Friday, December 28, 2007

Curried Pumpkin Soup, from Stephanie

Curried Pumpkin Soup
4 tbsp butter
1/2 c. chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced
2 c. pumpkin puree (the regular sized can, not the big can)
4 c. chicken stock (swanson's natural goodness is good)
1 bay leaf
pinch of sugar
1/3 tsp curry powder, to taste
1/3 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 c. light cream
1/3 c. toasted coconut for garnish
Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Add onion and garlic, cover and cook until translucent - about 8 minutes. Add pumpkin and stock, stir well. Add rest of ingredients except cream and coconut. Bring to a boil and lower to a simmer for 30 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Blend if desired. Remove from heat and add cream. Return to heat and heat just to hot, do not allow soup to boil! (this is when I transferred it to the crock pot). Serve with toasted coconut as a garnish.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Thai Squash Soup, from the internet

Thai squash soup~feeds about 6

1 good sized butternut squash~prick with a fork a few time and roast it in the oven on a cookie sheet. It takes 45 min-1 hour depending on squash

In a big soup pot:
1 onion, diced 4 cloves garlic, minced
1 thumb sized piece of ginger, grated

Add the above to pot with 2 TBS butter.

4 medium potates, cubed - add to onions, cook until onions are clear
4-6 cups veggie broth
cover and cook until potatoes are done

With a hand blender/food processor/blender puree potatoe mixture
Seed/peel squash and puree~ add to potatoes mixture

Add 1 can coconut milk, salt and pepper to taste and curry paste to taste. (some like it spicey others not so much) If you don't have curry paste you can always do your favorite curry blend.

reduce temp to low and let simmer 15 min or so to let the flavors mingle.

Enjoy with naan or crusty bread....sourdough is good too!
Freeze in freezer bags/lay them flat for easier storage

Crock Pot Macaroni and Cheese, from Mel

Crock pot Macaroni & Cheese, per Shauna's request...

1 package elbow macaroni
1 stick butter
1 can evaporated milk
1 can cheddar cheese soup, condensed
1 cup milk
1 egg
4 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Boil the pasta for 3-4 minutes, drain. Mix all of the ingredients together, except one cup of shredded cheese. [I think my husband mixed all of the ingredients together and THEN added the pasta.] Pour into crock pot. Sprinkle remaining 1 cup of cheese over the top. Put crock pot on high for 30 minutes, and then low for another hour and a half; until bubbly.

This is from memory, and I didn't even make it. That's how easy it is. Haha. We're going to make it again in a night or two, so I'll double check everything. :) This can be prepared and put in the fridge overnight, and then cooked the next day. That's what we did.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps, from Carrie

I made this for dinner the night before last. It only took about 20 minutes to make and was sooooo good!

Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps

3 Packages (6 oz each) grilled chicken breast strips, Tysons
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 medium red onion, diced
1/4 cup fresh chopped mint
1/4 cup chili sauce, Heinz
2 teaspoons shredded lime zest
1/4 cup lime juice, Real Lime
1 tablespoon of soy sauce, Kikkoman
1 1/2 teaspoon Thai seasoning, Spice Islands
1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1 head of Boston or Bibb lettuce, separated into leaves

1. In food processor fitted with a metal blade (or a blender using pulse mode in very small batches) combine chicken strips, cilantro, red onion, and chopped mint. Pulse until coarsely minced.

2. Transfer chicken mixture to a medium bowl. Stir in chili sauce, lime zest, lime juice, Thai seasoning, and garlic.

3. Serve with lettuce leaves for cup or wrappers. Garnish with fresh mint or cilantro sprig (optional)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Standing Rib Roast, from Betsy

Seasoning blend:

2 tablespoons kosher salt
1-2 tablespoons black pepper
1 tablespoon dry mustard

Mix together.

Allow the roast to stand at room temperature for about an hour before roasting.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Pat the seasoning blend onto all sides of the roast liberally. Place the roast in a roasting pan. Roast in the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 325, and roast until the internal temperature reaches the desired level of doneness (115 for rare). Remove from the oven and allow to stand 15 minutes in a warm place. Slice thinly, and serve with the following yummy accompaniments:

Wine Sauce for Beef

2 1/2 cups beef stock or broth
1/2 cup red wine
Salt to taste

Bring the stock and wine to a boil in a small saucepan. Simmer, uncovered, until reduced to about 2 cups. Add salt to taste. Serve with beef.

Horseradish Sauce

1/4 cup prepared horseradish
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 mayonnaise

In a bowl, combine all the ingredients. Serve with beef. This can be done in advance and kept in the fridge until time to serve. It gets tastier if it has time for the horseradish to develop a bit.

Stirfry, from Teresa

Here's the stirfry I cooked Sunday night:

Saute 2 big cloves of garlic and 1/2 lb beef strips in 2 Tbps oil, remove from
pan. Add ~equal amounts of frozen orange juice concentrate & oyster sauce, plus 1 rounded
tsp minced ginger. Add sliced mushrooms. cover and cook 3 minutes. Add 1/2 package broccoli slaw. Cover and cook 2 minutes. Return beef & garlic. cover and cook 1 minute. Scoop out food to drain. Return juice to pan; add a few shakes of teriyaki
sauce and cornstarch solution; cook to thicken, return food.

Chicken Enchiladas, from Michelle

Tonight I'm making chicken enchiladas:

½ stick butter
1 med. Onion, chopped
4-oz. can green chilies, drained and chopped
1 lb. chicken strips
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. red pepper
4 oz. Philadelphia cream cheese, cubed
8 (9-inch) flour tortillas
8-oz. pkg. cheddar/Jack Cheese, shredded
½ pt. heavy whipping cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and sauté for 5 minutes. Add green chilies, sauté 1 minute. Add chicken, salt, red pepper and sauté over medium heat for 5 minutes. Stir in cream cheese, stirring constantly until melted. Let cool for 5 minutes. Spoon 2 or 3 tablespoons of mixture down center of each tortilla. Roll up tortillas and place seam side down in a lightly greased 13x9 inch baking dish. Sprinkle cheese and drizzle with whipping cream. Bake 30 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.

Taco Pie, from Karli

Taco Pie

4 chicken breasts
1 package taco seasoning
1 can diced tomatoes with green chilies
shredded cheddar cheese

Mix taco seasoning and tomatoes in small bowl. Lay chicken on bottom of crockpot and cover with tomato mixture. Cook on high for 3 hours or low for 5-6. Shred chicken, stir and cook for another hour or so.

Line baking pan (I used a Pampered Chef stone bar pan) with tortillas. You will have to tear them into funny shapes to cover bottom. Spread chicken mixture over tortillas and top with cheese. Bake @ 350° until cheese is melted.

Easy Creamy Chicken, from Michelle

Rotisserie chicken and rotini in a fake cream sauce. Here are the ingredients if anyone is interested:

Rotisserie chicken shredded or chunked (depending on what size bites you prefer)
1 box of rotini
1 block of cream cheese (I use the 1/3 less fat variety)
1 can of cream of mushroom soup (I use 98% FF)

Melt the chream cheese and add the mushroom soup. I add some creole seasoning at this point. You could add actual mushrooms and stuff (DH and I don't eat them). Cook the rotini. Add a few ladles of pasta water to the sauce. Drain the pasta and add to the sauce. Toss in the chicken.

Mmmmmmm. Really good. And since it's a fake cream sauce, it's water friendly. If the leftovers seem a bit congealed, add some water before putting in the micro.

A note from Karli:
Oh wow, that's very similar to what we had last night. The only difference is I added a package of dry ranch dressing to the cream sauce and we did use mushrooms. We call it chicken stroganoff.

Chicken Vermicelli, from Michelle

Tonight was one of those forage for a decent recipe kind of nights, so here's what I did. I found these ingredients in the pantry:
canned diced tomatoes
diced green chilies
vermicelli (16 oz)
... and I had chicken breasts in the freezer and cream cheese and shredded cheese in the fridge.

I boiled the chicken breasts with some seasoning; boiled the pasta; shredded the chicken when done; saved several cups of the resulting broth (but only needed a bit); heated the tomatoes, green chilies, and garlic in some olive oil; put in about two tablespoons of cream cheese; added the chicken; put in a little broth to loosen it up; added the drained pasta; put in a baking dish; topped with shredded cheese; into the oven to melt the cheese.

I hope it's not disgusting. With tomatoes and cream cheese, how could it be, right? (Though I have to admit that the color is less than enticing...)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Mediterranean Chicken, an idea from Barb

Chicken cooked in EVOO then added sliced black olives and sliced tomatoes. Served over whole wheat angel hair pasta with crumbled Feta cheese. Everyone liked it!

Pork Chop Potato Casserole, from Karli

Pork Chop Potato Casserole

4 boneless pork chops
4 med-large potatoes, thinly sliced
1/2 onion, sliced into rings
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I doubled the recipe and used one can mushroom and 1 can cream of celery)
1 cup of milk

Lay sliced onions in bottom of 9x13 baking pan. Put potatoes on top of onion layer. Mix together soup and milk and pour over onions and potatoes. Place pork chops on top and season with favorite seasonings. Bake at 425° for 1 hour.

Amber adds:
Karli, that is the same recipe my mom used for pork chops and it is how I make them now. Yummy! Sometimes I add sliced mushrooms or carrots to it as well. It is also good with sour cream mixed into the sauce and lots of garlic.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Suggested by Carrie - Caribbean Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili

From Sandra Lee's Semi-Homemade 20 Minute Meal cookbook:

Caribbean Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 1/4 lb ground turkey
1 tsp bottled minced garlic
1 can (15 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15 oz) sweet potatoes rinsed, drained and diced
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes with onion
1 can (14.5 oz) chicken broth/stock
1 cup mango nectar (Kerns or Goya brand)
1 packet mild chili seasoning mix (McCormick)
1/2 tsp ground allspice
chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Heat oil in skillet. Add turkey and garlic, stir until brown.Add broth, beans, potatoes, tomatoes, seasoning packet, nectar, and allspice. Bring to boil, reduce heat, simmer for 10 minutes. Serve into bowls, top with fresh cilantro. Makes 4 servings.

Toothpick Caprese, from Dara

All this mention of caprese salad (YUM!) reminded me of something I saw done last year, and did myself at a party this year, to turn caprese into finger food.Get the marinated mozzarella balls (marinated in olive oil and spices, I think), cherry tomatoes, and of course basil. Also get those giant toothpicks. Each toothpick gets a mozzarella ball, a tomato, and a basil leaf. It's a great way to have caprese at a party!

Ice cream sandwich pie, an idea from Rachael

Ice cream sandwich pie

You can use any size pan you want that will determine how much of everything else you use.

Cover the bottom of the pan with half of the ice cream sandwiches. Spread a layer of cool whip over that. Drizzle with hot fudge topping (Hershey's rocks), throw on some unsalted peanuts. Repeat, ending with peanuts. Freeze until firm.

Citrus Herb Chicken Marinade, from Karli

Citrus Herb Chicken Marinade
1/2 cup lemon or lime juice
2 TBS olive or canola oil
3/4 tsp season salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp thyme
Mix all ingredients and marinade chicken for at least 3 hours.

I grilled the chicken and served over Spanish style rice and tortilla strips. I then topped it with a small amount of salsa and sour cream. My husband melted some colby-jack cheese on top too.

Bacon Cheeseburger Roll-up, from Karli

Bacon Cheeseburger Roll-up
1lb ground beef or turkey
4-6 slices of bacon, cooked
1/2 onion, diced
1/2 packaged Velveeta, cubed or substitute your favorite cheese that melts easily
1 roll ready made pizza crust
Brown ground meat and onion in skillet until done. Crumble bacon and add to meat mixture. Then add cheese and heat until cheese is melted, stirring continuously. Roll out pizza crust on baking sheet. Spread meat/cheese mixture on top. Begin rolling starting at long end. Arrange on cookie sheet with seam side down. Bake at 350% until crust is golden brown.

Slow Cooker Baked Apples, from Karli

Slow Cooker Baked Apples
Core 4-6 apples (however many will fit in your crockpot) and place standing up in slow cooker. Fill empty cavity with brown sugar. Pour 1/2 cup apple juice or cider over apples and sprinkle cinnamon liberaly on top. Cook until apples are desired softness. <1.5>

Dreamsicle Cake, from Karli

Dreamsicle Cake
1 box white cake mix mixed according to directions
1 4oz box orange Jello
1 8oz tub vanilla flavored Cool Whip
Mix Jello into cake batter and bake as directed on box. Cool completely and "frost" with Cool Whip.

Veggie Stir-Fry, an idea from Amy

I'm doing a veggie stir-fry tonight since I have a ton of veggies in the fridge I need to use. I'm going to just slice carrots, celery, mushrooms, broccoli, cook, coat in hoisin sauce, add baby corn from a can, serve with rice. I might have some left over tri-tip in the freezer that I'll throw in for protein purposes!