovered) about 20-30 min.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sweet Potato Fries

2 good sized sweet potatoes
2 Tbs olive oil
Kosher salt

Peel and cut sweet potatoes into the size of fries and place in a pile on baking sheet.  Drizzle the 2 Tbs olive oil over them.  With hands mix them with the oil and spread around the pan, having them not touch as much as possible.  Sprinkle salt on top.

Bake at 425 for 15 min. Pull out and flip fries over.  Spread again as much as possible.  Bake again for another 15-20 min. until golden brown.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Chicken Cannelloni With Roasted Red Bell Pepper Sauce

This is from my Southern Living Complete Quick and Easy Cookbook, although it really isn't quick and easy to make but it is worth it! It is an easy one to half and bake in an 8x8 in. pan. You could probably use one 9x13 in. pan too.

prep time: 30 min, cook:  30 min

1 -( 8 oz.) pkg. cannelloni or manicotti shells
4 c finely chopped cooked chicken
2 - (8 oz. ea.) containers chive-and-onion cream cheese
1 (10 oz.) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well drained
1 c (4 oz.) shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 c Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs (I usually grind up croutons in my food processor)
3/4 t garlic salt
1 t seasoned pepper (I used lemon pepper because that's all I had)
Roasted Red Bell Pepper Sauce
Garnish:  chopped fresh basil or parsley

1.  Cook pasta according to package directions; drain and set aside.
2.  Stir together chicken and next 6 ingredients in a large bowl - you may want to use your hand to mix..
3.  Cut 1 side of pasta shells lengthwise, opening each shell.
4.  Spoon 1/2 c chicken mixture into each shell, gently pressing cut sides together. Place shells seam side down, in 2 lightly greased 11x7 baking dishes.
5.  Pour Roasted Red Bell Pepper Sauce evenly over shells.
6.  Bake, covered at 350 degrees for 25 -30 min. or until thoroughly heated.  Garnish, if desired.  Makes 6 to 8 servings

Roasted  Red Bell Pepper Sauce:
Savor this rich sauce over your favorite pasta or grilled meats.
prep: 5 min

2 (7 oz. ea.) jars roasted red bell peppers, drained
1 (16 oz.) jar creamy Alfredo sauce
1 (3 oz.) pkg. shredded Parmesan cheese

Process all ingredients in a blender until smooth, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides.  Makes 3 1/2 c. (I used my food processor.)

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Coconut Curry Chicken

In my attempt to make freezer meals, I made one out of this Curry Chicken recipe that Annie posted.  I knew it would be different than when you make it fresh, but we were stunningly surprised at how good this was. It reminded me a lot of the curry people ate in Samoa.

For a freezer-Crock-Pot meal, combine in a freezer Ziplock:

1 chopped onion
2 chopped carrots
1 large chicken breast
1 cubed potato
1 T curry powder
1 t salt
1 1/2 t sugar
1/4 t ginger
2 t chicken base paste (2 bouillon cubes)
2 C coconut milk
1 T lemon juice

Put everything thawed in a Crock Pot. Cook on high for 5 hours. Serve over rice. I did not add the 2 C water to the mix which the original recipe calls for, so the flavor was quite strong & yummy! Adding the 2 C water would obviously make a more mild flavor.

Ultimate Chicken Fingers

This Recipe is from the back of the Bisquick box.  We loved them!  I just increased the amount of chicken, and there was plenty of the flour mixture.

1 1/2 lbs chicken tenders (It calls for 3 boneless, skinless breasts-about 1 lb-cut crosswise into 1/2 in. strips)
2/3 c Bisquick mix
1/2 c grated parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp paprika
1 egg, slightly beaten
3 Tbs butter, melted

Heat oven to 450.  Line cookie sheet with foil; spray.  In 1 gal. ziplock mix Bisquick mix, cheese, salt and paprika.

Dip half the chicken strips into egg; place in bag.  Seal bag; shake to coat.  Place chicken on cookie sheet.

Repeat to use up remaining chicken.  Drizzle butter over chicken.

Bake 12-14 min, turning halfway through bake time with pancake turner, until no longer pink in center.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Classic Split Pea Soup

We went to California Pizza Kitchen for lunch a couple of weeks ago and had their split pea soup.  It was really tasty.  In it were pearl barley and small cubes of carrots.  The rest was smooth and flavorful.  I thought I'd try to imitate it so I used a recipe on the split peas I hadn't used before and added the pearl barley and carrot chunks -- really yummy!


3/4 c chopped yellow onion
1/2 c chopped celery
1/2 c chopped carrots
2 large garlic cloves, minced
49 oz. chicken broth
1-1/2 c green split peas, rinsed
1 sprig fresh thyme

1/2 c cooked pearl barley
1/2 c cooked chopped carrots

Saute the onion, celery, carrots, and garlic in small amount of olive oil until tender.
Add broth, split peas and thyme sprig (I actually forgot the thyme).  Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for 60 minutes or until peas are tender.  Remove thyme sprig.
Puree soup in blender or with hand blender, return to pot and add cooked pearl barley and chopped carrots. Serve.

If you like your soup with ham, add a few chunks before serving.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Old-Fashioned Sour Cream Cookiees

This recipe is from Betty Crocker's Cooky Book, p 79.

1/2 c shortening (part butter or margarine, I used all butter)
1 c sugar
1 egg
1 t vanilla
2-2/3 c all-purpose flour
1 t baking powder
1/2 t soda
1/2 t salt
1/4 t nutmeg
1/2 c commercial sour cream

Heat oven to 425 degrees (I heated my convection oven to 400 degrees).  Mix shortening, sugar, egg, and vanilla thoroughly.  Measure flour by dipping method or by sifting.  Blend dry ingredients; add to sugar mixture alternately with sour cream.  Divide dough; roll out to 1/4 inch thick on well-floured pastry cloth.  Cut with 2 inch cutter; place on greased baking sheet (I use parchment paper).  Sprinkle with sugar.  Bake 8 to 10 min or until lightly browned.  Makes 4 to 5 doz. 2 inch cookies.