Monday, May 31, 2010

Feta, tomato and basil pasta

I combined a few recipes and made some stuff up as I went along, but the end result was so good I wanted to write it down, so at least I can try to recreate it sometime.

In a big pot, heat 1 Tbl olive oil and a big pile of minced garlic a few minutes, or until garlic is golden brown. Add 3 cups chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add half a bag of pasta and cook according to the pasta directions.

Meanwhile dice about a cup of tomatoes (we had cherry tomatoes.) In a skillet add 1 Tbl olive oil and the tomatoes, and then salt the tops. Let them cook while the pasta cooks.

When the pasta is done, DO NOT DRAIN.

Stir in about a cup of crumbled feta, 1/2 cup of fresh, chopped basil, and the tomatoes.

Scooby Snacks

These came straight out of a Scooby Doo book. They aren't very sweet at all, so think more of a mini-granola bar than a cookie. That being said, the kids loved them!

2 cups flour
1 cup oatmeal
1/2 cup sugar
1 cube butter
1/2 cup cocoa
2 eggs
2 Tbl vanilla extract
2 Tbl walnut extract (I just doubled the vanilla)

Preheat oven to 350 and grease the cookie sheets.

Mix all the ingredients together. Drop dough by the tablespoon onto the cookie sheets, and then squish into whatever shape you want.

Bake for 8 minutes.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Rice Cooker Oatmeal

I found this idea in the cookbook "Family Feasts for $75 a Week" by Mary Ostyn. I picked it up from the library and then ended up buying it. It not only has good recipes, but just lots and lots of great basic ideas for how to save money in the kitchen.

I tried this today, and had four kids eat it all up. Anything that everyone will eat gets 4 stars around here! Plus it took about 15 seconds to get ready, and then was done right as the last kid drug himself out of bed.

The basic idea:
Put 4 cups cold water and 2 cups quick-cooking oats into a rice cooker and turn on.

When it is done cooking (mine takes about 20 minutes) you could add whatever you wanted to.

Her recipe suggests:
Stir in 1/3 cup brown sugar, 2 Tbl butter and 1 tsp vanilla.

I added some cinnamon, too. The kids said it tasted like the Quaker "cinnamon roll" oatmeal.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Asian chicken and rice bake

• 3/4 cup uncooked regular long-grain white rice
• 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
• 1 (10.75 ounce) can Campbell's® Condensed Golden Mushroom Soup
• 3/4 cup water
• 2 tablespoons soy sauce
• 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
• 2 tablespoons honey
• 1 teaspoon garlic powder
• Paprika

1. Spread the rice in an 11x8-inch (2-quart) shallow baking dish. Top with the chicken.
2. Stir the soup, water, soy sauce, vinegar, honey and garlic powder in a medium bowl. Pour the soup mixture over the chicken. Sprinkle with the paprika. Cover.
3. Bake at 375 degrees F for 45 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Spiral Stromboli

(The flower and pot was a Mother's Day gift from Zachary)

1 tube refrigerated crusty French Loaf (This worked well, although spendy enough I'll probably just make my own dough next time.)
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 pound sliced ham
1/4 pound sliced salami
1 Tbl melted butter
3 Tbl shredded Parmesan cheese
Unroll the dough into a 14x12" rectangle. Sprinkle with mozzarella and cheddar cheese to within 1/2" of the edges. Top with meat slices. Roll up, starting with a short end. Seal the seam and tuck under the edges. Place seam side down on a baking sheet. Brush with butter and sprinkle with the parmesan. Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown. (Err on the long side, I ended up with a doughy center.)

Salsa chicken pizza

This one doesn't look very pretty, but the taste made up for it! The original recipe called for a Boboli pizza crust, but I made my own with the food processor dough recipe.

Sprinkle cheese on the crust. Add about a cup of cooked and cubed chicken. Cover with salsa. (We used Jack's from Costco, which is just delicious.) Sprinkle with more cheese. Bake according to the crust directions. Simple and SO good.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Chicken and Chips

1 can cream of chicken
1 cup sour cream
2 Tbl taco sauce
1/4 cup green chilies
3 cups cubed chicken
12 slices American cheese
4 cups broken tortilla chips

In a bowl, combine the soup, sour cream, taco sauce, and green chilies.

In a 2 qt baking dish, layer half the chicken, sauce, cheese and tortilla chips. Repeat layers.

Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes, or until bubbly.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Polenta Tamale Pie

I don't have a finished product photo, but this one was very good.

1 pound ground beef
1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 16-ounce bottle salsa
1 15- to 16-ounce can refried beans
1 14 1/2-ounce can chicken broth
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 1-pound rolls prepared polenta, sliced into 1/3-inch-thick strips
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
Sauté beef in heavy large pot over medium-high heat until no longer pink, breaking up meat with back of fork, about 3 minutes. Add chili powder and cumin; stir 1 minute. Add salsa, beans and broth. Simmer until mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. Mix in 1/4 cup cilantro; season with salt and pepper.
Oil 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish. Place half of polenta in dish. Top with sauce and 1 1/2 cups cheese, then remaining polenta, cheese and cilantro. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover with foil; chill.)
Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake freshly assembled pie, uncovered, until heated through and sauce bubbles, about 35 minutes, or bake refrigerated pie, covered, 20 minutes, then uncover and bake until heated through, about 35 minutes.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Meat Loaf Pie

I'm still making my way through a library Taste of Home cookbook, and tried this last week. I really enjoyed it more than any other meatloaf recipe I've ever tried, (although I haven't tried out the Billy Joel Meatloaf, yet.) It had good Italian flavoring, and because it was in a pie shape it cooked quickly.

5 oz evap milk
1/2 cup Italian flavored dry bread crumbs
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1 pound lean ground beef
1/3 cup ketchup
1 cup shredded cheddar
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 Tbl grated parmesan cheese

In a large bowl combine the milk, bread crumbs and garlic salt. Add beef and mix well. Press onto the bottom and 1" up the sides (I couldn't get it to go up very far) or a greased 9" pie pan.

Bake, uncovered, at 350 for 20 minutes. Drain any grease.

Spread with ketchup. Sprinkle with cheddar, oregano and parmesan.

Bake 3-5 minutes longer, or until cheese is melty.