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Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Broccoli and Grilled Chicken Pasta Salad

As the weather warms up, salads appear more often on our dinner plates.  This pasta salad serves as a wonderful dinner with a nice roll or slice of fruit.  It is better if you make it and refrigerate for at least one hour to meld the flavors.

8 oz. pasta of your choice
2 c. grilled cubed chicken
2 c. steamed broccoli
1 medium Red Delicious apple, cubed
1 c. sliced celery
1 c. shredded carrot
1/2 c. sour cream or plain yogurt
2 T. dijon mustard
1 t. honey
1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
salt tnad pepper
Cook pasta and cool.  In a large bowl combine the sour cream, mustard, vinegar and honey.  Add in the pasta, celery, carrot, broccoli and chicken.  Refrigerate for one hour before serving.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Chicken, Sweet Potato and Kale Bake

We are trying to eat low histamine foods this week.  But these recipes also seem to be low carb and paleo friendly.  This was a very healthy and delicious weekday meal.  Easy to put together and ready in about 45 minutes.

2 Sweet potatoes, peeled
2 chicken breast
1 c. chopped kale
1 t. lemon zest
3 t. fresh rosemary
2 T. olive oil

After peeling the potatoes, slice very thin using a knife or mandoline. In a bowl mix sweet potatoes, kale, 2 t. rosemary, lemon zest and olive oil.    Mix well and then pour into a deep dish pie pan.
Put chicken breasts on top.  Sprinkle on remaining rosemary.  Bake at 375 for 45 minutes.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Asparagus, Tomato and Feta Salad

  •  This is a great little salad for spring.  Asparagus is in season and the cost is down.
  •  Dressing:
  • 6 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Salad
  • 2 lbs fresh asparagus (preferably medium thickness), tough ends trimmed, remaining diced into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 (10.5 oz) pkg. grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 4 oz feta cheese, crumbled (scant 1 cup)

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Cranberry Walnut Granola

Mmmm, it not only tastes so good on my yogurt, but it makes the house smell heavenly while it is baking.  Today's recipe comes from the wonderful cookbook, "Food to Live By."  The original recipe called for pecans, but I never seem to have pecans in the house...but I do have walnuts.  You can use whatever nuts you prefer.

4 1/2 c. oatmeal
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. pumpkin seeds
1 1/2 c. walnuts (or whatever nut your prefer)
Mix these ingredients together in a large bowl.  Then in a small bowl combine:
1/2 c. water
1/2 c. vegetable oil or coconut oil
1/4 c. pure maple syrup
Pour this mixture over the oatmeal mixture and combine well.  Pour onto the largest cooky sheet you have and bake at 325 for 25 minutes.  Take out of the oven, mix the granola around on the cooky sheet and return to the oven for another 30 minutes.
When it cools, mix in  2 c. dried cranberries.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Beef Satay Noodles

This is a nice dinner good all by itself.  Just cook it up, dish it into a bowl and enjoy.  It doesn't get easier than that.

8 oz. stir fry noodles
1/2 c. peanut butter
3 T. soy sauce
1 t. sriracha or tiger sauce
1/2 c. chopped cilantro
1 9 0z bag broccoli slaw
1/4 onion, chopped
1# ground beef
2 t. chopped ginger
lime wedges

Bring a large saucepan to boil.  Add  noodles and let sit for 10 minutes.
Put 1 T. corn oil and 1 T. sesame oil in a large frypan.  Add onion and ground beef.  Cook for 10 minutes.  Add broccoli slaw, ginger, peanut butter, soy sauce, and sriracha.  Cook another 10 minutes.  MIx in cilantro.  Serve in bowls with lime wedges.

Lemon Coconut Poke Cake

I seem to be craving lemon and coconut lately.  So why not combine them for a tasty poke cake?  Poke cake is one of the easiest desserts you can make.  Bake a cake mix according to directions, poke holes in the cake (I use the handle of a wooden spoon), mix up and pour on a filling.  Top with whipped cream and enjoy.  The variations are endless.  This combination is a nice spring cake.

1 box white cake mix
1 small box lemon instant pudding mix
1 can coconut milk
1/2 t. coconut flavoring
milk as needed
1/2 c. powdered sugar
whipped cream or Cool Whip
coconut flakes

Bake the cake mix according to directions, except substituting coconut milk for the required water in the recipe.  Bake in a 13 x 9 pan.  When the cake is done, take the handle of a wooden spoon and poke holes into the cake.  Mix together the pudding mix, and remainder of the coconut milk-you may need to add some milk to it to equal one cup, and powdered sugar.  Pour over cake.  Refrigerate.  Frost with Cool Whip or whipped cream.  Sprinkle with coconut flakes.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Teriyaki Chicken Coconut Rice Casserole

This is a quick dinner if you prepare the chicken early int he morning, or the night before.  You want to have time for the chicken to marinate in the teriyaki sauce.   You can change the vegetable too...snow peas or carrots would work well.

3 chicken breasts, diced
1 red pepper, slice thin
1/4 onion, sliced thin
4 slices of pineapple, cut in pieces
1 c. teriyaki sauce
1 c. edamame, shelled
1 c. rice
2 c. coconut milk
 Pour teriyaki sauce into a baking dish.  Add chicken and marinate up to 24 hours.
Prepare rice by using the coconut milk as liquid in your rice recipe.  Or just bring the milk to a boil and add rice.  Simmer covered for 20 minutes.  Put rice into a sprayed baking dish.
Pour the chicken and marinade into a large pan along with the onion, pepper and pineapple.  Cook for 15 minutes, until chicken is no longer pink. Add the edamame.  Pour this mixture over the rice.

Bake at 350 for about 15-20 minutes.


Monday, April 4, 2016

Shrimp Taco Lettuce Wraps

Ever since I have returned from Mexico, I find myself craving that good Mexican food at least once a week.  It happens after you spend a week eating nothing but fresh homemade tortillas and an array of amazing main dishes.  This recipe could certainly be made in a tortilla if you prefer.  I decided to up our veggies by serving it in lettuce wraps.
    This dish is served with a wonderful combination of smoky chipotle beans,  some charred vegetables and a wonderful garlic cream sauce.  YUM!  I found this recipe on Hello Fresh, and changed it up just a tiny bit.

For the garlic-lime crema:
In a small bowl combine 1 oz. sour cream, 1/2 t. lime zest, a squeeze of lime, and a small garlic clove that has been minced.  Season with a little sprinkle of salt and pepper.

For the smoky chipotle beans:
Cook:  1/2 c. diced onion
            1 garlic clove
cook in a little oil in a skillet until the onion is softened.  Add
1 can or 2 c. pinto beans,
1/4 t.-1/2 t. chipotle powder,
and a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
 Keep warm.

For the shrimp:
Heat a 1/2 T. oil in a skillet
1 green pepper, sliced thin
1 c. thinly sliced onion
Cook for 6-7 minutes until charred.  Add:
10 0z. shrimp
1/2 t. chipotle powder
Cook for 2 minutes until the shrimp are opaque.
Squeeze a 1/2 of a lime over the shrimp.

to serve:
Place the shrimp, and beans in lettuce cups.  Serve a sprinkle of the garlic lime crema on top.
If desired:  top taco with another squeeze of lime and some sliced avocado.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

3 Berry Sauce for Pancakes

This sauce could be used on pancakes, waffles, yogurt, or even ice cream.  We had it on pancakes topped with a dollop of whipped cream.  Perfect for a spring breakfast on the beach!

1 1/2 c. raspberries-fresh or frozen
1 c. strawberries-fresh or frozen
1 c. blueberries-fresh or frozen
1/2 c. water or orange juice
1/4 c. sugar
1/2 t. vanilla

Put all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil.  Turn down heat and simmer for 10-115 minutes.  Serve warm or cool.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Croque Monsieur

Looking for something different to do with your leftover Easter ham?  This recipe is well worth trying! This recipe makes two large sandwiches.  I used sourdough bread with great success.
1 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup hot milk
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Pinch nutmeg
6 ounces Gruyere, grated 
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
4 slices white sandwich bread, crusts removed
Dijon mustard
2 ounces baked Virginia ham, sliced but not paper thin
In a saucepan melt butter, then stir in flour.  Slowly whisk in hot milk.  Continue to whisk until mixture has thickened.  Take off heat.  Stir in salt, pepper, nutmeg, 1/4 c. Parmesan cheese and 1/2 c. Gruyere cheese.
Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Put bread on a cooky sheet and bake in oven for 5 minutes.  Flip bread and cook for another 5 minutes.  Remove from oven.  Spread two slices with mustard.  Top with ham slices, and grated gruyere cheese.  Put tops on sandwiches.  Spoon sauce over the top of the sandwiches and return to the oven.  Bake for 5 minutes.  Take out of oven and turn on the broiler.
Return sandwiches to oven and broil 2-3 minutes.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Orange Vanilla Simple Syrup for Fruit Salad

This was originally a recipe from the Pioneer Woman, that I tweeked just a tiny bit.  The syrup smells divine.  Just pour it over a fruit salad--any fruit you choose, toss and enjoy!  A light springtime treat. good at any meal.

1 c. sugar
1 c. orange juice
zest of one orange
1/2 t. vanilla

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan.  Bring to a boil,  Simmer 15 minutes.  Store in fridge until use.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Chicken Fajita Casserole

This is an easy recipe to put together on a busy evening.  It doesn't require a lot of unusual ingredients, and can be adapted to whatever you have in the house.  No corn tortillas?  Use flour tortillas!  No chicken?  Use ground beef, beef strips or shrimp.  You see what I mean?  After baking, you can top it with some sour cream dobs, olives, or guacamole.

8 corn tortillas
3 c. salsa-homemade or jarred
2 c. grated cheese-whatever kind you like (I used Cheddar)
1 jalapeno
2 chicken breasts
1 red or yellow or orange pepper
1/4 onion
1 t. oregano
1/2 t. chili powder
1/2 t. paprika
olives, sour cream, guacamole, refried beans (optional)
Put 1 1/2 cups of salsa in the bottom of an 8 x 8 baking pan.  Top with four whole corn tortillas.
If desired top tortillas with 1/2 c. refried beans.  Top with cheese.  Dice onion, pepper and chicken.  Cook in a small amount of oil until chicken is no longer pink.  Add spices.  Chop jalapeno and add in.
Put cooked chicken mixture on top of cheese in baking dish.  Top with 4 more tortillas, remaining 1 1/2 c. salsa, and 1 c. cheddar cheese.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Lemon Yogurt Cake with Blueberry Sauce

I am lucky enough to have both my son and my grand daughter over for dinner tonight.  I wanted to make a lovely dessert to celebrate the first day of spring.  I found this delicious recipe in the Williams and Sonoma Baking Book.  It only makes a 9" it's not too much.  Not too much to overindulge.   I made the sauce with frozen blueberries, but you could use fresh ones just might need a bit more water.  Serve this cake on a bed of the sauce with a dab of whipped cream on the top...divine!

For the sauce:
1 1/2 c. blueberries
1/2 c. of water
1/2 c. sugar
1 T. cornstarch mixed with 3 T. water
Bring blueberries, water and sugar to boil in a saucepan.  Allow to simmer for 10 minutes.  If your sauce needs water add a little.  Add the cornstarch mixture and continue to stir until slightly thicken.  Allow to cool..or if desired serve warm.

For the cake:
1 c. plain yogurt
2 c. flour
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
2 large eggs
1 c. sugar
1/2 t. lemon extract
1/4 c. butter, melted
Whisk the eggs and sugar together well.  Next whisk in the butter and lemon extract.  Whip in the yogurt and mix well.  Add the flour, salt, and baking soda.    Pour into a greased and floured 9" round baking pan.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Big Soft Ginger Cookies

It is my turn to provide snacks for the staff room this I have been busy baking each evening.  Tonight I made these cookies....they have just the perfect touch of spiciness and sweetness.  They are big enough to have just one with a cup of coffee and be happy.

2 1/4 c. flour
2 t. ginger
1 t. baking soda
3/4 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. cloves
1/4 t. salt
3/4 c. butter
1 c. white sugar
1 egg
1 T. water
 1/4 c. molasses
 2 T. sugar( save to roll the cookies in)

Beat sugar and butter until creamy.  Beat in the egg, then the molasses and water.  Add flour, spices, salt and baking soda.  Roll into balls the size of a walnut.  Roll the balls in the reserved sugar.  Place on a baking mat that has been sprayed with cooking spray, on a silicone mat, or on parchment paper.
Flatten cookies slightly.  Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.  Cool several minutes on cookie sheet before moving to a cooling rack.

Jamie Oliver's Bombay Chicken

Are you feeling a bit adventurous tonight?  Why not try this Jamie Oliver recipe that combines cumin, turmeric, cilantro, ginger and lemon in a spice mix that coats chicken, potatoes and red peppers?  It is not too spicey,  yet full of flavor.  This recipe serves two.

12 oz. small red potatoes
1/2 t. turmeric
1 t. cumin
1 lemon
1/4 oz. frsh cilantro
1 red pepper
1 t. ground ginger
2 chicken breasts

Cut potatoes in 1/4's or 1/8's-depending on the size of your potatoes.  Put in a pot of water and bring to a boil.  Boil for 7 minutes.  Remove from heat and drain in a colander.
In a bowl combine the turmeric, cumin, zest from the lemon, cilantro, and ginger.  Cut the pepper into thin strips and add to the bowl..  Then mix in the drained potatoes.  Cut 3 lemon slices from the lemon and set aside.  Juice the remainder of the lemon and mix into the bowl.  Spray a baking dish with cooking spray.  Put all ingredients from the bowl into the dish.  Place three lemon slice on top.  Top with chicken.  Bale at 400 for 25 minutes.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Parmesan Roasted Asparagus

Yes it's that time of year again when asparagus is fresh and looking so good.  This recipe bakes up asparagus in just 15 minutes.  It has a little sprinkle of parmesan and breadcrumbs just to yum it up a bit.

  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh asparagus, trimmed
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 3/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
Put the asparagus and olive oil in a large ziplock bag.  Shake it up to coat the asparagus.  Add remaining ingredients to the bag with the asparagus and shake again.  Put all of this onto a cookie sheet and bake a 425 for 10-15 minutes.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Blackberry Filled Coffee Cake

I always pick lot of blackberries when they are ripe and freeze them for the winter months.  Now I happen to have quite a few bags of frozen berries just waiting to be used up.  Tomorrow I need to provide a snack for our staff room, so this seemed the perfect match.  I just doubled the recipe and baked it in a 13 x 9 pan.  If you do not like the tartness of the blackberries, sprinkle a tablespoon over sugar over the top of them.

  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened and divided
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 12 oz. container fresh or frozen blackberries
  •  Crumb Topping:
  •  2 1/2 Tbsp. unsalted butter,softened
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
Cream sugar and half the butter.  Add vanilla and eggs.  Add flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Slowly mix in the buttermilk.
Spray an 8 x 8 pan.   Put half the dough into the pan.  Top with blackberries.  Top with remaining dough.  Make crumb topping by mixing all ingredients together.  Sprinkle on top.  Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Maple Walnut Granola

  This recipe is from a wonderful cookbook, Food To Live By.  In this age of on line recipe finding, I fear cookbooks are not as well utilized as in the past.  This cookbooks is full of wonderful healthy recipes, with beautiful illustrations.  It is worth looking at. 
   Today I decided to make a batch of granola.  Ever since our return to Mexico, we have been enjoying a nice bowl of mixed fruit with yogurt and granola for breakfast.  Rather than pay the outrageous prices for granola that is healthy at the grocery store, you can mix up a batch and know exactly what you are eating.  The only expensive ingredient in this recipe is real maple syrup.  You can purchase this at Costco for a bit of savings.  I did not have almonds or sunflower seeds in my pantry this morning.  I substituted hazelnuts and walnuts.  Feel free to use whatever nuts you like.  I happen to like the flavors of maple and walnut together.

4 1/2 c. old fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
3/4 c. sunflower seeds (I used hazelnuts)
1 1/2 c. almonds (I used walnuts)
2 T. cinnamon

Mix all these ingredients in a large bowl.  Then add:
1/3 c. canola oil
1 1/4 c. pure maple syrup
Stir and mix well.
Spread out on a large cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.  Stir with a spatula. Bake another 15 minutes or until light golden brown.   Cool.  If desired mix in 1/2 c. raisins after cooling.

This can be stored at room temperature for one month or frozen for up to 6 months. It can be served directly from the freezer as it does not freeze hard.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Fussili Al Forno

This is sort of like lasagna...but without all the steps lasagna involves.  It is a Hello Fresh recipe, with a few alterations.  If you are unable to use fusilli, any other shaped noodle will be a good substitute.  I found fusilli in the bulk bins at Winco.

1# ground beef
6 oz. fusilli
1/2 c. shredded mozzarella
1/2 c. shredded parmesan
15 oz. crushed tomatoes
8 oz. spinach
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 T. oregano
1/2 T. basil
1T. parsley
1 t. nutmeg
4 oz. ricotta

Cook fusilli in a pot of boiling water for 10 minutes.  Drain.  Cook ground beef and garlic until beef is no longer pink.  Drain off any fat.  Add spices an tomatoes.  Stir well.  Add in spinach and cook about 5 minutes until wilted.  Stir in the ricotta cheese.  Next stir in the drained fusilli.  Put into a sprayed casserole dish.  Cover with cheeses.  Bake at 350 for  10-15 minutes until cheese is melted.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Baileys Chocolate Mousse

This dessert is beyond delicious.  It is easy to make.  I was able to make it after work and serve it for dinner that night.  It looks so decadent served in individual dishes with a topping of whipped cream and a hazelnut or two.
This recipe came from the website Lemon Tree Dwelling.

  • 2 tsp. unflavored gelatin
  • 2 Tbsp. cold water
  • ¼ c. boiling water
  • ½ c. sugar
  • 3 T. cocoa
  • 1½ c. heavy cream, very cold
  • ½ c. Bailey's, very cold
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • whipped cream
  • 8 hazelnuts
  1. Before preparing mousse, prep bowl and beaters by placing in the freezer for 15 minutes to chill.
  1. Sprinkle gelatin over cold water in small bowl; stir and let stand 1 minute to soften.
  2. Add boiling water; stir until gelatin is completely dissolved. Let stand to cool.
  3. Stir together sugar and cocoa in small mixing bowl;   add to the prep bowl that has been in the freezer.  Slowly add heavy cream.
  4. Beat at medium speed until stiff peaks form; gradually pour in Bailey's, vanilla, and gelatin mixture, beating continuously at high speed until well-blended and soft peaks form.
  5.  Place in refrigerator to chill.
  6. Chill 1 hour or until ready to serve.  Spoon into individual dishes.  Top with whipped cream an a hazelnut or two.