Friday, November 30, 2007

White Turkey Chili

I have to say this was not very good. Two problems: 1) I used too much broth and water because I started with dried beans and not canned; 2) I don't think the recipe was very good. I should have looked around for a better recipe. I guess the flavor was okay but it was too thin and definitely not a chili consistency. It was more like a TexMex soup instead.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Pizza and Salad

Pagliacci pizza delivery tonight.

I had a substantial bowl of salad (love their green salad), and two pieces of pizza. The one shown here is their Spinaci Primo (spinach, tomato, cheese - can't remember what kind - and garlic). I also had their Pear Primo that has pears, walnuts, gorgonzola, and red onions. Both are yummy pizzas.

I was going to make chicken but I felt like absolute crap when I got home so I didn't want to cook.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Pasta with Ground Beef, Broccoli, and Garlic Bread

Sort of uninspired but it filled our bellies.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Turkey Bake

STOVE TOP Easy Turkey Bake

Recipe from Kraft
Prep Time: 10 min
Total Time: 40 min
6 servings, about 1-1/3 cups each

1-2/3 cups hot water
1 pkg. (6 oz.) STOVE TOP Stuffing Mix for Turkey
4 cups chopped cooked turkey
1 bag (14 oz.) frozen broccoli florets, thawed, drained
1 can (10-3/4 oz.) condensed cream of chicken soup
3/4 cup milk
1-1/2 cups KRAFT Shredded Cheddar Cheese
PREHEAT oven to 350°F. Add hot water to stuffing mix; stir just until moistened. Set aside.

MIX turkey and broccoli in 13x9-inch baking dish. Combine soup, milk and cheese; pour over turkey mixture. Top with prepared stuffing.

BAKE 30 min. or until heated through.


So here was my mistake - I didn't thaw the broccoli before cooking. I ended up cooking it for 40 minutes plus it was a little watery (and a little cool in the middle). D'oh. It was pretty good, though, and a great way to use up leftover turkey and stuffing (I did not use Stove Top)!

Here's what it looked like on my plate:

Monday, November 26, 2007

Turkey Noodle Soup

After cooking the turkey on Friday I made stock with the bones and some vegetables all day Saturday. This is what it looked like when it was simmering on the stove:

This is after the solids have been drained away:

Finally, the end product. I used wheat egg noodles to make it more nutritious.

It was yummy and, since I am not feeling well, it hit the spot.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

My Husband's Birthday Dinner

I made a stuffed pork loin and we reheated the green bean casserole from Friday. Stuffing meat is always such a pain in the ass that, in my opinion, is only marginally worth any reward. Certainly I could have cooked a pork loin roast and had stuffing on the side with similar, if not identical, results.

I did, however, make carrot cake from scratch for my husband's birthday (his request). It was very good and very rich!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Tuna Casserole

Tired of turkey, I made tuna casserole tonight. It's very easy and it's the way my mom has made it since I was a kid. It's probably the way her mom made it.

Tuna Casserole
16 oz. wide egg noodles
10 3/4 oz. can cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cups of frozen peas
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Boil noodles and preheat oven to 350. Drain and combine with soup, milk, and peas. Put into a casserole dish. Top with shredded cheese. Heat in the oven for about 20 minutes or so, until warmed through and the cheese is melted.


Friday, November 23, 2007

My Thanksgiving!

Yesterday was my mom's Thanksgiving. Tonight I wanted to make my own turkey, mostly because I wanted leftovers.

I'm not much of a meat carver so my husband carved the turkey for me. He did a fantastic job! This meat was so moist and lovely. I got a glatt kosher bird from Trader Joe's (I think they're really Rubashkin Aaron's Best). I would have to say this is probably one of the best turkeys I've ever had. It was very flavorful.

I also made the classic green bean casserole:

And stuffing. Yes, it was out of a box. But it was from Trader Joe's which I think makes it at least a little better.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Pumpkin Pies

I told my parents I'd bring the dessert for Thanksgiving dinner tonight. Of course that means pumpkin pie. I always think of it as a daunting task but, really, it's not so bad.

The dry ingredients (sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and clove):

Two of the wet ingredients (pumpkin and egg):

The pies, uncooked, waiting to go into the oven:

Now the pies are out of the oven and cooling. I can't wait to eat them!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Day Before Thanksgiving Chinese Food Fest

Tonight we had a homemade Chinese Food Fest. It was really good. I didn't make anything from scratch except for the chicken (marinated in teriyaki sauce, browned on both sides then finished in the oven). It was good and a perfect tradition to start.

We had the following:
Chicken (as prepared above)
Stir Fry Vegetables
Egg Rolls

Perhaps next year I'll make the potstickers myself but it's kind of the point to have a meal that's easy to fix prior to the mother of all homemade meals: Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Pasta, Broccoli, and Garlic Bread

Tonight was an easy night. Pasta with ground beef, Barilla sauce, and grated parmesan. Steamed broccoli. Garlic bread from the store.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Tortilla Casserole

And here it is on the plate:

Tortilla Casserole


This recipe is courtesy of The Best 30-Minute Recipe. We like to use pre-shredded Mexican-blend cheese in this casserole since it's easy (and creamy), but any shredded cheddar cheese works fine.

Serves 4

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 onion , minced
3 cloves garlic , minced
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 (15.5-ounce) can pinto beans , rinsed
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes , drained
1 tablespoon minced canned chipotle chiles in adobo
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro leaves
Table salt and ground black pepper
5 cups tortilla chips (3 ounces)
2 cups shredded Mexican-style cheese (see note)

1. Heat oven, sauté aromatics, and make sauce: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 450 degrees. Heat oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add chicken broth and bring to simmer.

2. Add vegetables, chicken, and herbs: Stir beans, tomatoes, and chipotle into sauce and simmer until heated through, about 2 minutes. Stir in chicken, 3 tablespoons cilantro, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

3. Assemble Casserole: Spread 1 cup tortilla chips over bottom of 8-inch baking dish and top with 1 cup chicken mixture. Spread 2 more cups tortilla chips into dish and sprinkle with 1 cup cheese. Spread remaining chicken mixture into dish and top with remaining tortilla chips. Sprinkle remaining 1 cup cheese over top.

4. Bake: Bake until cheese is golden brown and casserole is bubbling, abut 10 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cilantro before serving.


Maybe the top was too hard because I used light cheese and not full fat cheese. It was good because it tasted like you were eating nachos. Also, it would be VERY easy to convert to vegetarian. I wouldn't drain the tomatoes, I'd use a little water or vegetable broth, and I'd add a can of black beans (and omit the chicken). I'm glad I used the blue corn chips because otherwise it'd just look like a pile of mush.

It says it serves four and that's a bit of a joke but in the other way this time. It could easily feed 6 and maybe 8 if there was a side salad.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Pasta with Roasted Butternut Squash and Shallots

Pasta with Roasted Butternut Squash and Shallots
By Cooking Light

3 cups (1-inch) cubed peeled butternut squash
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
8 shallots, peeled and halved lengthwise (about 1/2 pound)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh or 1 teaspoon dried rubbed sage
4 ounces uncooked pappardelle (wide ribbon pasta) or fettuccine
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 475°.
Combine the squash, sugar, 2 1/2 teaspoons oil, salt, pepper, and shallots in a jelly roll pan; toss well. Bake at 475° for 20 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in sage.

While the squash mixture bakes, cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain. Place cooked pasta in a bowl. Add 2 teaspoons oil; toss well. Serve the squash mixture over pasta. Sprinkle with cheese.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 3/4 cup pasta, 3/4 cup squash mixture, and 1 tablespoon cheese)

CALORIES 248 (29% from fat); FAT 7.9g (sat 2g,mono 4.5g,poly 0.8g); PROTEIN 7.1g; CHOLESTEROL 5mg; CALCIUM 137mg; SODIUM 713mg; FIBER 5.2g; IRON 1.4mg; CARBOHYDRATE 39.4g

Here's a picture of the squash and shallots in the bowl after they were mixed with the sage:

This was really good. Really, really good. I will definitely want to make this again!! (And no complaints about the lack of meat!) I did use 16 oz. of pasta simply because I have a lot of people to feed. There was pasta left with no squash mixture to put on it but the teenager ate that! 4 oz. of pasta to feed four people (as the recipe indicates) seems like unnecessary corner cutting to me.

The flavor of the shallots was a very nice counterpoint to the sweetness of the squash.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Lasagne, Caesar Salad, and Garlic Bread

Tonight's dinner was special for family since my parents came for Sophia's second birthday celebration. I made lasagne which in itself was fairly mundane (i.e. no gourmet ingredients). I did make my own sauce, though.

Marinara Sauce
1/2 cup olive oil
3 oz. pancetta, diced finely
1/4 cup shallots, diced finely
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 - 28 oz. cans of crushed tomatoes with basil
Pinch of oregano

Heat the olive oil in a dutch oven. Add the pancetta and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the shallot and cook for another minute; then add the garlic and heat until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and stir, bringing to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for an hour, stirring occasionally. Add oregano and pepper; serve.


Caesar salad is incredibly easy to make if you use prepared dressing! Same with garlic bread. One day I'll make everything from scratch but at family gatherings it's better to keep things as simple as possible.

We also made a cake from scratch. My husband decorated it but we were under a time crunch and devoid of caring too much about perfection so the result is a sweet homemade birthday cake.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Grilled Cheese, Pasta Salad, and Cucumber Slices

Tonight is my daughter's second birthday. I wanted to make something very kid-friendly for her and fun. So I made grilled cheese sandwiches, pasta salad with tomato, and cucumber slices. It went over very well! (Plus, for the adults, I used Beecher's Flagship Cheese! That was really good.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Chicken, Brussels Sprouts, and Rice

I rubbed the chicken with Tom Douglas' Spicy Tokyo Rub:

I then browned them in some canola oil and finished them in the oven.

The brussels sprouts were cooked in 1/2 cup of water with a little salt. They turned out pretty darned good!

Rice-a-Roni was Fried Rice flavor.

All in all, this dinner was good and it was nice to have a go at brussels sprouts. They were cooked well and aside from a bit of bitterness they were nice.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Penne and Chickpea Soup

Penne and Chickpea Soup
Courtesy of Cook's Illustrated

Serves 6 to 8 as a main course

1/4 cup olive oil
4 ounces bacon or pancetta, diced fine
4 medium cloves garlic , peeled and bruised
1 sprig fresh rosemary
2 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) diced tomatoes (about 2 cups), with liquid
2 cans (16-ounces each) chickpeas (about 3 cups), drained and rinsed, and 1 1/2 of the 3 cups mashed with a fork
2 teaspoons table salt , plus extra for seasoning
8 ounces penne pasta or other short pasta
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
Ground black pepper
Pecorino Romano cheese , freshly grated
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (optional)

Heat olive oil in large soup kettle or stockpot over medium heat. Add bacon or pancetta; sauté until browned, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and rosemary sprig; sauté until fragrant, about 2 minutes longer. Add tomatoes with their liquid, whole and mashed chickpeas, 6 cups water, and salt; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer to blend flavors, about 10 minutes. Add pasta; cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Remove rosemary sprig and add chopped rosemary; adjust seasoning with salt and ground black pepper, and serve, passing grated cheese and olive oil, if desired, separately.


My notes:
I used turkey bacon. I suppose you could use fake bacon or omit it but it did impart some flavor. At the end I found it plenty salty so didn't add more salt. Also, I'm not a HUGE fan of rosemary so I took the sprig out (some little pieces were still present) and did not add the tablespoon of chopped rosemary at the end. The penne I used was Ronzoni's Smart Taste penne which has extra fiber and calcium.

This soup was really good and very easy. I would definitely make it again.

I am trying to make more soups because my kids don't really like them but I'm a mean mom and am forcing it upon them. Mwahahahahaha.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Mesquite Pork Tenderloin, Vegetables, and Rice-a-Roni

Tonight's dinner was the epitome of easy. I made pork tenderloin that had already been marinated, heated up veggies, and made Rice-a-Roni. It was tasty, however.

Tomorrow I'll be more imaginative.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Pizza Night

Tonight we ordered pizza from one of our favorite pizza joints. Mushroom Primo and AGOG Primo plus pesto pasta salad. Yum!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Mario Pinch Hits

Tonight the husband and kids will be having Mario Batali's pasta as I previously wrote about. I, on the other hand, will be dining at one of Tom Douglas' restaurants, Lola tonight. Hooray!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Cheddar Bratwursts, Mac & Cheese, and Vegetables

Tonight's dinner was something easy and kid friendly. I cooked the cheddar bratwursts on the stove, made mac & cheese from a box, and heated up veggies in the oven. Not very creative, I know, but there you have it.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Easier Chicken and Dumplings

"Easier Chicken and Dumplings"
October/November Issue of Cook's Country
Serves 6-8

5 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, trimmed
5 tbsp. unsalted butter
4 carrots, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
1 large onion, chopped fine
1 tsp. salt
3 garlic cloves, minced
6 tbsp. all-purpose flour
3/4 cup dry sherry
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 1/2 cups frozen peas
4 tbsp. minced fresh parsley

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/3 cups heavy cream

1. For the stew:
Bring broth to simmer in Dutch oven over high heat. Add chicken and return to simmer. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until chicken is just cooked through, about 10 minutes. Transfer chicken to plate and tent loosely with aluminum foil. Transfer broth to large bowl.

2. Return empty Dutch oven to medium-high heat and melt butter. Add carrots, onion, and salt and cook until softened, about 7 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in flour and cook, stirring frequently, for 1 minute. Stir in sherry, scraping up browned bits. Stir in reserved brother, cream, thyme, bay leaves and papper and bring to boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer until stew thickens, about 20 minutes.

3. For the dumplings:
Stir flour, baking powder, and salt in large bowl. Stir in cream until incorporated (dough will be very thick and shaggy).

4. To finish:
Discard bay leaves and return stew to rapid simmer. Shred reserved chicken and add to stew along with any accumulated juices, peas, and 3 tablespoons parsley. Using 2 large soup spoons or small ice cream scoop, drop golf ball-sized dumplings onto stew about 1/4 inch apart (you should have 16-18 dumplings). Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook until dumplings have doubled in size, 15 to 18 minutes. Garnish with remaining parsley. Serve.

Make ahead:
Follow recipe through step 2, refrigerating stew and chicken in separate airtight containers up to 24 hours ahead. When ready to proceed, warm stew in Dutch oven and proceed with step 3.


My notes:

This was pretty labor intensive. I only got to relax at the end, once the dumplings were in the stew. I used half and half, not heavy cream, for the dumplings and whole milk for the stew itself since I didn't have heavy cream on hand. It was fine. Also, I didn't peel the carrots. I never do; it's too labor intensive plus the good stuff is in the skin.

Alex loved this dish. Baxter liked the dumplings. Sophia ate Goldfish crackers and raisins. :-/ Bill did like it as did I. Would I make it again? Absolutely.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Kashi's Pizza

I had Kashi's Mediterranean Pizza for dinner tonight. I actually had four pieces (half the pizza) and not just two. This pizza is very good and very filling! Normally if I made a pizza of this size I would want to eat all of it. I am satisfied with half. That's only about 450 calories (less) so not too bad! Although I did have a Coca-Cola hecho en Mexico. *grin*

I will definitely buy this pizza again!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Pork Chops, Mashed Potatoes, and Peas

Artery Clogging Pork Chops, Mashed Potatoes, and Peas

Pork Chops
4 boneless pork chops, 1" thick ("thicker 'n Texas")
Seasoning Salt (I used Johnny's)
1/4 cup butter
4 oz. can mushrooms, drained
10 3/4 oz. can cream of mushroom soup
Healthy splash of half and half (or milk)

Preheat the oven to 350. Melt the butter in a skillet. Liberally sprinkle the pork chops with seasoning salt. Add pork chops to the skillet and brown on each side, about 3 minutes per side. Put the pork chops into a 9x13 pan. Put the mushrooms and soup into the skillet to warm. Add the splash of half and half and stir all together until it is a consistent texture. Pour over the pork chops. Cover the 9x13 pan with foil and place in the oven for an hour.

These were very good! I added some mashed taters and peas and it was delicious.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


Tonight it was minestrone. Because it was made from dried beans it took over 2 hours to make. Therefore, Sophia and Baxter had Spongebob Mac & Cheese instead.

Anyway, this minestrone came from my brother and his girlfriend last Xmas. I figured it was high time to finally make it. It was pretty good! I didn't have Italian sausage (*gasp*! I've run out!) so it was meatless. (Would've been vegetarian except for the beef bouillon cubes...)

Here's the recipe. It's kind of weird and disjointed but it's good.

Minestrone Soup Mix

1/4 cup dried split peas
1/2 cup dried kidney beans
4 crumbled beef bouillon cubes
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
1 cup elbow macaroni

Combine the peas, bouillon, beans and spices in a bowl. Stir to blend and store in an airtight container. Place macaroni in an airtight container. Containers can be added to a basket with a bottle of Italian red wine, a chunk of Parmigiana cheese, and a loaf of crusty Italian bread.

Minestrone (serves 8-10): 8 cups water, 1 package minestrone soup mix, 1 pound sweet Italian sausage, 2 carrots peeled and chopped, 2 ribs celery chopped, 1/2 cup chopped onion, 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes, 1 cup elbow macaroni. Place water into a large stockpot. Add the minestrone soup mix and simmer for 1 1/2 hours.

Remove the skin from the sausage. In a medium skillet, brown the sausage, breaking it into small pieces. Add the vegetables to the skillet and saute for 3-5 minutes. Add the sausage, vegetables and tomatoes to the soup. Bring soup to a boil, and add the elbow macaroni. Simmer for 30 minutes.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Teriyaki Chicken, Stir Fry Vegetables, and Egg Rolls

I marinated the chicken overnight in Yoshida's sauce. Then I sauteed it for about 7 minutes (3 1/2 each side) in a pan then put it in the oven for 20 minutes. It developed a nice glaze.

Stir Fry Veggies:
Nothing special; they're from Costco. I heated them up in the microwave.

Egg Rolls:
Also from Costco. I baked them in the oven along with the chicken.

Easy peasy. Took about a half hour total FOR REALS (not like a fake half hour, Rachael Ray).

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Butternut Squash Soup

Tonight's dinner was fantastic. It was Butternut Squash Soup and the recipe comes from Alton Brown. It is amazingly delicious and tastes like little pillows of goodness going into your mouth. I love this soup and definitely should make it more than once a year.

Squash Soup
Recipe courtesy Alton Brown
Show: Good Eats
Episode: Squash Court

6 cups (about 2 large squash) seeded 2-inch wide chunks butternut squash
Melted butter, for brushing
1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus 1 teaspoon
1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper, plus 1/2 teaspoon
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
4 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon minced ginger
4 ounces heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Brush the flesh of the squash with a little butter and season with 1 tablespoon salt and 1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper. On a sheet pan lay the squash flesh side up. Roast for about 30 to 35 minutes or until the flesh is nice and soft.

Scoop the flesh from the skin into a pot and add the stock, honey, and ginger. Bring to a simmer and puree using a stick blender. Stir in the heavy cream and return to a low simmer. Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Ribs, Saurkraut, and Potato Salad

Ribs, Saurkraut, and Homemade Potato Salad

I am stuffed to the gills right now. I ate way more than I should have but I was really hungry before dinner.

Pork country boneless ribs (don't recall how much weight; it was a "family pack" and had about 6 long ribs)
Bottle of Saurkraut
A good amount of BBQ sauce

I cut each rib in half and put it in the crockpot. Then I rinsed the saurkraut and covered the ribs. Then I added a small bottle's worth of BBQ sauce over the saurkraut. I started it late so I put it on high but ideally it should be on low, cooking all day.

Potato Salad:
Courtesy of Cook's Illustrated.
All-American Potato Salad

Note that this recipe calls for celery seed, not celery salt; if only celery salt is available, use the same amount but omit the addition of salt in the dressing. When testing the potatoes for doneness, simply taste a piece; do not overcook the potatoes or they will become mealy and will break apart. The potatoes must be just warm, or even fully cooled, when you add the dressing. If you find the potato salad a little dry for your liking, add up to 2 tablespoons more mayonnaise.

Serves 4 to 6
2 pounds russet potatoes (3 to 4 medium), peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
table salt
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1 medium rib celery , chopped fine (about 1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons minced red onion
3 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
1/2 cup mayonnaise (see note)
3/4 teaspoon powdered mustard
3/4 teaspoon celery seed
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 large hard-cooked eggs , peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes (optional)

1. Place potatoes in large saucepan and add water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to boil over medium-high heat; add 1 tablespoon salt, reduce heat to medium, and simmer, stirring once or twice, until potatoes are tender, about 8 minutes.

2. Drain potatoes and transfer to large bowl. Add vinegar and, using rubber spatula, toss gently to combine. Let stand until potatoes are just warm, about 20 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, in small bowl, stir together celery, onion, pickle relish, mayonnaise, mustard powder, celery seed, parsley, pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Using rubber spatula, gently fold dressing and eggs, if using, into potatoes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour; serve. (Potato salad can be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 day.)


In other news, I've been drinking Coca-Cola made in Mexico. I got it at Costco.

Yeah, yeah, I know. Terribly phallic. But I didn't realize it until after I had taken the photo and I'm letting it stand. Ha. Anyway, it's made with sugar rather than high fructose corn syrup. I am telling you, this is the Coke of my youth. I remember the taste and it's delectable. I've had them a few times this past week (not as much as once a day).

Friday, November 2, 2007


This is the jambalaya whilst it was cooking:

And here it is when it is done:

I have to say this is one of my favorite meals ever! I've made it a lot over the years; it's a recipe from my parents. I put the word jambalaya in quotes because it's not authentic by any stretch of the imagination. Here's the recipe:

1 lb. boneless chicken, any type, chopped into 1" pieces
1 lb. italian sausage, sliced (I think I got about 6 pieces from each link)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. cajun seasoning
1 - 28 oz. can of whole tomatoes, undrained
2 1/2 cups of chicken broth
1 cup rice (we use white; brown would need more time)

Brown the chicken and sausage in a little bit of oil in a dutch oven. Once they're mostly cooked add the onion and bell pepper. Cook for a bit until the onion is softened. Then add thyme, cajun seasoning, garlic, and tomatoes. (I put the juice/puree into the dutch oven but then use kitchen scissors to cut up the tomatoes right in the can.) Stir to combine then add the chicken broth. Bring to a boil then add the rice. Stir well, reduce heat to medium low and cover. Cook for 25 minutes. I find that after those 25 minutes I need to take the lid off and simmer, stirring frequently, until everything has thickened up.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Low Calorie Eggplant Parmesan

I wasn't intending to make this tonight. I was going to make "Broiled Eggplant with Two Cheeses" but I had Alex prep the eggplant slices after school. Big mistake, because he cut them all into inconsistently sized pieces. I decided to make Eggplant Parmesan instead and I found a low calorie recipe that still had breading on it.

So, um, yuck.

I'm trying to be conscientious about trying new vegetables and old vegetables in new ways. Hence, the desire to try eggplant. I can tell you that I was not impressed. Would I have liked it if it had been deep fried? I really don't think so.

My salad was very tasty, though.