The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza day 334-347 (week 49 & 50)

December 16, 2012 at 8:38 pm (Food, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!!

I can’t believe I’m on week 50 already!!  And I’m sorry I got sidetracked last week and didn’t post, but I hope you will forgive me.

I’ve been so busy, working a little OT, getting presents made, shipping out of state presents, finishing up William’s makeshift Advent calendar.  I just ran out of weekend last weekend!  This weekend, I skipped doing my nails so I would have time to catch up here, make a couple of projects I had wanted to try, finish wrapping the presents sitting around here in bags, clean up a little, you know, all those things that get away from you this time of year!

I’m really looking forward to a four day weekend next weekend!!  Going to bake some cookies, get everything together for Christmas dinner, and pick up the last couple of things on my list for the boys, and maybe a couple of stocking stuffers.  Want to try a new roll recipe I found, too, hopefully we’ll have nice fresh sweet yeast rolls to go with Christmas dinner!!

And I’ve been so turned around, I can’t honestly say I can give you a day by day account of what I made, but I do have a couple recipes to share, a new twist on one I’ve made before, and hopefully you will find something you like here!!

So, on to the food….

Garlic Pork with Rice and Peas

4 boneless pork chops

1 cup frozen peas

1 container garlic flavor Philadelphia cooking cream

Rice made in your rice cooker or stovetop

Trim the little bit of fat from the edge of the pork chops, then cut the chops into small bite sized pieces.

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Put about 2 Tbsp olive oil in a frying pan, heat to medium, add in pork and cook until no longer pink.  Add in peas, cover and steam about 5 minutes.  Add in cooking cream, stirring until melted well.  You can add a little milk if needed to thin it out if you want.  Add in the cooked rice, stir until mixed well, and serve!

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Glazed Carrots

1 Cup frozen carrots

2 Tbsp brown sugar

1 Tbsp butter

Put everything in a microwavable dish, cover, microwave 5 minutes, mix and serve!

Coconut Curry Chicken

3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

2 cans coconut milk

1 box Golden curry mix

Put everything in the crock pot, DO NOT add any water, cover and cook on LOW 8-10 hours.  Remove chicken from the pot, shred, stir sauce in pot, add back in chicken, serve over Chicken Flavored Rice.

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Chicken Flavored Rice

I don’t know about your rice cooker, but here’s how mine works…

Fill to “3” line with water, add in 3 scoops rice and 1 packet of chicken flavoring (I used Knorr’s chicken stock this time), set to COOK and serve when it’s done!

Spaghetti and Meatballs

I don’t think I really need to go into this one…  frozen meatballs, boxed spaghetti, jarred sauce….

Pot Roast

1 3-4 pound pot roast

1 box beef stock

1 packet beef Flavor Boost

1 packet French Onion soup mix

Put everything in the crock pot, set to LOW, cook 8-10 hours, it will literally fall apart, and because you didn’t add any plain water, it won’t be all dried out!!

Home Made Beef and Rice Burritos

1 pound ground beef

2 cups water

1/2 cup taco seasoning

2 cups leftover rice

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 can enchilada sauce

2 cups shredded cheese

8 tortillas

Put ground beef, water and taco seasoning in the crock pot in the morning.  Set on LOW and cook 8-10 hours.  When you get home from work, chop up the beef in the pot, stir in the rice and beans, and add a little more taco seasoning if you need to.  Mine needed just a couple tablespoons more!

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Put the tortillas one at a time on a plate, sprinkle with a few tablespoons shredded cheese, two large spoonfuls (maybe 1/2 cup??) of the meat, rice and bean mixture, fold in sides and roll into a burrito.

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Place in a wide shallow baking pan.  Repeat with all tortillas, you might have a little filling left, but not much.  Pour enchilada sauce over burritos, sprinkle with remaining cheese, and bake at 350 degrees about 30 minutes, or until cheese is melted.  Serve with a little sour cream, or ranch dressing.

Bacon Cheeseburger Muffins

1 pound bacon

1 pound ground beef

2 cans biscuits

1 cup shredded cheese

Cut bacon into small pieces, cook until crisp, remove to paper towel lined plate.  Set aside.

Cook beef until no longer pink, crumbling as you cook.

Press biscuits as flat as you can get them, keeping them round.  Spray muffin pan with cooking spray, put one biscuit in each muffin cup.  Spoon in little shredded cheese, some bacon, some beef, top with a little more cheese.  Repeat until you run out of muffins and toppings.  Bake at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes, or more if needed, to get a nice golden brown edge on the muffins.  Serve with dipping sauces of your choice!

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So that’s all I can remember that I cooked, hope you found something you enjoyed!!

Until next time, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza day 320-326 (week 47)

November 25, 2012 at 10:29 pm (Food, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!  Hope you all had a wonderful holiday week!  A little odd for us…

William was off school all week, so he was home, and he was BORED, but he was good.  He read every day, practiced his guitar, did his chores, and stayed out of trouble.

It was a short week for Mike and I, because of the holiday, doctor’s appointments, and a little time off.  I took off Friday so I could go Black Friday shopping, ended up doing more online shopping than in-person shopping, but it was nice to not have to worry about work.  Seems I went a little overboard though, didn’t leave a whole lot of cash until next payday!  Good news is I only have two more people to shop for, and I have at least one idea for one of them, something I can get any time between now and Christmas!  And I have two things to make, gotta get busy, but then I am DONE!!

James decided to start his holiday early, so we haven’t actually seen him since Tuesday, hope he had a good holiday!

We were supposed to go to Mom’s for Thanksgiving dinner, but Mike and William both started coming down with something, and we didn’t want to expose my folks to it, so Wednesday night we made the mad dash through Walmart getting all the stuff we didn’t have on hand to make dinner Thursday!

Anyway, on to the food….

Monday

Pork chops

Simply pan fried with a little butter, nothing fancy.

Steamed veggies, broccoli and peas, the usual.

Rolls, the canned kind.

Mike ended up cooking for me, because I worked a little late to help with a project.

Tuesday

Chicken and Black Bean Homemade Burritos

3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 cup taco seasoning mix

1 quart water

Tortillas

Shredded cheese

Put the chicken, black beans, taco seasoning and water into the crock pot in the morning, let it cook all day on LOW.

Remove chicken from pot, shred.  Remove black beans from pot.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Lay out tortillas.  Sprinkle with shredded cheese, spoon in a little shredded chicken and some black beans, roll into burritos, place in a large baking pan.  Repeat until you use up all the chicken and beans, or run out of room in your pan, whichever comes first.  Top with a little more shredded cheese.  Bake about 15 minutes or until cheese is melted.  Serve with a side of ranch or sour cream or guacamole, whatever you like!  Salsa works well, too.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

1 Bag frozen Brussels sprouts (I used frozen this time because I wasn’t sure when I would make these, they were a little softer than fresh, but tasted OK)

4 slices bacon

1/2 C dried cherries

1/4 C chopped or sliced nuts of your choice (I prefer pecans, but I had almonds on hand)

Remove stems from sprouts, and cut into quarters.

Cut bacon into small pieces and cook until crispy.  Remove from pan, but don’t pour off grease.  Add cut sprouts to pan, saute lightly until slightly browned and heated through.  Toss bacon, cherries and nuts into pan, mix well, heat another minute or two.

Pour everything into a baking dish of your choice, bake at 350 degrees 45-55 minutes, or until well browned and very soft.  Serve!

Wednesday

Jet’s Pizza

Thursday

Thanksgiving Dinner

Turkey – rubbed with butter, sprinkled with salt, pepper and poultry seasoning, DO NOT TRUSS or stuff, roast at 350 degrees per package directions – my 10 pound turkey said it needed to cook 2 hours, I didn’t believe it, so I cook it 3, it was dry, but tasty!

Potatoes – 6 large baking potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks, boiled about 45 minutes or until very soft.  Drain, add in 1 stick butter, maybe 1/2 C milk, more if you like them creamier, mix with hand blender until smooth and creamy!

Sweet potatoes

1 can yams

1/2 C brown sugar

1/2 stick butter cut into pieces

Pour yams WITH JUICE into a casserole dish.  Sprinkle over brown sugar, place pats of butter around pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until heated through and bubbly.

Rolls

Store bought frozen rolls, sorry!

Gravy

Turkey drippings, gravy packet from the turkey, plus some poultry gravy mix.

Broccoli

Green beans

Peas

Stuffing

Boxed, sorry again, but remember, I didn’t PLAN on cooking at all!!

Cranberry sauce

Friday

Subway

Saturday

Mini Pizzas – frozen, but good!

Cheese Sticks – frozen

Cheese bites – frozen

Sunday

Pot Roast with Potatoes

1 roast of your choice, I went for a tip roast this time, I like them

1/4 cup onion flakes

3 packets beef flavor Flavor Boost

1 quart water

4 large potatoes, peeled and cut into bite sized pieces

Put everything in the crock pot, set on low for 6-8 hours, remove and serve!

Steamed veggies

The usual, broccoli and peas with butter

Gravy

Strained the juices from the pot, mixed in some brown gravy mix, YUM!

And of course, I did my nails over the weekend, so here’s this week’s design…

Until next time, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 176 & 177

June 28, 2012 at 8:06 pm (Food) (, , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!

It’s been a sort of slow week around here, but that’s OK, I think we need a week like this from time to time.

William is well settled in to his summer routine, gotta go get him those books so he can get busy reading!

James is working, Mike just got home a little while ago, I had a quiet day at work.

Anyway, last night we sort of had a free-for-all dinner.  I made a couple of quick and easy baked potatoes for Mike and I, William had a burrito, James went to a card game, so no idea what he ate before he left.  Nothing special…

Tonight though, I made a good meal, that no one wanted to eat!  I’ll give you the recipe anyway…

Pot Roast and Potatoes

1 chuck roast, you pick the size and how much fat you like on it – I like it a little leaner

3-4 medium potatoes, washed and cut into bite sized pieces

1 packet dry French onion soup mix

2 quarts water (or whatever it takes to fill your crock pot)

Yes, we’re heading for the crock pot again!  I just love that thing.

Put your roast and cut up potatoes in the pot.  Mix the water and onion soup mix in a pitcher, pour over the meat and potatoes.  Cook on LOW 8-10 hours or HIGH 4-5 hours.

Remove the roast and potatoes to a serving tray.  Strain some of the juices from the pot, I did about 4 cups, and add in some brown gravy mix.  Stir well, simmer until thickened, and serve with the meat and potatoes!

Yummy meal, and leftovers too!

Anyway, that’s it for now.  Until tomorrow, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 42

February 12, 2012 at 11:53 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello my friends, and welcome back!!  So glad you’ve decided to join me again…

Tonight, I had planned another pot roast, not sure what was going to be “different” about it, but I have a couple of cookbooks…  HOWEVER, I mentioned pot roast, and William says “again?!”  Apparently, we’ve been having a lot of roasts lately, but I’ve been getting really good deals on them, and they are SO easy!

Anyway, I decided, maybe we were having too many roasts, and I needed to do something different.  So, I trimmed the larger portions of fat from the sides of the roast, there weren’t really many since I bought an eye round roast, but there was just a little.  Then I cut it into bite sized pieces, and they turned into:

Pot Roast Stew

2 pound eye round roast, trimmed of fat, cut into bite sized pieces (approx 1/2″)

1 pound small red potatoes, cut into similarly sized pieces as the meat

3 large carrots, peeled and cut into same sized pieces as meat

2 cups frozen green beans, STILL FROZEN, cut or broken into roughly 1″ pieces

1 cup frozen peas, STILL FROZEN

1 carton beef broth

1 Tbsp each rosemary and thyme (I put mine into a tea/spice ball so I don’t hear any complaints from the peanut gallery, mainly William)

1 Tbsp each salt and pepper

2 Tbsp soy sauce

1 cup cold water mixed with about 1/2 cup flour

Brown beef in a few Tbsps of oil in a large stock pot.  Add in beef broth, then veggies, salt and pepper.  Place spice ball with rosemary and thyme into broth, cover and simmer over medium to medium-low heat for about 1 hour, or until potatoes and carrots are tender.  Stir in soy sauce.  Stir in flour mixture, and serve!

Even the picky one liked this, and there are just about 3 servings left over for lunches.

Until tomorrow friends, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 30

February 1, 2012 at 1:24 am (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

WOW!  Sort of a milestone for me, 30 days straight!  WOO HOO!

Welcome back!  Hope you’re still enjoying my ramblings and recipes.  Hey, that’s a good book title, “Ramblings and Recipes”!  I’ll have to remember that…

Tonight, we went sort of old school, and I have to say, I will NEVER buy another “pot roast” from Walmart or Sam’s!  I don’t think I’ve ever had a tougher piece of meat in my life.  I even had trouble cutting it with a steak knife, and that after 4 hours in the crock pot, which usually turns any piece of meat into wonderful tender yummyness.  Not this time!

ANYWAY, here was the menu:

Pot Roast (go ahead and splurge on a decent piece of meat, Winn Dixie usually has good stuff, and they put it on sale every few weeks!)

3-4 pound pot roast with SOME marbling, but not TOO MUCH fat

1 medium onion, chopped into roughly 8 wedges (or you can cheat like I did and add about a cup of dried onion flakes!)

1 Tbsp rosemary leaves (I put my in a tea ball so I wouldn’t have to fish them all out again before making gravy)

Place roast in crock pot, add onion and tea ball with rosemary leaves inside, cover with water or beef broth (I prefer broth, but I didn’t have any tonight…  😦

Cook on LOW 8 hours, or until extremely tender and falling apart.

Remove from pot, and let rest while you use the juices from the pot to make gravy.  Then slice and serve!

Gravy

Strain juices from crock pot (above!), mix with “brown gravy” mix using measurements from the package. (yeah, I know, it’s cheating!) Bring to a boil, simmer 1 minute or until nice and thick.  Serve!

Cheese Toast (James made this tonight)

Slice fresh bread loaf, French or Italian breads work well.  Slice enough so everyone gets two slices.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet.  Spray ONE SIDE ONLY with butter flavor cooking spray.  Cook, sprayed side up, at 400 degrees for 5 minutes.  Remove from oven, turn bread over, sprinkle with shredded cheese of your choice (ours tonight was a blend of mozzarella, cheddar and provolone), cook another 5 minutes at 400 degrees, or until cheese is fully melted and edges of bread are toasty.  Serve.

We also had canned (GASP!) veggies, just because I have a pantry full of them to get rid of, and I ate the last of the leftover Brussels Sprouts from a couple of nights ago, which I have to say taste even better having sat in the fridge mixing it up for a couple of days, they were AWESOME, some plain cooked egg noodles (really good with gravy over them) plus we had a nice fresh salad.

So, to wrap it up, HORRIBLE roast, GREAT bread, AWESOME Brussels Sprouts (who ever thought those words would ever go together in the same sentence, right?!) and OK everything else.  Definitely a filling meal, and everyone got SOMETHING they liked.

Tomorrow, curried chicken and home made Mac N Cheese, James style.

Until then, eat well, love well, live well!!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 22

January 24, 2012 at 3:29 am (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello friends, welcome back!!

today, I had to go for something completely different, foods even I have never tried, and it was work!  I spent an hour this morning chopping up veggies, and chipped my FAVORITE ceramic knife (dang!!), but in the end, it was SO worth it!  Everyone got something they liked, everyone tried something new, and I got another entry for this journal…

Roasted Root Veggies

1-2 pound butternut squash, cleaned, peeled, cut into 1″ cubes (I ended up getting a much larger one and only used half)

4-5 medium turnips, cleaned, ends trimmed, cut into 1″ cubes (I purchased a bag that had 5 small to medium ones, it was perfect)

4-5 parsnips, peeled, ends trimmed, cut into 1/2″ slices (I purchased a bag that sort of looked like a small bag of carrots and used them all)

3 medium baking potatoes, cleaned, cut into 1″ cubes (or small red potatoes cut in half)

1 lb baby carrots, washed

1/2 medium red onion, cut into 1/2″ wedges

2 Tbsp olive oil

1/2 tsp each salt and pepper

2 tsp minced garlic

Place all ingredients into a large crock pot, mix well to coat all pieces, cover and cook on low 9-10 hours, or high 4-5 hours.  Serve immediately!

Oven Roasted Pot Roast (I usually do roasts in the crock pot, so I had to look this one up!)

3-4 pound pot roast of your choice (I used one actually called a “pot roast” on the package, but I would think an eye round or some other kind of roast would work as well)

4 Tbsp dried onion flakes

1 box Great Value beef broth

1 Tsp each salt and pepper

Place all ingredients in an oven roasting pan, cover, cook at 325 degrees for 2 hours.  Remove roast from pan, and allow to rest while you make gravy!  Strain juices into sauce pan, add flour or gravy mix to make a nice thick gravy.  Slice roast and serve!

So everyone got something they liked, and everyone tried something new, and it was a good meal!

Until tomorrow, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 16

January 17, 2012 at 11:57 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , )

Welcome back food buddies!!

Today, we had BBQ beef sandwiches for dinner, they were YUMMY!!!  We also had some leftover potatoes and carrots from last night’s dinner, and a nice fresh salad with Italian dressing.  Still have a couple of those mini banana breads left from last night, but they won’t make it until tomorrow.

I got the idea for the BBQ beef from a friend, think I should give her credit (Candy Allman!).  Not sure exactly what she puts in hers, how long she cooks it or anything like that, but she made some over the weekend, and I said “I can do that!”  So, here’s my take on BBQ beef…

BBQ Beef

1 pot roast of your choice (I used an eye round roast for this**), 2-3 pounds

1-2 boxes beef broth

2 Tbsp garlic powder

1 1/2 – 2 cups BBQ sauce

Put the roast, beef broth and garlic powder in a slow cooker, cook on low 7-8 hours, or high 3-4 hours, or until the meat pulls apart easily with a fork.  Remove the roast from the pot, remove any remaining fat if desired, cut into thick slices, and shred with two forks, literally pull the meat apart.  Put the shredded beef into a large sauce pan, add 1 1/2 – 2 cups BBQ sauce of your choice, I used Great Value brand hickory flavored BBQ sauce.  Heat over medium low for about 15-20 minutes, or until hot.  Serve with sliced buns (I used fresh hard rolls), cole slaw if you want it (I wish I had some tonight, I love cole slaw on BBQ!), and whatever side dishes you want.  This would make a good picnic food, so other picnic foods would probably go well with it, like baked beans, fresh fruit, fruit salad, just whatever you want!  Also makes really good leftovers…

**So I have to tell you, I picked this roast because it doesn’t have a lot of excess fat, and once it’s cooked, it’s easy to see the fat and remove it.  Standing joke in my family, I do “surgery” on steaks before I eat them, have to remove anything that even remotely resembles fat, before I will eat it.  So of course, I couldn’t use a regular pot roast for this, or I would have been standing at that stove for hours removing all the fat, and there wouldn’t have been any BBQ for dinner because I would have gotten frustrated and threw the whole thing out!!

Anywho…  BBQ beef sandwiches are awesome!!  Dinner was a hit, and no roasts ended up in the trash, so it was a good meal.

Not sure what’s on the menu tomorrow just yet, thinking maybe cheese souffle…

Until then, eat well, love well, live well!!

 

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