Saturday, January 17, 2015

This week's menu!

I thought I would link up this week's menu items!  The recipes are all really easy and can be prepped ahead of time, of course!

Sunday: Prep Ahead:  Season up the chicken Saturday night and let it sit in the fridge overnight.
Slow Roasted Chicken, Steamed Green Beans and Mashed Potatoes
This is one of those rare recipes that is a hit with everyone!  It's so easy and so good!

Monday: Prep Ahead: This is so easy to prepare.  You can do it quickly the morning of or get everything ready the night before and store your slow cooker insert in the fridge.  That's what I usually do.
Slow Cooker Pulled PorkPortuguese Sweet Bread in the bread machine (scroll down for recipe), Carrot Sticks

Tuesday: Prep Ahead: Make the meatballs Monday night after the kids go to sleep and store them in the fridge overnight.
Slow Cooker Turkey Meatballs , Salad
We were supposed to have these last week but we ended up having bread machine crescent rolls with turkey and cheese.  I don't have a link to this recipe but if you want it, let me know! It's a great one.

Wednesday:  Prep Ahead: Defrost the picadillo meat in the fridge overnight.
Picadillo Quesadillas, Snap Peas
A couple weeks ago I tried a slow cooker picadillo recipe and I have to admit, it wasn't a keeper for us.  I felt like we were eating chili that needed more flavor.  It made a ton though so I froze it in 1 cup containers and we will use it for quesadillas!

Thursday: Prep Ahead: Prepare the entire recipe Wednesday night and store in fridge. I have actually made this recipe 2 days ahead of time and it was still great.
Baked Ziti, Salad
I love this recipe but if you don't cover it while it bakes, it dries out.  Also, I always double it and get two pans out of it.  It freezes really well!

Friday: Prep Ahead: Set the bread machine up with the ingredients in the morning and use the delay timer to have the dough ready at 5:00pm. I usually set the dough to be ready about an hour before I actually want to eat dinner.  This way, it can rise for a half hour and the girls can have time to prepare their pizzas.
Make Your Own Pizza , Cucumbers, Red Peppers, Carrot Sticks
The girls like to make their own little creations.  Talia actually prefers to make a copycat version of Domino's cheesy breadsticks.

Saturday: Prep Ahead: Mix everything in the morning and store in the fridge until ready to bake!
Tomato Basil Shrimp , Brown Rice, Sautéed Broccoli Rabe

Have a great week!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

lightened up butter-less shrimp scampi

Here is a great weeknight recipe! Super flavorful, lightened up shrimp scampi! It comes together in about 20 minutes!  I promise you will not miss the butter!

Prep Ahead Plan:  Take the time to peel and devein the shrimp the night before and leave them in a bowl in the fridge.  Chop the parsley and garlic the night before too! That is really the most time consuming part of the whole recipe.

Lightened up Shrimp Scampi
adapted from the Weight Watchers

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 lb raw shrimp, large, peeled and deveined
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt-free lemon & herb seasoning 
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
6 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup dry white wine or vermouth
3 teaspoons cornstarch
1 cup chicken broth
8 oz cooked linguine (I use Dreamfields)
¼ cup fresh parsley chopped (or 2 tablespoons dried)

 1.  Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat; add garlic and sauté 1 minute. Stir in  fresh lemon juice, lemon pepper seasoning and salt and pepper.
2.  Add shrimp and sauté until bright pink, stirring frequently, just a few minutes.
3.  Add wine and simmer about 1 minute.
4.  Dissolve cornstarch in chicken broth in a small cup and whisk until blended;
     add mixture to skillet and simmer 2 minutes, until sauce thickens.  If using dried parsley add it now (if using fresh, wait until serving).
5.  Add cooked linguini to the shrimp and scampi sauce mixture (if using fresh parsley, mix it in before serving).

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Sweetened Guinness and Teriyaki Grilled Steak

Sweetened Guinness and teriyaki steak for St. Patrick’s Day

With our combined Sheridan and Eagan Irish ancestry one would think we would be serving up some corned beef and cabbage for tomorrow night’s St. Patty’s Day feast. Nope.  We love the idea of that traditional Irish dinner but unfortunately, neither of us like it very much!  In the past we’ve celebrated with Guinness bbq chicken or Guinness braised short ribs  Tomorrow, we’re serving up another Guinness flavor infused dish.  Very easy and very flavorful!  Sweetened Guinness and teriyaki grilled steak!

Prep Ahead Plan:  Combine all ingredients in a Ziploc bag either the night before or 6-8 hours before grilling!  Marinate in fridge!

Sweetened Guinness and Teriyaki Grilled Steak
½ cup of Guinness beer
¼ cup of teriyaki sauce (I use Kikoman reduced sodium or if I'm extra ambitious, I use the homemade recipe found HERE)
2 large cloves minced garlic
3 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
1 pound steak (Whichever cut you prefer.  NY strip, t-bone and steak tips work well.)

1.     Combine everything except for steak in a bowl or large Ziploc bag.  Mix well.
2.     Add steak to marinade, moving it around to make sure the marinade is all over the steak.
3.     Refrigerate overnight or for 6-8 hours.
4.     Grill over medium-high heat on a covered grill 3 to 5 minutes per side for medium doneness depending on thickness of steak and how you like your steak cooked! 

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Asian Shrimp (or chicken) Noodle Salad (served warm or cold)

I came across an adaptation of this Asian style dressing online and thought it would be delicious served over linguini and veggies!  It might be a new favorite!  I used Dreamfields Pasta in an effort to reduce carbs and couldn't taste the difference!  The recipe below is pictured here but I think next time I will add more vegetables.  Maybe double the carrots and add broccoli too!  We ate it warm for dinner but I ate the leftovers cold as a salad and it was even better the next day!  A keeper!

Prep Ahead Plan:  I prepared the dressing and cut the veggies the night before.  It all comes together very quickly at dinner time when those 2 things are done ahead of time!  

Asian Shrimp and Noodle Salad

1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup light soy sauce
1/3 cup rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
3 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 (16 ounce) Dream Fields Linguine
2 carrots, cut julienne style
1 red pepper, cut julienne style
Handful (or 2) of snow peas
1 pound cooked shrimp or 2 cups cooked chicken
Chopped fresh cilantro (a handful or about a 1/3 cup)
Chopped scallions (a handful or about 1/3 cup)

1. In a mason jar or medium sized bowl, mix together the first 7 ingredients for the dressing.  Shake and refrigerate until ready to use or put aside to use immediately.
2.  Boil pasta according to package directions, drain and rinse with cold water.
3.  While pasta boils prepare carrots, red pepper and snow peas by adding them to the bowl you are going to mix the entire salad together.  (I like to steam them slightly so they are not crunchy but you don’t have to.  I actually put them all in the bowl I’m going to mix the salad in, add a little water, cover it partially and microwave for about 2 minutes.  Drain water.)
4.  Mix pasta with veggies and shrimp or chicken.  Pour dressing over top. Top with cilantro and scallions. Stir to combine and serve warm or cold.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Escarole and Bean Soup..lunch for Mommy

What do you eat for lunch during the week?  When I was working, I lined up Riley, Talia and my lunch boxes and packed them full of healthy options. The girls' lunches are still filled with a variety of satisfying, healthy treats but mine is pretty much non-existant! I never went back to work after Lola was born and since then I have been very inconsistent about feeding myself healthy lunches!  I seem to have breakfast and dinner down but lunch either gets skipped or I find myself foraging, eating the remnants of Talia's soup or the crusts of Lola's peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  I'm not big on resolutions but this is something I would like to be more consistent about in 2013.

Soup is always a great lunch option for me (and the kids).  I make it over the weekend and we eat it for several days during the week.  It's quick to reheat in between preschool pick up and the arrival of Talia's afternoon kindergarten bus!  Escarole and bean soup is on the menu this week!

Prep Ahead Plan:  I made this soup on Sunday and as the week goes on, the flavors marry and taste even more wonderful.  Soup only gets better with time!

Escarole and Bean Soup
1 head of escarole, washed and chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed or minced
dash of crushed red pepper (optional)
2 (32 oz) cartons of low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
15 oz can of cannelloni beans

1.  Heat olive oil in a large soup pot.  Add garlic and crushed red pepper and saute for about 1 minute.
2.  Add escarole and saute for a few minutes until the leaves get wilty (if that's a word).
3.  Add broth and beans and bring to a boil.  Simmer until the leaves are tender enough for your taste!
4.  Serve with a sprinkling parmesan cheese (optional).

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

chicken and rice soup in the slow cooker

Busy, busy, busy.  Forgive my lack of posts!  How do these other bloggers do it?  For me, sitting at my computer for any kind of extended period of time while my children are awake is virtually impossible.  Forming a coherent thought between the hours of 6:00am and 8:00pm  is simply out of the question.  Am I doing something wrong???  Once the girlies go to bed, my husband and I can FINALLY catch up and have some quality time before one of us crashes (usually "the one" that has to get up at 5:00am is the first to go!).  I am usually not too far behind my hard working husband who leaves at the crack of dawn, but here I am tonight, up way too late, sharing my chicken and rice soup recipe for friends to enjoy!!!! I will regret this in the morning.  What are the chances my kids sleep in (i.e., past 5:05am)???? :)  Sleeplessness aside, it's so easy and so delicious! Please let me know what you think!

Prep Ahead Plan:  Toss everything in the slow cooker insert EXCEPT for the brown rice anytime before you want to cook it!  I like to do it the night before or up to one day ahead of time!   

Chicken and Rice Soup

1 onion, chopped
1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced or crushed
3 stalks celery, chopped
4 large or 6 medium sized carrots
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup or chopped fresh parsley or a few shakes of dried parsley
3 raw, boneless chicken breasts chopped up (You can use raw or cooked or the meat off of a store bought rotisserie chicken! Anything goes!) I used raw in the recipe pictured.
Fresh ground black pepper
salt to taste
3 (32 0z) cartons of Natures Promise low sodium chicken broth
1 boil in a bag brown rice*
1.  Add everything but rice to the slow cooker insert and cook on low for 8 or more hours. 2. Anytime before serving, cook rice according to package directions and add as much of the cooked brown rice as you like to the soup (I add the whole bag).
*You can buy regular brown rice and add it to cook into the soup instead of the bag. Sometimes I do this and it soaks up too much of the broth, or my timing is off so I like to cook the rice separate! 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Paula Deen's Snake Bites for Halloween!

***photo credit:  The Food Network***

Just thought I would share our dinner recipe for tonight!  You can make it ahead of time and leave it in the fridge until you're ready to bake it!  (I put the food coloring on right before baking!).  It's super easy to do with store bought crescent roll dough! I do half plain cheddar and half with ham and cheddar for my plain Jane's!

Here is the link to her video and recipe!  

Paula's Snake Bites!

Happy Halloween everyone!