Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Cabbage Rolls

This is a recipe I tried in the very beginning of this year long challenge, found on allrecipes.com.  At the time I was working full time and so I utilized the slow cooker often!  This is good for variety but I personally wouldn't serve it regularly.  But, try it out and let me know what you think! 

  • 12 leaves cabbage
  • 1 cup cooked white rice
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • 1 pound extra-lean ground beef
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Boil cabbage leaves 2 minutes; drain.
  2. In large bowl, combine 1 cup cooked rice, egg, milk, onion, ground beef, salt, and pepper. Place about 1/4 cup of meat mixture in center of each cabbage leaf, and roll up, tucking in ends. Place rolls in slow cooker.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together tomato sauce, brown sugar, lemon juice, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over cabbage rolls.
  4. Cover, and cook on Low 8 hours.

Italian Chicken and Chickpeas

This is a fun way to eat garbanzo beans.  However, beware, this dish is SPICY!  Next time I make it I will cut down the cayenne pepper and red pepper flakes.  I'm leaving the measurements as they are in the original recipe though so you can chance it if you dare!  I served this up over couscous and it went marvelous together.  My husband kept commenting on how great of an idea it was to serve this with couscous so I highly recommend you do the same!  

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 (15 ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season the chicken with the rosemary on both sides; cook the chicken in the hot oil until browned evenly, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside.
  2. Pour 1 tablespoon olive oil into the skillet. Add the onion and green pepper and cook until soft.  Stir in the garlic until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning, cayenne pepper, sugar, bay leaf, and red pepper flakes to the skillet; stir. Return the chicken to the skillet; cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until the chicken is no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear, 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. Stir the garbanzo beans into the skillet; continue cooking until the beans are heated, 2 to 3 minutes more.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Lemon Poppy Seed Pancakes

     Finally another breakfast recipe!  These pancakes are delicioso.  They have just the right amount of lemon flavor and if you love lemon poppy seed muffins (I do!) then you will love these! 

INGREDIENTS  (4 servings)
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon poppy seeds
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • cooking spray


  1. Stir the milk, vinegar, and lemon juice together in a bowl; let stand 10 minutes to curdle. Whisk in egg, butter, and vanilla extract.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, poppy seeds, and lemon zest until well combined. Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture and whisk a few times until the batter is mostly free of lumps.
  3. Heat a skillet over medium heat and spray with cooking spray. Pour 1/4 cup of batter per pancake into the skillet and cook until bubbles appear on the surface, about 2 minutes. Flip the pancakes over with a spatula and brown the other side, about 2 more minutes.  (I think I probably poured about 1/2 c. of batter per pancake - we like our pancakes bigger in this house) 

Shrimp and Mushroom Linguine

     I don't think I could ever tire of pasta and shrimp.  They just go so well together!  The mushrooms in this taste amazing and the red pepper was my own addition to the original recipe but I think it really added the extra flavor that the dish needed (not to mention color) so I wouldn't skip out on it! 

  • 1 (8 ounce) package linguini pasta
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/3 c. white cooking wine
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (4 ounce) package cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/3 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 pound cooked shrimp
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add linguini, and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Drain.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and red pepper; cook and stir until tender. Transfer to a plate. 
  3. In the same pan, melt 1/2 cup butter with the minced garlic. Stir in the cream cheese, breaking it up with a spoon as it melts. Stir in the parsley, basil, and wine. Simmer for 5 minutes. Mix in boiling water until sauce is smooth. Stir in cooked shrimp and mushroom mixture, and heat through.  Add salt and pepper to taste. 
  4. Toss linguini with shrimp sauce, and serve.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Black Bean Burritos

     Black bean burritos have never tasted so good!  This one is a keeper for sure.  Even better - no baking, only dirties one pan, and puts dinner on the table fast.  My husband and I REALLY enjoyed these.  Perfect for a meatless Monday and full of protein and fiber.  

  • 4 (10 inch) flour tortillas
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped (or yellow, or orange)
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can Rotel Tomatoes with green chilies - Mild
  • 2 teaspoons minced jalapeno peppers (leave out the seeds if you want to minimize the heat!)
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 8 oz. pepper jack cheese


  1. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Place onion, bell pepper, garlic and jalapenos in skillet, cook for 2 minutes stirring occasionally. Pour beans and Rotel tomatoes into skillet, cook 2 minutes, stirring.  
  2. Add cumin and chili powder. 
  3. Cut cream cheese into cubes and add to skillet with salt. Cook for 4 minutes stirring occasionally. Stir cilantro into mixture.
  4. While the mixture is cooking, heat up your tortillas either on the stove or microwave so that you can fold them without them breaking. 
  5. Spoon the mixture down the middle of your tortillas and top with shredded pepper jack cheese (please please please use pepper jack - it adds the extra kick and flavor that makes this burrito so good!).  Add avocados if desired - my husband loved the avocados, I preferred it without

That's it!  Easy, right?  Oh- and the spinach tortillas rock this burrito.  Adds color and flavor.  Yum! 

Beef Noodle Soup

Ready for another quick and simple soup recipe? (Courtesy of allrecipes.com)  This one is chalked full of flavor from beef bouillon and is oh so delicious.  Please excuse the picture quality, sometimes my camera has lighting issues when it comes to food.  Anyway, serve this soup up with grilled cheese sandwiches for a change of pace and you've got yourself a hearty meal! 

  • 1 pound cubed beef stew meat
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup beef bouillon granules
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 pinch ground black pepper
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 5 3/4 cups water
  • 3/4 of 1 (16 oz) bag of egg noodles


  1. In a medium saucepan, bring water to boil and cook egg noodles according to package directions.  NOTE:  I'm not sure of the exact amount of egg noodles I poured in, but I just looked at the bag and estimated that I used 3/4 of the 16 oz. bag.  
  2. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan over medium high heat, saute the stew meat, onion and celery for 5 minutes, or until meat is browned on all sides.
  3. Stir in the bouillon, parsley, ground black pepper, carrots, and water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low.  Add the cooked egg noodles and and simmer for 10-15 minutes.