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Archive for the month “April, 2012”

Being Thrifty – Hearty Tomato Rice Soup

Since I made a bunch of brown rice a few nights ago to go with the Garlic-Lime Chicken, I had a container full of it in the fridge that I didn’t want to go to waste, and I knew I wanted to make a soup.  I found a recipe online for Stuffed Pepper Soup, but I added my own spin to it to come up with something on my own using up ingredients I had on hand that needed to be eaten.  The result was a excellent hearty soup, and the best part was that it didn’t require any trip to the grocery store!

Here’s my recipe for Hearty Tomato Rice Soup!

1 lb package of ground chicken

olive oil

1 chopped onion

1 diced green pepper

1 diced red pepper

2 roma tomatoes

2 stalks of celery, diced

2-3 garlic cloves, minced

1 14.5 oz can chicken broth

2 cups chicken boullion/stock

1 29 oz can diced tomatoes (don’t drain)

1 small can tomato sauce

1 small can tomato paste

Dried Basil

Dried Oregano

Dried Parsley

Salt and Pepper to taste

2 cups cooked brown rice

In a large stock pot, brown the  chicken until done.  Add all of the vegetables and cook for about 5 minutes.  Add the liquids, tomatoes, sauce, paste.  Add seasonings to your liking (I probably used about 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp of them).  Bring to a boil and let simmer for at least 15 minutes (I baked some biscuits during this time).  During the last 5 minutes, add the rice.  Heat through and serve.


Indoor/Outdoor Cookout – Bison and Ribs!

Well, we had friends over last night and our usual fare is chicken on the grill.  For a change of pace, I suggested to the hubby that we grill up the buffalo patties we’ve had in the freezer, and I saw a delectable recipe for baby back ribs on Pinterest (and I’m not usually that interested in ribs but these looked pretty darn good) that I wanted to try.  So, bison and ribs it was.

The hubby took the patties and remade them into his own concoction.  Since I wasn’t looking over his shoulder I don’t know the exact amounts, but these very yummy bison burgers were made with:

1 1/2 lbs of ground bison

chopped onion

1 egg

2 egg whites

bread crumbs

a few dashes of worchestershire sauce

Basically he created the recipe with his hands, using texture to determine the necessary amounts until he felt it was the right consistency.  He then grilled these babies up and they were very good!  Moist!  They stayed nice and thick since buffalo is so lean.  And the worchestershire sauce gave them a great flavor.

My contribution to the meal was the slow cooked ribs.  Very easy to make, and they turned out great.  I followed the recipe exactly.  I used about 4 1/2 lbs of ribs and slow cooked them for about 6 1/2 hours.  The BBQ sauce I used was Famous Daves’ Rich and Sassy.  I tried to be careful with them for the 2nd step which was to put them in the broiler, but as with all meat in the slow cooker, these really were falling right off the bone.  So as you can see I had them in quite a few pieces.  But it didn’t matter…they still tasted very good!

And yes, I set off the alarms.

Here are my ribs, and here is the recipe from the Mmm is for Mommy blog.

Yummy Chicken Dish – Garlic-Lime Chicken

Well, I must thank Pinterest for helping me find a bunch of interesting recipes these days, most of which have been desserts that I really shouldn’t be eating in the first place!    That site is so addicting!  A few days ago I happened to come across a pin for Garlic-Lime Chicken.  I also happened to have 2 chicken breasts thawed in the fridge that needed to be used…and pronto….so it was perfect timing.

Here is the link to Garlic-Lime Chicken from the Random Anderson blog (which I also spent a fair amount of time on reading some of her other posts.  It’s a nice blog….you should check it out.)   I will definitely be making this recipe again, especially since the hubby said “This is good chicken.  You should make it again.”    It was very yummy!  And super easy to prepare.  I didn’t want an overpowering garlic taste, so I did omit the garlic in the second step, however I did sprinkle on a little Tastefully Simple Garlic Garlic.  The lime juice adds just the right amount of “zip” to this dish as well.  (It reminded me a little bit of Buca di Beppo’s Lemon Chicken.)  I served it with plain brown rice.  While the hubby doctored that up with salsa and cheese, I used up the sauce from the chicken on mine and it was good.

I’m wondering if there is a way to bake this instead of frying, which would save on some calories.    The butter flavor definitely adds something to the dish tho, and baking would probably lose the sauce.  And might dry out the chicken.  Not sure.  I would definitely put a few pats of butter on top of the chicken while it bakes.  Maybe I’ll try it that way next time to see what happens.

In the meantime, here’s a pic of Garlic-Lime Chicken while it was cookin’ on the stove.  Since my chicken breasts were a little thick, I did pound them down a bit to ensure they’d be cooked through.

Slow Cooker Sunday – Awesome Crockpot Roast Beef

I should have bought a bigger roast, as I never seem to have as much for leftovers as I anticipate!  This is a SUPER easy recipe.  Five ingredients total, and that includes the water that goes into the pot.  Literally you dump the 3 dried flavor packets over the meat (and I put my meat in frozen, too) and pour the water around it.  It’s THAT simple.

I wanted some veggies without the hassle, too, so I tossed in some cut up carrots and potatoes about 1/2 way through the cooking time, and they turned out just right.  I would make this again.  I have never used brown gravy packets before, but I think I’ve found my new best friend.  There was no need to do the flour or cornstarch and water trick to thicken the gravy.  It was perfect as is.  When the hubby says “you should make this again” I know it’s good!

Here’s the recipe, and my photo below.

Soup-er Easy Italian Wedding Soup!

I wanted to take a stab at making Italian Wedding Soup since it’s one of my hubby’s favorites.  So I found a recipe online and modified it a little based on the reviews it got, and by the ingredients I had on hand.  I knew I wanted to use frozen meatballs vs. making them from scratch like the original recipe called for.  The result – a really good soup that was quick and easy to make!  Here’s the recipe based on my modifications:

Italian Wedding Soup

20-22 Turkey meatballs, frozen

1 32 oz carton of chicken stock

1 14.5 ounce can of chicken stock

1 c. beef broth

2 stalks of celery, chopped thin

3 carrots, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 c. (approx) fresh spinach, sliced

1/2 cup uncooked orzo pasta

olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

grated romano/parmesan cheese, optional


Start a pot of water boiling to cook the orzo.  I cooked mine (it was whole wheat) for 9 minutes, then drained.

While the pasta was in the works, I chopped the celery, carrots and garlic.  I used a mezzaluna to chop up the spinach.  Saute the garlic and vegetables (not including the spinach) in a little bit of olive oil for just a few minutes.

Add the beef broth and the chicken stock.  Bring to a boil.   Add the spinach and then the cooked orzo.

While the stock is heating up, broil the frozen meatballs under a broiler on high until nicely browned.   Add the meatballs to the soup and let simmer for a few minutes for the flavors to combine.  Serve with grated cheese on top along with some crusty Italian bread.

Here’s the photo of mine!

Italian Wedding Soup

Italian Wedding Soup

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