Monday, April 26, 2010

Baked Pineapple, Berry Trifle, Artichoke Bread....Put the burgers on the pit!

Sunday all the scouts had a much needed day off after a weekend of draft events so Jon threw a few burgers on the pit and we had ourselves a little party.  What a fabulous time!  It's always good to see the guys that live away from Foxboro.

Here are a few recipes that are old favorites of mine and a new one that is now on the top of my list.  Lets start with the new one....Artichoke bread.  Oh my word it is unbelievable!!!!  Jon put some sausages on the pit and I cut up this bread to have as apps.  I couldn't keep my hand out of the platter.  I can't wait to make it again!  Thanks Mandi for, yet again, another great recipe!!!!

Artichoke Bread
1/4 cup butter
4 garlic cloves, pressed
1 (14 oz) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
4 oz shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
2 oz shredded cheddar cheese
1 french bread
salt & pepper to taste or Tony's
  1. Preheat oven to 350.  Melt butter and add garlic, cook about 30 seconds.  Add artichoke, Monterey Jack cheese, parmesan cheese, and sour cream.  Stir to blend, remove from heat and cool.
  2. Slice bread lengthwise and scoop out some of the center.  Crumble the pieces of bread and add to the mixture.  Spoon the artichoke mixture on the bread and sprinkle with the cheddar cheese.  Place each half on the baking sheet and cover lightly with aluminum foil.  Bake for 25 minutes then remove foil and bake for another 5-8 minutes until the cheese melts completely.  Cut into slices and serve warm.

Baked Pineapple
2 (20 oz) cans chunk pineapple, drained (I may use 3 cans next time.)
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 cup medium shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups Ritz crackers, crushed
1 stick margarine

Place pineapple in baking dish.  Mix flour and sugar and spread over pineapple.  Spread cheese over pineapple.  Melt margarine and mix with Ritz crackers.  Spread over top.  Bake at 325 for 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

Berry Low Fat Trifle
1 pkg (9 oz) angel food cake
3 TBSP orange juice
1/4 tsp almond extract
2 1/2 cups fat free milk
2 pkg (4 serving size each) Vanilla instant pudding
1 1/2 cups thawed Lite Cool Whip, divided
2 pkg (12 oz each) frozed mixed berries, thawed, well drained (about 4 cups frozen or 2 1/2 cups thawed berries)
  1. Cut cake into cubes; place in large bowl.  Combine OJ and almond extract.  Drizzle over cake cubes; toss lightly.
  2. Pour milk into another large bowl.  Add dry pudding mixes.  Beat with wire whisk 2 minutes or until well blended.  Gently stir in 1 cup of the whipped topping.
  3. Layer half the cake cubes in bottom of trifle bowl.  Reserve a few berries for garnish.  Top with layers of half each of the remaining berries and pudding mixture.  Repeat layers.  cover with plastic wrap.  Refrigerate 2 to 6 hours before serving.  Top with remaining 1/2 cup whipped topping and reserved berries just before serving.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Chocolate Cream Cheese Filled Cupcakes

OMG.....these cupcakes are so good!  Especially when you're a cream cheese lover like we are in our family.  I know what I'm making for our next bake sale at school!

I got this recipe from Brandi....blogger of From My Kitchen to Yours.  Check out her blog for wonderful recipes!  I have a list of them already to try!!!!

Cream cheese filling:
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1/8 tsp salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Ingredients for Cupcakes:
3 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2/3 cup cocoa powder
2 tsps baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups water
2/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tbsp white vinegar
2 tsp vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350.  Line a muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar, egg, and salt until smooth and creamy.  Stir in the chocolate chips and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.  Add the water, oil, vinegar, and vanilla.  Beat on medium speed for two minutes.
  4. Fill the muffin tins 1/2 full and then add on level TBSP of the filling into the center of each cup.  Bake 20-25 minutes.
It makes approx 30 cupcakes.

Sweetheart Salad

I love, love, love this salad.  The dressing makes a lot so you can either half it or save the other half for another time.  Super easy!

6 TBS. Honey
1 Tsp. mustard (yellow)
1 cup oil
1 tsp. salt
1tsp. paprika
4 Tbsp. Vinegar

-Whisk together or put in a salad shaker

1 Bag of Salad greens or spinach
1/2 cup Cashews or almonds (or more if you like more nuts)
1 can Mandarin Oranges drained or Sliced Strawberries

-Toss greens, nuts and fruit.
-Toss with the dressing right before serving

Bacon N Veggie Pasta

I've turned into such a pasta lover.  I have no clue why!  This is another that is really good.  I paired it with a Sweetheart salad and it was a nice, easy meal.

2 cans stewed tomatoes
2 cups brocolli florets
2 medium carrots, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp dried basil
4 bacon strips, diced (I used 5 pieces of turkey bacon)
 1/2 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/3 cup chopped green pepper
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
16 ounces uncooked medium shell pasta
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  1. In a large saucepan, combine the first seven ingredients.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until brocolli and carrots are tender.
  2. In a skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp.  Remove to paper towels; drain, reserving 1 TBSP drippings. (Since I used turkey bacon, I didn't get a lot of drippings so I added a little olive oil to the pan.)  In the drippings, saute the mushrooms, green pepper, onion and garlic until tender;  add to tomato mixture and heat through.  Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions.  Drain and place in a serving bowl; top with vegetable mixture.  Sprinkle with bacon and Parmesan cheese.

Cheddar Macaroni Beef Casserole

This recipe is super kid-friendly!  Taylor and her friends loved this for did I!

1 pkg Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Dinner
1 lb lean ground beef (I used turkey)
1 can Italian style stewed tomatoes, undrained
1/2 tsp dried oregano or basil
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 400.  Prepare macaroni in large saucepan as directed on package, omitting butter.  Meanwhile, brown meat in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat; drain.  Add tomatoes and oregano; mix well.  Bring to a boil.
  2. Add meat mixture to dinner; spoon into 9 inch square baking dish.  Sprinkle with cheese.
  3. Bake 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and casserole is heated through.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Italian White Bean and Spinach Soup

It was pretty chilly here in Wrentham, MA so instead of a nice Spring meal I decided to stick with a nice warm soup and a good panini.  At first Jon and I swore we would be hungry an hour after eating it because it was so light but it's really filling.  The sandwich helped in that department too.  For the sandwich I did pancetta with mozzerella and a tomato slice with a sprinkle of Italian seasoning.  My new favorite salad is fresh mozzerella and tomato with balsamic vinigerette.  At first I didn't understand why a slice of tomato and cheese would be good but a friend of mine made me try it for my birthday and I've been hooked ever since. :-)

1 (1 oz) package of dried shiltake mushrooms (I used a package of fresh shiltake mushrooms and it was fine.)
2 cups boiling water
2 tsps olive oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups chopped fresh spinach (I used escarole since Jon isn't a spinach fan.)
1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 (16 oz) can cannellini beans, or other white beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14 oz) can vegetable broth
Fresh thyme (optional)
Crushed red pepper (optional)
  1. Combine mushrooms and 2 cups boiling water in a bowl; cover and let stand 15 minutes.  Drain mushrooms in a colander over a bowl, reserving liquid.  Chop mushrooms; set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat.  Add onion, garlic, and mushrooms to pan; saute 5 minutes or until tender.  Add the reserved mushroom liquid, spinach, and next 5 ingredients; bring to a boil.  Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes.  Garnish with thyme and red pepper.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Quick and Easy Banana Bread

This is such a great recipe.  Only 6 staple ingredients and have yourself some yummy banana bread on a chilly, rainy Saturday. :-)

1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup ripe mashed bananas (approx 3 bananas)
1 tsp baking soda
2 cups flour
  1. Preheat oven to 350.  Grease and flour a 9x5 loaf pan.
  2. Cream butter and sugar until smooth.  Beat in eggs, then bananas.  Add flour and soda, stirring until just combined.
  3. Pour into pan and bake at 350 for about an hour or until toothpick comes out clean.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Turkey Macaroni

Are you surprised when I say this is from my Fix it and Forget it Lightly cookbook???  I'm always on the go with the girls so when I plan my meals I almost always have at least one crockpot recipe.  It's just so easy to throw the ingredients in the crockpot in the morning and not to mention the smell when I walk in the house after being gone for hours.  Love it!!!!

1 tsp vegetable oil (I omitted)
1 1/2 lbs ground turkey
2 (10 3/4 oz) cans condensed low sodium tomato soup, undiluted
16 oz can corn, drained
1/2 cup onions, chopped
4 oz can sliced mushrooms, drained
2 TBSP ketchup
1 TBSP prepared mustard
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
2 cups dry macaroni, cooked and drained
  1. Heat oil in medium skillet.  Brown turkey.  Drain.
  2. Combine all ingredients except macaroni in slow cooker.  Stir to blend.  Cover.
  3. Cook on high 3-4 hours or on low 4-6 hours.  Stir in cooked and drained macaroni 15 minutes before serving.

Chicken Enchilada Casserole

Here's another Holly Clegg recipe that is pretty darn tasty.  This one is also freezable and she says that there is no need to bake before freezing.  How easy is that!

1/2 cup chopped onion
1 TBSP minced garlic
1 (14 1/2 oz) can diced tomatoes, drained
1/2 cup thinkly sliced green onions, divided
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chilies, drained
3 cups cooked chicken breasts chunks
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 (12 oz) can evaporated skimmed milk
1/2 cup canned fat free chicken broth
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
6 (6 in) flour tortillas, quartered
1 cup shredded reduced fat Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup shredded reduced fat Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350.  In a skillet coated with nonstick cooking spray, saute onion and garlic until tender.  Add tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and cook for 10 minutes.  Add 1/4 cup green onions, green chilies, and chicken, stirring until mixed.  In a saucepan, place flour and gradually add milk.  Heat over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture is thickened and bubbly.  Add broth, chili powder, and cumin.  In a 2 1/2 quart round dish, spread 1/2 cup sauce.  Layer tortillas, chicken mixture, sauce, and cheeses.  Repeat layers twice.  Bake for 40 minutes or until heated thoroughly.  Sprinkle with remaining green onions before serving.