Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Taco Spaghetti

So yeah, it's been a long time since I've posted. No excuses, oh wait, I have four of them...ages 7, 5, 3, and 1! Anyway, this is one of their new faves. Oh, and you can freeze it!

Taco Spaghetti
1 can corn, drained
1, 4-oz can diced green chiles
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup salsa
2 cups grated cheddar, divided
1 lb thin spaghetti
1 lb lean hamburger
1 small onion, chopped
1 pkg taco seasoning

2 oz. cream cheese, cut into cubes

lettuce, tomato, avocado, sour cream, and olives for serving

Preheat oven to 350.
In a large bowl combine corn, chiles, beans, salsa and 1 C cheddar, set aside.
Cook spaghetti until al dente according to package directions. Meanwhile brown hamburger and onion, drain. Stir in taco seasoning and 1 C water, simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in cream cheese until melted and distributed.

Add meat mixture and cooked spaghetti to corn mixture and stir well. Transfer to a large baking dish or two 8x8 baking dishes. Top with remaining 1 C cheddar. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until heated through. Serve topped with lettuce, tomato, avocado, sour cream and/or olives.

It's also yummy with crunchy tortilla strips or crumbled corn chips.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Super S'more Brownies

Mmm, this idea is so delicious! (Thank you Cuisine at home!) All you have to do is make your favorite brownie recipe (or box) and bake it in an 11x17 baking sheet. (Make sure you grease the bottom well.) After your brownies are done top them with 1 cup mini marshmallows, 3/4 c. coarsely chopped graham cracker crumbs and 3/4. cup chopped chocolate. Put 'em under under the broiler until the chocolate melts and the marshmallows puff.

Want to know something cool? You can even GRILL them. Combine the marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate and top brownie squares. Grill on low heat until the chocolate melts and the marshmallows puff. I think this is my new favorite way to make brownies! And if you really want to go for the gold, try using a Symphony bar with almonds and toffee. If I gain 30 pounds this summer, this recipe is why!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Creamy Pasta with Ham and Broccoli

I really love cooking. When my cooking mags come in the mail I get really excited and generally read them from cover to cover. Recently I took a copy of one to a youth activity which I needed to attend but in which didn't want to participate. (Turns out 29 isn't a good age to learn how to roller skate.) Some of the kids laughed as they skated by and saw that I was reading up on different kinds of oil and their uses.

Recently my zeal for the kitchen has fizzled. It's probably a product of the long winter. I love being a mom and staying home but the longer the winter lasts the more the walls look like prison cells and the children behave like inmates. Sometimes even the warden wants out of prison. My point is, even though I love cooking, it feels like a chore at times.

To assuage the feeling of working in the kitchen, I've attached myself to simple recipes that yield delicious results, like this one. It has only 5 ingredients: broccoli, ham, noodles, cream cheese and water.

Start by oven-roasting some broccoli.
Then chop up some deli ham.
Cook some noodles until al dente and save some of the pasta water.

Mix the pasta water with the cream cheese.

Then stir it all together.

And that's it. Simple enough, huh? Go here to see the full recipe from Everyday Food.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Sweet and Sour Chicken

I have to say that I am not one for much Chinese Food, but I really love this Sweet and Sour Chicken. This recipe is not difficult to prepare, you can make it to feed a crowd and it tastes delicious to boot!

Heat up a large skillet over medium heat. Start with some chicken breasts (use as many as will get eaten), dip them in some beaten eggs and then dredge in flour seasoned with salt and pepper. Shake gently to remove excess.
Add 1/4 inch oil to your skillet and fry those chicken breasts until they are golden and crispy.
Place the browned chicken in a large, shallow casserole. Mix together 1 1/2 cups sugar, 1 cup white vinegar, 6 cubes chicken bouillon, 1 cup hot water, 1 cup ketchup and 6 tablespoons soy sauce. Pour sauce over the chicken.
Place in a cold oven. Heat oven to 350 degrees and bake for 45-60 minutes. Serve over cooked rice. Or you can really go for the gold and serve it with Bacon Fried Rice.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Candy Cane Swirl Chocolate Cookies

Aren't these cookies just adorable? I was thinking about those Peanut Butter Blossom cookies and about all the different flavors of Hershey's Kisses that are available during the holiday season. And I thought that a Candy Cane Kiss on top of a chocolate cookie would be delectable. I was quite happy with the results of my experiment. One thing I didn't anticipate is that these Kisses melt and don't quite hold their shape like the chocolate ones do. So out came the toothpick to finish them off with a flourish. I actually think they look fancier with the swirl. Enjoy!
Candy Cane Swirl Chocolate Cookies
(adapted from Betty Crocker's Chocolate Crinkles)
2 cups granulated sugar, plus more for rolling
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
3/4 cup cocoa
1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
4 large eggs
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 bag Candy Cane Kisses, unwrapped
Mix 2 cups granulated sugar, oil, vanilla, cocoa and butter in a large bowl. Mix in eggs, one at a time. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours.
Heat oven to 350. Line baking sheets with parchment.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls and roll in granulated sugar. Place about 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.
Bake 8-10 minutes, the tops should just be beginning to crack. Remove from oven and immediately press one Candy Cane kiss into the center. Remove to wire rack to cool. Once the Kiss has melted, gently swirl the very top with a toothpick. Let the Kiss set before serving.
I unwrapped my Kisses as the cookies baked, that way I only unwrapped as many as were needed. The rest my kids unwrapped and ate while my back was turned. My batch made 55 cookies.

Monday, December 7, 2009

A Timely Opportunity

I made some cute, delicious cookies today and I will post the recipe for them tomorrow. I promise. Right now though I'd like to direct you to my other blog where you can enter a giveaway for a beaded watch. It's my first giveaway, so I'm really excited about it! Good luck!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Microwave Caramel Corn

I found this recipe in an issue of Family Circle a couple of months ago while I sat waiting for 2 HOURS at my OB/GYN's office. Although the receptionist has always said I was welcome to take any magazines that I'd like from the office, I never have because it always felt weird, akin to stealing. However, after waiting that long I felt a new justification for removing the issue from the office.

I wasn't sure about using the microwave for caramel corn, but it is just as crisp and tasty as caramel corn toasted in the oven. And even though it calls for pretzels and cashews, I'm sure you could come up with several other "stir-in" combinations/substitutes and the results would still be delicious.

12 cups popped popcorn (about 1/2 cup popcorn kernels)
1 cup mini pretzels
1 cup salted cashews
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 tsp salt
1 cube unsalted butter (1/2 cup)
1/2 tsp baking soda

You'll also need a large paper grocery bag.

In a large (read: huge) bowl combine popcorn, pretzels and cashews. Set aside.

Melt butter in a large, microwavable container, 1 minute. Stir in brown sugar, corn syrup and salt. Microwave for 2 minutes. Remove and stir well. Microwave 2 minutes longer. Remove and stir in baking soda. It will foam up and rise. Carefully pour over popcorn mixture and stir until evenly coated.

Pour popcorn into a large paper bag and fold over the top of the bag. Place in the microwave and cook for 1-1/2 minutes. Remove bag and shake vigorously. Return to microwave for 1 minute longer. Remove from microwave and pour onto a large cookie sheet or parchment paper to cool. Break into pieces when cool.

Then begin Caramel Corn Anonymous meetings because you will be addicted.