Thursday, April 30, 2009

Homesick Texan's Salsa

This salsa recipe is off of the Homesick Texans website. It is delicious! My whole family likes spicy so I used 2 Serrano is hot! So, start with one pepper and see what you think before adding the other. Oh, ENJOY! -Kristin

28 oz. canned tomatoes, undrained
2 Serrano peppers (or 2 jalapenos which are a bit milder)
1 c. fresh cilantro
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 onion, chopped
2 T. chili powder
juice from 1/2 of a lime
salt to taste
dash of sugar, opt.
  • Place all in blender and blend till smooth.

My family LOVES this salsa! I can't count how many times I've made it, we prefer it chunky, I put up a picture of how it looks when I make it chunky, and here's how I do it. I use the exact same ingredients, but I drain my tomatoes and I blend all the ingredients with about 1/2 a can of tomatoes until it's all mixed together, then add the rest of the tomatoes and pulse a few times until it's all chopped up.-Sarah

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Veggie Chili Beans and Rice

This is a simple and delicious and nutritious meal! If your family doesn't like spicy, then leave the jalapeno out. -Kristin

2-3 T. olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
2 cloves garlic
1 c. brown rice, uncooked
1 T. cumin
1 T. chili powder
1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can diced tomatoes
2 c. water
1 t. salt

Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese, optional topping

  • Heat olive oil in large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, green pepper and jalapeno and cook, stirring occasionally until softened and just starting to brown (5-10 minutes).
  • Add the garlic and stir for about 30 seconds.
  • Then add the cumin, chili powder and rice. Stir constantly for a minute or two.
  • Next, add the beans, tomatoes, water and salt. Stir well.
  • Bring mixture to a boil and then turn heat to low and simmer for about an hour.
  • Uncover, stir and enjoy. If desired serve with cheese sprinkled over top.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Cucumber and Red Onion Salad

Another recipe from the Nourishing Gourmet!
This stuff is great. It goes great as a side dish for grilled meats. I ate mine right on top of my bunless burger with a thick slice of tomato and avocado...delicious! It is great by itself too...I couldn't help snacking on it while waiting for our burgers. -Kristin

3-4 large cucumbers, peeled, and sliced thickly and on a diagonal
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 t. celery seed
4 T. olive oil
3 T. fresh lemon juice
1 t. salt
2-3 garlic cloves

  • In 8x8 baking dish combine the cucumbers and red onion slices.
  • In a bowl combine remaining ingredients.
  • Pour over and mix well.
  • Chill for a few hours for flavors to really meld.
  • Mix right before serving.

Sauteed Spinach with Pine Nuts

This is another awesome recipe off of the Nourishing Gourmet's website.
I love spinach and am always looking for new ways to enjoy it. This has awesome flavor and makes a perfect side dish! -Kristin

2 Tablespoon of olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
6 c. baby spinach leaves, washed and dried (this really cooks down!)
1/4 c. pine nuts
fresh lemon juice
salt to taste
  • In a large skillet, heat oil over medium high heat until hot. Add the onion and saute until soft and slightly browned (about 10 minutes).
  • Stir in the garlic clove.
  • Add the spinach leaves and stir until they wilt down.
  • Remove from heat and squeeze a little lemon juice over, toss in pine nuts and season with salt to taste.
  • Serve immediately.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Squash Fries

I love squash! I love it all year long. When I found this recipe online I thought it was genius! Butternut squash is one of my favorites, and we all love fries! -Sarah

1 medium butternut suash, thinly sliced
olive oil
kosher salt

  • Place squash slices in a bowl. Drizzle enough olive oil over to give all slices a thin even coat. (careful not to use too much, it will make them soggy)
  • Season with salt and pepper. Mix well (I use my hand).
  • Bake at 400 degrees turning until desired doneness. Will take about 30 minutes.

Italian Style Vegetables

This is a version of a recipe served to me by my friend Marie. I've been wanting to play with this recipe since I first had it at her house. This is my version and it can be adjusted according to your tastes, and ingredients on hand. -Sarah

green beans, or broccoli (about 1#)
olive oil
diced canned tomatoes (8-14 oz.)
shredded Asiago or Parmesan cheese

  • Heat olive oil in pan, add fresh minced garlic and cook a few minutes (don't brown).
  • Add vegetables and tomatoes, (if using frozen green beans thaw 1st and remove excess liquid)
  • Season with salt, pepper, and basil and whatever else sounds good or compliments your dinner.
  • Cook through and top with cheese, if desired before serving.

Whole Wheat Graham Crackers

These are so yummy! I like that they taste delicious and are whole wheat, how fun to make your own graham crackers. When I was little my Mom used to make ice cream sandwiches with ice cream between graham crackers, she still does this for my sons.  This is a recipe from -Sarah

2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup sucanant, rapadura, (or brown sugar)
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. cinnamon
1/3 cup cocoa powder (only if making chocolate graham crackers)
4 T. honey
1/4 cup water
1 t. vanilla
1 stick butter, melted

  • In a bowl stir together the dry ingredients. Add the remaining ingredients and stir well.
  • Place the dough on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Roll out with a piece of waxed paper over the dough.
  • With a cookie cutter cut through dough to make the sizes of squares you would like.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. Turn oven off, leaving the crackers in the oven. Remove after about 30 minutes. Leaving them in the oven will crisp them. Break crackers apart.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Marie's Sweet Potato Fries

I got this recipe from my friend Marie, I love sweet potatoes and these fries are awesome! I'm so glad my family loves them as much as I do! -Sarah

3 medium sweet potatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
1 t. kosher salt
1 t. paprika
1/2 t. cinnamon
  • Cut sweet potatoes in even slices. The thinner they are the quicker they will cook and also get crispier.
  • Place in a large bowl and add olive oil and seasonings. Mix well until all pieces are well coated. I use my hand.
  • Place on lightly greased cookie sheets in a single layer.
  • Bake at 425 degrees flipping fries over every 10 minutes. Bake about 30 minutes until desired doneness.

Quinoa Tabbouleh

This stuff is awesome. I got this recipe off of the Nourishing Gourmet website. If you have tried quinoa in the past without soaking it overnight or thoroughly washing it you may have not liked it. If you don't rinse super well or soak it is bitter. So, give it another try doing it the right way and you will like it a ton! -Kristin

2 cups quinoa - soaked overnight in water with 1-2 T. lemon juice, rinse in the morning in a fine seive
3 cups water
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, roughly chopped (1 bunch)
1 bunch green onions, finely chopped
1 cucumber, deseeded, peeled and chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
6 T. olive oil
6 T. lemon juice
1 1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper

  • Cook soaked and rinsed quinoa in the three cups of water by bringing it to a boil in a medium size pot and then turning down the heat simmering for 10-15 minutes covered. The quinoa should be tender and look "spouted" and the water should be absorbed. If the quinoa seems to be cooked through and there is still a little water left, you can pour off.
  • Cool quinoa by running cold water over it in a fine sieve and draining well or placing in the refrigerator for several hours.
  • After the quinoa is cooled, add the chopped vegetables to the quinoa.
  • Mix together the remaining ingredients and pour over quinoa and veggies.
  • Toss together and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve at room temperature or cold.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Curried Eggplant

I've always loved eggplant, but never knew what to do with it, other than Parmesan. I think this recipe tastes like it came from a restaurant and will impress people who don't even like eggplant. -Sarah

1 large eggplant
olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
3 t. curry powder
2 cups canned diced tomatoes (juice included)

  • Peel eggplant and cut into about 1/2 inch cubes. Place in a colander and sprinkle eggplant with salt. (I used about 1 T.) Stir and let sit for 1 hour. (this removes the bitter flavor).
  • Rinse the eggplant well and pat dry with paper towels. Heat oven to 400 degrees.
  • In a hot skillet with olive oil, cook eggplant cubes, in two batches.
  • Remove eggplant from pan and add more olive oil. cook onions until tender and add the garlic and curry powder. Saute a couple of more minutes.
  • Add tomatoes to the pan and then stir in eggplant cubes.
  • Place all in an 8x8 baking dish and bake 35-45 minutes.
  • Serve over rice.

Braised Cabbage

This is a fantastic way to fix cabbage. My whole family likes cabbage, but I don't have many great recipes featuring it, this recipe changes that! -Sarah

1/2 head of cabbage (about 1 pound)
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large onion, thickly sliced
carrots, peeled and thickly cut
salt and pepper
1/4 t. crushed red pepper flakes

  • Cut cabbage into wedges. Place in a lightly greased 9x13 pan in as much of a single layer as possible. Cut wedges about 1 inch thick at widest part. Add onions and carrots.
  • Drizzle cabbage with olive oil and chicken broth. Generously salt and pepper. Sprinkle with crushed red pepper flakes.
  • Cover tightly with foil and bake at 400 degrees for about 1 hour, until cabbage is tender. Remove foil and bake an additional 10-15 minutes until lightly browned.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Easy Cake Mix Cookies

These come together so quickly with the base being a cake mix. Lots of possibilities with this recipe! -Sarah

1 cake mix (sift to remove lumps)
1 egg
1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup water
Optional stir ins: 1 cup chocolate chips, raisins, nuts, M&M's, etc.

Mix all together in a large bowl by hand.
Bake at 350 degrees 13-15 minutes.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Yummy PB Honey Bars

This is a recipe I got from a lady at our church that cooks and bakes very healthy. These are so fantastic! A perfect snack or dessert! -Kristin

1 c. peanut butter (preferably natural)
1 c. honey
1 c. unsweetened coconut
1 c. chopped pecans or walnuts
1 c. unsalted sunflower seeds
1 c. currants or raisins

  • In microwave safe bowl place peanut butter and honey. Microwave for 1 minute and stir well.
  • Add the remaining ingredients.
  • Bake at 325 for 25-30 minutes.
  • Cool completely and they will set up perfectly.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Oreo Torte

This recipe is from a friend, she makes it a lot and everyone loves it! I personally think that you just can't go wrong with these ingredients! It's great for summer because you don't have to turn the oven on, but it's delicious any time of year. -Sarah

24 Oreos, crushed (set aside 1 cup)
1 1/2 sticks butter, melted
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
2, 8 oz. pkg's Cool Whip, thawed
1 large box instant chocolate pudding
2 3/4 cups milk
  • Place cookie crumbs in a lightly greased 9x13 pan. Pour melted butter over and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar and 1 container of Cool Whip and spread over crust.
  • Mix pudding with milk and whisk until thickened. Pour and spread over cream cheese layer.
  • Spread remaining container of Cool Whip over pudding layer and top with remaining Oreo crumbs.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Grandma's 7 Layer Casserole

This is a recipe of my Grandma, the casserole queen. With 7 kids to feed on a slim budget she made casseroles a lot! This is one of her best, my family loves this now too. -Kristin

4 c. sliced potatoes
1 large onion, diced
3 c. carrots
1/3 c. uncooked rice
1 can peas & juice
1 # ground beef, made into small balls
1 can tomato soup
1 can water
salt and pepper
  • Mix together the tomato soup and water and set aside.
  • In a greased 9x13 pan layer remaining ingredients in order listed and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • Pour soup mixture over and sprinkle again with salt.
  • Cover tightly with foil and bake at 350 for 2 hours.