Thursday, February 26, 2009

BBQ Ribs

This has to be Steve's favorite, hands down. It's super easy 'cause it's made in the crock pot. And it makes your house smell so yummy!

1-1.5 lbs country style ribs (you can use boneless or bone-in. I like boneless.)
*if you go to 2lbs, double the sauce
1 C tomato sauce (you can substitute Ketchup)
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 C brown sugar
1/2 C honey
1/4 C spicy brown mustard
2 Tbs Worcestershire Sauce
1/2 tsp Liquid Smoke
2 C cooked rice

Cook ribs for 4+ hours on high. Drain and add all the remaining ingredients. Turn the ribs to coat in the sauce. Cook for another couple of hours on low. Serve over rice. I would say the "secret ingredient" is the Liquid smoke, it's just not same same with out it. A great side dish for this is cornbread. I have a great recipe for that too! We'll save that for another day.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

2 New Recipes

I have two recipes for you today. One is from dinner last night and the other one is from TK, enjoy!

Chicken Casserole

This one is a staple in our house. I ALWAYS have the basics for this one. I sometimes have a little extra stuff to put in and other times a little less. So basically it turns our different every time. Here's what I did last night and it was darn good.

2-3 chicken breasts
2 cups cooked rice
1 can cream of chicken, or mushroom, whatever yo ulike
1/2 can of milk
10 Ritz crackers
1/4 C melted butter, maybe a little less, I just used whatever was left of the stick

1. Start the rice cooking
2. Brown and dice chicken
3. Combine soup and milk in a 9x9 baking dish
4. Combine chicken and rice in baking dish and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
5. Crumble crackers and sprinkle over teh top. Drizzle melted butter on crumbs.
6. Bake at 350 for 35-40 mins.

TK's Salad

As sophisticated and refined as you think you pallet is I can guarantee it's nothing compared to my three year old. He created a dish last night that is out of this world. Salad with Ranch dressing, sprinkled with Kix. Although he usually loves salad he decided the Kix dipped in Ranch was way better than the salad itself. I guess it's a good thing the Marshmallow Mateys weren't on the counter.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Who doesn't love pizza? It's so versatile. You can top it with whatever you want. This is for the crust. You should feel pretty special because I'm pretty tight lipped about this one. My BFF Mark developed this recipe from lots of trial and error. It can be made by hand or with a mixer, such as a Bosch (I heart my Bosch). I love this recipe, I'm all about eating the foods I love but I love more knowing the quality of ingredients that goes into my food. This is also WAY cheaper than even buying a $5 pizza.

2 C hot water
2 Tbs yeast
2 Tbs Italian seasoning
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
4+ C flour

1. Combine water and yeast in mixing bowl and let sit while you combine Italian seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and sugar.
2. If doing this by hand place 2 cups of flour in a sifter with seasonings on top, sift into yeast mixture. If using a mixer just dump it all and turn on the mixer.
3. After a slurry is made add two more cups of flour, again if doing this by hand use a sifter, it makes it easier to mix. This will take a little arm strength, but it's worth it.
4. Mix dough until no linger sticky, you may have to add up to a cup more flour
5. Cover and let rise for about 30 mins. I set it on top of my stove that is preheating.
6. Divide dough into two equal parts. Sprinkle work surface and rolling pin with flour. Roll out and top with sauce, cheese and toppings of your liking. Cook at 400 for 14 mins.

* A few tips: Sprinkle cooking pan with cornmeal to prevent sticking. You can leave out the seasonings just be sure to still add the salt and sugar. I usually make one pizza and use the other dough for bread sticks.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Spinach, Chicken and Cheese Goodness

As we all know Steve and vegetables do not get a long, it must have been a name calling fight (and he says girls have drama). I happen to have a very good relationship with them. I especially love spinach. I think it's cause I watched a lot of Popeye when I was little. Whether or not Steve wants to admit it I could beat him up :) This is a dish I got from a cooking contest in my last ward. I have made a few changes and it's become one of my favorites. Although Steve will eat it he often leaves a pile of luscious green on his plate.

2-3 Chicken breasts cooked, seasoned and cubed
1 lb frozen spinach, fresh works too
2 cups mozzarella or monetary cheese shredded or cubed (any white cheese that melts)
2-3 cups cooked rice

1. Cook chicken in a large skillet with generous seasoning. When done remove from pan and cube.
2. If using frozen spinach thaw in the microwave for 5 mins. Squeeze in a kitchen towel to remove excess water.
3. Combine chicken and spinach in the skillet and heat til warmed through.
4. Add cheese a handful at a time. Stir until it starts to melt, add the next handful.
5. Serve over rice.


We love this one. It's so versatile and works for breakfast or dinner. I usually have all the stuff I need on hand so it's a good back up. You would never think of eggs being good reheated but it really is.

2-4 oz of meat diced (6 slices of bacon cooked and crumbled)
*left over lunch meat works really well in this
12 oz can evaporated milk
3 eggs
1 1/2 C shredded cheese
1 tsp salt
1 Tbs flour
dash of Tabasco
pepper to taste

1. Mix eggs, milk, salt, pepper and Tabasco.
2.Put cheese in bottom of a 9 in pie plate. Toss the cheese with the flour.
3. Sprinkle meat on cheese.
4. Pour egg mixture on top. Place the pie pan on a cookie sheet to cook, just in case it bubbles.
5. Bake at 350 in lower 1/3 of the oven for 30-35 mins, or until lightly browned. This is another one that does best when it's allowed to sit for a couple minutes before digging in.

*Some of our favorite combinations are ham and swiss and bacon and cheddar.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Oven Fries

This is one of Steve's all time favorites. Every year for his birthday he asks for my fries and inside-out burgers. Thank goodness potatoes have a little bit of nutrition. Just don't tell Steve they ever grew in the ground :)
I am a big fan of the 'ol Golden arches myself. This is a way healthier alternative and it's easy. However I have offered them to my kids instead of McDonald's and I was shot down :( Maybe there is too much of Steve in them, they defiantly don't look like him ;)

4 Med. Potatoes washed and cut into fry shape
*You can skin them if you want but I keep them on for an extra vitamin boost (shhh!)
Oil for drizzling
Seasoning of your choice. I like Cavenders and salt.

Preheat oven to 400. Spread potatoes on a cookie sheet, drizzle with olive or vegetable oil, toss to coat all the fries. Cook at 400 for 30 mins. I find this is the perfect temp and time for them to be crispy on the outside and mash potatoey on the inside. You can season before or after cooking. I do it after. And unlike fries that are deep fried and full of trans fat these taste good reheated.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Mare's Lasagna

Steve loves Lasagna. I have followed a few recipes over the years and now I just kind of guess and throw it all together. This is what I did this time and it was delicious.

8 lasagna noodles cooked and drained
1 onion chopped
1 lb hamburger
1 qt spaghetti sauce
2 cups mozzarella
1 container ricotta
1 egg

1. Heat a tbs oil in a large skillet and add onion, cook till translucent.
2. Add hamburger and cook til no longer pink.
3. Add spaghetti sauce to meat mixture and allow to simmer while noodles cook.
4. Add egg to ricotta and stir til combined.
5. Assembly. Spoon some sauce on the bottom of a 9x13 to prevent sticking.Layer noodles. Then dot ricotta and sprinkle cheese. Add half of the sauce on top of cheese. Add another layer of noodles, ricotta, cheese and put the rest of the sauce on top. Spread to evenly cover top.
6. Cook at 350 for 45 mins.

*Here's a little secret to keep the lasagna from falling apart when you serve it, let it rest for 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Hamburger Bisquick Roll

I love this recipe. It looks like it's super hard but it's pretty stinkin' easy. I think it's a great alternative to meatloaf *wrench*.

2 1/2 C Bisquick
1lb hamburger
2 cans condensed vegetable beef soup

1. Mix Bisquick and just enough water to make a dough, a little less than a cup.

2. Roll out dough to about 11x14.

3.Mix beef and 1/2 cans of soup in a bowl. Spread beef mixture over the dough.

4. Roll up like cinnamon rolls.

5. Cut about 2 inches and lay flat on a cookie sheet. bake at 350 for 25-30 mins or until dough begins to brown.

6. Make gravy by combining remaining soup with half a can of water. Heat on stove and spoon over the cooked rounds.

*If anyone has any suggestions for a new, fancy name for this one I'm open to suggestions. I just don't think "Hamburger Bisquick Roll" does it justice.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Shepard's Pie

This is another one of Steve's favorites, of course it's meat and potatoes. It's pretty easy and super tasty. I took this recipe from Alton Brown but my version is the poor man's version. He calls for lamb and I used ground beef.

1 lb potatoes peeled and cubed
1/4 C half and half or whole milk
2-4 tbs butter
1 egg yolk

Boil the potatoes until they are tender and mashable, but not overdone. Heat the milk and butter til warmed through, about 30 sec. Drain potatoes and start mashing. Add milk and butter mash until smooth. Stir in the yolk until well combined.

1 onion chopped
2 carrots peeled and diced
1 lb ground beef (or lamb)
2 Tbs vegetable oil
2 Tbs flour
2 Tbs tomato paste
1-2 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 C chicken broth
1/2C frozen peas
1/2 C frozen corn

While potatoes cook:
Heat oil in a large skillet. When hot add carrots and onion, let cook for about 3 minutes or until they start to take on color. Add meat and cook until brown and no pink is left. Sprinkle with flour, stir to coat. Let cook for another minute. Add tomato paste, broth, Worcestershire, and frozen veggies. Let simmer until sauce thickens, about 10 minutes. When potatoes are ready, pour the meat mixture in a 2 qt baking dish. Dollop mashed potatoes on the top and smooth over to completely cover the filling. Cook at 400 for 25 minutes or until potatoes just start to brown.

*By the way "Worcestershire" is not only impossible to say but freakin' hard to spell!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Kid's Spaghetti

This one is fast and super easy. It sounds like a weird combo but it works, I promise.

1 lb ground beef cooked and drained
1 can tomato soup
1 can cream of chicken
1-2 cups cheddar cheese
1 package spaghetti noddles cooked and drained

1. After draining meat add soups (do not dilute) and warm through.
2. after draining noodles return to pan and add warm meat/soup mixture.
3. Put in a 9x13 and top with cheese.
4. Bake 350 for 30 mins.

* You can also use chicken or ground turkey instead of beef. If you're super hungry or just impatient you can serve from the stove top and just sprinkle with cheese.

*You can also freeze the leftovers if you have way too much.