Wednesday, January 18, 2012

It's Saucey!

I don't care if it is winter.  I still like to cook on the grill.  I cook on the grill year round. Yes, I have been known to cook on the grill when we've had several inches of snow.  Why do I enjoy grilling so much?  Three words ... less clean up.  When I cook things like chicken, I always wrap it in foil so I don't have flare ups.  Tonight I made barbeque chicken with my own homemade barbeque sauce. To me, it's better than the store bought kind and it doesn't take that long to make.  Try it.  You'll like it!

Barbeque Sauce

 1 cup ketchup
2/3 cup water
2 Tb. brown sugar
2 tsp. dried minced onion
1 tsp. chili powder
½ tsp. instant coffee

Combine all the ingredients and bring to a boil in a saucepan.  Reduce heat and stir constantly for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and let cool completely.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Ugh. What to Fix For Dinner

I hate trying to figure out what to fix for dinner when I come home from work.  I didn't make out a menu for this week and now I'm paying for it.  Hubby was out of town last week so dinner was whatever I had on hand.  I went out with friends for Mexican one night and I had enough leftover to have dinner again the next night.  I enjoyed the break from cooking, but Hubby is home now so the cooking must resume.  I looked through some recipes I hadn't tried and found this one.  I cut the recipe in half in case we didn't like it.  I wish I hadn't now so I could have put the other half in the freezer.  Oh well, live and learn. 

Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

3/4 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
1 can chicken broth
1 Tb. Dijon mustard
¼ tsp black pepper
1 ½ cup instant rice, uncooked
2 cups cooked cubed chicken
½ cup diced ham
1  6 oz. package shredded Swiss cheese
1 cup frozen peas and carrots
½ cup plain bread crumbs
2 Tb. butter, melted
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Whisk together sour cream or plain yogurt, chicken broth, mustard, and pepper in a large bowl until well blended.  Add rice, chicken, ham, Swiss cheese, and peas and carrots.  Mix with a spoon.  Pour into a 9x13 pan or 2 smaller pans for freezing.  Mix bread crumbs, butter, and Parmesan cheese.  Spread evenly over the top of the casserole.  Bake uncovered for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown.

Tip:   If you don't care for sour cream, you can substitute plain yogurt.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!!

It was time to fix the traditional New Years dinner.  I smoked a pork tender loin on the smoker, made black eyed peas, corn bread, and collard greens.  I also found a new recipe for potatoes and fixed them.  Hubby and I both agreed, we will have these again!  They are crispy around the edges and very tasty.  

Crushed Potatoes 

8 - 12 whole New Potatoes or Red Potatoes
Olive Oil 
Salt To Taste
Black Pepper To Taste

Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add in as many potatoes as you wish to make and cook them until they are fork-tender.
On a baking sheet, generously drizzle olive oil. Place tender potatoes on the baking sheet leaving plenty of room between each potato.  With a potato masher, gently press down each potato until it slightly mashes. Brush the tops of each crushed potato generously with more olive oil.
Sprinkle potatoes with salt and black pepper.
Bake in a 450 degree oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.

New Years Eve Celebrations

 Last night I had the best dinner since Christmas Eve.  What made it so special?  I had both of my kids and grandkids here.  Too bad my son-in-law couldn't make it.  He had to work.  It's not that I made a fabulous dinner, but the company was the best!  My husband and son were at our son's house all day installing a new kitchen sink, faucet, and disposal.  This is always good bonding time.  My daughter continued a tradition she and a dear friend have had since 8th grade.  They ALWAYS go to lunch and a movie on New Years Eve.  I'm so glad that she and her friend do this every year.  I had the best job though.  I got to keep and love on two of the sweetest babies in the WORLD!  We all had special things to do during the day, but we all came back together for dinner, conversation, and entertainment from the grandkids.  Since we were all busy during the day, dinner was soup and salad.  This soup is another one of my favorites.  There was no better way to end 2011.

Broccoli Cheese Soup

1 12 oz. pkg. of frozen chopped broccoli
1 15 oz. Cheez Whiz
1 pkg. fresh sliced mushrooms
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 medium onion, chopped
1/8 tsp basil
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1 ½ cups of milk

Break the mushrooms into smaller pieces.  Mix all ingredients together.  Heat and stir frequently until hot.

This is what was leftover.  I forgot to take the picture after I made it.