This mom loves to cook

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Hello! I'm Deirdre and I'm a stay at home mom to two boys. Cooking for a 6 and 4 year old- day in and day out can be the best job in the world, also the most frustrating. Trying to create not only kid friendly but husband and mom friendly meals is a challenge that I've readily accepted! My Foodie Mom blog is a record of the different recipes that I've tried in the kitchen, pictures of my ventures, and cool tricks I've picked up along the way. Cheers!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Crunch Wrap Supremes At Home



Ok, come on. We all love the occasional fast food. This is no secret. I'm not going to sit here and say, " I never eat fast food."- "I never eat out." Those are lies, and no one is that good. I do cook at home the majority of the time, but one of my favorite take out pleasures is the crunch wrap supreme from taco bell. So yummy, and perfect, wrapped up in its own delicious package. However, clocking in at a whopping 540 calories (That's how many calories a full dinner should be), I knew there had to be a better way. 

I've seen these tutorials on Pinterest for a while now, on how to make your own crunch wrap at home- and last night was the night. Hubs found the corn tostadas (a crunchy taco shell but flat) at Shaw's, and the challenge was on. If you have all the ingredients set up ahead of time, these were super fast to make. And the folding wasn't all that difficult either. I thought it was going to be hard, but nope- easy as pie.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 10 inch burrito style flour tortillas
  • corn tostadas
  • shredded cheddar cheese (or you can use nacho sauce or cheese sauce)
  • sour cream
  • shredded lettuce
  • diced tomatos
  • cooked meat of choice ( we had left over pork so thats what we used, you can do ground beef with taco seasoning, shredded chicken- the options are endless)
  • butter or margarine 
  • salsa or hot sauce (optional on side)
Heat a skillet over med/ high heat.

Lay the flour tortilla down.


Put your cheese down.


Then your meat.


Lay the corn tostada on top of the meat and cheese.


Spread the sour cream on top of the corn tostada.


Add the diced tomatoes.


Then the shredded lettuce.


I added a little more cheese after, then you want to fold it all up. Fold a little of the tortilla over at a time, to create a pinwheel shape.


Spread a little bit of butter on the folded side, and place folded side down in the heated skillet. Toast for about 45 seconds until golden brown. Butter the top side, then flip the whole thing over and toast for an additional 30-45 seconds until both sides are golden brown.


There you have it. We ate ours with some more sour cream with fresh cilantro, and mango salsa on the side of dipping. This was an easy weeknight dinner, so we just had some sweet chili Doritos, and green grapes on the side. 

I will be making these again for sure. You can totally prep everything ahead of time, and bang out a lot of these guys to serve a crowd- or just your family for dinner. Try it out and save yourself some calories and money by getting take out. Cheers!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Black Bean and Mushroom Veggie Burgers


Another Meatless Monday installment from last night! Some fantastic and pretty meat like veggie burgers. Usually when I make a veggie burger I have a specific recipe that I follow. Not this time, I completely winged it myself and the results were pretty awesome. Even Mike said they had a great meat like consistency. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 10z can of cooked black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup fresh baby bella mushrooms
  • 1/2 jalapeño (remove seeds for milder spice)
  • 1/4 cup onion
  • 1/4 cup italian bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 2 teaspoons crushed walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon steak sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 small can of mushrooms 
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons cajun seasoning
  • american cheese and pepper jack cheese
  • 2 table spoons butter and olive oil for frying
  • Wheat buns
  • Lettuce, Red onion, Tomato and Dijon mustard for toppings
Combine 1/2 of the black beans, baby bellas, jalapeño, onion, egg, breadcrumbs, panko in a food processor. Pulse until well combined. Add in the rest of the black beans and just give a little pulse until slightly broken up. 

Empty mixture into a bowl, and add canned mushrooms, worcestershire sauce, steak sauce, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine. Refrigerate for an hour.

Heat up 1/2 the butter and olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.

On a plate combine flour and cajun seasoning. Make mixture into desired sized patties and lightly dredge in the flour mixture on both sides. 

Place burgers into heated skillet and fry for about 2-3 minutes on each side- until browned. Transfer to a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Repeat until all of the patties are fried. 

Place a little american and pepper jack cheese on each patty.

Lightly butter the inside of the buns, and place them butter side up on the baking pan with the patties. 

Broil for 3-5 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly and the buns are nicely browned. Don't forget about them! The buns will go from toasted to burnt very quickly.

I served these with lettuce, red onion, tomato and dijon mustard ( Mike used ketchup too). I should have taken a picture with all of the ingredients on it, but we were to excited to eat them. If you're looking for a burger that eat like a burger but with no meat, try this one out. Next time I think I'll add a whole jalapeño instead of just the 1/2 - the spice kind of got lost in there. The walnuts were a great addiction for texture. The whole feel of it was super earthy tasting and just yummy. I'd say guilt free, but they were fried. Cheers!

Broccoli and Cheddar Stuffed Chicken


I love making chicken this way! One of my favorite things to make is my Jalapeño Popper Chicken. I stuffed these guys with a ton of steamed broccoli, shredded cheddar and velveeta slices. The velveeta ended up mostly melting out , so maybe next time I'll stick with just the shredded cheese- but with the amount of broccoli I put in, it was a great guilt free dish.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 package this sliced chicken breasts
  • 1 head of broccoli, steamed broken into small pieced and seasoned with salt and pepper
  • 4-6 small slices of velveeta cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar
  • olive oil
  • italian seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper
  • tooth picks
First you want to flatted the chicken breasts out a little more. It makes it easier for rolling. Place 1 piece at a time into a large ziplock bag, pound out with a mallet or rolling pin. Be careful not to break the chicken apart.

Slice lemon in half and In a small dish juice the lemon and add a little olive oil and salt and pepper.

In another small dish add bread crumbs.

Once all of the chicken is flattened, place one piece on a plate. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle a little of the shredded cheese, followed by some steamed broccoli, and then a small slice of velveeta.


Roll the chicken and fillings up as tight as you can, make sure to keep everything tucked into the chicken. Toothpick the sides to make sure nothing falls out.

Dunk chicken into the lemon juice and oil. Then Roll in breadcrumbs. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. 

Repeat steps with the rest of chicken, and filling ingredients.

Bake at 325 for 25-30 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. 












You can use this method with pretty much any ingredients you think of for the filling. It's also a fun way to get the kids to eat some more veggies. Next time I really want to try an apple and brie filling. Cheers!

Cheese Stuffed Bacon Wrapped Hot Dogs



I made a few of these the other night for the kids. All they wanted were regular hot dogs with ketchup, so they weren't received as well as I had hoped. Better for adults, I ended up eating half of one, and it was fricken awesome. Next time, I will probably bake them in the oven, for a more even doneness with the bacon. Frying them on the stove didn't work to well. I used a grated grill pan instead of a regular skillet. So I'm led to believe a flat surface for frying would have had a more even cook on the bacon. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • Hot Dogs
  • String cheese (cut in half)
  • Bacon
  • Tooth picks
Cut a slit along the top of the hot dogs.


Stuff with 1/2 of string cheese.


Wrap in bacon, try to completely cover the hole with the cheese so it doesn't burn or melt out, and tooth pick bacon in place.


Either cook on stove top, or bake at 350 in oven, until the bacon is completely cooked.



Pretty easy, I'm glad I finally tried doing this. It was something I've been wanting to try for a while now. I would save this for the adults though, the kids were kind of disappointed when I gave them these instead of a plain hot dog. Cheers!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Lemon Pork Chops with Mushrooms and Onions


Made this last night with sriracha broccoli and peanuts, and some plain egg noodles on the side. These are some of the most juiciest pork chops I have ever cooked. And actually, pretty damn easy to do, too.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 boneless pork chops 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick
  • A few pinches of salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup flour 
  • 1 lemon
  • 4 oz sliced mushrooms
  • 1/2 sliced onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced 
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
Heat skillet over medium high heat with olive oil and butter.

Season pork chops both sides with salt and pepper.

On a plate, place flour- and zest your whole lemon over the flour and mix together. I use a cheese grater when I zest. Keep the lemon aside.

Press both sides of the pork chops into the zested flour and place into pan. Cook about 4-5 minutes on both sides until golden brown. Remove pork chops from the pan, and set aside on a plate.

Allow pan to cool for a minute or two and reduce heat down to medium low.

Add in mushrooms and sautee for 3-4 minutes.

Add in Onions, and cook for an additional 3 minutes until starting to brown.

Add in minced garlic and cook for another minute.

Add in chicken stock and bring to a boil, scrape the bottom of the pan to release all of that stuck on goodness.

Let reduce for about 5-10 minutes until sauce thickens a little bit.

Cut your lemon in half, and being mindful of the seeds, squeeze lemon juice into the pan.

Add the pork chops back and combine all of the flavors together flipping the pork chips once to get juice on it. 

Slice the lemon in 4ths (mindful of seeds) and place in the pan with pork chops, mushrooms and onions to extract a little more flavor. Then Serve.


These pork chops were seriously amazing. Especially mixed together with the sriracha broccoli that I made. Make this recipe and you will not be disappointed!


Sriracha Broccoli and Peanuts


I made a batch of this awesome broccoli last night. It just popped up in my Pinterest and I knew I had to make this along side my lemon pork chops with mushrooms and onions

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 heads of broccoli (increase all ingredients by the amount of broccoli you want to cook)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons sriracha ( decrease or increase to the amount of spice you want)
  • a little salt and pepper
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup honey roasted peanuts (smash in a baggie)
Throw all of your ingredients into a big gallon ziplock bag, and shake to combine everything.

Preheat oven to 400

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and spread broccoli evenly throughout.

Bake at 400 for 15 minutes, turning once half way.


And there you've got it! One of the easiest, most flavorful broccoli recipes I've ever come across. I served this with my Lemon pork chops with mushrooms and onions. Tossed about a 1/2 cup of egg noodles with this and it was the perfect dinner! Cheers!



Adapted from: sriracha broccoli





Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Cheesy Chicken Parmesan Skillet



I made a really basic marinara sauce last week to go with some meatballs, and I still had a good amount of sauce left yesterday. Not wanting it to go to waste, I decided to throw together something I have never done before, a pasta skillet version of chicken parm. The idea came to me when I saw a recipe for chicken parmesan soup online, and it just got into my head that I wanted to do some sort of take on that. I looked up a few versions of this recipe, but for the most part I pretty much just winged it. I do have to say though, this came out pretty damn good. So good in fact, I think I will make this again some day. The only thing I will probably do differently is cook the pasta to al dente separately then combine it with the other ingredients at the end. The pasta did break down a little bit from being cooked in the sauce and stirred. Other than that, this was a total win. The cheese blend was great, and the addition of the ricotta made it that much better.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 3 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 4 cups of water
  • 1 box (16oz) dried rigatoni pasta
  • olive oil
  • 1 (10oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups tomato sauce
  • 3 minced cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups of ricotta
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
First we want to make our shredded chicken, we need 1 cup of the chicken broth from this to proceed with the rest of the recipe. Throw the chicken in a pot with approximately 3 cups water (just enough to cover the chicken). Add in the 3 bouillon cubes, cover and cook over medium/ high heat for about 15 minutes. Until the chicken is cooked through and no longer pink in the middle. Remove the chicken from the pot, set aside to cool. Keep the chicken broth aside too.

Heat a large oven safe skillet over medium high heat, once it heats up add in some olive oil. Add oregano, red pepper, garlic powder and garlic. Cook 1-2 minutes until the garlic gets fragrant.

Stir in the tomato sauce, 1 cup of water, 1 cup of chicken broth and the pasta. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer, cover and cook for about 20 minutes- until the pasta is tender.


Take the cooled chicken and shred it by hand.


In a small bowl mix the ricotta, egg yolk and a little salt and pepper together.

Once the pasta is tender, stir in the ricotta, shredded chicken, 1/4 cup of mozzarella and 1/4 cup grated parmesan. Make sure everything is combined well. Top with remaining 1/4 mozz and 1/2 parm cheese on top. 


Broil in the oven for 2-5 minutes or until cheese is browned and bubbly.


All and all not bad for the first time trying this. I would try cooking the pasta separately though because it did fall apart, and didn't hold up well for leftovers today. The flavor was there though, and the shredded chicken was perfect and tender in this dish. Cheers!

Ollie eating his corn first 
Maxx digging in




Adapted from: chicken parm skillet

Corned Beef and Cabbage (my take on boiled dinner)


So of course, I just had to make some corned beef and cabbage this past weekend for St. Patricks day. It's one of Mike's absolute favorite meals, me - eh I can do without. I wanted to do something a little different than the traditional way my mom always did it so, I tried!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 corned beef with spice packet (the one we used was a smaller about 3 pounds)
  • 1 large can of Guinness
  • 3 medium parsnips
  • 3 medium carrots
  • 3 minced cloves of garlic
  • 1 head of cabbage
  • 3-4 medium red potatoes cut into quarters
  • 2 tablespoons whole grain dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • butter
Place corned beef into crock pot with spices that comes with it, along with the beer. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.

A half hour before the corned beef will be gone, cut up the carrots, parsnips, garlic and cabbage and place into a large pot. Cover with water, and boil until all of the veggies are fork tender. Drain the water and leave the veggies in the pot, add in a few teaspoons of butter- salt and pepper to taste and stir. Set aside.

Take the corned beef out of the crock pot, rinse off any spices that are on it and place into a shallow baking dish. Strain the beer and juices of the spices from the crock pot into a small sauce pan. Add in brown sugar, mustard, worcestershire sauce and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and reduce by half (about 15 minutes). 

Pour 3/4 sauce on corned beef and bake at 400 for 10 minutes, then pour a little of the remaining sauce into the boiled veggies and stir.

Serve corned beef over the boiled veggies.

This is just what you would expect a boiled dinner to be. If you like it, you know you will like it- and if it's just not for you, than you probably already know it. I only make it once a year- and that is plenty for me. My husband on the other hand… he wishes he could eat it more often. Cheers!

Shepard's Pie


We had a very Irish weekend a few days ago. Having friends over for a yummy feast- we decided to make shepard's pie. Mike insisted that we use lamb in it- and since I really don't like lamb, I opted for a 50 50 compromise. This came out really good, although next time I think I'd want to make the meat with a thicker gravy/ sauce. The meat was kind of just chilling on the bottom with not to much moisture- so I think a nice gravy would have been perfect for this.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 1/2 cup of Guinness beer
  • 1 teaspoon oregano 
  • 1 teaspoon thyme
  • 3 medium carrots peeled and diced
  • 3 medium parsnips peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks celery diced small
  • 2 cans of corn or 2 cups frozen corn
  • 8 oz sliced baby portobellos
  • 1 large onion diced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • olive oil
  • ingredients for my cheddar chive mashed potatoes
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
In a large cast iron skillet heat up a little olive oil and add in lamb and beef along with oregano and thyme and Guinness. Cook until browned, drain the fat and 1/2 the juices out and set aside.

In a saute pan, start cooking carrots- celery- and parsnips together over high heat. season with salt and pepper. Cook until the veggies are browned and are all the way cooked through, mix in with the cooked meat. Set aside.

In the same sauté pan you just cooked the other veggies in, heat a little olive oil, add in the mushrooms and onions along with some salt and pepper. Cook until mushrooms start to soften up then add in the canned corn. Check the seasoning  and set aside.

During the time when you are doing all of these steps - you should make your cheddar chive mashed potatoes.

Assemble in a 9x13 baking dish, meat on the bottom- followed by sautéed veggies- finally top with the mashed potatoes and additional shredded cheddar cheese.

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.


This was the first time and I ever wrote a blog post for shepard's pie. My sister in law Taylor make hers with pie crust, and that is always super yummy. We usually just use beef and corn. So this was definitely a heartier and may I say - a more traditional way to go (because of the ground lamb). Like I said earlier, I would like to have a little bit of a thicker bottom layer with a gravy of some sort, but this was a pretty good effort if I do say so. Cheers!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spicy Sausage Mac and Cheese


I made this last week, and put it this way: After my sister Tara and friend Kristy tried it, they asked for the recipe and they both made it the next night. This is how phenomenal it was. I adjusted the original recipe just a little bit, but stuck pretty close to the original one I read. Like most of my recipes, omit the sausage and you have an awesome veggie mac and cheese. Kristy did hers with diced ham and broccoli instead of sausage. Next time I make this I'm think I'm going to do totally veggie with maybe some cherry tomatoes and mushrooms. I was also thinking of shredded chicken and broccoli. The possibilities are endless- because this is just an awesomely yummy base dish to add whatever you want to it.

INGREDIENTS:
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb smoked sausage, sliced
  • 1 diced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes in 2 cups of water to make broth
  • 1 (10 oz) can Ro-Tel tomatoes and green chiles, Mild
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 8 oz cavatappi pasta (you can use whatever you have on hand)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper- or to taste
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup cubed velvetta cheese
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced scallions
Heat olive oil over medium high heat in a skillet, when it heats up add in the onions and sliced sausage sauté until they start to brown, then add in minced garlic. Cook for about a minute, until it becomes fragrant.


Add in broth, tomatos, milk, salt and pepper, and pasta- bring to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer for about 15 minutes- until the pasta is cooked.


Remove from heat and stir in the velvetta and 1/4 cup of shredded cheddar until the cheese is melted.

Transfer to a baking dish (or keep in the skillet if it is oven safe). Sprinkle with the remaining 3/4 shredded cheese. Broil in the oven for about 3-5 minutes until the cheese is melted and starts to brown. Remove from oven- sprinkle with green onions and serve.



This was my sister Tara's 
This was Kristy's


This was way to easy to be so damn flavorful. I'm so going to make this again this week with a few different ingredients. I highly recommend you trying this one out!  Cheers!




Adapted from:spicy sausage pasta


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Shrimp and Veggie Alfredo


In a lot of my dishes there's usually one ingredient that can be omitted to make a fantastic vegetarian dish. In this case, leave out the shrimp (unless there is a Pescetarian present) for a completely veggie dish. This sauce came out awesome, and the veggies I used together are one of my favorite combos. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 pound peeled, deveined shrimp with tails removed
  • 2 tablespoons creole seasoning
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • 8 oz sliced mushrooms
  • 1 cup chopped broccoli
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups grated parm cheese
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup of onion diced
  • additional 1 tablespoon creole seasoning
  • 1 package of linguine
Set up all ingredients on the counter. Cut up veggies ahead of time, and have everything measured out, because this is a fast process.

Toss shrimp in 1 tablespoon creole seasoning and set aside.

Put on your water to boil pasta, salt the water. Cook pasta according to directions, while you are making the sauce.

Add olive oil and butter to a skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and garlic powder cook for 2 minutes, add broccoli- cook for 2 minutes more. Add 1/2 the onions cook for an additional 2 minutes- Then add in the shrimp. Cook about 5 minutes or until the shrimp turn pink. 

Add in cream, and the rest of the creole seasoning. Bring to a simmer then reduce heat to medium low. Add the cheese, egg yolks and tomatoes. Keep the heat low to keep the eggs from curdling. 

When the sauce has thickened (about 5 minutes), add in the other 1/2 of the chopped onions and the cooked pasta. Toss the pasta in the sauce until evenly coated.

This is my new way of cooking Alfredo sauce, for sure! This was super easy and took less than 45 minutes to complete everything. Cheers!









Spinach, Artichoke and Mushroom Casserole


My second Meatless Monday meal! Last week I did zucchini and quinoa stuffed peppers, and they were awesome! This meal was really good. However, I think I've discovered that I don't really care for artichokes that much. Maybe because they were marinated and were really briny. Next time I make this I think I will omit the artichokes for something like broccoli or zucchini instead.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 package sliced mushrooms (I used 16 oz)
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 6 cups fresh baby spinach
  • 1 jar (24 oz) marinated artichokes
  • 1 tub (medium sized) artichoke and parmesan dip
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan 
In large nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium high heat and cook mushrooms, onion, garlic, thyme and oregano for about 10 minutes or until liquid evaporates and mushroom begin to turn golden. 

Stir in spinach and cook for about 3 minutes until wilted. Add artichokes and artichoke dip and cook stirring for about 2 minutes or until heated through. 

Pour into shallow baking dish and sprinkle with cheese. Bake in 400°F oven for about 20 minutes or until golden and bubbly. Let stand for about 5 minutes before serving.

We served ours over brown rices, but this would be awesome if it was thinned out a little into a sauce then served over pasta. Cheers!


Chicken Stew With Butternut Squash and Quinoa


I made this last friday and it came out fabulous. I'm just now starting to get a hold on making soups, stews and sauces - so I was quite surprised when this came out looking just like the picture in the recipe. On top of tasting as good as it looked. It made a ton! It fed us all weekend long, on top of giving some to my dad and my friend Kristy to take home. The recipe was pretty easy to follow and didn't really take to long to throw together. 


INGREDIENTS:
  • 1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded & chopped into 1/2-inch pieces (I actually bought 2 halves of a butternut squash already peeled and seeded at the grocery store)
  • 3 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs (I used about 4 thighs)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 can (14 oz) petite diced tomatoes
  • 2/3 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 3/4 cup pitted and quartered kalamata olives
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
In a medium sized pot, steam the cut squash until barely tender (about 10 minutes), remove 1/2 of the squash and set aside, then continue to steam the remainder until you can mash it with a fork. Mash whats left in the pot, and set aside.

In a large sauce pan bring chick broth to a simmer, and add in the chicken thighs. Cover and cook until chicken is done, about 15 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate to cool, set aside. And pour chicken broth into a bowl, set aside.

Return sauce pan to medium heat, add olive oil. Add onions and cook until they start to brown, about 10 minutes. Add salt, garlic and oregano. Cook for an additional minute. Add in diced tomatoes, butternut squash pieces and mashed squash. Stir to combine.

Add in the reserved chicken broth and quinoa- stir. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the quinoa is translucent. While the quinoa is cooking, shred the chicken with a fork or your fingers. Once the quinoa is cooked, stir in the chicken and olives. Season with pepper if needed. Let simmer together for 5-10 minutes, stir in the parsley and serve.

If you're looking for a nice, hearty, warming soup on cold day - this is perfect! The kids ate their stew with buttered  crackers and we ate ours with grilled cheese. It was amazing. This is going to be my new way to poach chicken too. It came out so moist and delicious. It would be perfect for any recipe you need for shredded chicken. I would omit the olives if you don't like the briny taste of them. Especially if you'll be eating this stew for a few says, because it just flavors it more and more as the olives sit in it. Cheers!




Thursday, March 6, 2014

Spicy Turkey Sausage with Mushroom and Zucchini White Lasagna



I of course, found this the other day on Pinterest. It's a Guy Fieri recipe, and he always has some pretty good stuff going on. I tried something similar about a year ago, a white lasagna with sausage and mushrooms. It was pork sausage (that I made myself), mushrooms, and a béchamel sauce. You can see the recipe here: home made sausage and mushroom white lasagna.  This recipe is a little easier, using no boil lasagna noodle. Even the white sauce is a lot easier to make. The sliced zucchini gives it a great pop of color and added veggies to a dish like this is always welcomed.

INGREDIENTS:

For white Sauce:
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan
  •  salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoons garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
For sausage and mushrooms:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound hot Italian turkey sausage
  • 1-2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1 teaspoons garlic salt
For ricotta cheese mixture:
  • 15 ounces whole milk ricotta
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • Coarse salt
  • pepper
For lasagna (additional):
  • 1 package no-boil lasagna noodles
  • 2 small zucchini, sliced on the bias
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese
  • flat leaf parsley for garnish 
To make the white sauce, melt the butter in a sauce pan over medium heat. Once the butter is melted whisk in the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes, while whisking. Gradually add in the milk, a little at a time while whisking. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about a minute. Remove pan from heat and add in the park cheese, garlic salt, then salt and pepper to taste, stir to combine.

White Parmesan Sauce

To make the sausage and mushrooms, start by adding oil to a skillet and brown the turkey sausage for about 4 minutes, then add in the mushrooms and continue to sauté until golden brown and the turkey sausage is cooked through season with garlic salt and pepper to taste, and remove from heat to cool.

Spicy Turkey Sausage and Mushrooms

To make the ricotta, mix in a bowl with egg, parm cheese, salt and a little pepper.

Ricotta Mixture

Assembling the lasagna, spread 1/4 cup of white sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 pan. Lay 3 lasagna noodles down, followed by 1 cup of ricotta mixture. Layer 1/2 the sliced zucchini then half of the sausage mushroom mixture. Finish with 1 cup of the white sauce and 1/3 of mozzarella. Lay down 4 lasagna noodles, the rest of the ricotta mixture, then the zucchini and the remainder of the sausage mushroom mixture. 1/4 cup of the white sauce then 1/3 of the mozz. Finally lay down 4 more noodles, top with remainder of the white sauce and mozzarella cheese on top. Cover with tinfoil.

Bake at 375 for 45 min to an hour, until the top starts to get golden and the lasagna noodles are tender. Let sit for 10-15 minutes and garnish with chopped parsley.


Lasagna all Baked

Oh my god. This was absolutely amazing. I couldn't wait to post this. It was so yummy and cheesy. The kiddos devoured theirs in record time, and I couldn't help but go back to the pan 3-4 times for bites while I cleaned everything up. It's so worth the little bit of extra prep when making something like this. If you take your time, and season dishes well- you will be impressed when the turn out is as good as this was. I certainly was! Cheers!


Ollie Approved
Maxxy Approved