Saturday, October 25, 2008

Easy Sloppy Joe Pot Pie (plus bonus pics at the end)

Easy Sloppy Joe Pot Pie

A la my friend from Dining Alone, here is a photo of the recipe.

1 medium onion (or half of a very large one)
Bisquick or generic
4 oz. cheese, grated

Combine the chopped onion and hamburger into the skillet and brown the hamburger.

Meanwhile, make the batter. Put a half cup of milk into a cup of Bisquick.

Put an egg into the bowl.

While the hamburger browns and the onion cooks, it's drink time!

Ingredients for Sex on the Beach:
Peach Schnapps
Orange Juice

Pour 1 1/2 oz. vodka into a shaker filled with ice.

Next, pour 1/2 oz. peach schnapps into the shaker.

Now, add 2 oz. each cranberry and orange juices.

Shake and then strain into a glass filled with ice.


Ahem. Back to the task at hand. Once the hamburger has been browned, add a can of Manwich.

Then, add the shredded cheese. No, your eyes are not deceiving you. I took the somewhat easy way out and used mozzarella we already had grated vs. grating sharp cheddar. It was just as good, so you can use any cheese you have on hand.

Mix it all together and pour it into an 8x8 pan sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.

Then, pour the Bisquick mix over the top and spread it to cover.

Bake it in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes.

Delicious!! The toddler didn't eat very much of it but the middle child loved it.

Now, for some random photos.

This was my dinner a few days ago. Store-bought chow mein and egg rolls.

Here's my Mexican Chicken Macaroni and Cheese. This was delicious as well.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Pasta e Fagioli Soup

Pasta e fagioli soup and cheddar biscuit. Completely delicious!

The soup was from a base by Bean Cuisine:

I added homemade turkey broth, turkey Italian sausages, and vegetables (onion, garlic, yellow bell pepper, carrots, celery). I also added a can of stewed tomatoes. The soup was divine!

I also made some cheddar biscuits from a recipe I found on the internet and seems to be highly replicated (replicated? duplicated?). Anyway, it's supposed to mirror Red Lobster's cheddar biscuits. I don't know if they do as I have never eaten there but the biscuits were very good. Here's the recipe:

Cheddar Bay Biscuits
like Red Lobster's®
Garlic and cheddar make a flavorful addition to basic drop biscuits.

Serves: 8
Prep. Time: 0:15

2 cups Bisquick® baking mix
2/3 cup milk - low fat okay
1/2 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese - low fat okay
1/4 cup butter OR margarine - melted
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
parsley flakes - as needed

-Combine Bisquick®, milk, and cheddar and beat with a wooden spoon for about 30 seconds.
-Spoon onto a lightly greased cookie sheet.
-Bake in 450 degree oven for 8 - 10 minutes.
-Combine butter and garlic powder and pour over hot biscuits; sprinkle with parsley.

Notes: As we all know, restaurants have access to ingredients home cooks do not. In this case, I've been told Red Lobster® uses their Shrimp Scampi butter mix (a powder) to flavor their biscuits. So, this recipe is as close as a home cook can get to the real thing.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Chicken Stew

I found a recipe similar to this on the Kraft Foods website. I modified it to fit our taste buds.

2 lbs. chicken breasts, boneless and skinless, cut into bite-sized pieces
16 small red potatoes, halved
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can full of milk
1/2 cup Italian dressing
16 oz. bag frozen mixed vegetables
sour cream

Put the chicken into a dutch oven to sauté. (Next time I'll do this in batches so they'll brown.)

After the chicken is cooked, add the potatoes.

Next, add the Italian dressing.

Add one can cream of chicken soup (contrary to what is pictured in the ingredients photo).

Pour milk into the can and then put it into the dutch oven.

Now, add the mixed vegetables.

Mix together, bring to a boil, then simmer for about 30 minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender.

Add about three tablespoonfuls of sour cream. Stir to incorporate into the soup.

Serve with biscuits!

This soup was very good and a bit reminiscent of tom ka gai (Thai chicken soup). I will definitely make this again!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Taco Bake

Taco Bake! I always put vegetables in there to pad out the casserole and to make it more nutritious. Also, I used ground chicken, not ground beef.

And, look! I used a small plate.

Here's the Taco Bake recipe from Kraft Food and Family. It's pretty good as is but I like the veggies in it (I just boil the frozen veggies along with the pasta).

Taco Bake
Prep Time: 15 min
Total Time: 35 min
Makes: 6 servings, 1 cup each

What You Need

1 pkg. (14 oz.) KRAFT Deluxe Macaroni & Cheese Dinner
1 lb. ground beef
1 pkg. (1-1/4 oz.) TACO BELL® HOME ORIGINALS® Taco Seasoning Mix
3/4 cup BREAKSTONE'S or KNUDSEN Sour Cream
1-1/2 cups KRAFT Shredded Cheddar Cheese, divided
1 cup TACO BELL® HOME ORIGINALS® Thick 'N Chunky Salsa

Make It

HEAT oven to 400°F. Prepare Dinner as directed on package. While Macaroni is cooking, cook meat with taco seasoning as directed on package.

STIR sour cream into prepared Dinner; spoon 1/2 into 8-inch square baking dish. Top with layers of meat mixture, 1 cup cheese and remaining Dinner mixture; cover with foil.

BAKE 15 min.; top with salsa and remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered, 5 min. or until cheese is melted.

TACO BELL® and HOME ORIGINALS® are trademarks owned and licensed by Taco Bell Corp.
Kraft Kitchens Tips

Keep an eye on portion size when you enjoy this hearty meal.

Special Extra
For extra crunch, prepare and bake as directed, topping with 1/2 cup coarsely crushed tortilla chips along with the salsa and cheese.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Salisbury Steak, Mashed Potatoes, Peas & Carrots

I initially got this recipe over at Allrecipes and modified it a bit. I added a can of cream of mushroom soup, basically. Everything else was as written. The teenager loved this as did the middle child. The toddler barely touched it. My husband and I liked it all right.

2 pounds hamburger
1 egg
can of french onion soup
can of cream of mushroom soup
ground mustard
worcestershire sauce
bread crumbs
salt and pepper

Put the hamburger in a bowl and add the bread crumbs.

Add 1/3 cup of the french onion soup and the beaten egg.

Mix it all up, gently, and form into patties.

Brown the patties in a pan, about 5-6 minutes per side.

Make the gravy. Basically, it's mixing everything left in the recipe together.

Pour the gravy on the browned patties.

Cover and let cook for 20-25 minutes. When they're done they'll look like this.

Serve. This was actually pretty good. And now that I think about it, it's obviously a classic TV dinner meal! So, as I look at this again, it looks very greasy. It didn't taste greasy but it definitely had too much, I think.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Fall Menu!

Today is the first day since Thursday I have felt like a human being. I have had the plague for days and I can't remember the last time a cold has knocked me out like this. Therefore, some comfort food was definitely in order.

Macaroni and Cheese with Acorn Squash

2 acorn squash
Brown sugar


1 lb. macaroni
1 Tbsp. salt
5 Tbsp. butter
6 Tbsp. flour
1 1/2 tsp. ground mustard
1/4 tsp. cayenne
5 cups milk
8 oz. sharp Cheddar, grated
8 oz. Colby Jack, grated
1 tsp. salt

First, get the squash ready.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and cut the squash in half.

Scoop out the seeds.

Lay them cut side down on a cookie sheet sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.

After 30 minutes, take them out of the oven and flip them over. Put about 1/2 Tbsp. butter in the middle.

Sprinkle lightly with brown sugar.

Now sprinkle lightly with kosher salt. Put them back in the oven for another half hour.

Now, get your water going for the macaroni. Add a tablespoon of salt to the water.

Once it's boiling, add the macaroni and cook for about 10 minutes.

Drain the macaroni and reserve in the colander.

Now put the butter into the dutch oven and melt over medium high heat.

Add the flour, ground mustard, and cayenne.

Whisk into a roux. Keep whisking for about a minute.

Add the milk slowly.

Whisk constantly until it boils.

In the meantime, get the squash out of the oven. How lovely!

Keep stirring the milk. It will feel like an eternity.

Oh! Finally it's boiling!! Stir occasionally for about 5 minutes.

Now is the time to add the cheese.

Stir it all up (off the heat) until it's melted and beautiful.

Add the macaroni and stir until it's all incorporated.

Man, this is just lovely!

Here is a fantastic fall meal. Perfection! It was very tasty, too!