Monday, October 31, 2011

Kielbasa and Potato Casserole "Worm Casserole"

Happy Halloween!! I wish I had a fun Halloween dish for you, but we have been so busy getting ready for the big move I didn't have time to make anything! I am making mummy dogs for Lil' G tonight after trick or treating and I suppose the potatoes look a bit like worms? Tomorrow is closing day for us and we start moving into our house.  It feels like it has taken so long to get here and now that it is here there is so much to do! Wish us luck!

This recipe was one of those kitchen cabinet recipes on a busy weeknight. It reminds me of scalloped potatoes. We loved this casserole and wished there was more after all the leftovers were gobbled up the next day.

Happy Halloween Everyone!!
1 lb turkey kielbasa, sliced and halved
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green pepper, diced
5 cups julienned potatoes (you can use hashbrowns too- less time consuming)
1 cup chicken stock
4 oz button mushrooms
4 Tbl sour cream
1 1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese
2 Tbl olive oil
2 Tbl flour (we use gluten free)
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 8X8 casserole dish with Pam.

In a large rimmed skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, sausage, and green pepper. Saute till onions and peppers are soft.

Add button mushrooms and chicken stock. Allow mixture to simmer for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with flour and stir. Allow mixture to thicken on a low simmer for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Season with salt and pepper.

Layer half of potatoes in bottom of the casserole dish spread 2 Tbl of sour cream, top with half of the sausage and veggies, and half of the cheese. Repeat.

Bake for 90 minutes (this may be adjusted if you use a different baking dish). Allow to cool for 5 minutes and serve.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Stove Top Meatballs In Sour Cream Sauce

When my Grandmother was alive we use to have Swedish meatballs every Christmas. This week I was really in the mood for meatballs, but was without her recipe until my mom returned to town. Since I didn't want to wait the extra day, I decided to try and come up with my own recipe. Meatballs are easy to make, but require a little care when prepared stove top- not a set it and forget it dish. I loved how this recipe turned out! I restarted my gravy once because it started out a little too lumpy for my liking- oops!

Today is Packer day!! We are headed to my parents house to for the game and dinner. Have a great Sunday Funday!

1/2 lb lean ground beef
1/2 lb ground pork
1 egg
1/4 bread crumbs (we use gluten free)
1 Tbl Worcestershire Sauce
1 Tbl fat free half & half
3/4 cup beef stock
2 1/2 Tbl reduced fat sour cream
3 Tbl butter, divided
1/8 cup olive oil
1/2 Tbl flour (we use gluten free)
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp onion powder

Place beef and pork into a large bowl. Add egg, bread crumbs, Worcestershire, half & half, salt, pepper, and onion powder. Mix gently with hands until everything in evenly incorporated into the meat. Roll golf ball sized meat balls and place on a plate (This should make 16 good sized meatballs).

In a large skillet, melt 1 Tbl of butter with the olive oil over medium heat. Place meatballs in the skillet and allow them to cook turning to prevent burning until they are no longer pink in the middle.  Once the meatballs have finished cooking, remove them from the skillet and place them on a paper towel lined plate.

Drain oil from the skillet and place it back on the burner. Add 2 Tbl of butter to the skillet. Once they have melted stir in the flour. Slowly add the beef stock 1/4 up at a time while stirring constantly. Allow sauce to cook over the heat from 1-2 minutes. Remove the sauce from the heat and stir in the sour cream.

Add meatballs to skillet and toss in the sauce. Serve over mashed potatoes, rice, or noodles.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Recipe Swap: Ina's Seafood Stew

I was very excited about the latest Recipe Swap theme- Soups & Stews! Soups are perfect for the cool fall evenings we are having in Wisconsin. I submitted my recipe for Zuppa Toscana, and in return received Ina's Seafood Stew from Ammie at Adventures In My Kitchen.  I love to try new recipes, and was intrigued by the this stew. However, I was a little nervous about the cost because fresh seafood is not cheap in late October in Wisconsin. Lucky for me our store was having a bag sale! Score! I loved the flavors of this stew, and it is easy to swap in your favorite seafood/fish. I tweaked the recipe a tad and was very pleased with the results! Since it is only Ron and I a scaled the recipe down so it feeds 2-3 people versus the 6 serving original. Visit A Taste of Home Cooking for more fabulous Soups & Stews from my fellow swappers! Enjoy!

Ina's Seafood Stew
Adapted from Barefoot Contessa and Adventures in my Kitchen

1 Tbl olive oil
1 Tbl butter
1/2 yellow onions, chopped 
1 cup large-diced white potatoes
1 cups chopped fennel
1 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup dry white wine
1 (14.5-ounce) can plum tomatoes chopped
1/2 quart seafood stock
2 loves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon saffron threads
10 large shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 fillet tilapia, cut in large chunks
6 mussels, cleaned
2 large scallops, quartered
1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest

Heat the oil and butter in a stockpot, add the onions, potatoes, fennel, salt, and pepper, and saute over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, until the onions begin to brown. Add the wine and scrape up the brown bits with a wooden spoon. Add the tomatoes with their juices, stock, garlic, and saffron to the pot, bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. Add the shrimp, fish, scallops and mussels, bring to a boil, then lower the heat, cover, and cook for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow the pot to sit covered for another 5 minutes. The fish and shrimp should be cooked and the mussels opened. Discard any mussels that don't open. Stir in the orange zest, salt, and pepper, to taste.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Power of Pink Challenege: Beet and Kale Risotto

October is breast cancer awaress month and Jen at Beantown Baker created a challenege 4 years ago called The Power of Pink. The goal is to raise awareness by cooking and blogging pink food in the month of October. My aunt is a breast cancer survivor, and I thought it was important that I became involved. Please head over to her blog if you are interested in participating!
While deciding what to make I was a little stumped. Luckily, I ran across a few recipes for beet risotto online and decided to make my own version. In addition to being pink this risotto is really yummy! Be forewarned that beets a be messy! No nice clothes while preparing this dish! Enjoy!

1 medium beet
1 shallot, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup Arborio rice
4 cups chicken stock (vegetable stock for vegetarian)
1 1/2 cup chopped kale
1 Tbl butter
2 Tbl olive oil
2/3 cup Parmesan cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste

Scrub the beet removing dirt and grit. Cut the stem of the beet down to 1 1/2 to 2 inches long. Make sure not to cut into the beet because it will bleed out during the boiling process. Place beet in boiling water and cook till tender (about 12 minutes). Remove beet from water and place it into a bowl of ice water. Allow it to sit for about 15 minutes. Remove the beet from water and remove the skin (this can be messy so do it over the sink). Remove stem on chop into 1/4-1/2 inch pieces and set aside.

Pour chicken stock in a medium saucepan. Bring  to a simmer (do not boil). Keep warm over low-medium heat.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter to pan; swirl to coat. Add shallots and garlic. Saute till shallots are soft and translucent (2 minutes- careful not to burn garlic). Increase heat to medium, stir in rice, and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in beets and allow any liquid to absorb. Add 1 cup stock and cook 3-5 minutes or until liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly (The stock should sizzle when it hits the pan to make sure you don't keep your heat too low).  Add remaining broth, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion of stock is absorbed before adding the next. Before you stir in the final 1/2 cup of stock, add the kale and then the remaining stock.

Stir in the cheese and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Loaded Mashed Potatoes

Ron and I had an awesome time at the Packer game yesterday! I am a bit tired today, but I suppose that is expected after you start tailgating at 8 a.m..... 

Last week was so busy for us and I apologize for the lack of posting! I think we have everything finalized for our big move! The only thing left to do is buy a new stove (Yay!) and fridge! 

I made these mashed potatoes to go with our spicy pork last week. They are really simple, but really yummy! Enjoy!

1 recipe of mashed potatoes 
1 cup grated sharp cheddar
4 strips of bacon, cooked and chopped
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/2 cup sour cream

Prepare mashed potatoes (you can use my recipe, or if you have another favorite you can use that).  Fold in cheese to warm potatoes and stir till cheese is melted. Fold in bacon, onions, and sour cream. Serve immediately.  

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Spicy Crockpot BBQ Jalapeno Pork

Someone has been bugging me to make BBQ pork. His name starts with R and ends with ON.  Ron loves BBQ pork and did not let me forget it until I came up with this quick and easy crockpot recipe.  I love spicy, and so does Ron, but you can scale the heat back in this dish very easily or you have people who don't like heat (big wimps) or children. This pork is really yummy and packs a great punch! a perfect addition to your football party!

1 1/4 lb pork tenderloin
1 cup spicy BBQ sauce (I use Stubb's- awesome awesome awesome)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tbl brown sugar
1/2 white onion, sliced
1/3 up pickled jalapenos, chopped
2/3 cup chicken stock
1/2 tsp seasoning salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Place pork into crockpot. Add  onions, sugar, garlic, jalapenos, seasoning salt, and pepper. Top with BBQ sauce and chicken stock. Cook 7-8 hours on low heat. Shred and serve.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Cream Soup Free Tater Tot Casserole

I have to admit it.... I love tater tot casserole. This casserole was one of my first blogging recipes, but I felt I needed to update it from 2007. Usually, this recipe calls for a cream soup of some kind, but I decided that I could take care of that part on my own. I loved how this casserole turned out! Ron was thrilled to have tater tot casserole for dinner and I loved the familiar comfort of the casserole.

Thank you for your comments of the cookies! It was funny that I did two so close together...I am not a baker. However, it was a pleasant surprise how well they turned out! Yum.... :)

Ron is on the Old Glory Honor Flight today bringing Wisconsin veterans to see their Washington D.C. memorials. I am so proud of his commitment to this organization.

1 1/4 lb lean ground beef
1 package frozen mixed vegetables
2/3 cup chicken stock
1/4 cup gluten free flour
1/4 cup milk
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3 1/2 cups tater tots
salt, pepper & seasoning salt to taste

Brown beef in a large skillet over medium. Drain. Add vegetables and stir. Add stock and milk to beef and sprinkle flour on top. Mix well and allow the beef to simmer for 5-7 minutes, or until the broth thickens and reduces. Season with salt, pepper, and seasoning salt. Pre-heat the oven to 350. Spread the beef into a casserole dish and top with cheddar cheese. Evenly place tater tots on top of the casserole. Bake for 30 minutes or until sides are hot and bubbly.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Crazy Cooking Challenge: Chewy Red Velvet Cookies- From Scratch!

This is my first time participating in the Crazy Cooking Challenge!


The theme for this month is "Chocolate Chip Cookies".  The rules are simple: You MUST bake and post a NEW recipe found somewhere on a blog. This can NOT be an old recipe you’ve previously posted. Easy enough right? I thought so! I search for a unique recipe that would capture the theme of the challenge. I came across these red velvet cookies at How Sweet It Is. They were just what I was looking for! The recipe was easy to modify, and tasted fantastic! I am sure we will be making these again- knowing my husband they will not last long. Check out the other challenge recipe by joining the blog hope below!

Red Velvet Chocolate Chip Cookies
makes 12-15 cookies
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour (I used gluten-free mix- Pamela's)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon red food coloring
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375.
Cream butter and sugars together until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and combine until smooth. Beat in red food coloring. Stir in cocoa, flour, baking soda and salt until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
Using an ice cream scoop, scoop out 1-2 tablespoons of dough and set on baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Recipe Swap: Pumpkin Butterscotch and Chocolate Chip Cookies

This recipe swap theme was apple & pumpkin. I was assigned Pumpkin Butterscotch and Chocolate Chip Cookies from Tyler's Taste Tests. I love pumpkin cookies and was excited about the twist of butterscotch. Baking can be a challenge in our house because Ron does not eat wheat, but loves treats. This was a easy recipe to modify, and the taste was great! These aren't your average chewy cookies. They are light an fluffy while having a rich pumpkin taste. If you can't tell I am a happy camper about this recipe find! Check out A Taste of Home Cooking to see more recipes from the swap!

2 cups all-purpose flour (I used gluten-free mix from Pamela's)
1.5 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 up chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 325ยบ. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper to help keep the bottoms from browning or burning. Ina small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon; whisk to blend. In a bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar and eggs. Beat on medium-high speed until smooth and light in color, about 1 minute. Blend in the oil, pumpkin puree, and vanilla extract until well combined. With the mixer on a low speed, mix in the dry ingredients until just incorporated. Fold in the butterscotch and chocolate chips with a spatula.

Drop mounds of dough onto the baking sheets, spacing them a few inches apart. Bake, rotating the sheet halfway through, until the tops feel set and a toothpick or fork comes out dry, about 14-16 minutes. Allow to cool on the baking sheets for 5-10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Eat right away or store in an airtight container.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Red Chicken Chili

I love traditional chili, but sometimes it's fun to switch up an old favorite. This is an easy recipe I came up with to use some of the dried beans hiding out in our pantry. The result was delicious! Flavors of a traditional chili, but with juicy chicken and yummy beans. A little fresh cilantro and sour cream creates a perfect dinner.
On another note, the home inspection went great today! We can't wait to move, but are feeling the pressure of packing everything up. However, I think things will go great for us- the cats are a different story. Anyone have good suggestions and experiences in moving change hating pets??

1 lb great northern beans
1 1/2 lb chicken breasts
8 cups chicken stock
14 1/2 oz fire roasted diced tomatoes, drained
4 oz died green chilies
1 onion, diced
1 green pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, diced
2 1/2 Tbl chili powder
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
Chopped Cilantro
Sour Cream

Sort and soak beans according to package directions.

When beans are finished, boil chicken breasts till they are completely cooked. Remove from pot and shred with a fork.

Add all ingredients to a large crockpot. Set temperature to low and cook 8-10 hours or until beans are soft.  Serve and garnish with cilantro and sour cream.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Homemade Hashbrowns

I love hasbrowns with a nice runny egg for breakfast. Perhaps a bloody mary on the side? Ron and I had a few extra baked potatoes from dinner and decided that homemade hashbrowns were in order! Hashbrowns are super easy to make and sooooo much better than the their frozen bagged cousins- also a great way to use up extra potatoes!

On another note, we got the house!!!!! We are so excited! Closing day is November 5th- lots and lots to do!

Great weekend in Wisconsin! How about those Packers (Brewers and Badgers too)!?
2 large leftover baked potatoes
2 Tbl butter
1 Tbl olive oil
Salt & Pepper to taste

Use a vegetable peeler or knife to peel potatoes. Cut potatoes in half and grate with a cheese grater.

Heat butter and oil in a skillet on medium heat. When butter has melted, add the potatoes. Cook till potatoes brown on one side. Flip and brown on opposite side. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with eggs and your favorite breakfast meat.