Saturday, August 28, 2010

Quick and Easy Chicken Pot Pie

3 large chicken breast, cubed and cooked
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen peas and carrots
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 Tbsp. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground sage
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 can chicken broth
Ready made pie pastry (I like a double crust)
1 egg, beaten

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Place one of the pie shells in a 9-inch pie plate making sure to crimp well over the edge other wise it will shrink into the plate; cook per package directions, set aside.

In a saucepan melt the 1 Tbsp. of butter and add onion, salt, pepper, garlic powder and sage; cook until tender.  Add the 1/4 cup butter and melt; add the flour and cook for 1 minute.  Add chicken broth and stir until thickened.  Stir in cream.  Add  chicken and vegetables to the sauce.

Place chicken mixture in cooked pie shell and top with raw pie dough.  Make a couple of slits in the top, crimp the edges around the pie plate, brush with egg wash and bake for 12-15 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.

Sloppy Joes

1 lb. ground beef
1 Tbsp. oil
1-1/2 cups chopped onion
1-1/2 cups chopped celery
1 (8 oz) can seasoned tomato sauce
1 can tomato soup
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. chili powder

Brown meat in oil.  Add onion and celery.  Cook until tender but not brown.  Drain off grease.  Add tomato sauce, soup and seasoning.  Simmer uncovered about 20 minutes.  Serve on toasted hamburger buns or on top of cornbread.

Easiest Beef Brisket Ever!

4-5 lb. beef brisket
garlic powder
2 bottles Catalina dressing

Season brisket on all sides liberally with salt, pepper and garlic powder.  Place brisket in roasting pan.  Cover brisket with dressing, cover pan with foil and cook in oven at 325 degrees until tender, about 2-1/2 to 3 hours.  You can slice on the diagonal for slices or you can shred it for shredded beef sandwiches.  Super easy!!

Grandma Pearce's Classic Chicken Divan

This recipe has been in our family for as long as I can remember (at least 40 years) and is a family favorite.

2 (10 oz) pkgs. frozen broccoli spears (you can also use the new microwaveable bags just make sure it equals at least 20 oz)
2 cups chicken broth or 1 can broth
1/2 whipping cream
6 chicken breasts, boiled and cut in large pieces (you can also use non-breaded chicken tenders)
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
cooked egg noodles, follow directions on package

Cook broccoli as package directions indicate, drain.  In a sauce pan melt butter, blend in flour, cook for 1 minute.  Add chicken broth and stir until mixture becomes thick.  Stir in cream, 1/2 cup of cheese, salt and dash of pepper.

In a 9 x 13 pan pour 1/2 cup of sauce and spread in bottom of dish.  Place all of the broccoli on top of the sauce then pour half of the sauce on top.  The next layer is the cooked chicken, top with remaining sauce.  Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, then broil until the sauce is golden around the edges and on top.  Serve on top of egg noodles.

*Hint: We usually double the sauce recipe so that we have enough for the egg noodles and just in case someone doesn't like the broccoli they still have something to eat!

Texas Strawhats

This recipe is similar to chili but definitely a different flavor, but oh so yummy!  The spices is what makes this so good.  I serve it with tortilla strips, cheese and onion.  It is also pretty quick.

1 cup chopped onion
2/3 cup chopped celery
2/3 cup chopped green pepper
3 Tbsp. oil
2 lbs. ground beef
2-3 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 (6 oz) can tomato paste
1/2 cup ketchup
2 cups water
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
dash of hot sauce
tortilla strips
shredded cheddar cheese

In an extra large skillet, cook onion, celery, and green pepper in hot oil until tender but not brown.  Add ground beef. Brown lightly, drain off grease.  Add remaining ingredients except chips and cheese.  Simmer uncovered 45 minutes stirring occasionally.  Serve in a bowl and top with the chips and cheddar

Homestyle Chili

I make this recipe sometimes with just all ground beef for those that have a more frugal budget and it tastes just as amazing but I am posting it the way I make it most of the time.  

To Start:
1 large onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
4 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. EVOO
2 lbs. ground beef
2 lbs. mild Italian sausage
2 lbs. chuck roast, cut into cubes

In a large stock pot add butter and EVOO and melt over a medium-high heat.  Add the chuck roast cubes, salt and pepper liberally.  Brown meat until nice and caramelized, about 8-10 minutes.  Turn heat down to medium and add the onion, bell pepper, ground beef (salt and pepper) then and sausage.  Brown meat until ground beef and sausage are cooked through and onions and bell pepper are tender.

4 cans (14-16 oz) stewed tomatoes, do not drain
1 cup hot water
2-4 packages of Chili-O mix, depending on your taste preferences
3 cans dark red kidney beans
3 cans pinto beans

Mix well to combine all the flavors, turn heat to low and cover.  Let it go, stirring occasionally until the chuck roast is tender, about 2 hours.  Right before serving add a bag of frozen corn (or not).  Serve with sour cream, shredded cheddar and chopped onion. Yum!!!!!

*If you want a quicker chili leave out the chuck roast and this can be on your dinner table in 45 minutes.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Flip-floppin' homemade ice cream

Who needs an ice cream maker when you can do this with just a few Ziploc bags? You're hands may be frozen, but it's a fun activity to do with your kids.
We double this recipe for our family of 5 and then take turns flipping the two bags. The boys think it's funny to wear snow gloves while they flip. It's actually a very smart idea!
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup half and half
1/2 cup grape juice (we've made it with grape, but this time we used peach nectar - yum!)
1/3 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3/4 cup rock salt
5 cups crushed ice
2 1-quart zipper bags
1 gallon zipper bag
Combine first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl, stirring until sugar dissolves. Pour creamy grape mixture into a 1-quart zipper bag; carefully seal bag. (The first time we made this we only used one bag and our ice cream tasted, now we use two 1-quart baggies. I'd definitely recommend it.)
Place about half of the rock salt , about 2 cups of crushed ice, and the sealed 1-quart bag in a 1-gallon zipper bag. Seal it up tight!
Place the bag on a flat surface. Gently flip bag, end over end, for 5 minutes. Open the 1-gallon bag over a sink, and drain water. Add remaining rock salt and another 3 cups of crushed ice. Reseal. Continue flipping the bag, end over end, for 15 more minutes.
Drain the water again. Wipe the 1-quart bag filled with soft serve ice cream dry. Snip the corner and squeeze into individual bowls. Makes 1 1/2 cups of ice cream.
If you prefer a little firmer ice cream, like we do, then freeze the bag for 2-4 hours before serving.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Home-Baked Pizza Made Easy

I love this pizza dough because it is sooo stinkin easy and really good at the same time! (plus who doesn't like pizza?)

2 ½ to 3 c all-purpose flour
1 pkg active dry yeast
½ tsp salt
1 c warm water (120 to 130 degrees)
2 tbsp cooking oil or olive oil

In a large mixing bowl combine 1 ¼ c of the flour, the yeast, and salt; add warm water and oil. Beat with an electric mixer on low for 30 seconds, scraping the bowl. Beat on high for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough remaining flour to make a moderately stiff dough that is smooth and elastic. Divide dough in half. Cover and let rest for 10 mins.

Make two 12 inch thin crust pizzas, put on greased pans. We let them sit out for 30-45 mins before putting them in the oven. This isn't necessary but really makes the dough better in the end.

Bake crust on greased pans @ 425 F for ten minutes. Then take out and add sauce and toppings (this one has our favorite BBQ sauce with chicken and 3 kinds of cheese! yum!) Put into oven for 10 more minutes. You can also make mini pizzas @ 425 F, and for not as long as the bigger pizzas (8 minutes, then 5 minutes)..

You can freeze the dough as well. Thaw in fridge overnight. (This dough is actually better when it has been frozen and then thawed!!)

zucchini soup

Ok this is super easy
2 or 3 large zucchini's slice them up and cook then down till very soft in a frying pan, drain the water you wont need it.
1 cube butter
throw all of it in a blender or food processor and puree it!
THAT'S IT!!! super easy and you could throw some bacon in it or cheese or tomatoes or whatever your little heart desires!!!

BBQ Garlic Mushroom Swiss Burgers

1 lbs hamburger
2 Tbsp fresh garlic
garlic salt
soy sauce
1 onion sauted
1 cup chopped mushrooms
4 slices swiss cheese
4 oroweat sandwich thins
( honest they are delicious) buns
tomato, and all the fixin's ya like.

Mix first 5 ingredients and we judge it by smell( since you can't taste raw meat) and make 4 patties, throw them on the BBQ and cook for 5 min. or so on each side.
Saute onions and mushrooms when burgers are just about done put 1/4 the onions and mushrooms on patty and put a slice of swiss cheese on top to melt. Toast the buns (if ya like) and fix to your liking. Don't get mad at yourself if they don't turn out like Adam's garlic burgers. He has been trying to perfect them for a while now. Enjoy cuz we did!!

Seasoned Chicken Burrito

Hello! I have never done this before and so here I go.
This is DIET food so don't be alarmed it's good.
4 large chicken breasts
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 cup canned black beans
4 wheat tortillas
1 cup brown rice or uncle ben's country inn mexican fiesta rice, cooked
1 cup shredded mexican cheese
1 cup shredded iceberg lettuce
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 jalapenio chopped (optional)
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
1 avocado, diced
optional sides are 1/2 cup salsa
4 Tbsp. sour cream

preheat oven to 400*. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until done. Remove chicken and dice.
Heat beans, warm tortillias in a pan or in microwave. Divide the cooked rice and add it to the center of each tortilla; top with the chicken, lettuce, beans, onions, cilantro, tomato, and avocado. Fold up the bottom part of the tortilla, then roll each side over. I put the sour cream in also! Adam couldn't believe it was diet food!!