Yep…the quarantine 15 is a thing… I think I’ve been on that ‘SEE FOOD DIET’…you know the one where you see food and eat it….all of it…
So here’s a little poem for fun as I deal with my newly gained weight…
This pandemic has taken a toll!
I’m beginning to feel like a big old tootsie roll.
We been so long stuck inside,
I’m shocked that my leggings stretch so wide!
With so much comfort food around,
I can’t believe I am so round!
So here’s a way to make us thinner,
Try this delicious salad for dinner!
So, once again, Steve and I decided to start eating more salads…I sense this has been a recurring theme for my blog as I revisit some past posts!
This one from Cuisine at Home is a keeper! The dressing is amazing! Remember to toss the cooked shrimp with the vinaigrette for at least an hour for great flavor! This would be a great addition to your Memorial Day cookout (with under 10 people staying 6 feet apart of course)!
SHRIMP COCKTAIL SALAD
with Lemon Horseradish Vinaigrette
Makes 6 servings
FOR THE VINAIGRETTE, WHISK:
1/3 cup prepared horseradish
1 Tbsp. minced lemon zest
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
3 Tbsp. no-salt-added ketchup
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. each kosher salt and black pepper
FOR THE SALAD, HEAT:
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1 dried bay leaf
1 lemon, halved and juiced
1 Tbsp. Old Bay seasoning
2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. black peppercorns
In a large pot of water over high; bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer 10 minutes.
Add 1/2 lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined (about 30) and cook until pink and opaque, 2–3 minutes.
Transfer shrimp to a bowl of ice water; drain.
Toss shrimp in vinaigrette, cover, and chill at least 1 hour or overnight, stirring occasionally.
I know that the upcoming months will be the ultimate test of my willpower! But, the harsh reality of this is knowing that so many are without food and the ability to remain socially distant from one another to avoid the spread of this monster. I try to make light of our trivial ‘problems’ as we tread down this path. In a small way, we are donating non perishables and clothing to try to help.
So, until next time….
Cheers, stay safe and help others when you can….
PS…Here are some fun finds if you feel like shopping!
Hey fellow quarantiners! I wonder if you are being as resourceful as I am trying to be….and surprising myself! Doing my own nails, highlighting my own hair, and yes……cutting my own hair….are my most recent activities.
This cutting my own hair thing is a daily event. Watching you tube videos of people cutting their own hair and other people’s hair has been entertaining but hasn’t helped, and I definitely don’t recommend it. My hair dresser, Devin, is going to shit herself when she see’s what I’ve done to my hair. I’m not quite sure what I’ve done either…
I did cut Steve’s hair the other evening after cocktails and every morning check to see which side needs evening up. He’s been super patient. Yesterday he told me that he thought his hairline was receding….I told him that it was probably his new haircut and maybe we should let it grow a little….What I really meant to say is that maybe we should do haircuts before cocktails?
My son and new daughter-in-law, who just got married in their home last weekend, have been our personal shoppers. I worry about them… As nursing home administrators, Jeffrey & Mackenzie are both on the front lines so I’d like to keep my grocery list short giving me a new challenge….which is also keeping me away from haircutting for a bit…..
MEALS CAN YOU MAKE WITH ONE ROTISSERIE CHICKEN
There is nothing more delicious than a fresh, hot, store bought grocery store rotisserie chicken…Even smelling it in the car on your way home makes my mouth water…
Meal 1. I pull the thigh/leg off and serve it with any side. No magic, but delicious. Cut up the leftover chicken and tuck it in the fridge for the next creation..
Super easy and delicious…add fresh or frozen spinach & corn if you like…
1 can diced tomatoes in juice (14.5 oz.)
1 Tbsp. chopped garlic
2 Tbsp. olive oil1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. chili powder
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
Salt and black pepper to taste
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 can diced tomatoes, drained (14.5 oz.)
1/2 cup diced onion
2 cups shredded Cheddar, divided
8 flour tortillas (8-inch)
Preheat oven to 350°.
For the sauce, purée tomatoesin juice, chopped onion, and garlic in a food processor.
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium. Stir in flour, chili powder, and cumin; cook 1 minute.
Whisk in puréed tomato mixture and broth; bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer sauce until thickened, 15–20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Season sauce with salt and pepper and let cool.
For the filling, combine chicken, drained tomatoes, diced onion, and 1 cup Cheddar with 1/2 cup sauce to coat.
Spread 1/2 cup sauce in bottomof a 9×13-inch baking dish. Place 1 tortilla into dish, spread on1 Tbsp. sauce, and flip.
Scoop 2 Tbsp. filling onto tortilla, and roll to enclose.
Place tortilla, seam side down, in the dish.
Repeat saucing, filling, and rolling with remaining tortillas.
Top enchiladas with remaining sauce and 1 cup Cheddar.
Bake enchiladas until Cheddar melts and sauce is bubbly, 30 minutes; let cool slightly before serving.
CHICKEN POT PIE WITH PHYLO CRUST
So easy and delicious! Substitute the phyla with refrigerated pie crust for an easy alternative.
8 oz.cremini or button mushrooms, quartered
1 Tbsp. minced fresh thyme
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flouR
1/2 cup dry sherry
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup whole milk
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
Salt, black pepper, and dry
sherry to taste
2 cups chopped cooked chicken (rotisserie)
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables, thawed and patted dry
1/2 cup frozen pearl onions, thawed and patted dry
4 Tbsp. each unsalted butter and olive oil
16 sheets phyllo dough, thawed to room temperatureMAKE IT!
Preheat oven to 400°. Line a baking sheet with foil.
Cook mushrooms and thyme in 6 Tbsp. butter in a sauté pan over medium heat until browned and liquid nearly evaporates, about 10 minutes. Stir in flour and cook 1 minute.
Deglaze pan with 1/2 cup sherry; cook until nearly evaporated. Whisk in broth and milk; cook until thickened to desired consistency, 10–12 minutes.
Add lemon juice; season with salt, pepper, and sherry.
Transfer mushroom mixture to a large bowl. Stir in chicken, mixed vegetables, and onions.
Divide mixture among four baking dishes arranged on prepared baking sheet.
Heat 4 Tbsp. butter with oil in microwave until butter melts. Place a phyllo sheet on a flat surface; cover remaining sheets with a damp towel to keep them from drying out.
Lightly brush phyllo sheet with butter-oil mixture; roll into a loose tube. Repeat brushing and rolling with 3 more phyllo sheets, then starting at outer edge, place 4 phyllo tubes end to end in a spiral pattern on top of filling. Repeat phyllo steps for each pot pie. Drizzle any remaining butter- oil mixture over phyllo or coat with nonstick spray.
Bake pies until crust is golden and filling is bubbly, about 20 minutes. Let pies cool 5–10 minutes before serving.
Depending upon the width of your dishes, the number of phyllo sheets needed may vary by one or two.
Creamy Pesto Lasagna with rotisserie chicken
Use no-boil lasagna sheets or regular sheets (cook them 5 minutes before assembling) Also, add spinach for added nutrition.
FOR THE BÉCHAMEL
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups whole milk
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 cup purchased refrigerated basil pesto
Salt and black pepper to taste
FOR THE LASAGNA
1 pkg. whole-milk ricotta cheese (15 oz.)
1 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 cup purchased refrigerated basil pesto
12 dry, flat, no-boil lasagna sheets
3 cups diced rotisserie chicken, divided
4 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella, divided
Preheat oven to 350°. For the béchamel, melt butterin a large saucepan over medium heat.
Whisk in flour and cook2 minutes.
Slowly whisk in milk and nutmeg, bring to a simmer, and cook2 minutes more.
Off heat, stir in1/2 cup pesto; season with saltand pepper.
For the lasagna, stir together ricotta, Parmesan, and 1/2 cup pesto; season with salt and pepper.
Spread 2/3 cup béchamel in bottom of a 9×13-inch baking dish.
Lay 3 lasagna sheets side by side, top with 1/2 cup ricotta mixture, 3/4 cup chicken, 2/3 cup béchamel, and 3/4 cup mozzarella.
Repeat layering three more times, topping the final layer with 11/2 cups mozzarella.
Cover lasagna with foil. Bake lasagna until bubbly, about 45 minutes.
Remove foil andbake lasagna 15 minutes more, then broil on high until golden, 2–3 minutes.
Let lasagna rest15 minutes before serving.
Staying home and staying safe have become part of our new normal.
Making a list of things to accomplish each day has helped relieve boredom and frustration and gives me a sense of accomplishment. Organizing those boxes of pictures into labeled baggies or photo albums, making boxes of clothing and other items to be donated (there will be a huge need), and finding delicious recipes with items shoved into the back of the pantry are this week’s list.
Cheers to hoping that this will get better. If we all do our part in keeping our distance and staying home, we hope this will pass.
If you have any easy and delicious recipes to share, I’d love to hear from you!
I spent most of last week scrambling from store to store engaging in my own version of “Say Yes to the Dress” hoping to find the perfect dress for my son’s upcoming wedding. Little did I know that I was successfully exposing myself (and my family) to God knows what and hoping this invisible enemy would just disappear. The good news….I found the dress…The bad news….The wedding is off, or postponed for now.
My husband, Steve is happy because all of the ‘say no to the dresses’ have been successfully returned and the credit card is tucked away….for now.
What is the take away? Stay positive, worry about what we can control, and turn off the tv after the Today Show.
For me, self quarantining is a great time to search out recipes to share! Technically, I should be offering immune boosting recipes, but today, since our restaurant choices are limited, I found some great ‘restaurant quality’ recipes to share. Check this twist on chicken Parm from Cuisine Magazine!
Chicken Parmesan Roulades
with Fresh Tomato Sauce and Caesar Salad
For the roulades—
8 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves pounded thin (6 oz. each)
Salt & Pepper to taste
Fresh Mozzarella sticks cut into eight, 2″ long pieces
For the coating—
1 C. panic bread crumbs (I use Italian blend)
1 C. Parmesan cheese shredded
1 T. minced fresh parsley
1/4 C. all purpose flour
1 egg, beaten
1/2 C. olive oil
For the sauce—
1 C. chopped onions
1/2 t. red pepper flakes
3 C. cherry tomatoes
1/4 C. chopped fresh basil
Salt to taste
Caesar Salad, 1/2 cup Parmesan, shredded
Preheat oven to 400* & coat a baking sheet with nonstick spray.
Halve the chicken for the roulades.
Season & roll each with a piece of mozzarella.
Combine panko, Parmesan cheese & parsley
Dredge roulades in flour, dip in egg and coat in panko mixture.
Roast in the oven 10 min.
Sautés in skillet with 2T olive oil
FOR THE SAUCE:
Saute onions and pepper flakes in a sauce pan 2-3 min.
Stir in tomatoes and cook until slightly thickened 8-10 min.
Season with basal and salt.
Place roulade on top of Caesar salad, spoon tomato sauce on top, and sprinkle with Parmesan.
Makes 10 cups; Total time: 15 minutes
11/2 t. garlic, minced 1/4 t. kosher salt
Whisk in: 1/4 cup Parmesan, grated 2 T. fresh lemon juice
1 T. mayonnaise 1 t. anchovy paste 1 t. Dijon mustard 1 t. Worcestershire sauce 1/2 t. black pepper 1/4 cup olive oil Toss WiTh: 10 cups romaine lettuce, chopped
Mash garlic and salt together with the flat side of a knife blade until it forms a paste, Whisk remaining ingredients together with the garlic paste until combined. Toss the romaine with the dressing just before serving.
I hope you enjoy today’s recipe. Shortcuts work….use jar sauce and store bought dressing…it’s all good.
Every day my daughter FaceTimes me with our 18 month old grandson doing everything from dying spaghetti noodles to finger-painting cards and mailing them to family members. Working full time from home and being so resourceful, I marvel at her positive outlook and commitment.
It’s a lesson. Without being preachy and trite….cheers to health and watching out for each other while doing the right thing…..Stay home….Stay healthy.
My search to spice up everyday meals have two requirements….they have to be super quick and super flavorful. This great recipe for a juicy and delicious turkey burger tickled my fancy.
I loved the combo with the pineapple, but it turned the bun into huge mess. My Steve wasn’t a huge fan of the pineapple, so he ate it on the side wrapped in a lettuce bun. I also went a little crazy with the Soy Vey Very Teriyaki, actually a lot crazy….the whole bottle at the end. LOVED IT!
TERIYAKI TURKEY BURGERS with GRILLED PINEAPPLE
Makes 4 burgers
1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
1/3 cup diced onion
1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
4 Tbsp. teriyaki sauce, divided
1/4 tsp. onion powder
1 lb. ground turkey
8 oz. sliced fresh pineapple or 1 can (8 oz.), drained
4 hamburger buns, split, buttered, and toasted (I recommend wrapping in lettuce)
Green leaf lettuce
Teriyaki sauce, (Soy Vey Very Teriyaki)
Preheat grill to medium.
Combine egg, bread crumbs, onion, garlic, 2 Tbsp. teriyaki sauce, and onion powder in a bowl. Add turkey and mix until combined; shape
Baste patties with remaining 2 Tbsp. teriyaki sauce (or the rest of the bottle) during the last 5 minutes of cooking.
Grill pineapple slices until grill marks appear, 3–4 minutes per side. Assemble burgers on buns with lettuce, or wrap in lettuce, pineapple, and additional teriyaki sauce.
As summer draws toooo quickly to a close, I hope to keep my grill running as long as I can, filling my days with family, friends and yummy cocktails!
I saw a cute saying for this time of year….”Keep your pumpkin spice away from my margarita!” I like it and am happy to wait for cool fall nights….so until then….
Salad…..my favorite comfort food of summer, but anything fresh from the garden and smothered in cheese….now we’re talking! Summer’s bounty of eggplant, zucchini and tomatoes give rise to delicious and healthy twists on most loved recipes….like one of my faves, eggplant Parmesan!
This sheet pan eggplant parm is a super easy and flavorful without all the fuss and fat of the original version. Give it a try…..
SHEET PAN EGGPLANT PARMESAN
1 medium eggplant, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 Tbsp water
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbsps olive oil or spray olive oil
3 C. marinara sauce
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded or fresh
julienned fresh basil, optional
Spread the sliced eggplant in a single layer onto paper towels. Lightly salt the eggplant and let it sit for 15 minutes. Flip the eggplant, salt the other side, and let sit for another 15 minutes. Rince the eggplant with water and pat dry with clean paper towels. (This step is optional)
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
Combine the panko breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, dried basil, dried oregano, and garlic powder in a shallow dish. In a separate dish, lightly beat the eggs with the water.
Dip the eggplant slices in the egg and then the breadcrumb mixture, pressing the breadcumbs onto the eggplant to evenly coat both sides.
Spray a foil-lined sheet pan with the olive oil.
Place the breaded eggplant in a single layer on the baking sheet.
Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, flip the slices, then bake for an additional 10 minutes on the other side. Spoon sauce onto each slice and top with shredded or fresh mozzorella cheese.
Return to the oven and continue baking for an additional 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted. Top with fresh basil right before serving.
Thanks for swinging by! I know it’s been awhile, but I hope to share more regularly!
When the kids come to visit, we always have leftover bananas. Try this delicious twist on the usual banana bread or cupcakes…..Banana Cookies! Soft, chewy and delicious. You may make them before the kids arrive!
1/2 cup butter softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 ripe smashed banana
3.4 oz package banana cream instant pudding mix
2 large eggs
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups white chocolate chips
Preheat your oven to 350*F
Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Combine flour, baking soda and salt, then set aside.
Combine butter and sugar and mix with an electric mixer. Add banana, dry pudding mix and the eggs, then mix together until smooth.
Combine dry ingredients into the mixing bowl with banana mixture.
Add the white chocolate chips.
Scoop rounded tablespoonfuls of cookie dough onto parchment lined baking pan.
Bake at 350*F for 10 minutes or until slightly golden.
Cool for several minutes on the cookie sheet before transferring to a cooling rack.
The next time you find yourself standing in a grocery store, and some guy with a camera loudly asks if there are any home cooks around, and you are the only person there, I say, GO FOR IT!
This happened, and my dream of becoming a Food Network Star was at my fingertips…well, sort of.
What started as a plan to cook a quiet dinner, soon blossomed into an incredible cocktail party with our amazing friends pitching in, all the while our PR guy, Larry from TellYourVision.Net, filmed us from start to finish!
I have had the fortune of great friends with the greenest of green thumbs extoll gifts from their garden. I LOVE summer’s bounty am elated when the supply far exceeds the demand. Truthfully, how much zucchini, tomatoes, beats and lettuce can one eat in a week? Hmmmm…..
So, with open hands and a grateful heart, I accept these gifts and in return, I share recipes, dog treats and treasures from my kitchen.
My zucchini growing friends did quite well this year….you know who you are 😘 and I am sharing one of my favorite recipes…Zucchini Napoleons.
ZUCCHINI CAKE NAPOLEONS
Makes 4 servings
4 zucchini, green, yellow or both (4 cups)
1/2 C. shredded onion
1/2 C. shredded Romano cheese
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 Tbsp. dried Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 cup Italian panko (or Italian breadcrumbs)
3 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
1 large tomato
8 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1/2 Cup prepared pesto (I use Trader Joe’s…cheap + fresh)
Shred zucchini and onion
Place zucchini and onion in a salad spinner, sprinkle with salt and let stand 30 minutes.
Spin mixture in a salad spinner to dry; transfer to a kitchen towel and squeeze to remove more liquid.
Whisk together egg, garlic, Italian seasoning, and baking powder.
Stir in zucchini mixture and panco.
Scoop batter with 1/2 cup measure onto a baking sheet and press into 8 cakes.
Heat 1 Tbsp. oil with drippings in skillet. Sauté cakes in two batches over medium heat until golden, about 4 minutes per side, adding more oil as needed.
Add a mozzarella slice to each cake in the last 2 minutes of sautéing to slightly melt mozzarella.
Transfer cakes to a paper-towel-lined plate.
Assemble Napoleons by layering
fresh mozzarella slice
a tomato slice
2 T. pesto
Top each with a remaining cake and garnish with a basil sprig; serve immediately
Summer’s bounty isn’t over until it’s over. I hope you enjoy this delicious dish. It has great presentation and doesn’t take forever to make…just a few small steps.
Great friends are truly a blessing. I remember taking a Steven Covey class many years ago where he emphasized the concepts of deposits and withdrawals in friendship. “Over deposit and under withdraw” was his best advice in any relationship and no words could be truer.
Cheers to friends, family and everything else you love. Until next time…
If you are looking for a great salad to add to your picnic for Mom’s Day, graduation, or just a get-together, try this BLT Salad…..all the flavors of that favorite bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich in a bowl! Simple and delicious!
BLT PASTA SALAD
Creamy Bacon Dressing
To keep the dressing from curdling, be sure to cool the bacon drippings to room temperature before adding to the mayonnaise.
Makes 20 servings
1 lb. dry campanelle pasta 1 lb. thick-sliced bacon, diced
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water according to package directions. Transfer pasta to a bowl of ice water; drain well.
Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer bacon to a paper- towel-lined plate. Reserve 3 Tbsp. drippings; set aside to cool.Whisk together mayonnaise, reserved drippings, shallots, basil, vinegar, and sugar in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper.
Stir in pasta, romaine, tomatoes, and bacon; toss to coat. Season salad with salt and pepper.
Dear Friends! I hope you enjoy this delicious salad! This year, I used medium sized ball jars for individual servings….they looked super cute on the table, and made serving easy (the best!).
This year will be my daughter, Jodi’s, first “Almost A Mom’s Day!” They are deciding what to name the baby, and I’m trying to decide what the baby will call Steve and I.
Check out some of my fun finds! As always, thanks for swinging by and have a wonderful Mother’s Day!
“When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I’m feeling sad….I simply remember my favorite things and then I don’t feel so bad!” Oscar Hammerstein’s song resonates holiday for me. “Oh What a Beautiful Morning” and “In My Own Little Corner” are amongst his other iconic pieces which conjure emotion. Click to listen ….My Favorite Things – Julie Andrews
With the constant stream of men charged with sexual harassment these days, it’s a breath of fresh air to revisit the lives of beautiful people and read quotes which helped make them famous. My favorite Oscar Hammerstein quote is: “A bell’s not a bell ’til you ring it, A song’s not a song ’til you sing it, Love in your heart wasn’t put there to stay, Love isn’t love ’til you give it away!” Reading it closely, I now wonder if, in today’s world, someone would misconstrue that as sexual harassment……
In a recent edition of “O The Oprah Magazine, staff and readers were asked to respond to the question of the month; “WHAT’S YOUR ULTIMATE HOLIDAY SONG?” The responses were varied and personal as you might imagine. They ran the gamut of predictability to absurd, but all a fun quick read. My personal favorite with the response from the Senior Web Editor, Ruth Baron, whose ultimate holiday song was, “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas.” She stated that she grew up Jewish and that song convinced her that all of her “Santa-believing” friends could have anything they wanted.
One of my favorite things at any time of year is cookies. Around the holidays, however, from early November through late December, I’m partial to the gingerbread cookie. The aroma of these delicious little morsels screams, “Welcome home!” to all who enter your kitchen, that is if they aren’t burning :).
Here it is….the Ultimate Gingerbread Cookie. Remember….under-bake, serve warm (reheat in the microwave if you need to before serving) AND they go well with hot spiced apple cider with a splash of rum.
THE ULTIMATE GINGERBREAD COOKIE
• 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
• 2 teaspoons ground ginger
• 1 teaspoon baking soda
• 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 3/4 cup butter, softened
• 1 cup white sugar
• 1 egg
• 1 tablespoon water
• 1/4 cup molasses
• 4 tablespoons white sugar
Preheat oven to 350F.
Mix together the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy.
Beat in the egg, then stir in the water and molasses.
Gradually stir the sifted ingredients into the molasses mixture.
Shape the dough into walnut sized balls, and roll them in the remaining 4 tablespoons of sugar.
Place the cookies 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. You don’t need to flatten them.
Bake for 10 minutes in the preheated oven.
Allow cookies to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
Makes approximately 30 cookies. Store in an airtight container.
Unbaked cookies can be stored in the freezer and popped in the oven!
Wishing you the happiest of Holidays and health in the New year.
P.S. If you feel like shopping, check out these finds….
LAURA’S FAVORITE THINGS SHOP
ALSO AVAILABLE IN LETTERS TO MYSELF, MY GRAND CHILD, MY MOM, MY DAD, AND MY FUTURE SELF.
I don’t ordinarily get super excited about kitchen gadgets, but this one is AMAZING! This little monster is the ultimate one pot meal making which makes all other Crockpots obsolete!
It steams! It bakes! It Sears! It sautes! It slow cooks! And the best part, is that it does it all in one pot.
So, I know what you’re thinking and you’re probably right. You’re thinking that I sound like one of those Vita-mix sales demonstrators you normally find in a tent during county fairs. Endorsing a product, particularly with your friends, is risky business but truly, this new machine is a game changer.
The Ninja 4-in-1 Cooking System best features are:
1 pot with 4 cooking functions: Stove Top, Slow Cook, Oven, and Steam.
Unique heating elements let you sear, sauté, and slow cook—all in one pot—for easy cleanup.
Bake in oven mode. Dry Bake for chicken and roasts, and Steam Bake for delicious, moist cakes.
Steam delicious and healthy vegetables, fish, and other delicate foods.
What to do with that leftover turnkey? Try these delicious recipes from the Ninja 4 in 1 Cookbook that comes with your purchase.
TURKEY POT PIE
CRUST Pie dough FILLING 4 medium carrots, peeled, cut in thirds 3 stalks celery, cut in thirds 1 1/2 small onions, peeled, cut in quarters 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 pound leftover turkey cut in 1 inch pieces 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter 1/2 cup flour 4 cups chicken broth 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves Salt and pepper, to taste 2 tablespoons milk
To prepare crust, see Pie Dough recipe.
Preheat oven to 375°F. Place carrots, celery, and onion into the 64-ounce Precision Processor.
Select CHOP. Transfer chopped vegetables to a bowl and set aside.
Add olive oil to a large skillet over medium heat. Add chopped vegetables and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Add chopped turkey and continue cooking until vegetables are softened, about 5 to 8 minutes.
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add flour to saucepan, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes. Add broth, stirring constantly with a whisk, until mixture thickens to form a sauce. Add thyme and season with salt and pepper.
Combine the vegetables and chicken with the sauce, then pour mixture into a casserole dish. Remove one pie dough disc from refrigerator and roll out to 2 inches larger than the casserole dish. Place dough on top of filling and crimp edges. Cut vent holes in dough and brush with milk. Cook for 45 to 50 minutes or until crust is lightly browned.
1 pound leftover turkey cut in 1 inch pieces 1 jar (24 ounces) marinara sauce, divided 8 uncooked no-boil lasagna pasta sheets, divided 1 medium zucchini, cut in 1/4-inch thick rounds 1 pound whole-milk ricotta cheese 1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
Place turkey and 1/3 cup sauce into the pot. Cover with 4 sheets pasta, breaking up the fourth to cover the sides of the pan.
Scatter the zucchini slices over the pasta. Spread with ricotta and sprinkle with 1 cup mozzarella cheese. Cover with half the remaining sauce.
Layer the remaining pasta, then top with the remaining sauce and mozzarella cheese. Cover pot.
Select Auto-iQ Quick Meals: Recipe 20 and press the START/STOP button.
For best results, let stand 5 to 10 minutes before serving.
The Thanksgiving countdown as officially begun and I love all of the new gadgets designed to make our lives a little bit easier. Even if you don’t purchase this great cooker, I hope you’re able to enjoy the recipes with your leftover turkey.
Cheers to a wonderful Thanksgiving surrounded by people in your life who make you smile and appreciate you.
Cookies are hands down the ultimate comfort food for fall. It seems that every holiday celebration features a favorite cookie as a part of the seasonal celebration. Serve these little Pumpkin bites warm with a cold glass of milk. Don’t forget….always underbake!
PUMPKIN COOKIES WITH CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon baking soda 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened 1 cup white sugar 1/2 cup light brown sugar 1 1/4 cup canned pumpkin puree 1 large egg 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 4 oz. cream cheese 3/4 cup powdered sugar 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt; set aside.
In another bowl, cream together the butter and sugars. Add pumpkin, egg, and vanilla to butter mixture, and beat until creamy. Stir in the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture by hand until just combined.
Drop on prepared baking sheets by heaping tablespoonfuls; Butter the bottom of a drinking glass and then dip the bottom of the glass in a bowl of sugar. Flatten the dough balls with the bottom of the glass until they are about ¾ inch thick, dipping the glass in sugar as necessary to prevent sticking.
Bake in preheated oven for 13 to 15 minutes. Cool cookies on wire rack.
Once cookies have cooled completely, frost or drizzle with cream cheese frosting.
While the cookies are cooling make frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar and pumpkin pie spice and beat until smooth and creamy.
Summer should get a speeding ticket! I honestly don’t know where it went! Looking forward to sweater weather has never been my thing, so I still hold on to summer as long as I can….and my white jeans. I was elated when the Today Show fashion consultant said that your white skinny jeans can be a fall staple this year. Not that I needed the affirmation, but it was good to hear.
The end of summer has left us a bounty of juicy peaches to enjoy! Searching for great peach dishes through collections of cookbooks and recipes, I have found that although the “plus-it-ups” are fun, many of the old basics and “Mom Recipes” are still the “Blue Ribbon Winners!” This peach recipe can be made in an 8×8 casserole or individual ramekins. Hot out of the oven, serve it up with some cool & creamy vanilla ice cream. Life is good…..and here it is…..easy & delicious…..
MOM’S PEACH CRISP
4 cups sliced fresh peaches
1/2 C. Flour
1/2 C. Brown Sugar
1/2 C. Cold Butter
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1 C. Rolled Oats
Pre-heat oven to 350*
Arrange peaches evenly in an 8×8-inch baking dish or stack the peaches halfway up in a ramekin.
Mix flour, brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl using a pastry cutter until evenly crumbled.
Fold oats into flour mixture; sprinkle and press topping into peaches.
Bake in the preheated oven until topping is lightly browned, about 30 minutes.
Cheers to summer, cheers to peaches and cheers to doing what makes you happy! Until next time…
Labor Day….summer’s last hurrah? I’m not sure what happened to the ‘dog days of summer,’ but our August has been more of an Eskimo Dog…..chilly with precipitation! Fortunately, the outlook for Labor Day looks good so let the picnics begin!
Last minute company?? No worries with these eazy breezy dishes! Keep it seasonal AND simple…
First, let’s start with an appetizer that doubles as a salad…..
SLICED BOSC PEARS WITH GOAT CHEESE AND PECANS
Simply slice pears in 1/4 inch slices, top with 1 T. goat cheese, add a toasted pecan and serve! Want to fancy it up? Drizzle a little store bought…did I say that??? …..balsamic glaze over the top.
WEDGE SALAD DIP
I found this recipe on Pinterest recently, and I thought…”Genius!’ This dip has all of the incredible flavors of a wedge salad, serves a crowd and is always a hit! Duplicating this as a Greek Salad Dip, or any of your favorite salad combos work well! *As a side note, however, not everyone loves blue cheese, so I like to use the blue cheese on 1/2 and label it!
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 c. sour cream
1 package Ranch Dressing Mix
1½ c. chopped romaine lettuce
½ c. chopped tomatoes
½ c. chopped cooked bacon
2-4 oz. crumbled blue cheese (according to taste)
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh chives
Combine cream cheese, sour cream, and Ranch Dip mix and mix until smooth.
Spread into the bottom of a 9-inch pie plate or other similarly sized pan.
Top with lettuce, tomatoes, bacon, blue cheese, and chives.
Enjoy with your favorite crackers
NOW FOR THE MAIN COURSE!!
Crowd pleasing and delicious!
GRILLED HOT ITALIAN SAUSAGE SANDWICHES WITH ROASTED ONIONS AND PEPPERS
Pre-heat oven to 400*F.
Slice assorted peppers, red, yellow, green & orange in 1/2″ slices.
Slice sweet onions, preferably Vidalia in 1/2″ slices.
Place onions & peppers in a roasting pan. Drizzle 3 T. over top & sprinkle with salt & pepper. Roast approximately 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are transparent.
*Careful not to over-roast or they become mushy…..
Grill assorted Italian sausages. Cut into 2 inch slices & place on top of the onions & peppers. Serve with fresh Italian rolls & enjoy!
For dessert?? Vanilla Ice cream with fresh sliced peaches on top!
Thanks so much for swinging by! As I have gotten older, even though I love to cook….and eat….dining out is soooo much easier. I’m constantly on the hunt for dishes that have amazing flavor and have the look of something complicated that took a lot of time to prepare.
Cheers to enjoying your Labor day filled with time spent just the way you like it.
As you open your refrigerator and there is a distinct dark quiet that overtakes you, you begin to cringe. No hum, no lights…… and you think, “Shit.” Sticking your nose in to hopefully smell nothing, you immediately feel the carton of milk to gage the temperature. While quickly reaching for the freezer and opening it, you notice that the seafood, steaks, and everything else has begun to defrost….all at once! Quickly surveying the damage, you resort to throwing out the spoiled and attempting to salvage what is left.
Always stocking up on frozen shrimp, I had quite a bit in the freezer as well as a HUGE bag of scallops, a package of andouille sausage …and OKRA! With the help of a small trip to the grocery store, I came up with this delicious recipe.
SEAFOOD GUMBO (SERVES 8)
3 T. olive oil
1 C. diced onion
1 C. diced green pepper
1 C. diced celery
1 lb. andouille sausage, sliced
1 lb. fresh or frozen and thawed shrimp
1 lb. fresh or frozen and thawed scallops
2 C. each of fresh or frozen sliced okra
1 C. sliced Roma tomatoes, fresh or canned, drained.
1/2 C. flour
2 C. fresh or frozen and thawed sliced okra
1/2 C. chipped roma, fresh or canned & drained
Chopped scallions & parsley as garnish
In a large dutch oven, saute in 3T olive oil:
1 C. each: diced onion, diced green pepper, & diced celery
IN A SEPARATE SKILLET SAUTE:
1 lb. andouille sausage and add to the dutch oven.
2 C. each of fresh or frozen sliced okra
1 C. sliced Roma tomatoes, fresh or canned, drained.
1 lb. thawed shrimp & scallops and sauce until pink and tender.
1/2 C. flour over top and blend in the mixture, cooking for 1 min.
3 C. prepared Chicken broth over top.
1 t. salt , 1 t. black pepper , 1/2 t. white pepper , 1 t. cayenne pepper, 1 bay leaf
T. scallions, minced T. parsley
With Cooked rice
It would have been easy to cook up the thawing food and freeze it for another day, but it was fun to get creative. The flavors in the recipe blend beautifully and after purchasing a new fridge, I was able to freeze what we hadn’t eaten for another day. Serve this dish with an ice cold beer or a crisp sauvignon blanc! If you don’t like seafood, chicken is a great substitute.
Stay tuned for the delicious dishes I made with the thawing steak, chicken and other goodies from my freezer.
Cheers to knowing that if this is the worst thing that happens in a day, life is good. Keeping our thoughts and prayers for victims of the hurricane and our soldiers defending our country is so important.
PLEASE remember to thank our police officers, fire fighters, soldiers and anyone else who provides a service to our country and our safety. In an uncertain world, I do try not to take anything for granted.