Category: recipes, information,


This is a super easy and relatively quick recipe for homemade bread. Its good too.:)

3 3/4 cups all purpose or bread flour

1  .25 ounce package of yeast

2 Tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

3 Tablespoons sugar

1 1/2 cup warm water

First dissolve yeast in the warm water . In separate bowl mix together 1 1/2 cups flour, salt, oil and sugar. Add the dissolved yeast water to the flour mixture. Mix together and let stand, covered tightly, for 30 mins.

Now add 1 1/2 cups flour gradually to yeast mixture, mix together by hand to form dough. Place dough on floured surface and continue to knead and fold in flour until dough is smooth and not sticking to hands.

Separate dough into 2 loaves approx. 1 lb. a piece, or you may make 6 mini loaves, they are really convenient for one or two people.  Place loaves one non stick cookie sheet and place in COLD oven for 15 min. and let rise.( Dough will continue to rise while being cooked.)

Turn oven to 425 degrees and bake for approximately 30 min  or until good and golden . 🙂

Enjoy!

Spinach and Sausage Pasta with White Sauce

 

 

For Pasta

smoked sausage halved and sliced

2 cups of fresh spinach

2 small cloves of garlic diced

¼ white onion diced

dash of coarse ground black pepper

pinch of oregano

8 oz. pasta of your choice  (linguine /penne/small shells work well)

olive oil

 

For White Sauce

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

¼ tsp. salt

1cup milk

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese (do not use the kind in the green container, lol, use real solid parmesan)

 

Begin by boiling your pasta per directions until tender, set aside

In large saucepan drizzle olive oil, and add sliced sausage garlic, onion, pepper and oregano. Now brown ingredients thoroughly over medium heat.  When browned add washed and chopped fresh spinach, it takes only a minute to incorporate into the sausage mixture. Turn heat to low as you prepare the sauce.

In medium saucepan melt butter, add flour and salt, Mix together then add milk .Mix and add your Parmesan. Stir together and heat until thickened and bubbly, add pasta to the sausage mixture and sauce, Mix together..Enjoy!

 

 

Ok this is a glorified french bread Pizza/sloppy joe type sandwich..its so yummy.

1 market style fresh baked french loaf

1 cup fresh washed spinach

1/2 cup sliced mushrooms

7 oz. fresh ground country sausage

pinch of oregano

pinch of california chili pepper

dash of corse ground black pepper

dash of garlic salt

Pizza sauce from grocery store, or you can make your own. I prefer to make my own with a small can of tomato sauce, a tsp. of oregano, garlic salt and pepper.

Ok, first brown your sausage in a pan with a tablespoon of water, add pepper,garlic salt. oregano,and chili pepper..When sausage is done add spinach and mushrooms , saute for just a couple minutes.

Cut french loaf in half and then slice horizontally so you have two flat halves, you dont need the whole loaf, only half. Brush cut sides with olive oil and a dash of garlic salt, then add tomatoe sauce mixture, cover well because the bread soaks up the sauce. lay sliced pieces of mozzarella over sauce. Next, pour over the sausage mixture and cover well, it will be a little sloppy, thats the point 🙂  Finally add a few more slices of mozzarella and bake for 10-2 minutes at 400 degrees. Enjoy!


Crustless Sausage and Spinach Quiche

Smoked Sausage (I used 3 hot dog length sausages)

1 and ½ cup fresh, cleaned Spinach

½ small onion julienned

1 cup sliced mushrooms

½ grated cheese

2 small-medium hot-house tomatoes

6 eggs

½ cup milk or cream

coarse ground black pepper

dried basil

1 tbl. butter

olive oil

Halve and slice the sausage and brown in a drizzle of olive oil, cook in large frying pan until browned. Then, add onions and mushrooms, add to this the butter and a pinch of coarse ground black pepper and basil ,and caramelize the mushrooms and onions with the sausage. Next, add the chopped spinach cook down for just a minute then add the tomatoes. You may add another pinch of pepper and basil if you like. Warm for about 2-3 minutes. Place in greased 8 X 11 casserole dish. Add to the sausage mixture the blended egg, milk and ½ the cheese. Pour egg mixture over sausage mixture and top with cheese. Bake for 30 min. @ 375 degrees, or until fork comes out clean. Enjoy!

Shop with spices in Morocco

Image via Wikipedia

Here are some quick tips for you that I have discovered and used over the years, most of these you may already know, or you may even know a better way, however, here are some things I have picked up on through the years just in case you didn’t know.

1.)  When preparing a recipe, just because you don’t have all the ingredients doesn’t mean you cant make the dish. You can modify to suit what you have on hand, get creative, lots of good recipes have come from un planned changes.  You may even discover a completely new dish that’s even better.

2.)  Mayo with olive oil has half the fat and calories of regular mayonaisse and  tastes no different. Use care when making dips however, as they may not set up as well.

3.)  Try to avoid using salt whenever possible. There are so many fantastic spices that you can use instead of salt, that taste so wonderful. Really explore the world of spices, find combinations that you like and substitute them for salt. Its much ,much better for you. I realize spices are very expensive, but you can find comparable products in Dollar stores, 99 cent stores, etc. They have 90% of the same spices as you will find in an expensive store, for 80% of the price. Usually $1.00 a piece. That’s a good deal.

4.)  Presentation is a nice touch to any meal. You can make a delicious meal even more appealing by presenting it in a way that is pleasing to the consumer.

5.)  Always have all your ingredients out and pre measured or ready to be measured. It saves lots of time and keeps the mess down. Also have one bag or bowl on hand to collect the ends of veggies, empty shells, etc., instead of making a bunch of trips to the trashcan. I like to use the plastic garbage sacs from the grocery store. I peel potatoes etc. into the bag and discard the whole thing neatly when I am done, no mess and recycled the bag.

6.)  Coarse ground black pepper is much better to cook with than regular ground black pepper.

7.)  When cooking fried chicken on the stove, make sure you have enough oil for the chicken to float freely without touching the bottom of the pan or each other, it makes for a much prettier and tastier crust.

8.)  Veggies can add a huge amount of color to the meal, so use them generously. I also know Veggies can be high and out of season at the grocery stores and markets. Take advantage of sales and specials and create your meal based on the best deal. Now don’t buy something you aren’t going to eat, it isn’t a good deal if you waste it anyway. Only buy what you know you are going to eat and eat the healthiest versions of it. It’s the best thing to do if you are on a tight budget and still want to be as healthy as you can with the means you have.

9.)  If you are able and have the space, I suggest you plant a garden. This is a huge money saver and it’s the healthiest food you can get. It is an investment in your time so only plant what you can manage and what you will use. A garden can be very rewarding both physically and mentally.

10.)  Canned tuna in water, and canned 98% fat free chicken breast are excellent sources of protein and perfect for a quick snack or lunch. Use them on crackers, salads, or just plain. They are a little high in sodium, but not enough to negate the benefit of the protein. As long as you are eating it in combination with other natural foods it is fine.

These are just a few tips I have learned and thought I would share. I will be posting more here and there in the blog..Enjoy!

Pot Roast

Another recipe from my super funny and fabulous best friend. This is her easy crock pot roast recipe…Enjoy!

Easy Pot Roast in the Crock Pot

Did I say I love my crock pot? Well, I DO!!! This is another easy recipe that you toss the ingredients in and get back to doing funner things than cooking.

2-3 pound beef roast ( I used boneless beef chuck I got on sale)

4-5 potatoes, cut into bite sized pieces

3 carrots chopped up into bite sized pieces, or just be like me and throw in whole baby carrots because chopping is boring

1 packet of onion soup mix

1 can of cream of mushroom soup

2 cups of water.

Put potatoes in first, then add your pot roast, add your soup, the water, the onion soup packet. Turn on low for 8-10 hours or high for 5-6 hours.

Red Chili Peppers

Image by Gerard's World via Flickr

Chicharrones with Red Chile and Coleslaw

Red Chile:

Ingredients –  Dry Red Chile Pods, Garlic, Flour & Water

Directions – Clean chile pods by running under warm water, make sure to get the seeds out. Put pods in a blender (NOTE: The chile will stain your blender) and fill with hot water just enough to cover the pods. Add garlic cloves (I like a lot, add to taste). Pulse for about a minute and then blend until completely blended (you should see no skin from the chile), this takes some time.

At this point you can freeze the chile to use at a later date or you can continue the process if you plan on cooking with it right away.

In a pot brown about 1 tablespoon of flour with Crisco/Oil. Add the Red Chile and simmer over low heat for about 30 minutes. You can also add Flour mixed with water if need be to thicken.

Chicharrones:

Ingredients: Boneless Pork Chops, Crisco, Salt & Pepper

Cut pork chops into small square pieces. Warm Crisco (you don’t want to use too much Crisco, the point is for the pork to brown) in a large frying pan. Add Pork and fry turning frequently until golden brown. Salt and Pepper while frying. I like mine crispy.

Warm Tortillas in a frying pan. Serve Chicharrones on Tortilla or with a Tortilla and serve with red chile.

Cole Slaw:

Ingredients –  4 Cups Shredded Cabbage, 1/2 Cup Chopped Red Pepper, 2 Tablespoons Tarragon Vinegar, 1/2 Miracle Whip/ Mayo (personal preference, I use Mayo and just add a little Miracle Whip), 1 teaspoon Prepared Mustard, 2 Tablespoons Sugar and 1 teaspoon Salt.

Directions: Combine vegetables, sugar, salt, celery seed and pepper. Combine vinegar, mustard, and salad dressing. Add to vegetables and mix thoroughly. Makes 6 servings.

Author: Marci Romero

Chili Festival Oct 2010

Image by Gene1138 via Flickr



Ingredients

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Slowly cook and stir the onion until tender. Mix in the garlic, jalapeno, green chile peppers, cumin, oregano and cayenne. Continue to cook and stir the mixture until tender, about 3 minutes. Mix in the chicken broth, chicken and white beans. Simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Remove the mixture from heat. Slowly stir in the cheese until melted. Sprinke with cilantro and crushed tortilla chips. this is modified from Cathy’s recipe at allrecipe.com

Author: Jen Paterchak

Around 200 varieties of Peruvian potatoes were...

Image via Wikipedia

Baked Potato Skins w/ Creamy Spinach & Turkey Bacon

Ingredients:

3 small potatoes, baked, sliced in half and cooled
1 spray(s) cooking spray
20 oz chopped frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
4 oz light cream cheese, at room temperature
1/4 tsp table salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
3 slice(s) cooked crisp turkey bacon, crumbled

Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Scoop out flesh of potatoes, leaving about 1/4 of potato flesh in potato. (Note: Reserve remaining potato flesh for another use such as mashed potatoes.)
2. Place potato halves on a baking sheet and coat with cooking spray. Bake until lightly browned, about 15 minutes.
3. While potato skins bake, combine spinach, cream cheese, salt and pepper in a medium bowl until well-blended.
4. Remove skins from oven and spoon about 3 tablespoons of spinach mixture into each potato half; bake until warmed through, about 5 minutes more.
5. Remove skins from oven and top each half with about 1 tablespoon of crumbled bacon.

 

Author: Amanda Rhine

Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Image by Old Shoe Woman via Flickr

Artichoke & Spinach Dip Restaurant Style

Ingredients

Directions

  1. In a crock pot, mix all ingredients thoroughly.
  2. Cook on medium for about 2 hours or until cheeses are melted and bubbly.

Notes

This recipe is modified from one that I found on allrecipes.com.  I modified to cook in crock pot instead of oven.  I won 1st prize in a crock pot contest at work.  Everyone loved it!

Author Jen Paterchak