Monday, March 29, 2010

Pizza Soup

So tonight was a rendition of a recipe that I found in a Taste of Home Cookbook. I love these cookbooks becasue they always have great pictures and the recipes are easy to modify for what you have on hand, or because you are feeling a little creative.

Pizza Soup

1/4 cup Pepperoni slices cut into pieces
1/2 pound of cooked, ground hamburger
1 Tbs Italian Seasoning
2 (10oz) cans of Condensed Tomato soup
1 cup Spaghetti Sauce
1 1/4 cup of water
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup small star shaped pasta

1/2 cup Chopped Black Olives
2 Cups Shredded Cheese

in a sauce pan combine Soups, cream, Sauce, Water and Italian Seasoning bring to boil. Add Pasta, Pepperoni and Hamburger. Cook, stirring frequently until past is al dente. Serve with Cheese and olives on top. You can also add other favorite pizza toppings like sausage, Onions, Peppers. I also serve this with garlic bread, or a flat bread with melted cheese on it. This is actually really easy and only took me about 10 min from start to finish.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Book Review: The Julia/ Julie Project

Well I finally watched the movie to the book Julie and Julia. This book has a special interest to me because of my love for cooking and how funny I have always thought Julia's voice was so unique. When I was in cooking school we would always imitate her voice as we would do any of our labs. 

I would say the movie was much better than the book. I admire Julie Pawell for her courage, determination but for the love... how many time do you need to drop the f bomb honey? Also some of the crazy stories really could have been left out. Well maybe she wanted to, but her editor wanted to keep them in there... Maybe if I actually meet her I will ask her.

I thought Meryl Streep did a wonderful job... Simply put she was great.

I will have to admit, when I was younger I would read these cook books and dream of mixing, stirring, baking and tasting these great recipes. Too many people don't know the sacrifice and headway that Julia Child truly did make. I wonder how many women who are getting married this year will receive her cookbook and never open it? Probably the same people who don't read their bible they were given either.

Well I loved her book. It gave me wings at an early age and now as a mother and a chef... I love it even more. I respect and truly understand what she went through to become a great household chef. Because that is what we truly are. We are chefs in our own kitchens, in our own homes.

Monday, March 22, 2010

FREE Papa Murphy's Pizza Coupons

So want to take a night off from cooking? Stop by Papa Murphys and pick up a pizza, a salad and some cookie dough. Their menu is listed with great pics. You can call ahead and they will have it ready for you. So to make it even better I found some great Free Coupons to get a pizza that will fill you tummy and leave some green in the wallet. ENJOY!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Roasted Chicken and Vegetables

Another crock pot classic creation from me! SInce I am in coaching season, I am experimenting ways for me to get dinner done early in the day so we have a hot meal ready to go when we all get home.

2 boneless chicken breasts cubed
3 medium carrots, med dice on the bias
4 medium yukon gold potatoes, large dice
1/2 medium yellow onion, small dice
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 cup chicken stalk
1/4 cup mild Miso soup base
1/2 cup cream
2 tsp of no salt Kirkland Brand seasoning from Costco

Place crock-pot on Medium heat. Add stalk, seasoning and miso. Add all veggies and chicken. Stir. Cook for 4 hours. Remove veggies and meat. turn crock pot on high. Add cream to thicken sauce. You can also do this on the stove top which is a little faster. Return Meat and veggies to sauce. Serves 4. I also like to serve with some Jasmine rice because my husband doesn't love potatoes as much as rice. The sauce is wonderful!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Undercover Eater: Lone Star Steakhouse

So for my adventure this time, we took the kids to Lone Star Steakhouse. As far as Steak houses go, this is a great place for family and relatively inexpensive meal. 

Rachel's Rating: Overall-3 STARS, Family Friendly, Conversation 

What We Ate: Amarillo Cheese Fries, 8 oz Filet Mignon, Sweet Potato, Salad and Chili. Loved the classic fried with melted cheese and bacon. What was great was that both my husband and I order the exact same steak but different finishes and they both came out wonderful. I like mine well done and he likes his medium. They both arrived at the same time, both juicy and both were hot off the grill. I know I shouldn't be that excited about it, after all it is a steak house. But the reality is that I have eaten my fair share of overcooked or undercooked steaks. I think we all have.

What Was Great About the Night: Our waitress was wonderful. My husband never had an empty glass and she brought out extras like sauce, bread and treats for my 2 year old. I love it when the wait staff checks in on us. Not every 2 seconds, but I hate how some places and people get so crazy they just drop your food and the check and thats all you see from them. Also i noticed how the night manager was making his rounds as well to make sure that everything was ship shape.

What the Atmosphere was Like: "Don't Mess with Texas!" Overall everything was nice. I do miss the tossing peanuts on the floor thing.

What would I Change if I was the boss?: Their plate sizes. I know they use those long, oval plates for when they serve those monster sweet potatoes, but when you don't, it looks really funny. When your choice of side is not the sweet potato, you have this steak all alone, chillin' with nothing. Also they don't serve their dishes with a vegetable side item. You get a choice of your starch, but no veggies. Maybe they did a survey and discovered that too many people were not wanting them.... who knows. I think it would bring balance and color to the plate, fiber to our diet and come on... its not too pricy to provide a veggie and a choice of starch.

Double Baked Mashed Potatoes

Looking for a way to remake those leftovers? Well here is a new section dedicated to you. Take those leftovers and give them a make over... your family will never know! The meal will be tasty! And you will have so much more time on your hands!

2 1/2 cups of mashed potatoes
1/4 cup sour cream
1/8 cup warm milk
1/4 cup bacon
1 cup of cheddar cheese (or favorite)
1/8 cup chopped chives (optional)

 Preheat oven to 375, or crock-pot on med. Mix warm milk, sour cream and 3/4 cup of the cheese. Fold into potatoes. Spread into greased pan or crock-pot. Sprinkle on remaining cheese, chives and bacon. Cook until warmed through and cheese is melted. Serve piping hot!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Modern Cheese Steak Panini

1 lb of thin slices of New York Steak
1/2 tsp of Kirkland Organic Non salt seasoning
4 slices of Provolone or Sharp Cheddar
4 slices of Great Harvest Cheddar Garlic Bread
1/3 cup Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ Sauce
1/2 Cup Julianne Red Peppers
1/3 Cup Jullianne Red onions

Saute Onions on medium heat in a non stick pan. After 2 min add slices of meat. Saute for 5 min. Add peppers, seasoning and sauce. Pre heat panini grill. Take slices of bread and lightly spread butter on one side of each. Add meat to one slice of bread, top with cheese and remaining slice of bread. Grill until bread is golden and toasted.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Orange Curry Chicken

2 large boneless, skinless chicken breats
1 can of coconut milk
1 TBS of Panda Express Orange sauce
1 cup water
1TBS chicken base
1tsp Yellow Curry Paste

4 cups of cooked Jasmine rice

Place all ingredients except rice, in a med to large crock pot. Place on Low Heat. Stir occasionally. Serve with the Warm rice and Soy Sauce.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Grandma's Fuffy Oven Pancakes

Here is a favorite any meal recipe. We usually serve them with powdered sugar and or syrup. I remember watching my grandma pull these out of the oven and be amazed these oven pancakes got so big!
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter or margarine
Heat oven to 450 degrees F.
In blender or bowl, blend together eggs, milk, flour, and salt.
Melt butter in 9x13 pan in oven.
Remove pan from oven.
Pour in batter.
Return to oven and bake (without peeking) for 18 minutes.
Pancake should be very high and puffy.
Remove from oven and cut into 6 large squares