July 26, 2011

Baked Ham & Poppy Seed Sandwiches

Everybody loves a good sandwich, but a sandwich kicked up a notch?  Oh yes.  This recipe comes to you as a combo of two recipes--one from Nummies, and one from Allrecipes.  Enjoy!

Image Source
Baked Ham & Poppy Seed Sandwiches
(a bit from Nummies and a bit from Allrecipes)

1/4 cup margarine or butter
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 Tbsp poppy seeds
1/3 cup dried minced onion
2 Tbsp prepared mustard
16 dinner rolls
16 slices ham (honey ham is my personal favorite)
16 slices swiss cheese (or cheddar, which is basically the only kind of cheese I ever have on hand)

1. Preheat oven to 350.  Combine margarine, mayo, poppy seeds, minced onion, and mustard.  
2. Spread mixture even onto both sides of each roll.  Place a slice of ham and a slice of cheese on each roll and replace the tops of the rolls.
3. Place rolls onto a cookie sheet and cover with aluminum foil.  Make sure the foil is tight so the sandwiches don't dry out while baking.  You can wrap each sandwich individually, but that takes forever.  Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until cheese is deliciously melted.  
4. Enjoy your little sandwiches.

July 21, 2011

Lemon and Almond Broccoli

I found this recipe when searching for a new way to prepare broccoli.  It was light, and the lemon added a fresh taste that made me feel healthier somehow. With a couple of very minor changes, I enjoyed the result.  I'm not sure it's one that I'll make all the time, but it was definitely nice to have a change of pace in the broccoli department.  Lemon and Almond Broccoli is a nice summery side dish.

Image Source
Lemon and Almond Broccoli

1 head fresh broccoli, cut into florets
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup slivered almonds
Salt and pepper

1. Steam or boil broccoli until tender.  Drain water and return to pan.
2. Add butter, and mix it all around in the hot pan until the butter is melted and evenly distributed.  Add lemon juice, almonds, salt, and pepper, and toss to coat evenly.
3. Serve as a light side to a heavier main dish.

July 20, 2011

Apple Bread

I'm a fan of quick breads in general.  They're easy to make and let me satisfy my sweet tooth without eating cookies or something.  I adapted this one mostly from the Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook that I have with a few suggestions I picked up from the comments of various Allrecipes apple bread recipes.  I've made this bread with Fuji and Gala apples because that's what was on sale.  Almost all kinds of apples work for this bread, but steer very clear of Red Delicious when you're baking with apples.  Golden Delicious, Gala, Granny Smith, Macintosh, Honeycrisp, Jonagold, and Fuji apples all work nicely.  Enjoy!

Image by Two Peas and their Pod
Apple Bread
(adapted from the Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook) 

1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 egg, beaten
1 cup sugar (if you're feeling adventurous, try doing half white, half brown sugar)
1-1/2 cups finely shredded, peeled apple (or about 3 regular-sized apples)  If you like biting into nice, soft, little apple chunks, shred two of the apples and dice the remaining apple
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp applesauce

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a loaf pan and set it aside.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, baking powder, and nutmeg.  Make a well in the center.
3. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine egg, sugar, shredded apples, butter, and applesauce.  Pour the entire apple mixture at once into the well you made in the flour mixture.  Stir until just moistened.  It will be lumpy, and that's a good thing.  Overstirring will actually lessen the quality of the finished bread.
4. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan (sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, if you wish), and bake for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the loaf.
5. Cool 10 minutes in pan, then remove from pan and let cool completely on wire racks.  For best results, wrap it up and store overnight before slicing (yeah right!)
6. Relish in your moist, delectable loaf of apple bread.

July 19, 2011

Turkey Minestrone Soup

I invented a new soup yesterday, so I'm putting it up here before I forget what I did.  Isn't it fun when you can take a couple of recipes that sound good and create your own thing?  And then when it ends up tasting good, doesn't it just make you so excited for life?  That's how it feels for me.  With a little bit of everything, I give you my newest soup invention.

Image Source
Turkey Minestrone Soup

1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup carrots, sliced
1/3 cup onion, chopped
1 tsp garlic salt
1 quart (4 cups) turkey broth (or chicken broth, if that's all you've got)
2 (15 oz) cans stewed tomatoes
1 cup cooked turkey, chopped (again, this would be great with chicken too)
2/3 cup uncooked brown rice
1/2 Tbsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp poultry seasoning
1 (14.5 oz) can green beans, roughly chopped
1 (15.5 oz) can garbonzo beans (same as chick peas)
Salt and pepper

1. In a large stock pot, warm olive oil over medium heat.  Add onions and carrots, then saute until vegetables are almost tender, stirring frequently (about 5 minutes).  Note: because you're sauteing them in a pot, rather than a skillet, the chances of them sticking to the pan or burning quickly are higher, so make sure you watch them.
2. Add broth, stewed tomatoes, turkey, brown rice, Italian seasoning, and poultry seasoning.  Return to a boil, cover, and reduce heat.  Simmer for 25-30 minutes, or until rice is tender.  Add green beans and garbonzo beans and heat until warm.  You can add the beans earlier if you want them to be more flavorful, but adding them too early may make them too soft, depending on your texture preferences.
3. Salt and pepper to taste, and serve it up with some parmesan cheese bread.

Parmesan Cheese Bread

I really don't know why I haven't put this one up already.  I make it all the time because it goes with almost everything and can round out a meal when you didn't make a side dish and you realize that there's only a bowl of pasta on the table.  In moments like this, I make parmesan cheese bread.  I'm pretty sure that makes my husband's perception of the meal go up about four notches, regardless of whatever else I made.  It's not an exact science, hence the total lack of measurements.  It takes like three minutes to make.

Image Source
Parmesan Cheese Bread

Garlic Salt
Seasoning of some sort (Italian seasoning, basil, parsley, oregano...whatever smells good at the moment)
Parmesan Cheese

1. Turn on your broiler to heat up a bit.
2. Butter your bread.  Sprinkle on your seasonings until it looks and smells yummy.  Just be careful with the garlic salt because it tends to blend into the bread, making it hard to tell just how much is on there if you weren't paying attention when you sprinkled.  Parmesan cheese it.
3. Place the bread on a cookie sheet (or, if you're like me, a little piece of aluminum foil) and broil until the edges of the bread are just brown.  Do NOT forget you're making it or your house will end up smelling like smoke all night.  Just watch it, and you'll be fine.
4. Devour the goodness.

July 9, 2011

Confetti Rice

I've decided that I know how to make quite a few main dishes but don't really know many side dishes (besides heating up a can of green beans or something), so I'm trying to expand my horizons with side dishes.  I found this one the other day on allrecipes.com and found it to be flavorful and tasty.  It was a very colorful way to spruce up an otherwise boring-looking meal.  This is definitely one that you could play around with and use different kinds of vegetables to suit it to your taste.  I give you...confetti rice.

Image Source
Confetti Rice
(adapted from this recipe on allrecipes.com)

14 fluid oz chicken broth (That's either a can of broth or a little over 1 3/4 cups water + 2 bouillon cubes)
1 cup uncooked rice
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp oregano
1/8 tsp black pepper
1 cup diced bell peppers (Here's where you can have some fun.  I did half a cup red peppers and half a cup green peppers.  Try 1/3 cup each of red, orange, and yellow.  Have fun with this part, as long as it adds up to a whole cup)
1/4 cup onion, minced
1/2 cup frozen green peas, thawed
2 tsp parsley
dash lemon juice (optional)

1. In a large pot, combine broth, rice, water, salt, oregano, and black pepper.  Cover, and bring to boil.  Just as it starts to boil, add bell peppers and onions.  Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until rice is tender.
2. Remove from heat and stir in peas.  Cover again and let stand 5 minutes. 
3. Toss with parsley and a dash of lemon juice (if desired).  If you've read many of my recipes, you can probably tell that I like to add lemon juice to a lot of things.
4. Pair it with a bland-looking main dish, and you've got yourself an awesome-looking meal.

July 6, 2011

Mock Chicken Fried Steak

The other day I made biscuits and gravy.  Apparently, those gravy packets make way more gravy than you can use on a dozen biscuits, so I had lots of leftovers.  In my quest to not waste any food, I got online and searched for things I could make using country gravy.  To my delight, I found this recipe for mock chicken fried steak that goes perfectly with country gravy.  Because it uses ground beef instead of real steak, it's much less expensive than the original version.  But never fear!  What you sacrifice in meat quality is not sacrificed in taste.  Give it a shot, and you might be surprised at how close to the real thing this tastes.

Image Source
Mock Chicken Fried Steak
(adapted from this recipe on allrecipes.com)

1 lb ground beef
2 Tbsp parsley
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup oil for frying (unless you're going to bake them to be healthier).

1. In a mixing bowl, combine ground beef, parsley, chili powder, salt, egg, and about 1/4 cup bread crumbs.  Mix until well combined.  Divide into about 6 balls, then flatten each ball into a patty. 
2. Place the remaining 1/4 cup bread crumbs in a small, shallow bowlDip each patty into the bread crumbs to coat completely.  Chill coated patties in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.  This helps the patty solidify into one solid mass so it doesn't fall apart during cooking.
3. Here's where you can go one of two ways:
          Option A: Fry them (after all, it is chicken fried chicken).  In this case, warm the oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Fry until each side is golden brown and the meat is thoroughly browned inside each patty.  Drain patties on paper towels.
          Option B: Bake them (after all, it's a "mock" recipe anyway, so who cares if you don't fry it to make it healthier).  In this case, bake at 375 for 25-30 minutes, or until meat is cooked thoroughly.
4. Top patties with an abundant supply of country gravy, and eat it with some good old corn on the cob (or maybe even some sweet cornbread).

July 5, 2011

Santa Fe Casserole

When I first started dating my husband, he decided to make me dinner one night.  He said he was making his favorite meal--Santa Fe Casserole.  I had no idea what to expect, but when I tasted the first bite I knew I was going to keep the recipe.  It's tasty, and I'm not sure if I've ever had another dish quite like it.  From our family cookbook, I give you Santa Fe Casserole.

Image Source
Santa Fe Casserole

1 lb ground turkey (or ground beef)
1 pkg taco seasoning (about 2.5 Tbsp)
2 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup flour
1 cup sour cream
2 cans (4 oz each) diced green chiles
11 oz tortilla chips
1-2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded (depending on how cheesy you want it)
1/2 cup green onions, sliced (I usually omit these, and it tastes just fine)

1. In a medium skillet, brown ground beef until crumbly.  Drain fat. Add the taco seasoning and blend well.
2. In a small bowl, mix together broth and flour (it will be less lumpy if you use cool broth, rather than warm), then add broth mixture to meat.  Bring to a boil to slightly thicken the liquid.  Stir in sour cream and green chiles until well blended and remove from heat.
3. Place ½ of the tortilla chips in a lightly greased 13x9 baking dish, then top the chips with ½ the meat mixture, ½ of the cheese, and ½ of the green onions.  Layer again with remaining ingredients.  Any chips that are left uncovered by the sauce or cheese will get crispier, so if you like it crispy, leave more chips exposed or vice versa.
4. Bake uncovered at 357 degrees for 20 minutes.  Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
5. Enjoy it now and again tomorrow, when it will taste even better. 

July 4, 2011

Peanut Butter and Banana Creamsicles

I recently attended a surprise birthday party for none other than my fabulous husband.  As a prize for winning one of the games we played, he received a totally awesome popsicle maker, and I just had to try it out by making these peanut butter and banana creamsicles.  They were ridiculously easy to make, and my husband really enjoyed them, so I'm posting them here.  Don't have a popsicle maker?  Just use those little paper cups with a popsicle stick stuck in the middle.  If you're craving a cold summer treat, give these a go and see what you think.

Image Source (by Jessicafm)
Peanut Butter and Banana Creamsicles

1 small (3.5 oz) box instant banana pudding mix
2 cups milk
2 tsp peanut butter

1. Prepare pudding mix by whisking two cups milk into the banana pudding for approximately 2 minutes.  Place pudding in refrigerator for 4-5 minutes.  Basically, you just make the pudding according to package directions and take it out just barely before it's fully set.  I made this with a bigger box of pudding and just added extra peanut butter, and it turned out great.
2. Mash and stir peanut butter into the pudding until mixed evenly.
3. Pour pudding mixture into popsicle molds and freeze until solid (at least 5 hours).
4. Eat your homemade creamsicle creation.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...