Thursday, August 25, 2011

Foodie Friday #3 -Oriental Chicken and Mexican Black Beans

Welcome to my 3rd Foodie Friday!  Hope you enjoy!

Chicken, Rice and Mexican Black Beans

Well, this week I wanted to try making these Mexican Black Beans over at A Year of Slow Cooking (Crockpot365).  They turned out pretty great -even though I substituted powdered garlic for the real thing.  And for the same amount of work, I got a large batch so I froze the rest in empty yogurt containers for another day.

I decided to do chicken and rice with it (and broccoli, but don't know why it did not make it into the picture).  I used one of my favorite fall-back chicken recipes.  I call it "Wesley's Chicken" because a good friend of mine used to make it all the time during my freshman year at BYU (his name is Wesley, in case you didn't get that). 

Wesley's Oriental Chicken:

for 4 chicken breasts:
1/4 c soy sauce
2 tbsp honey (softened in microwave)
4 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp ginger
1 clove garlic (but I always use powdered garlic)

Combine in bowl.  Marinate chicken in mixture for at least 10 minutes.  Broil on top rack of oven on high for 5-6 minutes.  Flip and broil another 5-6 minutes.  Squirt some honey on each chicken piece.  Broil 1-2 more minutes.  Flip and repeat. 

This marinade is so yummy.  I usually keep the excess and boil it in a pan on the stove for a bit and then use that as a sauce for the rice. 

That was Wednesday's dinner.  Then tonight, because I purposely cooked lots of chicken and rice, I just chopped up some carrots and the leftover broccoli, cubed the leftover chicken and threw it in a wok with some onions and canned corn and a can of cream of mushroom soup (mixed with a little milk) and made a nice stir fry type of dish to serve over the extra rice.  Yum!

Saturday, August 20, 2011


We were getting ready to have family photos taken tonight and then this morning my little man got sick!  So... we rescheduled, but I wanted to show off the headbands I made for the girls.  Acutally, I made enough so I could wear one two, but didn't get a photo yet. 

Not a very good shot of the headband (my little models were wiggly), but the model is sure cute, huh?

What do you think?

Friday, August 19, 2011

Foodie Friday #2: Oldies but Goodies

Well, sorry this is so late in the day -it could almost be considered foodie saturday.  Anyway, this week I made two "oldies", but two meals that I love (probably because they are easy).


Cheesy Tuna Noodle Casserole

Love this because it is easy and quick -and I have the recipe memorized.

4 cups cooked noodles (macaroni, penne, egg noodles, whatever you like)
2 cans cream of mushroom (or cream of chicken) soup
2 cans tuna (drained)
2/3 cup milk
1 tbsp butter or margarine
onion and garlic powder to taste (optional)
shredded cheese for top

mix everything (except cheese) together and put in a baking dish.  Sprinkle with grated cheese. Bake at 350 F for 20-30 mins.  I usually serve with corn (or other veggies)

And second...

Chocolate Chip Pancakes
...because, frankly, who doesn't love pancakes?  Oh, wait, that would be my husband!  But he was generous enough to eat leftovers that day so the rest of us could enjoy them!  Thanks, Paul!!

Even my Baby liked the pancakes (hers didn't have chocolate chips though).

1 cup flour
2 Tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup milk
1 egg, beaten
2 tbsp oil

mix dry ingredients in bowl.  mix wet ingredients in seperate bowl and add to dry mixture.  Stir til combined.  Then cook on a lightly greased griddle or frying pan.  I put some chocolate chips on after I pour them, then use a clean finger to gently push them into the batter and cover them.  Then the chocolate chips stay nice and gooey and don't burn.  Make them even more fun by making them shapes (use a spoon to put the batter on griddle instead of measuring cup). 

Happy cooking, everyone!!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Foodie Friday #1 -Chili, Corn bread and S'mores bars

Well, lately it seems I have more time to experiment in the kitchen than I do to make crafts.  So, I have decided to make Fridays "Foodie Fridays" where I will share with you all something I have done in the kitchen lately.

And now, without further adieu...

Awhile back, my husband and son went on a boys camping trip with my father-in-law, brothers-in-law and nephews on my husbands side.  Chloe, my oldest girl, was sad that she was left out (she is the only girl besides my 10 month old Hailey).  So I decided to make some "camping" foods for us too.  We had hotdogs once, but that's boring so  I'll share our other meal -chili, corn bread and s'mores bars.

The only problem is... I didn't have a camera when I made it (my husband took it to camp), so I took a picture the day they got home of the leftovers.... I did take a photo of the chili and corn bread but it seems it has been accidentally deleted... not a very good start for Foodie Fridays.  And I am a bit ashamed to admit that this was all the dessert that was left after only 2 days.

I was never a fan of chili growing up, but a year or two ago someone from church made this recipe for a potluck and I LOVED it!  I love this recipe because it is very versatile.  I don't think I have made it exactly the same twice and it is still delicious!  And ... what would be the opposite of labor-intensive?  Huh, I'm stumped.  Labor unintensive?  Anyway, you get the idea -fast, easy, stress-free.

The recipe I have is as follows:
3 lbs ground beef (browned and drained)
1 jar pasta sauce
1 jar salsa
1 can tomatoe paste
1 can mushrooms
1 can beans with maple
2 cans kidney beans
lemon pepper and chili powder to taste

I throw it all together in a crock pot on low for 6-8 hours (or on high for 1-2 hours and then to low if I don't have as much time).  Or you could cook it in a pot to heat it all up and then just keep it warm in a crockpot.  I like it to cook longer on low because I think it gets a better flavor.

Here's the versatile part:
I never buy the small jars of pasta sauce or salsa, so I just guestimate an amount from a larger jar.  Or sometimes I don't have store-bought pasta sauce on hand, and I have used canned tomatoes (either crushed or diced, blended with an immersion blender) and sometimes add spices like basil, oregano, salt, onion powder, etc.  I don't keep lemon pepper in the house -but a squirt of lemon juice and some pepper works for me.  And I don't always buy canned beans because they are more expensive here than dried.  But I have used kidney beans or black beans.  I have dried black beans that I cook in my slow cooker a bunch at a time and then freeze them in ziplock baggies for later.  To do that go here.  How's that for an easy-going, laid back recipe?  It's like I can't mess it up no matter how many things I do to it!  

Then I made some delicious corn bread in muffin tins.  Thanks to Katie from This Chick Cooks for the fabulous recipe!! 

The S'mores bars were super easy.  I just pressed chocolate chip cookie dough into a pizza pan and baked for 5-7 minutes.  Then top with coarsely crushed graham crackers, mini marshmallows and chocolate chips and bake another 5 minutes (until marshmallows start to get puffy and golden).  You can drizzle with chocolate sauce if you want -I thought that might be too sweet.  Also, I have heard of people using Golden Grahams cereal but I thought that was too sweet too.  These were delicious!

And there you have it -camping indoors! Well, the food part anyway. 
Thanks for joining me for my first ever FOODIE FRIDAY.  Hope you come again next week! 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Go Bananas!

Ok, so I have been seeing a lot of posts lately with frozen bananas and chocolate for some tasty (and healthy) snacks for kids.  Had to try some of my own.

My kids LOVE peanut butter -who doesn't? And to me the idea of peanut butter and chocolate makes my mouth water and my eyes roll back in my head. haha.  So, I decided to coat the bananas in peanut butter first and then cover them in chocolate.

You'll need some bananas (one banana makes 2 "pops"), some wooden popsicle sticks, peanut butter, melted chocolate, and sprinkles (optional).

First, peel bananas and cut in half.  Push a popsicle stick into the cut (flat) end. 
Second, spread peanut butter all over banana using a knife.

Third, spread melted chocolate all over.  You could dip it in the melted chocolate, but mine was a bit too thick so I just spread it on.  I didn't have any baking chocolate or chocolate bars handy, so I just melted chocolate chips in my microwave (if you do this, only do about 30 seconds at a time and then stir so you won't burn it). 

Sorry for all the distractions in the background -I was in a hurry.

Fourth, roll in or sprinkle on your favorite topping (chopped nuts, granola, sprinkles, coconut, etc).  Then lay on a cookie sheet (or other hard, flat surface) lined with waxed paper.  Put in the freezer.  When the chocolate is set they are ready to enjoy! Yum!

My little monkeys loved them!

Ok, so before you go... I need opinions.  I was thinking of doing "Foodie Fridays" where each Friday I put up a food related post.  Whether it's a new recipe I've tried, a fun snack for kids, cooking tips, etc.  Any thoughts? 

Linking up to:

Passionately Artistic