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Sunday, January 11, 2015

White Chicken Chili

It must be winter. I was trying to decide what to make for lunch. Looking at my fridge, I realized I still had a lot of chicken leftover. Since the Cowboys/ Green Bay game was on early this afternoon, I decided something football appropriate would be good. I've never made white chicken chili before, but I thought it sounded good. Of course, I only had 2 cans of Cannellini beans, so I had to use pintos for the third, but I threw everything in the Crockpot and crossed my fingers. Of course, my corn craving was still hanging around, so after polling on FB, I added that. Then I couldn't get the seasoning right. So, back to FB and in the end, I finally got it worked out. I really like this stuff and now I know how to make it.

 White Chicken Chili
  •  1 medium onion, diced
  •  3 cloves garlic, minced
  •  1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cans Cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  •  1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  •  4 caps shredded chicken
  •  2 (4-oz) cans green chilies
  •  2 Tbsp ground cumin
  •  1 tsp oregano
  •  1/4 tsp cayenne
  •  2 tsp smoked paprika
  •  salt & pepper, to taste
  • Sharp cheddar, for garnish
Heat olive oil in large skillet.  Cook onions and garlic until onion is translucent.  Add to Crockpot.  Add remaining ingredients, except cheese.   Cover and cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours. Adjust seasoning.  Serve topped with cheddar, if desired.

Corn for Breakfast

I wanted to have something a little different for breakfast. And for some reason, I was craving some of the corn I put away this summer. I usually make quiche on the weekend, but wasn't in the mood this morning. I will probably still make a quiche for this week but I did some digging and saw recipes for veggie pancakes and thought corn cakes sounded good. For my friends with gluten issues, this recipe will work for you. I had bought almond flour a bit ago and have found for many things, I prefer using almond flour. Since I have always had people in my life who were celiac and/or gluten allergic, my baking powder is also gluten free. I didn't intend to make this gluten-free, however, it worked nicely and that is always half the battle.

 Gluten-free Corn Cakes
  • 2 cups frozen sweet corn **, thawed
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 large egg*
  •  3/4 cup almond flour
  •  1 tsp gf baking powder
  •  4 strips bacon, crumbled
  •  salt and pepper, to taste
 Place half the corn, the milk and egg into the blender and puree. Mix flour, baking powder, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Add liquids and mix well. Stir in remaining corn and bacon. Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Drop batter by spoonful and cook, flipping once, until browned.

*CSA ingredients
 **Farmers market ingredients

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Chicken and Eggplant

I feel like it has been an eternity since I've posted here. Part of that was recovering from getting my knee replaced. And of course, I just got back from SAP training in Houston. So today, it was time to cook. I had gotten a nice eggplant and thawed the chicken I cooked before leaving for Houston. So, I put together a casserole. It turned out quite yummy and I will make it again!

 Chicken Eggplant Casserole
  • 1 medium eggplant
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  •  1 (15 oz) can tomatoes with Basil, onion & oregano
  •   1 cup cooked chicken, chopped
  •  6 oz cheddar
  •  2 eggs, beaten
  •  Parmesan cheese
 Dice eggplant and onion. Heat olive oilin large skillet. Cook eggplant and onion until onion is cooked.

 Preheat oven to 350 F.  Mix vegetables, tomatoes, chicken, cheddar and eggs in a large bowl. Pour into a prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle with Parmesan. Bake for 1 hour.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Magic Bars

Who doesn't love Magic bars, or 7-layer bars, or whatever you call them?  Well, I love them but several years ago, I made them with Reese's PB chips instead of Butterscotch chips because that's what I had available.  I found that I like them better that way, so that has been my twist ever since.  This is such a simple recipe that I only allow myself to make it at Christmas.  Too tempting otherwise.

PB Magic Bars
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 6 Tbsp butter
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup Reese's PB chips
  • 1 cup pecan pieces
  • 1 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes
 Preheat oven to 350.  Melt butter in a small bowl for 1 minute on HIGH in the microwave.  Stir in graham cracker crumbs.  Press into 11 X 7 baking pan.  Pour milk over the crust.  Then evenly sprinkle the chips, nuts and coconut.  Press firmly with a fork.  Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

Christmas "Crack"

Yep, it's that time of year again.  I really, really love certain things this time of year.  Today I made the first batch of Chex Mix (or what I lovingly refer to as "Christmas Crack").  The nickname comes from the fact that I can just eat and eat this stuff and it never fills me up.  Because of that, I only make it if I have someone to give it away to.  This week, it's work.  We have our Christmas party on Wednesday, so I will bring both this and roasted butternut squash as my contributions.

Traditional Chex Mix (AKA "Christmas Crack")
  • 4 1/2 cups Corn Chex
  • 4 1/2 cups Rice Chex
  • 1 cup Pretzel sticks
  • 1 cup deluxe Mixed Nuts (no peanuts)
  • 1 cup Cheerios
  • 6 Tbsp butter
  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 tsp seasoned salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
Preheat oven to 250.  Mix together the cereal, pretzels, nuts and Cheerios.  In a small microwave safe bowl, melt the butter for 1 minute on HIGH.  Add the sauce and seasonings and mix well.  Pour evenly over the cereal mixture and stir to coat as evenly as possible. Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.  Spread on paper towels to cool.  Store in sealed container.

Tomatoes & Beef

I love productive days.  Today it was productive because I managed to get caught up on most of my school work.  But I also got a bunch of cooking and baking done.

So, lets start with the cooking.  I am from a Sicilian/Irish family (with some other UK islands mixed in there).  Because of that, Italian was a staple in our house.  But since my gastric surgery, I don't really eat pasta, so Italian is rather non-existent.  I did, however, have a couple pounds of ground beef to use up and really had a taste for my mom's meat sauce, so I recreated it in my new crockpot.

Meaty Mushroom Spaghetti Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 8 oz sliced button mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1 Tbsp mince garlic
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 (28-oz) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (28-oz) can whole tomatoes, broken up
  • 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium heat.  Add onions and cook until just translucent.  Add mushrooms and continue cooking until moisture is evaporated.  Add garlic and cook until fragrant.  Pour into crockpot.

Return pan to heat and saute beef, breaking up as cooking, until no longer pink.  Add this to the crock pot.  Add the tomatoes, seasonings and cheese.  Cover and cook for 6-8 hours on LOW.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts

When I started cooking this weekend, I wasn't sure what I was going to make.  I knew I had Brussels sprouts I needed to cook, but wasn't sure what I wanted to do with them.  As I looked through possible recipes, I decided to try roasting them with balsamic and honey.  It's interesting how you do this, you actually roast them in oil and then "dress" them in the honey and vinegar.  I had also caramelized an onion before roasting the sprouts.  So, I decided to put them together and then go ahead and put them in my quiche for the week.  The results were interesting and yummy.

Balsamic and Honey Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Adapted from:
  • 1-1/2 pounds brussels sprouts, halved, stems and ragged outer leaves removed*
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 large onion
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. In a large bowl, toss brussels sprouts with 2 tablespoons olive oil, kosher salt and pepper. Transfer the brussels sprouts to baking sheet and roast, stirring occasionally to ensure even browning, until tender and caramelized, about 20 minutes.
  3. While the Brussels sprouts are roasting, slice the onion and separate the rings.  Heat about 1 Tbsp olive oil in a saute pan over med-high heat.  Add the onions and stir to coat.  Cook, stirring frequently, until the onions begin to brown.  Reduce the heat to low and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the onions are golden brown.  Set aside.
  4. Place Brussels sprouts back in bowl. Add the caramelized onions.  Add remaining tablespoon olive oil, balsamic vinegar and honey and toss to coat evenly. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary, then serve.

Balsamic Honey Roasted Brussels Sprouts Quiche
  • Balsamic Honey Roasted Brussels Sprouts
  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon
  • 1 cup 6-cheese Italian Blend
  • 6 eggs*
  • 1 1/2 cups 1% milk
  • salt & pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 350.  Spread Brussels sprouts in prepared baking pan.  Cook the bacon for 4 minutes in the microwave; cool.  Dice bacon and sprinkle it over the Brussels sprouts.  Sprinkle with cheese blend.  
  2. In a medium bowl, beat eggs until uniform in color.  Add milk and seasonings and mix until lemon yellow and frothy.  Carefully pour over the fillings.
  3. Bake quiche for 35 minutes or until browned on top.  Allow to stand for 5 minutes before serving.

*CSA ingredients