Oriental Lettuce Wraps

  As you can tell, we had a very non-traditional meal for Easter supper, Lettuce Wraps and fried rice, but boy was it good!  This recipe feeds a crowd, so half it if you have less mouths to feed.  I’d say this would feed about 14 people.

Oriental Lettuce Wraps

adapted from Pampered Chefs “All the Best” Cookbook (my favorite one!)

Oriental Lettuce Wraps

Ingredients

  • 4 packages Oriental Ramen Noodles With Seasoning Packet
  • 2 cups Seasoned, Cooked Chicken, Roughly Chopped
  • 3 whole Peppers: I Like Yellow, Orange And Red
  • 1 cup Green Onions, Sliced
  • 4 Tablespoons Soy Sauce (do Reduced Sodium Because Of Ramen’s High Salt Content)
  • ½ teaspoons Cayenne Pepper
  • 4 teaspoons Sesame Oil
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Pressed
  • 1 Inch Piece Of Ginger Root, Pressed (Or Peeled And Chopped Finely)
  • 2 cups Carrot Shreds
  • 1 whole Cucumber, Seeded And Cut Into Thin Strips
  • Lettuce: Butter, Boston, Leaf Lettuce, Whatever You Like As Long As It Can Hold The Noodle Mixture Securely
  • Soy Sauce And Sweet & Sour Sauce

  In a large pot, cook 4 pkgs. Ramen noodles in 6 cups of water, breaking each packet of Ramen into small pieces. Do not follow instructions on package, instead cook WITH seasonings until al dente. Then, drain and rinse with cold water.
  Cut veggies. Set aside cucumbers and carrots for later. Slice tops and bottoms of bell peppers and chop. Cut remaining pepper (the middles) into thin strips and refrigerate until serving time.
  Place noodles, chicken, chopped bell pepper {tops & bottoms only} and green onions in a large bowl. Stir to combine.
  In a small bowl, whisk together sesame oil, soy sauce and 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper. Pour over noodle mixture and stir to coat. Refrigerate until serving time.
  Thoroughly wash lettuce leaves, being careful not to tear and pat them dry. To serve: fill individual lettuce leaves with noodle mixture and top with cucumber, pepper strips and carrot shreds. Drizzle with soy and or sweet and sour sauce.
  No forks needed, just dig in!

Yum!

~T

Tijuana Torte

  This is another family favorite from my childhood.  It is easy and delicious! Only one down-fall, this is the one and only dish I have found that does NOT work when you substitute whole wheat tortillas for white.  In this particular case, you need the white because they get soft and disappear.  You could serve it with homemade guacamole and wheat chips to make yourself feel better!   :)

Tijuana Torte

(click title for an easy printable)

Tajiana Torte (4)

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Hamburger Cooked With Onion
  • 1 package Taco Seasoning
  • 16 ounces, weight Sour Cream
  • 29 ounces, weight Tomato Sauce
  • 4 ounces, weight Can Green Chilies
  • Mexican Cheese
  • 8 whole Flour Tortillas, Regular Size

  Brown hamburger with onion, drain.  Add tomato sauce, green chilies and taco mix. Simmer 10 minutes. Layer in casserole dish the following: (I have a round 3 Qt.Pyrex that is perfect tortilla size) a teeny tiny amount of meat sauce (less than you think, it’ll run out fast) then spread a tortilla generously with sour cream, place in dish on top of meat mix and add a layer of cheese. Repeat meat, than a sour cream-spread tortilla, then cheese. Keep going until you are out of meat mix, making sure you are ending with the meat mixture after the 8th tortilla. Cover top meat layer with cheese. Bake 350* for 30 minutes. Serve with chips.

Gooey and delicious!

~T

Before baking:

Tajiana Torte (5)

After baking:

Tajiana Torte (2)

Serve it up!

Tajiana Torte (4)

Creamy Italian Slow Cooker Chicken

This is comfort food at its finest! Easy to throw together and tastes like you worked all day on it!!!!

Creamy Italian Slow Cooker Chicken

Italian Crockpot Chicken with Angel Hair Pasta

Ingredients

  • 6 whole Bonless, Skinless Chicken Breast Halves
  • 1 envelope Italian Dressing Mix (about 1 Oz. Packet)
  • ¼ cups Water
  • 1 package (8 Oz. Package) Cream Cheese, Softened
  • 1 can (10 3/4 Oz. Can) Cream Of Chicken Soup
  • 1 can (4 Oz. Can) Mushroom Stems And Pieces, Drained
  • 1 pound Angel Hair Pasta

Rinse and pat dry the raw, thawed chicken. Place in a slow cooker. Combine salad dressing mix and water, pour over the chicken. Cover and cook on low for 3 hours.

In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and soup until blended. Stir in mushrooms. Pour over chicken. Cook 1 hour longer, or until chicken juices run clear.

Serve over cooked angel hair pasta. Tastes great with steamed fresh broccoli and garlic bread sticks!

Enjoy!  This one’s a family favorite!

~T

Mozzarella Meatball Sub & Weekend Potluck # 5

  This Meatball Sandwich came together quickly and easily after a busy day of running errands.  Don’t skimp on the real Mozzarella!  You can thank me later.  :)

Mozzarella Meatball Sub

Mozzarella Meatball Sub text

Ingredients

  • 2 packages Meatballs (14 Oz Each Of Italian And Original)
  • 1 jar (24 Oz) Of Your Favorite Spaghetti Sauce
  • 1 whole Wheat French Bread Loaf (Get A Wide Loaf)
  • 4 ounces, weight Ball Of Fresh Mozzarella Cheese
  • 4 Tablespoons Softened Butter
  • Garlic Powder, To Taste

Preheat oven to 350*. Cook meatballs according to package directions. I did mine from frozen, on the stove top for 25 minutes, covered in spaghetti sauce.
Slice bread lengthwise, being careful not to go all they way through, then spread with butter. Sprinkle with garlic powder to taste. Toast in warm oven a teeny bit while you slice fresh Mozzarella with a serrated knife. You don’t want the bread hard and crunchy like toast, just a bit crusty so the butter melts.
When meatballs are done, add sauce covered meatballs to your slightly toasty bread, stuffing clear to the back. (They won’t all fit.)
Cover in sliced mozzarella and wrap in foil. Bake at 350* for 20 minutes to get the cheese nice and melty.  Slice and serve hot!

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Oven Chili Dogs

  As you know, I started playing The Grocery Game this summer after 9 years of once a month Go Big & Go Home grocery shopping.  We switched gears in an attempt to cut our food budget back, and it’s working! Last week I saved $100!!!!!  BUT, there is a catch to this Grocery Game madness…….

 I’ve had to learn to menu plan just OPPOSITE of what I used to!

  In the olden days, I’d go through all my recipes and pick out whatever my heart desired that month, and then we’d go get the groceries. 

  Now, with the Grocery Game, I buy whatever is on sale and I have coupons for, THEN I make my menu based on what’s waiting for me in my pantry.

  Last month, Hormel Chili Masters went on sale and I had a coupon, so I picked up 2 cans, nervous that it might be gross.  Now, we don’t usually eat canned chili, it’s so easy to make your own, but I figured I would find SOMETHING to make with them, and I did! 

THESE! 

 {warning: ugly food photo alert!}

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  Now I wish I had gotten MORE Chili Masters while it was cheap, because we will be making this again!  No worries, they will come back through the sale cycle again, and I will be ready next time! :)

Oven Chili Dogs

{click title to print}

Adapted from In the Wabe

I am putting 2 photos because Dale and I couldn’t agree on which one was LESS ugly.  I’m telling you, people……Some food is just UGLY.  Yummy, but ugly.

So I give you:  2 Ugly photos for the price of 1.

Yipee-skipee.

Please, try to contain your excitement.

#1

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#2

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  Trust me, no matter how ugly it appears, this was actually a really yummy supper!!! It was the perfect way to use the Hot dogs and Chili I had just got on sale at Dillons, and it came together SO quickly!  A WIN-WIN all the way! 

(Click on the title above to be taken to Tasty Kitchen for an easy printable version.)

Ingredients

  • 8 whole Hot Dogs
  • 8 whole Wheat Hot Dog Buns
  • 2 15 oz. cans Hormel Chili Masters  {Or leftover homemade Chili is awesome here}
  • ½ whole Onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups Cheddar Cheese
  • Mayo, Mustard And Sweet Relish

Spread mayo on the inside of each hot dog bun. Add sweet relish and a stripe of yellow mustard. Fill with hot dogs and tightly squeeze them all in a 9×13 pan, I did 6 down one side and 2 along the edge.
Top hot dogs with chili, cheese and diced onion. Cover and bake at 350* for 45 minutes.
Enjoy!  They are SOOOO good!

 Welp, I did it.  I blogged Macaroni and hot dogs all in the same week.

 {hanging head in shame}

  I am pretty Anti- “Kid food” (read that: mac n chz, hot dogs, pb&j, spaghetti-o’s, freezer pizza, chicken nuggets & fish sticks) because when I used to babysit, it seemed that was all I ate, due to the limited palate of 2 and 3 year olds.  My goal has been to avoid canned meats and boxed foods as much as possible, as well as exposing my kids to all SORTS of different tastes, so they can’t be picky eaters. 

Guess this week is proof, that you gotta do what you gotta do!  And every once in a while, “kid food” tastes good. 

PB & J anyone?  :)

~T

UPDATED PHOTO as of 9/30/2012

Still not gorgeous, but better! :)

Mac & Cheese Lasagna

So we have established I am anti-cardboard food, right?!  No boxed meals!  WELLLLLL, the other day I was running SUPER DUPER late. I had been gone all day long and needed to feed my starving family, and quick! 

  Here is what I made after finding a recipe that used BOXED Mac & Cheese, which I just happened to have 2 of…{GASP!}

No judgments, desperate times call for desperate measures!!!!

Mac & Cheese Lasagna

(click title for easy printable)

Mac & Cheese Lasagna

  • 2 boxes (7.25 Oz. Box) Kraft Mac & Cheese
  • Additional Required Ingredients Specified In The Mac & Cheese Package (typically Milk And Butter Or Margarine)
  • 1 pound Hamburger, Seasoned To Taste
  • 1 jar (24 Oz. Jar) Spaghetti Sauce
  • 2 cups Mozzarella Cheese
  • Parmesan Cheese, To Sprinkle On Top

Heat oven to 350ºF. Prepare boxed macaroni according to package instructions (you’ll typically need milk and butter or margarine as directed in the package). Brown/drain hamburger. Spoon half the macaroni into a lightly greased 9×13 glass dish. Top with layers of half of each: sauce, meat and shredded cheese. Repeat layers, then sprinkle with parmesan.

Bake 20 minutes.

Serve with some fresh broccoli, steamed, a HUGE green salad, or something equally healthy to make yourself feel better about serving your kids boxed Mac & Cheese. This is delish, I bet even your hubby will like it! 

~T

Cheap Eats: Ham Bone Soup

  Everyone and their dog has a favorite Ham and Beans recipe it seems, so who am I to put ONE more nearly identical recipe out there in the www.

  {SIGH}

  Selfishly, it needs to be done so I have a pretty copy with photo for my recipe binders.  Forgive me and read on anyhow?!

Thanks. 

  So, I HATED Ham and Bean soup when I was a kid. H-A-T-E-D it!  Now? I love it and I am so proud of my 4 little Ferguson’s, who gobbled it right up.  Well, except Avery.  She hemmed and hawed and sighed and flopped around on her chair, until threatened with no cornbread.  That got her moving and her bowl was empty in NO time!

  I saved my ham bone from Christmas (they freeze wonderfully in ziplock, btw) knowing that I’d be able to make this soup when the craving hit.  If you don’t have a ham bone, I guess you are outta luck.  (anyone have a recipe that DOESN’T need the bone?)

  Unless you want to go get a Cooks Butt Cut bone-in ham and stick it in your crock pot, flat side down.  Add 1 can of coke for every 7 pounds of Ham. Cook on low 8 hours. Eat it, marvel at it’s deliciousness, then save your ham bone with some meat left on it for this:

Cheap Eats: Ham Bone Soup

(Click title to be taken to TK for an easy printable format)

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Ingredients

  • 1 pound Dried White Beans
  • 6 cups Water
  • 1 whole Ham Bone
  • Additional Leftover Ham Chunks (if Available)
  • 4 stalks Celery With Leaves, Finely Chopped
  • 1 whole Onion, finely chopped
  • 6 cloves Garlic, Pressed
  • 1 whole Bay Leaf
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1 pinch Pepper
  • ½ teaspoons Salt, More To Taste
  • 1 teaspoon Onion Powder

Soak beans overnight in 6-8 cups hot water. Drain in the morning.
Place soaked beans, 6 fresh cups of water, chopped veggies, seasonings and ham bone in your slow cooker. (I did a big pot on the stove since I doubled it)
Cook on low for 8 hours, or until you can’t take the suspense any longer!  Remove bay leaf and ham bone. Taste and re-season as necessary.

Serve with Nana’s Perfect Cornbread, found HERE.

BONE appetite!

{Oh my goodness, I totally just cracked myself up right there….}

~T

 

Shared with the Ultimate Beans and Rice Linky Party

Leftover Chili Solution: Nacho Supremes

When I was a kid, I loved it when my mom had leftover Chili because she’d make it into this delicious meal. The homemade creamy cheese sauce MAKES this dish!

Nacho Supremes

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Ingredients
  • 1 stick Butter
  • ¾ cups Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 3-½ cups Whole Milk, Or More As Needed
  • 2 pounds Velveeta Cheese
  • Yellow Corn Chips, To Serve
  • 10 cups (or More) Warm Leftover Chili
  • Optional Garnish: Tomatoes, Sour Cream, Lettuce Shreds

Melt butter in a large family skillet. Slowly whisk in flour and salt until it makes a paste. Slowly add milk, stirring constantly and until thickened. Add cubed Velveeta and stir until melted. Add up to 1/2 cup milk more at the end to thin down the cheese if it’s too thick.

Serve over a plate of chips and Chili and garnish per your taste. Delicious!

~T

Update picture: 2-15-13

IMG_1756.jpg

Crock Pot Kraut & Bean Soup

This is post 2 for today, head back a post for Destiny’s post: “The Heart of Worship”.

 I adapted this recipe from my good friend, Mrs. Baker’s blog.  The second I saw it, I knew I HAD to make it.  I am intrigued by sauerkraut and I have to tell you something….this is BY FAR, the number 1 best soup I have EVER MADE.

PROMISE me you will try this!  I am not even kidding you, we GOBBLED it up!  {As in 2 bowls each, including the kids!}

  The Kraut cooks away to a sweet, mild flavor, which melds in your mouth with the smoky sausage, hearty beans and hint of dill.

Oh. My. Stinkin. Word.

  I want to go make this again right now!!!!!!!!!!!!

Crock Pot Kraut & Bean Soup

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  • 4 cups Diced Raw Unpeeled Potatoes
  • 2 cans (14 Oz Each) Sauerkraut, Un-drained
  • 1 cup Water (I added more because mine was too thick)
  • 2 packages Kielbasa Sausage, Halved And Sliced
  • 2 cans (15 Oz Each) Northern Beans, Pour Off Top Liquid Only
  • 2 cans (15 Oz Each) Pork And Beans, Un-drained
  • 4 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Dill Weed (I Did A Bit More, Yum!)

In an 8 Qt. crock pot layer potatoes, sauerkraut, water, kielbasa, then beans. Sprinkle brown sugar and dill weed over all.
Cover, cook on high for 3-4 hours, or until potatoes are soft. Make sure you stir a few times during cooking, adding another 1/2 cup water as needed if it appears too thick.
Oh my word, this is seriously my new FAVORITE soup! It was so sweet & savory, big enough to feed a crowd and is OH SO GOOD!

{This makes a HUUUUUGE batch, so it can be easily halved and put into a 4 Qt crock pot as well.}

Repeat after me, ok?

Fill in the blank with your name…….

I, ________________, do hereby PROMISE to give this soup a try, even though I think sauerkraut is stinky and gross because I love Tonya and I trust her Foodie Opinion.

  See, that wasn’t so hard!  Now go…….make this soup, then report back to me how much you loved it!

~T  :)

Wild Rice & Potato Soup

   Be sure to check out Post 1 for today: Old Timey Photos.

  This is a family favorite! And it’s SO easy, just make some rice, open a few cans and dump!  Creamy, hearty and delicious!

Wild Rice & Potato Soup

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Ingredients

  • 1 box (6 Oz) Uncle Bens Long Grain Rice, Cooked According To Package
  • 1 package (5.4 Oz) Lipton’s Mushroom Rice, Cooked According To Packet
  • 1 cup Diced Onion
  • 2 cups Diced Celery
  • 2 packages (3 Oz Each) Real Bacon Pieces
  • 2 cans (8 Oz. Can) Mushroom Pieces And Juices
  • 2 cans (10.75 Oz. Can) Cream Of Potato Soup
  • 1 can (10.75 Oz. Can) Cream Of Celery
  • 1 can (10.75 Oz. Can) Cream Of Mushroom
  • 2 cans (10.75 Oz. Can) Chicken Broth
  • 2 cups Shredded Cheese
  • 1 quart Half-and-half

Cook rice according to directions on the packages; set aside. Sautee onions and celery in the bottom of a large pot (8-quart pot) over medium heat. Add all remaining ingredients (including the cooked rice) to the pot except the half-and-half. Heat through. Remove from heat and add half-and-half. Then place back on the stovetop over medium-low heat and warm until serving. Don’t boil or this soup will curdle. Makes a nice BIG batch!

Tastes best with a loaf of crusty French bread with an herb and garlic butter.

Dig in!

~T

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