Friday, October 28, 2011

Tofu Parmisiana

The first time I made Tofu Parmisiana was not long after I got married. I didn't tell my hubby what he was eating, just asked him if he liked it and if he wanted me to make it again. He told me it was great and that of course I could make it again. Then I made the mistake of telling him he was eating tofu. He put his fork down and pushed back his plate and told me to NEVER make it again. Apparently I didn't listen too well. Before he ate it the next time I told him what he was eating. And he ate it! The kids were split. Half of them loved it, the other half didn't care for it too much, but I think it was more the texture they didn't like.

2 eggs
1 cup flour
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
5 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons dried oregano, divided
salt to taste
ground black pepper to taste
1 (12 ounce) package firm tofu
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 jar pasta sauce
4 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese

In a small bowl, combine bread crumbs, 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, 1 teaspoon oregano, salt, and black pepper. Place flour in another small bowl, and eggs, beaten, in a third small bowl. Slice tofu into 1/4 inch thick slices, and place on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes at 350. Remove from oven and, one at a time, dip in flour, then egg then press tofu slices into crumb mixture, turning to coat all sides. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Cook tofu slices until crisp on one side. Drizzle with a bit more olive oil, turn, and brown on the other side. Place a thin layer of sauce in an 8 inch square baking pan. Arrange tofu slices in the pan. Spoon remaining sauce over tofu. Top with shredded mozzarella and remaining 3 tablespoons Parmesan. Bake at 400 degrees F (205 degrees C) for 20 minutes.

Recipe adapted from All Recipes.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Green Tomato Salsa Verde

I had a bunch of green tomatoes sitting in my garden (box) that I just didn't have the heart to let freeze, so I picked them. After I picked them, I decided to make Green Tomato Salsa Verde. YUM!!! I had enough (along with the donation of a sweet neighbor :)) to make 7 batches of Green Tomato Salsa Verde! I had to defrost my freezer in order to make it all fit. That was a chore but well worth being able to freeze this amazing salsa verde.

We ate some with chips and crackers dipped in it and then some with shredded chicken over rice. I will also use it for Chicken Enchiladas, Green Chile Chicken Chili and more.

2 pounds firm, green tomatoes, cored and quartered
1 medium-sized yellow onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 green jalapeƱo chilies (for a medium-hot salsa) or serrano chilies (for a hotter salsa), stems (and, if preferred, seeds) removed, quartered
3 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon honey or sugar
1/3 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped

Combine the green tomatoes, onion, chili peppers, garlic, salt, cumin, and water in a stock pot. Bring to a boil and cook covered on a medium-low heat burner for approximately ten minutes, stirring occasionally. Add more water only if needed to maintain the most minimal broth. Stir in and simmer for an additional five minutes the lemon zest, lemon juice, honey (or sugar), and cilantro. Taste the mixture and adjust the seasoning, if needed, by adding more lemon juice, honey, and/or salt, to taste. Allow mixture to cool until it is warm and spoon the mixture (in batches if necessary) into the container of a food processor or blender and pulse until the salsa reaches the consistency you prefer, either chunky or a smooth puree. Makes approximately one quart of salsa, which should be stored in the refrigerator or freezer. This recipe may be doubled or tripled.

Recipe adapted from Modern Comfort Food.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Cheesy Creamed Tuna on Toast

Growing up my mom would make Creamed Tuna on Toast quite often for a quick, after church meal on Sunday. I decided to give it a whirl for lunch after church, but with a little twist. Remember that massively HUGE box of Velveeta? Well I threw some in, just for good measure. :) The kids all really enjoyed lunch, especially when I told them it was "Farm Food".

1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup flour
3 cups milk
1/4 pound Velveeta, cut into cubes
Salt and pepper to taste
2 (5 oz) cans tuna, drained (I use albacore - it's less fishy tasting)
10 sliced buttered toast

Melt butter in a sauce pan over medium low heat, then stir in flour to make a paste. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly. Increase heat to medium and add Velveeta and salt and pepper to taste. Continue whisking and cook until thick and cheese is melted. Add tuna and stir until well combined. Serve over buttered toast.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Orange Julius

My kids love Orange Julius and call it "those orange shake things". Very sophisticated, I know. That's okay, though. I love them just the way they are, with all their unsophisticatedness (that's my new word for the day) and all. I guess I would like them to be a little cleaner, you know, pick up after themselves and all. Even if they don't pick up after themselves, I do believe I will keep them just the same. They are rather nice to look at and even provide countless moments of joy and laughter. Yup, I do believe I will keep them.

6 ounces frozen orange juice concentrate (that's half the can. Do NOT attempt to double the batch in you blender - unless, of course, you have a monstrously HUGE blender)
3/4 cup water
1 cup milk
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups ice

Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth. My blender takes less than 30 seconds. It is a WAY cool industrial smoothie making blender (thanks sweet hubby!).

Monday, October 17, 2011

Egg Drop Soup

This is a SUPER quick and easy soup. I only make Egg Drop Soup once in a great while, so it is always a treat for the kids. They think it is cool that you can have eggs in soup.

I served my Egg Drop Soup with Pork Egg Rolls and Noodle Stir Fry. Yumm-O!

4 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
2 eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons green onions, chopped

In a medium pot slowly heat chicken broth and cornstarch. Stir constantly until thickened. Pour beaten egg into soup and stir once around the pot very gently in order to break up the egg (as you can see in the picture, I got a little stir happy.....). Remove from heat immediately. Garnish with green onions.

Recipe from????? I have had this one for what seems like forever.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Cheesy Taco Skillet

Remember my way big, 2 pound box of Velveeta? Well, here is another way I used it.

I really love it when I make something for dinner and don't have a single complaint. Even better when I still don't have a single complaint the next day when we have it for dinner again. This is one of those meals. Can you hear the heavenly angels singing?

4 cups hot, cooked rice
1 pound ground beef
1 package taco seasoning
1/2 pound Velveeta
1 (15 oz) can corn, drained
1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes - don't drain
Crushed tortilla chips
Sour cream
Shredded cheese

Brown beef in a large skillet. Once browned, stir in tomatoes and Velveeta and cook, stirring occasionally, until Velveeta is melted. Add taco seasoning and corn and mix until combined. Stir in rice. Serve topped with toppings of your choice.

Recipe from The Royal Cook - an original!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Santa Fe Pasta Skillet

I had a 2 pound box of Velveeta (now that's a LOT of Velveeta!) that was begging to be used. Not literally, more like the little voice that sometimes pops into my head and gives me great ideas (and sometimes even not-so-great ideas). According to the family, this was one of the great ideas. My picky 10 year old said it was very, very delicious, but a little spicy. The hubby said "This is great. I could even eat it again." That is about the best compliment that comes from him.

1 (12 oz) box rotini pasta, cooked and drained (I used the garden variety)
1/2 pound Velveeta, cut into cubes
1 (10.75 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 (10 oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilies (I used Rotel)
1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained
2 cup cooked and diced chicken
2 cups frozen corn (or a 15 oz can)

Combine cream of chicken soup, Velveeta cubes and tomatoes in a large skillet. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until Velveeta is melted. Add beans, corn, chicken and noodles and cook 5 minutes or until heated through.

Recipe from The Royal Cook - an original!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Herb Focaccia Bread

I love bread! I can't think of a recipe I haven't liked. This Herb Focaccia Bread is no different - it's delicious! I usually make it to go along with pasta and then dip it in a mix of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Yum!!

I served this tasty Herb Focaccia Bread along with my Pasta with Garden Fresh Tomato Sauce.

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 pinch ground black pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon grated parmesan cheese
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese

In a large bowl stir together flour, salt, sugar, yeast, garlic powder, oregano, thyme, basil and black pepper. Mix in the vegetable oil and water. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place for 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 450. Punch dough down and place on greased baking sheet. Pat into a 1/2 inch thick rectangle. Brush top with olive oil. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Pasta with Garden Fresh Tomato Sauce

After 6 years of threatening, I am proud to report I have a garden (box)! I love fresh veggies grown from my very own garden! This year was not the greatest year for a garden (at least not for my garden). I managed to grow 1 cucumber (yes, you read that right. 1 as in one, or uno), 5 yellow squash and 10 zucchini. Really!! How in the world to you manage to contain zucchini growth to 10? I was hoping to be overrun by zucchini, but apparently I know a trick (not that I know what that trick is) that a lot of people would love to know. Hmmmm.

Anyway, I went on a trip with my momma for a week and half and my sweet little helpers decided to pick the ripe tomatoes from my garden (box)and they just sat and sat on the counter until I got home. I don't know how they managed to stay around that long with all the tomato lovers in my house, but they did. When I saw all (about 8 smallish....) the lovely tomatoes I had, I decided to make this very tasty, fresh sauce.

6 medium tomatoes (I used 8 smallish 'cause that's what I had)
6 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried basil
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (we like it mild at our house and this seemed to be a bit much for some)
1 teaspoon salt
1 pound pasta
Parmesan cheese

Core tomatoes and tear into bite sized pieces directly into serving bowl. Add spices and oil. Lightly crush together and let sit at room temperature for 1 to 8 hours (make it in the morning and eat it for dinner!) When ready to eat, cook pasta, drain, and add to tomato mixture. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

Recipe from an old ward cookbook.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Chocolate Caramel Cereal Bars

I think I bought too many boxes of Honey Nut Cheerios. What makes me think that? Well, I have about 10 boxes (16 to be exact.....) that say they are best if used by this month. Yep, I think I bought too many. In my attempt to use some up in a way other than swimming in milk and eaten with a spoon, I decided to make treats. And pretty tasty treats, too. The kids all loved them. But then, you really can't go wrong with caramel and chocolate. Yummo!

The handsome little guy loved them!

6 cups Honey Nut Cheerios® cereal
1 bag (14 oz) vanilla caramels, unwrapped
3 tablespoons water
2 cups miniature marshmallows
1/2 cup semisweet or milk chocolate chocolate chips
1 tablespoon shortening
1/4 cup miniature candy-coated semisweet chocolate baking bits

Spray bottom and sides of 13x9-inch pan with cooking spray. Place cereal in large bowl; set aside. In medium microwavable bowl, microwave unwrapped caramels and water uncovered on High 2 minutes 30 seconds to 4 minutes, stirring after each minute, until mixture is smooth. Remove from microwave. Pour caramel mixture over cereal in bowl; stir until cereal is evenly coated. Gently stir in marshmallows. Pour cereal mixture into pan. With buttered back of spoon, press mixture in pan until even. In small microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips and shortening uncovered on High 1 to 2 minutes, stirring after each minute, until mixture is smooth. Drizzle chocolate over top of cereal mixture. Sprinkle baking bits evenly over chocolate. Refrigerate until mixture is firm and glaze is set, about 1 hour.

Recipe from Betty Crocker

Shared with Show Me What Ya Got #43 and The Little Birdie Blog.
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