Sunday, September 30, 2012

Incredibly Easy Chicken Dinner!

Sundays are SUPER busy for me with all the errands (and fun chores like laundry) so I keep it simple when it comes to dinner. I'm a big fan of the Kraft website since most of their recipes are easy and fairly healthy. Tonight, I made Creamy Lemon Chicken Pasta and took a shortcut with cooked chicken strips which I always have in the freezer. The meal came together in 20 minutes and it was delicious! The lemon flavor was perfect with the chicken and you really can't go wrong with cream cheese. What a nice way to end a busy day!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Yes We Still Eat Out!

It's been a while since I've posted pictures of our dining expeditions mainly cuz we haven't gone anywhere new but don't think that I slave away in the kitchen all weekend! Here we are at our favorite local spot, Tres. You can't beat a great pitcher of Margaritas AND yummy food just 3 blocks away!

Friday, September 28, 2012

It's a Pasta Revolution!

I ordered America's Test Kitchen's Pasta Revolution last week and couldn't wait to start making some of the recipes. I decided to start with the Creamy Crabmeat Fettuccine, which I substituted Fusilli for but kept everything else pretty much the same. Ok, I lied, I pretty much made my own version and here's the recipe. It turned out really yummy though! Perfectly creamy and just a touch of heat from the cayenne. A great way to start the weekend indeed!


1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 c onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried tarragon
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 c dry sherry
1/2 c heavy cream
1/2 lb cooked crabmeat
Fusilli, cooked al dente
Parmesan, for topping


1. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, thyme, tarragon and cayenne and cook until fragrant, 1 minute.

2. Stir in sherry and simmer until nearly evaporated, 5 minutes. Stir in cream and simmer until thickened, 5 minutes.

3. Add crabmeat and pasta and warm through. Serve with Parmesan on top.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Big O Chicken Legs!

Chicken Leg Quarters go on sale quite often but for the longest time I was totally intimidated by them. I mean, they're HUGE and I couldn't imagine what I'd do with them! I finally conquered my fear a while ago and nowadays I always keep a few in the freezer for yummy recipes like Chicken Normandy. I finished the dish on the stovetop and still got a nicely browned skin since I gave them a good sear and the flour definitely helped. I've made this dish once before using chicken thighs but I thought the legs quarters were even better since I LOVE drumsticks! I also liked the addition of apple cider which added more fruitiness. I served the chicken over mashed potatoes and it was a very comforting meal especially now that the nights are getting chilly.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Thai Pork in Chili Sauce WILL Make Your Cold Go Away!

My poor hubby is sick so I thought I'd make something comforting like Thai Pork in Chili Sauce to make him feel better. Man, that spicy curry can really clear your sinuses! I did make a few additions thanks to my favorite Gourmet Garden herbs in a tube so here's my recipe.


1 Tbsp oil
1/2 lb ground pork
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp red curry paste
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp lemon grass paste
1 c chopped canned tomatoes, undrained
2 Tbsp Fish sauce
1 Tbsp brown sugar
Rice noodles, for serving
Green onions, for garnish


1. Heat oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the pork and cook until browned, 5 minutes.

2. Add the garlic, curry paste, ginger and lemon grass and cook until fragrant, 1 minute.

3. Stir in the tomatoes, fish sauce and brown sugar. Turn heat down to low and simmer until pork is cooked through, 5 minutes.

4. Serve over rice noodles and garnish with green onions.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Buffalo Chicken without the Bar!

We LOVE to order Buffalo Chicken at bars so tonight, I thought I'd turn our favorite bar snack into a Mac and Cheese dinner. In my experience, combining 2 yummy things usually mean 1 VERY yummy result! This Mac and Cheese has all the ingredients you'd expect from a big platter of Buffalo Chicken like carrots, wing sauce and of course, BLUE CHEESE SAUCE! I


3 oz blue cheese, crumbled
1/4 c heavy cream
1/4 c sour cream
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp butter
1/2 c carrots, peeled and diced
1/4 c onions, diced
1 Tbsp flour
1/2 c whole milk
1 c shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 c buffalo wing sauce
Pasta, cooked al dente
1/2 lb chicken strips, cooked


1. In a small bowl, stir together the blue cheese, heavy cream, sour cream and cayenne until smooth. Set aside.

2. Heat butter in a pan over medium heat until melted. Add the carrots and onions and sauté until softened, 5 minutes. Add flour and stir for 1 minute.

3. Add the milk and bring to a boil. Cook until mixture thickens, 5 minutes. 

4. Turn off the heat and stir in the shredded cheese until smooth. Stir in buffalo wing sauce, blue cheese mixture, pasta and chicken. Serve immediately.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

French Fried Onion Rings Make EVERYTHING Better!

What can make a creamy pasta meal made with Cream of Mushroom Soup even better? Top it with French Fried Onions Rings like this Sausage Noodle Casserole! Seriously, I can't think of a more comforting Sunday night meal!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Watching Paula Deen Pays Off Y'all!

This morning, I watched Paula Deen make Crawfish Fettuccini and it looked SO good (just like everything else she makes)! I didn't have crawfish so I substituted imitation crabmeat instead since my hubby seems to love that stuff. I also have a thing against long pasta (they never cook right for me!) so I used fusilli. As with all of Paula's recipes, it was heavy on the butter which meant it was ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Chicken Nuggets to the Rescue!

Whenever I find Tyson's Chicken Nuggets on sale, I always pick up a bag cuz they make super easy and quick meals. Don't let the word NUGGETS fool you into thinking they're unhealthy. They're nothing like the fast food variety and are made of all white meat and natural ingredients! Of course, we love them as snacks but with a bit of creativity, they can turn into a yummy dinner like tonight's Chicken Parmesan and Shells! Super quick and easy and just the perfect Friday night meal!


1 Tbsp butter
1/4 c onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp red chili flakes
1 c chopped canned tomatoes, undrained
1/2 c whole milk
10 chicken nuggets, cooked
1/2 c shredded Mozzarella
Pasta shells, cooked al dente


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a baking pan.

2. Melt butter in a pan over medium heat. Add onions and cook until tender, 5 minutes. Add garlic, Italian seasoning and chili flakes and cook for 1 minute.

3. Add tomatoes and milk and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

4. Add chicken tenders, Mozzarella and pasta and stir in combine. Pour into baking dish and bake 10 minutes, until bubbly.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Monday Night Football-Themed Mac and Cheese

Why do I call this MNF-themed Mac and Cheese? Cuz it's inspired by Frank's RedHot Buffalo Chicken Dip! That's right, this is comfort food Tailgate-style! It's basically just the dip recipe, which was the perfect cheese-sauce consistency when you add a touch more dressing. INCREDIBLY flavorful and PERFECT for football-watching!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Try This If You THINK You Don't Like Satay!

My hubby has always claimed he doesn't like Satay cuz he doesn't like peanut butter. Well, I'm not a big fan of PB either (I know we're weird!) but I sure like Satay and I wanted to prove that he would too. So like any wifey on a mission, I created this recipe for Meatballs in Satay-style Coconut-Peanut Sauce and served them over his favorite rice noodles. The verdict? He LOVED it! Guess he like Satay afer all!


1/2 lb ground pork
1 Tbsp hoisin sauce
1/4 c Panko breadcrumbs
1 egg yolk 1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1/2 tsp sesame oil


1 Tbsp oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
6 red dried chilies
1 c coconut milk
1/2 c beef broth
2 Tbsp hoisin sauce
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1 Tbsp peanut butter
1 Tbsp sugar
Rice noodles, for serving
Green onions, for garnish


1. Combine all meatball ingredients in a bowl and roll into 8 1-inch meatballs. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add meatballs and brown on all sides. Remove and set aside.

2. Add garlic, ginger and chilies and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Stir in coconut milk, broth, hoisin, fish sauce, peanut butter and sugar and bring  mixture to a boil.

3. Add meatballs back and turn heat down to low. Cover and simmer until meatballs are cooked through, 15 minutes. Serve over rice noodles and garnish with green onions.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Impossibly EASY Leftover Pie!

Once I discovered how to make Impossibly Easy Pies using Bisquick, I was hooked! I mean, you can basically turn anything into a savory pie and tonight I made one using leftover Mexican Mac and Cheese. It was IMPOSSIBLY Easy and INCREDIBLY yummy!

Friday, September 14, 2012

We Always Keep Fudge Brownie Mix on Hand!

I LOVE making brownies and always keep a couple of boxes of our favorite Duncan Hines Chewy Mix on hand. So when I found this recipe for turning them into Oatmeal Cookies, I just couldn't resist! You'd never guess they were made from brownie mix but the chocolatey flavor definitely shined through. They taste incredibly decadent but not overly sweet even with the chocolate chips. I left out the nuts just in case any of my coworkers are allergic. You can never be too careful these days! They were gone in minutes!

A Creamy Start to the Weekend!

I've been meaning to make this Penne with Sausage and Cream for some time now and finally did it tonight. I was SO glad I did! I used Hot Italian Sausage and it went so well with the creamy sauce. I also tossed everything with shredded Mozzarella Cheese cuz well, everything's better with more cheese right? What a nice and creamy way to start the weekend!

A Perfect Combo of Chocolate and Espresso in Mini Muffin Form!

There's something just so perfect about the combination of Chocolate and Espresso so I KNEW I had to make these Cappuccino Mini Chip Muffins! Instead of Espresso Powder, I used a packet of Nescafe Vanilla Coffee since that was all I had around. These muffins turned out SO incredibly chocolatey and yummy! What a great way to start a Friday morning!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Using Up That Yellow Curry Paste!

I came across this recipe for Thai Karee Curry and remembered having some yellow curry paste in the fridge to use up. I left out the potatoes since I didn't have any and the dish took no time at all to cook! I love the combination of the spicy curry with the creamy coconut milk and the sugar along with the fish sauce added incredible flavor! I served the dish with good old rice noodles in keeping with the Thai theme and our kitchen smelled oh so authentic!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Lasagna with a Twist!

What do you do when you have left-over Marinara Sauce, Ricotta cheese AND some ground beef in the fridge? You make Lasagna with a Twist! Seriously, this tasted just like good old lasagna but of course much quicker especially since I skipped the layering part and just tossed everything together before baking it in the oven. (Hey, they all end up in the same place right?) What a comforting and easy meal!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Can't Get Enough of That Goat Cheese!

I LOVE Goat Cheese, especially the trios from Trader Joe's. Unfortunately my hubby doesn't like the plain flavor so I'm always looking for ways to cook with it. (The other 2 are Herbed and Pepper ones and they're REALLY good!) Tonight, I made some meatballs that were inspired by these Mediterranean ones from Kraft. I substituted Goat Cheese for the Feta and sour cream for the yogurt and left out the tomatoes and cucumbers since I didn't have any. I also heated the sauce so that it was thin enough to pour over the meatballs and served them with couscous. AMAZING and definitely a great use up the Goat Cheese!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Leftovers in Manicotti!

Whenever I made a pasta dish, I always make double or even triple the amount of the meat sauce. It's a great time-saver and I can just pop portions in the freezer for later. One of my favorite ways to use the sauce is inside stuffed pasta dishes like Jumbo Shells or tonight's Manicotti. All I have to do is reheat the sauce in the microwave and mix it with Ricotta and whatever shredded white cheese I have in the fridge like Mozzarella or Monterey Jack. It's super simple and really delicious! Sunday nights were meant for easy comfort food!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

It's Called Impossibly Easy for a Reason!

When I find a recipe titled Impossibly Easy Seafood Pie, I know I have to try it! I mean, afterall, pies are supposed to take forever to make right? Not this one since the topping is made from Bisquick, a girl's best friend! As for the seafood, I used Imitation Crabmeat, which is a favorite at our house and also substituted goat cheese for the cream cheese, which we also can't seem to get enough of! I couldn't have been happier with the result! The top was buttery and flakey and the filling was creamy and just delicious! What an easy and wonderful Saturday dinner!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Easy Mexican Dinner

For an easy dinner, I cooked up some macaroni and made a sauce out of canned tomatoes with chile and frozen chicken strips. For an extra kick, I added some chili powder and cumin and dinner couldn't have been easier! Of course, no Mexican meal can be complete without a dollop of sour cream and Mexican shredded cheese right?

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Yummy Creamy Pork and Apple

I came across this recipe for Braised Pork with Apple Cream Sauce and couldn't WANT to make it! I didn't have whole star anise so I used ground and also added some cinnamon and raisins for extra flavor. My hubby LOVED it and I can't complain myself! I mean, how can you go wrong with pork and apple AND cream right?

Monday, September 3, 2012

My EASY Version of Indian-flavored Chicken

When it comes to cooking, tradition is lost on me and I'm all about fast and tasty. So tonight, I made a very easy Indian-flavored chicken using cooked chicken strips and all the spices I can think of! The result? A VERY yummy and quick dinner to kick-start the week!


1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 c onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp grated ginger
1/2 lb cooked chicken, chopped
1/2 c plain yogurt
1 tsp brown sugar


1. In a small bowl, combine the cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, paprika, cardamom, cinnamon and cloves.

2. Heat the vegetable oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, 5 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute.

3. Add the chicken and spice mixture. Stir to coat the chicken and onions with the spice mixture. Heat through and remove from heat.

4. Stir in the yogurt and brown sugar and simmer for 5 minutes, until the sauce has thickened.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

It's a Pasta Revolution!

I recently ordered America's Test Kitchen's Pasta Revolution and couldn't wait to try out some of the recipes! The one that really caught my attention was the Chicken Parmesan Baked Pasta which calls for frozen breaded chicken tenders, which we always have in the freezer. The sauce is made from canned fire-roasted tomatoes and garlic, which I'm a big fan of for maximum flavor with minimal effort. The meal came out fantastic, not to mention super easy and a 1-pot wonder!


1 Tbsp olive oil
1 (14 oz) can Hunt's Fire-Roasted Tomatoes with Garlic
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 c shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 lb cooked chicken tenders, chopped into bite-sized pieces
Pasta, cooked until al dente


1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Grease a baking dish.

2. Heat the oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the tomatoes, Italian seasoning and red pepper flakes. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.

3. Stir in 3/4 c cheese, chicken and pasta.  Transfer to a baking dish and sprinkle with mozzarella and remaining cheese.

4. Bake 5 to 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...