Posts tagged ‘easy meal’

April 12, 2012

chicken meatballs

Ever tried ground chicken?  Our first attempt, thanks to the Chicken Meatballs with Peanut Sauce  recipe in Family Circle’s April issue, was a success!

The process is extremely similar to other meatball recipes…imagine that!  Mix the ingredients, form into balls, brown, simmer in sauce.

The tasty meatball flavor compliments the not too heavy or spicy peanut sauce.  Serve with basmati rice & a fresh veggie.

“I always say centered food equals centered behavior.”  ~ Marilu Henner

February 29, 2012

leapin’ greens

To some, attempting to eat greens (collard, mustard, turnip) may come once every four years.  I was in that camp…until recently.  My southern relatives will be proud.

At a buck twenty-nine a bunch, what’s to lose??

Above:  mustard greens.   Below the greens:  ham hock (surely you have one in your freezer!), two cans great northern beans (drained), one can chicken broth, bay leaf, wee bit Louisiana hot sauce, salt/pepper

Slow cook for 6-8 hours on low, or start on high for 1 hour then reduce to low for 4 hours.

The greens were SO tasty.  Similar to spinach, but more interesting & a better texture.  A greens only recipe:  any greens with a bit of water, butter, salt/pepper, splash of hot sauce, simmer on stove until done (45 -60 min).

“You think I don’t have culture just because I’m from down in Georgia. Believe  me, we’ve got culture there. We’ve always had sushi. We just called it bait.”  ~ Ben “Cooter” Jones

February 20, 2012

winner dinner

A friend shared the following delicious, easy recipe for stromboli…

In the morning, place a frozen bread dough loaf in a pan & cover with plastic wrap.

At dinner time, take the risen dough & roll or pat out on floured surface making a 10″ x 14″ rectangle.

Have ingredients ready to layer, leaving a 1″ dough border all around perimeter.

Traditionally, stromboli ingredients are meat & cheese only.  However, many different combos work.  Any wet ingredients need to be drained, squeezed, & patted dry.

Layer ingredients, roll up. seal edges with egg wash (whipped up egg), & top with egg wash for color.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.  Slice & serve with red sauce.

The best part about the stromboli?  Everyone liked it!

January 13, 2012

chicken chowder

A delicious, simple soup for chilly days: 

The ingredients fall into the “have on hand” category & the diced apple added a little extra yummy.  The only addition made was adding turmeric for color.

Recipe from Penzey’s Spices: 

Melt 1/2 stick butter in stock pot & add, diced:  1 onion, 1 carrot, 1 celery stalk, 1/2 bell pepper

Cook for 2-3 minutes.  Sprinkle 1/4 cup flour, salt, fresh ground pepper, stir until combined.  Mix in 1 cup boiling water gradually until combined.  Stir in 28 oz. diced tomatoes, reduce heat to medium low, add:  1 peeled, diced apple, 1 tsp. thyme, 1 T. parsley flakes.  Simmer 30 minutes.  Add 3 cups milk & 1 cup diced, cooked chicken, heat through.

“He gave you the nice face discount.”  ~ Jerry, to Elaine, in “The Soup Nazi”

December 20, 2011

crockpot mondays

December’s dinner experiment.  Similar to “pizza Fridays” or “taco Tuesdays”.  These ideas simplify meal-time & add stability to chaotic evening life.  Now, I’m not a fan of being a stickler to these sorts of routines, but there are times when planning = lower stress.

Last night’s meal:  Curried Chicken Stew – tasty!  And, we have leftovers for another meal.  Two birds with one stone!  pow!pow!  Okay, actually, 4 birds.   Whatever.

  • trim the fat & brown 8 chicken thighs in 2 T. olive oil, 8 minutes
  • bottom of crockpot – 6 carrots in chunks, 1 onion in wedges
  • combine 1 can coconut milk & 1/4 cup curry paste, pour 1/2 of mixture over veggies
  • top with chicken, skin sides up, cover, low setting for 7-8 hours
  • pour remaining mixture over top, serve with cilantro, golden raisins &/or crushed red pepper

The recipe is from Better Homes & Gardens December 2011 magazine.  Go to BHG’s website to find tons of crockpot recipes. 

“I dream of a better tomorrow…where chickens can cross roads & not have their motives questioned.”  ~ unknown

December 16, 2011

bar hopping

For the whole family!  TGIF!…  

Salad & deli bars in grocery stores are great alternatives to drive-thrus & sit down restaurants.  Plenty of choices for everyone, quick, no one has to decide based on a menu, & options always contain fresh produce.  Grab a plastic container, peruse what is available & enjoy watching the combos the kids put together!  A treat for everyone without breaking the bank.

“The age of your children is a key factor in how quickly you are served in a restaurant.  We once had a waiter in Canada who said, ‘Could I get you your check?’ and we answered, ‘How about the menu first?'”  ~ Erma Bombeck

November 10, 2011

concept cooking

The other day, I thought I had hash browns in the freezer for the breakfast casserole on deck for dinner.  Turns out, I had to substitute with the only frozen potato forms available…5 tater-tots & 8 french fries.  Being a recipe geek, a mild panic crept in that dinner was going to flop.  Until, I shared with chef hubbie my wariness, to which he replied, “Breakfast casserole is a concept.  It will be fine.”. 

Light-bulb moment. 

How true!  And so many other meals are mere concepts ready for adaptation.

  • pizza
  • practically anything Mexican
  • stuffed pepper – pick your pepper, starch, protein, veg, go!
  • sandwiches
  • meatloaf, meatballs or burgers
  • pasta salad
  • casseroles!

“I feel a recipe is only a theme, which an intelligent cook can play each time with variation.”  ~ Madam Benoit

September 8, 2011

egg eaters

Try this Mini Frittatas recipe (October Family Circle) with left-overs:

12 cup muffin tin (spray with non-stick), 3 cups cooked meat & veg, shredded cheddar, 8 beaten eggs with salt & pepper – layer as listed & bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

Combo above:  cooked crumbled italian sausage, roasted cauliflower, sage, onion.  Other thoughts:

  • bacon, tomato (seeds out unless you dig soggy), onion
  • breakfast sausage, peppers, mushrooms
  • broccoli, potatoes
  • serving size is perfect, freeze for a quick meal anytime or on the go, great way to use left-overs
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