Thursday, January 31, 2013

This is delicious! Makes for a great brunch item or serve a nice salad with it for a great dinner! Enjoy :)


1 refrigerated pie crust          

5 tablespoons, butter

9 ounces baby spinach

½ cup chopped onions

3 cloves fresh garlic, minced

2 cups sharp cheddar, grated

2 eggs

2/3 cup heavy whipping cream

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper

3 to 4 small tomatoes, sliced thin (I use Campari tomatoes)

Line a tart pan or a pie pan with pie crust and bake at 400 for 10 minutes then take out of the oven and set aside.  In a large skillet, cook the spinach and onion in the butter just until the spinach is wilted (about 4 minutes).  Add the garlic and sauté for 1 more minute.  Spread this mixture over the bottom of the pie crust.  In a large bowl, using a hand mixer, mix eggs, cheese, cream, mustard and seasonings well and pour over spinach mixture.  Place the tomato slices on top and bake at 400 for 25-35 minutes.  Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Of course fried okra is hard to beat, but this makes for a nice little side dish. I really miss summertime and fresh veggies from the farmer's market, but frozen okra and corn will have to do for now :) Try this...I think you'll like it!

Okra & Tomatoes & Corn
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound of frozen sliced okra
8-ounces frozen kernel corn
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon white sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in a skillet and add okra and corn.  Cook for about 5 to 8 minutes, stirring often.  Add the tomatoes, sugars and salt and pepper and turn on very low heat, cover and simmer for about  20 minutes.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My homemade guacamole dip...a great muchie to serve for your Superbowl party!

2 ripe avocados, peeled and diced
½ cup onion, chopped
½ cup fresh tomato, chopped
3 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 ½ tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, diced ( I remove the seeds)
1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, optional
In a bowl, use a fork to mash avocados, then add remaining ingredients and stir well.  Serve with chips or veggies.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Stuffed Bell Pepper Soup....warms your soul!

4 bell peppers cut into bite-size pieces (I like to use one in each color)
Olive oil and salt and pepper to taste
Place chopped peppers onto a shallow baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper.  Bake at 400 for 20 minutes.  Meanwhile, cook the beef.
1 ½ lb. ground beef
½ cup onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
In a large soup pot, brown beef, onion and garlic together; drain and place the meat mixture back into the large soup pot, and add the following ingredients:
1 tablespoon flour (stir into meat)
Bell peppers
1 can beef broth
½ to ¾ cup brown sugar
1 can tomato soup+ 2 soup cans full of water
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
4 tablespoons beef granules
Salt and pepper to taste
Dash of cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons Tony Chachere’s seasoning
2 bags cooked Success Rice
Stir well, bring to a soft boil then cover and simmer on low for one hour or as long as you would like.  I serve this with cornbread or garlic bread and a nice salad.  It’s delicious!

My Italian-Stuffed Shells...simple & Delicious :)

1 box jumbo pasta shells, cooked and drained
1 (15-ounce) carton Ricotta Cheese
1 box frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed and drained well
½ cup grated parmesan
1 egg
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste
2 jars of your favorite spaghetti sauce (I love Bertolli Olive Oil & Garlic)
1 (8-ounce) package grated mozzarella cheese
In a large bowl, mix together ricotta, spinach, parmesan, egg, garlic salt, Italian seasoning and salt and pepper.  Stir well.   Stuff each shell with a tablespoon of cheese mixture (you will have about a dozen shells left over).  Pour ½ jar of the sauce onto the bottom of a greased 13x9x2 oven-proof dish  and then place the stuffed shells on top of the sauce.  Pour all but about a half of jar of remaining sauce evenly over your stuffed shells.  Bake for 25 minutes.  Remove from the oven and sprinkle mozzarella cheese over the sauce .  Return to the oven and bake 10 to 15 minutes more or just until the cheese is melted.  Let  sit about 5-10 minutes before serving.  Sometimes I just serve a nice salad with this, and other times, I serve it with grilled chicken or grilled Italian sausage.  Enjoy!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Meatloaf, Sugar Snap Peas & Potato Casserole...complete comfort food! Enjoy :)

Wonderful Meatloaf
Sugar Snap Peas
Potato Casserole
Oh, My!  This is not your average Meatloaf!  It’s going knock your socks off!  Makes great Meatloaf sandwiches the next day!  This, too, is another beautiful dish…so colorful on the plate.
Wonderful Meatloaf
2 pounds ground sirloin                                              ¼ cup steak sauce
1 small onion, minced                                                 3 T. ketchup
1 green bell pepper, chopped                                      1 t. salt and pepper
¾ cup brown sugar                                                      2 t. onion powder
2 t. garlic powder                               
½ cup (about 20) saltines                                            Mustard Sauce
2 large eggs                                                                 Tomato Sauce
Combine ground sirloin and next 10 ingredients; shape mixture into a loaf.  Place on a jellyroll pan lined with foil or parchment paper.  Spread mustard sauce over meatloaf then pour tomato sauce mixture over mustard sauce.  Bake at 375 for 1 hour.  Let it sit for about 10 minutes before serving.  8-10 Servings
Mustard Sauce                                                          Tomato Sauce
                                                                                    1 cup tomato puree
½ cup firmly packed brown sugar                              1 8-ounce can of tomato sauce
¼ cup yellow mustard                                                 ¼ teaspoon each of salt, pepper
Stir together in a small bowl until smooth.                 And garlic salt
Sugar Snap Peas
1lb. bag frozen sugar snap peas
2 T olive oil
2 T sugar
Pepper to taste
In a skillet sauté’ sugar snap peas on high in olive oil for 2 minutes then sprinkle sugar over top and sauté for 8 more minutes.  Pepper to taste.
Potato Casserole
¾ cup butter, divided
30 ounce package of frozen country style hash browns, thawed
1 can cream celery soup
8 ounce container of sour cream
1 8 ounce package of sharp cheddar
1 t. each of salt and pepper
2 cups crushed cornflake cereal
Place ½ cup butter in a 13x9x2 pan and place it in an oven on 350 for 7 minutes or until melted.  Spread hash browns over butter; stir together soup and next 3 ingredients and spread over hash browns.  Heat remaining ¼ cup butter for about 30 seconds in the microwave or until melted.  Stir together crushed cornflakes and ¼ cup melted butter.  Sprinkle over casserole and bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

Friday, January 18, 2013

My Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup...this will warm your soul!

1 (3-4 lb.) whole chicken (one with a pop-up timer is ideal)
Olive oil
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon each of salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon coriander
2 stalks celery cut into big pieces
1 onion, chopped
Rinse chicken well and be sure to pull the bag of goodies out of its cavity J  Pat dry and set aside.  Mix all dry seasonings together, drizzle olive oil all over chicken and rub spices all over chicken and inside of it.  Place onions in the bottom of a crock pot and place seasoned chicken on top of onions.  Place celery pieces on top of the chicken and cover.  There is no need to add any liquid because it will make its own.  Cook on high for 4 hours or until pop-up timer pops up.  Remove chicken from crock pot, let cool then pull all of the meat off the chicken discarding the bones but reserving the drippings.  Set meat aside.
Next Step:
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 carrots, washed peeled and sliced
1 onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon flour
1 (49 ½-ounce) can chicken broth
Reserved drippings from chicken in the crock pot (make sure there are no small bones)
2 tablespoons chicken granules
1 tablespoon each of salt and pepper (add more if desired)
½ cup half and half (optional)
1 (8-ounce) bag wide egg noodles
In a large soup pot, sauté carrots, onions and celery in olive oil for 3 to 4 minutes.  Add parsley and garlic and sauté another 2 minutes over medium heat.  Sprinkle flour over veggies and stir well.  Add the broth, cooked chicken, reserved drippings from crock pot, chicken granules and salt and pepper.  Simmer on low for 30 minutes.  Add half and half and egg noodles and cook on low for 12 minutes or until noodles are cooked. 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

These biscuits will cause you to be a hero with your family!!

SPRITE BISCUITS 3 cups Bisquick ½ cup sour cream ½ cup Sprite or 7UP (not diet) 3 tablespoons sugar 8 tablespoons butter, melted and divided Mix first 4 ingredients together with a fork. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and roll out just a little with a rolling pin. (You want your biscuits to be thick). Cut dough into squares with a knife. Place 3 tablespoons melted butter in a 11x8 glass baking dish. Place cut biscuits on top of the melted butter. Sprinkle with sugar and brush a little butter over each biscuit. Bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven and brush each biscuit with a little more melted butter. These are great with honey butter 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

This Pasta Pizza Bake is delicious! Made it for my family last night, and it was a hit! Enjoy!

8-ounces of spiral or corkscrew pasta, cooked and drained
1 (7-ounce) stick pepperoni, sliced
½ roll Jimmy Dean Italian sausage (you can find this by the bacon)
1 cup mushrooms, sliced (optional)
½ cup onion, chopped
3 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
½ to 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
¼ cup dry red wine, optional
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper
6 to 8 slices fresh mozzarella
Grated Parmesan cheese and fresh thin-sliced basil for garnish
Cook pasta and set aside.  Sauté’ pepperoni in a skillet on medium-high just for 2 to 3 minutes.  It will get crispy fast.  Remove pepperoni and place on paper towels to drain.  Now add Italian sausage to the pepperoni drippings and cook until browned.  Remove sausage and place on paper towels.  Remove all but 2 tablespoons of the grease from the pan and sauté’ onion and mushroom for 2 to 3 minutes.  Add fresh garlic, red wine, seasonings and crushed tomatoes.  Simmer on low for about 10 minutes.  Now add the pasta and Italian sausage to the sauce and stir well.  Remove from heat and place fresh mozzarella slices over top of pasta mixture.  Lastly, place pepperoni slices all around the top.  Broil in an oven for 1 to 2 minutes or just until the mozzarella is melted.  Watch closesly J  Garnish with grated parmesan and fresh basil.