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Thursday, September 30, 2010

fast dessert...only 1 recipe

Really quick....need a dessert that doesn't take a lot of time?? Here you go:

Chocolate graham cracker pie crust
LARGE package of INSTANT chocolate pudding (do not use the kind you have to cook!)

Mix pudding per directions for pi (2.5 cups of milk instead of 3, I believe), pour into choc. pie crust, cover and chill.

That's it!

Serve with whipped cream if desired....we don't let our kids have the whipped cream since they have enough sugar in the pudding and crust....well....not when they are having it as a snack before bed.....and even our 10yo can make this...7yo probably could too, but she says the bowl is too heavy for her to hold and

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

how's it going?

So....I did some quick posting yesterday and will continue to look for recipes in my free time. There are also recipes in my February posts.

I'd love to get some feedback if you use any of the recipes - particularly YOU,

If anybody has any recipes that don't take all day, are yummy, and can boost your image in the kitchen, please go ahead and post them here or in your comments.

Today it's all about catching up with housework, so I will be back later this week or next week.

Monday, September 27, 2010

more easy meals

Crunchy Taco Salad

1 lb ground beef or turkey (buy what is on sale, with the seasoning, you can't tell the difference!)
tortilla chips (or doritos!)
chili beans in chili sauce OR taco seasoning

Brown beef/turkey and drain. Stir in chili beans or taco seasoning and water and simmer about 10 minutes. Divide lettuce into 4 servings and spoon a portion of the meat on top. Top meat with salsa, tomato (and cheddar cheese, green onion, and sour cream if you prefer), crumble tortilla chips (or doritos) over each salad.

Beef fried rice

Remember that left-over pot roast???

Shred pot roast leftovers. Cook and chill rice (depending on the number of servings you need). Heat beef in skillet lightly coated with oil (olive or vegetable or whatever you prefer), and add soy sauce to taste. Stir in cold rice, and whatever vegetables you h ave on hand (yes, I use leftover veggies in this all the time). If you don't have leftover veggies, grate a carrot and dice a small amount of onion. Heat thoroughly and serve.

Balsamic chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 onion, sliced (or more if you prefer)
balsamic vinegar
olive oil

Heat oil in skillet and add chicken breasts and balsamic vinegar. Cook chicken thoroughly. When chicken is done cooking remove from skillet and set aside. Add onions to skillet and saute until tender. Add chicken back to pan and re-heat. Serve with rice or pasta and a veggie.

Turkey-Broccoli Casserole (great for Thanksgiving leftovers!)

2 10oz packages of frozen broccoli
2 cups coarsely chopped cooked turkey
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup milk
grated cheddar cheese

We cook our broccoli before making this because the first time I followed the recipe exactly, the broccoli wasn't cooked all the way...might have been the old oven, but still...ick!

So...cook broccoli (or at least heat thoroughly!). Preheat oven to 375. Layer broccoli in a 12x8 inch baking dish. Spread turkey evenly over broccoli. Mix soup with milk until smooth and pour over turkey. Sprinkle grated cheese on top and bake for 30 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Chicken with beans and rice

If you have leftover chicken, this will make good use of it! We sometimes have a whole roast chicken as a meal, and this is one way I use the leftovers so that we don't get bored.

Leftover chicken
Zataran's family size red beans and rice or black beans and rice

Cook beans and rice as directed, adding diced, cooked chicken as it is approaching a boil (really, as soon as you have the rice, water, and spices in the pot, start adding the chicken). Once all the chicken is added (use as much as you like), cover and cook as directed on the rice and bean package.

This is a fairly fast and filling meal. My children are fairly picky eaters and both of them love this!

Shrimp and fries

Another fast and easy (and inexpensive) meal....not gourmet, but better than fast food!

Pre-cooked, de-veined, peeled shrimp or easy-peel shrimp
french fries or tater tots

Cook shrimp until pink (or simply re-heat if they are pre-cooked). Meanwhile, cook fries or tots as directed on package. Serve with salad.

*if the shrimp are easy peel, I would suggest thawing them before tossing them into the water...makes it a LOT easier on your hands if you are peeling them cool instead of boiling hot - my kids freak out if they have to peel their shrimp...go figure .

3 Easy and yummy meals

Ok, for my friends who want to actually cook meals instead of microwaving them....or who don't cook at all but want to start, here are some of the ones that I use on our hectic nights:

Ravioli with tomato sauce, salad, bread

Buy store-brand meat ravioli and cook as directed (I say store-brand because it tends to not be as spicy as name brands and costs less....I can't have spicy food)
Buy your favorite tomato/pasta sauce and heat over low while ravioli cooks
Make a fresh salad - or buy the bagged salad mixes which is what I do in the fall/winter months
Use regular bread with butter and a little garlic salt (if you prefer), or have rolls or biscuits (yes, I use the canned most often)

Roast beef/pot roast

If you have a slow cooker, this is a definite plus, but there are several oven-bake options as well (roasting bag and seasonings already packaged together - we've found that these have a lot of salt, however).

I tend to get a 4 pound roast, which yields enough for a pot roast dinner with leftovers to make beef fried rice and maybe a few other meals.

Thaw roast
Place roast in slow cooker with a small amount of water, Worcestershire sauce, onions (quartered) or else use dried minced onions, and whatever seasonings you like
Turn on low cook for 8+ hours, cover, and walk away.

By the time you get done with your workday, your house will smell wonderful and you will have your dinner nearly ready. Nearly because, of course, you need a vegetable or 2 to go with the roast.

Shrimp Scampi

Shrimp (either precooked, deveined and peeled, or uncooked will work)
garlic (or dried minced garlic)
olive oil
chicken broth (or white wine)
thin pasta noodles
Parmesan cheese

Heat a small amount of the oil in a skillet and saute the garlic. Add shrimp and cook until done. If using pre-cooked shrimp, heat thoroughly. Meanwhile, cook pasta until tender. Drain pasta, add shrimp (in oil and garlic) and toss. Serve and top with a squirt of lemon (if desired) and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.

Getting it all together

Wow, it's been nearly 2 months since my last post....I'm going to start making notes on my schedule to post at least every other week.

A friend of mine from our "Mothers of PreSchoolers" days mentioned how she didn't understand how some people could turn out gourmet meals......she doesn't really cook, you guessed

I will be posting over the next few weeks (I hope) some recipes that don't take a lot of knowledge or time, and don't require any special equipment (I don't consider a slow cooker special equipment, but you might). All of the recipes will be fairly inexpensive, easy to make, filling, and ones that will try to increase your cooking confidence ( impressed with yourself will you be if you go from not really cooking to making shrimp scampi and have it taste like it was made in an upscale restaurant??!!).

Please give me your feedback and post any of your favorite recipes as well!