a cooking blog from one foodie to another... I rarely if ever use real measurements... my recipes are more like guidelines... but along the way we usually land on something kinda delectable...

Monday, December 5, 2011

Tres Leches Latte

Mkay so yesterday we celebrated Christmas with John's daughters. We did a Mexican-themed Christmas and while it was a TON of cooking it was DIVINE!  As I started making salsa, I remembered this Tres Leches cake I made for a Cuban themed dinner with Christina and Matt... I wondered Could I turn Tres Leches into an espresso???  Well I could... I did... and OH MYLANTA! I think this may be my favorite espresso EVER! Not too sweet... but just sweet enough AMAZING!

I don't have a picture, but here is the recipe:

Tres Leches Latte

To make the syrup I mixed:

1 can of evaporated milk
1 can of condensed sweetened milk
1 cup of heavy cream

I put a SWOOSH full of syrup (that's the technical term)... (filled a regular coffee cup about and inch "ish" with the tres leches syrup)... added a half a coffee cup of steamed milk and 2 shots of espresso.

YUMMY!  You should try it!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Check it out!

Guess what??? Yesterday I was the Post of the Day at Food4um.com... I guess I'm famous now???  Woohoo!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Slow Cooker Hot Caramel Apples

[I'm reposting this because when I made it yesterday, I took a bunch of pics.  If you try only ONE recipe from this site... you should try THIS! It is the BEST fall dessert!  YUMS.]

Mkay... I gotta fulfill a couple of requests to post recipes... Here's the first request.... the Hot Caramel Apples.  I can't even remember where I found this recipe... I think a Taste of Home magazine.  Regardless...  it is a Fall favorite in the Kastner household.

Hot Caramel Apples

4 large tart apples, cored
1/2 cup apple juice
8 Tbsp brown sugar
12 red hots
4 Tbsp butter
8 caramels
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Vanilla ice cream
whipped cream

Peel 3/4" off top of apples. Pour juice over apples.

Fill each apple with 2 Tbsp brown sugar, 3 red hots,

1 Tbsp butter, two caramels.

Sprinkle apples with cinnamon.  Cook 4 - 6 hours on low in slow cooker.  Serve over vanilla ice cream; top with whip cream.

Friday, October 14, 2011

White Chili

By request of the lovely Amanda Starkweather:

Years ago I came up with this recipe after falling in love with Tumbleweed's White Chili (idk if Tumbleweed even exists anymore... does it???) I searched through recipes, tweaking and trying, until we settled on this one. We LOVE it!  (Apparently Amanda does too...)

White Chili

2 to 3 cups cooked chicken breast, cut or shredded
6 cups chicken broth
2 cloves garlic
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. white pepper
1 tsp. oregano
2 cans of chiles
3 cups navy beans (or great northern beans)
1 cup onion

Toss this hodgepodge in a BIG pot and simmer away.

[We garnish with sour cream, cheddar jack cheese and crushed tortilla chips.]

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Apple Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

I'm SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO excited! We have a guest blogger!!!  Let me introduce the lovely, the talented:

Amanda Gean Starkweather (nee Kastner) 

Sorry boys! as you can see... she's TAKEN!
My step-daughter is quite the foodie with STRONG tendencies toward the gourmet.  OHMIGOSH! You shoulda tasted the mac & cheese she brought to T-giving!  Maybe I will convince her to guest blog again and we'll post that one too.

Today she is sharing with my blog community Apple Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting... I haven't tasted them yet but just the name makes me drool!

Apple Cupcakes

2 large apples, chopped (I used four JONATHAN apples because mine were pretty small)

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease 12 muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.
Place apples and water in a medium pot; bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cook until softened, 15 to 25 minutes. Transfer apples, using a slotted spoon, to a food processor; puree until smooth. Set aside.
Cream butter and sugar together in a large bowl until fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Add apple puree and vanilla; beat until smooth.
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, salt and baking soda. Stir flour mixture into butter mixture, slowly beating to incorporate, until just combined.
Spoon into prepared muffin cups. Bake until tops are springy to the touch, 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. (I didn't have a wire rack, how many people do?!?! So I used a pizza pan.)

These are SUPER dense cupcakes. They are not light and fluffy like store bought cupcake mix. Very filling!

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

I have to admit; I had Betty Crocker Cream Cheese frosting on hand and decided to mix in some ground cinnamon. I am SURE there are more wonderful recipes for this, but I used what I had at home and "cheated" that way. The cupcakes were enough work! ;)

They turned out pretty darn good and are a prefect fall treat.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Gourmet Saturday

We started something new today -- Gourmet Saturday. We were inspired by watching some Hell's Kitchen. Everyone kept wondering, "What is Beef Wellington?" Which was when we decided.... Saturday's should be our attempt at Gourmet.  Here's the menu for our first Gourmet Saturday (recipes will be separate links).

Appetizer: Mushroom Risotto

Espresso Brownie Sundaes

We added espresso to our regular brownies. Made a sundae out of them.

Brew 2 shots of espresso with the coffee grounds for 4 shots. Add espresso to this recipe. Serve topped with ice cream, hot fudge and whipped cream.

Beef Wellington, Roasted Asparagus and Boiled New Potatoes

I tried Simply Recipes version of Beef Wellington. It did not turn out very well. It tasted okay GREAT, but the bottom didn't get crispy. The juices made it all mushy.

Beef Wellington
(we used egg whites instead of egg yolks)

Roasted Asparagus

Toss asparagus in olive oil
Season with salt and pepper

Roast at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.

Boiled New Potates 
(all we did was boil new potatoes... smother them in butter... and eat)

Mushroom Risotto

This is Jami's version of risotto... it is EASY because I don't enjoy hard.

Mushroom Risotto

1 lb. fresh mushrooms
4 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp EVOO
salt & pepper
garlic powder
3 tsp. chicken bouillon granules
3 cups water
2 cups minute rice
1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus some to garnish

Saute mushrooms in butter and EVOO; season them with salt, pepper and garlic powder.
Add water, chicken bouillon, water and rice. Bring to a boil.
Boil until all liquid is absorbed, stirring constantly to avoid rice sticking to the pan.
When all of the liquid is almost absorbed, sprinkle cheese into rice and mix it in.
Serve garnished with more Parmesan.

Quick chickeny noodle soup....

It's a chilly fall day. My sinuses are making me MISERABLE and my Aunt... well she's FREEZING anytime it dips below 85 degrees.  Didn't have any condensed soup or box mixes... So I made up my own from my pantry staples. Tasty! Quick! and WARM!

Quick Chickeny Noodle Soup

1 Tbsp. chicken bouillon granules
3 cups filtered water (I'm a little OCD about my water filtering)
dash of garlic
dash of celery salt
(woulda added a dash of parsley but couldn't find it in my spice cabinet... I have GOT to get an organizational system for that!)
2 - 3 handfuls of wide egg noodles

Brought the bouillon, water and seasonings to a boil. Tossed in handfuls of egg noodles. Boiled for 8 minutes. Served it. Yummy! Piping hot! and opening up my sinuses as we speak!


Thursday, September 22, 2011

my life as a lesson: I need a computer geek...

my life as a lesson: I need a computer geek...: This post is atypical for my site... It is a help wanted ad. I need a computer geek BAD. WANTED : Computer Geek Experience : none necessar...

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Easy Pumpkin Spice Latte

Kayla Danielle Stewart, this one's for you!

I easied up my pumpkin spice latte a little (with plans to simplified it even more next time).  Here's step 1 to easier:

1 cup milk
3 Tbsp canned pumpkin
4 Tbsp vanilla syrup
1/4 tsp pumpin pie spice

whisk it together; microwave for 3 min.

Add 2 shots of espresso to the milk mixture. top with whip cream and a sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice; VOILA! you're done.

My next experiment: make pumpkin spice syrup. gonna add pumpkin to the vanilla syrup and see if it keeps that way or not.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Pumpkin Chip Muffins

I'm having the weirdest sense of deja vu about this post. I SWEAR! Pumpkin Chip Muffins SHOULD be on this blog!  I mean we LOVE Pumpkin Chip Muffins! We make them ALL the time! Yet I can't find that I've posted them before... so here goes... It's what's cooking (or baking) in the Kastners' Kitchen tonight:

Pumpkin Chip Muffins

4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 can pumpkin
1 1/2 cups canola oil
3 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp salt
2 cups chocolate chips

***Beat eggs, sugar, pumpkin and oil.
***(separate bowl)  Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
***Add dry mixture to wet. Mix until combined.
***Fold in chocolate chips.
***Fill muffin tins; bake at 400 for 16 - 20 minutes.


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Vanilla Syrup

All the recipes I found were 1 part sugar 1 part water and that was TOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO sugary for me.  Here's my recipe.

Vanilla Syrup

3/4 cup sugar
1 cup water
1 Tbsp. vanilla

Bring to a boil until it turns syruppy (not a real word.. I KNOW!).  Store in fridge.

Pumpkin Spice Latte

Ever since Tracey Jenkins gave me an espresso machine for my birthday (ya... she knows me a little bit) I have been striving to copy my favorite Starbucks recipes. (That's what you do when you live 40 minutes from the closest Starbucks.  It helps the wallet too :) )  So I FINALLY hit on a copycat pumpkin spice latte... MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!  It is REALLY turning my foul mood around today!

Pumpkin Spice Latte

1 cup milk
3 Tbsp. canned pumpkin
4 Tbsp. vanilla syrup
1/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
2 shots espresso
whip cream
sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice

Whisk milk and pumpkin in a saucepan over medium heat (I'm impatient so I used high heat and it was fine.)
Add vanilla syrup and pumpkin pie spice.
Heat until the milk develops foam on top whisking the entire time.
Brew espresso.
Pour milk mixture into your cup.
Add espresso and stir it together.
Cover with whip cream.
Dust with pumpkin pie spice.

VOILA! You just saved yourself $5!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Soup Week Day 3, 4, & 5

BAH!  So sorry these posts are woefully behind!  Been busy homeschooling and writing and reference checking... did NOT have time this week!  But soup week is still going strong!

Day 3:  Wild Creamy Chicken Soup (I KNOW we just had it but the kids wanted it on the menu for soup week so there you go)

Day 4:  Becky's Soup (a crowd FAVORITE... too bad my baby sis doesn't live closer)

Day 5: Loaded Baked Potato Soup (Jiminey Cricket!  That stuff is GOOD!) As always, we tweaked the recipe... instead of microwaving the potatoes, we cooked them in the chicken broth. Also we quintupled it (the neighbor kids ate here!!!! and I had a full batch of leftovers...). Used more bacon and cheddar than called for. mmmmmm I think that is it.

G'night all!  I'll post more soup tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Soup Week Day 2

Souper Rice

We LOVE souper rice!!!

1 BIG can cream of mushroom soup
1 can full of minute rice
1 can full of milk

microwave for 6 minutes on high

Monday, September 5, 2011

Soup Week Day 1

One day last week when I was checking out Weather Bug, I realized it was gonna be CHILLY this week. So I planned Soup Week (like Shark Week without the blood)... In honor of fall, we are having our favorite homemade soups all week... yummy!  Today was my fav... corn chowder

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Kastner Kids Cook: Noah

Today was Noah's night... What a GREAT job he did! This boy is going to make someone a WONDERFUL husband some day!


broccoli cheese soup (did only broccoli in this recipe)
yogurt chicken
mint chocolate chip cheesecake (this is like the recipe we used but we added 2 tsp mint extract)

The Kastner Kids Cook: Elijah

Friday was Elijah's day!  His menu was PERFECT (because mom didn't have to help him too much :-)


Wild Creamy Chicken Soup

Chili Cheese Hot Dogs (with chili from a can -- TY Eli)


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Kastner Kids Cook: Jeremiah

Tonight was day 1 of The Kastner Kids Cook. So far its been a lot of fun.  The kids have LOVED planning their menus, shopping for their groceries and are eagerly awaiting (all but Jeremiah) their chances to cook.

Jeremiah's Menu:

Mozzarella Sticks
Tater Tot Casserole
Dirt Cake

He did a MARVELOUS job!  Find links to his recipes above.

Dirt Cake

1/2 pckg of Oreo crumbs, crushed
2 big pckgs of choclate pudding
1 big container of Cool Whip

Layer the above (in that order) in a dish and top with gummy worms.

[Sorry!  I forgot to take a picture before we had some.]

Tater Tot Casserole

We LOVE us some tater tot casserole!  Here's our version (well at least our current version. It is CONSTANTLY changing.):

Tater Tot Casserole

Brown 3lbs of ground beef.
Mix in 2 big cans of Cream of Mushroom Soup.
Add 1 small bag of frozen corn.

Pour that mixture into the bottom of 2 9x13 pans.
Cover it with American cheese or shredded cheddar.
Cover with a single layer of tater tots.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Cake Pops!!!!

Ohmigosh!  I did it!!!!  And guess what? It WAS as easy as it looked (okay well once I stopped being cheap it was).

My kids tried cake pops at Starbucks last week and they LOVED them!  So I googled, and decided to try to make them.  Well if this foodie wasn't also a cheapie then it woulda been a BREEZE!  As it was I ended up having to run to Walmart in the middle of my project to spend the couple of bucks I shoulda just spent in the FIRST place!  See I didn't want to pay for the Wilson candy melts... so I decided to follow a cheapskate recipe that used melted chocolate chips instead DON'T DO IT!!!! SPEND THE STINKING $2.50 and buy the candy melts!  They melt and top with EASE and they harden SO quickly too!

Cake Pops

1  cake mix (any flavor; we did devil's food) prepared according to package directions
1 can frosting (any flavor; we did chocolate fudge)
lollipop sticks
2 pckgs Wilton candy melts (pick a color; we chose PINK)
sprinkles (we chose chocolate)

Crumble the cake into crumbs in a bowl. Mix in the entire can of frosting until thoroughly combined.

Roll the cake & frosting mixture into balls. (This part gets a little messy.)

Place the cake balls on a wax paper lined cookie sheet.

Stick a lollipop stick in each one and freeze for 1 hour or more.

Put the Wilton candy melts in a bowl and pop it in the microwave for 2 min. Stir. Heat for 30 seconds at a time stirring in between until completely melted. [sorry I was too frazzled by my late night trip to Walmart... forgot to take a pic of this part]. Dip the cake pop in the candy coating. Cover completely. Decorate quickly before the coating hardens.

I bought little styrofoam balls that John cut in half so I would have stands for my pops.

[There are SO many cute ideas for these!  I LOVED the yellow pops with black smiley faces. You can make them to fit any holiday: white bunnies at easter, red/white/blue patriotic pops, reindeer, etc... Bakerella is OVER-THE-TOP with rabbits, Mickey Mouse, et al... you should REALLY check it out!]

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Chocolate Bombs

So a FB thread from Friday night introduced me to Applebee's Dessert Shooters. I looked up a copycat recipe, made it easier (because there was NO way I was making chocolate mousse from SCRATCH!) and ohhhhhhhhhh MYLANTA!  Heavenly dessert!  We're calling them (Jeremiah named them):

Chocolate Bombs

12 oreos
1 small pckg. instant chocolate pudding
1 1/2 cups milk
16 oz. cool whip
6 Tbsp. Godiva white chocolate liquer
6 oz. chocolate chips
6 Tbsp. hot fudge sundae topping
whipped cream

Crush Oreos and place 2 Tbsp. crumbs in the bottom of 6 small glasses.
Whisk milk into pudding mix until thoroughly combined; fold in cool whip and Godiva. Scoop onto oreo crumbs.
Chop up chocolate chips; sprinkle on mousse.
Top with a layer of hot fudge.
Cool 20 - 30 minutes in fridge.
Top with whip cream and serve.

[Be careful the alcohol apparently settles at the bottom of the mousse cuz WOW that last bite is POTENT!]

Friday, August 26, 2011

Mexican Pizza!

You know I love me some Mexican food!  Well I came up with my own Mexican Pizza idea. I don't like the meat that most peops put on a Mexican pizza. PLUS I didn't really plan this one in advance so I'm just making use of what I have around.

Mexican Pizza

bread machine pizza crust (I made this one whole wheat by doing 50/50 wheat and white flour.)
enchilada sauce (from a can)
cheddar cheese
green peppers (from the GARDEN)
sliced beefsteak tomatoes (from the GARDEN)
sliced black olives
black beans

layer it all on there... bake 15 - 20 on 425

Tomato and Olive Pizza

New pizza experiments tonight.... Not quite sure how it will even turn out (I'll stick the pics in after I get it outta the oven):

Tomato and Olive Pizza

Roll out a bread machine pizza crust onto your pizza pan. (I made this one whole wheat by doing 50/50 wheat and white flour.)
Spray the crust with EVOO cooking spray.
Scatter halved, pitted black olives and halved cherry (or grape) tomatoes over the crust.
Sprinkle mozzarella and parmesan over the entire pizza.
Spritz with a light spray of EVOO cooking spray.

Bake 15 - 20 minutes on 400.

Jami's Oooey Goooey Brownies

I'm not a fan of brownies from a box mix. Really and truly the from scratch brownies are not much harder. If you're gonna dirty a mixing bowl, you might as well GO ALL THE WAY! We're having brownies tonight because after 3 LONG years I finally broke down and bought a new Pampered Chef Rectangular Baker. It was a long and PASSIONATE love affair I had with my stoneware baker... I made EVERYTHING in that baker:  brownies, tater tot casserole, pizza spaghetti, lasagna... EVERYTHING!!!!  Then one day I had it sitting on the stove and someone turned on the wrong burner underneath it.  A loud explosion! and my baker was no more.  That was THREE YEARS ago!  ugh!

 But the love affair has reignited and tonight we make a nice fatty treat to help season that baby up!


4 squares Baker's Unsweetened Baking Chocolate
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350.
Microwave chocolate and butter (about 2 - 3 minutes; until butter is completely melted).
Stir until chocolate is complete melted.
Stir in sugar.
Add eggs and vanilla; mix well.
Stir in flour and chocolate chips until well blended.
Spread into pan.
Bake 30 to 35 minutes.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Kastner McMuffins....

This is John's new breakfast staple... it's quick... it's yummy... it's PACKED with protein. Dependent upon how virtuous we're feeling (and how long it has been since we've been to the store)... this is healthy or decadent. Here's what you need:

healthy - Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Bread or English Muffin
mediocre - whole wheat toast or english muffin
very little nutritional value - generic white flour english muffin from Walmart

healthy - make your own turkey sausage patty... no recipe for this one yet but I'm tackling it next week and will post it when I master it
mediocre - turkey sausage patty from Walmart
heart attack in patty form - maple flavored pork sausage patty from Walmart

only one way to do this one

healthy - leave it off
medicore - provolone or mozzarella
fattening - cheddar

Pop your bread in the toaster.
Wrap your sausage patty in a paper towel and heat it in the microwave. (our micro takes 1 min)
Spray a glass custard dish with non-stick spray; crack an egg into it; use a fork to break up the yoke a little so it doesn't explode. Wrap entire custard dish in a paper towel to prevent splatters, allowing your egg to breathe while it cooks. (our micro takes 1 min)
Layer sausage, egg and cheese on your bread choice (add some butter or mayo to your bread if you're being truly decadent) making a sandwich.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Tomato Basil Rotini

Found a recipe at one of my FAVORITE sites Kraft Foods.... (I love them even after they started charging for the AWESOME Kraft Food & Family magazine they used to send for FREE.) But Walmart didn't have Philadelphia Sundried Tomato and Basil Cream Cheese Spread.  I figured I would just concoct some of my own, but I forgot to buy the sundried tomatoes!  ERGH!  In the end, we ended up with a Jami recipe based off a Kraft Recipe.  Here's what I did:

Boil two packages of rotini. (I used plain old normal rotini but you could use tri-color or whole wheat too.)
Saute 6 cloves of pressed garlic in 4 Tbsp. of EVOO. (My Pampered Chef Garlic Press is definitely one kitchen tool I could NOT live without!)
Add cooked pasta and one entire tub of Philadelphia Cooking Creme Original. Cook a few minutes.
Stir in 5 BIG fresh tomatoes (from my garden); chopped (just minutes after they were pulled from the vine... MMMMMM).
Mix in 1/4 cup fresh basil and 4 Tbsp. (actually much MUCH more for the Kastners; I mixed is a couple of handfuls; then I sprinkled more on each person's dish) parmesan cheese.


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Tortilla Lasagna

[a recipe from the KING of the Kastners' kitchen]

I gave John a recipe from Prevention. He applied some Kastner flair and the result was an AMAZING dinner!  (and I'm not saying that just because I didn't have to cook it).

1 1/2 cups of diced tomatoes
2 Tbsp cumin
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 diced fresh jalapeno
1 diced white onion

Bring the above ingredients to a simmer in a saucepan. Cover the bottom of a 9x13 baking pan with tortilla chips. Pour the sauce over the chips. Layer cheese on top of the sauce.

Bake 20 minutes (or until the cheese bubbles) at 400 degrees.  YUM!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

3-Cheese Mini Lasagnas

I got the idea for this recipe out of Prevention magazine, so in THEORY it is healthy. It really doesn't have too much bad for you although cheese can be fattening so watch your amounts; however, the cheeses in this recipe: mozzarella, parmesan, and ricotta are all pretty virtuous.

Olive Oil Cooking Spray
Wonton Wrappers (my new FAVORITE ingredient!!!)
Petite Diced Tomatoes
Ricotta Cheese
Garlic powder

Mix about 1/4 cup ricotta with 1 tsp. basil, oregano, and garlic powder (I just used clumps and pinches for my measurements). Stir until thoroughly incorporated. Spray a muffin tin with olive oil spray. Press a wonton wrapper into each muffin cup. Add 1 Tbsp. diced tomatoes, 1 tsp. of seasoned ricotta, a pinch of parmesan and a pinch of mozzarella to each wonton. Repeat ALL layers: wonton, tomatoes, ricotta, parmesan, and mozzarella.

Bake at 375 for 10 to 15 minutes. Let stand at least 5 minutes to firm up before serving.

Friday, July 29, 2011

OHMIGOSH! Mozzarella Sticks!!!

Disclaimer: This is a NAUGHTY recipe! As in many-minutes-of-cardio-to-make-up-for-them NAUGHTY! But once you taste them. You won't care how bad they are!

Take one piece of string cheese.
Roll it up in a won ton wrapper.
Secure the won ton wrapper with a toothpick.
Toss it in your deep fryer until the wrapper is crispy and golden brown.


Saturday, February 26, 2011

Guilt-Free Chips

I have this old cookbook.  John found it about 10 years ago in an apartment. Someone left it behind. It is Healthy Homestyle Cooking, and it has TONS of great ways to make everyday meals healthy. The author tosses in a few non-madeover recipes for good measure.  Here's one.  We tried it tonight.  AMAZ-ZUH-ZING!

Preheat oven to 350.
Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray.
Cut wonton wrappers diagonally into triangles and place them on the cookie sheet.
Spray wonton wrappers with non-stick spray.
Sprinkle them with parmesan cheese.
Bake 8-9 minutes.


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The BEST Chicken Noodle Soup!!!!!

Mkay so I have been making homemade chicken noodle soup for SEVERAL years, but the stuff I made tonight!  It was the BEST I have every  made!  The secret was in the noodles. Typically they get a little mushy, but tonight I did them RIGHT!

the BEST chicken noodle soup

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
8 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
4 carrots, sliced into coins
4 stalks of celery, sliced
wide egg noodles

Place chicken in pot (my chicken breasts were still frozen and it worked JUST fine); cover with water. Boil for about 15 minutes. Remove chicken breasts and cut them into chunks.  Return chicken to pot. Add chicken broth, water, carrots, celery, garlic & pepper. Simmer for 20 - 30 minutes. Add egg noodles. Turn heat down to low. Cook until noodles are ALMOST soft, still a bit al dente. Remove the pot from the burner and cover it. Let is sit for 10 minutes.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Italian Chili

I was trying to think of a new twist on chili... Decided to try making it with an Italian twist.... I made the chili just as I make normal chili but I used Italian spices and beans.  (It's healthy too!)  Here you go:


2 lbs ground turkey in a swoosh of EVOO. Season with: minced onions (could substitute with fresh onion but I was too tired tonight), oregano, basil, garlic, and pepper.

Add 4 smalll cans diced tomatoes and another round of spices: oregano, basil, garlic and pepper.  Simmer

Add 2 cans cannellini beans. Simmer.

Serve over bowtie noodles. Garnish with Parmesan.

Spinach & Tortellini Soup

YUM!  Healthy!  EASY!  There is NOTHING wrong with this soup!  It is a Prevention recipe.  So follow this link and enjoy!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Dip

I am SO obsessed with all things buffalo!!!! (sauce that it; not meat)... I was walking past an end of the aisle display at Walmart when it started speaking to me. No I mean it really started talking... there was a monitor playing a video of some TV chef touting this recipe.  I purchased the ingredients; slashed the fat and calories (see below) and YUMMY!  It was GREAT!

Here's how I slashed fat and calories:

*used 1 pkg of fat free cream cheese (woulda done both fat free but I already had a pckg of cream cheese at home that was reg... remember I'm cheap!)
*used low fat ranch
*meant to use 2% cheddar but forgot to grab it and had to use the reg I had at home :(
*meant to use celery but was too lazy to cut it up
*ate it with multigrain Tostitos

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Healthy Buffalo Chicken Bites

I <3 my hot sauce! Buffalo Wild Wings... OH I love it!  But too many calories!  Here's how I made 'em skinny, and they were GOOD!

I took two boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I sliced them up into slightly bigger than bite size chunks. Baked them on 500 for 20 min. Then I coated the pieces in Frank's Red Hot Wings sauce. Baked them for 10 more min. Removed them from the oven and tossed the pieces in the sauce in a the pan before letting them cool and absorb the sauce for five minutes.

Serve them with reduced-fat, buttermilk ranch.


Healthy Taco Dip

So still on the lose weight kick... But tonight we wanted to have a little Packer Party with the kiddos, sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo I made over our favorite appetizers.

Taco Dip

1can fat-free refried beans
8 oz fat-free cream cheese
8 oz fat-free sour cream
8 oz salsa (I used homemade that was sodium free)
2 cups reduced fat Mexican cheese
diced tomatoes
sliced black olives
green onions

Mix cream cheese, sour cream, and salsa. On a large plate, ayer beans, sour cream/cream cheese mixture, lettuce, cheese, tomatoes, olives, and green onions.  Serve with baked tortilla chips.  So YUMMY! You won't even miss the fat, sodium and calories.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Healthy Chili

[Quick Disclaimer: Yes!  I fell off the wagon and did NOT finish the 12 Treats of Christmas.  I know this! I'm a horrible human being!  But I've moved on from that.]

I'm losing WEIGHT!  We went on the 6-day Body Makeover for six days (duh!)

and I lost 11 pounds in 6 days!  WOOT!  WOOT!  We're off it now (it was just a turbo charged start to our healthy living resolution) and we're just trying to eat healthier.  [On an aside: one thing that I REALLY learned during the 6 day thingy was I eat WAY too much sodium!  In just two days, my face didn't even look like me anymore.  ALL puffiness was gone!  WEIRD!  I still LOVE my salt shaker, but I am currently imposing a separation until we can reconcile our differences... mainly the extra 50+ pounds the salt helps me cling to]

So my sodium epiphany has led me to learn that fresh herbs go a LONG way to making you forget your salt shaker.  So I made over my chili recipe and OH BOY did it turn out great!  Hannah Carpenter... this blog is for you!  At your request, here's the recipe:

Put a swish of EVOO in the pan and saute one chopped onion and 2 - 4 cloves of garlic.  When they start to get translucent add 2 lbs ground turkey and fresh herb mix [in a Magic Bullet (or other food processor) combine:  a big fistful of cilantro, a small chunk of jalapeno, 3x as much onion as jalapeno, and the juice of one lime... pulverize it].  Brown the ground turkey and drain off the fat.

Add two BIG cans of diced tomatoes with juices and one can full of water.  [I suppose if I were truly virtuous I would have paid double for the "no sodium" tomatoes but you can take the girl out of the cheapskate but you can't take the cheapskate outta the girl... or something like that... I just got the regular ones cuz they were CHEAPER.]  Add a BIG palmful of cumin, another palmful or chili powder (again coulda, woulda, shoulda paid for the salt-free but TOO cheap!), sprinkle in some black pepper and simmer away.

Add two cans of kidney beans [I was virtuous here!!!!!  I didn't pay for salt free beans but I tossed them in my colander and RINSED away all the salt!].  We served this over whole wheat rotini and garnished with 2% cheddar and low fat sour cream.

Guess what????  It was FABULOUS!  And we hardly missed all the salt, fat and processed flour I left out!
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