Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Pulled BBQ Chicken Sandwich



Well, we weathered the storm! It was super windy, but the power held out all day and night on Monday. Tuesday we woke up to quite a mess outside of leaves and branches everywhere, but aside from that it was a beautiful day...partly sunny, around 65 degrees...not bad!

It was so nice in fact that, after blowing away all the leaves and debris from my driveway and decks, I decided to do my weekly grocery shopping. Well, of course that was when the power decided to go out. Yesterday at 4 pm...with a fridge and freezer full of food. 

I still have no idea why it went out so long after the storm was over. I'm pissed cause I had prepared so well. Jesse and I had eaten pretty much everything in the fridge and freezer, and I had the heat cranked up just in case power went out. *Sigh*...what are ya gonna do?

I was hoping it would be temporary, that maybe they cut power to us on purpose before restoring it to a whole bunch of people. That was not the case. It's still out as of today. Luckily my mother has a generator, so I was able to transfer most of my food over to her fridge and freezer.

So today Jesse and I are parked at the Gales Ferry Library charging all of our devices...phone, laptop and iPads. It could always be worse though. I can't believe the devastation Sandy wreaked on New York and the extreme coasts of CT and NJ. We may not have power, but at least we have a (semi) warm house and all of our friends and family are safe.

Ok guys, that's it for me today. I'll see again when I can.

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'Pulled BBQ Chicken Sandwich'
Source: Paula Deen

Ingredients

2 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
2 tablespoons canola oil 
1 onion, finely chopped 
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped 
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 
1 cup ketchup 
1/2 cup water 
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
salt and pepper 
hamburger rolls 
Coleslaw (optional)

Directions

1. Season the chicken thighs on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large high-sided skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken thighs and sear until golden brown, about 4 minutes on each side. Remove to a plate.

2. Add onion and garlic and sauté until tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in apple cider vinegar; using a wooden spoon stir up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Add ketchup, water, brown sugar, Worcestershire, cayenne, and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer.

3. Add the chicken back to the pan as well as any juices that have accumulated on the plate. Turn heat to low, cover and cook for 40 minutes.

4. Once chicken is cooked, shred the meat with a fork in the skillet. Toss the meat through the sauce so it’s covered. Divide the pulled meat between 6 hamburger buns. Serve with coleslaw, if desired.



Monday, October 29, 2012

Shrimp-and-Crab Nachos



Well, we're pretty much just sitting here waiting for Miss Sandy to grace us with her presence. I'd really like to get this over with. I'm sick of all the 'Sandy Doom and Gloom' on TV.

We're all prepared and ready to go here. Tons of water (thank you Heath for picking up those 7 jugs for the water cooler before you left), and plenty of non-perishable food and batteries and flash lights and whatnot. My sister was evacuated from Mystic, so she's here with her two kitties for the next couple days, which is nice. Jesse and I are liking the company...even if one of her cats is the devil reincarnated. I have a feeling that we're all gonna end up at my Mom's though since they have a generator ;)

So, after seeing these nachos pinned to within an inch of their lives on Pinterest, I decided it was time to give them a try. I made them on a Friday so my Mom and sister could help me eat them, but at the last minute my mother changed her mind and had the KFC that my step-dad had brought home. 

It was a decision she would quickly regret. 

Partially because these nachos were awesome and Chelsea and I loved them, but mainly because it's KFC...you're pretty much guaranteed to feel like crap after eating their chicken.

Ok guys, have a great rest of your day! I've got a few odds and ends to finish up before we probably lose power. To anyone in my neck of the woods...stay safe!

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'Shrimp-and-Crab Nachos'
Source: My Recipes

Ingredients

1 teaspoon olive oil
1 pound peeled and deveined shrimp
2 to 3 teaspoons toasted ground cumin
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, cleaned and picked
3/4 cup sour cream
1 bunch green onions, sliced
1 bag tortilla chips (9 oz)
3 cups grated pepper Jack cheese
1/2 cup sliced pickled jalapeño

Directions

1. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add shrimp, cumin, and garlic; sauté 3 minutes or until shrimp are pink.

2. Combine cooked shrimp, crab, sour cream, and green onions in a large bowl.

3. Spread tortilla chips on a greased foil-lined baking sheet. Top with shrimp mixture. Sprinkle with cheese, and top with jalapeño.

4. Broil 5 to 6 inches from heat 2 minutes or until cheese melts. Serve immediately.



Friday, October 26, 2012

Chocolate Covered Frozen Bananas



Well, I didn't intend for this to be a Halloween recipe, but I had some Halloween sprinkles in my cabinet left over from last year and figured this would be a good use for them.

These are so simple, and take no time at all to prepare. The hardest part is waiting for the bananas to freeze, which should take only a couple hours, but you could do it the night before if you want. I actually forgot about mine, so they were in the freezer for about 24 hours before I opened it and was like
"What the hell? Why are there frozen bananas on a stick in my freezer? Ohhhhhhhh....." (I have a terrible memory. Ever see the movie 'Memento'? I'm almost there).

Anyway, as I noted at the bottom of this recipe, once you cover the bananas in chocolate, you're supposed to put them back in the freezer to let everything harden. I didn't do that. Jesse and I wanted to eat our bananas right away, so I set them in fridge for about 20. The chocolate still hardens, but the banana starts to thaw a bit and isn't rock hard, making it much easier for little ones (a least mine) to eat. I too preferred the slightly softer banana. It's still SUPER cold in the middle, but it's not gonna break a tooth.

Ok guys, have a great weekend! Heath has gone out to sea for awhile, so of course that's when a stupid hurricane decides to stop by. I've got a few things to do outside in case the wind really starts whipping come Monday or Tuesday. It's looking like it's headed to New Jersey (sorry guys), but you never know. Better to be safe than sorry!

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'Chocolate Covered Frozen Bananas'
Source: Adapted from Baked Bree

Ingredients

Bananas
1 bag milk or semisweet chocolate chips
3 Tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
Wood corn dog sticks
Sprinkles

Directions

1. Peel desired number of bananas and insert stick about 1 inch above the very bottom of the banana, so the stick can go straight into as much of the banana as possible. (It's ok if they start to break a bit...freezing them will stop further breakage).

2. Put the bananas on a plate and set in the freezer, letting them freeze completely...at least 2 hours.

3. Once completely frozen, melt the chocolate chips in the microwave according to package directions. Add the vegetable oil and mix completely (this helps thin the chocolate making it easier to work with).

4. Using a spoon, cover the bananas in chocolate. Work quickly as the cold banana will start to harden the warm chocolate almost immediately! Cover with sprinkles and put them back in the freezer to set completely. 

***Since we ate ours immediately, I placed mine in the fridge for about 20 minutes after covering them with chocolate. The chocolate still hardens, but the banana starts to thaw a bit. I didn't want Jesse biting into a rock hard banana***



Thursday, October 25, 2012

Raspberry Walnut Chicken Salad



Ok, apparently this recipe (as I found it, not as I posted it...click the source link for the original), is a knock off of Applebee's Oriental Chicken Salad. Well, I've never had that particular item at Applebee's, but people seem to love it.

Me? Not usually a salad kinda gal, but I saw this on Pinterest and it looked good. I also have some Tyson Breaded Chicken fillets in my freezer that I need to use up, so this was a perfect fit.

Now, I had zero desire to make my own oriental dressing, It's not hard, and if you click the link below to Mandy's Recipe Box, then you can get the recipe, but as many of you know, I like to take an easy thing, and make it even easier. Ultimate laziness at it's finest people!

My plan was to just buy a bottle of pre-made oriental dressing. Yeeeah...good luck with that. I couldn't find any at the NEX. What I DID find though was some Raspberry Walnut vinaigrette dressing...YUM-O!

Of course this may not be up your alley, so feel free to use whatever dressing you like (or make the oriental one for you non-lazy, go-getters).

Overall though, I really liked this salad. A lot. I love that it used up chicken fillets I already had, I love that the bagged salad makes this simple to throw together, and I love that the Chinese noodles take all of 3 minutes to cook. A very tasty lunch indeed!

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'Raspberry Walnut Chicken Salad'
Source: Adapted from Mandy's Recipe Box

Ingredients

2 pieces of frozen chicken strips (I used Tyson)
Bagged salad with romaine lettuce, carrots, and cabbage
1 tablespoon chopped walnuts
1/4 cup cooked Chow Mein noodles
Raspberry Walnut vinaigrette dressing

Directions

1. Bake the chicken strips according to the package directions. Remove and cool. Cook noodles according to package directions.

2. Tear chicken into small chunks. Place desired amount of bagged salad onto a plate. Top with chicken, walnuts and noodles. Drizzle dressing over top.



Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Turkey Goulash



This recipe is brought to you by my sister Chelsea. A few Fridays ago when she and my mother came over for dinner, this was the recipe she requested that I make. Not gonna lie, I was less than thrilled. Goulash? Ehhh. The only thing I liked about this recipe before actually trying it, was telling everyone that we would be having goulash for dinner in my best Arnold Schwarzenegger voice. Go ahead...try it. It's fun!

Anyway...This. Was. AWESOME!

I have never had a dish that had such an explosion of flavors. Seriously, that's the best way to describe it...an explosion. My mother, who normally eats about as much a my 4 year old and proclaimed loudly for all to hear just how much she hates the spice cumin, wolfed down two bowls!

I absolutely recommend trying this. My sister doesn't eat beef, so the ground turkey was a must for us, but you can always make it with ground beef if that's what you prefer. This dinner has so much flavor to it, and I imagine it's one of those dishes that tastes even better the next day (I wouldn't know since I sent Chelsea home with a crap-ton of leftovers, and Heath ate the rest).

Ok guys, have a wonderful Wednesday! See ya tomorrow!

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'Turkey Goulash'
Source: Bev Cooks

Ingredients

3/4 pound elbow macaroni
1 pound ground turkey
1/2 white onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoons cumin
1 tablespoons smoked paprika
1 pinch freshly grated nutmeg
2 sprigs fresh oregano, leaves stripped from the stems
1 can crushed tomatoes (14.5 oz)
3 tablespoons sour cream
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 teaspoons caraway seeds

Directions

1. Bring a large skillet to a medium-high heat. Add the ground turkey and cook until browned, about 6 minutes.

2. Add the onion and toss to combine. Add the garlic, cumin, paprika, nutmeg and oregano. Saute another minute. Add the crushed tomatoes and stir to combine. Add the sour cream and continue to stir. Add salt and pepper to taste.

3. Meanwhile cook the pasta according to package. Drain and toss in the oil, most of the parsley, and the caraway seeds.

3. Add pasta to turkey mixture and toss to combine. Garnish with parsley.



Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Roasted Blueberry Ricotta Crostini



Good morning! Well, today I turn 32. Thirty...Two. W...T...F.

I hate getting old.

Now, I don't mind the ageing process...little wrinkles starting appear around the eyes, a gray hair here and there (though thankfully being blond, I can't see them), your hands starting to take on a more 'weathered' look...that's fine. I can deal with that.

It's the mind. I don't feel like I think like a 32 year old. I can clearly remember my mother at 32 (I was 12). I just don't feel like how I remember her being then...all 'Mom-ish' and old (sorry Mom). Am I making any sense? Probably not.

Oh well. It goes both ways actually. Sometimes I still have the mind of a teenager (usually whenever I'm clothes shopping or driving), while other times I feel like a 90 year old woman trapped in this body, sitting down at night in front of my 'stories' (seriously, 'Once Upon a Time = Best show EVER), crocheting my mother a new afghan for her bed. SMH.....strange.

Anyway! This is a recipe I made for lunch one afternoon. I was gonna make it on a Friday so my Mom and sister could share it with me, but they weren't interested. Their loss! I loved it. It was very similar to this recipe, which I made awhile back. Roasted berries are awesome, and I highly recommend trying them.

This would make a great appetizer, and you could always pair it with the roasted grape recipe for more options.

Ok guys, have a wonderful day! I'm off to meet my best bud for some lunch and a little shopping during her lunch break, then I don't know, maybe some laundry and vacuuming? I'll just have to wait and see where this crazy birthday leads too  ;)

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'Roasted Blueberry Ricotta Crostini'

Ingredients

2 cups fresh blueberries
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
1 tablespoon honey
1 cup ricotta cheese
Zest of 1 large lemon
1 French baguette, thinly sliced and toasted
Additional honey, for drizzling

Directions

1. Heat oven to 400. Place blueberries on a large baking sheet. Pour two tablespoons of fresh lemon juice and drizzle 1 tablespoon honey over blueberries. Gently toss the berries to coat.

2. Roast for 7-10 minutes or until blueberries are soft and almost ready to pop. You want to take them out of the oven before they pop. Set aside and allow to cool to room temperature.

3. In a small bowl, combine ricotta cheese, the remaining 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, and lemon zest. Spread the baguette slices with the ricotta cheese mixture. Spoon roasted blueberries on top of the cheese. Drizzle each baguette slice with honey and serve.



Monday, October 22, 2012

Roasted Lemon Garlic & Herb Shrimp Pasta



When I was making this recipe, I thought 'Eh...shrimp and pasta. Whatever'. Turned out to be really, really good. Definitely a surprise. Even Heath loved it, and he ate it cold 3 hours after it was finished!

The shrimp was so simple to prepare, and you don't have to serve it over pasta, you could eat it just by itself if you like, or throw it over some rice or couscous. You could even top a steak with it if you want! I just wanted a filling dinner, so that's why I opted for the pasta.

Ok guys, have a great Monday! I'm getting a new garage door as I type, so my week is already off to a good start! Plus my Mom and Step-Dad are taking a little mini-vacation and they're leaving their idiot dog Ziggy-Bear here for the week. 

I love Ziggy-Bear with all my heart. Stupid as the day is long, but he's just so friggin cute (he's a Pomeranian...a very short, fat, cross-eyed Pomeranian). 

They're never gonna get him back ;)

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'Roasted Lemon Garlic & Herb Shrimp Pasta'
Source: Adapted from Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice

Ingredients

1/3 cup olive oil
1 lemon, zested then half cut into thin slices and the other half into wedges
3-4 fresh thyme sprigs, leaves removed
salt and pepper
thin spaghetti
2 tablespoons butter
1 pound fresh shrimp, medium-sized, deveined with tails off
5 cloves garlic, minced

Directions

1. Heat oven to 400. In a greased 8x8 glass baking dish combine olive oil, lemon zest and thyme. Season with salt and pepper.

2. Bake for 10-12 minutes, checking every few minutes. If it looks like it is getting too brown remove and proceed to next step.

3. Meanwhile cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and toss with a pat of butter or olive oil.

4. Remove pan from oven, add butter and move it around a little to melt. Add shrimp, garlic and the thin sliced lemons (don't squeeze them). Toss to coat with oil mixture.

5. Bake for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until shrimp turn pink. Serve over pasta and garnish with lemon wedges.



Friday, October 19, 2012

Halloween Week ~ Broom Sticks



I'm kind of sad that this is the end of Halloween Week. I really liked doing these recipes! I may have to spill over into next week a bit since I have a few more Halloween-y recipes left to try.

These little broom sticks were just too cute to pass up. Of course, mine don't look near as good as the source photo, but you get the idea.

Jesse loved them. He came down from his playroom, grabbed one and ran off. 3 minutes later he came back down and said "Mama, I'm just gonna take this whole plate to my room, ok? Thanks." And they were gone. He ate all 4. Of course he wanted no part of dinner an hour later, but whatever.

Ok guys, have a great weekend! We've got nothing going on (at least I don't think we do), so it should be nice and relaxing. SHOULD be...we shall see ;)

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'Broom Sticks'
Source: Adapted from Be Different Act Normal

Ingredients

3 sticks of string cheese
6 pretzel sticks
Fresh chives

Directions

1. Using kitchen scissors, cut the ends off each string cheese stick (about 2 inches long).

2. Cut one end of the cheese into strips, being careful not to cut all the way to the top. Fan out cheese strips as best you can.

3. Take one side of the scissors and gently stick it into the uncut side of the cheese, to make a little hole for the pretzel. Slowly twist the pretzel stick into the hole, careful not to tear the cheese.

4. Tie a string of fresh chives around the top of each cheese piece. Enjoy!



Thursday, October 18, 2012

Halloween Week ~ Spider Deviled Eggs



So, I realize I just posted a Deviled Egg recipe 9 days ago, but this recipe was too cute not to try. Plus I got to eat some more of those fan-tab-u-lous Horseradish eggs, so I really didn't mind ;)

Word of advice here...I bought a can of large black olives. I believe they were just a wee bit too big. The spiders were supposed to have 8 legs...4 on each side...but that was just 'spider-leg overload', so I gave my creepy crawlers only 6 legs. They'll get over it.

If you use the medium olives, I think it'll be much easier decorate, and the olives won't be so overpowering. Or small...I've never seen small black olives, but if they make them, use those.

Ok guys, I'm off to do fun housewife stuff until 1 pm when I have a massage appointment! Let me tell you, after hiking all over Gillette Castle with Jesse yesterday, this Mama needs a massage! Plus she's right down the road, and it's always good to support local businesses (at least that's how I sell it to the hubby ;)

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'Spider Deviled Eggs'
Source: Better Recipes

Ingredients

12 deviled eggs (6 eggs)
(try THIS recipe, or prepare however you prefer)
1 can whole black olives

Directions

1. Prepare deviled eggs according to whatever recipe you choose to use.

2. Slice 6 olives in half and lay one half on top of each egg to be the body of the spider.

3. Slice 12 olives in half, then slice each half into 3-4 equal slices. Fan out on each side of the 'body' to make the legs.



Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Halloween Week ~ Chocolate Witch Hats



How cute are these?? And simple!

I like simple.

That plate you see above? Empty about 5 minutes after these pics were taken. Who doesn't love fudge striped cookies? Then when you top them with a Hershey's kiss and some frosting...even better!  ;)

Ok guys...have a great day! I'm taking the boy up to East Haddam to see Gillette Castle. The interior of the castle closed on Columbus Day, but it's cool. There's plenty to see from the outside, and it's a beautiful (though slightly chilly) day, so might as well get out of the house!

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'Chocolate Witch Hats'
Source: Barbs Chram

Ingredients

1 package Fudge stripe cookies
Hershey Kisses
1 tube orange icing

Directions

1. Turn cookies upside down so chocolate side is showing.

2. Place a Hershey's kiss over each cookie hole and squeeze orange icing around the base to secure to the cookie.

3. Enjoy!




Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Halloween Week ~ Mummy Dogs



Here's a Halloween recipe that I'm sure everyone and their brother have seen. It's so easy and so cute, and kids (well, mine at least) just love them. I do too. I won't lie...I ate three.

Actually, this is an excellent recipe to have the little ones make themselves! Just cut the crescents into strips for them, and they can wrap those dogs till their little hearts content!

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'Mummy Dogs'
Source: Pillsbury

Ingredients

1 can crescent rolls
2 1/2 slices American cheese, quartered
10 hot dogs
Cooking spray
Mustard or ketchup, if desired

Directions

1. Heat oven to 375. Unroll dough and separate at perforations, creating 4 rectangles. Press perforations to seal.

2. With a knife, cut each rectangle lengthwise into 10 pieces, making a total of 40 pieces of dough. Slice cheese slices into quarters.

3. Wrap 4 pieces of dough around each hot dog and 1/4 slice of cheese to look like "bandages," stretching dough slightly to completely cover hot dog. About 1/2 inch from one end of each hot dog, separate "bandages" so hot dog shows through for a "face". Place dogs on a foil lined baking sheet coated with cooking spray.

4. Bake 13 to 17 minutes or until dough is light golden brown and hot dogs are hot. Dot two little eyes using mustard.




Monday, October 15, 2012

Halloween Week ~ 'Candy Corn' Fruit Cups



Good morning! Hope you all had a nice, relaxing weekend. Mine was a bit...crowded. I went to the NYC Comic Con with my sister and bro-in-law on Saturday and Holy. Crap. I have never seen so many people in my whole life (and I've been at the Magic Kingdom on Christmas Day!). You could barely breath let alone move. Everyone was just herded from place to place...really took the fun out of it :(

On a side note though, I don't despise NYC anymore! I used to hate the city. The last time I was there before this past Saturday was back in 1998 when I was 18. Went to dinner and to see 'Cats' (awesome show...shame it's gone).

Maybe now that I'm older I'm just not intimidated by it anymore. And I'm sure spending two years living in D.C. helped too. I can't wait to take Jesse down there to see everything! We're gonna take him to see the Rockefeller tree and ice rink, and I've been wanting to see the Radio City Rockettes my whole life, so we'll do that too. And a Broadway show. I'm thinking 'A Christmas Story'......lots of plans :)

Anyway! To kick off my Halloween Week, I'm sharing a cute little (Healthy!!) recipe that I came across last week. It's super simple to prepare and just adorable. You can of course make smaller cups if you want to serve this at a party among other treats, or keep the larger cups for the perfect after-school snack. The way I made them, each cup held half a can of the pineapples and oranges, so none went to waste.

Ok guys, have a great week! I'll meet you back here tomorrow with another Halloween treat!

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'Candy Corn' Fruit Cups'

Ingredients

1 can pineapple chunks, drained (20 oz)
1 can mandarin oranges, drained (15 oz)
1 can whipped cream

Directions

1. Layer in small cups the pineapple first, followed by the oranges, then the whipped cream.

2. Enjoy!



Friday, October 12, 2012

Herbs de Provence Grilled Cheese



Well, I learned a handy little trick with this sandwich, I will, from now until the day I die, be making all my grilled cheese sandwiches with herbed butter. Who knew that adding a little herbs de provence to some butter would be so friggin good?!

This was a wonderful lunch, and so easy to prepare. Plus I like the baking method since it allows you to make as many or as few sandwiches as you want. I definitely recommend giving this a try.

Also...one more thing. A bit off the topic of food, but still something just as important to me. I wanted to take a sec and recommend an awesome new Indie Author, Matthew Mather. He's the author of the amazingly creative 'Atopia' series...


and it happens to be only .99 cents at Amazon  right now. I've been reviewing books on Amazon regularly for the past 9 years now (I WILL be reviewer #1 someday, I swear it!), and I've always been an avid reader. There will never be a time when you ask me "What are you reading right now?" and I say "Nothing"...doesn't happen. 

So when I recommend something, such as this series, it's not because anyone asked me to (though I do have a soft spot for indie writers since they put their whole heart into their stories. They're not just knocking back another book with the same 'ol tired formula for some big publishing house), but it's because I truly love the story. I read all 6 books in this series (but paid for them individually, so this is a great deal), and it blew me away.

Just a note though, it is a dystopian/apocalyptic story, so if you normally read 'bodice rippers' or feel-good family fiction, this may not be up your alley ;)

Ok guys, have a wonderful weekend! I will be heading down to NYC tomorrow with my sister and bro-in-law for Comic Con and I am super excited about it!! I wanted to dress up as Princess Leia (who will be there signing along with The Emperor!!!!), and Padme Amidala, but she said no ;)~

Plus next week I'll be doing all Halloween recipes, so I'm looking forward to that too. Alrighty, that's it for me today...see ya Monday!!

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'Herbs de Provence Grilled Cheese'

Ingredients

2 slices of lite boule or some white bread
1/2 cup of shredded fontina
1 giant beefsteak tomato slice
1 tbsp of herbed butter
(combine 1 tbsp salted butter with 1/2 tsp herbs de provence)

Directions

1. Heat oven to 450. Butter one side of each bread slice with the herbed butter. 

2. Place each bread slice butter side down onto a baking sheet. Sprinkle it with shredded fontina cheese.

3. Top the cheese with a thick slice of tomato; lightly salt if desired. Bake for 6-7 minutes.

4. Remove from oven and place one slice of bread o top f the other to finish the sandwich. Allow 3-4 minutes to cool (the tomato stays REALLY hot). 



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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Enchilada Pasta Casserole



This recipe was a bit of a surprise. I made it because it had 'Enchilada' in the title and Heath loves anything even remotely Mexican, but looking at the ingredients I wasn't expecting much. It turned out to be really, really good!

It makes quite a bit, so I ended up giving my Mom a huge portion to take home, and both she and my Step-Dad really liked it.

The funny thing though is that Heath, the one I made it for and expected to love it, didn't. He ate it (he'll eat anything, so that's not saying much), but he said it was just 'Eh'. Whatever. Don't listen to him.

Ok guys, have a great rest of your day! I'm off to live the exciting life of a housewife...laundry, vacuuming, dusting. Gee...they're all so much fun I just don't know where to start! ;)~

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'Enchilada Pasta Casserole'
Source: Table for Two

Ingredients

1 pound ground beef
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
5 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup light sour cream
1 can red enchilada sauce (10 oz)
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1 cup shredded monterey jack cheese, divided
1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
1 can diced green chiles (4 oz)
12 oz egg noodles
Salt & pepper, to taste

Directions

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.

2. In a large pot, bring water to boil and cook egg noodles according to package instructions. Drain

3. In the meantime, in a very large skillet, brown the ground beef. Drain. Add the chili powder, cumin, and cayenne pepper. Stir to combine. Add the cream cheese until melted and combined.

4. In a large bowl, combine sour cream, enchilada sauce, half the cheddar cheese, half the monterey jack cheese, corn kernels, and diced green chiles. Stir to combine. Pour mixture over the beef and let simmer for 2-3 minutes.

5. Add the pasta to the beef mixture and stir to combine. Pour beef everything into a large greased casserole dish and top with the remaining cheese.

6. Bake for 15 minutes or until cheese has completely melted. Serve hot.




Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Teriyaki Ranch Chicken


Looking for a super-duper simple tasty weeknight dinner? Here ya go. You're welcome ;)

This was so easy I kind of wish I had saved it for a night when I was either in a rush, or didn't feel like cooking. Of course I didn't realize it was so easy since I had never made it before. It was really good though, we all liked it (of course it's smothered in ranch dressing, cheese and bacon, so how can you not love it??).

Ok guys, sorry to post and dash, but I've got a doc appointment followed by Halloween costume shopping with the boy. And lunch somewhere in there. Since my doctors office happens to be right next to Captain Scott's Lobster Dock, it's not very difficult to figure out where we'll be eating. I think I have the only little boy in the world though who goes to an award winning lobster joint, and orders a cheeseburger ;)~

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'Teriyaki Ranch Chicken'
Source: Adapted from Beyond Kimchee

Ingredients

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
3 tablespoons real bacon pieces
4 tablespoon teriyaki sauce
1/2 cup ranch salad dressing
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 green onions, chopped
1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Directions

1. Heat oven to 350. Saute chicken breasts in vegetable oil until golden brown.

2. Transfer the chicken to a greased baking dish. Pour Teriyaki sauce and ranch dressing over the chicken. Sprinkle cheddar cheese, bacon pieces and 1/2 of green onion on top of chicken.

3. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

4. Sprinkle remaining green onions over the chicken to garnish.



Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Horseradish Deviled Eggs



In the words of The Big Bang Theory's Penny...'Holy crap on a cracker!'. That's what I was thinking when I ate my first one. They were so good. So, so, so, so good.

In all seriousness, this is how I will be making my deviled eggs from now on. They were amazing. On Friday's my Mom and sister usually come over for dinner. I was making Turkey Goulash for my sister (I'll post it in the near future...both recipes came from the same blog), but I made these as an appetizer. They were gone in a matter of minutes. I think my Mom wolfed down 3 before she even set down her purse.

I made only a couple small changes to the original recipe, which you can see by clicking the link under the recipe title below. The original used Greek yogurt  which I despise, so I switched that to sour cream. Also she used pickle juice, but I changed it to relish. I've always added relish to my deviled eggs because I like the sweetness it adds, so I did the same with these.

I will definitely be making these again. Holidays, get-together's, random Tuesday's...whatever. I actually have a Halloween spider deviled egg recipe coming up (next week I'm doing 'Halloween Week'...can't wait), and I'm using this recipe as the base for it.

Chelsea, thank you so much for the Turkey Goulash recipe, because it led me to this and a ton of other yummy recipes from her blog (Bev Cooks)! Can't wait to try some of her other stuff!

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'Horseradish Deviled Eggs'
Source: Bev Cooks

Ingredients

8 large eggs, hard boiled
2 Tablespoons sour cream
4 teaspoons cream horseradish
3 teaspoons sweet relish
1 teaspoons Dijon mustard
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper
2 teaspoons fresh dill

Directions

1. Peel and slice hard boiled eggs in half.

2. Carefully squeeze the yolks into a small food processor. Add the sour cream, horseradish, relish, mustard, dill, and the salt and pepper. Chop until creamy.

3. Transfer the mixture to a small zip-lock bag. Cut a tiny hole in the corner, and squeeze the filling into each egg half.

4. Garnish with fresh dill.



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