Monday, January 30, 2012

Black Bean & Chicken Quesadilla


  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 1 (15.5 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (10 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup salsa
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 c. of chopped chicken
  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 8 (8 inch) flour tortillas
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded Mild Cheddar Cheese.

  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Stir in onion, and cook until softened, about 2 minutes.
  3. Stir in beans and corn, then add sugar, salsa, and pepper flakes; mix well. Cook until heated through, about 3 minutes.
  4. Melt 2 teaspoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
  5. Place a tortilla in the skillet, sprinkle evenly with cheese, then top with some of the bean mixture.
  6. Place another tortilla on top, cook until golden, then flip and cook on the other side.
  7. Melt more butter as needed, and repeat with remaining tortillas and filling.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Hubby Original Omelet

So my husband isn't a huge cook but there are a few things that he can do pretty dang well. His omelets are pretty sensational. We got back from church on Sunday and he was so excited to make an omelet. Here is his version of the best omelet.

3 whole eggs
1 egg white
2 T. milk
Handful of spinach
1 T. green onion, chopped
2 slices of honey ham
1/2 c. grated cheddar cheese
Pinch of salt
  1. In mixing bowl whisk eggs together.
  2. Add the milk, spinach, green onions, ham and salt.
  3. Grease large skillet and wait until heated.
  4. Poor mixture into skillet and cook for about 3 min.
  5. And then do this...

   6. Flip the omelet over (his face is just priceless isn't it??)
   7. Place cheese on one half of the omelet and then fold the omelet in half.

This is my hubby's original. Hope you like it! He even plated his own plate--he added the spinach leaf for some color! (and that bread is homemade from my recipe last week!)


Friday, January 27, 2012

Grapefruit Heaven

Oh my goodness. Seriously. I love grapefruits. But a warm grapefruit with brown sugar and cinammon...tops it. This is seriously the best/easiest recipe ever. Found it on Kristy's website and when I saw it I knew I had to try it. It's something you could have for breakfats but it's so good that it could quite possibly be the healthiest dessert on the planet. Hope you enjoy it, cause I sure did !!

2 large grapefruit
2 tbsp brown sugar  
Dash of cinnamon
1 cup of plain yogurt

Preheat oven to broil. 

1.  Cut each grapefruit in half crosswise.  Using a small knife or paring knife, loosen grapefruit segments by cutting along the rind and between each segment. Make sure not to cute too deep puncturing through the rind. 
2.  Line a baking sheet with foil and place the grapefruit halves on the sheet, citrus side up. 
3.  Sprinkle 1/2 tbsp brown sugar over each grapefruit half, then top each with a dash of cinnamon. 
4.  Broil in the oven for 3-5 minutes or until tops brown slightly. 
5.  Top each grapefruit half with an 1/8 cup yogurt (more if desired)  and serve while hot. 


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Chicken Noodle Soup

Well it finally snowed here in Utah and what better way to celebrate then a nice bowl of Chicken Noodle Soup? Watching "The Help" at the same time. best movie ever- seriously. Anyways this recipe was quite simple. Most recipes call for a 3-5 lbs chicken but I didn't have that so I used 2 boneless, skinless chicken breats. If you don't have marjoram you can replace it with some oregano (they are least that's what mama B tells me.) Enjoy the recipe!!

  • Ingredients
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 2 1/2 quarts water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked whole wheat macaroni elbow noodles
  1. In a large soup kettle, place chicken and all ingredients except noodles. 
  2. Cover and bring to a boil; skim broth. 
  3. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 30min. or until chicken is tender. 
  4. Remove chicken from broth; allow to cool. 
  5. Cut chicken breasts into chunks. 
  6. Skim fat from broth; bring to a boil. 
  7. Add noodles; cook until noodles are done. 
  8. Return chicken to kettle; adjust seasonings to taste. 
  9. Remove bay leaf before serving.

Oh and I know that macaroni noodles arn't the "norm" for chicken noodle soup but that's what I personally like. You can do whatever kind you like :)


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Crab Meat Pasta Salad

I know it really isn't the time of year for pasta salad or crab meat but I was craving some pasta salad over the weekend. I began my search for the perfect pasta salad when I found this...packed with veggies, seafood and peas? Who would have thought. I decided to give it a shot and I loved the results. Some of the ingredients seem a little odd together but I promise you that you must put all the ingredients to make it work. I made a few changes but most of it is the same. Hope you enjoy!!



Ingredients                                                                                          by: Corwynn Darkholme

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup Italian-style salad dressing
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
  • 8 ounces rotini pasta
  • 1 cup crabmeat
  • 1 cup broccoli florets, parboiled
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for time indicated on package. Drain, rinse and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine mayonnaise, Italian dressing and cheese and blend well.
  3. Add peas, pasta, crabmeat, broccoli, pepper, tomato and onions. Toss gently to mix. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hour

If you're someone who likes a lot of dressing I would suggest making more of the mayo and italian 
dressing mixture for the pasta salad.


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Shepherds pie

I grew up eating shepherds pie all the time. Instead of making it in a pie crust, my mom always made it with mashed potatoes on top. I got the original recipe from a cookbook that is called, "Celebration Cookbook" from the Canadian Bible Society. This particular recipe is from Robert Norminton. It's recipes from a bunch of bible reading Canadians, and most of them are so good, so I try recipes out of this book quite often.

  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) crushed corn flakes
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 Tbs mustard
  • 2 Tbs milk
  • 1 lbs grouned beef
  • 2-2 1/4 ounce packets of instant mashed potatoes (I just made mine from scratch, 4-5 medium potatoes)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 small onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 Tbs butter
  • 2 ounces (1/4 cup) cheddar cheese
  • Paprika for garnish
  1. Pre-heat oven at 350 degrees.
  2. Mix half the corn flakes (2 Tbs) with salt, pepper, mustard, and milk in a small bowl.
  3. Stir in the raw ground beef. get your clean hands in there and mush it around. Spread it evenly on a shallow baking dish (9x9 would work, he recommends 7x11).
  4. Make the instant mashed potatoes according to package directions (or make your own). Add the eggs, onions (yes, raw), and parsley, and mix it well. Spread it evenly on top of the beef mixture.
  5. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until bubbly or meat is cooked. 
  6. While it's baking, melt the butter and stir with the remaining corn flakes. When the pie is done, sprinkle cheese on top, and then the corn flakes. Put in the oven until cheese is melted, and then to add a crispy brown touch, broil it for 2-3 minutes (check it closely).
  7. Serve and sprinkle with paprika.
**Something was missing in this dish. VEGGIES! So I served it with corn. What I would do next time, is add a can of creamed corn between the beef mixture and the potatoes.

My dish ended up looking like this:

I mean, you can't have shepherds pie without a little (a lot) of ketchup :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Herb Butter Penne with Salmon

Good morning! New week, new recipes, and warmer weather here in Canada, thank goodness!

Remember when I made those oven roasted tomatoes, and completely butchered them? Well, I had made them for a reason, to make this "Quick and Easy Herb-Butter Penne with Salmon" from the ladies over at OurBestBites.

Now you can't see them in my picture, and that's because I was almost out of tomatoes, so I didn't get to put in as many as I had hoped for. BUT, I LOVED the tomatoes that were in there, they go so well with the salmon.

One thing, this is only "quick and easy" if you make the oven roasted tomatoes in advance, cause those takes quite a while, but worth it (if you don't turn them into charcoal like I did, that is).

The salmon turned out perfect: it was moist, flaky, and had good flavors. Simple and delicious!

Here's how I did their recipe:

  • 1 lbs salmon filet (I just defrosted 4 frozen individual salmon filets that I got at food basics--canadian grocery store)
  • 1/4 cup salted butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp parsley
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp basil
  • 8 ounces penne pasta (about 3 cups of dry noodles)
  • 3/4 cup mashed oven roasted tomatoes
  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, and cook pasta according to package directions
  2. Heat a frying pan to medium. Rinse the salmon filets and pat dry, set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, melt the butter, and add the garlic, parsley, oregano, and basil. Use 2 Tbs of this mixture and brush over both sides of the salmon. Place on the pan for about 3-4 minutes on each side, until it flakes apart with a fork. (OurBestBite ladies suggest to do it in the oven preheated at 425 for 10-12 minutes).
  4. When the pasta is done cooking, drain it, return to the pot, and mix in the butter mix and the oven roasted tomatoes.
  5. Serve each person with some pasta with a piece of salmon on top!

I also made this with a slight twist, and I will post about that another time!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Sour Cream Waffles

When we lived in Sooke, BC in the middle of no where, I remember that my parents got a waffle iron for our family Christmas gift. Now, Christy and I come from a family of 7, and this was an iron that made 2 at a time. You see where this is going...yes, as children, we spent a lot of time waiting around the table for our breakfasts while our little brother hogged a spot in the line up until the very end!

Our favorite waffles, or the ones we made the most were sour cream waffles. I remember how gross we thought that sounded, but the result is mmm gooood! I now make them every now and then for our kids, with the waffle maker we got from the Kohl's as a wedding gift.

2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup butter
1 cup buttermilk*
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking soda

*if you don't have buttermilk, add a Tbs of lemon juice or vingear at a regular cup of milk

  1. Mix the wet. Mix the dry. Mix them together
  2. Add about 1/4 cup of batter to each waffle square. Don't over fill it, it should be a blog in the center.
  3. Ideas for toppings: maple syrup (again only the good stuff), cut up fruit, whip cream, powdered sugar, jam, yogurt, nutella.

Any other topping ideas?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Gnocchi Sausage Leek Soup

Happy friday!

Ever have the Olive Garden gnocchi soup? Oh so good. Here in our neck of the Canadian woods, we are deprived of olive garden, so we are left just dreaming about eating their unlimited soup, salad and breadsticks. I know! So I had to do something about it..

Potato gnocchi are actually pretty cheap, like $1.50 for 1 kg (32 ounces). I bought a bag a while back, and since this week have been like FREEZING (-20 Celsius), soup sounded perfect. I also had leeks (look like big green onions), and so I combined a gnocchi soup recipe, with a potato leek soup, added some sausage, and OH MY GOODNESS! It was delicious! We combined it with a fresh baguette, and our canadian winter chills left for the evening.

This recipe serves about 8, typically--but when we ate it for dinner, and then for lunch the next was already gone. So in our family, it served a total of 4 adults, and 2 kids!

Cooking and prep time: less than 30 minutes guys!

  • 3-5 sausages or sausage meat, removed from the casings and cooked, or diced
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup half and half
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1 leek, cut (look here to see how to clean and chop a leek, she shows 2 ways, either way is fine, depending on how big you want to cut them)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup fresh packed spinach, chopped
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbs cornstarch (mixed in 1-2 Tbs if water)
  • 16 ounces potato gnocchi
  1. Heat up the olive oil in a pot over medium heat, and then fry the celery, carrot, leek for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir until you can smell it.
  2. Add the cooked sausage meat, chicken stock, half and half, milk, thyme, salt, and pepper. 
  3. Heat to boiling, then add the cornstarch mixed in water, stir. 
  4. Immediately add the potato gnocchi. Gently boil for 3 minutes, then reduce to simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. Add the spinach and cook until it is wilted, a couple minutes.

Oh you will enjoy this! If you want a creamier soup, you can do 2 cups of half and half, or even bump it up to heavier cream. I just happened to only have 1 cup left, and so I did the other cup with milk, and it was amazing and less fatty. Let me know how it turns out!

Bon appetit!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Poor Man's Pudding

It was my mom and oldest brother's birthday last week. My brother is the only one of my siblings that lives near me, so we have him over lots...our kids LOVE him. We had him over last night to celebrate his birthday. He is not a huge dessert person, but my mom told me that he loved this dessert growing up. So whether he still loves it or not, this is what I've made for his birthday for the past 2 years.

When it came out of the oven, it looked like a regular cake. A few minute later, it looked like the cake sank in the cake pan, with the syrup sauce overcoming it. tastes amazing!

If you have one, a bunt pan is the best for this one.

Preheat oven to  375 degrees.


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup milk
  1. mix the dry and the wet ingredients separately. When combining them together, add a little dry, then a little wet, and then mix in between each addition. Keep doing that until it's all combined and end with the dry ingredients. Set aside.
Syrup Sauce:
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup (again, the real stuff is 100 times better if you have it)
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 Tbs flour
  1. In a sauce pan over medium heat, mix the brown sugar and the flour first.
  2. Combine it quickly with the rest, and heat just enough for the brown sugar granules to melt.

NOW to baking:
  1. Pour the syrup sauce in the bottom of your bunt pan (if you don't have one, just use a 9x13 dish).
  2. Pour the batter onto the syrup sauce. Now this can be tricky. I just add clumps of cake batter next to each other until the whole pan is covered with batter. You shouldn't really see the syrup anymore.
  3. Pop it in the oven for 30-40 minutes, until the top is lightly browned (use a toothpick to make sure the cake part comes out clean).
  4. Spoon into a bowl, top with syrup sauce left from the bottom of the bunt pan.

Tip: a ball of vanilla ice cream plopped on top.--you HAVE to, it just completes this dessert.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Oven Roasted Potatoes

We make oven roasted potatoes often. My potatoes are always very different from Blake's. His are fried, so of course they probably taste a little better. I like to bake mine. I tried a new recipe that I found here at all recipes. It had a high rating, so I gave them a whirl.

LOTS of herbs!

1/8 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (left this out)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder (this was my addition)
  • (rosemary would be good here too if you want)
  • 4 large potatoes, peeled and cubed (I used 8-10 mini white potatoes, a lot of the reviews suggest using red potatoes with the peel on)

  1. Preheat your oven to 475
  2. Combine all the herb/spice ingredients in a bowl and mix it up
  3. Add your cubed potatoes and mix until fully coated
  4. Place on a large cookie sheet (I always place them on foil to save the mess)
  5. Bake 20-30 minutes, turn them occasionally to roast all sides.

Do you have a favorite roasted potato recipe? How did you like these ones. I love how much flavor they had. We ate them with steamed green beaned and pork souvlaki, delish!