Jan 202017
 

 

Paula Deen’s Crock Pot Potato Soup

1 bag (30 oz) frozen hash-brown potatoes
2 cans (14 oz ea) chicken broth
1 can (10.75 oz) cream of chicken soup
1/2 C chopped onion
1/3 tsp ground black pepper
1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

Optional Garnish: minced green onion, shredded Cheddar and bacon

 

In a crock pot, combine potatoes, broth, soup, onion, and pepper. Cover, and cook on low for 5 hours.

Stir in cream cheese, cook 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until combined.

Garnish with green onion, and/or Cheddar and bacon if desired.

 

Thoughts
I’ve always made homemade potato soup using my mom’s recipe. This time I thought I’d look for a recipe online and see what I could find. I found this recipe by Paula Deen and thought I’d try it.

I wondered how the ingredients would work since I’ve never used cream cheese, chicken broth, or cream of chicken soup. It was easier than easy to make, and the ingredients didn’t cost much.

The soup was good, but I think I’ll stick with my mom’s recipe most of the time, and use this for when I’m not feeling like peeling a bunch of potatoes.

As you can see, I took the photo without the optional garnishes. It was fine without them, but they do add a bit more flavor.

 

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wkendcooking

Hosted @ Beth Fish Reads

&

Souper Sundays2

Hosted @ Kahakai Kitchen

 

Jan 142017
 

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This is #1 of 6 recipes for my Pin It & Do It Challenge

The reason I chose this recipe instead of the one of the many others on the web, was because it has a 5 star rating from 1038 reviews. How could it not taste good with that kind of rating?

Simple BBQ Ribs
2 1/2 pounds country style pork ribs
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons salt
1 cup barbeque sauce

Place ribs in a large pot with enough water to cover.
Season with garlic powder, black pepper and salt.
Bring water to a boil, and cook ribs until tender.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
Remove ribs from pot, and place them in a 9×13 inch baking dish.
Pour barbeque sauce over ribs.
Cover dish with aluminum foil

Bake in the preheated oven for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until internal temperature of pork has reached 160 degrees F (70 degrees C).

Changes I Made
I didn’t follow this recipe exactly. Instead of bringing the water to a boil, I turned the burner on low and just let the ribs cook for about 4 hours. I also poured a whole 18 oz. bottle of Stubb’s Hicory Bourbon BBQ Sauce over them instead of 1 cup.

What I Thought
WOW, these ribs were so tender! I’ve never had ribs that were that tender before. They tasted really good. We loved them and I’ll definitely make them again. I’ve added this recipe to my list of favorites. The next time we have a family get together, these are definitely going on the menu. Best ribs I’ve ever had!! There were a few ribs left, so the next day I made a sandwich with colby/jack cheese and pickles. Yummy!

 

wkendcooking

Hosted @ Beth Fish Reads

Nov 192016
 

Ok, so I finally made the Crack Chicken recipe I found here. I was so looking forward to tasting it since everywhere I turned I was seeing people rave about it. I’ll not be giving it any raves. For me, the taste of the cream cheese was so very overpowering. If I ever decide to give it another try, I’ll only use one cream cheese.

I fixed two sandwiches because I was starving, but I could barely finish the first one. It was one of those times that the more I ate the bigger it got. The second sandwich went into the garbage disposal.

I was so disappointed. I thought it was going to be amazing. It wasn’t. Still, without the second cream cheese it might be. I haven’t decided if I want to give it another try or not. If I do, I’ll let you know my thoughts.

 

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Nov 052016
 

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I’ve been craving the Cheese Ravioli w/ Broccoli & Alfredo Sauce that I’ve made before. This time I wanted to try it with cheese tortellini and switch the broccoli with peas and corn.

Cheese Tortellini With Peas, Corn & Alfredo Sauce
2- 16 oz. Cheese Tortellini
16 oz. frozen peas
16 oz. frozen corn
2- 16 oz. jars Alfredo Sauce

Make tortellini as directed on bag
Make peas and corn as directed on bag
Place tortellini, peas and corn in large pot
Add Alfredo sauce
Heat, stirring occasionally
Serve
Thoughts
I only made half a recipe since there is only two of us, and there was still a small bowl left over. I thought this was really good and suprisingly, so did son Anthony! It was a really low cost meal and so quick and easy to make. Not 100% sure, but I think I like the cheese ravioli and broccoli just a bit more because, well, it has broccoli. My son likes peas and carrots more than he does broccoli. This recipe is a keeper for when I want a quick and easy meal! The corn is hard to see, but believe me, it’s in there.
wkendcookingWeekend Cooking is hosted @ Beth Fish Reads
Oct 252016
 

We love chili. I make it throughout the year, whether it’s cold or hot outside. I always use a recipe Henry and I came up with many years ago. But this time I used one I saw @ Around My Family Table. Here’s the recipe:

10 Can Chili
2 lbs ground beef
2-15oz cans tomato sauce
2-15oz cans kidney beans (with liquid)
2-15oz cans pinto beans (with liquid)
1 med onion, diced or one handful of dried onion flakes
1-2 small cans diced green chilis
2-15oz cans diced tomatoes
4 teaspoons cumin powder
4 tablespoons chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons salt
2 cups water

Brown the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat.  Drain off the fat.

In a large pot, combine the beef plus all the remaining ingredients, and bring to a simmer over low heat.

Cook, stirring every 15 minutes, for 2 to 3 hours.

(For the slow cooker: brown the meat.  Add everything to slow cooker pot.  Cook on low half the day or high for several hours.  Stir often.)

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Adaptions
used 2 1/4 lbs. ground chuck
didn’t add onions
melted slices of American cheese in the bowls

Thoughts
This recipe made six big bowls which was too much, we ate it for dinner three nights. If I make it again I’ll only use one can each and cut back on the spices since we both thought it was a little too spicy.

My family says I’m weird, but I always smear peanut butter on a piece of bread (or two) and fold it over to eat with my chili. It’s so good!

This is a cheap, quick way to make a pot of chili. I loved that it has cumin, I love cumin!

Souper Sundays

Oct 082016
 

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It’s time to cook with Heidi Swanson @ I ♥ Cooking Club

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California Yogurt Bowl

Spoon one cup of whole milk yogurt into bowl

Top the yogurt with:
a bit of thinly sliced, ripe avocado
1/3 cup lightly smashed boysenberries (or blackberries)
1 tablespoon maple syrup
scant 1/4 cup raw rolled oats
a tiny bit of sea salt, optional
Each bowl serves one

Thoughts
This was my first time trying a Heidi Swanson recipes, and it is very good. In fact, is now my new favorite breakfast. I’ll be making it a lot from now on. It will also be a great choice for when I feel a bit hungry and want something that’s light and healthy. Quick, easy, and healthy. Seriously yummy!

I adapted this a bit by not using maple syrup, I used honey instead because that’s what I had on hand. I also cut up some extra avocado and blackberries to put on top.

 

I ♥ Cooking Club

Weekend Cooking

Oct 012016
 

1

Italian Sausage Baby Broccoli Pasta with Oregano Gremolata and Pramesan

9 oz  Sweet Italian Sausage
6 oz  Gemelli Pasta
6 oz Baby Broccoli
1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
2 Cloves Garlic
1 oz Almonds
1/4 oz Oregano
1 Lemon
1 T Olive Oil

Wash and dry all produce. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Line up the baby broccoli
on your cutting board, and cut into 1-inch pieces. Discard the ends.
Roughly chop the garlic. Pick the oregano leaves off the stems.
Discard the stems.

Place the sausage onto a baking sheet. Cook in
the oven for about 15 minutes.

Add the pasta to the boiling water. Cook 9-11
minutes, until al dente. While the pasta cooks, add the baby broccoli
to the same water. Cook 3-4 minutes, until tender. Remove the baby
broccoli with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Meanwhile, place the almonds, oregano
leaves, and chopped garlic in a pile on your cutting board. Run your
knife over the mixture until finely chopped (some larger pieces of
nuts can remain). Check on the pasta, drain when ready, then return
to the pot.

Heat a large drizzle of olive oil in a large pan
over medium-low heat. Add the gremolata mixture. Cook, tossing, for
3-4 minutes, until beginning to turn golden brown. Season generously
with salt and pepper. Remove pan from heat. Zest about 1 teaspoon
lemon directly in the pan, and stir thoroughly to release the lemon oils.

Thinly slice the sausage. Halve the lemon. Toss the
sausage, baby broccoli, gremolata, half the Parmesan cheese, and
a drizzle of olive oil into the pot with the pasta. Reheat over medium
heat if necessary. Season generously with salt and pepper. Stir in
a squeeze of lemon, to taste. Divide between bowls, serve with the
remaining Parmesan cheese.

Thoughts
I really liked this and thought it had a nice flavor. My son Anthony liked it but didn’t think it had enough flavor. After sprinkling with garlic salt he was satisfied with the taste.

The recipe was easy to do and didn’t take that much time, about 30 min.

wkendcookingWeekend Cooking is hosted @ Beth Fish Reads

Sep 242016
 

I signed up for Hello Fresh about a week and a half ago, have made two of the recipes so far, and really liked both. I like that you can choose from 3 different plans, Vegetarian, Classic or Family. I chose Classic, 5 meals, for 2 people. You can click on their link and check out the plans and recipes.

Some of the recipes are not what I would try on my own, but so far both my son and I are enjoying them.

The first recipe I made was Dukkah-Crusted Pork Chops with Mashed Potatoes and Lemony Greens. I loved everything, but my son isn’t a fan of lemon and thought the greens were too lemony.

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The second one I made was Rockfish Piccata with Sautéed Spinach, Israeli Couscous, and Lemon Caper Sauce. We both liked it all, and since I don’t like fish much I was surprised that my favorite thing was the fish.

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I like that they include prep and total time to prepare, allergy alerts, cooking level, and nutritional values. As far as I can tell for the classic 5 day plan, they give you six different recipes a week, and you get to choose the five you want.

 

wkendcookingWeekend Cooking is hosted @ Beth Fish Reads

Sep 202016
 

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Ham, Turkey, & Sharp Cheddar Panini
2 slices bread
2-4 slices each of ham and turkey
1-2 slices deli sharp cheddar cheese
butter

Butter one side of each of the bread slices
Place one piece of bread butter side down on a panini press
Layer the ham, turkey and cheese on top of the bread
Top with the other bread, butter side up
Close the Panini press and let grill until bread is golden brown

I enjoy a good Panini once in a while, and this is a good one for when you don’t have a tomato or avocado on hand. I definitely would have added them if I’d had some, but this was still a yummy Panini. Sometimes it’s good to go simple.

 

Souper Sundays2
Souper Sundays is hosted @ Kahakai Kitchen
Aug 062016
 

This is not the sandwich I had planned to make and share today, but someone left the Chipotle mayo at work (shhh, it was Anthony). I’ve been seeing a commercial for some brand of mayo, can’t remember which one, that says a grilled cheese with mayo instead of butter is so much better. Since my son Anthony and I both love grilled cheese sandwiches every once in a while, I wanted to test that out for myself. Luckily I had all the ingredients.

Not the best photos, but I was in a hurry.

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Thoughts
Anthony and I both thought these tasted almost the same as when made with butter except that there was a slight sweet taste to it. We both said we’d rather stick with butter, but mayo would be good for anyone who wouldn’t mind a slightly sweet grilled cheese sandwich.

wkendcookingWeekend Cooking is hosted @ Beth Fish Reads
Souper Sundays2
Souper Sundays is hosted @ Kahakai Kitchen
Jul 292016
 

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The July movie pick @ Food N’ Flix was Popeye, chosen by Elizabeth at The Lawyer’s Cookbook. The cast includes Robin Williams, Shelley Duvall, and Ray Walston, who by the way was on one of my favorite tv shows when I was a kid, My Favorite Martian.

I loved the Popeye cartoon when I was a child and was really excited to watch this movie since it’s been many many years since I saw it. To be honest, unlike the first time I watched it, all the singing and “silly” talk got to me a bit. I almost stopped watching it a few times, but I didn’t, and am glad I didn’t. It must have been the mood I was in, because it never bothered me before, in fact I always found it “cute”. Still, when the movie was over, my thoughts were that I loved the movie and wouldn’t mind watching it again.

There were a few times food was mentioned or seen in the movie, other than spinach and hamburgers of course, but the one that grabbed me the most was a conversation between George W. Geezil and  Wimpy. Here’s what was said:

 

 

George W. Geezil: What is that glop you’re eating?

J. Wellington Wimpy: It’s a soup burger.
These are difficult times. Burgers can’t be choosers.

 

So, I decided to make this recipe, which I found HERE, and adapted it a bit.

Burger Soup
1 lb. extra-lean, ground sirloin

1 chopped onion, about 1 cup

2 clove garlic

1 15 oz. no-salt-added tomato sauce

1 14 1/2 oz. canned, chopped, no-salt-added tomatoes

4 cups low-sodium chicken broth

1 16 oz. packaged, frozen mixed vegetables

1/3 cup brown rice, uncooked

In a large pot, cook the meat, onion, and garlic over medium heat until the meat is done.

Drain excess liquid.

Add the tomato sauce, tomatoes, broth, mixed vegetables, and rice.

Cover the pot, allow the mixture to come to a boil, reduce heat, and cook 35 minutes or until rice is done.

 

Popeye Hamburger Soup

Adaptions
I didn’t think this had very much flavor, so I added 1 tsp. each of cayenne pepper, garlic powder & onion powder. That made it a lot better.

Thoughts
This was a good soup. The ingredients didn’t cost much to buy, and it was easy and quick to make. The next time I make it I’m going to use a few each of Yukon potatoes, carrots, and a small bag of frozen peas, and maybe celery, instead of using a bag of mixed vegetables. was good good, but I like to try different ingredients to see which way tastes the best. I served it with a crusty bread which I didn’t take a photo of :(

Also linking to:
Weekend Cooking
Souper (Soup, Salad, & Sammie) Sunday

 

Jul 162016
 

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The June/July book selection @ Cook The Books is Scarlet Feather by Maeve Binchy

I’ve never read this author before so I was excited to read this book.

The book is about Cathy Scarlet and Tom Feather who are starting a catering business in Dublin. Add some relatives, friends, and some minor characters here and there and well, I thought there was just too many characters.

It’s a bit longer than what I prefer, and I do think it could have been a shorter and still had the same impact on the reader, but it did flow along well enough to keep my interest.

The book ended rather abruptly I thought, and kind of left me wondering what was next. Overall, this was a good book and I’m glad I read it.

There were so many foods mentioned in the book, and I wrote the name and page number of all the ones that I thought I might make. I finally narrowed it down to  two, Paella, which is mentioned on page 156 and Irish Stew which is mentioned on page 480.  I finally settled on Paella since I’ve never had it.

Here is what is said when the Paella is mentioned:

 

Tom said that the whole trick for the estate agents’ reception was setting up the Spanish atmosphere. Cathy said that was all very well certainly, but they must have a whole range of tapas to start. Followed by a knockout paella with all the right flavors.

 

I found a recipe here, and adapted it a bit:
Quick Chicken & Chorizo Paella
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
14 ounces chorizo, cut into 1/2 inch slices
1 small onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 teaspoon pimenton or paprika (I used pimenton, which is just smokier)
2 cups short- or medium-grain rice
1 pinch saffron threads
2 bay leaves
4 cups chicken stock
1 1/4 pounds chicken, cut into chunks (didn’t use)
1/2 cup frozen peas (I used a cup)
1 tomato, chopped
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Heat oven to 400°F.
Heat oil in a large casserole or paella pan over high heat.
Add chorizo and cook until browned and fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add onion, red bell pepper, and garlic.
Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 3 minutes.
Add rice (medium or short grain rice), pimenton, saffron, and bay leaves.
Stir to combine and coat the rice, about 1 minute.
Add chicken stock and bring to a boil.
Add roast chicken, frozen peas, and tomato; stir to combine.
Transfer skillet to oven.
Cook uncovered until rice is tender and no liquid remains, about 20 minutes.
Remove from the oven.
Fluff with a fork and serve immediately.

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I had both the chicken and chorizo on the counter to use, but decided to go with just the chorizo. The next time I make it I’ll use just the chicken, then both.

This was really good and very easy to make. The paella was full of flavor and was all I needed as a main dish. The recipe made enough for 6 bowls, so there’s plenty leftovers, saving you from having to cook the next night and/or trying to figure out what to take for lunch.

Cook The Books

Weekend Cooking

Jun 272016
 

Last week I was searching for sandwiches to see if I could find one I had never tried before. I kept seeing “Monte Cristo” and so I wanted to try one. I had the one I wanted to try, but because I am who I am,  I kept searching and then I found one here. It uses turkey along with ham.

Monte Cristo (I adapted it)
2 slices bread
1 teaspoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
2 slices cooked ham (I used thick sliced Boar’s Head ham from the deli)
2 slices cooked turkey (I used left over crock pot turkey breast)
1 slice Swiss cheese (I used Gruyer)
1 egg
1/2 cup milk

Spread bread with mayonnaise and mustard.
Alternate ham, Swiss and turkey slices on bread.
Beat egg and milk in a small bowl.
Coat the sandwich with the egg and milk mixture.
Heat a greased skillet over medium heat, brown the sandwich on both sides.
Serve hot.

 

Half one

Thoughts
This was so good! The bread was nice and crispy and the flavors of the turkey, ham and melted cheese was amazing. I normally don’t use so much meat, but sometimes you just want a sandwich that’s thick and meaty. Today was one of those days. I only ate half of the sandwich because it was so filling. I’ll eat the other half tomorrow for lunch. The next time I’ll make it with thin slices from the deli and see which one I like the most.

Try it, you’ll like it!

 Linking to:
Jun 112016
 
Crock Pot Chicken Thighs With Vegetables
Adapted from this recipe
1 cup chicken broth
12 medium chicken thighs
1 1/2 tsps leaves dried basil
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp ground curry powder
1 package mixed vegetables

Rinse chicken and remove skin, leaving the bone in.

Place a layer of thighs in the bottom of the crock pot.

Sprinkle with seasonings. Repeat until all thighs are in the pot.

Pour a cup of chicken broth down the side of the pot, being careful not to disturb the seasonings.

Cook on low setting of crock pot for 6 hours.

Add mixed vegetables, recover and cook for 1 1/2 hour or until vegetables are heated through.

Adaptions
I had a pack of 12 boneless skinless chicken thighs thawing in the fridge so I checked online to see what I could make with them and found this recipe. The original recipe called for turmeric which I thought I had, but I didn’t, so I used curry powder instead. I had a bag of frozen vegetables in the freezer which had peas, baby carrots, baby corn, and sugar snap peas so that’s what I used.

The original recipe said to cook on high for 4 hours, but I like cooking with the crock pot on low, so I cooked it for 6 hours. After I added the vegetables I cooked for an hour but they were still not warm enough, so I cooked for another 30 min. or so.

Thoughts
This was SO good! The seasoning on the thighs stuck really well and I thought it was perfect. If you don’t like your food really spicy you might want to cut back a little on the seasonings.

The chicken was mostly falling apart and it was all very tender. You could eat the chicken and vegetables without the broth, but I added quite a bit and it was more like a soup or stew.

This was really quick and easy to prepare, and was very yummy. I liked it so much I had it the next day for lunch. I will be making it again.

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Hosted @ Kahakai Kitchen

May 302016
 

IHCCLocalSeasonal

This week at I ♥ Heart Cooking Club it’s time to make a recipe with ingredients grown locally. Black-eyed peas are grown in Florida during this time so I chose this recipe. I love black-eyed peas!

Black-Eyed Peas and Greens Soup  (adapted from this recipe)
1 lb. boneless country pork ribs, trimmed of excess fat, cut into 1-in chunks (I used boneless pork chops)
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
1 white onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp. Winn-Dixie crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup cider vinegar  (I used white wine vinegar)
1 tbs. dark brown sugar
6 oz. Winn-Dixie dried black-eyed peas, rinsed
2 bunches green kale, (about 1 lb.) stems removed, leaves coarsely chopped
Season pork generously with salt and pepper

Heat a large heavy pot over medium-high heat until hot

Add 2 tbs of oil and pork and cook, turning occasionally, for about 6 minutes, or until browned all over

Using a slotted spoon, transfer pork to a plate

To pot, add remaining 2 tbs of oil, onions, garlic, and red pepper flakes

Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes, or until onions soften

Add vinegar, sugar, 1 tsp of salt, and 10 cups of water and bring to a simmer

Return pork and any of its accumulated juices to pot

Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes

Stir in black-eyed peas, cover, and simmer for 1 hour, or until peas have softened slightly

Working in batches, add kale, letting each addition wilt before adding next

Cover and simmer for about 45 minutes, or until pork and beans are tender

Season soup with salt and pepper

Ladle into bowls and serve

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Thoughts
I had all the ingredients on hand and the pork chops were getting close to the “use by” date so I cooked them the way the recipe said and then stored in a baggy in the fridge until I was ready to make the soup. I  added it back to the pot when the recipe said to. I was afraid being cold for a few days would make them tough, but they simmered in the soup and  were so tender and yummy. I thought this soup was amazing, but my son thought it was a bit too spicy, so next time I make it I’ll cut back on the red pepper flakes. I’ll also use less kale because we both thought there was too much compared to the amount of peas. I made cornbread to go with the soup.

This is another “will make again” recipes!

Also linking to:
May 142016
 

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This week at I ♥ Heart Cooking Club we’re making any recipe by Yotam Ottolenghi. I decided to make:

Seriously Zesty Bread Salad (adapted)

5 oz.  rustic bread,stale or fresh (I used ciabatta)
Salt and pepper
2 small cucumbers (15cm long), cut into 2cm pieces (I used 1)
3 tomatoes, cut into wedges (I used 1)
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced (I used 1/4, and cut them up in small pieces)
1 red pepper, cored and cut into large pieces (I used 1/2)
1 bunch coriander, roughly chopped (I used dill)
2 tsp sumac (optional)(I didn’t use this ingredient)
Grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon (I used 1/4)
1 garlic clove, crushed (I used 1/2)
1 1/2 tsp red-wine vinegar (I used 1 tsp.)
3 tbsp olive oil (I used 1 1/2 tbs.)

Preheat the oven 325F

Spread out the bread on a roasting tray, brush with olive oil and sprinkle with some flaky salt

Bake for 20 minutes until crispy and golden, then leave to cool

Mix all the other salad ingredients and adjust the seasoning to taste. Just before serving, mix in the toasted bread, using your hands

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Thoughts
YUM! I loved it! It was light and fresh and one of the best tomato/cucumber salads I’ve ever tried. I loved the toasted bread, it gave the salad a nice crunch. It was simple to make and had easy to find ingredients. I plan on making this again!

 

I’m linking this recipe to:

I ♥ Cooking Club

Weekend Cooking

Souper Sundays 

May 082016
 

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Ha! I just noticed that it looks like I have the top buns on the wrong bottom!

Mini Baked Ham Sandwiches (adapted)

1 pound Deli ham shaved
1 pound Swiss cheese thinly sliced
1 stick Butter
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons Minced onion dried
1 12-pack KING’S HAWAIIAN Original Hawaiian Sweet Dinner Rolls

Melt butter and mix in mustard, sauce and onion.

Cut the entire pack of rolls in half, horizontally (keeping all top and bottom halves separately in tact).

In a 9×13 inch pan, place bottom half of rolls and cover with ham and cheese.

Cover ham and cheese stacks with top half of rolls.

Drizzle butter mixture over top of rolls, making sure onion is evenly distributed.

Refrigerate over night.

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes and, once finished, separate for serving.
Notes:
I wasn’t paying much attention when I bought the ham and cheese because I didn’t buy 16oz. like the recipe says. I only bought 12oz. each. I also bought the ham and cheese from the grocery section because I didn’t want to stand in line at the deli counter.

My take:
I thought they were really good but had too much of a mustard flavor so next time I’ll use less dijon mustard. I like lots of meat and cheese so next time I’ll make sure I buy the right amount. And, even though we liked the ham and cheese, I’ll stand in that long line next time.

Anthony:
He thought they tasted good, didn’t think there was too strong of a mustard taste and didn’t mind that there was less meat and cheese. Of course he never eats more than one piece of thin meat on his sammies, and rarely eats cheese, except for burgers. That’s ok, more for me.

Final thoughts:
Will definitely make these again.

Souper_Sundays2

Hosted @ Kahakai Kitchen

Apr 292016
 

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Slow Cooker Chicken Taco Soup
1-2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 28 oz. can Rotel (diced tomatoes & green chilies)
1 can kidney beans
1 can black beans
1 can corn
1 medium white onion, chopped
1 package taco seasoning

Combine all ingredients except chicken in slow cooker and stir.
Place chicken breasts on top.
Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
Prior to serving, remove chicken breasts, shred them, and return to soup.
Garnish with low-fat sour cream & shredded cheese, avocado, cilantro, etc.
Serve with warm corn tortillas.

Adaptions
Oh boy did I adapt this recipe!
1. I used 3 large breasts.
2. I left out the can of tomato sauce and the onion.
3. I added a package of ranch dressing mix.
4. I used two cans each instead of one of the 3 beans and the corn.
5. I used 2 taco seasoning mixes.

When it was time to take the chicken breasts out and shred them, I took half the soup (no chicken) out of the slow cooker and put it in a container to freeze.

I garnished with sour cream, chopped onion, shredded mild cheddar cheese.

When I want it for dinner again I’ll take it out to to thaw, add a pound of browned ground chuck and reheat it.

 

Thoughts
This was really good, lots of taco flavor and the ratio of the ingredients was perfect. I was going to eat a hard crusty bread with it but we had some left over cornbread from the night before and Anthony said he was going to eat that instead. So I did too, not sure I’d like it with the soup. I shouldn’t have worried, they were really good together. Anthony buttered his and then crumbled it up in his bowl. I just ate mine buttered, but did occasionally dip it in the soupy goodness.

This got a thumbs up from both of us.

wkendcookingWeekend Cooking is hosted @ Beth Fish Reads

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Hosted @ Kahakai Kitchen

Apr 262016
 

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I missed the I ♥ Heart Cooking Club theme for recipes by Curtis Stone that you can eat on the couch. Since I already bought the ingredients I decided to make it this week for Potluck.

I love healthier snacks to munch on while I’m watching tv,  and with it being so hot and humid these are perfect. Especially after a walk outside.

Frozen Chocolate-Peanut-Butter Banana Bites
Makes 30 pieces
3 ripe large bananas
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate (60 percent cacao), chopped
1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Peel bananas & slice them into 1/4-inch-thick rounds; you should have about 60.
Lay half the slices on prepared baking sheet.
Using 2 spoons, place 1/4 tsp. peanut butter on each slice.
Top with remaining banana slices.
Cover and freeze until bites are completely frozen, about 2 hours.

Meanwhile, place chocolate in a small bowl and set bowl over a saucepan of simmering water.

Stir chocolate until it has just melted.

Spoon about 1/2 tsp. melted chocolate over each frozen banana bite and quickly sprinkle with 1/4 tsp. peanuts before chocolate hardens.

Serve immediately, or arrange the bites in single layers between sheets of parchment paper in an airtight container and freeze until ready to eat. Bites will keep for 1 week.

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I adapted the recipe a lot. I used crunchy peanut butter because that’s the only kind I’ve ever bought. I used walnuts because I don’t really like peanuts, and I cut the recipe in half because I’m the only one who will eat them. I used two bananas and they made 18 bites.

Yummy, Yummy Yummy! And btw, my son did try them and he said they were really good.

Sorry for the out of whack photo.