Saturday, July 31, 2010

Easy Zucchini Bread **

This was pretty good.  I loved the flavor of it.  Even after an hour, though, it was still pretty soggy in the middle.  The flavor was phenomenal, though.  I do love the idea of a cake mix base, so I'm still in search of a better recipe.  I think if you could eliminate some of the liquids, it would make a better density.  I just don't want to change it up so much that it loses the basic taste.  It's definitely a work in progress.

Photo courtesy of Recipezaar

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ Southern Living, Oct 2007)

1 cup chopped pecans, divided
1 (18.25-oz.) package spice cake mix
1 1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup canola oil
3 large eggs
2 cups shredded zucchini (1 medium zucchini)

Place 2/3 cup pecans in a single layer in a shallow pan.
Bake at 350° for 6 to 7 minutes or until pecans are lightly toasted, stirring occasionally.
Beat cake mix and next 3 ingredients at low speed with an electric mixer 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium, and beat 1 minute, stopping to scrape bottom and down sides of bowl as needed. Stir in zucchini and 2/3 cup toasted pecans. Pour batter evenly into 2 (9- x 5-inch) lightly greased loaf pans. Sprinkle remaining 1/3 cup pecans evenly over batter.
Bake at 350° for 35 to 40 minutes or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire rack, and let cool 15 minutes before slicing.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Chicken Marseilles **

This makes a really yummy sauce.  My only complaint was that it made very little sauce.  I ended up adding an extra 1/2 cup sour cream and 1/4 cup water, just to make a little more of it.  Next time, I think I'm going to just double some of the sauce ingredients and add a little chicken broth.  We had enough sauce to go on the rice, but it would have been nice to have some for the chicken as well.  Other than that, I have no complaints.  I used chicken breast tenders, since they were on sale, and I think I would do that again.  We're not big fans of chicken breasts in general, so the tenders work a little better for us.  I just had to cut down the cooking time a bit.  I wouldn't be opposed to having it again, since it was pretty good.

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ Recipezaar)

3 tablespoons butter
5-6 boneless chicken breasts
2 cups water
1 (1 ounce) package dry vegetable soup mix (I use Knorr's)
1/2 teaspoon dill weed
1/2 cup sour cream

Melt butter in skillet.
Place chicken breasts in skillet and brown for about 15 minutes, turning occasionally.
Stir in 2 cups water, soup mix and dill into skillet and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat, cover and simmer, stirring occasionallyl for 25-30 minutes until chicken is tender.
Remove chicken to a plate.
Add sour cream to skillet and stir until creamy.
Place chicken over hot brown rice (prepared according to directions) and spoon sour cream sauce over chicken before serving.

Best Dang Fried Banana Peppers ***

Our banana pepper plants in the garden are putting out peppers more quickly than I can find recipes.  These were really pretty good.  I didn't know exactly what they meant by slicing them lengthwise - as in, whether to slice through one side and leave the pepper whole, or to completely slice into two halves.  I went with slicing them into halves.  Dh and I loved them.  The kids tolerated them, lol.  It's not a batter-dip at all, but it just adds some crunch to the peppers.  It was definitely good and worth making again.

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ Recipezaar)

10 banana peppers (washed, sliced lengthwise and seeds removed)
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup saltine crackers, crushed
1 to taste vegetable oil (for frying)
Heat vegetable oil in frying pan over medium heat. 
In medium bowl, mix together equal parts corn meal and crushed saltines. 
Prepare another shallow bowl of buttermilk.
Dip banana peppers in buttermilk.
Coat with cornmeal/cracker mixture. Fry in veg oil over medium heat until golden brown. 
Drain/cool slightly on paper towels.
* Amy's notes: OP said to serve with marinara, but we served with ranch dressing as a dipping sauce.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Macaroni and Cheese Pizza ****

Thumbs up all around from us! I used ground turkey and added some Italian seasoning. I also added some chopped mushrooms. We all loved it! I do think that I'll halve the noodles, eggs, and sauce, though. This made way too much for our family of 4. Other than that, it was perfect!

Photo courtesy of Recipezaar

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ Recipezaar)

1 (14-1/2 ounce) box macaroni and cheese dinner mix
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 (32 ounce) jar pizza sauce
1 (8 ounce) package pepperoni
3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 325*F; grease 13 x 9 inch baking dish and set aside. 
Prepare Macaroni and Cheese according to box directions. 
Stir eggs thoroughly into Mac and Cheese. 
Pour mixture into 13 x 9 inch baking dish. 
Bake for 15 minutes. 
Remove from oven. Spread pizza sauce over Mac and Cheese. 
Cover with as much or as little pepperoni as you like. 
Cover with Mozzarella cheese. 
Bake for additional 15 - 20 minutes or until cheese is melted. 
Let cool for at least 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Chili Tots Casserole ***

This one actually surprised me.  Dh loves Frito Pies, and while I like them, they are just too salty for me.  I found this recipe, in the hopes that dh and the kids would like it, and we could find a decent compromise for the Frito Pies.  It worked!  I love that meat is added to this.  Of course, if you had a chili with lots of beans, it would accomplish the same goal, but the meat keeps it from being "too much" on the chili side, for lack of a better explanation.  There's not the usual chili overkill that some recipes with canned chili have.  The best part was that it was so easy, dh threw it together in no time flat, without leaving me a zillion dirty dishes in the sink.  :)
I subbed ground turkey, as usual, and I actually used 1 1/2 lbs, since that's what I had handy.  I also had dh just use one 9x13 instead of two 8x8 pans.  I didn't make the extra one to freeze.  I love that I normally have most of the ingredients on hand, so this can be thrown together at the last minute.  Keeper for us!

Photo courtesy of Recipezaar

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ Recipezaar)

1 lb ground beef (optional)
2 (15 ounce) cans chili without beans
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 (32 ounce) bag tater tots

Cook the beef and drain.
Stir in the chili and heat through.
Pour into two 8" sprayed square baking dishes.
Sprinkle with the cheese and top with the tater tots.
Cover and freeze one casserole for up to three months.
Cover and bake the remaining casserole at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until heated through.
To use the frozen casserole: Remove from the freezer 30 minutes before baking (do not thaw). Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hrs or until heated through.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Sauteed Zucchini **

This was just so-so for us.  DS2 is a butter-holic.  He would eat butter from the tub if I'd let him (don't worry - I don't, lol).  He loved this.  He had 3 helpings of it.  The rest of us just couldn't get into it, though.  The butter flavor was just too over-powering, in my opinion.  I did use dried garlic, instead of fresh, and I'm sure that made a difference.  I liked the combo of the lemon juice and garlic, though.  I think I may try this again, using olive oil instead of the butter, and see if that works for us.  It wasn't bad by any means, and anything that can get either of my kids to eat 3 helpings of veggies deserves a second chance in my book.  :)

Photo courtesy of Recipezaar

Michelle (MMmom)

4 medium zucchini
4 tbsp unsalted butter
2 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp lemon juice (I didn't measure, and probably used more)
Salt and pepper to taste

Rinse zucchini and cut into bite sized chunks. In a hot pan, melt the butter, then add zucchini and sauté for 3-4 minutes. Add the minced garlic and lemon juice and sauté for 2 minutes more. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, serve. Other vegetables can be used…yellow crook neck squash and carrots work really well.