Monthly Archives: September 2015

Chicken Verde Tacos

It was so nice to get up this morning to head to the gym and have it be chilly outside. Am I alone in this? Turning off the air conditioning and opening up my windows was such a good feeling. I actually think I heard my house sigh with relief. Temperatures like this make me want to bake muffins, put chili in the crockpot, throw some chicken in the oven and start a big batch of soup. And while I would love to spend my week doing just that, I have a lot of work to do so all that cooking will have to wait. Thankfully, there are many quick and easy recipes out there for us busy bees. These Chicken Verde Tacos seemed almost too easy. So much so that I didn’t think they would be very good. Boy was I wrong.

Pre-cooked rotisserie chicken is warmed with salsa verde and stuffed into a corn tortilla before being topped with a light cabbage slaw. So simple. Rotisserie chicken is a busy girl’s best friend and tacos never disappoint. The salsa verde adds all of the spicy flavor you come to expect in a taco and the cabbage slaw provides a fresh, creamy crunch. With this busy week, I’m happy to have leftovers in the fridge which can be heated up in no time for lunch or dinner. With another busy weekend coming up too, I’m not sure when I’ll get to doing all that Fall cooking I want to do. In the meantime, I’ll keep making quick and easy recipes like this as I’m sure most of you do too.

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Combine chicken and salsa in a saucepan over medium heat; cook 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated.

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Heat tortillas 20 seconds on each side over an open flame or according to directions. Combine cabbage and mayonnaise in a bowl; toss to coat.

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Divide chicken mixture evenly among tortillas. Top with cabbage mixture.

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Additions:

  • Lime
  • Cilantro

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

Sausage, Gravy, and Egg Breakfast Sandwiches

I’m so happy to be home. I was in Chicago two weeks ago for vacation, which was much needed, and in Atlanta last week for work. There is just something so nice about coming home to your own space, your own stuff, and your own bed. I went to bed so early last night that it’s embarrassing, especially since it was a Friday night. I woke up this morning feeling good (despite the fact I’m battling a head cold) and couldn’t wait to get back in my kitchen after two weeks away. Most people don’t think to spend their Saturday mornings cooking but it’s one of my favorite things to do. This morning I was so excited to make myself something new with these Sausage, Gravy, and Egg Breakfast Sandwiches.

English muffins are filled with turkey sausage, scrambled eggs, and a light gravy flavored with fresh thyme, garlic and onion powders, and cayenne pepper. This isn’t your ordinary breakfast sandwich. You aren’t going to find this at your local coffee drive-thru. I’m a bit of a sucker for turkey sausage breakfast sandwiches (Wawa Sizzlis are my FAVORITE!) so this was a nice healthier alternative. The best part in my opinion? The thyme in the gravy. The gravy makes this a bit of a messy sandwich but if you are eating them at home, who cares? Lick that gravy off your fingers because no one is watching. I’m heading to a tailgate tomorrow morning so I might just wrap one of these up and take it with me. No one at the tailgate will care if I lick my fingers either.

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Divide sausage into 6 equal portions; pat each portion into a 3-inch patty (about 1/4 inch thick). Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add patties; cook 2 minutes on each side or until done. Transfer patties to a plate. Reserve drippings in pan.

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 Combine milk, flour, thyme, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and cayenne pepper, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Add mixture to pan; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cook 3 minutes or until thick and bubbly. Remove from heat.

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Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add eggs; cook 4 minutes, stirring until curds form.

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Divide eggs evenly over bottom halves of muffins. Top each with 3 tablespoons gravy. Place 1 sausage patty and top half of muffin on each sandwich.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

Moroccan Chicken and Chickpea Stew

I flew home from Chicago on Friday and turned around and left for another work trip on Sunday. Over the last four weeks, I’ve been home for one and that week was spent hardly eating, let alone cooking (thanks to some food poisoning). Even though I was only home for barely two days this weekend, I was eager to cook. But when I’m heading away again, there doesn’t seem a point to make something that will sit in the fridge and go bad before I get back home. So I decided to make this Moroccan Chicken and Chickpea Stew so I store it in the freezer where it will be waiting for me when I get back home.

Chickpeas, fire-roasted tomatoes, carrots, and onion are mixed with broth and flavored with cumin and red pepper flake before half the mixture is blended and added back into the pot to help thicken the stew. To finish it off, chicken is simmered in the stew giving it another layer of flavor and heartiness. Cilantro and lemon zest, which are added when it’s time to serve, provide one last fresh punch to this stew. Now that the temperatures are starting to cool down a little tiny bit, I’m excited to keep my pot out and make soup, stew, and chili all fall long.

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In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and carrots; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften, about 4 minutes.

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Stir in the garlic, cumin and crushed red pepper. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the stock, chickpeas and tomatoes.

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In a blender, puree 2 cups of the mixture. Stir the puree into the stew, season and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low.

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Add the chicken and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes; season. Serve with cilantro and lemon zest.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Everyday with Rachael Ray magazine

Teriyaki Meat Loaf

Thanks to those of you who keep checking in and I’m sorry I’ve been slacking on the posts! Last week I was recovering from food poisoning and the week before that I was in Buenos Aires for work. This week – I have no excuses. I’ve been on vacation all week, laying by the lake just north of Chicago and getting in a lot of rest, relaxation and exercise. Since I’m not home, I haven’t been cooking like I normally would on my days off but I have a few recipes stashed away that I’ve made for times like this when I haven’t been cooking. One of my favorites I’ve made recently is this Teriyaki Meat Loaf.

Ground meat (the recipe calls for beef; I used turkey) is jolted with flavors of ginger, garlic, soy sauce, and sesame oil before being bathed in a little teriyaki sauce. After a first trip to the oven (since I used turkey, I cooked it for 40 minutes here), more teriyaki sauce is added and the meatloaf is surrounded with crisp green beans. Another 20 minutes in the often and the entire meal is done. This meatloaf is packed with salty sweet flavor and the green beans are perfect sidekicks. This meal was a hit for me, despite popping my jaw out of socket when eating a green bean, but I digress. I just might have to make this again when I get back home.

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In bowl, combine meat, egg, breadcrumbs, ginger, garlic, soy sauce and 1/2 tsp. oil. On foil-lined baking sheet, shape into loaf. Drizzle with half the teriyaki sauce and bake at 375 degrees 20 minutes for beef, 40 minutes for turkey.

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In bowl, toss beans with remaining oil; season.

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Top meat loaf with remaining teriyaki sauce and surround with beans.

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Bake until meat loaf edges are browned and beans are tender, 20 minutes.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions:

  • Ground turkey

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Everyday with Rachael Ray magazine

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