Thursday, April 5, 2012

Italian Style Meatballs

These are a delicious way to make a basic meatball for Spaghetti and Meatballs. I use these with the same sauce I make for Chicken Italiano, recipe follows. I also included a variation for a simple sage meatball that I use for Dilled Meatball Stroganoff.Serves 4.Easy to double.

1/2 lb. ground beef
3 T diced onion
1/4 t. garlic powder
1 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
1 t. worchestershire sauce
3 T parsley
1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
1 egg
1 slice fresh bread crumbled in the blender/food processor

Mix all these together with you hands in a bowl. Cover a cookie sheet with foil for easy clean-up, and roll into small/medium meatballs. Sprinkle with additional salt and pepper on top. Bake at 425 for 20 minutes, or till golden brown and cooked through. I add them to the sauce to simmer and add flavor to that while the pasta cooks.

*for sage meatballs add 1 t. ground sage instead of the garlic powder and omit the cheese. This adds a very yummy flavor, but not for italian-style.

Marinara Sauce:
  I will try to start this 2 hours before I plan to eat dinner. The longer it simmers the better it gets. olive oil
1/4 cup chopped onion, or how much you like. (i keep chopped onion in my freezer since I rarely use a whole onion at a time)
2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
2 cans tomato sauce
1 can tomato paste plus one can water
1 can diced tomatoes(if your family doesn't like chunky sauce, don't add)
2 T sugar
1 t. italian seasoning
salt and pepper
pinch of red pepper flakes. (just a tiny bit, its surprising how little it takes to add a little kick)

Cook onion in oil in medium sauce-pan with a lid. Cook till starts to get soft. Add garlic and cook together till it just starts to turn brown. Add the tomatoes and seasoning. Don't taste right away, it takes awhile for the flavors to come through. Turn to low so its at a low simmer, and cover. Taste an hour later and add more seasonings or sugar, till it tastes right. Continue simmering till ready to use. (sometimes it gets too thick after simmering for so long, so I'll just add water till its the right consistency.)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Homemade English Muffins

These turned out great! I was wondering if they were going to turn out, and they didn't look like english muffins till I cooked them, then they puffed right up! I used 2/3 whole wheat flour and they were yummy! Easy and good.

2 pkgs. yeast (2 1/4 t. per package)
2 c. warm water
5-6 cups flour
1 T. sugar
3 t. salt
1/2 c. shortening

Dissolve yeast in warm water (unless instant) Add 3 c. flour, sugar, salt, shortening, stirring till moistened. Gradually add 2-3 c. flour to form a stiff dough. On floured surface gently knead 5-6 times till no longer sticky. Roll dough 1/4" thick. Cut with a 4" round cutter. Sprinkle cornmeal on cookie sheets. Place circles on. Top w/additional cornmeal. Let rise 45 mintutes, covered with saran wrap and a towel.
Heat griddle to 350 degrees. With a wide spatula invert onto ungreases griddle. Cook 5-6 minutes on each side.
They will puff up as they cook.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Ravioli With Vegetables

This is one of those recipes mom used to make while I was in my teen years. This is super light, refreshing, and healthy! I use cheese ravioli, the frozen kind works great. The fresh green beans really make the dish. Frozen work as well. You want them to have a bit of a crunch.

1 pkg. ravioli with cheese, prepared, not rinsed. (i use a slotted spoon and place them directly into the veggie pan)
2 T olive oil
1/2 lb. fresh green beans
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
1 yellow squash, quartered and sliced
1/2 c. grape tomatoes, sliced
1 T. Chopped, fresh garlic
1/2 c. grated parmesan cheese

Heat oil on med/high heat. Add beans and seasonings. Cook, stirring frequently 5 mintutes. Add squash, cook 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and garlic, cook 2 minutes. Toss in pasta, sprinkle with cheese.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Chocolate Banana Bran Muffins

Ever wonder where I got my love of cooking? My mom is amazing in the kitchen. She rarely uses a recipe, and can whip up creative, yummy meals so fast. I was forever following her around as a kid, sitting on the counter as she cooked. Anyways, there is this recipe she used from this healthy bran cookbook, but she somehow came up with the brilliant idea of adding cocoa pwd. and chocolate chips to a banana date muffin. (leaving out the dates) I remember grabbing these to eat on the bus on the way to school. I loved them. I was craving them and had to bust out the recipe. (this cookbook has some other great recipes I need to add to this cookbook: brown sugar chocolate chip cookies w/tons of bran/w.w. flour, and these double chocolate cookies...we used to eat those for breakfast too without any guilt!)

Ok, here they are!

*you can find wheat/oat bran in the specialty section of most grocery stores. Winco and Broulims have them in the bulk foods section I know. I try to add it to recipes wherever I can, savory and sweet. Just add a little more liquid to the recipe.

These make 12 muffins with 1 Tablespoon of bran per muffin!!

1 cup bran
1 cup w.w. flour
1/3 c. cocoa powder
1/4 c. milk (add more if too dry)
1 1/3 c. mashed ripe bananas
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
2 eggs
4 T melted butter, or light olive oil
1 t. vanilla
chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Prepare muffin tin.
Mix all ingredients and blend well.
Bake 15-20 minutes, or till toothpick inserted comes clean.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Baked Southwest Egg Rolls

This is another recipe from Melskitchencafe, these are great. They're packed with vegetables, and are very satisfying. LOVE! makes 2-3 dozen small eggrolls.

1 T olive oil
1 med. yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 green or red bell pepper, diced small
1 jalepeno pepper, seeds removed, finely minced, or 4 pickled jalepeno rounds from the jar.
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
10 oz. frozen, chopped spinach, defrosted and liquid squeezed out (wringing through a kitchen towel)
1 c. frozen corn
1 t. cumin
1 t. chili pwd.
1/4 c. freshly chopped cilantro
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
2-3 c shredded cheese, cheddar, or monterey jack, or pepper jack
2-3 dozen small fajita size flour tortillas

Chipotle dipping sauce:
1 c. sour cream
1/4 c salsa
1 t. minced chipotle peppers in adobo sauce.

Preheat oven to 400. Line two rimmed baking sheets with foil, spray with pam.

Combine dipping sauce ingredients. Set in fridge till ready to serve.

In a large 12" skillet heat olive oil on med. heat. Add onions and cook 3-4 minutes till softened. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds. Add cubed chicken breast and peppers and cook until chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Add black beans, spinach, corn, cilantro, and seasonings. Mix well and cook till mixture is heated through. Add the cheese and stir well, cooking until the cheese is melted.

Warm tortillas and fill, roll up tightly. lay seam-side down on pan. Spray tops with pam, and bake 15 minutes, or till golden brown.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Honey Lime Enchiladas

6 T. honey
5 T. lime juice
1 T. chili pwd.
1/2 t. garlic pwd.
1 lb. chicken, cooked and shredded (3 small breasts)
8-10 flour tortillas
monterey jack cheese, shredded
16 oz. green enchilada sauce
1 c. heavy cream

Mix the 1st 5 ingredients and let it marinade all day. Pour 1/2 c. enchilada sauce in 9x13 pan. Fill tortillas with chicken and cheese. Place in pan. Mix remaining sauce with cream and leftover marinade. Pour on enchiladas. Sprinkle with cheese.

Bake 350 for 30 minutes or till brown and crispy on top.

Chicken Rice Broccoli Casserole

A yummy version of chicken and rice.

1 lb. chicken breast
8 oz. broccoli, cut up
1/2 c. uncooked rice
3 slices bread, torn into pieces
salt and pepper
3 T. butter, melted
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1/2 c. mayo
1/2 c. sour cream
1/4 t. curry pwd.
1 1/2 c shredded cheese

Cook the chicken in saucepan with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover and cook 20 min. Remove chicken. Reserve the stock. cut into bite-sized pieces. Set aside. Cook the rice, and add to chicken. Cook broccoli just till tender in boiling, salted water 2-4 minutes.
Pulse the bread into crumbs. Mix with butter.
In a saucepan, mix and heat soup, mayo, sour cream, and seasonings. Add up to 1 cup of stock, till the desired moistness. Stir together and spoon into 9X13 pan. Top with cheese and crumbs.

Bake 350 Degrees 45 minutes, or till bubbly.

Serve with hot rolls and salad