Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Cheesy Chicken Ranch Lasagna

**This recipe came from my friend Jennifer M. She sent it over when we were doing a recipe swap online. It was fun to see a new and different recipe.**

Cheesy Chicken Ranch Lasagna

2 cans evaporated milk (not fat-free)
1 1oz pkg Ranch dressing mix
3 cups cubed, cooked chicken
1/8 tsp pepper
1 16oz lasagna noodles, cooked (I only used 12 noodles)
2 cups cheddar cheese
2 cups mozarella cheese

Cook chicken and noodles first. Once noodles are done, rinse in cold water and set aside. Combine evaporated milk and ranch dressing mix in a saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring frequently until dry ingredients are dissolved. Stir in Chicken and pepper. Simmer, uncovered 25 minutes (the directions say not to do less than 25 minutes), stirring frequently. In a well buttered or greased 9x13 baking dish, layer the lasagna noodles, sauce, and cheese. Repeat.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

Cook Penne Pasta instead of Lasagna noodles. Make sauce as directed and add the mozarella cheese and 1 cup of the cheddar cheese and noodles. Stir and let the sauce melt the cheese until you have a nice creamy sauce. Add to baking dish, and sprinkle remaining cheese over top. Bake in oven for about 10 minutes until the cheese has melted.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Cranberry Mousse

If you're not very fond of cranberries, but like the idea of having them because they are traditional and festive, then you might like this recipe as much as I do. It's become a regular part of our Thanksgiving and/or Christmas meal.

1 lg. (6 oz.) box raspberry jello (sugar free works perfectly)
1 8 oz. can crushed pineapple
1 8 oz. carton Cool Whip
1 C. chopped walnuts
1 lg. can whole-berry cranberries

Make jello using only 2 cups water. (You can use pineapple juice as part of the 2 cups.) Let jello set until just starting to gel, not solid. Empty can of cranberries, Cool Whip, drained pineapple and walnuts in a large bowl. Add jello and mix all together. Best if refrigerated a couple more hours.

This makes a pretty large batch. If you don't have a lot to feed I would half it.

Make the cranberry bowl by freezing water in between two bowls and letting cranberries float in the water. Add enough water to the top bowl to make it heavy enough to give you the thickness you want.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Yam Crisp--This was a yummy sweet yam with a nice pretty thick crunchy topping.
Yam mixture
3 cups yams cooked mashed by hand (peel off skin)
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs (well beaten)
1 stick butter (room temperature)

Crust mixture
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup flour
1 cup pecans (chopped)
1/3 stick butter

In mixing bowl, combine crust mixture ingredients and stir well. Set aside.

In another mixing bowl add all the ingredients listed above for yam mixture. Stir all ingredients together until well blended.

Pour yam mixture into a lightly buttered baking dish (9x9). Bake for approx 30 minutes at 350 degrees or until hot in the center.

Remove from oven and spread crust mixture over the top. Turn on the broiler and place dish back in over close to the top of the oven. Brown the crust mixture

Let stand 30 minutes, then enjoy.

Yam Filled Pumpkin--This one was a sweet yam mixture, and the topping on top reminded me of homemade german chocolate cake frosting. It was delicious.
**I personally would not make this in a pumpkin. I would make this in a 9x9 dish.

Yam mixture
3 cups yams cooked and mashed
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
2 qt size pumpkin-cleaned and hollowed out

1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup flaked coconut
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup butter, melted

Combine all the ingredients for the yam mixture. Blend until smooth. Fill hollowed out pumpkin with the yam mixture.

Mix all the topping ingredients together. stir well. Sprinkle over the yam mixture.

Place the filled pumpkin in a greased baking dish. Top with the lid to the pumpkin and bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes. Remove lid and bake an additional 15 minutes. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Potato Soup

5 cups cut red potatoes
2 1/2 cups water
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 cups ham
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese + more for garnish.

In a large pot, cook potatoes in water until tender. Drain water from the potatoes, saving 1 1/2 cups of the water and returning to the pot with the potatoes.
In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Remove from heat and add pepper and flour and mix well.
Put all ingredients in with the potatoes and water and cook on medium-low, simmering for 25 minutes. Add cheese and simmer for 5 more minutes. Dish into bowls and sprinkle with cheese if desired. Makes about 5-6 servings.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Chicken Noodle Soup

2 T butter
1 c sliced celery
1 c chopped carrot
1/2 t onion powder (or 1/2 cup chopped onion if you prefer)
1 small diced potato
1 teaspoon thyme (if you don't have this go to the store, do not leave this out)
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning (again, go to the store)
4 cans (14 oz) chicken broth
2 chicken bouillon cubes
1/2 lb or 1 1/2 c noodles (penne are my favorite)
2 c cooked chicken, shredded or diced
1/2-3/4 c water

First I like to cook my chicken in a slow cooker on high for 4-6 hours. Put two small chicken breasts in, fill the slow cooker about 1/3 full with water and sprinkle in 1 1/2 teaspoons of onion salt. After the chicken is done, either shred or dice and set aside. On high heat, melt butter in a large pot and saute celery, carrot and onion powder for two minutes. Add potato, thyme, poultry seasoning, chicken broth and bouillon. Bring all to a boil. Add the noodles and chicken and simmer on low for 20 minutes. Depending on how thick you want this to be, add up to 3/4 c water. It's pretty thick if you don't add any extra water due to the noodles.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Shredded Beef Tacos

This recipe is great for all kinds of shredded beef. Take advantage of sales (Buy 1 Get 1 Free) and cook up some extra to store in your freezer for future meals. For plain shredded beef, omit the taco seasoning. You can replace it with a packet of onion soup mix, if you like.

Shredded Beef Tacos

3-5 pounds chuck roast (you can use 2 small roasts or 1 big one)

1 packet taco seasoning

1 onion

1 can beef broth

Preheat crock pot on LOW. Pour beef broth into preheating crock pot.

Sear roast on all sides & place in crock pot.

Sprinkle roast with taco seasonings - use it all! Slice onion & place on top of roast.

Cook in crock pot for 8 hours on LOW.

Remove roast from crock pot & place on cutting board. Using 2 forks, pull meat apart until shredded. Remove fat & grisle and throw it away.

Serve with your favorite taco toppings!

This meat freezes well & is great to use in casseroles or more tacos later. Enjoy!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

YUMMY pizza on the BBQ

Okay, I'll start with the yummy dough recipe (sorry my lack of photography skills really does this no justice).

Herb Pizza Dough
½ cup warm water
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 Tablespoon yeast

Combine first three ingredients and set aside for 5 minutes.

3 ½ cups flour (white, wheat or combination of both)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon oregano
3 Tablespoons Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 cup cold water
1 ½ Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Combine dry ingredients then add yeast mixture and mix well. You can let it rise if you want but you don't have to. You can also let it rise a few times and it won't be a problem. Spread on cookie sheet add toppings and cook at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. Makes 1 cookie sheet pizza.

Now if you want to bake the dough in the oven, fine. However, I just discovered how to grill it on the barbecue and oh my is it tasty...Click here for directions.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Meat Sauce over French Bread (which is a title I had to make up since it's a recipe I made up)

I posted a recipe for freezable meat sauce awhile ago & mentioned (as another dinner option) you could serve this meat sauce over french bread & topped with mozzarella cheese. We made it tonight & I wanted to share the results! :)

Paired with a salad it's a yummy, super-quick meal.

Defrost meat sauce. (I used 2 cups for 1/2 french loaf above.)

Heat meat sauce through in microwave or stovetop while hollowing out french loaf.

This is where I went wrong tonight! I cut the loaf in half before hollowing it out. Bad idea - it totally fell apart when we tried to cut it.

Use a whole loaf, just cut off the top third & then hollow out about an inch down. Leave at least half the french bread loaf intact at the bottom for stability.

Partially hollow out loaf of french bread.

Spoon meat sauce into hollowed-out bread & mound it up a bit.

Top with slices of mozzarella cheese (or grated).

Bake 15 minutes at 400*. Serve immediately.

(FYI - Above you see 1/2 french bread with just pizza sauce & cheese for my picky eaters)

Here's the original meat sauce recipe:

I have this meat sauce in my freezer all the time. When I make it, I make 1-2 extra batches & freeze them flat in Ziploc bags. Just pull one out of the freezer in the morning & serve that night for dinner. Love the convenience! Love the taste too! :)

1 pound ground turkey (I've never tried ground beef)
1/4 - 1/2 cup chopped onion (for a mild onion, use 1/2 cup - for a stronger onion, use 1/4 cup)
1 T fresh minced garlic
salt & pepper to taste
1 can red kidney beans, drained & rinsed
1 can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained & rinsed
4 cups spaghetti sauce (your favorite)
1/4 cup water

Brown ground turkey in a large skillet. Halfway through browning, add chopped onion. Cook until turkey is thoroughly browned & onion is translucent.

Stir in garlic & beans. Add salt & pepper sparingly. (just a few shakes is plenty - or none at all)

Pour in spaghetti sauce & stir to mix well. Only add water if sauce looks too thick - never more than 1/4 cup. Bring to soft boil.

Cover & reduce heat.
Simmer for 15 minutes and serve!

Allow to cool to room temperature.
Spoon into gallon-size Ziploc bag. Push out all the air, seal & lay flat in freezer. On a cookie sheet is great, but on top of something flat like a pizza or pie box is good too.
Once frozen, you can stand it upright & it takes up less than an inch of space.

FOR VEGGIE OPTION:I've used portabella mushrooms, sliced or roughly chopped, instead of the ground turkey. I'm not a mushroom fan, but it was really good!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Chicken Enchiladas

********This comes from Jenna's blog*******

**Our family tried these enchilada's from Jenna's blog page (a fellow author to this blog) and we all quite enjoyed them. I do have to say that if I made them again, I may possibly try adding some green chiles to the chicken mixture, although we liked them just the way they were.

Creamy Enchiladas
2 cups chicken, cooked and shredded
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 large onion diced up (I did not add this because I don't love onions)
1 clove garlic crushed
8 oz. tomato sauce
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. sugar
3 cups heavy cream
5 chicken bouillon cubes
1/3 cup olive oil
12-18 corn tortillas
1 1/2 cups monterey jack grated cheese

--Saute onion in 2 Tbsp. oil until translucent. Stir in garlic, tomato sauce, salt, sugar and chicken. Cover and simmer 5 minutes. In a large saucepan heat cream. Dissolve bouillon in cream; set aside. Dip tortillas, one at a time, in oil turning once for a few seconds to soften; drain on paper towel. Dip tortilla in cream mixture; place on flat surface. Put 3 Tbsp. chicken mixture and roll up. **I also added cheese before I wrapped it up. That was not part of the original recipe. Place rolled tortilla seam side down in 9x13 baking dish. Pour any remaining sauce over enchiladas. Cover with grated cheese. Bake @ 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Chicken with Cornbread dumplings

This recipe came from the Raleys/Bel-Air/Nob-Hill magazine. I never heard of Raleys until I moved to Northern California.....but anyways, this meal was a welcome change. It was something I have never made and never would have eve thought of doing. It was not a meal that I thought was fabulous, but it was good and everyone liked it.
Chicken with cornbread Dumplings

3-1.2 oz packets Knorr Roasted Chicken Gravy Mix
4 cups water
2 stalks celery-sliced
1 small onion, peeled and chopped
2 tsp Spice Island Fines Herbs (parsley, chives, chervil, tarragon)
2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken meat (I just cooked chicken in chicken broth)
2 1/2 cups C&W petite peas, corn, petite carrots and snap peas
1 (6.5oz) pouch cornbread mix (I used a box of jiffy cornbread mix)
1/3 cup milk
2 TB melted butter
1 egg
1/4 cup minced green onion

Whisk together gravy mix and water in a stockpot and bring to a boil. Add celery, onion and herbs. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes stirring frequently.

Add chicken and vegetable blend. Meanwhile prepare cornbread batter with milk, butter and egg. Stir in green onions and let sit 5 minutes.

Bring chicken mixture back to a boil, drop cornbread mixture in large spoonfuls on top of boiling soup. Cook uncovered for 10 minutes over medium heat. Cover and reduce to simmer and cook another 10 minutes.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Southwest Tortilla Soup

**I have never made this soup without someone wanting the recipe. Most kids do not like tomatoes, but every child I know eats this soup.** Thanks Jennifer M. for the recipe!

Southwest Tortilla Soup

2-3 cans chicken broth

3-4 chicken breasts

2 cans diced tomatoes with green chiles (I do not like ro-tel at all, not even the mild. They tend to be too spicy.)

2-3 TB taco seasoning

1 can white beans drained

1 can black beans drained

grated cheese

tortilla chips- crumbled

Cook chicken in chicken broth, and shred. Add both cans of tomatoes, taco seasoning, and both cans of beans. Bring to a boil. Done.

Serve soup in a bowl with grated cheese on top and crushed tortilla chips.

Beefy Fettucine

Beefy Fettucine
1 lb stew meat chunks
2 cans reduced sodium beef broth
onion salt
cornstarch mixed with water
fettucine noodles

In a skillet brown the stew chunks while seasoning with onion salt. Add 2 cans beef broth. Bring to a boil, cover with lid and reduce heat to a simmer for about an hour or until the beef chunks become soft enough to shred. Return to high heat after meat has been shred and add cornstarch mixture to thicken to gravy consistency.

While the meat is cooking boil the fettucine noodles and cook according to pkg directions.

Serve noodles on plate with beef mixture on top.

**You could use leftover roast, or you could buy the canned Hereford beef chunks to make this recipe in a snap**

Taco Cups

**This recipe came from Sandra Lee Semi-homemade**
Taco Cups
1/2lb ground beef
2Tb taco seasoning
1 12oz can refrigerated flaky butter biscuits, Pillsbury
grated cheddar cheese
sour cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. Place a biscuit in each muffin opening patting the biscuit dough carefully up the sides.
In a skillet brown ground beef, drain, and add taco seasoning with a small amount of water. Cook about 5 minutes.
Spoon meat mixture in each muffin and top with cheese.
Bake for 10-12 minutes. Serve with sour cream and salsa.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

New Allergy Blog

My son was just diagnosed with severe egg and peanut allergies so I've pulled several resources together and created a new blog, which can be found here. Feel free to pass on to anyone you know who may have these allergies.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Easy Cheezy Pasta Bake

I got this recipe from Family Fun Magazine a few years ago. For 20 minutes prep, and 20 minutes in the oven, there's a BIG reward! SUPER yummy, easy & from items you probably have in your fridge & pantry right now.

I like to make it in the morning & keep it in the fridge when I know I'll have a busy day. Just pop it in the oven for 30 minutes, serve it with a salad & you're good to go!

Easy Cheezy Pasta Bake

1 lb dried pasta - the recipe calls for ziti, but I just use whatever I have on-hand.

15-16 oz part-skim ricotta cheese

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

3 cups (or 26 oz jar/can) spaghetti sauce

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

OPTIONAL: 1 lb italian sausage, browned

  1. Preheat oven to 350* Grease a 9x13" dish.
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain.
  3. In large bowl, stir together cooked pasta, ricotta and 1/2 of the mozzarella cheese (and italian sausage, if you're using it) until well-blended.

4. Pour 1/2 of the spaghetti sauce, covering the bottom of the greased 9x13" pan.
5. Spread pasta/cheese mixture over spaghetti sauce.
6. Top with remaining spaghetti sauce. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese & remaining mozzarella.
7. Bake uncovered for 20-30 minutes (use the full 30 minutes if you've refrigerated the casserole), until the casserole bubbles on the edges.


Monday, March 23, 2009

Mom's French Toast

This recipe is definitely NOT healthy - but it sure is YUMMY!!

We like it best with Sara Lee Brown Sugar Cinnamon bread, but my mom made it with cinnamon-raisin bread when I was growing up. Any firm, sweet bread would do, I think - but we've only used the breads I've mentioned so I can't guarantee results with other breads.

NOTE: with both milks, I use fat-free. You can't tell the difference so why not, right? But if you want to, full-fat or regular works just fine. Use whatever you have on-hand.

Mom's French Toast

1 lb loaf Sara Lee Brown Sugar Cinnamon Bread (or cinnamon raisin bread)
Butter or margarine for the skillet

* Preheat skillet to 350*

* Mix together WELL in a bowl large enough for dipping your bread slices completely:

1 14-oz can fat-free sweetened condensed milk
1/4 - 1/2 cups skim milk
2 eggs
1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 Tablespoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla
Dash of salt

Whisk above ingredients together until smooth & the same thickness of cold pancake syrup. Add only enough skim milk to achieve this consistency. Don't add too much! You want it thick enough to coat the bread.

* Butter skillet well. (This will carmelize & make your french toast YUMMY! Don't use sprays like Pam. They don't work well & they leave a strange taste behind.)

* Submerge bread slices & allow to drip just a bit before placing in the buttered skillet.

* Cook coated bread slices 3-4 minutes. Turn when browned thoroughly. Cook 1-2 minutes on second side.

* Serve immediately with butter & syrup OR fresh berries & whipped cream.

* Butter skillet between every batch of french toast.
* Cool to room temperature.
* Lay flat (not stacked) on a cookie sheet in the freezer until firm.
* Store stacked in a Ziplock bag in the freezer up to 3 months.
* Heat in microwave or under the broiler in the oven (our favorite).
* Serve as usual.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Taos Chicken and Pasta

I've already posted this one on my own blog...but it's definitely one that needs to be tried by all! This one is from my sister-in-law, Heather (it sure pays to have sister-in-laws that love good recipes!!!!). Believe me, this one is soooo good! It has lots of flavor, and includes one of my favorite ingredients--basil. You can serve it with plain noodles and pour the sauce over the top, or just mix the noodles and sauce together for a casserole-type dish. This one has been fun to take to pot-lucks and socials since usually no one has ever had it before (and I always get people asking for the recipe). It's best served warm.

(Be sure to read all the way to the bottom...I've posted a "long" way to cook it, and a "quick/easy" way to cook it.)

Taos Chicken and Pasta

1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 large bell pepper, cubed
1/2 cup chicken broth (I substitute 1/2 cup water mixed with 1/2 tsp. bouillon)
1 Tbsp. dried basil leaves
1/2 tsp. ginger
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 lb. chicken breasts, raw
1 lb. pasta of choice (bow tie is our favorite)

--Combine soy sauce, broth, oil, basil, ginger and garlic powder. marinate with chicken (cubed) for 2-3 hours, refrigerated. Stir occasionally. Pour off marinade and save. In large skillet, coated with non-stick spray, cook chicken until lightly browned and no longer pink in center. Add bell pepper and saute 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and add marinade to skillet. Stir in cornstarch and cook until thickened. Add back chicken and peppers. Cook pasta according to package directions. Serve over cooked pasta. Serves 8.

I tend to alter the way I make it from the original recipe--mainly for ease and to make it quicker. Often I make it without even marinating the chicken (no longer than just mixing it together). Usually I just mix all the ingredients together and then "stir-fry" all of it together (except the cornstarch) in the pan until the chicken is no longer pink, then I add the cornstarch. I feel like it skips a ton of steps, and still tastes great...but if you're a purist, then you'd better stick to the recipe! (:

One more thing: I've tried playing with the amounts of pasta. When I mix everything together I sometimes feel like the pasta dulls the flavor a bit. Sometimes I put in just slightly less than 1 lb. pasta (maybe about 3/4 of a pound?)...but if you're pouring the sauce over the top of individual servings of noodles, you can easily decide to add more or less to taste.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Corn Tortilla Quiche

I really, really like this recipe.  My sister-in-law, Elizabeth, introduced me to it when I lived in her basement during David's undergrad years.  I think I made it almost weekly for a while!!!  It really is a great dinner, but I suppose it would work fine for a brunch or maybe even a nice breakfast.  I made it for a "recipe share" activity once, and everyone was so excited about it, that I had people telling me for several weeks after that they had tried it and shared it with other friends.

Corn Tortilla Quiche

3/4 pound bulk pork sausage
6 eggs, beaten
5-7 (6-inch) corn tortillas
1/2 cup whipping cream or milk
1/2 cup small curd cottage cheese
1 cup shredded monterey or mozzarella cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp. chili powder (or to taste--I use abt. 1/4 since I have "no spicy" eaters)
1/4 cup chopped canned green chilies
1 Tbsp. dried parsley

--In a skillet, cook the sausage until no longer pink; drain.  Place 4-6 tortillas (I actually adapted it to use more like 6-9 tortillas) in a greased 9-inch pie plate, overlapping and extending 1/2-inch beyond rim.  Place remaining tortilla in the center.  Layer with sausage, cheeses, and chilies.  Combine eggs, cream, cottage cheese, parsley and chili powder; slowly pour over chilies.  The mixture will get under the tortillas on it's own...that's good! Bake @ 350 degrees F for 45 minutes or until the center is set and puffed.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Biscuit-Top Chicken Pot Pie

Sorry I forgot a photo! This one is great for using up leftover veggies or canned & frozen veggies. And it's a 1-dish meal so there's just a little clean-up! This meal doubles well, just increase cooking time by 5-10 minutes each baking time.

Biscuit-Top Chicken Pot Pie

Stir until combined in 9x13" casserole dish:
2 cans cream of broccoli soup
1 cup milk
dash of pepper
1/4 tsp dried thyme

Stir into soup mixture:
2 cups cooked & cut-up chicken (leftover chicken or rotisserie chicken works great!)
4 cups pre-cooked veggies your family likes - we use broccoli, potatoes, carrots, corn, & peas(frozen veg, cooked - or - canned veg, drained - or - leftover veggies in your fridge all work well)

Bake 15 minutes in preheated 400* oven.

Meanwhile, cut into quarters:
1 pkg refrigerated biscuits

After 15 minutes, remove casserole from oven and stir soup/veggie/chicken mixture to distribute heat. Drop biscuit quarters on top.

Bake 15-20 minutes more, until biscuit pieces are browned & filling is bubbling.

Serve immediately.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Rigatoni a la You

**This recipe is from Johnsonville Italian Sausage** Sorry the picture isn't that great.

1 package (5 links) Johnsonville Mild Italian Sausage
1lb pkg rigatoni pasta
3TB olive oil (I only used 1)
2 cloves minced garlic
1 red bell pepper chopped (I always use peppers from the package of frozen tri colored peppers they sell at the store.)
2TB fresh italian parsley, chopped (I didn't have fresh, so I used my dried spice. I only used 1TB and felt like it was plenty.)
1 jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce

Cook sausage links in skillet until completely cooked through. While sausage is cooking, boil the rigatoni according to package directions. In a large pan, heat olive oil, add garlic and peppers and cook until tender crisp. Add the pasta sauce and let it all simmer together for 15 minutes. Slice the sausage in wheels and add to the cooked and drained pasta. Pour the spaghetti sauce mixture over top and stir. Add fresh parsley. (because I used my dried spice, I added it to the noodles with the meat and tossed it before the sauce went in.) I sprinkled parmesan cheese over top and served.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Taco Potato Shells

When you make this meal, you are actually preping yourself for a second meal with the potatoes. The potatoes you are scooping out can be used and diced up for a Potato Cheese or a Baked Potato soup the next night.

Savannah looked at this and said, "Are those chunks of tomato?" I said, "Yes, and you eat chunks of tomato all the time in the tortilla soup. Just try it!" She did try it and ended up eating her whole potato and a half of another one. Avery said, "gross" also and ended up eating the portion we gave her and she wanted more later in the evening. So, this is KID TESTED! Our family really enjoyed it.

You can always healthy this up by using turkey and I have a butter flavor infused grapeseed oil that I might use next time instead of the butter. You could probably use extra virgin olive oil also. I always use the 2% cheddar cheese and light sour cream anyways. So, I hope this isn't too unhealthy of a meal. Your getting rid of 90% of the starchy potato by scooping it away.

Taco Potato Shells
3 Large baking potatoes
1 TB melted butter or margarine
1 pound ground beef
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) petite diced tomatoes, undrained
1 envelope taco seasoning mix
Grated cheddar cheese
sour cream
green onions (I didn't use)

Clean potatoes and pierce and bake at 375 degrees for 1 hour or until tender. Cut potatoes in half lengthwise. Carefully scoop out pulp, leaving a thin shell. Reserve the potato pulp for another recipe.
* I baked my potatoes in the morning and the were cool by time I cut them and scooped out the middle*

Brush the inside and outside of potato shell with melted butter or margarine. Place cut side up on a baking sheet. Bake uncovered at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile in a skillet, cook the ground beef until no longer pink. Drain. Add tomatoes and envelope of taco seasoning. Bring to a boil, then turn off heat.

Spoon meat mixture into potato shells that have just been baked, sprinkle tops with cheddar cheese and return to oven for 5-10 minutes or until cheddar cheese is all melted.

Top with sour cream and onions. Serve


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