Sunday, May 29, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

We are back from vacation! Sorry about the lack in posts...but for the most part we had a great time and very little computer time! We came back to it being hot and humid here...not what we had on the coast in Maine. Of course we had no food in the house, so I was scrambling Sunday morning to get a menu planned and a food list made! It will continue to be pretty hot this week, so lots of grilling and crock pot meals!

-Mango Colada Muffins
-Peanut Butter French Toast Enchiladas

-Hummus Chicken Wraps
-Mango Chicken with Coconut Rice
-Cheeseburger Pasta
-Macaroon Crusted Tilapia

Friday, May 20, 2011

Oreo Chocolate Chip Cookies

I found a couple of good deals on "more natural" oreos this past weekend! Can't beat 75 cents and 99 cents. Problem is my boys want to eat them constantly...even if some were for vacation! I decided to try one of the many oreo recipes I keep finding and it's raining so it was perfect cookie making weather!

I did double the recipe and cut back the sugar! This is my version!

Oreo Chocolate Chip Cookies-adapted from Picky Palate
2 sticks butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups wheat flour
1 cup white flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips
about 8-10 oreos(I used Back to Nature brand, feel free to use more if you want), broken into quarters

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cream together butter and sugars, add in one egg at a time and beat until combined. Add in vanilla and mix to combine. Add in dry ingredients and mix until combined. Fold in chocolate chips and oreo pieces. Scoop out with scoop and place on cookie sheet. Bake for 8-10 mins until edges are browned.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Beef and Peppers

I love looking at Pioneer Woman's blog...her pictures are truly stunning even if they are of food! This one roped me right in!

Beef with Peppers-adapted from Pioneer Woman
1 lb steak(I used london broil) thinly sliced
2 sweet peppers, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 pkg rice noodles
1/2 cup soy sauce
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp minced ginger
1 tsp hot sauce(or chili paste)

Mix together hot sauce, soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, and corn starch. Add in beef and stir to combine, allow to marinate. Cook rice noodles according to the package directions.

Preheat frying pan or wok. Add in 1 tbsp oil, once hot add in onions and cook for 1-2 mins until edges become brown, but still tender. Remove from pan. Heat pan back up and add in another tbsp of oil add in peppers and cooked for a few mins until edges are brown but peppers are still al dente. Remove from the pan. Heat pan up again and add in beef until browned and caramelized, 2 mins per side(approx.). Add veggies back in and stir to combine. Add the marinade into the pan and cook for about 5 mins. Stir in noodles.

**This was delicious...despite the fact that I over cooked the noodles, so next time I'll cook them less! I will also double the sauce/marinade. K really enjoyed it!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

2 Quiches-one meat, one meat freer!

Not sure if you have ever gone out to eat on Mother's day, but it's usually crazy busy! So we opted to stay home and have our friends over instead! I had the meat quiche on the menu for this week, but our friends are meat big deal as quiche is easy to adapt to vegetarian. So I made one of each!

I'm not usually a quiche fan, but this one sounded really good and I'm always looking for new ways to use Italian Sausage.

Italian Sausage, Tomato, and Cheddar Quiche-Woman's Day Magazine
1 pie crust
6 oz italian sausage(I used 3 links, 2 sweet, 1 hot),casings removed
1 pint grape tomatoes, quartered
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 onion, chopped
4 eggs
3/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven 425 degrees.
Place pie crust in pie plate and bake for 12-15 mins until golden brown. Remove from the oven and drop temperature down to 375.

Place sausages in pan and brown, breaking up meat as you go. Add onion and cook about 5 mins. Remove from pan and drain.

In a large bowl mix together eggs, sour cream, and milk. Season with salt and pepper. Fold in sausage/onion, cheese, and tomatoes. Bake for 35-45 until knife inserted into middle comes out clean.

**This was pretty good, at first it wasn't cooked long enough as I don't have 2 pie plates so this was thicker than a regular pie would be. But after cooking for another 15 mins or so, it was finally done. I did notice it was a bit wetter, but I think this was from the tomatoes, so the crust wasn't as crispy as I would like. But those of us who ate it all enjoyed it...although we liked the flavor of the vegetarian one better. So next time I'll add in a bit of shredded parmesan cheese to this one as well!

Vegetarian Quiche-my own creation, using the base of the above recipe!

This quiche you can use anything you would like to go in it! Broccoli, spinach, peppers, onions, zucchini, etc. 

Base of above recipe(eggs, sour cream, milk, and cheese)
leftover steak fries, chopped
1 jar roasted red peppers, chopped, drained well
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese

Directions, see above! Just put in the potatoes, parm cheese, and peppers in place of the sauage/tomatoes!

**We all LOVED this one! Even my husband who is usually against anything vegetarian(although he will eat it) liked it better than the sausage one! He is a huge sausage fan, so this was a surprise for me!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Tasty Tuesday-5/17

Hawaiian Pulled Pork Sandwiches-What's Gabby Cooking?
Oatmeal Brunch Casserole-Mo'BEtta
Chocolate Hummus-Debbi Does Dinner Healthy
Triple Threat Chocolate Fudge PB Cookies-How Sweet It Is
Cranberry Crumb Muffins-Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker

Monday, May 16, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

-Eggs, bacon, fruit salad
-Maple Oatmeal French Toast(made from Maple Oatmeal Bread)

-Sausage Lasagna Calzones
-Crispy Margarita Chicken Tacos with Strawberry Avocado Salsa
-BLT Pasta(new!)
-Grilled Chicken, Salad, Grilled Potatoes
-BBQ Chicken, Cheddar Braid,salad

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Dark Chocolate Blueberry Muffins

I finally found some Special Dark Cocoa Powder at the store one week...I even paid the OUTRAGEOUS price for it. Now I LOVE the that means I am going to have to find a good deal on it soon! I made these muffins and they were DELICIOUS!

I also made it twice in one week...once as muffins and again as bread for a Mother's Day dessert!

Dark Chocolate Blueberry Muffins(or bread)-shared from How Sweet It Is
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup ap flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp dark cocoa powder
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup blueberries
1/4-1/2 cup chocolate chips(I used semi sweet)
raw sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare muffin tins or loaf pan.

Mix together the dry ingredients. Stir in butter, egg, vanilla, and milk. Fold in blueberries and chocolate chips. Scoop into muffin tins or loaf pan. Sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake for 13-16 mins until cooked through(for muffins) or about 45 mins for bread.(Watch this, I didn't pay attention to how long I cooked it for, so it's a guess!)

**These were delicious! I think they are my favorite muffin at the moment! I do love me some chocolate and having the blueberries in them add a great contrast to the chocolate flavor! I didn't sprinkle the bread with a touch of sugar, but wished I had, I love the crunch it adds to it!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes with Peanut Butter Syrup

I love trying new pancake recipes and I finally had some bananas to use up!

Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes with Peanut Butter Syrup-shared from Recipe Shoebox
1 1/2 cups flour(I used ww and ap)
3 tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg
1 tbsp oil
2 medium bananas, mashed
chocolate chips

For syrup:
1/2 cup maple syrup(I did use the real stuff)
1/4 cup peanut butter

Mix together the dry ingredients, add in the wet ingredients and mix until combined. Do not overmix. Place batter on hot griddle and sprinkle with chocolate chips. Flip over when bubbles start to form around the edges.

Place peanut butter and syrup into a microwave safe bowl. Heat for 1 min and stir. This should give you a nice syrup mixture, heat at 30 sec more until peanut butter has melted. Serve over pancakes.

**These were a very moist pancake. The peanut syrup was delicious, but it still made too much despite cutting it in half. Next time I'll make even less, but I think they would be great with just plan syrup as well!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Monday, May 9, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

For Mother's Day we had friends over for lunch time!
-Sausage, Tomato, Cheddar Quiche
-Roasted Red Pepper, Potato, and Parmesan Quiche
-Spinach and strawberry Salad with Balsamic Vinegrette
-Dessert: Dark Chocolate Bread with Strawberries and Vanilla Bean Greek Yogurt

-Granola of some kind, haven't had it in a while!
-I'm sure there is something else I'm apt be bake, just didn't pick anything else out!

-Roasted Chicken, Steamed broccoli(OR Zucchini Parmesan Noodles)
-CHicken Cordon Bleu Casserole, zucchini
-Restaurant Style Beef Soft Tacos with homemade flatbread, corn, avocado
-Beer Battered Pizza

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Creamy Italian Chicken and Orzo Skillet

I had gotten some really good deals on the new Philadelphia Cooking Creme Cream Cheese. Then I had to figure out WHAT to make with it. The first recipe I tried, I wasn't all that impressed. I then tried this one and it was DELICIOUS!

Creamy Italian Chicken and Orzo Skillet-shared from Kraft
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
1 pkg Italian Cheese and Herb Cooking creme
1-2 zucchini, sliced
1-2 tomatoes, diced(or 1 14 oz can petite diced tomatoes, drained)
2 cups cooked orzo

Place zucchini in skillet and cook for about 6-8 mins until fork tender. Add in chicken and allow to heat through. Add in cooking cream, tomatoes, and orzo. Cook until hot.

**I really liked how fast this came together especially since I already had the zucchini and chicken cooked! It was a delicious summer meal.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Minestrone Casserole

I LOVE minestrone soup, but it isn't really soup season...although soup would be good at anytime. But I saw this on $5 dinners last week and thought it was perfect! I did alter it a bit, because I was missing some of the ingredients, but you can put anything you like it in as far as veggies go and also came together fast!

Minestrone Casserole-adapted from $5 Dinners
3 Italian Sausage links, casing removed
2 cups beans(I used small white beans)
1-2 cups sliced zucchini(mine was pre-cooked)
1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 tbsp italian seasoning
2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 lb egg noodles, cooked(or pasta of your choice)
10 oz box chopped frozen spinach, thawed and drained well(omitted)

Cook and crumble sausage until browned. Add in garlic and saute for 5 mins. Add in zucchini and cook until tender. Stir in beans, italian seasoning, and tomatoes. Cook until heated through. Stir in noodles. Serve with parmesan cheese.

I didn't bake it into a casserole. If you wanted to do that place the noodle mixture into a pan and top with cheese bake at 350 degrees for 20 mins until cheese is melted.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Tasty Tuesday-5/3

Crockpot Chocolate Lava Cake-Life as a Lofthouse
Mango Colada Muffins-How Sweet It Is
Ultimate Chicken Sandwiches-Delightful Country Cooking
Fiesta Lime Rice-Gina's Skinny Recipes
Curried Sweet Potato Chickpea Burgers-The Sweets LIfe

Monday, May 2, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

This week I was able to plan everything with what I had on hand! I only need to grab some fresh produce, milk, and eggs which are staples here!

-Gingerbread Pancakes
-Chocolate Chip Banana Pancakes with Peanut Butter Syrup
-Chocolate Swirl Banana Bread

-Italian Chicken and Orzo Skillet
-Minestrone Casserole
-Chicken Tikka Masala(leftovers from the freezer)
-Grilled Kielbasa, veggies

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Coconut Chicken and Coconut Curry Sweet Potato Fries

I love anything coconut and then add in curry and I'm REALLY there! I saw these and knew I had everything on hand to make them. I was looking forward to this meal ALL week and it did NOT disappoint!

There is a recipe for the Pineapple Curry Dipping sauce also found in the link, but I decided to leave it out as I didn't think it was needed!

Coconut Chicken -shared from Cooking During Stolen Moments
1 lb chicken, cut into fingers or bite size
1/2 cup flour
salt, pepper, curry powder to taste
2 eggs
2 tsp water
1 cup panko crumbs
1/2 cup coconut

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Mix together flour and spices, place on a plate. Beat together eggs and water in a shallow plate or bowl. Mix together coconut and panko and place that into a shallow bowl. Dredge chicken in flour, followed by the egg mixture, and finally the coconut mixture. Press this onto the chicken if needed. Place on greased cookie sheet. Bake for 15-20 mins until golden brown and cooked through!

**These were delicious! I love the crispy panko with the sweet coconut! I'm not usually a fan of making breaded chicken and I was thinking that as I had 2 kids running around my feet and I was covered in goo, luckily these were very much worth it!

Coconut Curry Sweet Potato Fries
I know I saw this recipe on someone's blog, but I can't remember which one. I did actually combine 2 different recipes I wanted to try.

2-3 sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into fries
2 tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp curry powder

Melt coconut oil. Stir in curry. Coat potatoes with mixture and lay on baking sheet. Cook at 400 degrees for about 20 mins. Potatoes should be soft when poked with a fork and crispy on one side.

**These were pretty delicious, but I do think they were missing something. I think next time I'll add just a little salt to the coconut/curry mixture. The coconut flavor was very subtle.