Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Pasta e Fagioli (Olive Garden Soup)

1 lb ground beef
1 medium onion chopped
1 cup slivered or chopped carrots
1 cup diced celery
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
1 15 oz can red kidney beans
1 15 oz can great northern beans
3 14 oz cans beef broth
½ tsp oregano
1 ¼ tsp pepper
2 ½ tsp fresh parsley (or 1 tsp dried)
¾ tsp tobassco (don’t leave this out)
26 oz spaghetti sauce (traditional flavored)
1 cup dried pasta shells

Sautee beef in oil. Don’t drain. Add onions, carrots, celery and tomatoes. Simmer 10 minutes and stir occasionally. Drain and rinse beans lightly then add to pot. Add beef broth, seasonings, spaghetti sauce and pasta. Let simmer for 45 minutes while stirring occasionally. This makes a BIG pot of soup. If you double it, you’ll need two big pots. Great with garlic bread!

For lower fat, I substitute ground turkey for beef. I also don’t cook it in oil. Instead I drain the turkey once cooked and add the diced tomatoes next so that the vegetables will have some liquid to cook in (instead of the oil).

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Cafe Rio Burritos Enchilada Style

I have spent the last year of living here combining Cafe Rio recipes to find one that tastes most like cafe rio. I have never written down a recipe for it, but I taught a few people how to make them and then one of them wrote it down so here it is:
I think it is best with homemade tortillas. Here's my moms recipe:

To make the tortillas:
5 cups of flour
1/2 cup shortening
1 Tbs. salt
1/8 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2-1 3/4 cups water

Cut the shortening into the dry ingredients, add water. Roll into balls (about the size of clementine oranges). Using rolling pin, roll out each tortilla as thin as you can. Put on griddle at about 425 degrees. This only takes a few minutes, cook on each side.

To make the pork:

Put a pork roast in the crockpot (whatever size you'd like; I find pretty much all sizes turn out great)Add 1/2 can coke or dr pepper (don't use diet). Sprinkle in brown sugar (start with about 1 Tbs, and add more if needed)Cook for 10-12 hours on low. Take roast out, put on plate. Throw away the juice from the crockpot. Shred pork, put back in crockpot. Add one small can of enchilada sauce (green). Add brown sugar (1 cup to start). Cook in crockpot on low for another 1-2 hours.

You can add whatever you'd like inside the burrito. What I usually do is put black beans, pork, mozzarella cheese, and 1 or 2 spoonfuls of enchilada sauce inside the burrito. Roll up, and then smother the tops with more enchilada sauce and mozzarella cheese. Cover the burritos entirely with sauce (otherwise the edges get crunchy). Serve with sour cream, salsa and whatever else you think sounds good!

7-Layer bars (Magic Bars)

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 c (1 stick) butter or margarine, melted
1 (14 oz) can Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 C (6 oz) butterscotch-flavored chips
1 c (6 oz) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 1/3 c flaked coconut
1 cup chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 350 (325 for glass baking pan). In small bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs and butter; mix well. Press crumb mixture firmly on bottom of 13x9 pan

Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over crumb mixture. Layer evenly with remaining ingredients. Press down firmly with fork.

Bake 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool. Chill if desired. Cut into bars. Store leftovers covered at room temperature.

**It works well to line entire pan with a sheet of aluminum foil first. Coat foil lightly with cooking spray. When bars have cooled, lift up edges of foil to remove from pan and then cut into squares.

Texas Sheet Cake

My mom always made this for Court of Honors, big get-togethers, etc.

Combine in large bowl: 2 c flour
2 c sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp soda

Bring to boil: 2 sticks margarine/butter
1 c water
4 tbsp cocoa

Add boiled mixture to flour mixture. Add 1/2 cup sour cream and 2 eggs.

Mix well, pour into greased cookie sheet (large, with 1" sides). Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.

Bring to boil: 1 stick margarine/butter
6 tbsp milk
4 tbsp cocoa
Add 1 box powdered sugar (16 oz). Mix well, add 1 tsp vanilla and chopped nuts(opt). Ice while cake is hot.

Sausage Tortellini Soup

I just found this recipe a few months ago, and it's my new favorite soup recipe!

1 lb mild Italian sausage
1 c. chopped onion
2 cloves garlic
5 c beef broth (bouillon)
1 c water
2 c chopped tomatoes (28 oz can)
1 c sliced carrots
1 1/2 c zucchini (sliced)
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 tsp oregano
1-8oz can tomato sauce
2 c tortellini (8 oz) -I use the cheese tortellini
3 tsp parsley

Remove skin from sausage and cook until brown. Remove sausage from pan and leave drippings. Blend all ingredients, except tortellini, zucchini and sausage. Simmer for 30 minutes. Add reserved ingredients and cook for 30 more minutes.

Minestrone Soup

This is super easy, and similar to taco soup.

1 lb. hamburger browned with onion, salt & pepper
3 cans Campbell's minestrone soup
1 big can pork & beans
3 c. water
2 tbsp worcestershire sauce

Mix and simmer till warm.

Tater-tot Casserole

Brown one pound ground beef. Drain grease and put in casserole dish. Mix in one can drained green beans and one can Cream of Mushroom soup (I usually add about 1/2 can of milk too) Top with tater-tots. Bake at 350 until sauce bubbles and tater-tots are warm all the way through.

I like to eat this with ketchup as well.

Spaghetti Pie

Cook spaghetti, drain. (use 1 small package)
Mix together 1 Tbsp oil and two beaten eggs in small bowl, and then mix with cooked spaghetti.
Put half in pie plate, cover with mozzarella cheese,
Rest of spaghetti, rest of cheese. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Serve with spaghetti sauce.

Sesame Chicken

3 or 4 chicken breasts cubed (raw)
1/4 c. peanut oil
1/2 c. flour with salt & pepper (put in large ziploc bag and shake cut up chicken to coat)
Fry chicken in oil

1/4 c. sugar
1 Tbsp. chives
1 Tbsp. sesame seeds
1/4 c. soy sauce
Heat to dissolve sugar (you can add this to the pan with the chicken or cook in seperate pan and then combine)

Serve over cooked rice.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Soft Gingersnaps

Anne, your recipe made me quite famous yesterday. THANKS for sharing!! They were SO TASTY!

2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1/2 cup molasses

4 cups flour
4 tsp baking soda
1 T ground ginger
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt

In a mixing bowl, combine sugar and oil. Mix well. Add eggs, one at a time, beat well after each. Stir in molasses. Combine dry ingredients - gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Shape into 3/4 inch balls and roll in sugar. Place 2" apart on cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 10 -12 minutes. Remove to wire rack.

A fun addition, especially for the holidays: after cookies have cooled, dip half the cookie in white chocolate and cover with red & green sprinkles.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Buffalo Chicken

Last night, desperation led to innovation.

I threw one packet of Buffalo Wing Mix  and 2 lbs of boneless, skinless chicken thighs into the crock pot.  It cooked for 4 hours on high, though if I'd had more time, I would have let it go for six so it would completely fall apart.

I served it with crunchy whole wheat rolls.  Everyone in my family enjoyed this quite a bit!  (It's so rare that this happens, that I walked around in amazement for the rest of the night.)  

Monday, September 15, 2008

Mexican Beef Sandwich Rolls

I grew up on these and just made for the first time this last weekend since I have been married. I had forgotten how yummy they are!

1 can sliced olives, drained (optional)
1 (7 oz.) can green chili salsa (I bought the La Victoria taco sauce and just used half of it)
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. chili poowder
6 rectangular french rolls (my mom would just do a big one on a loaf of French bread)
1/2 lb. ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1/4 lb. sliced mushrooms (I used canned)(optional)
4 oz. cheddar cheese, sliced
6 slices crisp cooked bacon

Cut rolls in half lengthwise. Scoop out most of inside. Lightly toast cut sides. Set aside. Brown beef. Add onion and mushrooms. Cook until limp. Stir in seasonings and salsa. Simmer until liquid is absorbed. Place beef filling in hollow rolls. Top with 1 slice of bacon and a slice of cheese. Place the top of the roll on and roll in foil. Heat at 375* for 12 to 15 minutes, or if chilled, 30 minutes.


Thursday, August 21, 2008

BBQ Ranch Chicken and Bacon Wrap

This has become Matt's and my favorite berfore church Lunch it is so quick and yummy.

12 Banquet Original Chicken Breast Tenders

1/4 C Ranch Dressing

2T BBQ Sauce

4 Flour Tortillas

1 C Shredded Lettuce

1/2 C Chopped Tomato

8 slices of Bacon, cooked crisp

1/2C Shredded Cheese

Cook your chicken Tenders. While cooking combine dressing and BBQ sauce in a bowl, spread over tortillas. Add all else

Monday, August 4, 2008

Summer Bean Pineapple Salsa

Rinse the following in a colander:
- 2 can of Black Beans
- 1 can of garbanzo beans
- 1 can of white (great northern) beans
- 1 can of kidney beans
- 1 can of pineapple tidbits

Toss bean/pineapple mixture in a large bowl.

- 2 cups of frozen yellow corn (thawed)
- 1 Yellow Bell Pepper, chopped
- ½ red onion, chopped
- 1 small hand full / bunch of fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- 1 small fresh jalapeno, diced
- 2 TBS of minced garlic (about 3-4 cloves pressed)
- 1 large bottle of Italian Dressing

Mix well, cover, and chill in fridge for at least one hour (or overnight.) Drain excess dressing before serving cold. Goes well with tortilla chips or pita. It is also great as a summer salad served over spinach with feta cheese.