Monday, January 31, 2011

Shrimp Scampi

Looking for a really fast, easy, delicious, and fancy meal?  Pull out your bag of pre-cooked shrimp and get ready for a tangy feast! 

2 pounds shrimp
8 tablespoons butter
4 large cloves garlic
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons dried parsley
1 tablespoon italian seasoning
2 teaspoons flour
Juice of 1/2 of a lemon (I always use bottled lemon juice)
1 pound linguine (or your favorite pasta of choice)
Salt and pepper to taste


1. Cook linguine according to package directions (al dente).

2. Rinse, peel, and de-vein the shrimp in cold water. Dry on paper towels.  (If you're using the bagged, de-veined shrimp, just take off the tails)

3. In a separate pan, sauté garlic in butter and oil for 1 minute, 

DO NOT let the garlic turn brown.

5. Add the parsley, italian seasoning, and shrimp. 

6. Raise heat to medium-high and cook for 3 to 5 minutes stirring frequently. 

7. Do not overcook. Season with salt and pepper. 

8. Add flour to slightly thicken the garlic butter. 

9. Add the lemon juice during the last minute of cooking. 

10. Remove from the heat. Serve immediately over pasta. Serves 4 to 6.

Chicken Parmesan

I was surprised at how easy chicken parmesan is.  And how delicious.  So moist and flavorful!  Enjoy! 

Cooking spray
2 egg whites
1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, pounded to 1/2 in. thickness
1 1/3 c. Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1 jar marinara or spaghetti sauce (about 3 1/2 cups)
3/4 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
2 Tbl. shredded parmesan
Spaghetti noodles

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Spray a glass baking dish liberally with cooking spray.  In a bowl, whisk the egg whites and milk together.  in another bowl, stir together the flour, salt, and pepper.  Dip each piece of chicken, one piece at a time, in flour, then egg, then bread crumbs.  (HINT: If you don't have a meat tenderizer to flatten the meat, do what I did all through college:  use a can!  You can either clean the outside of an unopened can or put the can in a plastic bag to keep it clean and then pound away on the chicken.  It's not quite as even and pretty, but it does the job! ) 
2.  Place breaded chicken in prepared glass baking dish.  Then, spray the top side of the breasts with cooking spray.  Bake chicken until cooked through and crumbs are browned, about 15 minutes.  Top with sauce, mozzarella and Parmesan and return to oven for an additional 10 minutes, until cheese is bubbling.  Serve over spaghetti noodles. 

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Mexican Turkey Burgers

     I have really become a believer in cooking with ground turkey.  It's healthier than beef and typically quite a bit cheaper.  Don't get me wrong, I don't substitute it yet (I still love my red meat!)  but I do take note of the recipes that use ground turkey.  Anyway, this seemed like a fun way to combine some of my favorite foods:  hamburgers and mexican food.  Enjoy! 

1 Tbl olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 medium green pepper, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 c. salsa
1/2 (15.25 oz) can corn
1 lb. ground turkey
1 (1.25 oz) packaged taco seasoning mix
1/3 c. dry bread crumbs
6 flour tortillas
6 Tbl sour cream
2 c. shredded lettuce

1.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Coat a medium baking dish with cooking spray.  
2.  Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat and saute the onion, green pepper and garlic 5 minutes.  (I never actually chop up cloves of garlic, I buy a big jar of minced garlic and keep it in the refrigerator.  So much easier and you still get the yummy fresh garlic taste!) Remove from heat, and cool slightly. 
3.  In a small bowl, mix the salsa and the corn.  In a large bowl, mix the onion mixture with the turkey, taco seasoning, and 2 Tbl of the salsa mixture.  Divide into 6 patties, and press into the breadcrumbs to lightly coat on all sides.  Arrange the coated patties in the prepared baking dish.  
4.  Bake the patties 10 minutes in the preheated oven.  Turn patties and spread with the remaining salsa mixture.  Continue baking 10 minutes, to an internal temp. of 165 degrees. 
5.  Warm the tortillas in the microwave, about 30 seconds on High.  Wrap the cooked turkey patties in the warmed tortillas with sour cream and lettuce.  

Kind of long directions, but REALLY simple to make.  Here's a picture of what they should look like coming out of the oven: 

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Easy Orange Rolls

      Not every new dish is for dinner.  I mix it up occasionally with breakfast or lunch too.  This day, I was in the mood for a tasty but quick homemade breakfast.  Orange rolls sounded delicious.  I searched and various other sites looking for the perfect recipe.  Most involved making your own rolls.  That was much too complicated for my weekday morning and desire to put a quick breakfast on the table before my husband left for work.  Enter this recipe and a tube of refrigerated biscuits.  

2/3 c. sugar
1/3 c. butter or margarine
2 Tbl and 2 tsp. orange juice
1 Tbl and 1 tsp. grated orange peel (fresh or from the spice section)
1 can of refrigerated biscuits

1.  In a saucepan, combine sugar, butter, orange juice and peel. Heat until sugar is dissolved and butter is melted. 2.  Pour into two 8 in. circular cake pans.  Arrange 4 biscuits in each and bake at 350 degrees according to package directions or until cooked through and golden brown (it may take a bit longer than the directions state, just keep an eye on them).  
3.  Remove from oven and immediately turn upside down onto a serving platter.  Serve warm.  

First of all, sorry for the weird measurements ( I know 2 Tbl and 2 tsp. is somewhat annoying).  But, the original recipe is found here: and I had to scale it down from 12 servings to 4.  (Or 2 in our case... I snacked on those things all day long until suddenly they were gone!) Second, if you look at the original recipe, you'll notice some differences.  I decided that the sauce should be doubled based on my experience of not being satisfied with enough gooey orange goodness.  So be aware that the measurements differ between my recipe and the original.  

All in all, these seriously took all of maybe 3 minutes to prepare and were quite delicious.  Go on and try it! 

Friday, January 14, 2011

Deviled Chicken and Wild Rice

Okay, this chicken is to die for.  Seriously.  I LOVED it.  So flavorful and crunchy!

Deviled Chicken Ingredients (2 servings):
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 (16 ounce) package herb-seasoned dry bread stuffing mix

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Melt butter/margarine and mix in a small bowl with mayonnaise and mustard. Pour mixture into a shallow bowl or plate.
  3. Season chicken with salt and pepper to taste. Roll seasoned chicken breasts in mayonnaise mixture, then dip in mixed herbs and place in a lightly greased baking dish. Cover with tinfoil and bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes.  Remove tinfoil and bake 30 more minutes.  (keep an eye on your chicken so you don't over bake it, ovens vary quite a bit)

White and Wild Rice Pilaf

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 1 large carrots, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1-3/4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup uncooked wild rice
  • 1/2 cup uncooked regular long-grain white rice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley (or dried parsley to taste)
  • Season with salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning to taste


Okay, here are the original directions: 

  1. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, carrots, celery and garlic and cook until tender. Stir in broth and wild rice. Heat to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat 25 minutes.
  2. Stir in white rice. Cover and cook over low heat 20 minutes or until rice is done. Stir in parsley.

However, I thought that sounded more complicated than it needed to be, so I just combined all the ingredients at once and made it like regular rice:  I stirred in the olive oil, vegetables, rice, and broth and then put the heat on high.  Once it came to a boil, I covered the pot and reduced heat to low, letting it simmer for 20-25 minutes.  In this way, the vegetables steam and are cooked through at the same time the rice cooks.  After the 20 minutes or so, I added the seasonings to taste.  It was a wonderful side to the chicken! 

Slow Cooker Chicken Stroganoff

     Alright, the Holidays ran away with me and now it's time to get back to updating on my latest cooking exploits!  I apologize for my absence.  But hey, we went out of town for 2 weeks, announced that we're expecting our first child, and I've been trying to get back into the swing of things since returning from our travels!  Other than being a walking zombie from the immense fatigue I've experienced the last 12 weeks, I have still been cooking some blog-worthy meals!  Here's a really quick easy one for you!
     This chicken stroganoff recipe is perfect for Sunday dinner.  I put it in the slow cooker before church and then had a low-stress dinner when we got home!

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cubed
1/8 c. margarine
1 (.7 ounce) packaged dry Italian-style salad dressing mix
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
2 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup
Egg noodles 

1.  Put chicken, margarine and dressing mix in slow cooker; mix together and cook on low for 5 to 6 hours
2. Add cream cheese and soup, mix together and cook on high for another 1/2 hour or until heated through and warm. 
3.  Serve over egg noodles.  (I used whole wheat noodles... Yummy!) 

It's that easy.  The original recipe calls for one can of cream of chicken soup but my husband isn't a huge fan of cream cheese so I diluted it a bit.  He LOVED it.  And I thought there was still plenty of cream cheese taste.  So take your pick, 1 or 2 cans of soup.  This feeds about 5-6 people.