Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Pasta with Chicken and Squash

Click here for link to recipe

This sauce for this recipe has lots of fat. I usually cut the amount of heavy cream in half or you could use half and half cream instead of heavy cream. I only add a little bit of grated cheese to the cream instead of the full amount. Since we only eat this once a month, it's not so bad. I serve each part of this on separate plates so everyone can get what they want. If you left out the noodles and just ate the chicken and squash it would be healthier. Also I leave out the savory spice cause it's expensive.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Chicken Fajitas Indoors (from America's Test Kitchen)

The smell of the chicken cooking is amazing!

Serves 4 to 6
1/3 cup lime juice (from 2 to 3 limes)
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 medium cloves garlic , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1 tablespoon)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 jalapeño chile , seeds and ribs removed, chile minced (I leave this out)
1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro leaves
Table salt and ground black pepper
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds), trimmed of fat, breasts pounded to 1/2-inch thickness
1 large red onion (about 14 ounces), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch-thick rounds (do not separate rings)
1 large red bell pepper (about 10 ounces), quartered, stemmed, and seeded
1 large green bell pepper (about 10 ounces), quartered, stemmed, and seeded
8 - 12 plain flour tortillas (6-inch)

1. In medium bowl, whisk together lime juice, 4 tablespoons oil, garlic, Worcestershire, brown sugar, jalapeño (optional), cilantro, 1 teaspoon salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Reserve 1/4 cup marinade in small bowl; set aside. Add another teaspoon salt to remaining marinade. Place chicken in marinade; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 15 minutes.

2. Adjust one oven rack to upper-middle position (about 8 inches from heating element) and second rack to lower-middle position; heat broiler.

3. Brush both sides of onion rounds and peppers with 2 tablespoons oil and season with salt and pepper. Arrange onion rounds and peppers (skin sides up) in single layer on rimmed baking sheet. Wrap tortillas securely in foil in two packets, each containing half of tortillas.

4. Remove chicken from marinade and pat dry with paper towels; discard marinade. Heat remaining 2 teaspoons oil in 12-inch nonstick or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat until just beginning to smoke. Swirl oil to coat skillet, then arrange chicken smooth side down in skillet in single layer; cook without moving chicken, until well browned, about 3 minutes. Using tongs, flip chicken; continue to cook until second sides are well browned, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and continue to cook, turning chicken once or twice, until chicken is no longer pink when cut into with paring knife or instant-read thermometer inserted in thickest part registers 160 degrees, 3 to 5 minutes longer. Transfer chicken to large plate and let rest 5 minutes.

5. While chicken is cooking, place baking sheet with vegetables in oven on upper rack; place tortilla packets on lower rack. Broil vegetables until spottily charred and peppers are crisp-tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Using tongs, transfer peppers to cutting board. Flip onion rounds and continue to broil until charred and tender, 2 to 4 minutes longer. Turn off broiler and remove vegetables, leaving tortillas in oven until needed.

6. Separate onions into rings and place in medium bowl; slice bell peppers lengthwise into 1/4-inch strips and place in bowl with onions. Add 2 tablespoons reserved unused marinade to vegetables and toss well to combine. Slice chicken into 1/4-inch strips and toss with remaining 2 tablespoons reserved marinade in separate bowl; arrange chicken and vegetables on large platter and serve with warmed tortillas.

Per Serving:
Cal 410; Fat 19 g; Sat fat 2.5 g; Chol 570 mg; Carb 31 g; Protein 31 g; Fiber 3 g; Sodium 570 mg

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Week Four Menu

1. Lasagna
2. Sweet and Sour Chicken Wings
3. Pasta with Chicken and Squash (one of Scott's favorites)
4. Taco Soup
5. Indoor Chicken Fajitas (one of my favorites)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Smashed Red Potatoes

We love these!!!

2 lbs. red potatoes, unpeeled and scrubbed
Table salt
1 bay leaf
4 T. butter, melted and warm
½ c cream cheese (4 oz) room temp ( I like to use 6 oz. and you can use the 1/3 less fat cream cheese, it still tastes really good- just not as tangy)

1. Place potatoes in large saucepan and cover wit 1 in. cold water; add 1 tsp salt and bay leaf. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium low and simmer gently until paring knife can be inserted into potatoes wit no resistance, 35-45 min. Reserve ½ c cooking water, then drain potatoes. Return to pot, discard bay leaf, and allow potatoes to stand in pot, uncovered, til surfaces are dry, about 5 min.
2. While potatoes dry, whisk melted butter and softened cream cheese in bowl until smooth and fully incorporated. Add ¼ c of reserved cooking water, ½ tsp pepper and ½ tsp salt. Using rubber spatula or back of large spoon, smash potatoes just enough to break skins. Fold in butter-cream cheese mix until most of liquid has been absorbed and chunks of potatoes remain. Add more cooking water 1 T. at a time as needed, until potatoes are slightly looser than desired (potatoes with thicken slightly with standing). Adjust seasonings with salt and pepper. Can make ahead and keep in crock pot on warm for up to 2 hours.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Tex Mex Ravioli

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Stand Time: 5 minutes
Yield: Makes 6 servings

* 1 (16-ounce) jar mild salsa
* 1 (10 3/4-ounce) can tomato puree
* 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
* 1 (28-ounce) bag frozen cheese ravioli, unthawed
* 2 (19-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
* 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
* 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
* 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
* 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese


Combine first 3 ingredients. Pour 1/2 cup sauce mixture on the bottom of a lightly greased 2-quart oval or 11- x 7-inch baking dish. Top evenly with frozen cheese ravioli. Layer with black beans, chopped cilantro, green onions, and remaining sauce mixture; top evenly with shredded Cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses.

Bake, covered with aluminum foil, at 350° for 45 minutes or until bubbly. Remove foil, and bake 5 more minutes. Let stand 5 minutes.
-Southern Living

Monday, April 12, 2010

All American Turkey Potpie
I use turkey after Thanksgiving, but the rest of the time I use chicken. Using chicken that's been pressure canned makes this go faster.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


Peanut Butter Toffee Cheesecake Brownies-you have to try these!

Baked Ziti

1 lb lean ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 ¾ cups spaghetti sauce
1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes undrained
1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
6 T. cup water
1 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1 ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoons dried basil
¾ teaspoons dried oregano, divided
8 oz uncooked rigatoni or uncooked medium tube pasta
1 carton (8 ounces) reduced-fat ricotta cheese (I can only find 16 oz cartons, so I freeze half for next time)
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 egg light beaten
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
In a large saucepan, cook beef, onions and garlic over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in spaghetti sauce, tomatoes, tomato paste, water, parsley, Worcestershire sauce, basil and 1 teaspoon oregano. Cover and simmer for 3 hours ( I just let mine cook while the pasta is cooking-about 10 min.), stirring occasionally. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. In a bowl, combine ricotta, mozzarella, 2 T. Parmesan cheese, egg, salt and pepper.
In one greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dishes coated with cooking spray, spread 1 cup of meat sauce. Layer a half of the pasta, 1/3 meat sauce and a half of the cheese mixture. Repeat layers of pasta, sauce and cheese mixture. Top with remaining sauce. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese and oregano. Cover and bake at 350° for 1 hour or until heated through.
*We eat half of this so I freeze half of this (don’t bake it) and use it another night.

Sunday, April 4, 2010


1 pkg ground beef
1 clove garlic, minced
1 c cottage cheese
1/2 t salt
1/2 c real mayo
4 oz. mozzarella cheese
1 pkg manicotti shells, cooked and drained
1 jar pizza sauce

Brown beef and garlic. Drain off fat. Add cottage cheese, salt, mayo and cheese. Spoon filling into each shell and place in lightly oiled baking dish. Pour pizza sauce over top of filled shells and sprinkle with a little extra cheese. Cover with foil. Bake at 350 for 15 min. Then remove foil and bake for another 10 min.