Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Crockpot Chicken Santa Fe

This meal is as easy as it is delicious. You all know how much I love crockpot recipes, definitely give this one a try!

Chicken Santa Fe
from Closet Cooking

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon cumin, toasted and ground
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1 pound chicken breast
  • 1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • cayenne pepper to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 1 handful cilantro, chopped
  1. Heat the oil in a pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the onions and saute until tender and a bit caramelized, about 4-6 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about a minute and transfer to the crockpot
  4. Add the chicken and cook until browned on both sides, about 3-4 minutes per side and set aside.
  5. Add the chicken broth to the pan, deglaze it and transfer to the crockpot
  6. Add the diced tomatoes, black beans, corn, cayenne, salt and pepper to the crockpot, stir, add the chicken and cook on low heat for 8 hours.
  7. Remove the chicken, shred it and return to pot.
  8. Serve over steamed rice, garnished with green onions and cilantro.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

I had some extra time one weekend and decided I wanted to tackle a fairly involved meal. I decided to try this gumbo, and even though it took quite a bit of work it was well worth the extra time. The thing that took the longest was the roux, it just would not brown! I eventually decided it was dark enough and just continued on, and the meal was still very flavorful even if the roux wasn't quite right. This even froze well, and made excellent leftovers!

I'd also like to wish my husband a happy anniversary. 7 years together, it's been incredible. <3

Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
from Annie's Eats

6 oz. bacon, diced
2 lbs. chicken legs or thighs, bone-in and skin-on **I used chicken breast**
1 lb. andouille sausage, sliced (or spicy Italian sausage, crumbled)
½ cup peanut or other vegetable oil **I used olive oil**
1 cup flour
2 green bell peppers, seeded and diced
4 stalks celery, diced
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp. tomato paste
4 cups chicken stock
4 cups water
½-1 lb. okra, sliced into discs **I omitted this**
3 green onions, chopped
Chopped fresh parsley, for serving

For the Cajun spice mix:1 tsp. black pepper
½-1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. celery seed
2 tbsp. sweet paprika
1 tbsp. garlic powder
1 tbsp. dried thyme
1 tbsp. dried oregano

In a large stockpot or Dutch oven set over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until crispy. Remove the cooked bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside. Set the chicken pieces skin side down in the bacon grease to brown. Season the side facing up with salt. Cook 4-5 minutes without moving. Flip the chicken pieces over and brown on the opposite side. Remove the browned chicken pieces to a plate and set aside. Add the sausage to the pan and cook until well browned. Remove to the plate with the chicken.

The amount of fat remaining in the pot should be about ½ cup. Add the additional peanut or vegetable oil to the pot. After the oil has heated for a minute or two, stir in the flour. Stir this mixture together almost constantly for the first few minutes, then every couple of minutes or so thereafter. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook the roux until it becomes fairly dark.

While the roux is cooking, combine the chicken stock and water in a separate pot and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and maintain at a simmer.

When the roux has reached the appropriate color, stir in the diced green pepper, celery and onion. Mix well. Let cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for about 2 more minutes. Mix in the tomato paste.Using a large ladle, gradually add the hot chicken stock mixture to the pot. It will sizzle and seize as the roux absorbs the liquid. Continue adding the stock, stirring constantly and scraping the bottom of the pot. You may not need the full amount of liquid but add enough so that it is slightly more watery than you want the final product to be since the mixture will cook down over several hours. Stir in half of the Cajun spice mix and add more to taste.Reduce the heat to medium-low and return the chicken pieces to the pot. Let simmer gently until the chicken meat falls easily away from the bones, about 90 minutes. Remove the chicken pieces and let cool slightly. Return the sausage to the pot with the gumbo, and stir in the sliced okra. Shred the cooked chicken meat, discarding the skin and bones (or saving for a later use). Add the shredded chicken pieces back to the gumbo. Cook the gumbo for an additional hour or more, until the gumbo has reached your desired final consistency. Before serving, stir in the green onions and reserved bacon and sprinkle with the parsley. Serve over rice or with crusty bread.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

It's better stuffed

I love recipes that find replacements for pasta, and this recipe totally fit the bill. The flavor was amazing, I absolutely loved these. The Husband didn't like them quite as much as me, but that was alright because it left more for me to enjoy! The only change I made was to chop up the extra cabbage leaves and add them to the filling. It bulked up the filling and added even more veggies to the meal. :) Oh, and of course I used ground chicken instead of beef.

Stuffed Cabbage
from Pennies on a Platter

  • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1 medium head (about 2 pounds) green cabbage
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 cup cooked rice (white or brown)
  • 1/4 cup raisins (I use golden)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 can (16 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • sour cream, for serving (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13- by 9-inch pan with cooking spray or oil.

In a medium skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cut in a circle all around the stem of the cabbage and remove the core. Place the cabbage in the boiling water. After about 2 minutes an outside leaf will come loose--pull it off and out of the water using tongs. After another minute the next leaf will come loose. Remove and repeat until you have 8 to 10 leaves. Pat the leaves dry with paper towels. Cut out the thick part of the rib from the bottom of each leaf, but don't cut more than a third of the way into the leaf.

In a mixing bowl, combine the beef, cooled onion, rice, raisins, and salt. With the stem side of the cabbage leaf facing you, place 1/3-1/2 cup of the beef mixture in the center of each cabbage leaf. Fold the bottom edge over the mixture and then fold the sides over and roll into a tidy packet. Place the cabbage rolls, seam side down, in the prepared baking dish.

In a bowl, mix together the tomato sauce, broth, and paprika. Pour evenly over the cabbage rolls. Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour. Serve with sour cream if desired.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Crinkly cookies

I thought these looked like fun cookies, and they would look great on an assorted cookie plate around Christmastime. I didn't think these were outstanding, but they are a good solid "presentation" cookie.

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies

from Iowa Girl Eats


1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup vegetable oil

2 eggs

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup powdered sugar


1. In the bowl of a mixer (or in a medium-sized bowl) beat together cocoa, sugar, vanilla and vegetable oil. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until mixture is smooth. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Mix into wet ingredients in 3 batches, mixing until just combined in between each batch. Cover the dough and chill for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Scoop out 1 Tablespoon dough, roll it into a ball between your palms and roll in powdered sugar. Place on a non-stick sprayed, or parchment paper lined, baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes. Let cookies cool on the baking sheet for 2-3 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Here fishy, fishy

We are trying to add more fish to our diet, and when I came across this recipe I was super excited to try it. Sadly, we found this quite lackluster - the noodles looked so adorable and like they were going to taste great, but in the end they were just...blah. Still, if you think you might like this give it a try. We just aren't big fish-eaters, so maybe I'm already biased into not liking fish recipes. :P

Salmon Parmesan Lasagna Rollups
from Back to Her Roots

  • 12 ounces salmon fillets
  • 2 carrots, peeled and shredded
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan, divided
  • 3 tablespoons sliced green onions
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 12 whole grain lasagna noodles, cooked as directed
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Place salmon fillets, skin-side-down in a baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake in preheated oven for 8-10 minutes or until opaque and flaky. Set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan over low heat, mix together carrots, cream cheese, milk, dill, salt and pepper. Heat until cream cheese is melted. Stir in mozzarella and 1/4 cup Parmesan until melted. Remove from heat. Remove 1/2 cup of mixture and reserve. In saucepan, add green onions, breadcrumbs and salmon fillets. Stir until well-mixed and salmon is broken into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Place 2 tablespoons filling on the end of each lasagna noodle and roll up tightly. Place seam-side-down in an 11×13 baking dish coated with cooking spray. When all rolls are in dish, spoon reserved cheese mixture over rolls and top with remaining Parmesan. Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly.