Friday, October 30, 2009

Honey Roasted Red Potatoes

I originally saw this recipe on the Provident Woman's blog, but also found it on
Please excuse the picture, I couldn't get a good one of these for some reason.  

1 pound red potatoes, quartered
2 tablespoons diced onion
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 pinch salt
1 pinch ground black pepper

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.  Spray a baking dish with cooking spray.
Place potatoes in a single layer in prepared dish, and top with onion. In a small bowl, combine melted butter, honey, mustard, salt and pepper; drizzle over potatoes and onion.
Bake for 35 minutes or until tender, stirring halfway through the cooking time. 
My review:  Honestly, I didn't like these as much as I wanted to.  My first mistake was not using a big enough baking dish, so the potatoes were swimming in the honey juice, which made them way too sweet for me.  I also used too much onion.  I plan to try these again, following the recipe for real, and using a bigger dish, but until then, I thought I'd share the recipe, because I'm sure someone out there will like them as much as I wanted to like them... and maybe you'll be smart enough to follow the recipe!! 

Pioneer Woman's Simple, Fried Pork Chops

From Pioneer Woman's recipe, found here.

7-8 bone in pork chops
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp season salt
cayenne pepper, to taste (a couple shakes will do it)
1 tsp black pepper
Canola Oil to cover the bottom of a frying pan (or vegetable oil, that's what I used...)
2 tbsp butter

Rinse the pork chops, then salt and pepper both sides.
Combine all the dry ingredients, then dredge your pork chops through the flour mixture.  Set aside on a plate.
Heat oil on medium high heat, and add butter.  Once the butter  is melted, add your pork chops.
Don't try to put too many in the pan, cook them 3-4 at a time.
Cook for 3-5 minutes on each side.  (it will depend how thick your pork chops are... when they have bones, it's better to get the thinner ones...)  Poke them to make sure no pink juice creeps out.
Dig in!

My review:  Usually, when eating pork chops, I prefer shake and bake, but these pork chops had an amazing flavor to them because of all the seasoning, and they got incredibly crispy and delicious.  The butter addition also made them get a really pretty shade of brown.  I'll take this over shake and bake any day!  It's a lot quicker and you don't have to heat up your oven, too!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Cookbook to end all cookbooks...

I got this in the mail yesterday.

After drooling over it for a couple hours last night, due to the deliciousness of the food and Ree's gorgeous photography, it's very safe to say that you will be seeing lots and lots of PW recipes here very soon.  It is one of the first cookbooks I've ever gotten that I want to cook from start to finish.  

Support Pioneer Woman, buy this cookbook.  It's got recipes that aren't up on her website, along with gorgeous pictures, and stories, and step by step photos of the recipes.  You seriously can't go wrong.  Buy it for yourself, buy it for a friend.  And get cooking!

French Onion Soup

I love French Onion Soup.  When I went to Paris in January, the first thing I wanted to try was real, authentic french onion soup, la soupe de l'oignon gratinée.  Unfortunately, it was the worst french onion soup I've ever had.  For some reason, I don't like it when there's wine included in the mix.  Maybe someday I will try making it with the wine, but until then, there's always Campbell's... or this recipe.  :-)

4 Large Onions, thin sliced
3 cloves Garlic, fine chopped
2 sprigs Fresh Thyme, minced
2 Tbsp Butter
2 Tbsp Flour
2 quarts (8 cups) Beef Broth
Mozzerella, Swiss, or Gruyère Cheese (shredded or sliced)
Toasted Baguette Slices or Croutons


Melt the butter on medium heat in a large pot. Add onions, garlic and thyme, and stir.
Cook for 20 minutes or until the onions and garlic are nice and caramelized.  If necessary, add a bit more butter, you don't want the onions to burn, you want them to be nice and brown and gorgeous.
Sprinkle the flour over the onions and cook for 5 minutes until thickened.
Pour in the beef broth and simmer for approximately 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Ladle the deliciousness into a bowl, and top with toasted baguette slices or croutons, and lots and lots of cheese!  I like to slice up a baguette, drizzle a cookie sheet with olive oil, place the slices on top, and drizzle with more olive oil.  Then, I sprinkle some garlic salt and fresh ground pepper over the top, and place under the broiler on low for 5 minutes.  Watch them closely, they burn easy!
If you want to take this soup to a party, it is easily doubled, and can be thrown into a crock pot!

My review:  This was so easy to make, and delicious!  I only wish that I had an oven safe bowl, because I would have thrown that sucker under the broiler and made it all browned and gooey, but unfortunately, I've only got my Corelle dishes.  So, anyone out there who loves me, and wants to buy me an oven safe bowl, please put that on my Christmas wish list.  And make this soup, cuz you'll love it!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Chicken à la King

When I was a kid, one of the staples my mom kept in the freezer was Chicken a la King packets.  They were these pouches, filled with a gravy/chicken/vegetable mixture, that was amazing over top of toast.  I remember eating them on snow days;  you would take the pouch out, and boil it in hot water, or put it in the microwave after stabbing the heck out of the bag.  This recipe tastes just like those Chicken a la King packets, and I still love it just as much.  Basically, it's like a hot chicken sandwich, with peppers, mushrooms, and peas.  Great cold weather recipe!!

1 stick butter or margarine
1 small bell pepper, chopped
1/2 small onion, chopped (omit these if you're not a fan)
8 oz. fresh mushrooms, sliced (you can also use a can of mushrooms)
1 tbsp water
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1 1/2 cups milk (I used skim)
1 1/4 cups chicken broth
2 cups cooked chicken or turkey (or even tuna)  (you can used canned chicken)
1 (2 oz jar) pimientos, drained
Toasted bread, cooked rice, or egg noodles  (it's good on french fries, too, which is the way my dad likes it)

Melt butter in a 5 quart saucepan, on medium high heat.  Once the butter is melted, add the mushrooms, green peppers, and onions.  Saute until the veggies are crisp tender.  Add the water.
Next, stir in the flour, salt, and pepper.  Turn the heat down to medium and let cook until bubbly, stirring constantly.
Remove the pan from the heat, and stir in the milk and chicken broth.  Return to heat, and keep stirring until the mixture boils.  Boil for 2 minutes, letting the sauce thicken.  Stir in the pimientos and chicken (or turkey or tuna).  Turn the heat down to medium low, and let cook until hot.
Serve over toast, cooked rice, egg noodles, or even french fries.

My review:  This recipe was delicious, and tastes just like the kind I had when I was a kid!  I also love the red and green colors of the veggies in it.  This is comfort food at its absolute best.  Try this on a cold rainy day.  You'll love it!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Steamed Cabbage

1/2 large cabbage, shredded (or a whole small cabbage)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
3 tbsp. butter

Put your shredded cabbage in a large saucepan and add water.  Sprinkle some kosher salt over the top.
Put on the stove on high, covered.
Once the water in the pot is boiling, cook for another 5 minutes, steaming the cabbage.  If it runs out of water, add more.
After it steams for five minutes, add the butter and Worcestershire sauce.  Cover and turn heat down to medium.
Cook for about 10 minutes, covered, or until the cabbage is soft.

My review:   I love this.  It gives the cabbage such a good flavor.  Paired with sausage and potatoes, it is one of my favorite meals.

Crispy Red Potatoes

4 large red potatoes
Vegetable oil

Wash your potatoes.  Pierce each one once with a fork.
Microwave the potatoes for 8 minutes.
Slice the potatoes.
Coat the bottom of a skillet with vegetable oil and heat on medium high.
Once the oil is hot, add the potatoes.
Season the potatoes with salt and pepper.
Cook on medium high, turning as needed.  This won't take long, since you mostly cooked the potatoes in the microwave.
They are done when they're all crispy and brown!

My review:  These are yummy.  I like to bake the potatoes first, because they get nice and crispy that way, and they don't take so long!  You can also use regular potatoes.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Chicken Enchilada Soup

It's no secret that I have a great love for all of Pioneer Woman's recipes.  So, when she created Tasty Kitchen, I was very excited, because it would be this huge community of wonderful cooks, sharing all of their wonderful recipes.  This recipe was featured on the side as a "Ree Recommends" recipe.  Thank you, Ree, for recommending this recipe, and thanks to RealMomKitchen for sharing.  I love CrockPot recipes, and this one is definitely going to stay in my file.

1 can Black Beans, Rinsed And Drained
1 can Diced Tomatoes
1 package (10 Oz.) Frozen Corn
½ cups Onion, Chopped
½ cups Red Pepper, Diced
1 can (10 Oz) Enchilada Sauce
1 can Condensed Cream Of Chicken Soup
1-½ cup Milk
2 whole Chicken Breasts
Pepper Jack Cheese, Sour Cream, Crushed Tortilla Chips for topping!

In a 3 1/2 to 5-quart slow cooker, combine drained beans, tomatoes, corn, onion, and bell pepper. Place 2 chicken breasts on top of the mixture.
In a large bowl, whisk together the enchilada sauce and soup. Gradually whisk in milk until smooth. Pour sauce mixture over ingredients in cooker. Cover; cook on low heat for 6 to 8 hours or on high for 3 to 4 hours.
Remove chicken and cut or shred into bite-sized pieces. Add chicken back into the soup. Top with pepper jack cheese and serve. The soup can also be topped with avocado, sour cream, or crushed tortilla chips.

My review:  This was a delicious, filling soup.  I used skim milk, which I think made it a little thinner, but that was good for me.  Definitely make this.  And enjoy!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Mexican Stuffed Shells

24 jumbo pasta shells
1 pound ground beef
2 cups salsa
1 (8oz) can tomato sauce
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 cup frozen corn
1/2 cup black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 cup mexican cheese blend
Optional Toppings:  black olives, salsa, green onions, sour cream, fresh tomatoes

Cook the pasta shells as directed on package. Drain in a colander and run cool water on them to cool, making them easier for handling, when it's time to fill them.
While your pasta is cooking, brown your ground beef and drain.  Add the 2 cups of salsa, tomato sauce, frozen corn, and black beans, and mix well.
Fill the shells with the beef mixture, and arrange in a baking dish.
Sprinkle cheese over the top of the shells.
Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees F.
Serve with any desired toppings:  my favorites are salsa, sour cream, and fresh tomatoes.

My review:  My mom made these once a couple years ago, and I was hooked on them.  They are delicious! I think they also make a fun appetizer for parties.

Steak Sauce Pot Roast and Noodles

1 (2-3 pound) beef roast
1 (8 oz container) fresh mushrooms, sliced  (or 1 can of mushrooms, drained)
1 medium onion, sliced thinly
1-2 cups water
3/4 cup A-1 Steak Sauce
Garlic Powder
Pepper (Fresh Ground or the powdery stuff)
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup flour
1/2 pound egg noodles, cooked as directed on package OR hot cooked rice

In a large crockpot, create a bed of mushrooms and onions, with the middle "hollowed out".  (leave space in the middle for your roast)
Place the roast in the middle of the crockpot.  Pour the water over top of the roast, using your judgement on how much to add.  I used about 1 1/2 cups.  Season the roast with garlic powder and pepper.  Pour the A-1 over the roast.
Turn your crock pot on low for 7-10 hours.  You can do it on high for 4-5 hours, but it will be more moist and tender if you do 7-10 hours on LOW.
Once your roast is finished, (when you get home from work or a long day of shopping!), use a soup ladle or large spoon, and spoon off some or all of the juicy stuff, and all the mushrooms and onions you can grab and put in a small saucepan.  Place on the stove on medium high heat.  Mix the milk and flour together with a fork, trying to get rid of any lumps.  Once your "broth" comes to a boil, add in the milk mixture slowly, stirring as you go.
Keep stirring, on medium high heat, until the gravy thickens and comes to a boil.
Now you're ready to assemble the deliciousness!  Start with a bed of egg noodles (or rice), top with some gravy, then top with your meat (or put it on our side, if you like, because that's what I did) and top again with a little more gravy.

My review:  This is the best pot roast ever.  Carrots can be added to it too.  But, back to the roast:  it is the most moist pot roast ever, with insanely good flavor.  It reminded me of steak, but the meat melts in your mouth.  Absolute deliciousness.  Try it sometime!!  It can also be done in the oven, baked for 2 hours on 350 degrees F, but if you have a crockpot, USE IT!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Chicken Cordon Bleu Wraps

This recipe makes 2-3 wraps.

2 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts, chopped in bite size pieces or strips
4 tbsp dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
6 slices of thin sliced cooked deli ham
2 slices mozzerella cheese
2 slices swiss cheese
2-3 Burrito size tortillas

In a small skillet sprayed with cooking spray, cook your chicken until cooked through.
Once it is cooked, spoon the dijon mustard over the chicken, and reduce to low heat.  Stir to mix the chicken up with the mustard.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Careful with the salt, the ham will add a salty taste to the wrap.
In a separate pan, heat up the ham.  You won't need to spray the pan with anything, just throw the ham on medium heat to let it get warm.  Once it's warmed up, remove the ham.
Place one burrito in the pan.  Place desired amount of ham (I prefer 3 slices, since it's thin-sliced) on the bottom.  Then, spoon 1/3-1/2 of the chicken over top.  If you like dijon mustard a lot,  you can add some more at this step.  It's up to you!  Top with one slice of each cheese, and wrap up.  Flip it over, so that the folded size is now on the heat.  This will melt your cheese.  Repeat with the 2nd (and possibly the 3rd) wrap.

My review:  This is a quick, easy sandwich I like to whip up for myself on weekends.  I always have chicken breasts in my freezer, so this is a go-to for me.  I love all the flavors mixed together.  You can also do this on a bun, if you prefer.   Leave the chicken breasts whole when cooking, add the dijon mustard, and top with ham and cheese on a kaiser roll.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Eggplant Parmesan

What do you do when you find cheap eggplants at a farmer's market?  You make eggplant parmesan!

1 large eggplant or 2 small eggplants
2 eggs
2 tsp milk
1 cup flour
1 1/2 cup Seasoned Breadcrumbs
3 tbsp Parmesan Cheese (the powdery stuff)
Olive Oil
1 tbsp butter
1 jar of your favorite pasta sauce
Sliced Mozzerella Cheese (anywhere from 4-8 slices) (about 1/2 cup - 1 cup)

Slice your eggplant(s) into discs, about 1/2 inch thick.
Crack the eggs into a bowl, add the milk, and beat with a whisk or a fork.
Put the flour in another bowl.
And finally, in another bowl (yes, I do LOVE doing dishes.... haha), put your breadcrumps and parmesan cheese.
Dip each eggplant disc into the flour, then the egg, then the breadcrumbs, and arrange in a single layer on a plate.  Doing this with a fork while reduce the mess, but if you like to get your hands dirty, be my guest.
Heat olive oil in a pan, making sure that you have enough to cover the whole bottom of the pan, but you don't want your eggplant to swim in it.  Medium heat should be good enough for this.  Add your butter in as well (this will give a nice, golden brown crust to the eggplant.  If you want to leave it out, that's fine).
Once the oil is hot, fry your eggplant until the breading is browned. 
Dry the eggplant on paper towels to soak up the extra olive oil
Spread some sauce in the bottom of a 13x9 baking dish.  Layer the eggplant slices in the dish.  Pour your desired amount of sauce on top and spread around.  Then sprinkle cheese on top.  I don't like a ton of sauce, so I don't normally use the whole jar.
Bake for 35 minutes at 350 degrees F.
Serve with hot pasta or fresh Italian bread.

My review:  This was delicious!  Very easy to make, and tasted like it was from a restaurant.  I actually halved the recipe, and made it in an 8x8 baking dish.  It was perfect!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Pumpkin Crisp

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
1 cup evaporated milk (this is a little less than the normal sized can)
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 heaping teaspoon of cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
1 package of a butter recipe yellow cake mix
1 cup chopped pecans
2 sticks of butter, melted

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
Spray a 13x9 baking dish with cooking spray.
Mix together the pumpkin, milk, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon.
Pour the mixture into the greased dish.
Sprinkle the dry cake mix evenly over the pumpkin mixture.
Sprinkle the pecans over the cake mix.
Drizzle the butter over the top.
Bake for 1 hour.
Serve with whipped cream, ice cream, or milk.  I had to try it as soon as it was out of the oven, because it smelled so good!

My review:  This is now my favorite pumpkin recipe EVER.  Forget pumpkin pie, pumpkin whoopie pies, and pumpkin delights.  This is delicious.  I will definitely be making this again and again.

Sausage Gravy and Biscuits

1 pound sausage (pork sausage, turkey sausage, chicken sausage, whatever)
1/2 onion, finely chopped
6 tbsp all-purpose flour
4 cups milk
1/2 tsp season salt
1/4 tsp salt
Squirt of Worcestshire sauce
Squirt of Tabasco
Fresh Ground Pepper, to taste
1 tube of Grands! Biscuits

Cook the sausage and onion until browned in a deep skillet.  Drain all drippings, except for a small amount (about 2-3 tbsp).  If you used chicken or turkey sausage, you may not have enough drippings, and will have to add a few tablespoons of butter.
Stir in the flour, and cook the mixture over low heat, stirring, until the mixture is bubbly and golden.
Stir in the milk and seasonings.  Cook on medium heat until thickened.
Serve with biscuits, cutting them in half, and topping with the sausage gravy.  If having this for dinner, I suggest peas to go with it.  It's weird, but believe me.

My review:  This is good comfort food.  My uncle makes the best I've ever had, but I like using this recipe when I make it.  The tabasco gives it just enough heat to make it interesting.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Breakfast Burritos!

This makes 2 burritos, so adjust to fit your crowd.  I usually make enough for 2, then refrigerate half to have the next morning.  This particular one contains mushrooms, red and green peppers, turkey sausage, and tomato.  I don't think I've ever made them the same way twice!

2 eggs
3 tbsp milk
1/4 tsp Tabasco sauce
1/4 tsp season salt
Sausage, ham, or bacon (cooked)
Your choice of sliced and diced veggies: green pepper, red pepper, onion, mushroom, tomato, baked potato, broccoli
2 burrito size tortillas
Cheese, if desired (American or Cheddar Jack are my faves)
Salsa if desired

In a tablespoon of olive oil, saute your veggies.  While they are cooking, crack your eggs into a bowl.  Add milk, tabasco, and season salt.  Whisk those puppies until the yolks are broken and your egg mixture is fluffy.  When your veggies are close to being cooked, add in your choice of meat.  Let the meat and veggies heat up.  Once everything is heated, add in your egg mixture and scramble.  When your eggs are fully cooked, top with cheese.  After your cheese is melted, split in half on a warm tortilla (microwave for 10 seconds).  Roll up and enjoy! 

Tip:  Saute your veggies and cook the meat the night before.  This leaves less preparation for the morning, and you can get out the door faster!  You can chop everything up and refrigerate in a container.  In the morning, just throw into your omelet pan to heat up, and then add your eggs!

My review:  These are so good, and a lighter version than what you can find at a fast food restaurant, not to mention CHEAPER!  I usually use whatever leftover veggies I may have from the night before.  It's a nice quick breakfast to start your day!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Cheddar Broccoli Soup

1 can chicken broth
1 onion, diced thin (use whatever size you like, depending on how much of the onion flavor you want)
1/3 cup flour
1/2 stick butter
1/2 tsp pepper
2 cups skim milk (or whatever milk you like)
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded swiss cheese
3-4 cups steamed broccoli (use fresh, you won't regret it!!!)

In a small saucepan, simmer the onions and chicken broth, until the onions are soft, which will take about 20 minutes.
Heat the milk in the microwave for a few minutes.
In a stock pot, melt the butter.  Once it's melted, add the flour and pepper.  Stir until combined.
Whisk in the warm milk.  Heat on medium high heat until thick, stirring the whole time.
Add in the chicken broth and onions, and stir to combine.
Add the cheese and broccoli, and stir again to combine.
Enjoy it!  Serve with french bread, or in bread bowls.

My review: I used skim milk and reduced fat cheeses in this, and could tell absolutely no difference. There's a ton of broccoli in this soup, but that's what made it good.  This and some french bread is all you need for a meal!  This soup was just what I needed on the coldest day of the year so far.  Yum!

Shrimp Quesadillas that would make Bubba proud...

I adapted this recipe a little bit from Pioneer Woman.  I prefer my peppers and onions diced up into small pieces, and to keep my shrimp whole.  But mostly, this recipe came from P-Dub, and it's delicious!

  1 lb. Shrimp (36 count), tailed and deveined
6 tortillas (burrito size)
2 cups Shredded Colby Jack Cheese
1 onion, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 green pepper, diced
1 (8oz) bottle mexican red sauce (taco sauce)
Olive Oil
Cooking Spray
Sour Cream and Salsa for dipping

Pour sauce over shrimp and put aside.
Saute onions and peppers in olive oil on high heat until browned.  Remove from skillet.
Keeping your skillet on high heat, pour the shrimp and sauce into the skillet.  Don't stir often, cooking until the shrimp are opaque.  (you can remove the shrimp here and chop into pieces if you like, otherwise, just turn off the heat, and leave them in the pan.)
Spray another skillet with cooking spray, and heat to medium heat.  place a tortilla in the skillet, layer ingredients on one side, cheese, shrimp, veggies, cheese, and then fold over.  Cook on both sides.
Slice into wedges and serve.
I like to have mine with rice and beans, and dip them in sour cream and salsa.

My review:  I would make this again.  I loved it.  One of those things like fish tacos that you don't think you'll like, but when you try it, it's like hmm, not bad.  It was nice to try something different.  I love seafood, but don't eat it very often.  This was a nice change. 

Apple Crisp

5 apples (any cooking apple, I prefer Macintosh)
3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup oats
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Peel and slice the apples.  Arrange in a baking dish, 8x8 square works well, but so do pretty pie plates!
Mix the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt together.  Cut in the stick of butter.
Sprinkle mixture on top of apples.
Bake for 35 minutes.

My review:  Yum!  Nothing better in the fall than a big bowl of this straight from the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.  I could eat the topping off of this for the rest of my life.  Delicious!