Monday, August 16, 2010

Smothered Pork Chops

The Menu:
Smothered Pork Chops


The Original Recipe:
I found this posted by Dawn on Babycenter. Yum! I don't believe I changed anything. I happened to have a can of msg free mushroom soup, so I used it. It turned out great! I used white potatoes diced small.

Smothered Pork Chops


4-6 center cut chops

flour

salt

pepper

garlic

1 can cream of mushroom

1 can milk

1 med onion chopped

2-3 med potatoes diced small optional



Season the chops with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Then dredge in flour to coat. Sear them in hot oil just until browned, they don't need to be cooked thru. Then transfer to baking dish. Add chopped onion to pan drippings and saute for a few minutes until they start to change colors. Add milk, soup, and season liberally with seasonings. Stir will on low heat until its all combined well and starting to bubble. Add diced potatoes to chops if you want, then pour soup mixture over chops. Top with cheese if you like, if not its fine too. Then cover with foil and bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until meat is no longer pink and sauce is bubbly. Makes a WONDERFUL gravy. YUMMY!
* A tip I have learned is to poke your potaotes with a fork and microwave for about 3 minutes, let cool while you fry up your porkchops. Then slice them into cubes over your porkchops and pour the gravey over them, cover and bake. The potatoes will get done a lot faster and save your meat from becoming tough.
 

Friday, August 13, 2010

Unstuffed Zucchini Sausage Skillet

The Menu:
Unstuffed Zucchini Sausage Skillet

The Original Recipe:
I had an inspiration for this dish. I found it on cassiecraves.blogspot. Here is the Original Recipe. My "Unstuffed" way is below. Delish!

Vegetable Stuffed Zucchini


4 medium zucchini (about 8 ounces each), washed

4 tablespoons olive oil

3 medium red potatoes (about 1 pound), cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 medium yellow or red onion, chopped fine

5 large cloves garlic, finely minced

3 medium tomatoes (about 1 1/4 pounds), seeded and chopped

1/3 cup shredded fresh basil leaves

6 ounces Monterey Jack cheese (about 1 1/2 cups), shredded



1. Adjust one oven rack to upper-middle position and second oven rack to lowest position, then place a rimmed baking sheet on each rack and heat oven to 400 degrees.



2. Meanwhile, halve each zucchini lengthwise. With a small spoon, scoop out the seeds and most of the flesh so that the walls of the zucchini are about 1/4-inch thick all the way around. Season the cut sides of the zucchini with salt and pepper and brush them lightly with 2 tablespoons of the oil. Set the zucchini halves cut-side down on the hot baking sheet that has been preheating on the lower rack. Meanwhile, toss the potatoes with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, salt, and pepper, to taste, in a small bowl and spread in a single layer on the hot baking sheet that has been preheating on the upper rack. Roast the zucchini until slightly softened and skins are slightly wrinkled, about 10 minutes, while simultaneously roasting the potatoes until they are tender and lightly browned, 12 to 14 minutes. When the zucchini has finished baking, remove it from the oven and using tongs, flip the zucchini halves over on the baking sheet and set aside.



3. While the zucchini and potatoes are roasting, heat the remaining tablespoon oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat until shimmering, about 2 minutes. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and beginning to brown, about 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and cooked potatoes; cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 3 minutes. Off the heat, stir in the basil, 1/2 cup cheese, and salt and pepper to taste.



4. Divide filling evenly among the zucchini halves on the baking sheet, spooning about 1/2 cup into each, and packing it lightly; sprinkle with remaining cheese. Return the baking sheet to the oven, this time to the upper rack, and bake the zucchini until heated through and cheese is spotty brown, about 6 minutes. Serve immediately.


The Way I Made It My Own:
I don't like stuffing things into a vegetable because I know my kids will eat the insides and not the outside!! So, in order for them to eat the veggies, too, I made it into and unstuffed dish. Boy, am I glad I did! My kids LOVED this dish. Yes, loved it! I have never been so proud of my kids for eating before this night! This was a GREAT way to cook using those fresh garden vegetables!

Unstuffed Zucchini Sausage Casserole


1 medium zucchini

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 lb. of spicey sausage (or any you prefer)

3 medium potatoes, cut into small cubes

1 medium yellow or red onion, chopped fine

1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 large cloves garlic, finely minced

3 roma tomatoes, chopped

1/3 cup shredded fresh basil leaves, chopped

fresh oregano, thyme, sage, etc. to your taste (I would recommend 1/2 tsp. each fresh) (optional)

1/2 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded



Cook and crumble sausage in large skillet until cooked through. Set aside. Add oil to pan. Add potatoes, onion, garlic, green pepper, zucchini, salt and pepper and saute until onions are clear and potatoes are browning on all sides. Add sausage and tomatoes to pan. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are soft and cooked through, about 20-25 mintues. Turn off stove and add cheese to top, recover and let melt.

Cheesy Broccoli and Rice

The Menu:
Cheesy Broccoli and Rice



The Original Recipe:
Such bad pictures latley?? Anyway, I found this on cassiecraves.blogspot. Yum! My kids loved it. I have one child who doesn't like cheese, but he ate it! A keeper for sure. It's a fantastically easy side dish.


Cheesy Broccoli and Rice


2 tablespoons butter

1 small onion, chopped

1 clove minced garlic

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup quick-cooking white rice

1 cup chicken broth

1 10-ounce package frozen chopped broccoli

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 cup sour cream

1/4 cup parmesan cheese



1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened and fragrant. Add garlic; cook and stir for 30 seconds. Add salt and pepper to taste.



2. Stir in rice and cook until the edges begin to brown just slightly. Stir in broccoli and chicken broth. Heat to boiling. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 5 minutes.



3. Return saucepan to burner. Over low heat, add cheddar cheese, sour cream, and parmesan cheese, stirring just until cheese is melted. Taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly.


The Way I Made It My Own:
I took out and added a couple of things. Yum!

Cheesy Broccoli and Rice


2 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove minced garlic
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup quick-cooking brown rice
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 small crown of  fresh broccoli
1 carrot, peeled

1. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened and fragrant. Add garlic; cook and stir for 30 seconds. Add salt and pepper to taste.

2. Meanwhile, use hand chopper, or finely dice up broccoli and carrots, add to pan. Saute for a few minutes.

3 Stir in rice and cook until the edges begin to brown just slightly. Stir in chicken broth. Heat to boiling. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 5 minutes.

3. Return saucepan to burner. Over low heat, add cheddar cheese, stirring just until cheese is melted. Taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly.

Lemon Curry Tilapia

The Menu:
Lemon Curry Tilapia

The Original Recipe:
I found this on whatsonmymenu.blogspot. It looked so simple and delicious. I didn't make the cucumber salad that went with it. I just wanted the fish!


Lemon Curry Tilapia with Cool Cucumber Salad

Ingredients:

3/4 cup plain nonfat yogurt (I used Greek)

1/2 cucumber, peeled and shredded (I suggest dicing instead)

1 carrot, shredded

juice of 1 lemon

salt and pepper

2 T olive oil

4 4-oz tilapia fillets (I just used 2)

1 t sweet smoked paprika

1 t curry powder

1 scallion, finely chopped



Directions:

-In a medium bowl, combine the yogurt, cucumber, carrot and 1 T lemon juice; season with salt.

-In a large nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Season the tilapia with the paprika, curry powder, salt and pepper. Add to the skillet and cook, turning once, until just cooked through, about 5 minutes.

-Drizzle with the remaining lemon juice. Serve with the cucumber salad and top both with the scallion.


The Way I Made It My Own:
I didn't make the cucumber salad that goes with it. From the reivew that I read, the fish is great alone. They were right. Delish! My kids even loved it! I had no idea they liked curry, and now that I know I will be making this again! I also broiled it in the oven instead of on the stovetop.


Lemon Curry Tilapia
Ingredients:
juice of 1 lemon
salt and pepper
6 4-oz tilapia fillets
1 t sweet smoked paprika
1 t curry powder

Directions:
Preheat Broiler on Hi. Sprinkle each Tilapia with salt, pepper, curry and paprika. Sprinkle each piece with a bit of lemon. Broile for about 8-10 minutes or until flakey.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Bread Twists

The Menu:
Bread Twists

The Original Recipe:
Ok, so I know the picture doesn't do the actual breadtwists any justice, but they are SO good!! I found the recipe on favfamilyrecipes.com. I will make them again, for sure, and I will use this recipe for my pizza dough from now on, too. YUM! I am not sure if it is the butter, or what, but everyone loved them! I added a bit of basil to my dough. It rolled out nice and everything. I think this is the first time I have ever successfully made pizza dough! :oP

Bread Twists

1½ cups warm water

2 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. yeast

Let that sit for 5 minutes. Then add:

3½ cups flour
1 tsp Salt

Mix until smooth then let raise for 10 minutes. Roll out dough into a large square on a floured surface. Brush with melted (real) butter mixed with garlic and then sprinkle with kosher salt. Fold in half and cut into 1 inch strips. Twist and place on a cooking sheet. Let sit for 15 to 20 minutes to raise. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Immediately after baking, brush with more garlic butter and sprinkle with kosher salt and grated parmesan cheese.
Serve with marinara, alfredo sauce, or ranch for dipping.









*Dough also makes a great pizza dough, just roll out into a large circle, add your favorite toppings, and bake at 400 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes

Tuna Stuffed Cucumber

The Menu:
Tuna Stuffed Cucumber

The Original Recipe:
This came from the blog Lunches Fit for a Kid. I knew right away I wanted to make them for our ladies book group on Friday. They were very light and good. Kind of bland for my taste. I did add a bit of fresh thyme to them, but I think some onion powder and maybe sprinkled with a bit of feta on top would of been perfect. I also found that you could also serve it ontop of a Ritz cracker with great results and added flavor.

Tuna Stuffed Cucumber


1 cucumber

1 can tuna, packed in water

4 Tbsp ranch dressing (I used low fat)

1 Tbsp fresh dill (you could use dry, but fresh is so delicious)

Sesame seeds (optional)



Cut the cucumber in half width-wise, and scoop out the seeds carefully with a spoon, so you are left with a hollow tube of cucumber. Peel carefully.