Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Chicken, Caramelized Onion, & Parmesan Risotto

I had planned our whole dinner menu out a few weeks ago without looking at the weather and of course we had multiple 75 degree days in the end of October.  It was awesome!!!  But not great weather for the soup I had planned.  So I rummaged through our pantry to see if I could find something else to make.  As soon as I saw the box of risotto I remembered seeing a chicken & caramelized onion recipe on Pinterest.  I just followed my Parmesan Risotto recipe and added chicken & onions.  It was so so good!  So creamy and comforting!  But suitable for warm weather too :)

Chicken, Caramelized Onion, & Parmesan Risotto
3 to 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (or one 32 oz box)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc (I didn't have so I just used all broth)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
2 or 3 chicken breasts or thighs
1 large onion
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon sugar

Drizzle chicken with olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper.  Roast in the oven at 375 for 20-30 minutes until cooked through. 
While chicken is cooking, melt 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet.  Add sliced onion and sugar and cook over low heat until onions are caramelized. 

In a medium saucepan, bring the broth to a simmer and keep warm over low heat.  In a separate medium saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon (or whisk), until the onion is transparent, about 5 minutes. Add the rice and cook, stirring, until it is well coated with the butter and starts to turn translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the wine (or broth) and simmer gently until all the liquid is absorbed, 3 to 5 minutes.

Ladle 1/2 cup of the warm broth into the rice mixture and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the broth is absorbed. Repeat, adding 1/2 cup of broth at a time, until the rice is cooked through but still firm, 20 to 25 minutes total.

Shred the chicken.  Add the chicken, onions, salt, pepper, and 1/2 cup of Parmesan to the risotto.  Adjust seasoning to taste. Serve immediately, topping with additional Parmesan.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Roasted Vegetables with Balsamic

I love roasted veggies.  There is something about roasting them that really deepens the flavor and gives them the best crispy texture!  I've never thought about roasting peppers for a side dish until I had them this way from the hot bar at whole foods.  They were so tender but still crispy!  I knew I needed to add some roasted garlic and after searching a few recipes I decided to toss them in a little balsamic too.  They are soo good.  I've found myself making them again the following week and wanting to again next week, at least for lunches!  

Roasted Vegetables with Balsamic

1 red onion
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
1 green pepper
1/2 cup baby carrots
1 cup halved mushrooms
3 garlic cloves, minced 
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 tablespoon balsamic
1 teaspoon dried basil
salt & pepper

Chop onion & peppers into large bite-sized pieces.  Place onions, peppers, and carrots in a single layer on baking pan.  Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with minced garlic, basil, salt, and pepper.  Toss to coat, then bake at 375 for 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven and add mushrooms.  Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil, balsalmic, and additional salt if desired and toss to coat.  Bake for an additional 15 minutes until veggies are tender and slightly browned on the edges.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Crock Pot Italian Turkey Matballs

I had this really yummy lunch at Whole Foods a few weeks ago and haven't been able to get it out of my head.  So I finally decided to try and recreate it!  It was turkey meatballs, mashed potatoes, and these really great roasted veggies that I'll share a recipe for soon.  Complete comfort food and oh so yummy!  I decided to try making the meatballs in the crock pot and found a few recipes online to base them off of.  These were amazing, so so tasty and the sauce was really flavorful after the meatballs cooked in it all day!

Crock Pot Italian Turkey Meatballs
based off of Skinny Taste
mine yielded 14 meatballs (I would totally double this recipe if I were you!)

1 lb ground turkey breast 93% lean
1/4 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
1/4 cup parmesan, grated
1/4 cup fresh italian parsley, finely chopped
1 egg
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, diced
1 tsp kosher salt + fresh pepper
28 oz cans crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley

In a large bowl, combine ground turkey, breadcrumbs, parmesan, parsley, egg, and seasonings.  Using clean hands, mix all the ingredients and form small meatballs without packing them too tight so they stay tender.  I got 14 meatballs.

Pour crushed tomatoes into the crock pot with garlic, onion, parsley, and salt & pepper.  Drop meatballs into the sauce, cover and set crock pot to low, 4 to 6 hours.  (Mine were perfect after 4 hours.)

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Creamy Chicken and Brie Soup

I told you I had lots of soups coming!  This soup was great, but it honestly turned out really different than I was anticipating it!  I thought it would be really creamy and smooth and just taste like brie.  However, brie doesn't really melt like I thought.  It more stayed in chunks and you just got pieces of it in each bite.  It was delicious, very light and flavorful! 

Creamy Chicken and Brie Soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 sweet onion, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
3 cups raw spinach, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
2 cups milk
1/2 cup half and half
8 ounces brie cheese, torn/chopped into small pieces

Heat a large pot on medium heat and add olive oil. Add onions and peppers with a sprinkle of salt and saute until soft, about 6-8 minutes. Stir in spinach and garlic. Add butter, and once it melts whisk in flour to create a roux. Make sure you whisk all ingredients together.

Add chicken to the pot, along with milk and chicken stock. Allow soup to come to a simmer, then add brie and continue stirring until it all melts – about 5 minutes. Stir in half and half. Turn heat up high and let soup come to a boil, stirring every few minutes so cheese does not stick to the bottom. At this point, you may see some separate of stock/milk, but with a few stirs and time to simmer, the soup will come together.

Once soup boils, turn it down to a simmer and allow to cook for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve hot!


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

No Bake Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bites

I knew these would be a great little one handed snack to have in the fridge and they were really yummy!  They really tasted more like dessert than something healthy!  Two of them held me over when I was a little hungry between meals and gave me some energy.  I would totally recommend doubling this recipe because these went way too quick.

last three left!

No Bake Oatmeal Peanut Butter Bites
via How Sweet Eats
yields 15 bites

1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup ground flaxseed
1/4 cup sliced almonds, chopped
2 tablespoons chia seeds (didn't have so I left these out)
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
a pinch of salt
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter, melted and slightly cooled
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon honey
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons mini chocolate chips
1/4 cup ground peanuts or ground almonds, to roll the balls in


Combine oats, almonds, flaxseed, chia seeds, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl and stir.

Melt peanut butter and allow it to cool slightly (I melted mine in the microwave for about 30 seconds, then stirred), then stir in honey and vanilla extract until it's combined. Once peanut butter has cooled a bit, pour it over the oat mixture and mix well with a spoon then bring together with your hands. Once mixture is sticking together, fold in chocolate chips.

Roll dough into golf-ball sized (or slightly smaller) balls, then roll in ground peanuts or ground almonds. These can be eaten at room temp but we really like them stored in the fridge!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Tortellini Spinach Bake w Creamy Lemon Sauce

This was amazing!  Every bite I kept saying mmmm, we loved it!  I later made it for a friend who just had a baby and also for my bible study group's freezer meal swap (it froze and reheated well I think!).  The lemon was such a bright surprise.  I added mushrooms in ours as well, but you can definitely leave that out if you wish.

Tortellini Spinach Bake in Creamy Lemon Sauce
via Our Best Bites

12 oz bag Cheese Tortellini (I used frozen)
4 strips bacon, diced
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 Tbs flour
2 C milk
¾ tsp kosher salt
⅛ tsp black pepper
1 1/2 tsp dry basil
¼ tsp red pepper flakes (1/2 tsp or more if you like spicy)
1 medium lemon
2 C loosely packed fresh spinach, roughly chopped (I used 8 oz frozen, dethawed and squeezed water out)
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
¾ C grated mozzarella cheese, divided
¾ C grated Parmesan cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Fill a large stock pot with water and bring to a boil.  Add tortellini and cook according to package instructions.

Place bacon and mushrooms in a medium sized skillet on the stove-top at medium-high heat.  Cook until bacon is crisp.  Remove bacon from pan with slotted spoon and set on paper towels to drain.  Reserve two tablespoons bacon drippings in pan and discard the rest.  Add garlic to pan and cook until fragrant and tender, about 1 minute.  Add flour to pan and stir with a whisk for about 1 minute. Slowly add milk and continue to stir with whisk until smooth.  Add salt, pepper, basil, and red pepper flakes and bring sauce to a simmer.

While sauce is heating, use a microplane grater or a fine-holed cheese grater to zest lemon.  Then cut lemon in half and remove juice.  Add 2 teaspoons zest and 1 tablespoon lemon juice to sauce.  (Note:  I really love lemon so I added this to my tastes.  If you don’t want as strong of a lemon flavor, I suggest cutting it down to 1 teaspoon zest and 2 teaspoons lemon juice) .  Continue to stir until thickened, 2-3 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Drain tortellini and place back in stock pot.  Reserve 1 tablespoon of the cooked bacon and add the rest to the pasta mixture.  Add spinach, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese.  Add sauce and gently stir to combine.  Place pasta mixture in an 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish and top with remaining 1/4 cup mozzarella and 1/4 cup parmesan and also crumbled bacon.

Cover pan with foil and bake for 20 minutes.  Remove foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, until cheese on top is melted and pasta is bubbly throughout.  Remove from oven and serve!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Crock Pot Chicken Tacos

Ok, I can't claim that I found this recipe.  This was a freezer meal courtesy of my friend Sarah but it was too good not to share the recipe.  And since I made it twice in two weeks I figured I should post it!  These were incredible!  Can't believe how easy they were to throw together!  The chicken is so tender and flavorful!

Crock Pot Chicken Tacos
via Sarah

4 frozen chicken breasts
1 jar salsa
1 packet taco seasoning
1 green pepper
1 red pepper
1 onion
soft tacos/tortillas
shredded cheese, optional
sour cream, optional

Slice peppers and onion.  Add chicken, veggies, salsa, and taco seasoning to crock pot and cook on low for 6 hours.  Serve in tortillas with cheese and sour cream if desired.  Amazing!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Spicy Roasted Corn Soup

I was eating lunch at Whole Foods with my friend Emily today and they had a corn and pablano chowder on their hot bar.  I had to try some because it reminded me of this soup I made a few weeks which was awesome!  (Guess I need to catch up on my blog posts!)  I had it pinned for a long time, but kept looking over it for some reason.  I'm so glad I finally made it because it was so so good.  Its a creamy soup, but not too thick at all.  It just had such great flavor.  The roasting of the corn really made the soup sweet with just a touch of spice from the jalopeno.  Yum!

Spicy Roasted Corn Soup

1 lb bag frozen white corn
1/2 cup diced onion
1/4 cup diced celery
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups milk
2 cups chicken stock
1 lime
small bunch fresh chopped cilantro

Preheat oven to broiler.  Spread corn out on a baking sheet and also place jalopeno on pan.  Broil until golden, watching closely.  You will need to toss corn and also turn jalopeno.  The jalopeno might need more time after corn is golden.  I cooked the jalopeno until it was blackened on all sides. 
Next saute onion and celery in stockpot until softened in a touch of olive oil.  Add butter and flour and whisk until combined for about one minute.  Whisk in milk until combined.  Add in chicken stock, corn, and jalopeno.  Heat through.
Slowly add lime juice and stir so it won’t curdle.  Mix in cilantro, taste, and season if needed.
Garnish with avocado and serve with tortilla chips!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Mini Spinach & Bacon Quiches

Another quick and easy one handed breakfast!  I saw a similar pin on pinterest, but when I clicked on the link it was a bad link, so I couldn't find the recipe!  I just based these off the recipe I used for these souffles.  These were great, really delicious.  They were so easy to throw together on Sunday and keep in the fridge to reheat quickly each morning.   You can add whatever you would like to make different combinations.  You could also use pie crust instead of crescent or even just make them crustless.

Mini Spinach & Bacon Quiches

1 package Cresent Rolls
5 Eggs
1/2 cup Shredded Cheese
4 oz chopped Spinach (I used frozen, dethawed)
1/4 chopped Onion
1/4 chopped Red Pepper
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons Milk or Half & Half
4 slices Bacon, cooked and chopped

Preheat oven to 350.  Spray muffin tin with non stick cooking spray.  Unroll crescent rolls and tear them apart to fit the bottoms and sides of the 12 muffin tins (there are 8 in a package).  Mix remaining ingredients and pour them equally into the 12 muffin tins.  Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until eggs are cooked through.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Smoky White Bean Chicken Chili

I have been making a lot of soups and chilis lately so get ready for lots of good fall recipes!  I love making new things and mixing up classics and this recipe caught my eye immediately.  It sounded so warm and different.  It definitely was!  It was smokey and sweet and had a little bit of a kick.  Don't worry, if you don't like spicy, this one isn't really too spicy, so if you do, you may want to add more green chilis and spices!  

Smoky White Bean Chicken Chili
via Tasty Kitchen (from How Sweet Eats)

4 slices Bacon, Chopped
1 whole Large Onion, Diced
3 cloves Garlic, Chopped
1 whole Rotisserie Chicken, Shredded Or Diced (or 4 chicken breasts like I used)
1 teaspoon Smoky Paprika
1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
1 teaspoon Onion Powder Or Granulated Onion
½ teaspoons Garlic Powder Or Granulated Garlic
½ teaspoons Chipotle Chile Powder, Or To Taste
6 cups Chicken Stock Or Broth
1 can (28-ounce Size) Roasted, Diced Tomatoes
4 cans (14.5 Ounce Size) White Beans, Cannelini Or Great Northern
2 cans (4 Ounce Size) Diced Green Chiles
Salt And Pepper, to taste
½ cups Grated Cotija Cheese, Optional For Topping
¼ cups Chopped Fresh Cilantro, Optional For Topping

In a hot Dutch oven, cook bacon for about 3 minutes.

Add the chicken, smoky paprika, ground cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, and chipotle to the pot and continue to cook for an additional 10 minutes (covered) so that the chicken gets infused with the aromatics and the spices.

Stir in the chicken stock, diced tomatoes, white beans, and green chiles. Add salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a slow boil and cook, uncovered, stirring as needed until the liquid has reduced to your level of preference.

Add cotija cheese and chopped cilantro for topping if desired.

This is great with cornbread or a crusty bread and a salad.

Note: a can of the white beans can be reserved, pureed or well mashed, and then added to chili for thickening at the same time as the other beans are added to the chili.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Freezer Breakfast Burritos

It seems like most of the time now a days I find myself only having one hand free and the other arm holding a sweet baby.  One handed pre-prepared breakfasts are great to have for mornings.  It makes life so much easier since I wake up starving and either have to eat quickly before feeding baby, or sometimes during, or right away after.  Its also super easy to grab for Corey as he is running out the door.  I've been making some muffins and even bagels, but needed some new ideas!  These were perfect because they couldn't have taken me more than 30 minutes to throw together and only take 2 minutes to heat up in the morning!  Just take them out of the freezer and pop them in the microwave.  I'm not going to lie, I think fresh eggs are definitely better than frozen ones, but these did the job and Corey said he didn't even notice a difference.

Freezer Bacon Egg and Cheese Breakfast Burritos
via Iowa Girl Eats
yields 8

6 strips bacon
12 eggs
salt & pepper
hot sauce, to taste
8 large (8″) flour tortillas
1/2 – 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 – 1/2 cup salsa

Cook bacon in a large skillet until crisp. Drain on a paper towel, then chop into bite-sized pieces. Set aside.

Crack eggs into a large bowl, then season with salt, pepper and hot sauce. Whisk until well beaten. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, then spray generously with non-stick spray (or just use a drizzle of olive oil like I do).  Pour in eggs and scramble until set, but are still glossy. Remove to a plate and set aside.

Lay tortillas on a clean, dry surface. Divide eggs and bacon between the tortillas, then top with salsa and cheese. Fold over the top of each tortilla, then fold in the sides, and continue rolling to form a burrito. Wrap individually in plastic wrap, then freeze in a large freezer bag.

To reheat: unwrap and discard plastic wrap, then wrap burrito in a paper towel. Microwave for 1 1/2-2 minutes, or until hot.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Spicy Garlic Cashew Chicken

This chicken was so flavorful!  The combination of flavors was great and it was really easy to throw together. 

Spicy Garlic Cashew Chicken
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup cashews
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup olive oil
4 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 jalapeƱo peppers, stems removed
1 tablespoon lime juice, plus lime wedges for garnish
2 tablespoons water
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a food processor or blender, combine cashews, cilantro, oil, garlic, soy sauce, brown sugar, jalapeno, lime juice and water. Blend to a smooth paste. Add salt and pepper to taste. Reserve and a third of the marinade to serve with the chicken. Refrigerate reserved marinade until ready to serve.

Add the remaining 2/3 marinade to a large ziplock bag. Sprinkle the chicken thighs with salt and pepper and place in the ziplock bag. Combine so that thighs are evenly coated with marinade. Place in the refrigerator to allow to marinate for several hours or overnight. Bring the chicken to room temperature before cooking.

When ready to cook, prepare grill. Remove chicken from marinade and place on grill. Grill, flipping, as needed, until golden and crisp. Serve with reserved marinade, lime wedges, and cilantro.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Double Bean Burgers with Avocado Cream

I never really thought I would want to try a bean burger until I saw these posted on How Sweet Eats.  She always makes things look so good, so I asked Corey if they sounded like something he would like and they did so I gave them a shot.  They were so tasty!  The burgers had great flavor, really garlicky and the avocado cream on top was the perfect combo! 

Double Bean Burgers
via How Sweet Eats
makes 6 burgers

1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 large egg + 1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
6 whole grain buns, toasted if desired

In a large bowl, mash beans with a potato masher or fork. Add in cilantro, garlic, paprika, onion powder, salt and pepper, mixing to combine. In a smaller bowl, lightly beat eggs and add in 1 tablespoon olive oil and panko, stirring to mix. Add the egg mixture to the beans, and mix thoroughly to combine, bringing it together with your hands if needed. Separate the beans into 6 equal sections and form patties.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add 1 tablespoon olive oil (or as much as you need). Add burgers and cook on each side until golden, about 5 minutes. Remove and serve with avocado cream on whole wheat buns!

Avocado Basil Cream
2/3 cup sour cream
1 avocado, chopped
10 medium basil leaves, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
pinch of pepper

Add basil and avocado to a food processor, blending to combine. Once somewhat smooth, add in sour cream and blend again until combined. Add in salt and pepper, taste, and season more if desired.  (Note: I couldn't find good looking basil at the grocery when I made these, so I left it out and it was still great!)

Thursday, September 20, 2012


This granola was something I made a few times in the week or two before Reese's arrival.  I was fully anticipating her coming anytime and wanted to have something on hand that would make for a quick healthy snack.  Then I just got addicted and couldn't stop making it!  I've tried making granola a few times before but always ended up burning it.  I cooked this slowly at a low temperature and checked it every 5 minutes to make sure that didn't happen.  This stuff is so good I had a hard time keeping myself from grabbing handfuls of it out of the tupperware.

Slightly adapted from Tasty Kitchen

3 cups Old Fashion Oats
3/4 cups Almond, Roughly Chopped
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
1 stick Unsalted Butter
1/4 cups Honey (or Agave Nectar)
2/3 cups Brown Sugar
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.  In a large bowl, combine the oats, almonds, salt and cinnamon and set aside.  In a medium saucepan, melt the butter, honey and brown sugar until the sugar has completely dissolved.  Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract.  Pour the butter mixture over the oat mixture and stir to combine until everything is well coated.  Spread the granola mixture onto a baking sheet, leaving a few large clumps.

Bake the granola for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and break up the pieces to ensure even baking.  Place the baking sheet back into the oven for another 5 minutes.  Remove the sheet pan from the oven and give it one more toss to break up some of the pieces and place back into the oven for another 5emove the baking sheet from the oven and let it cool completely.  It gets much crunchier as it cools, so you can then decide if you need to cook it longer.  Store in air tight tupperware container.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Margarita Pizza

I'm finally back to blogging!  Our sweet baby girl is here and is 6 weeks old now!  I have just started getting back in the kitchen in the past few weeks after being generously given so many great meals by our friends and family!  I will try and get back to posting, but they may be a little farther between for a little bit as we are still adjusting to life with a newborn!  Check our family blog for updates on Reese!

Lately I'm finding myself making meals with only one arm free or in under 15 minutes.  I think the thing that works best has been prepping the meal earlier in the day and cooking it later.  This meal was so easy and definitely could fit into any of those categories!  I also loved getting to use up some of the many cherry tomatoes and fresh garlic we grew!

1 refrigerated pizza dough
olive oil
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
cherry or roma tomatoes, sliced
fresh basil, sliced thin
mozzarella cheese

Lay out dough and brush with olive oil.  Spread out minced garlic then add toppings.  Bake according to dough instructions.  Yummy!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Blackened Fish Tacos w/ Remoulade Sauce

Corey loves fish tacos, so I've tried many different recipes looking for the best one.  I will usually just blacken some light white fish and throw in whatever toppings we have in the fridge, i.e they end up something like this recipe.  This time I wanted to try making a sauce for the fish tacos and came across this one via Pinterest.  This sauce would also be incredible on Shrimp Po Boys (as he suggests).

Blackened Fish Tacos w/ Remoulade Sauce
3 large fillets light white fish
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon blackened seasoning
6-8 (6 inch) tortillas
mixed greens
1 cup diced fresh tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped red onion
1/2 jalapeno (seeded and chopped) (optional)
garlic powder to taste
1 lime (juice to taste)
1 handful cilantro (chopped)
salt and pepper to taste
remoulade sauce (see below)

Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.  Dip the fish into the butter, sprinkle on the seasoning and pat it in.  Place the fish in the skillet and cook until it just starts to blacken but not burn, about 2 minutes, flip it and do the same to the other side. 

While fish is cooking mix together pico de gallo (tomatoes, red onion, jalapeno, garlic powder, lime juice, cilantro, salt & pepper). 

Assemble tacos with fish, mixed greens, pico de gallo, and remoulade sauce.

Remoulade Sauce

1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon creole mustard (I just used dijon)
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 teaspoon horseradish
1 small clove garlic, minced finely
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon capers (I actually left this out)
1 green onion (chopped) (left this out too)
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika
hot sauce to taste

Blend everything in a food processor until smooth (or if you're like me just in a bowl).


Thursday, July 12, 2012

PW's amazing Grilled Chicken

You must absolutely make this grilled chicken ASAP!  It is so fantastic, so flavorful and a little sweet, and who doesn't like bacon?  I don't know how the Pioneer Woman does it, but she always comes up with these amazing recipes.  This chicken did not dissappoint!

PW's Simple Scrumptious Grilled Chicken

6 whole Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts

1/4 cup Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 cup Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
1 Tablespoons Steak Seasoning (I Used Montreal)

1/4 cup Honey
4 pieces Thick Cut Bacon
1.5 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
1/2 Tablespoon Hot Sauce

Slice the chicken breasts into thick strips diagonally. Combine marinade ingredients in a plastic zipper bag.  Throw in chicken, seal bag, and marinate in fridge for at least 3 hours (or overnight).

Remove chicken from marinade and discard marinade. Grill chicken on both sides until completely done.

While chicken is grilling, make the sauce: Fry the bacon in a heavy skillet until slightly crisp. Remove bacon and drain on paper towels. Pour off and discard grease but do not clean skillet. Set the skillet over medium-low heat and add honey, Worcestershire, and hot sauce. Stir to combine and allow to bubble slightly. Crumble bacon, add to the sauce, then remove from heat and set aside.

Place chicken into a big heatproof bowl, then pour the sauce over the chicken. Toss to coat.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Moroccan Salmon Salad

A few months ago I hosted our monthly Alpha Phi girls dinner and my friend Ally brought over a salad with this amazing Moroccan Vinaigrette.  It was sweet but spicy and unlike any vinaigrette I'd had before.  I of couse couldn't forget about it so I decided to re-create the salad Ally brought over and top it with salmon to make a meal out of it and also added some goat cheese.  This salad was incredible, seriously, thanks to Ally for finding such a great vinaigrette!

Moroccan Salmon Salad
vinaigrette via Whole New Mom

2 salmon filets
lettuce of choice, I used mixed greens and spinach
1/2 cucumber, diced
4-6 radisshes, thinly sliced
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced or diced2 roma tomatoes, thinly sliced
2 ounches goat cheese crumbled (more or less if you'd like)
morrocan vinaigrette (recipe follows)

Roast salmon filets at 375 for 12-15 minutes until flake easily with a fork.  Compile salads in two bowls with lettuce, veggies, and goat cheese.  Top with warm salmon & vinaigrette.  Serve!

Morrocan Vinaigrette:

1/3 cup olive oil
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
3/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 small clove garlic, finely minced, or a pinch of garlic powder
1 very small pinch cayenne (ground red) pepper
2 tablespoons tightly packed minced fresh parsley (or 2 tsp dried parsley)
1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
lots of freshly ground pepper (optional)

Combine all ingredients and mix well.  Taste and adjust seasonings adding more lemon juice or vinegar if you like.  Store unused portion in refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Roasted Pesto Potatoes

I have been dying to make these ever since I saw this recipe.  Yes I realize Chelsey posted these over a year ago, but my mind is always thinking cooking and little ideas like this one do not leave my mind :)  While I was a little disappointed after building them up so much, Corey absolutely loved them!  And I think my disappointment had to do with the brand of pesto I bought.  I wish I could find fresh basil somewhere, but it always looks like its on its last limb at the grocery.  And I'm pretty sure this streak of over 100 degree heat is never going to let my poor little basil plants grow.  I will absolutely make these again with a new type of pesto, or with some homemade!

Roasted Pesto Potatoes

8-10 small red skinned potatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
2-3 tablespoons pesto
salt & pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425 (or you can make these guys on the grill!).  Wash and cut potatoes into 1 inch cubes.  Drizzle with olive oil and salt & pepper and toss to coat.  Roast potatoes for 40-45 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until they are tender with a fork and have a nice golden outer crust.  Allow potatoes to cool for a few minutes then toss with pesto until coated.  Serve warm!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Corn on the Cob

Sorry I have been missing!  We were really busy during June and honestly I just kept forgetting to upload pictures to my computer so I could post recipes!  I am back now though, with plenty to share :)

Corn on the cob is so easy to make, but I didn't know how for the longest time, so I thought I would share this simple "recipe"!  There are a number of ways to make it, I shared how to grill it here, but boiling it has to be the easiest way and fresh corn during the summer is so tasty!

How to Boil Perfect Corn on the Cob

you'll need an ear for each person you're serving (plus extra!)

Start by bringing a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Peel husks from corn and clean as best as possible.  Add corn to boiling water and cook covered for 5-10 minutes until desired tenderness.  If you like your corn tender, leave it for 10 minutes and it should be perfect!  Remove from water and allow to cool.  Serve with butter and salt & pepper!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Carolina BBQ Ribs & Homemade BBQ Sauce

We made some awesome ribs a couple weekends ago and I have been dying to share the recipe, but have been on vacation and busy since returning!  We bought some ribs on a whim and Corey looked up and found these two awesome recipes for a Carolina rub and a great bbq sauce.  They made the ribs so flavorful!

Carolina BBQ Rub

1 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1/8 cup paprika

Mix all ingredients together and rub into meat on both sides.  For our ribs, we grilled them on each side about 10 minutes.

Homemade BBQ Sauce

1 cups ketchup
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2.5 tablespoons light brown sugar
2.5 tablespoons sugar
1/4 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper
1/4 tablespoon onion powder
1/4 tablespoon ground mustard
1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients. Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat to simmer. Cook uncovered, stirring frequently, for 1 hour 15 minutes.  (We found this recipe right before cooking the ribs, so it only had time to simmer for maybe 20-30 minutes.  I think if it simmered longer it would have cut out more of the bitterness from the vinegar, but to us it gave it a nice kick!).  This is a semi spicy, but sweet, and full of flavor bbq sauce!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Deviled Eggs

Deviled eggs are by far one of my all time favorite appetizers!  I have tried multiple times to make them, but always screw up the hard boiling part, and end up with shells that don't want to peel off easily.  Lauren posted this fool-proof method and I have been using it ever since to make lots of hard boiled eggs.  They are so nice to have to grab as a quick breakfast in the morning.  I decided to make deviled eggs for Mother's day as a little snack while we were waiting on dinner to be ready.  Once you get the hard boiling down, the rest is easy!

Deviled Eggs
yields 12
hard boil method via Call Me Mrs. Rapp

6 eggs
3 tablespoons light mayo
1 teaspoon mustard
salt & pepper

Place eggs in a saucepan. Pour in enough water to cover the eggs fully.  Bring water to a boil, then turn off heat. Let eggs sit for 15 minutes.  Remove to a bowl or dish and let cool. Once cool, peel shell from eggs and slice in half.  Pop yokes out into a bowl.  Mash yokes and mix in mayo and mustard.  Season with salt & pepper, taste and add additional of anything if needed to your preference!  Fill yoke holes with yoke mixture and sprinkle with paprika.  Serve chilled.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Asian Zing Chicken Shish-ka-bobs

I totally got this idea from Bdubs.  :)  These are Corey's favorite wings there and I decided I could come up with a similar sweet/spicy sauce for some shish-ka-bobs!  They were awesome and the easiest ever.

my 3 sauces

so so good!

Asian Zing Chicken Shish-ka-bobs

2 tablespoons soy
1/4 cup sweet chili sauce
1 tablespoon sriracha (hot chili sauce)
4-5 wooden skewers
3 chicken breasts
1 red pepper
1 red onion
a handful of cherry tomatoes

1/4 cup sweet chili sauce
1 teaspoon sriracha (or more if you like spicy)

Cut chicken, red pepper, and onion into chunks that will fit on your skewers.  Mix marinade ingredients in a large resealable bag or shallow tupperware.  Add chicken and veggies, seal (or cover) and shake around to coat with marinade.  Allow to marinade at least 15 minutes or longer if you have time. 

While chicken is marinading, soak skewers in water and preheat grill. 

Alternate chicken and veggies on skewers and grill until chicken is cooked through, turning halfway through cook time.  Mine usually take around 20 minutes total. 

Mix sauce ingredients and brush ka-bobs to coat in extra sauce.  Delicious!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Honey Dijon Chicken

This was a really great and simple marinade you could use on chicken, fish, or pork even.  I baked ours in the oven, but it would also be great on the grill too!  I served with a salad and carrots and sliced the leftovers over a salad for lunch the next day...very yummy!

Honey Dijon Chicken

1/3 cup Dijon mustard
2 T apple cider vinegar
2 T honey
1T lemon juice
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
Chicken breasts

Combine mustard, vinegar, and honey in a small bowl and whisk until smooth. Add spices and stir. Prepare chicken breasts and place in a large plastic storage bag. Pour marinade over the chicken, close bag and shake bag gently and squeeze to evenly coat chicken. Refrigerate one hour, or up to overnight.  Cook as desired.  I baked mine at 350 for 25 minutes (or until cooked through).

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Shrimp Po Boys

This is an all-time favorite of Corey's and as soon as I saw the Pioneer Woman post a recipe with slaw I knew I had to make po boys!  The slaw was perfectly sweet, creamy, and crunchy.  I kept the shrimp really simply by just sprinkling with cajun seasoning and a little garlic powder and dredging in a thin layer of flour.  We added tomatoes & spicy brown mustard as well.  Maybe next time I'll try to come up with a fun voodoux sauce like Papa Roux!  These were super easy to throw together and went perfect with some red beans & rice and some sweet summer roasted veggies.

Shrimp Po Boys
serves 3
shrimp adapted from How Sweet
cole slaw adapted from Pioneer Woman

One loaf French Bread (we used Jimmy John's)
1/2 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
cajun seasoning
garlic powder
olive oil
about 3 cups cole slaw mix (shredded cabbage & carrots)
1/4 cup fat free half & half
1/4 cup fat free mayo
1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon sugar
Salt & Cayenne Pepper to taste
2 roma tomatoes, sliced
spicy brown mustard, if desired

After peeling and deveining shrimp pat them dry with a paper towel.  Sprinkle with cajun seasoning and garlic powder.  Place about 1/3 cup flour in a shallow bowl and dredge both sides of shrimp to get a light coating.

Heat around 1/4 cup olive oil in a pan until hot.  Cook shrimp around 2-3 minutes per side until crispy.  Place cooked shrimp on a clean plate with paper towel to drain.

Assemble the po boys with shrimp, coleslaw, tomatoes, and mustard (or anything else you would like).  Serve right away while shrimp are still warm!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Mediterrean Roasted Veggie Sandwhiches on Foccacia Bread

I saw a similar sandwich to this one on the menu at Panera the other day and thought it would be yummy to recreate at home one night.  Their sandwich was grilled, but we unfortunately have had a bit of rain in Indy lately so mine ended up in the oven.  You could go either way, grill or roast the veggies.  I also intended on including eggplant but forgot to pick it up at the grocery, so make sure you switch up the veggies based on what sounds good to you.  I was trying to decide what type of bread I wanted to make these sandwiches on and my mind went straight to foccacia, so I decided to try making this bread again!  Get some really good feta cheese and you're set!

my veggies prior to roasting with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and minced garlic

Mediterranean Roasted Veggie Sandwiches on Foccacia Bread
inspired by Panera
serves 3-4

Foccacia bread (recipe follows)
1 zucchini
1 red bell pepper
2 portobello mushroom caps
1 red onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
olive oil
salt & pepper
fresh spinach (or other lettuce greens)
1 tomato, sliced
Feta cheese

Preheat oven to 400.  Slice zucchini, red pepper, mushrooms, and onion and place on a baking sheet with minced garlic.  Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt & pepper.  Toss to combine.  Roast veggies for about 15-20 minutes until tender.

Slice foccacia in half for sandwich if its thick.  Layer sandwich with roasted veggies, feta, slice of tomato, and spinach.  Serve warm!

Rosemary & Sea Salt Foccacia
adapted slightly from the Pioneer Woman

1-½ teaspoon Active Dry Yeast
1-½ cup Warm Water
4 cups All-purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
⅓ cups Olive Oil
Olive Oil, For Drizzling 
Sea Salt, For Sprinkling
Rosemary, For Sprinkling
Sprinkle yeast over 1 1/2 cups warm (not lukewarm) water. Let stand for a few minutes.
In a mixer, combine flour and salt. With the mixer running on low speed (with paddle attachment), drizzle in olive oil until combined with flour. Next, pour in yeast/water mixture and mix until just combined, and the dough comes together in a sticky mass.

Warm a non-metal mixing bowl in the microwave until warm. Coat it with a light drizzle of olive oil, and form the dough into a ball. Toss to coat dough in olive oil, then cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and set it aside for 1 to 2 hours, or store in the fridge until you need it.

Remove dough from bowl and place on a lightly floured surface.  Divide dough in half and roll each half into a large, thin oval/rectangle (not too thin, 1/2 inch at the thinnest). Place on separate sheet pans (or cookie sheets) drizzled with olive oil. Drizzle more olive oil on top of the ovals, then cover each one with plastic wrap. Put in a draft-free/warm place for one hour.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Remove the plastic wrap (dough will be puffy) and use your fingertips to press dimples all over the surface of the dough. Drizzle surface with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt & rosemary. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until focaccia is golden brown.  (Note:  I made mine too thin and it was done in about 20 minutes...start checking it at 20 just in case).  Cut into pieces with a pizza wheel or sharp knife.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Salmon Salad w/ Boursin Cheese, Roasted Tomatoes & Artichokes

So here is another one of those meals that I saw on the menu somewhere and decided to re-create it at home!  We had a work lunch at Mesh restaurant downtown which was very good, and while I didn't order this salad I of course kept it in the back of my mind along with another couple that I'll get around to making someday.  The salad was great and I'm sure it was majorly due to the fantastic boursin cheese.  The only change I made was to make a simple red wine vinaigrette instead of the creamy cucumber dressing listed on the menu paired with this salad.  I thought the vinaigrette went perfect.

Salmon Salad w/ Boursin Cheese, Roasted Tomatoes & Artichokes
inspired by Mesh on Mass Ave.
serves 2

Mixed greens
2 salmon fillets
boursin cheese
1/2 - 3/4 cup cherry tomatoes
1/2 can artichoke hearts
Red wine vinaigrette (recipe follows)

Place salmon in a baking pan and surround with tomatoes & artichokes.  Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes until salmon flakes easily with a fork.  (Optional: cut up artichokes into bite size pieces, I did not do this but wished I had while we were eating).  Top mixed greens with salmon, crumbled boursin cheese, tomatoes, artichokes, and pistachios.  Drizzle with vinaigrette and serve!

Red Wine Vinaigrette
via Giada

1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1.5 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoons honey
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup olive oil

Mix the ingredients well, taste & season if needed.