Archive for the ‘Main Dishes’ Category
I love little kids this time of year….not that I don’t love little kids any time of the year, but this is just such a fun and magical time of year and the little kids are all looking forward to Christmas morning when they get to see what Santa has brought them and open the gifts that everyone else has given as well. Then to add to the excitement – being the Grandma that I am, a friend that I work with told me about Elf on a Shelf, so I got right on the ole computer and ordered one of those little elves to keep our home in order. The objective is that when you receive the elf, he doesn’t have a name yet – so the little ones get to name him, then kids aren’t supposed to touch the elf because he’ll lose his magic. Then each night while the kids are asleep, the elf flies back to the North Pole to report their behavior to Santa, then the elf shows up in a different location in the house each morning. Trust me, it’s been a great way to keep Londyn chilled out a little…..lol. Londyn named her elf Rosco – yeah, I know – Rosco P. Coltrain, hehehe, boy that brings back some memories, and never mind the fact that I’m totally dating myself.
I’ve posted some recipes for cookies this month, but I think that it’s also good to have some comfort food for some yummy dinners to go with the tasty cookie treats, just to keep up a healthy balance *wink, wink* so I figured that this would be fun to try out. I love chicken breasts and cheese and herbs, so that’s where the inspiration for this came from. It really doesn’t take that long to make this chicken either. Served up with a nice salad and it’s actually a pretty good winter time dinner.
Start with 2 oz prosciutto, chopped up fairly small and a little olive oil. Cook that for just a couple of minutes, then add 2 garlic cloves chopped up and some finely chopped fresh rosemary. Your family with thank you for those wonderful romas, and then your kitchen will. Cook for an additional minute then set aside to cool.
Grate some Fontina cheese and add the cooled prosciutto to it. Set that aside.
Take and cut a small pouch in each chicken breast. Then spoon the cheese mixture into the pouches.
In a separate bowl, pour 1 cup of plain bread crumbs and some salt and pepper, then in one more bowl combine 2 eggs and a little milk with a dab of Dijon mustard. Now dip the chicken in the egg wash, then dredge it in the bread crumbs and cook on both sides in a skillet with a little olive oil.
Then while those chicken breasts are cooking, in a separate skillet on the stove top, melt 3 tablespoons of butter and saute 1/4 cup of shallots. Then add 8 oz of mushrooms, roughly chopped. Cook until the mushrooms start to cook down and they start to release their moisture.
Then add 2 tablespoons of flour with some salt and pepper allowing the flour to cook for just a minute. Then add sour cream and whipping cream…..allow that to simmer for just a couple more minutes, until it’s thickened.
Serve that wonderful mushroom sauce over the chicken and watch your family fall in love. Then go ahead and savor, then melt and fall in love yourself.
Prosciutto Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Mushroom Sauce
Adapted from My Recipes.com
For the Chicken
2 oz chopped prosciutto
1 1/2 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 C shredded Fontina cheese
4 skinless chicken breasts
1 C plain bread crumbs
1/4 C milk
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
3 Tbsp olive oil
For the Sauce:
From Group Recipes
8 oz fresh mushrooms, roughly chopped
3 Tbsp butter
1/2 C minced shallot
2 Tbsp flour
1/2 C sour cream
1 C heavy whipping cream
Salt and Pepper to taste
In a non-stick skillet, spray with cooking spray and saute prosciutto for 2 minutes, add rosemary and garlic to the pan; saute for 1 minute longer. Set mixture aside and allow to cool to room temperature. Stir in cheese. Cut a horizontal slit in each chicken breast half to form a pocket. Spoon 1 to 2 tablespoons of cheese mixture into each breast. Place bread crumbs in a shallow dish, combine eggs, milk and mustard in a separate shallow dish and whisk together. Working with one chicken breast at a time, dip each one into the milk mixture, then dredge in the bread crumbs, coating chicken completely. Heat non-stick skillet over medium heat, add oil to the pan and add chicken. Cook 10 minutes on each side or until browned and done through.
For the sauce:
Over medium heat, melt butter then saute shallot for 2 minutes. Then add mushrooms and saute for an additional 2 minutes or until the mushrooms start to release their moisture. Then add flour and salt and pepper and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Add heavy whipping cream and sour cream and allow to simmer until thickened. Pour over chicken and serve immediately. Serves 4
So who is ready for Christmas? Do you have your shopping done yet? I have to tell you, this year we’ve nearly got the shopping done. At this point we only have Londyn to take care of and the trick with her is getting her to decide on what exactly she wants from Santa……but she is only 4, so I think we might have to just get a general idea and go from there. I love Christmas through a child’s eyes, the excitement and the innocence is just so breathtaking and refreshing.
In our busy season and during the week after working all day, I kind of like quick meals so remembering back several years ago, my younger brother worked at a little restaurant/delivery place that made these really good sausage sandwiches with pizza sauce and a big hoagie roll, so I wanted to recreate that same sandwich but with my own twist.
I started out with some country sausage from Smith’s and I just patted four patties and cooked them in a skillet. About 4 – 5 minutes on both sides, depending upon the thickness.
Then I had some ciabatta sandwich buns that required some butter and a little Parmesan cheese and then they made a little trip under the broiler until they were a nice golden brown.
Then some pizza sauce – I just had this in the fridge from a pizza that I made, but I would recommend something a little thicker so that the bread doesn’t get soggy.
Now the hard part – place a sausage patty on one half of the ciabatta bun, then top with some pizza sauce.
Then some mozzarella cheese and some mild pepper rings or canned yellow peppers.
Top all of that wonderful delicious stuff with the other half of the ciabatta bun and you’ve got yourself a dandy sandwich. You’ll love it, you’re family will love it and it’s soooo quick and easy! Enjoy folks!!!!
Italian Sausage Sandwiches
1 Lb country sausage
4 Ciabatta rolls
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese
4 slices mozzarella cheese
1 small bottle of pizza (Ragu works best for thickness)
Canned mild pepper rings
Cook sausage into 4 patties in a skillet, while sausage is cooking, break ciabatta rolls in half onto a baking sheet and top with butter and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and broil until golden brown. Place sausage patties on each half of ciabatta rolls, top with pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese and pepper rings, top with the other half of the ciabatta roll, serve immediately. Serves 4
This is probably one of my favorite times of the year, not that things have necessarily cooled off outside just yet, but because I’m getting into the kitchen more to do my canning and such. This is the time of the year when one can find a huge selection of ripe fruit and veggies at any fruit market. This is the time of year when salsa is being created and canned for the winter. This is also the time of year when you can find those wonderful Anaheim peppers that smell so incredible when they’re being roasted…..oh I just love that aroma!
A couple of days ago I just happened to be at the local Harmon’s grocery store and low and behold there was a huge banner hanging from the front of the store advertising fresh roasted Anaheim peppers – I thought I had died and went to heaven walking through the parking lot, the smell was absolutely incredible! Needless to say, I just had to buy some of those wonderful peppers. Then I remembered a conversation that I had earlier this year with a long time friend about a simple scrumptious dish that she and her family really enjoyed. It was a really simple recipe too, so I just couldn’t resist, I just sounded too good not to try it with some of those fresh roasted peppers. My friend was right, very tasty and super easy.
I started with ground meat and about 6 peppers along with some garlic salt, pepper and Mexican oregano.
Once the meat was browned through, I wrapped it in egg roll wraps and fried them until they were crispy.
Add some salsa to that and you’ve got yourself an awesome meal!!!! Thank you Amy for sharing this with me!!!
Beef and Anaheim Pepper Egg Rolls
1 lb ground beef
5 – 6 Anaheim peppers, chopped
1 tsp Mexican oregano
2 tsp garlic salt
pepper to taste
Egg roll wraps
Brown ground beef, peppers and spices until meat is no longer pink. Place 3 – 4 tablespoons of meat mixture in a single egg roll wrap and roll up, brushing it with just a small amount of water to seal the end. Deep fry until golden and crisp. Serve with salsa.
Here in the local area, we have a very well known little Greek restaurant where the food is just phenomenal. I haven’t had a bad meal from our little Greek restaurant ever! One of my favorite things about Greek food is the lemon rice that is served with so many of their dishes, that fresh lemony flavor just slays me every time, so for several years now, I’ve hunted for the perfect lemon rice recipe……well, finally my dream has been realized…….and I shed a little tear!
A friend at work shared these recipes with me and I’ve actually made them several times since – they’re just fantastic and so easy!
I started with a little mayo and some Greek salad dressing. Mixing them together and then pouring the entire contents into a 1 gallon ziplock bag……this sat in the fridge for a few hours.
When I was ready to finish my dinner……my mouth was watering as I was getting my ingredients together for this….I started with a half cube of butter (yes I said a half of a cube of butter) but hang with me okay?
Once the luscious butter was all melted, I added rice and just gave it a good stir a couple of times.
Ok, now some chicken broth, garlic salt and of course…..my favorite seasoning…..fresh squeezed lemon juice.
Once the lemon has been stirred into the mixture, be sure you don’t stir any more as it will make the rice mushy….eww! Cover it all and let it simmer for about 20 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.
While the rice is doing the happy dance on the stove, fire up the grill and cook your chicken. 4 – 5 minutes on each side for breast tenders…..or until they have a golden brown finish…..like these.
Throw it all on a plate and enjoy folks…….a wonderful, easy, Greek meal doesn’t require tons of time in the kitchen.
What’s your favorite Greek dish….I would love to know!
Grilled Greek Chicken
1 C Kraft Greek Dressing
1/2 C Mayonnaise
Mix dressing and mayo together in mixing bowl, and place both the mayo mixture and chicken in a gallon ziplock back. Marinade for 3-5 hours.
1 cube Imperial Margarine
1 cup reg long grain rice (not instant)
1 can Swanson’ chicken broth
1/3 C lemon juice
Garlic salt and pepper
Melt margarine in med sauce pan and add rice. Sprinkle on garlic salt (about 2-3 shakes) and pepper (2-3 shakes). Coat rice thoroughly, stirring frequently but not browning.
Slowly add can of chicken broth. Add lemon juice and stir. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until cooked through. DO NOT stir rice once you have covered it – this makes it mushy. Takes about 20-25 minutes total.
You know, as a kid I really just didn’t care for what my Mom called “goulash”, for some reason the thought of casseroles just didn’t appeal to me much then. However, we ate what Mom fixed because if we didn’t, we were going to get pretty darn hungry. Once I got older and started cooking for my own family, I saw the value in making casseroles and yup, even goulash type meals.
I found this one a few years ago in the Taste of Home magazine and it’s just one of those go to recipes that everyone seems to really like. So I make it every once in awhile during the winter months in particular.
I start with some hamburger, green pepper, onion and garlic in a non-stick skillet and brown them all together.
Once everything has been browned sufficiently, i.e. there isn’t any more pink in the burger, then I add some frozen corn, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, chili powder and oregano, then I stir it all up together so that everything can get acquainted.
Adapted from Taste of Home
1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean)
1 large onion, chopped
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
1 cup fresh or frozen corn
1/2 cup water
1-1/4 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup uncooked elbow macaroni
1 cup shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese
In a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, cook beef and onion until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the tomatoes, tomato sauce, corn, water, chili powder, oregano and salt.
Bring to a boil; stir in macaroni. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 18-22 minutes or until macaroni is tender. Sprinkle with cheese. Yield: 5 servings.
The colder months just make me want soups and the comfort type food still, even though we’ve moved through the holidays there is still just something about the cold evenings and a hot bowl of hearty soup that completes the day. I found this recipe on a blog that features so many yummy recipes, some are lower in calories. I’m pretty impressed with this site and I’ll link up to it for this recipe below.
I started by browning some Italian sausage, onion, garlic and red pepper flakes in a skillet. I’ve discovered sweet onions vs. the plain yellow onions too. Sweet onions have a very mild taste to them and they don’t typically burn your eyes during the chopping process. The yellow onions are quite a bit stronger, still good for just about anything that calls for onions though. Thought I would share that little tid bit.
Once the sausage, garlic and red pepper flakes are browned drain the drippings off and set that aside. In a good sized stock pot add some chicken broth and potatoes and add the sausage. Allow to boil until potatoes are tender. If you wish, you can brown about 4 slices of bacon to add to the soup as well.
Chop up some kale, this stuff just rocks!!!!
Reduce the heat and add the half and half and heat through, just before serving add the chopped kale.
This was such good soup, very hearty tasting without tons of calories and I still got my comfort food. Let me know what you think.
Adapted from Cook, Eat, Share
1 Lb Italian sausage
1 small onion, chopped
1 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (unless you prefer to reduce or omit)
1 Tbsp minced garlic
32 oz chicken broth
4 slices bacon, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 C kale (chopped) or as much you wish
4 – 6 small potatoes, diced or thinly cut up
1 C half and half cream.
Brown sausage, onion, red pepper, and garlic. Set aside, brown bacon and add to sausage. In a stock pot combine chicken broth, potatoes and sausage mixture. Simmer until potatoes are soft. Add half and half cream and heat through. Add kale just before serving. 8 servings
You know, so many times meatloaf just doesn’t get the respect it really deserves. I mean, there are some not so great meatloaf recipes out there but by the same token, there are some super good ones out there too. Several years ago when my girls were little, I got a Betty Crocker cookbook for Christmas and I decided to try the meatloaf recipe, then I kind of put my own spin on it too…..that has been the go to since. Now I’ve tried some others over the years that were pretty darn good, but for some reason this is the one that my family usually eats the best.
Now, I started with hamburger and some elk burger…….but I realize that not everyone has elk available, and some don’t care to have it available and that’s just fine. Straight, full on hamburger or ground turkey or pork is just fine too.
Now the fun part, I threw in some bread crumbs, sage, salt, dry mustard, eggs, fresh garlic, BBQ sauce, chopped onion and worcestershire sauce and milk. Once that’s all in the same bowl, I combined everything well with my hands.
Put that baby in a baking pan and cut about 3 slices of bacon up and set them on top.
I popped it in the oven for about an hour and there you have it, super wonderful, moist and flavorful meatloaf.
Adapted from Bettery Crocker
1 1/2 lb ground beef
3/4 C plain bread crumbs
1/2 C milk
1 tsp ground sage
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dry mustard
2 cloves garlic (diced)
1/2 C BBQ sauce
1 small onion, chopped
1 Tbsp worcestershire sauce
3 slices bacon
Combine all ingredients with hands except bacon. Place in baking dish and top with sliced bacon. Bake at 350 for 60 minutes. Serves 8 – 10
These are probably my all time favorite wraps, they’re not only easy and satisfying but they’re also fairly nutritious – but that’s the best thing about wraps is that they can be made with anything and there are so many varieties in wraps – I love options!!!!
We used to order these from a local restaurant here a few years ago, but the menu has been changed and so we haven’t been able to get them any longer……but fortunately I had experimented a bit and found some things that worked and actually ended up having more flavor than those we had ordered.
I started by making some Spanish rice – now either the rice mix from a box or my recipe is good – the main idea is to make sure those spicy flavors are in the rice. I made my own rice here and found that I liked it just as well as that in a box.
Then while the rice was cooking away in the cooker, I started working on shredding some chicken, rotisserie chicken works great for this, but once again, you can certainly grill it if you want – either way is great! After the chicken was shredded I placed it into a skillet with a little water and salt and pepper to taste and just warmed it up, maybe only about 1/4 cup of water was all I needed.
I mashed up a avocado and squeezed fresh lime into it – about 1/4 of the lime was needed, just to taste.
Then it was time for those wonderful black beans, which I added a bit of coriander, cumin and garlic salt to and just warmed them up in a small sauce pan. (YUMMMM) Love black beans!!!!
Once the rice was done, the chicken warmed up, and the beans good and hot, it was time to assemble all of this into one happy tomato basil tortilla (I’ve used spinach tortillas too….they’re just as yummy). I started with the avocado, then the chicken, black beans, rice and finally some mozzarella cheese.
Then wrap up, tucking both ends in and rolling them up.
Cut in half to allow to be picked up a little easier……Yummmy!
What is your favorite wrap? Is it a slab of deli meat with some cheese and lettuce or do you go all out????
Sonoran Chicken Wraps
Flavored tortilla shells
1 rotisserie chicken, shredded
1/4 C water
Salt and pepper to taste
1 15 oz can of black beans
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp garlic salt
Spanish rice mix prepared
1 avocado, mashed
1/4 fresh lime, squeezed
1 1/2 C mozzarella cheese, shredded
Prepare rice according packaging, while rice is cooking shred chicken and place in a skillet with water, salt and pepper and warm chicken through. Place the black beans in a small sauce pan and add cumin, coriander and garlic salt and heat. Mash avocado and add fresh lime and combine. Assemble wrap with everything and add cheese then folding both sides, roll up and cut in half, serve immediately. Serves 6
Around here, we like BBQ just about any time of the day, night, or season so I make sure to keep plenty of BBQ sauce on hand whether it’s made right here in my kitchen or bought from the store, I always have some on hand just in case of that emergency when someone is just itching for that flavor.
I love to grill through the summer months, but it sure gets harder for me to get outside to light the grill in the winter months, so that’s when I move it into the kitchen. This was actually inspired by the Pioneer Woman, she’s really an awesome lady and I read her blog posts just about every day – I’ve tried several of her recipes and they’re all super good, the family thinks so too!
I started by browning some chicken breasts in a little olive oil with some salt and pepper sprinkled over it.
Then I set the chicken on a plate and chopped up some onions and garlic and cooked them in the oil. It’s starting to smell really good now.
Once the onions have softened a bit, I added some whiskey and let that simmer and reduce a bit.
Then I added some red current jelly to the mixture.
And finally some BBQ sauce and then stirred the mixture.
Now the star of the show…..the chicken. Just add that back into the sauce, cover and let it just simmer for a bit, until it’s no longer pink inside and really tender.
Serve with some rice pilaf and you’ve got yourself a pretty dang good meal!
Whiskey BBQ Chicken
Adapted from Pioneer Woman
2 – 3 Tbsp olive oil
4 chicken breasts
1 medium onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, diced
1/2 C whiskey
1/2 C red currant jelly
1/2 – 3/4 C BBQ sauce
In a dutch oven or non-stick skillet, brown chicken on both sides, set aside and add chopped onions and garlic and saute until onions are transparent. Add whiskey and allow to reduce, about 5 minutes. Add jelly and BBQ sauce, add chicken back into the pan, cover and simmer on low for 30 – 45 minutes. Serves 4
It’s been awhile since we were able to enjoy a nice warm day with BBQ chicken and I get a hankering for that BBQ spice taste every once in awhile. With the colder weather though, I still want the comfort type foods too, so it only makes sense that I put this together for a quick evening meal. It’s both satisfying and comforting.
I started with some chicken tenderloins, some BBQ sauce (I cheated and used some that I purchased), flour and some cooking oil.
I heated the cooking oil in a dutch oven, but this step can be accomplished in a skillet too. Dredge the chicken in a little flour and brown it on both sides, just a couple of minutes each side. If you’re using a skillet to brown the chicken, it can then be placed in an oven safe baking dish and covered.
Be sure to sprinkle a little salt and pepper on the chicken as you go, just to taste.
I don’t use any measurements here, just be sure that you add a little water with the BBQ sauce, and just some of the wonderful, delicious…….awesome smelling stuff over the top of the chicken. It’s making my mouth water all over again!
Pop that chicken in the oven at 350 for about 45 minutes………Yum!
You won’t need a knife to cut this stuff, but you’ll need to have plenty of chicken for everyone to have a lot, because this stuff goes fast! I served it with some green bean casserole – as you can see in the background there…….who says green bean casserole is just for the holidays, right? Either way, you really have to try this stuff, it’s simple and delicious and did I mention easy?
Oven BBQ Chicken
1 Lb chicken tenderloins
1/2 C flour
BBQ sauce (your favorite flavor)
1/4 C cooking oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Dredge chicken in the flour, sprinkle salt and pepper over chicken and brown on both sides (about 2 – 3 minutes each side). Place browned chicken in an oven safe baking dish, add water and BBQ sauce and cover. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes. Serve warm. Serves 4