Friday, January 30, 2009

Freezer Meals - Bean & Cheese Burritos

Recipe From:
I joined a freezer meal group. We each take a recipe and make it 8x. 4 hours (start to finish + clean up) and $47 later, I have 96+ burritos chillin' in the freezer. The recipe called for corn tortillas, but they are so small and always break, so I made the executive decision to use flour tortillas. My overall opinion is whether or not it is worth $5-6 for a bag of frozen burritos...or not. I made a bunch of comments to the original recipe in smaller text.Ingredients:
8 cups onion (chopped) I used 5 yellow onions
2 tbsp + 2 tsp garlic (minced) 5 huge cloves
120oz cans kidney beans (drained & rinsed) (8) 15oz cans
120oz cans pinto beans (drained & rinsed) (8) 15oz cans
32oz diced green chilies (4) 7oz & (1) 4oz
2 tbsp + 2 tsp cumin
2 tbsp + 2 tsp oregano
96 tortillas I used Guerrero flour tortillas (fajita size)
8-10 cups cheddar cheese I used (6) 8oz bars of reduced fat
6 cups taco sauce Only used about 3 cups
Have on Hand Ingredients:
Sour Cream
Shredded Lettuce

Assembly Directions:
In a medium saucepan, cook onion in water until tender. *I assumed this meant the garlic too...and I sauteed (instead of cooking in water) all garlic and onions in 1 tbsp butter for about 10-15 minutes. Drain & rinse all the beans and process in a food processor and/or hand mixer. Add onions, green chilies, cumin and oregano. Mix together. Soften tortillas in microwave or oven. *I cooked mine on a skillet because the Guerrero flour tortillas need a little cooking. Take a tortilla and evenly divide the mixture between all of them. Pour 1 tbsp of taco sauce on each and sprinkler with cheese. Wrap them burrito style. These came out a little smaller than I imagined. The tortilla can only hold so much before it is an unraveled mess. At the end, I had about 3 cups of mixture left and had a few leftover corn tortillas laying around, so I gave them a try. The first few were a disaster and fell apart. So, I grilled them on one side so they would hold their shape and the inside was still soft. They turned out well...but even smaller. I will put one corn in each bag so you can taste them and decide what you like better for next time.

Freezer Directions:
Place on a baking sheet seam side down. Freeze until solid. Place 12 burritos in a gallon freezer bag.

Serving Directions:
Thaw burritos. They can be warmed in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes or in the oven at 350 for 10 to 15 minutes. Do not bake too long or the tortillas will dry out. Serve on top of shredded lettuce with salsa and sour cream on top.

Pineapple Terriyaki Stirfry

Recipe From:Inspired by HEB marketplace chefs
Yes, I got suckered into buying the $6.99 jar of HEB gourmet sauce. I couldn't help it. I got Chile Lime Sauce & Pineapple Terriyaki Sauce both for $6.99. Come to find out the only ingredients in PT sauce are: soy sauce, pineapple concentrate, sugar, garlic & ginger...even I can do that! Next time, I'll be all the wiser. I cleaned out the fridge and found all kinds of great veggies for this stir fry.
1/2 bottle Pineapple Terriyaki Sauce (or see below)
1 chicken breast (thinly sliced)
1 zucchini
1 yellow squash
1 bunch broccoli
1/2 red onion
1 can waterchestnuts

Saute chicken in about a 1/4 cup sauce. Add onions, zucchini, squash, broccoli and water chestnuts. Cook until veggies are crisp tender. Serve over steamed rice.

Pineapple Terriyaki Sauce
compliments of Amy Griffeth
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/2 cup sugar or splenda

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Shrimp Enchiladas

Recipe From:
I am loving enchiladas lately. This recipe is really, really good. We halved the recipe in an 8x8 dish and got 7 enchiladas, which is just enough for us.
1/2 cup sweet red pepper (chopped)
1/2 cup green pepper (chopped)
1/2 cup onion (minced)
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp black pepper
3/4 cup whipping cream (I use less of this & more FF sour cream)
1 tbsp flour
3 cups Monterrey Jack cheese (shredded)
1/2 cup sour cream (I use fat free)
2 tbsp butter
1 1/2 pounds shrimp (peeled and deveined)
1/2 cup onion (chopped)
2 cups ripe tomatoes (chopped)
8 (9-inch) flour tortillas (I use Guerrero fajita size)

Saute red pepper, onion and green pepper in butter until crisp-tender. Add oregano, salt, garlic powder, pepper, cayenne pepper, cream and flour; blend well. Continue cooking for 3 minutes or until slightly thickened. Add 1 1/2 cups cheese; stir until melted. Add sour cream, stir to blend. Set aside.

In another skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Saute shrimp and 1/2 cup onion until shrimp are pink. Remove shrimp and chop; return to butter and onion. Add chopped tomatoes and 1/2 of the cheese sauce. Spoon 1/3 cup shrimp mixture into each tortilla. Sprinkle cheese on top of shrimp mixture. Roll up tightly. Arrange seam side down in a 9X13-inch glass baking dish. Spoon remaining cheese sauce over tortillas and sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Beef & Broccoli

Recipe From:
Next time I'll double the sauce and/or lessen the cornstarch...and use fresh ginger/garlic/onions instead of powdered. Also, instead of chunky peanut butter, I'll use reduced fat creamy.Ingredients
1/2 lb beef (thinly sliced)
2 cups broccoli (cut into small pieces)
1/2 cup water
1 tbsp chunky peanut butter
1 tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp vinegar
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp powdered ginger
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 tbsp oil

In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, peanut butter, water, cornstarch, vinegar, pepper, ginger, garlic powder, and onion powder. Mix well and set aside. Begin steaming the broccoli. In large skillet or wok, heat the oil. Add beef and cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes. Add the broccoli (already partially steamed), and cook for another 3-4 minutes (or until meat and broccoli are almost done), stirring constantly. Add the sauce and mix thoroughly, then continue to stir until the sauce thickens. Serve over steamed rice.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Honey-Lime Enchiladas

Recipe From: &
I guess this has changed a bunch from website to website. So, I also tweeked it a little. Blake doesn't normally appreciate enchiladas (or any Mexican food for that matter)...but we all loved these! Yes, even Sammie! I modified this recipe only to make about 7 enchiladas in a 8x8 dish. Ingredients:
1 chicken breast (boiled & shredded)
6-8 flour tortillas (I use Guerrero brand)
8oz monterey jack cheese (2%, shredded)
10oz can green enchilada sauce
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup sour cream (fat free)
2 tbsp cilantro (chopped)

6 tablespoons honey
3-4 limes (freshly squeezed juice)
1/2 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder

Boil the chicken and shred. Mix the honey, lime juice, chili powder and garlic together and toss with the shredded chicken. Let it marinate for at least 1/2 hour.

Pour about 1/2 of the enchilada sauce on the bottom of an 8x8 baking pan. I use Guerrero fajita tortillas, so first I cooked them on a skillet one at a time. Fill tortillas with chicken and cheese & place seam down in the dish. Mix the remaining enchilada sauce with the heavy cream, sour cream and leftover marinade. Pour sauce on top of the enchiladas and sprinkle with cheese (I didn't use all the sauce). Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes until brown and crispy on top. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve with cilantro-lim rice and black beans.

Cilantro-Lime Rice

Recipe From:
Blake doesn't seem to like this, but I love it.Ingredients:
2 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 cups rice
2 cups chicken broth
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1 large lime (juice and zest)
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

In a skillet, melt butter and add rice. Let cook for 1-2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients (except cilantro) and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and cook for 18-20 minutes. Add cilantro with a few minutes before done. Fluff with fork and serve.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Bourbon Chicken

Recipe from: Blog Chef
I added the green beans to the recipe.

2 chicken breasts (cut into 1" pieces)
1 lb fresh green beans
2 tbsp oil (separated)
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 garlic clove (minced)
1 tbsp ginger (minced)

1/2 cup water
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup apple juice
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp cider vinegar
1/4 - 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

Cut chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces, and lightly dust with cornstarch. Heat oil in your wok and fry chicken bits in batches until lightly browned. Drain on paper towels and set aside.

Steam green beans. In a bowl combine all sauce ingredients. Heat oil in skillet and saute garlic and ginger. Pour sauce into skillet and bring to a boil. Add chicken bits back to the pan, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add steamed green beans and coat with sauce. Serve over rice.

Cocorico - Roasted Chicken

Recipe From:
Michelle & Ray gave us the NapaStyle Cocorico Roaster a few years ago. After watching Ray use it a couple of times, I finally tried it! A little too much work for me, but it is sure pretty!Ingredients:
1 whole chicken
3 lemons
Fresh herbs: Rosemary, sage, thyme
Potatoes & Carrots

1 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup juice from fresh lemon (don't discard lemon rinds)

Soak cocorico pan in water for 1/2 hour. Boil potatoes and carrots until just slightly cooked...they will fully cook while chicken is roasting. Place all ingredients in a bowl. Whisk with a wire whisk until ingredients are incorporated well—the marinade should have a smooth and creamy consistency.

Preheat oven to 425°. Clean chicken well and pat dry. Stuff cavities with lemon rinds and fresh herbs. Place bird on the cone. Place the potatoes and carrots in the dish area. Pour marinade over chicken and veggies. Add cracked pepper and remaining herbs to the top of each chicken.

Place an oven thermometer in each chicken and cover with aluminum foil. Place on the lower rack of the oven. Bake for 1 1/2 hours, then remove the aluminum foil. Baste with a basting bulb. Keep basting often, ever 15 minutes until the thermometer reads 180°.

BBQ Pork Ribs

Recipe From: My Kitchen Cafe
I should have made twice as much...Blake loves ribs.

2 lbs. pork ribs
steak seasoning
1/4 cup chili sauce
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1/8 cup brown sugar
1/4-1/2 tsp allspice

Season ribs with the steak seasoning and place in a slow cooker. Cook on low for 7 hours. Remove ribs from slow cooker (this may be done one day in advance). If preparing ribs one day prior to serving, place in a single layer in a glass dish. Let cool slightly before covering and refrigerating.

For the BBQ sauce, mix all remaining ingredients in a small bowl until well blended (I also mixed the BBQ sauce a day in advance and refrigerated to give the flavors a chance to blend). Grill ribs over medium heat 10-12 minutes to heat through. Turn the ribs often and baste with sauce frequently.

Sweet & Sour Chicken w/ Pineapple & Red Onion

Recipe From: My Kitchen Cafe
We really liked the sauce on this one.
Stir Fry Ingredients:
2 chicken breasts (thinly sliced)
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium red onion (long, thin strips)
20oz can pineapple tidbits
3 medium scallions (green parts: ¼" lengths & white parts: minced)
1 tbsp garlic (minced)
1 tbsp fresh ginger (minced)
1 recipe sweet and sour stir-fry sauce (see below)

Toss the chicken with the soy sauce and vinegar in a medium bowl; set aside for 15 minutes, tossing once or twice.

Heat skillet over high heat for 3 to 4 minutes (the pan should be so hot you can hold an outstretched hand 1 inch over the pan for only 3 seconds.) Add 1 tablespoon oil and swirl it so the oil evenly coats the bottom of the pan. Heat the oil until it just starts to shimmer and smoke. Check the heat with your hand as before.

Drain the chicken and add it to the pan. Stir-fry until seared and about three-quarters cooked, 2 ½ to 3 minutes. Scrape the cooked chicken and all of the liquid into a bowl. Cover and keep warm.

Let the pan come back up to temperature, 1 to 2 minutes. When it is hot, drizzle in 2 teaspoons oil. When the oil just starts to smoke, add the onions and stir-fry until just tender-crisp, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the pineapple and cook 1 minute. Add the scallion greens and cook 15 to 30 seconds.

Clear the center of the pan and add the white parts of the scallions, garlic, and ginger. Drizzle with ½ teaspoon oil. Mash into the pan with the back of a spatula. Cook until fragrant but not colored, about 10 seconds. Remove the pan from heat and stir the scallions, garlic, and ginger into the vegetables for 20 seconds.

Return the pan to the heat and add the cooked chicken. Stir in the sauce and stir-fry until the ingredients are well coated with sauce and sizzling hot, about 1 minute. Serve immediately with rice.

Sweet and Sour Stir Fry Sauce Ingredients
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
3 tbsp sugar (I used splenda)
1 ½ tbsp tomato sauce
1 ½ tbsp pineapple juice
¼ tsp salt

Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. We doubled this recipe so Sammie could have extra for "dip."

Ham & Pasta Skillet

Recipe From:
Great recipe for leftover ham from Christmas.
1 box shell pasta
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter
3 cups fully cooked ham (diced)
1 large sweet red pepper (diced)
1/2 medium onion (chopped)
1/4 cup fresh parsley (minced)
2 garlic cloves (minced)
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 tbsp lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese (shredded)

Cook pasta according to package directions - only cooking until al dente since pasta will continue to cook and soak up liquid when added to the skillet.

While the pasta is cooking, in a large skillet, heat butter and olive oil over medium heat until butter is melted. Add pepper, onion, and garlic and cook until vegetables are tender, about 4-6 minutes.

Add ham, basil and oregano and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for another 2-3 minutes. Stir in broth (or stock) and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes or until liquid is reduced by half (at first it looks like it will be way to "brothy" but never fear, if you are patient, it will reduce!).

Stir drained pasta into ham and vegetable mixture (I cooked a full pound of pasta but only added about 3/4 of the cooked pasta to the skillet so the other ingredients weren't lost). Add 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and toss. Sprinkle parsley and remaining Parmesan cheese over the top of the pasta. Serve immediately.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Orange Chicken

Recipe From: My Kitchen Cafe
Really yummy sauce!
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 2" cubes
1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons oil or butter

1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon finely minced ginger
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons green onion
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 cup water

Heat oven to 350. In a shallow dish combine the flour, garlic powder and pepper. Dip each piece of chicken in flour mixture and coat evenly.

Pour oil (or melt butter and pour) in a shallow baking dish, large enough to accommodate chicken in a single layer. Arrange chicken in pan and bake uncovered for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan combine water, fresh orange juice, rice vinegar, soy sauce, orange zest and whisk over medium heat for a few minutes. Then stir in brown sugar, ginger, garlic, and green onion and let it come to a boil. Combine cornstarch with water and let it dissolve and add it to the sauce until thickened.

After chicken has baked the 30 minutes, turn each piece over and pour 1/2 sauce mixture evenly over chicken. Bake another 30 to 40 minutes basting frequently.

Serve chicken over rice and steamed broccoli with extra sauce on the side.