Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Cheesy Cracker Ranch Chicken

This is a great change of pace for baked "fried" chicken.  I am sorry that there really is not a recipe just ingredients.  It is easy and good. 

Cheesy Cracker Ranch Chicken
chicken breasts or tenders
cheese cracker (Cheezits or Nibs)
prepared Ranch dressing

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Crush crackers and place in a bowl
Pour some ranch in a separate bowl
Roll the chicken in the ranch and then the crackers. *Do not over coat with the ranch.*
Place on a greased cookie sheet.
Continue unil you have the amount of chicken you want.

Spray tops of covered chicken with a small amount of cooking spray.
Bake for 20 -30 minutes (depending on the size of your chicken pieces) Until the chicken is done.

I used White Cheddar flavored Cheezits this time because they are my family's favorite.  It was good but the regular cheddar flavor is much more flavorful.
The only problem was the coating did not stay crisp after the leftovers were refrigerated.  That did not stop anyone. They gobbled them the next day.



Sunday, November 22, 2009

California Chowder

This is one of my all time favorite comfort foods.  Only the calories keep me from making it more often.  It does take a little bit of time, but well worth it.  This recipe makes a big batch, but the leftovers are ohhh so good!!

California Chowder
1 med onion, diced
1 1/2 cups celery, sliced
5 cups potatoes, peeled and diced
3 cups broccoli, chopped
5 cups carrots
3 cups cauliflower (optional)
Place veggies in a large stock pot and add enough water to cover the veggies.  Cook until tender, about 20 minutes.
In a separate pan:
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup flour
2 cans evaporated milk
1 1/2 tsp salt.
Melt butter and mix in flour until smooth.  Add milk and salt. Cook until thick and bubbly. Pour mixture into veggie and water. Stir until smooth.
Add:
1 1/2 Tbsp. vinegar
1 (12 oz.) Velveeta Cheese
salt and pepper to taste
Stir until smooth. Serve with French bread and or crackers.

*I substituted 3 cups milk for the evaporated milk this time.  It turned out just fine.
I also used 2 cups carrots and 3 cups cauliflower, because my hubby doesn't like cooked carrots.  So I try to get a few in anyway, just not overdue it for him.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Easy Cream Cheese Danish

I had not made this recipe is a really long time and don't really know why. It is actually really simple and does not look like it. My type of recipe. The kids were so excited to actually have dessert. Don't look at how awful my baking stone looks. It is quite embarrassing! The crescent rolls did not come out of the packaging very well. I had to piece together a couple of triangles and the spokes were harder to create because of that. It still tasted good though.


Easy Cream Cheese Danish
2 packages of refrigerated crescent rolls
1- 8 oz. package cream cheese
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 can pie filling
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread 12 triangles of rolls into a circle on a baking stone or pan.



Make a three inch hole in the center. Roll up the center and outer edges to make a small border.



Mix cream cheese, sugar, egg and vanilla until smooth. Spread over the dough to with in 1/4 inch of the edge.

Top with pie filling.

Cut the last four crescent triangles each into 3 pieces.

Arrange pieces in a spoke like fashion on the top. Press ends to seal.



Bake 25-30 minutes until lightly brown.



Then mix:

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 Tbsp. melted butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2-3 tsp. milk
Mix until sugar is dissolved and it is smooth. Drizzle on the top of danish.
Let frosting set up and Enjoy!!


I used the silver end of the crescent roll packaging to cut the center hole. Then I rolled up the ends.
I also made my pie filling with some blueberries we picked this summer.

This recipe is linked with Foodie Friday and  Recipe Swap.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Sweet Salsa Chicken

This is a great throw in the crock pot meal.  It is so easy and taste great.  My kids do not like apricot jam but love this recipe.  I always use the apricot/pineapple jam.

Sweet Salsa Chicken
1 package taco seasoning mix
18 oz. jar apricot or apricot/pineapple jam
1 pint (2 cups) salsa
2-3 lbs chicken pieces ( I use chicken breast or tenders and guesstimate the amount.)
Place chicken in the bottom of crock pot. Sprinkle with the taco seasoning.

Pour salsa over the top.
                                                

Add the jam.


Cook on low until chicken is done. (4-6 hours).  Stir once or twice during cooking.  Serve over rice. 

*This time I used 12 chicken tenders and should of used more.  There was too much sauce and not enough chicken.

*You can also bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Turn chicken to coat.
*This is also a good freezer meal. Dump all ingredient into a freezer bag and freeze.

This recipe is linked with Crock Pot Wednesdays. Check out other great crock pot recipes.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Triple Layer Mint Brownies

I first had a similar version to this brownie while at BYU Women's Conference a few years ago with some great friends.  They showed us a video that promoted the "famous" BYU brownie.  We caved and the four of us shared one brownie.  I was excited when I found this recipe.  Not only do they taste great, but bring back great memories.  The mint layer at BYU and in the recipe was colored green.  The first time I made these I did not have any green food coloring so I used blue.  It has just stuck and plus it is my favorite color. These brownies get better with age.  24 hours in the fridge make them even better.


Triple Layer Mint Brownie
Layer 1:
1 package brownie mix: bake as directed and cool.

Layer 2: Mint Frosting
1/2 cup butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
2-3 Tbsp. milk
1/2 tsp. mint extract
green or blue food coloring

Mix butter and powdered sugar. Add only enough milk to make a smooth consistency.  Add mint extract and enough food coloring for desired color. Frosting will be thick. Spread over brownie layer. Refrigerate until firm.

Layer 3: Chocolate Topping
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup powdered sugar

Melt chocolate chips and butter in microwave for 2-3 minutes. Stir well to combine.  Add vanilla and powdered sugar.  Mix well.  Pour over frosted brownies, covering frosting completely.  Refrigerate until topping is set and hardened.  Cut into individual servings. 


They seem to taste better when stored in the fridge.  Someone ate one before I could get a picture!!

Check out what others are cooking at Tempt My Tummy Tuesday and Tuesdays at the Table.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

I apologize for the lack of posts last week. It was fun having my sister visit, but I had forgotten how busy 19 year olds like to be.  I tried hard to find things to do that she would like.  Unfortunately, because of this we ate at restaurants a few too many times.  I did discover how much I like The Cheesecake Factory.  It was really good and something I do not do everyday.  The week went really fast and I was sad to see her leave.  So I guess I must get back to real life and a menu plan is a must.  So here's what is planned for this week:

Monday: California Chowder
Tuesday: Cheese Cracker Ranch Chicken
Wednesday: Tacos
Thursday: Picnic Night
Friday: Pasta Roll-Ups
Saturday: Another travel day for a Cross Country Meet.
Sunday: Oven Baked Stew (My goal is to finally make this.)
I do have a few recipes that I made last week that I am excited to share.

See what others are having this week at The Organizing Junkie.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Pasghetti Pizza

I have no idea where the name of this recipe came from but it works and I like it.  The first time I ate this pizza I must admit I did not realize the crust was spaghetti.  It tasted so good.  I had not made it in a long time.  The girls turned up their noses when I told them what I was making for dinner.  Once they tried it all opinions changed.  My picky eater had 3 slices and then ate it for breakfast the next morning.  It is a fun change.

Pasghetti Pizza
CRUST:
1 -16 oz. package spaghetti
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
3/4 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. salt

Break spaghetti into thirds.  Cook in a large pan, drain and cool.  In a large bowl beat eggs slightly. Stir in milk, cheese, garlic salt and salt.  Add cooked spaghetti and stir until well combined.  Grease a cookie sheet and spread mixture in it.  Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven.


TOPPINGS:
1 jar of spaghetti sauce
3 cups Mozzarella cheese
Sliced pepperoni, cooked hamburger, sausage
mushrooms
olives
Use whatever toppings you like on pizza.  Just a hint though: when thinking of toppings use what goes well with spaghetti. From experience ham and pineapple do not fit in this category!!


Spread sauce evenly over the crust.

 Sprinkle cheese, meat and toppings on the top. Return to oven and bake 15-20 minutes until heated through. Let stand 5 minutes. Cut and serve.

As I was making this I thought it would be great made with veggie toppings.  I might also try an alfredo suace next time.

This recipe is linked with Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

It was a really CRAZY weekend and I am very slow at getting my menu together.  I actually thought through this weeks meals while working out this morning.  That is how crazy I feel.  At least I got the workout in and there has got to be bonus points for the multitasking right! (The story of all our lives.)   Now I am attempting to get my house cleaned and in order because my sister is flying in today for a visit this week.  It will be so fun to have her here.  Hopefully, I planned meals that she likes. 



This Weeks Menu
Monday: Pizza Pasta (from the freezer).
Tuesday: Tacos
Wednesday: Sweet Salsa Chicken
Thursday: Picnic Night
Friday: Calzones
Saturday: Dad Cooks
Sunday: Baked Stew (Carried over from last week).

I also have to prepare a dessert for the end of the year Cross Country Banquet on Thursday.  Does anyone have any great ideas??

Check out some great menus at The Organizing Junkie.

Have a wonderful week!!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Cheesy Enchiladas

This recipe of cheese enchiladas is a hit at our house.  The cream cheese adds a little twist and gives it a bit more flavor.  My daughter loves to make fresh salsa. So we topped them off with fresh Pomegranate Salsa that she made.


Cheesy Enchiladas
4 cups shredded cheese
1 8oz. package cream cheese, softened
2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 cup onions, minced
tortillas, use what ever kind you like. (I made 10)
Enchilada Sauce
1/2 to 1 cup more shredded cheese.

Mix 4 cups cheese, cream cheese, garlic powder and onions together.  It will be the texture of stiff playdough.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Coat bottom of a 9 x 13 casserole dish with a bit of sauce. 
With your hand grab about 2 Tbs. of the cheese mixture and form it into a log shape.

 Roll tortilla around the log and place in the pan.

Repeat for the rest of the tortillas.


Pour the remaining sauce over the top, spreading to cover.
Sprinkle with 1/2 to 1 cup of shredded cheese over the top. 

Cover and bake for 20 minutes. Take off the cover and bake for 10 more minutes or until hot and bubbly.



This also is a good freezer meal.
My tortillas from Costco were to big for the pan.  I had to cut off a small portion of the end. 
I used about 1 lb. of  shredded cheese.

This recipe is linked to Recipe Swap and Foodie Friday.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Chili & We're Eating What For Dinner????

I made chili for dinner last night.  I wish I had a magical recipe but I don't.  It is one of those dishes that I just dump things in the crock pot.  Sometimes it is amazing and other times not.  Last night it was just OK.  The best part of this meal is the story that goes with it.  So please indulge me for just a moment.
We're eating what for dinner?
That was a question my siblings and I asked my mom years ago, when she told us we were having garbage for dinner.  We looked at eachother and wondered if we had really heard her correctly.  Mom was a great cook and tonight she was feeding us "garbage".  Little did we realize, a great meal was really what she had in store for us.  It turned into a regular meal and now a family tradition that continues on with my own family.  It is the only way we eat chili at our house.  Now I want to share it with all of you.
Garbage
Chili
add to each serving:
tortilla chips, crushed slightly
shredded cheddar cheese
sour cream



It is amazing how the addition of just these few ingredients makes the chili so good and a little different twist.  The kids love how they can add as much of each ingredient that they want.
So now imagine the looks you'll get when you tell people you ate "garbage" for dinner!!


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Chicken and Potato Bake

This recipe is simple and tastes great.  It originally came from Kraft but I have added my own touch to it over time. 

Chicken and Potato Bake
3-4 chicken breasts (or chicken tenders)
5 medium potatoes, sliced
1/2 cup Italian dressing
1/2 cup lemon lime soda
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
Place potatoes in the bottom of a 9 x13 casserole dish.  Place chicken on top of potatoes. Pour dressing and soda over top. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese.  Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour until chicken is cooked through.  Time will depend on how thick your chicken is.  Take out of the oven and sprinkle with cheddar cheese and return to oven until the cheese is melted.
Optional:  You can add 1/4 cup diced onions (mix with the potato layer on the bottom).
I like to marinate my chicken in the fridge for a few hours, in a baggie with the dressing and soda mixture.  Then I just pour it over the top.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

I survived Halloween and I must admit it really wasn't that bad.  For those of you who know me probably know my history on dreading Halloween.  It is not my favorite holiday.  My oldest and some friends took the kids trick or treating while I answered the door and listened to my husband snore. ( I like that rhyme.) He is convinced the doorbell only rang three times, even though the big bowl of candy is pretty much gone.  Oh well not worth the battle.  My girly girl dressed up like a boy and really did look the part.  It was pretty funny! 
On  Halloween my son qualified for the State Cross Country Meet so I have a couple less meals to plan.  It is exciting but I feel my menu this week is less than exciting.. I may have to vamp it up a bit! HA HA. Did you get that pun? Maybe I am getting a better Halloween attitude after all!!

This Weeks Menu
Monday: Cheese Enchiladas with homemade sauce.
Tuesday: Sweet and Sour Chicken
Wednsday: Chili
Thursday: Picnic Night
Friday: Off to the State Meet
Saturday: State Meet...GO Kody!!
Sunday: Baked Stew

Have a great week everyone!!

You can check out other great menus at I'm an Organizing Junkie.

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