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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Family Favorite

Growing up I only remember having this once.  However it was a staple for my husband; many easy casseroles were. He loves this casserole; as do BAP and SSP.  After hard grueling work as a CPA, my husband on occasion desires some old fashioned comfort food.  This recipe did the trick.

Crockpot Tater Tot Casserole
adapted from: http://recipesfromsisters.blogspot.com/2011/01/crockpot-tater-tot-casserole.html

2pounds ground beef
1/2 large onion, diced
1 T minced garlic
salt/pepper
1 t garlic powder
24oz tater tots
3 1/2 cups frozen veggies (I had a mix of corn, beans, peas and carrots)
1 can potato broccoli and cheddar soup (like this)
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cup shredded cheese
1/2 cup shredded cheese

Brown and drain ground beef with onion. Stir in salt/pepper/garlic powder. Put half the tater tots on the bottom of a large greased crockpot (mine is 6qt). Sprinkle with ground beef mixture. Pour UNthawed veggies on top. Top with 1 1/2cups shredded cheese. Pour soup and milk over.  Top with remaining tater tots.  Cook on LOW for 3hours. Then during last 15minutes of cooking top with remaining cheese; cover and watch it melt.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Well Done, Faithful Crockpot

About a month ago I made some delicious pulled pork.  I had some apple juice that I needed to use and so this recipe was dinner.  I love that it was a cinch to make and put together.  We loved it.

Apple Cider Pulled Pork
adapted from: http://www.gimmesomeoven.com/slow-cooker-apple-cider-pulled-pork/

2 pounds pork sirloin roast
1 red onion, sliced
1 cup apple juice
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 t cinnamon
salt/pepper

Place half the onions in a greased crockpot. Place pork on top of  the onions. In a measuring cup stir together the cider, vinegar, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt/pepper. Pour over roast. Top with remaining onions.  Cook on LOW 6-8hours. Shred with two forks. Serve with buns and BBQ sauce.  Superb!

Friday, April 11, 2014

What Is That...Tofu?!

Yes, I did buy tofu...but won't ever do it again!  I was looking for a protein alternative for meatless Fridays during Lent (so I bought a 4 pack).  It was not bad but not the best either.  I think I will just do meatless, in the old fashioned rice and beans sort of way....unless I try making tofu again with Mexican seasoning instead of Asian flair.

Vegetarian Lettuce Wraps
adapted from:  http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2012/02/vegetarian-lettuce-wraps/
& http://justasmidgenoflove.blogspot.com/2012/11/wrapped-up-in-style.html

"Meat"
1 (14oz) Firm Tofu, pour water off
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 t sesame oil
1/4 t powdered ginger
1T sugar

Sauce
2T Sriracha sauce
1T maple syrup
2 t sesame oil

In a non stick pan drizzle about 2 T olive oil.  Dump in drained tofu.  "Brown" as you would do ground beef for tacos/spaghetti.  Pour in soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger and sugar.  Mix around until all (or most) liquid is evaporated. In a small bowl combine Sriracha, syrup and sesame oil. Serve in bibb lettuce leaves (wrapped up taco style) and drizzled with sauce.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Old Rut

Why is that I seem to fall in the "old rut" ? Whenever my husband is busy on the job, the boys and I seem to enjoy the same things EVERY time.  Tonight I thought I would make a new and improved version of our stand-by of Dino bones.  I have so many rice krispies (I bought several bags, to satisfy that krispie treat tooth - the last batch was really sweet so further makings have been put on hold).

Funky Dino Bones
adapted from: http://serendipityandspice.com/rice-crispy-chicken-baked-goodness-with/

1 cup butter, melted
3 T Dijon mustard

2 1/2 cups rice krispie cereal
3/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1 packet Ranch Dressing mix

6 chicken breasts, halved and each half cut into 3 or 4 pieces

In a bowl combine melted butter and mustard stir well.  In another bowl combine cereal (slightly crushed), cheese and ranch dressing mix.  Place a piece of parchment paper on 2 cookie sheets. Grease well. Dip chicken in butter/mustard mixture.  Then in rice krispie mixture. Coat well.  Place each 'bone' on the rack (about 3 full breasts per rack).  Lightly spray with cooking spray. Bake at 350 for 45minutes until golden. Enjoy with your favorite dipping sauces (Ranch, ketchup, bbq sauce, etc).

Friday, April 4, 2014

Have You Found Nemo Yet?

We have.  My boys love the Pixar movie, "Finding Nemo."  It is one of our all time favorites (The boys were not sad that we were eating Nemo for dinner). About a month ago my sister in law shared a recipe for fish tacos. They are really tasty from the local taco shop; I thought I would try her recipe. I omitted the mango salsa, as I don't appreciate that taste (but served it on the side, since my husband likes it). I liked the idea of the fish being baked (as opposed to fried). I did adapt the recipe to be gluten free. It was still tasty.

Fish Tacos with Creamy Slaw
adapted from: http://beautifulmess46.blogspot.com/2014/03/baked-fish-tacos-with-creamy-slaw-and.html

Fish
1 pound white fish (cod, cut into smallish chunks)
2 T lime juice
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 t salt
1/2 t ground mild curry
2 garlic cloves, minced
Marinade fish for a few hours (24 max) in fridge.

Breading
1/2 cup rice flour/cornstarch
1/2 t garlic powder
1/4 t pepper
1 1/2 cups crushed potato chips
2 eggs, beaten
Drain fish.  Dip in flour, garlic, and pepper. Then eggs. Coat with chips. Place on a well greased foiled lined baking dish.  Lightly spray with cooking spray.  Bake at 450 for about 15minutes.

Slaw
1 package angel shredded cabbage
1/4 cup mayo
2 T cider vinegar
2 T honey
2 T lime juice
salt/pepper
While fish bakes, combine all slaw ingredients.

Layer in tortillas: fish,, slaw and other taco toppings (Black beans would go well with this.)

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Pie For Dinner...We Like This

Perusing through one of my cooking magazines I found a recipe for chicken pot pie.  Hmmm...I wonder if I could get a way with something like that for dinner? Would the boys eat it or just squirm looking at it?  They both (or all three...if you count my husband) loved it...even as it was LOADED with veggies.  Perfect meal.  I made the filling in the morning and made the topping about an hour before dinner time.  Perfect!

Chicken Pot Pie
adapted from: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Chicken-Pot-Pie-II
& http://www.theglutenfreevegan.com/2014/03/copycat-cheddar-bay-biscuits-gluten-free-vegan/

Filling
3 cups chicken breasts, cooked & chopped (I seasoned with garlic, onion and dried spinach)
1 cup chicken broth
1 1/2 cups milk
5 T butter
1/2 large onion, chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped
1/3 cup rice flour
1 t dried thyme
2 cups frozen mixed veggies (I had a mix of peas, carrots, corn and beans)

Place cooked chicken chunks in a large bowl with frozen veggies. In a sauce pan saute onion and celery in butter.  After veggies have softened slightly add flour, thyme, broth and milk. Cook until thickened.  Remove from heat.  Cool slightly.  Add to chicken and veggies.  Stir. Dump in a greased 2 quart deep dish.

Topping
2/3 cup buttermilk
1 cup Gluten Free bisquick mix (I made my own using this recipe) plus a little extra for tossing
1/4 t garlic powder
1/2 t coarse ground black pepper
3 T butter
3/4 cup shredded cheese

Pulse bisquick mix, garlic powder, pepper, butter and cheese.  Slowly add milk until just combined.  Scoop by 1/8cupfuls and toss in additional mix. Set aside in fridge until you need to top the pie (about mid baking time).

Preheat oven to 400.  Place filling pan in oven for about 30minutes until slightly bubbly.  Drop biscuits on top. Bake for an additional 15-20minutes until toothpick comes out clean.  Drizzle additional (3T) melted  butter on top of biscuits. Sprinkle with garlic salt.

ENJOY!

SPECIAL NOTE: You can substitute regular white flour for the rice flour and regular bisquick for the Gluten Free type instead.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Date Night Favorite

The last few times that my dear husband and I have gone to dinner, as a date, we have ordered Onion Rings.  Man, we are addicted!  The most recent ones we ordered we really superb.  We loved every bite.  I am dying to make them myself now.

Battered Onion Rings
adapted from: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/tempura-battered-onion-rings-recipe.html

Oil, preferably corn

2 sweet onions, peeled and cut into thick rings
1 1/2 cups rice flour
1 T baking powder
1 T baking soda
1 egg yolk
1 cup beer
1/2 t salt
pepper

Heat oil to 350.  In a mixing bowl combine dry ingredients.  Whisk egg yolk in another bowl. Slowly add egg and beer (until it is as thick as pancake batter).  Dip onions(after removing the slimy film between rings) flour then into batter.  Fry until golden.  Place on cooling rack (over a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper) to rest. Salt and pepper.