Thursday, January 26, 2012

Casserole Kung Fu!

I recently started attending Taekwondo classes with my son.  And since he is in elementary school until 3:30pm, we go to an evening class to learn our new martial art.  Consequently, getting a healthy home-made dinner in the oven and onto the table for my family is quite the challenge.

Good Morning Egg Casserole
To meet that challenge, I am on the hunt for delicious, easy recipes that fit in a casserole dish or crock-pot.  This good morning egg casserole fits that criteria and can easily be adapted for what I like to call "breakfast for dinner."  (My kids and husband love breakfast for dinner nights.)

Ground Beef Macaroni And Tomato Casserole
If you like tomatoes and macaroni, this no-fuss-no-muss hearty ground beef casserole will work great for a hungry troop.  Or make a double batch and freeze one to use as a back up for evenings when you just run out of time.

Hobo Dinner
Last, the reliable and desirable hobo dinner cannot be outdone when it comes to home-style cooking and traditional casserole meals.  It's adaptable, easy to put together, and very functional.  The great thing about hobo dinners is they can be spiced up with a few garden herbs, or kept a little more plain for a farm-house taste.

Enjoy your casserole kung-fu!  Remember, we love feedback and photos!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Cooking It Crockpot Style!

With the chilly weather and shorter days of Winter comes the need for something easy, warm, and hearty for dinner.  Enter the crock-pot/slow cooker.  Whatever name it goes by at your house, it should be a staple among your go-to kitchen gadgets and cook wear.  Why? may ask.

Crock-Pot Goulash
Using a crock-pot to cook with will simplify your life.  Yes, I realize they are big and bulky and older models are hard to clean.  But really, isn't that what children are for?  Whether you are a working woman on the go or stay at home mom, whether you have a houseful of hungry heads to feed or it's just you, using a crock-pot can save you time and money.

Crock-Pot Swiss Tenderloin
You can assemble your ingredients the night before, or first thing in the morning, load them into the crock-pot, turn it on, and go!  You don't have to worry that your food will get over done, under cooked, or cold.  The crock-pot works it's magic while you are off at the office, or home-schooling in the next room.

Crock-Pot Potato Soup
I used to avoid using a crock-pot because I had an older one and the actually "pot" was not removable.  So I had to stick the whole thing in the sink to wash it up.  Not fun.  Then, my mother-in-law took pity on me and bought me one for Christmas.  Ahhh.  It is a wonderful thing.

I have included some totally tasty crock-pot recipes that you might not have thought of.  Don't forget that you can freeze foods cooked in the crock-pot, if you happen to be cooking for one or two people.

Enjoy!  Remember, we love feedback and photos!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Fun With SODA!

I realize we are all trying to stick to our New Year's resolutions and for some this can be hard in the kitchen, especially when there are so many fun things to cook and try.  For example, I have compiled a few recipes that use some pretty sweet ingredients that I am pretty sure I am not supposed to even have in the house...

Coca Cola BBQ Chicken
If you like Coca Cola and BBQ, I just can't see how you could lose with this Chicken recipe?  What's not to love about chicken barbequed with Coca Cola?  Yes, I vowed to give up soda for New Year's but if it's used in a bbq sauce surely that doesn't count.

Crock Pot 7-Up Roast
I am willing to give this pot roast recipe a try for two reasons.  1. It's cooked in a crock pot.  Any recipe that can be cooked in a crock pot is on my favorite's list.  My crock pot is my friend.  2. It's made with 7-Up.  My boys love 7-Up.  Granted, they will probably freak out when I tell them I coated the roast beef in it, but still...if it gives the roast that lemon-lime zest I am game.

Dr. Pepper Baked Pork Loin
Last, but not least, and my personal favorite: Pork with Dr. Pepper baked into it.  Dr. Pepper happens to be my 2nd favorite soda on the planet.  (The first: RC cola, aka Royal Crown cola, but I digress.)  If I can get a pork loin to cook up yummy with Dr. Pepper, I am willing to for-go my New Year's Resolution of giving up soda.  How bad can it really be for you?  Don't answer that.

Anyhow...Enjoy!  Remember, we love feedback and photos!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Which Came First?

The Chicken...or the egg?  Or do we care?  No, not really, since they are both very nutritious and delicious and I believe we should all incorporate a little more chicken and eggs into our regular diet.  I am not a nutrition expert, however I do know both are easy to prepare, store, and make excellent leftovers!

Chicken & Dumplings

If there is one thing I absolutely love, but rarely eat, it's Chicken & Dumplings.  Not because there is a chicken and dumpling shortage mind you...but because I have never attempted to make homemade dumplings and the thought terrifies me.  What if I screw them up?  Clearly, I need to toughen up!

Chicken & Egg Scallop

Another interesting combination...should we incorporate both Chicken and eggs into one recipe?  I am not so sure...oh the controversy.  With the exception of fried rice and Mandarin chicken (which have both ingredients) I don't honestly know if it's a safe or sane idea...Thoughts?

Chicken Broccoli Noodles
Chicken and broccoli and noodles, oh my!?  Now there is a dish I can dig.  If only I could get my husband to eat it...Whatever your favorite chicken or egg entree might be, cook it with zest!  Enjoy the process, inhale the scent, add some garlic and see what happens.

Enjoy!  Remember, we love feedback and photos so do share!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Casseroles To Rock Your Winter Wonderland!

Casseroles are not just a throw back potluck staple from the 80's.  They are a fiscal way to feed your family and keep the 24 hours you have been granted budgeted too.  If you add some inventive ingredients and flavors to a tiny bit of prep and planning, you too can be the proud owner of a hot and easy meal ready to serve when you are.

Broccoli Rice Casserole
Did I mention casseroles are a friendly way to re-introduce vegetables to your family over the winter months.  Yes, fresh is best but if you or your grocer are short on attractive fresh vegetables, look to the frozen food section.

Chili Cheese Rice Casserole
And the casseroles freeze well too.  Make enough to fill two dishes.  Freeze one.  Bake one.  Easy-peasy rice and cheesy.  Now you have something delicious for dinner tonight and a few weeks from now, without too much extra work or thought.

English Beef Pot Pie
So, technically this last one is pot pie. looks a lot like a casserole to me, so I am including it as a less famous cousin to the casserole.  (This one is English from across the pond!)  Pot pies, too, are fairly easy to assemble, can be made in advance, frozen for a later date, and winter friendly!

Help yourself.  Save your money.  Build a casserole!

Remember, we love feedback and photos!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Savory Recipes for the First Week of 2012...

Happy 2012!  I hope this year finds you healthy and blessed and ready to try new recipes!  Since it is very cold outside where I live, I decided to focus on some hearty home-style recipes that will hopefully leave you nostalgic and satisfied!

Basic Meat Loaf

Meat Loaf: the great debate...some people love it, some people don't.  Here's my question: if you love it, what do you love about it? Simplicity? Taste? If you don't love it, what don't you love about it?

BBQ Chicken

And who doesn't like chicken?  It's versatile, easy to prepare, and easy to save and reuse.  I included the BBQ Chicken recipe to add a little pizzazz to the cold weather week!

Beef Carbonnade

I personally have not prepared the Beef Carbonnade recipe, but I am feeling adventurous and it looks delicious.  Savory is the word I am looking for.

Stay warm, be adventurous in your cooking, and as always we love feed back and photos!
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