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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Nozzole a chianti classico

This was excellent. It was in the 24 dollar range. As it says it is a velvety wine--nice depth. We loved it!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Chicken in the garden casserole

This is a very VERY moist dish and full of flavor. Great served with cranberry sauce. Below is the look of the casserole from the top (for those of you that eat cheese you can add cheese on top for last 5 minutes of cooking. It is basically layered broccoli, mixed veggies, chicken and a creamy mushroom sauce. If you do it the long way it is so moist and terrific.
Here below is a spoonful---oh so tender and moist!
The picture below is what the chicken looks like when you first place it in the crock pot Below is the first layer in the casserole dish AFTER the chicken has been cooked in crock pot
Below is the chicken when it is done COOKING IN THE CROCK. THEN You chop it up for the casserole and save the strained broth for use in the mushroom sauce.

First early in day or the day before (or you can just use 3 cups left over chicken BUT IF YOU COOK IT IN THE CROCK USING THE METHOD BELOW IT IS VERY VERY MOIST AND BETTER) cook chicken:

3 cups chicken (I used 3 skinless boneless thighs and one breast)
1 cup broth

1 cup water
rosemary, sage, thyme, parsley, pinch of oregano (all fresh) (I just place some of each-2 rosemary sprigs about 3 inches long, 6 sprigs of thyme, 6 small sage leaves, a small handful parsley, and pinch of oregano all from my garden)
salt and pepper

Put the above in the crock pot and cook HIGH 2 hours AND THEN LOW 2 1/2 hours. When done save the broth and chop up the chicken--it will just fall apart!

1 pound mushrooms
1 cup soy milk
salt and pepper
1 cup of the broth from cooking chicken
2 tab of nutritional yeast (optional)
2 tab cornstarch

Saute the mushrooms. When done mix the cornstarch and the soy milk. Add the broth, soy milk, salt and pepper to the mushrooms and stir until thickened. Add nutritional yeast.


3 cups chopped broccoli
10 ounces mixed vegetables

While sauteing mushrooms cut up 3 cups fresh brocoli and cook in a pot for 2 minutes.Cook frozen mixed vegetables 5 minutes.


In 2 quart casserole place the broccoli, then the mixed veggies, then the chicken, then the mushroom sauce over all. Bake uncovered 30 minutes-to 35. Serve with wide noodles or rice or biscuits or whatever.

PS. To save time you can just use chicken that is already cooked and 2 cans of cream of mushroom soup and 1/2 cup of milk to make the sauce--HOWEVER most cream of mushrooms have wheat (so not gluten free). ALSO I guarantee it won't taste as good.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Pasta Primavera with Asparagus

We really loved this dish , but we did not like the tomatoes in it. Next time we will cook it without the tomaotes. It would also be good with more asparagus or with some added mushrooms.

I am going to give both versions. I will put my altered version in with the recipe. (Found the recipe in Family Circle).

Makes 6 servings. Prep 20 minutes. Cook 15 minutes.

1/2 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces (I could use more)
1/2 pound green beans, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
2 sweet orange peppers, cored, seeded and cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1 pound spaghetti (I used spaghetti for hubby and Gluten Free fettuccini for me)
3/4 cup half and half (I used soymilk and 2 tab of corn starch for thickening it
3/4 cup chicken broth
3/4 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/4 tsp black pepper (or to taste)
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
2 tab olive oil (I omitted--just used sritz of pam in iron skillet)
5 cloves garlic, sliced
2 cups grape tomatoes, halved. (I WOULD OMIT)
Sliced mushrooms (in place of tomatoes--ME)
1/3 cup grated parmesan (I omitted and used 1-2 tab of nutritional yeast)
1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped (I forgot!)

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add asparagus and green beans; cook 4 minutes. Add peppers and cook 1 more minute. Scoop out vegetables with a large slotted spoon and place in a colander. Rinse under cold water. (I used special pan with insert and just lifted the veggies out).
2. Add pasta to boiling water and cook following package directions. Drain and return to pot.
3. While pasta is cooking, place half-and-half (me soymilk with cornstarch), chicken broth, salt, pepper, nutmeg in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer (me--until thickened--stirring constantly).
4. Heat large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add spritz of pam (or oil) and if using mushrooms sautee and after done add garlic and cook 30 seconds. Add cooked vegetables and tomatoes (if using tomatoes). Cook stirring a few times , about 1 minute, 30 seconds. Add nutritional yeast to the soymilk/broth pot. (or cheese if using).
5. I did my bowls indivindually since I am gluten free. I just placed noodles in bowls, adding the soymilk mixture and then the veggies and combined. You can let stand a few minutes. You can add parsley if desired.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Lima Bean Soup

This picture doesn't show it, but you add milk before serving. You can use regular milk, or 1/2 and 1/2 or soymilk, almond milk etc. This was found in a little book put out by Taste of Home. I did some changes which I will note. One of my FAVORITES

3 cans (14-1/2 ounces each ) chicken broth. (I just used a quart since that is all I had--you could sub vegetable broth to make it vegan or Chickpea broth)

2 cans (15 ounce each) lima beans , rinsed and drained. (I used frozen baby limas and some butter peas)
3 medium carrots, thinly sliced
2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
2 small sweet red peppers, chopped (I also used a bit of roasted red peppers)
2 small onions, chopped
2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
1/4 cup butter (I omitted)
1-1/2 tsp dried marjoram
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
12 tsp dried oregano
1 cup half and half cream (I used almond milk -not shown in the picture)
3 bacon strips, ooked and crumbled (I just used a bit of liquid smoke--about 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon)

Combine first 12 ingredients; bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 25-35 minutes or until veggies are tender. Add milk; heat through but do not boil. Sprinkle with bacon just before serving or use liquid smoke. Makes 3 quarts

Black Bean Oatmeal Burgers

Ok--I know these look strange but with all of the fixings , they were good. This is another recipe found in Dr. Esselstyn's book. I like this with BQ sauce, tomato, sliced onions and lettuce and mustard.

2 cups black beans
1 14.5 ounce can tomatoes with zesty mild chilies (I partially drained this)
1 garlic clove, minced or 1 tsp garlic powder (I forgot)
1 tsp onion powder
2 green onions, chopped (I just used a bit of chopped regular onion)
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup cilantro or parsley (used parsley)
2 cups of old fashioned rolled oats

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
2. Process carrots in food processor until very fine. Add the rest of the ingredients except for the oats. Blend well
3. Add the blended ingredients to the oats
4. Form into patties and place on baking sheet and bake for 8-9 minutes. (I used a 1/2 cup measuring cup and made 8 large patties by scooping and dumping onto pan)
5. You are supposed to turn patties over and broil for 2 more minutes. Mine were still too juicy so I didn't turn them ; I just placed them under the broiler for 2 minutes to brown the tops. Then I took them out and let them cool a little and they could be served easily.
6. Serve on buns with all the fixings--lettuce, tomato, onion, BQ sauce etc.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

veggies and hummus (good snacking)

This makes a quick easy , healthy snack--so just wanted to remind myself!! I also like slices of red bell pepper and green bell pepper on the tray.

For the hummus (no oil)

15 ounces (2 cups) chickpeas already cooked(save the cooking water if cooking your own)
3 tsp garlic minced (and extra for middle of hummus)
juice of 1/2 a lemon
lemon zest ( 1/2 tsp or so)
salt and pepper to taste
4 tablespoons or so water or the cooking water or vegetable stock
1/4 tsp balsamic vinegar (optional--but I like the taste it adds)
salsa or picante sauce if desired
OPTIONAL: some jarred roasted red bell peppers --you can process this right in.
Also optional is some red ground cayenne pepper
Also optional is some turmeric for anti-cancer fighting.

In food processor process the chickpeas, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, and as much liquid to make a nice smooth humus. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add optional ingredients mentioned if desired.I like to place a bunch of extra minced garlic in the middle of the humus so those who want more garlic can get it. I also like some salsa in the side of the bowl so I can get both when dipping the veggies.

Ps. If you don't mind added oil --can add Tahina--even 1 tsp gives it a nicer flavor. If you like it creamier add a bit more water and place in blender after doing it in food processor.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Lentil loaf from Dr. Esselstyn

We liked this and it is great left over and in sandwiches. We served this with mashed white potatoes and mashed sweet potatoes and string beans. This was very tasty and we used BQ sauce--the Kraft Honey kind which made it fantastic (yes it has high fructose corn syrup...can't find any locally without it). My son thought, "ribs baking, it can't be! " ha. Mine did not come out loaf like--I may have had a bit more water from the cooking in mine--but I liked it because it was very moist and full of flavor.

This is also good on linguine --hmmm barbecue linguine--the best of both worlds ?

1 1/2 cups dry uncooked lentils, rinsed (NOTE: RED LENTILS WORK MUCH BETTER IN THIS -because they are so mashable)(DRAIN WELL after cooking)
2 medium onions, chopped (1 1/2 cups)
6 mushrooms, chopped
veg water or water (or dry wine for saute)
2 cups packed fresh spinach, chopped (you can use some well drained cooked frozen)
1 15 ounce can diced tomatoes (better to DRAIN off the liquid)OR I PREFER USING JUST 1 CUP OF FIRE ROASTED CRUSHED MUIR TOMATOES INSTEAD .
2 cups brown rice,(this means 2 cups of cooked rice--not 2 cups of raw rice) (I ALSO LIKE USING A WILD RICE BROWN RICE MIX
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dried sage
1 tsp Mrs. Dash's garlic and herb seasoning blend
1/2 tsp dried marjoram
1/2 cup of barbecue sauce or ketchup (I think the bq sauce makes this dish--I like extra sauce too when serving) (iF  using ketchup --I like adding a bit of brown sugar and a bit of Worcestershire sauce to it)
I added Salt and Pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (after cooking lentils) . Cook lentils in amount of water called for and then drain well before mashing if using the red lentils. If using the harder type lentils (ie brown) you may need to use a little liquid.

2. Stir-fry onions and mushrooms in broth, or water or wine. After they soften add spinach and cook covered until the spinach wilts.

3. Add onions and mushrooms, tomatoes, rice, garlic, sage, Mrs. Dash, and marjoram to lentils.

4. Press into a 9 by 5 inch loaf pan and spread with barbecue sauce on top. NOTE: This recipe actually makes enough for the 9 by 5 and another smaller pan.

5. Bake 45-60 minutes. Serve with mashed potatoes, or linguine or in a sandwich or however.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Cauliflower and Potato Curry

This was yummy. It would be good with Chicken for those of you that eat it--but it was great just the way the recipe calls for it--YUMMY. It passed my hubby's seal of approval! I found this from "Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease" by Dr. Esslstyn--good book and good recipes! good with mango chutney . Best if eaten the day you cooked it otherwise the onions seem to overwhelm it.

1 1/2 cups chopped onion
3 tsp minced fresh ginger
2-3 tab vegetable broth or wine (I used a dry white)
1 tab curry powder
3 cloves garlic, minced (about 3 teaspoons)
4 cups cauliflower florets
1 1/2 pounds red potatoes (about 4 medium), cubed--I used more and an assortment of kinds
1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
1 package of frozen peas
1/2 cup chopped cilantro (I left out)

1. Put onion, ginger, and veg broth or wine in pot on medium high. Cover and cook about 4 minutes.

2. Reduce heat to medium. Add curry powder and garlic and cook about 1 minute, stirring constantly.

3. Add cauliflower and potatoes and cook , stirring often 5 minutes (or longer) or until they begin to soften. Mine took longer.

4. Add tomatoes, reduce heat and cook covered 15 minutes or until veggies are tender--mine took a lot longer, possibly because I didn't do step 3 long enough.

5. Stir in peas and cook covered until peas are warm, about 2 minutes.

. Add cilantro (if using), stir , and serve with a salad and bread.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Mandarine Orange Cake (Gluten Free)

This is a quick easy cake. Very moist. I got this recipe from my Sister-in-law. Good with fresh strawberries!

Mandarin Orange Cake

1 cup rice flour
2 egg whites
2/3 cups sugar
1 11 ounce can mandarin oranges drained
1 tsp baking soda( I have also used cream of tarter)
3/4 tsp of salt
1/4 tsp of vanilla flavoring (I added this/ not necessary if you don't have it)

1/2 cup orange juice
1 tsp grated orange rind
1/4 cup sugar
(the recipe calls to add sugar to this, but I use Tropicana 50 which has cut the sugar content but is already sweet)

1. Stir together the flour, 2/3 cup of sugar, baking soda (cream of tarter) and salt. Add the egg whites and drained mandarin oranges and vanilla and stir vigorously until everything is well blended. Don't worry that there will not be enough liquid for a batter; the mandarin oranges break into pieces and give off juice.

2. Pour into a greased 8 inch square pan and bake at 350 for 25 or 30 minutes. It will start to turn a light brown. Prick holes all over the warm cake with a fork.

3. Stir the orange juice, sugar and orange rind together in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Spoon over the cake. Best served warm. OR it is really good refrigerated!!!! Yum.

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

This was quite tasty. I found the recipe from Dr. Esselstyn's book. However I like my peppers cooked more so I would parboil them for 5 minutes or so next time.

4 bell peppers (Me-that you parboil ahead)
2 medium onions, chopped (1-1 1/2 cups
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 tab peeled, chopped fresh ginger
broth or water or wine optional
2 cups corn
2 cups cooked brown rice
2 medium tomatoes, chopped (2 cups)
1 tab lemon juice and zest
1 tab balsamic vinegar
black pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut peppers in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Set peppers aside or parboil them if you want them to be tender.
2. Stir-fry onions until they start to brown. (I use iron skillet which only needs a spraying of Pam)
3. Add garlic and ginger and cook another 2-3 minutes , stiring)
4. Add corn and cook 2 minutes more.
5. Add rice, tomatoes, lemon juice, zest, vinegar, pepper and stir.
6. Fill pepper halves with this mixture pressing into corners and piling high.
7. Place in 13 by 9 inch pan and Cover with foil and bake 25 minutes

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Mexican Fetuccini or tacos

This was a very very happy surprise for us this week. Originally I made this to make a taco tower. But we used the left overs with some added Paul Newman's Marinara sauce and it was WONDERFUL on Fettuccini or spaghetti noodles!! So a great new meatless dish for us!!
We used the above ingredients--along with an onion. I cooked up the onion and then added the rest.

1 onion
1 jar of mushrooms (could use fresh)
1 small can of sliced black olives
2 cans of black beans , drained
1 can of white corn or yellow corn
picante sauce
taco sauce
tacos or noodles

Cook up the onion. Add the rest using as much picante suace and taco sauce as desired. Serve with tacos or noodles---if serving with noodles add some Marinara on the noodles. Simple and goooood!