So yesterday I spent the day demolishing my deck for the new one I am starting to build in a few weeks. It was supposed to rain by noon, so my plan was to work outside until the rain started then move inside for work on the blog. Well the rain didn’t start until after 6:00 pm. So I kept working on the deck until 5:30. No blog work, but I still needed to make dinner.
Sunday I had taken some chicken out of the freezer to use this week. I also had cauliflower, mushrooms and fresh corn, that were needing to be cooked, before they found their way to the trash bin. What I came up with was this fairly healthy simple chicken casserole. This is a quick and easy recipe which allows you to substitute whatever items you have in the fridge that are on their last legs.
Makes great leftovers for lunch the next day. Trust me I just had it for lunch.
My kids loved this and didn’t even notice the smashed cauliflower for the bottom crust. Smashed cauliflower adds a nutritious nice flavor to the dish.
Continue reading Chicken Under a Biscuit Casserole
I’m not sure what it is but I’ve had little desire to cook this week. Maybe it’s because my girls are at camp and I have been at baseball every night with my son. Last night I was home but my son was out and my wife spent the evening getting her hair done. Still nothing. Father’s Day was spent on the road dropping the kids off at camp so we just picked up some ribs from the local market. I threw them on the grill with a salad. That is the most cooking I’ve done all week.
If you are lucky enough to send your kids to a good summer camp, it is well worth it. Our kids have attended Springhill christian camps for years. They have a location in Seymour, IN and Evart, MI. It is your typical summer camp with horseback riding, lake activities, and zip lines. My summer camps never had zip lines! They have a blast, in a very loving environment. They get back in a couple of days so maybe I will get my enthusiasm back for cooking. We miss them very much, but happy they can have this time away to grow and learn.
A few weeks back I made one of my kids favorites. Wet Burritos. If you have never had wet burritos you and your family are in for a treat. I cooked this for the blog and made a double batch to freeze the second batch. They freeze great.. Since I am not cooking this week, I grabbed the second batch from the freezer for dinner. Always great to have extra meals frozen and ready to go..
Continue reading Wet Burritos
This weekend is the unofficial start of Summer. As I sit here at my desk it is a balmy 42°F outside. I know our community plans to open the pool on Friday. I think my swim trunks will stay in the closet. Trust me that is good news for everyone.
Many people have cookouts planned for this weekend. My Cornbread Salad recipe is a great easy dish to bring to your cookout or potluck. It is amazing how well the cornbread mixes in with this layered salad. People might look at you funny when you tell them the name but not after tasting it. Add jalapeno if you would like it a little more spicy.
Continue reading Cornbread Salad
My family loves anything buffalo. They also love lasagna. This is my “mashup” of the two. A little spicy, easy to make and very yummy.
As with all my recipes I try to make them easy and convenient as possible. For the chicken I bought two packages of bone-in chicken breasts. Season the chicken with salt, pepper and a little blackened seasoning. Bake for 40 minutes at 350°. To make the recipe even easier you could substitute a rotisserie chicken from the store.
Continue reading Buffalo Chicken Lasagna
In honor of Mothers Day this post is dedicated to my mother, Shelby. My mother is one of the strongest women I know. She grew up in Eastern Kentucky with 11 siblings and married at the young age of 18. She moved to Ohio with my dad where she trained and worked as mom a beautician. Unfortunately she started going blind from Retinitis Pigmentosa a progressive retinal disease. Because of the increasing loss of her vision, she was forced to quit work in her late 20’s and stopped driving by mid 30’s.
My mother did the majority of the raising of me and my sister, even though she was going blind. My dad’s job required him to work swing shifts, which disrupted his parenting time. Mom was there for everything.
My father developed heart problems in his 40’s. My dad passed away 2 years ago at the age of 81. They were married 58 years. Mom, even though she is completely blind now, has always been very independent. When I was young she showed me that you cannot let a disability hold you back. She continued to cook, clean, exercise and stay active at her church and does so even today. Since dad passed away she has now moved in with my family. This was extremely hard on her because the home she was leaving was designed and built by her and where she lived for almost 40 years. The house was beautiful and situated on five wooded, rolling acres. But living by herself proved to much for her and I.
Knowing how independent she is we decided to build a complete apartment in our basement. The apartment allows her to keep her independence with my family being there to help her as needed. She has her own kitchen, washer-dryer and a walkout. I’m lucky to be able to have her live with us and allow my to kids to know her better.
In November, as she was getting used to her new home, (this is not easy when you are blind) she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She never gets a break. She has completed chemo and is going through radiation. Like all the trials in her life she faced it head on with God’s help. Her prognosis is good and God willing we will have mom with us for a long time. Happy Mothers Day Mom. We love you.
This is a great twist on chicken salad. I like the added flavor grilling the chicken adds. You could use baked, rotisserie or boiled chicken if you like. I also added guacamole to the dressing. It adds a nice touch to the finished dish, especially with the addition of the cilantro. This will go great for Mother’s Day brunch. I also added the grilling part to entice husbands and son’s to make this recipe for their wives and mothers. Easy, simple and looks great.
Continue reading Grilled Chicken Salad
I love my slow cooker. I usually use it twice a week. I plan on posting a new crock pot recipe each week. If you have a favorite recipe you would like converted to be cooked in the crock pot, let me know and I will give it a shot.
Here are some great crock pot tips from crock-pot.com
How do I prevent meat from drying out?
- To prevent poultry from drying out, use chicken thighs—they have more fat and won’t dry out as quickly, Cook thighs for about six hours and breasts for a maximum of five hours on low heat. Beef, depending on the cut, is much more forgiving. For better results, use stewing beef, short ribs, or brisket as opposed to a rib steak or a sirloin.
How much liquid should I use?
Continue reading Crock Pot Tips and Tricks
Last week we had rain almost everyday. This makes it hard to plan dinners, because we do not know if practice’s will be canceled until the last-minute. Always fun! We made up for it this weekend with over 20 hours spent at the fields watching the kids play.
My kids love Alfredo sauce, but it is so so fattening. I created this recipe last week using convenient items which I mostly had in my pantry. I just picked up the Bertolli Reduced Fat Alfredo sauce and a chicken from the store. This dish is much lower in fat and is a one skillet dish, that is quick and easy, your kids will love. The artichokes and mushrooms are optional, but adds great flavor to the recipe.
This recipe also takes advantage of using store bought rotisserie chicken to make it an even easier weeknight meal.
30 minutes or less.
Continue reading Quick Reduced Fat Chicken Alfredo
Crab Deviled Eggs
Over the past few weeks I have been experimenting with a crab salad recipe using imitation crab meat. I usually made this on Friday because typically that is my day off from cooking and crab salad really isn’t cooking.
I really wasn’t planning on blogging the recipe but the family loved it, especially when I added hard-boiled eggs to the recipe. My family loves egg salad and the combination of the two tasted awesome.
I was trying to decide on what I was going to post for my Easter menu when I realized this new crab/egg salad recipe would make a great filling for deviled eggs. My family loves deviled eggs but we usually only have them on holidays.
I try to lighten the recipe using low-fat mayo. You can use real crab if you want, but the imitation crab works fine for this type of dish and is definitely more economical.
Great as salad if you do not want to stuff the eggs. Serve over lettuce or with crackers.
I hope you enjoy and have a Happy Easter!!
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Continue reading CRAB DEVILED EGGS RECIPE
In honor of St Patrick’s Day and the fact that winter seems to finally be leaving, I made my version of Irish or Guinness Stew. This is a traditional stew except for the addition of sweet potatoes. It is a subtle change, adds a little sweetness to the dish and a few more vitamins. If you want to serve this on St Patrick’s Day you could use the crock pot version at the end of this blog.
Continue reading Guinness Irish Stew