Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Chicken Enchilada Pasta

1 rotisserie chicken, shredded
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium onion, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 can diced green chiles (4 oz)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
2 cans green chili enchilada sauce (10 oz, each)
2/3 cups red enchilada sauce
2 cups shredded cheese (any kind)
1 cup sour cream
Penne pasta
Topping Ideas
Green Onions
Black Olives
Sour Cream
1. Shred chicken (I recommend doing this earlier in the day, or even the day before to save time, as well as chopping the veggies).
2. Boil pasta according to package. Heat olive oil in a deep skillet and cook onions for 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and red pepper and cook for another 3-5 minutes.
3. Add cooked chicken, green chiles, cumin, chili powder, salt, and enchilada sauces. Let sauce simmer for about 8-10 minutes.
4. Add cheese and stir until the cheese is melted and heated through. Slowly add the sour cream, but DO NOT bring to a boil (so as not to curdle the sour cream). Stir until sour cream is well mixed and heated through.
5. Drain pasta and add to the skillet with the cheese sauce; mix well. Serve and garnish with desired toppings.

Homemade Crock Pot Mac N Cheese


  • 1 package (16 ounces) elbow macaroni
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 4 cups (16 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
  • 1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cheddar cheese soup, undiluted
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs


  • Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain. Place in a
  • 5-qt. slow cooker; add butter. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, 3
  • cups cheese, evaporated milk, soup and 2% milk. Pour over macaroni
  • mixture and stir to combine. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours.
  • Sprinkle with remaining cheese and bread crumbs. Cover and cook 15 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.

Curried Rice with Shrimp

Another winner from "Family Feasts for $75 a Week"


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, thinly sliced
  • 2 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 pound medium-size shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil or 2 teaspoons dried


1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat until hot. Add onion, carrots, and potatoes; cook, stirring occasionally, until they start to soften, 6 to 8 minutes. If vegetables begin to stick, add a little slosh of chicken broth to skillet.
2. Add garlic and curry powder; cook, stirring until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add rice, broth, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Add shrimp; stir, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until shrimp are opaque and rice is tender, another 5 to 7 minutes. Sprinkle with basil and serve.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Crockpot Italian Chicken

Crockpot Italian Chicken
4 chicken breasts
1 packet Zesty Italian dressing seasoning
8 oz. cream cheese (softened)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can milk (can adjust soup/milk ratio for desired thickness)
2 tablespoons of garlic powder

1 package of pasta (cook separately and toss with other ingredients from crock pot)

Cook on low for 7-8 hours.
If sauce is too thick, add a little milk.
Add pasta to chicken and toss

Asian Marinated Chicken

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
3 Tbs peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger, from 1 ( 3 - 4 ") piece
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp garlic chili sauce *optional
3 Lbs bone-in, skin-on,chicken thighs, drumsticks, and breasts, combination of all three

Whisk all of the marinade ingredients together and pour into a 9X13 broiler proof baking dish. Lay chicken pieces in a single layer on top of marinade and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours, turning chicken at least once during that time. Remove chicken from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes. Place oven rack in the middle and heat oven to 475 degrees. Turn all chicken pieces skin side up in the dish. Bake for 40 minutes or until chicken is starting to turn dark brown in color. Set the oven to broil and roast until the skin is nice and crisped, about 3 minutes. Serve with sauce on the side.

Mexican Stuffed Shells

I made a double batch of this and froze one.
16-20 jumbo pasta shells (20 will fill a 9x13 baking dish)
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 can (16 oz.) refried beans
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded cheddar cheese, divided
2 tbsp. chili powder
1½ cups (12 oz. bottle) taco sauce or salsa, divided
¼ cup sliced green onions
Light sour cream (optional)

1. Prepare pasta shells according to package directions, then drain. (I always prepare a few extra in case some break while being filled.) After cooking, either toss with a little oil (to prevent sticking), or set out on a baking sheet, separated, while they wait to be filled.

2. Cook beef in large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until no longer pink. Drain. Add beans, ¾ cup cheese and chili powder; mix well.

3. Spread ¼ cup taco sauce over bottom of each of two 8-inch square baking dishes (or ½ cup sauce in an 9x13 pan). Fill pasta shells with beef mixture (about 3 tbsp. each, which equals one large cookie scoop). Place 8-10 shells in each baking dish, filled side up. Spoon remaining taco sauce over shells. Cover one baking dish with plastic wrap, then wrap with foil. Label and freeze for up to 2 months.

4. Cover remaining baking dish with foil. Bake at 350º for 40-45 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Serve with green onions and sour cream.

To bake frozen shells: Place baking dish in the refrigerator overnight. Preheat oven to 375º. Remove foil & plastic wrap; recover with foil. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until heated through. Top the same way as above.

PW's Chicken Parmesan

The sauce on this one is amazing!!
  • 4 whole (up To 6) Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, Trimmed And Pounded Flat
  • 1/2 cup All-purpose Flour
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 whole Medium Onion, Chopped
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 3/4 cups Wine (white Or Red Is Fine)
  • 3 cans (14.5 Oz.) Crushed Tomatoes
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 1/4 cube Chopped Fresh Parsley
  • 1 cup Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 pound Thin Linguine

Preparation Instructions

Mix flour, salt, and pepper together on a large plate.
Dredge flattened chicken breasts in flour mixture. Set aside.
At this time, you can start a pot of water for your pasta. Cook linguine until al dente.
Heat olive oil and butter together in a large skillet over medium heat. When butter is melted and oil/butter mixture is hot, fry chicken breasts until nice and golden brown on each side, about 2 to 3 minutes per side.
Remove chicken breasts from the skillet and keep warm.
Without cleaning skillet, add onions and garlic and gently stir for 2 minutes. Pour in wine and scrape the bottom of the pan, getting all the flavorful bits off the bottom. Allow wine to cook down until reduced by half, about 2 minutes.
Pour in crushed tomatoes and stir to combine. Add sugar and more salt and pepper to taste. Allow to cook for 30 minutes. Toward the end of cooking time, add chopped parsley and give sauce a final stir.
Carefully lay chicken breasts on top of the sauce and completely cover them in grated Parmesan. Place lid on skillet and reduce heat to low. Allow to simmer until cheese is melted and chicken is thoroughly heated. Add more cheese to taste.
Place cooked noodles on a plate and cover with sauce. Place chicken breast on top and sprinkle with more parsley. Serve immediately.

Kung Pao Chicken W/ Sesame Noodles

Kung Pao Chicken (from Mary Ostyn!!)
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken
breast halves - cut into chunks
2 tablespoons white wine
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil, divided
2 tablespoons cornstarch, dissolved in 2
tablespoons water
1 ounce hot chile paste
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
2 teaspoons brown sugar
4 green onions, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 (8 ounce) can water chestnuts
4 ounces chopped peanuts
1.To Make Marinade: Combine 1 tablespoon wine, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon cornstarch/water mixture and mix together. Place chicken pieces in a glass dish or bowl and add marinade. Toss to coat. Cover dish and place in refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
2.To Make Sauce: In a small bowl combine 1 tablespoon wine, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon oil, 1 tablespoon cornstarch/water mixture, chili paste, vinegar and sugar. Mix together and add green onion, garlic, water chestnuts and peanuts. In a medium skillet, heat sauce slowly until aromatic.
3Meanwhile, remove chicken from marinade and saute in a large skillet until meat is white and juices run clear. When sauce is aromatic, add sauteed chicken to it and let simmer together until sauce thickens.

Pioneer Woman's Sesame Noodles:


  • 12 ounces, fluid Thin Noodles, Cooked And Drained
  • ¼ cups Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Rice Vinegar
  • 3 Tablespoons Pure Sesame Oil
  • ½ teaspoons Hot Chili Oil
  • 4 Tablespoons Canola Oil
  • 4 whole Green Onions, Sliced Thin

Preparation Instructions

Whisk all ingredients (except noodles and green onions) together in a bowl. Taste and adjust ingredients as needed.
Pour sauce over warm noodles and toss to coat.
Sprinkle with green onions and toss.

Taco Pasta

  • 1 pound ground beef or turkey
  • 8-12 ounces medium pasta shells or other small dry pasta shapes
  • 1 small onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 (14 oz.) can diced tomatoes with mild green chilies, drained (if making this for kids you might want to use just plain diced tomatoes)
  • 1 packet (4 tablespoons) taco seasoning
  • 3 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook pasta according to the package directions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of pasta water. Set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet or sauté pan, cook the ground meat over medium-high heat until no longer pink. A few minutes before the meat is cooked through, add the chopped onion to the skillet. Once the meat is cooked through, mix in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add in the diced tomatoes and taco seasoning and let simmer over medium heat for about 3-5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the cooked pasta, cream cheese, sour cream and reserved pasta water, and continue stirring until the cream cheese is melted and the sauce is well blended. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Simmer over medium-low heat 3-5 minutes to reduce the sauce a bit if it is still too thin.
  4. Toss in the cilantro right before serving for some fresh color and flavor. Serve with a green salad.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Cheesy Ranch Tater Tots

1 Bag frozen tater tots (I got a king size bag and used around 1/2)

Sour Cream Ranch Sauce
1 cup light sour cream
1/2 cup ranch dressing
1/4 cup milk

1 cup (or as much as you like) shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (didn't use this time as I didn't have any)
1/2 cup real bacon bits.  Or more.  Lots more.  I cooked up 3/4 pound....
1/4 cup green onions
Salt and pepper to taste (I didn't think it needed it).

1.  Cook frozen tater tots according to package directions.  (I actually cooked up the amount I used on 2 trays, to maximize crispiness.  What you see on the tray above is after it was all assembled.)
2. Spread 3/4 of the Sour Cream Ranch Sauce onto an oven safe serving platter.  I used a baking sheet.
3. Arrange tots on top of the sauce.
4. Drizzle remaining sauce on the top, and sprinkle on the toppings.
5. Place under broiler for a few seconds to melt the cheese.

Serve immediately.

Like making twice baked potatoes, but different.  About 30 minutes prep time.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Malted Cocoa Mix

We made this for Christmas gifts.  We doubled the recipe, which just might have been too much for my most ginormous mixing bowl.

This recipe is enough to fill five 1 quart containers.

25oz powdered milk
6 cups mini marshmallows
16 oz instant chocolate milk mix (like Quik)
13 oz malted milk powder (It will be in the same row as the chocolate milk)
1 cup powdered sugar
6oz powdered coffee creamer
1/2 tsp salt

Mix all the ingredients and store in airtight containers.

To serve, stir 1/3 c mix into 3/4 cup boiling water.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Cinnamon Crescents

I love making (and eating) cinnamon rolls, but it does take a chunk of time.  Last Sunday I quickly made these, and while they aren't the same thing as rolls from scratch, they are still plenty yummy!

1 tube refrigerated crescent rolls

5 tablespoons butter, softened
¼ cup white sugar
2½ teaspoons cinnamon
2 tablespoons butter, melted
¼ cup + 2 tablespoons powdered Sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Unroll crescent rolls.  Mix together filling ingredients and spread onto dough triangles.  Roll up and place tip side down on a cookie sheet.  Bake 10-12 minutes at 375.

Mix glaze ingredients and place into a baggie.  Snip the corner.  Drizzle the glaze over the hot rolls.

Chocolate Cookie Dough Dip

I read about this recipe on a blog somewhere, but I can't remember where.  We served it up at Abigail's birthday party.  It is decadently delicious.  We had it with graham crackers and nilla wafers as dunkers, but a spoon works equally as well.  :)

1 cube butter
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 8oz block of cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup mini chocolate chips

Melt butter and brown sugar together, stirring until bubbly and the sugar dissolves.  Add vanilla.  Set aside to cool a bit.

Beat cream cheese and powdered sugar together.  With mixer on low, stir in brown sugar mixture.

Stir in most of the chocolate chips, and then sprinkle the rest on the top.

Cheddar Fondue

We had fondue with the kids for the first time on New Years Eve.  I found a recipe that was more cheddar based, rather than the traditional swiss, so the kids might like it better.

12 oz sharp cheddar
4 oz swiss
1 Tbl flour
8 oz light beer (or chicken broth)
1 Tbl  + 1 tsp garlic powder
1 1 Tbl  + 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbl dry mustard

Shred cheeses and toss with the flour.

With the fondue pot on medium heat, pour in the beer (or broth.)  Since the kids were joining us I let it boil quite a while to burn off the alcohol content.  Add garlic, mustard powder and Worcestershire.

Add about 1/3 of the cheese and whisk very well.  Once it has melted add another third and wish, and then add the remaining and whisk again.

We served it with sourdough and rye bread, apples, celery and boiled red potatoes.

Glazed carrots

I made these for our Christmas dinner, which was ham and the fixings.  I'm usually not a big cooked carrot fan, but this is what I went after for seconds and leftovers the next day.  I made these ahead of time on the 24th, and they reheated really well for dinner, which left me more time to play with new toys and less time in the kitchen.

1# carrots - peeled, sliced, boiled until cooked, but still firm

2 T butter
2 tsp flour
1/3 c orange juice
1/4 c brown sugar
shake of cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla

Melt butter in a saucepan.  Blend in flour, then OJ, brown sugar, cinnamon and vanilla.  Stir well.  Fold in the cooked carrots and place into a casserole dish.  Either eat immediately or reheat when needed.