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Monday, November 14, 2011

My Menu Plan 11/14/11





I have a very short cooking week this week - just Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday! We are leaving Thursday morning for a nice, long vacation! My son and I will go down to my sister's house, which for me is like going to a resort. They have extra bedrooms so I will have my own, plus lots of birds and wildlife coming to visit which are fun to watch with a warm cup of coffee from their living room. I am really in need of this rest and relaxation leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday. It is a great time to slow down and reflect on all the Lord has blessed us with!

Click here to see what others are making this week!

Monday
Ring Bologna with Parmesan Potatoes (see recipe for potatoes below!)

Tuesday
Beef Squash Casserole

Wednesday
Hoppin' John

Thursday

Leave for Chicago suburbs and start to vacation!!


Here's a quick recipe for the Parmesan Potatoes mentioned above:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Boil a large pot of water and boil the potatoes for 4-5 minutes. Remove from water and let cool. Once cooled, slice into quarters and combine with olive oil, garlic powder, sea salt and black pepper as well as the Parmesan. Mix thoroughly and place in a baking dish that has been sprayed with olive oil cooking spray.
Place into the oven and roast for 20-25 minutes. Remove from the oven and taste, re season with sea salt, cracked pepper, or garlic powder if needed. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley. Enjoy.

I am also linking up to these sites:
Serve It Up Sunday

Desiring Virtue




StoneGable


Thanks for visiting!

Monday, October 31, 2011

My Menu Plan 10/31/11





I am really enjoying trying some new recipes this fall - especially comfort food! I have a special one this week I'll be making. My husband gave me a list awhile ago of his favorite foods his mom made. She passed away when he was 19, so I don't have any of her recipes but I love trying to re-create his favorites. I'm trying a scalloped potato recipe this week! 


I also ended up loving a couple recipes from last week; stuffed green peppers and a chicken and sweet potato chowder. YUM! I'll be making those again for sure.



Click here to see what others are making this week!

Monday
Chicken Divan

Tuesday
Spaghetti (my own recipe) with Corn and Garlic Bread

Wednesday
Creamy Scalloped Potato with Ham

Thursday
Slow Cooker Pot Roast (using my own recipe and a little from here)



Friday
Leftovers!

Saturday
Going out for Date Night!


Sunday
Always my night off!


I am also linking up to these sites:
Serve It Up Sunday

Desiring Virtue


StoneGable


Thanks for visiting!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Stuffed Green Peppers




I often like asking my husband for meal ideas based on things his mom used to make when he was a boy, and many of those become regular staple meals for us. One of those ideas was stuffed green peppers. I finally got this on my menu and found a great recipe to try. I was very pleased with how they turned out!! Not only were they easier than I thought, they were really yummy. The funny thing was that while hand-pouring my sugar into the (tomato) sauce I accidentally over did it! I also used olive oil instead of vegetable oil. I really think it was that sauce that made it taste so good.



Ingredients:
  • 4 green peppers with tops cut off and seeds removed
  • ground beef
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1-2 T minced garlic
  • 2-3 T parsley
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups uncooked rice
  • tomato sauce
  • sugar
  • olive oil

Instructions:
  • Set oven to 450 and begin browning the ground beef.
  • While that is cooking, make your rice.
  • Once meat is no longer pink, add eggs, garlic, parsley and Parmesan cheese.
  • Cut the tops off the green peppers and remove the stems and seeds.
  • Stuff the peppers with the meat mixture placing them in a roasting pan.
  • Drizzle olive oil over the peppers and place in the oven for 20 minutes.
  • Remove peppers from oven and turn oven down to 350. Mix tomato sauce, a little water and sugar. Pour over top of peppers and return to oven.
  • Bake another 30-40 minutes until your peppers are nice and soft. Add a bit of water if the sauce dries up too much.

Serve and enjoy!


Thanks for visiting :o)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Chicken and Sweet Potato Chowder

  


I signed up on the Land-O-Lakes website and found a great recipe. I have been looking for some good fall recipes, and this was a great one. We have a Soup Swap at my church's mom's group next month, and I decided I'll be making this one! The whole family loved it, including my often finicky toddler son.


Ingredients:
  • 2 T butter
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut
  • 1 to 2 cans of chicken broth
  • 1 T minced garlic
  • 1 t thyme
  • 2 cups cubed cooked chicken
  • 1/2 t paprika
  • 1 cup Half & Half
  • 2 T flour

Instructions:
  • Melt butter in pan and add garlic and celery. Cook until tender.
  • Add sweet potatoes, chicken broth, garlic and thyme leaves. Cook until mixture boils and potatoes are tender (10 to 15 minutes).
  • Stir in chicken and paprika.
  • In small bowl, combine half and half with flour until smooth. Gradually add mixture to pan stirring constantly until mixture comes to a boil and is thickened (6 to 8 minutes).

Serve and enjoy! We had ours with oyster crackers.


Thanks for visiting!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Menu Plan Monday 10/24/11

Click here to see what others are making this week!


Monday
Macaroni and Cheese with Tuna and Peas (my son loves that this rhymes!)

Tuesday
Chicken and Sweet Potato Chowder

Wednesday
Stuffed Green Peppers (recipe to come)

Thursday
Slow Cooker Pot Roast (using my own recipe and a little from here)


Friday

Saturday
Going out for Date Night!

Sunday
Always my night off!

I am also linking up to these sites:
Serve It Up Sunday

Desiring Virtue
StoneGable


Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

My Menu Plan 10/17/11


It has been almost two years since I started my cooking blog. Recently, I was reflecting on that and thinking about the type of cooking that I've done the past nine years of my marriage. My cooking has really evolved! I started off in my marriage with some of the basics, but at that time my "homemade" usually consisted of cooking with Hamburger Helper or things like chicken cacciatore from a jar. Now, I love trying all kinds of new recipes and making from-scratch meals. Cooking has become something of a hobby.

Click here to see what others are making this week!


Monday
Avocado BLTs with Turkey Bacon and Side Salad

Tuesday
Beef Squash Casserole

Wednesday
Grilled Cheese with Baked Potato

Thursday
Pesto Ravioli with Chicken


Friday
Headed to Chicago for family weekend

Saturday
Chicago

Sunday
Always my night off!

I am also linking up to Serve It Up Sunday and Join in the Mayhem:
Serve It Up Sunday

Desiring Virtue
StoneGable


Thanks for visiting!

Monday, October 10, 2011

My Menu Plan 10/10/11



I really enjoy cooking and trying new recipes so I like doing a menu each week. I also got a lot out of doing the "eating through the pantry and freezer" plan, it's helped me to create better planning habits.
I've made it a regular habit now to first go through my pantry and freezer before I plan my menu. Even though I'm not doing that exclusively, I find that I'm saving at least $30 a week now on groceries just by doing better with the ingredients I already have on hand. Here is what I'll be making this week.

Click here to see what others are making this week!


Monday
Hamburger Cabbage Soup (an Amish recipe)

Tuesday
Sweet Potato Tray Baked Chicken with Peas

Wednesday
Lasagna Mac ala Kraft Sharp Cheddar Mac-N-Cheese with Corn

Thursday
Leftovers


Friday

Saturday
Possible date night - Out to Eat!

Sunday
Always my night off!

I am also linking up to Serve It Up Sunday and Join in the Mayhem:
Serve It Up Sunday

Desiring Virtue


Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Chicken Cacciatore


Well, too late I realized the recipe I printed out from My Menu Plan this week was supposed to be cooked in a slow cooker. Oops! So I had to improvise and created the recipe below, using some basics from the original recipe. I liked how it turned out! Very flavorful and my son just loved it. Definitely a keeper!


INGREDIENTS:
1-2 pounds chicken breast, cubed
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 red pepper, diced
1-2 carrots, diced
1 T minced garlic
Italian seasonings to taste
1 cup rice, cooked



INSTRUCTIONS:
  • Cook chicken in 1 tablespoon olive oil until no pink is left.
  • Add red pepper, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, carrots, chicken broth and Italian seasoning. Stir ingredients together.
  • Cook on low to medium heat until carrots and red pepper are tender (20 minutes or so).
  • Serve over cooked rice.
ENJOY!

Thanks for visiting!

Monday, October 3, 2011

My Menu Plan 10/3/11


I really enjoy cooking and trying new recipes. One thing I look for are meals that have all the ingredients in one dish. That way, the meat, pasta/potato and vegetable are all together! I love meals like that. Here is what I plan on making this week. I'm still trying to use up the ingredients in my pantry and now working on our freezer.

Click here to see what others are making this week!


Monday
Beef Stroganoff over Noodles with Peas

Tuesday
Easy Chicken Cacciatore with Corn (Recipe is from Parents.com)

Wednesday
Spaghetti with Garlic Bread

Thursday
Chicken Divan Casserole


Friday
Hamburger Cabbage Soup an Amish recipe

Saturday
Possible date night - Out to Eat!

Sunday
Always my night off!

I am also linking up to Serve It Up Sunday:
Serve It Up Sunday




Thanks for visiting!

Monday, September 19, 2011

My Menu Plan 9/19/11


I am continuing to do my "eating through the pantry and freezer project". I can't believe I'm only about half way done and this is week FOUR! I guess I had much more food than I thought. I love how I am saving $50 to $75 a week! See my post here. I'm excited that we are having some tasty and fun meals, and making use of ingredients we already have.


Click here to see what others are making this week!



Monday
Ring Bologna with Au-Gratin Potatoes (one of my husband's simple favorites)

Tuesday
Easy Chicken Cacciatore with Corn (Recipe is from Parents.com)

Wednesday
Down-home Dinner with Biscuits (Recipe is from Taste of Home)

Thursday
Hamburgers with Baked Beans and Potato Chips

Friday
Beef and Bean Burritos with Mexican Rice and Refried Beans (Recipe is from The Pioneer Woman)

Saturday
Date Night - Out to Dinner

Sunday
Always my night off!

I am also linking up to Serve It Up Sunday:
Serve It Up Sunday




Thanks for visiting!

Friday, September 2, 2011

A Tracey's Kitchen Original - Beef Squash Casserole



I bought something called "Vodka Sauce" and it's been sitting in my pantry. Well, this week as part of my "eating through the pantry" project, I decided to make something with it. Since there were so few recipes available, I decided to just try something from scratch and see how it turned out. I'm so glad I did! I ended up with something really good, and never even used the vodka sauce! (I was getting ready to add it at the end and opened the jar. It had an odd smell that didn't seem to blend with the wonderful smell the casserole had already, so I decided not to put it in!)

Ingredients:
1-1/2 pounds Beef Round Steak
2-3 T Olive Oil
3-4 T Ketchup
2 T Minced Garlic
Beef broth to cover
Sliced Summer Squash
Sliced Zucchini
Diced Tomatoes
Rice

Instructions:
  • Cut up the beef round steak into small pieces.
  • Place in large pot with olive oil, ketchup and garlic. Cook over medium to high heat until meat is browned.
  • Pour beef broth over meat until covered. Simmer on medium-high for 45 minutes to an hour.
  • Add sliced squash, zucchini and tomatoes and cook another 30 to 45 minutes. Add more beef broth should it need more consistency.
  • Cook rice according to package directions.
  • Serve meat mixture over rice.
ENJOY!

Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Your Favorite Comfort Foods



I love when Gooseberry Patch has one of their Recipe Round-Ups (click picture above). Today, they are doing a "Your Best Comfort Foods" recipe round up. They are so much fun and I get some really great food ideas. I shared my recipe for Lasagna Mac, a current favorite comfort food. They let you add the linky to your blog, so feel free to add your favorite below!


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Chicken Tetrazzini

This was a recipe I linked to in my Menu Plan Monday. It was so good that I wanted to share it in full here! The only change I made was to add broccoli, which seemed to go really well with it. It was also a big help in my "eating through the pantry" project with the 3 different kinds of soup, the chicken broth and then the pasta. Plus, it was easy to make too.



Ingredients:
1 box regular or thin spaghetti
3/4 cup chicken broth
4-6 cups chopped, cooked chicken (4-6 chicken breasts)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of celery soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1-1/2 cups sour cream
1 box sliced mushrooms
1 bag frozen cut broccoli
1 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 t pepper
1/2 t salt
Shredded cheddar to top


Instructions:
  • Cook pasta according to directions. Once done, pour back into pot and add chicken broth. Let sit.
  • Stir together the cooked chicken with soups, salt, pepper, sour cream, Parmesan cheese , mushrooms and broccoli.
  • Add pasta and mix well together.
  • Place in 9x13 pan and sprinkle with the shredded cheddar.
  • Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until cheese is melted and sides are bubbly.
  • This makes enough for two 9x13 dishes, so split in half. I cooked one, and put the other half in a gallon Ziploc bag which will go in my freezer.

Enjoy!!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Menu Plan Monday 8/29/11


This is week TWO of my eating through the pantry and freezer project. So far, we have saved close to $125! See my post here. I'm excited that we are having some tasty and fun meals, and while mainly using ingredients we already have!


Click here to see what others are making this week!


Monday
Corn Chili with Biscuits (I used ground beef instead of ground turkey)

Tuesday
Chicken Tetrazzini with Broccoli

Wednesday
Spaghetti with Corn and Garlic Bread

Thursday
Vodka Parmigiano Sauce with Round Steak and Vegetables (my own concoction added to the sauce)

Friday

Leftovers

Saturday
Camp Cook Out

Sunday
Always my night off!


Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Menu Plan Monday 8/22/11

I went completely without a menu plan last week, since we were having a rough week on the home front. It feels so good to get back into it even thought I only missed one week. This week starts a fun project of eating through the pantry and freezer. Click here! I'm excited that we have some tasty meals coming, and without spending extra money!

Tuesday's Meal


Click here to see what others are making this week!


Monday
Breakfast for Dinner: Eggs and Sausage Patties with Toast

Tuesday
BBQ Ribs with Dill Potatoes and Broccoli
(The dill potatoes were great; I cut up some red potatoes and put them in a pan, sprinkled them with olive oil and fresh chopped dill then baked on 350 for 45 minutes. YUM!)

Wednesday
Mullagatawny (Curry Potato Soup) with Chicken and Peas

Thursday
Date Night so eating out!

Friday

Spanish Rice adding Beef and Peas

Saturday
Fried Chicken and Au Gratin Potatoes

Sunday
Always my night off!


Thanks for visiting!

Eating Through the Pantry and Freezer

My Pantry Right Now

We have had some challenging times in our family over the past month, with my husband struggling with depression again. Other than when we've been on vacation, last week was the first week I didn't put together a menu plan. It felt very strange! I also noticed our grocery bill has been rather high the last couple months and decided it was time to try to save some money. I found a blog post with some great ideas for making some good meals while using up the things in your pantry and freezer. I'm hoping to do this for the next few weeks, that's how much stuff we've got! See this post: Eating Through the Pantry

My plan is to buy only our essentials (milk, juice, eggs, cheese, bread, cereal and produce) with a goal of saving $100 each week. It'll be great if I can get a full three weeks out of it and save $300. My husband is in a union job and for those following the news in Wisconsin, the governor has ended collective bargaining (except for wages) which means a large hit to our family paycheck every month. This will be a great way to cut on our expenses and add to our savings account.

Has anyone else done this before and have insight to share?

Thanks for visiting!

Rib Marinade in the Slow Cooker


I have been playing around with a few different BBQ recipes to get the right flavor and texture for when I make ribs. Here is my "home made" recipe based on what has worked. I use either boneless pork or beef ribs and make them in the slow cooker. You can always add more water or beef broth as needed to cover up your meat.

Place meat in slow cooker and pour the following on top:
1 cup ketchup
1 cup water
1 cup beef stock
1 T minced garlic
2T honey
2 T sugar
2 T Worcestershire
2 T olive oil
2 T favorite BBQ sauce

Once the ribs are done (about 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high), remove them. Spoon some of the sauce into a pan. Add a tablespoon or two of corn starch and heat on medium for 5 to 7 minutes. Use this for a wonderful gravy!

ENJOY!!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Menu Plan Monday 8/1/11



I have been enjoying a full summer with not much time to post new recipes here :o(
I cannot believe it is already August 1st!!! I do hope to do more individual recipe posts in the fall!

I love participating in Menu Plan Monday and putting together a menu every week. It has been a great way to try a variety of new recipes and to see what others are making. I receive so much payback from being organized in my grocery shopping and knowing what I'll be cooking during the week. It also makes it easy to shift the meals to a different night if something comes up.


Click here to see what others are making this week!



Monday
Lasagna Mac (with frozen corn added to original recipe)

Tuesday

Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches with Five-Bean Salad (this is pretty much a do-over from last week)

Wednesday
Shepherd's Pie (from Nicko's Kitchen)

Thursday
Picnic (burgers and hot dogs)

Friday

Tuna Alfredo with Broccoli

Saturday
Leftovers

Sunday
Always my night off!


Thanks for visiting!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Menu Plan Monday 7/25/11


I have been enjoying a full summer with not much time to post here on my recipe blog :o(
I hope to do more individual recipe posts in the fall!

I love participating in Menu Plan Monday and putting together a menu every week. It has been a great way to try a variety of new recipes and to see what others are making. I receive so much payback from being organized in my grocery shopping and knowing what I'll be cooking during the week. It also makes it easy to shift the meals to a different night if something comes up.


Click here to see what others are making this week!



Monday
Zippy Beef and Ziti Skillet and Corn Spoon Bread (bread recipe to come)

Tuesday
Buffalo Chicken Meatballs over Rice with Five-Bean Salad

Wednesday
Out to Dinner for our 9-Yr Anniversary!

Thursday
Tasty Beef and Bean Burritos

Friday

Korean-Style Chicken Noodle Bowls and Steamed Broccoli

Saturday
Leftovers

Sunday
Always my night off!


Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Menu Plan Monday 7/18/11


I enjoy putting together a menu every week and using the ingredient list to do my grocery shopping. In fact, I've been doing this so long that I think I'd be lost at the grocery store without it! I love how I don't have to think about what I'm making and I can shift the meals around too if another night of the week works better. I also like to link up and get some new ideas too.


Click here to see what others are making this week!



Monday
Leftovers

Tuesday
Toasted Chicken Sandwiches with Tomato and Spinach

Wednesday
Chop Suey

Thursday
Savory Sausage Rice with Green Beans

Friday
Reuben Wraps

Saturday
Pizza

Sunday
Always my night off!


Thanks for visiting!