Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Mexican Marinade

Using marinades is an easy way to enhance the
flavor of meats . . . and brings a versatility to your dishes.

Great marinade for grilled chicken served paired with
mexican rice and a salad!

This is a basic recipe . . . add seasonings, garlic, peppers, onions or
whatever you prefer.  If you desire a less spicy marinade, use the plain
version of vegetable juice.

I'm not sure where this recipe originally came from . . . it is a part
of my recipe collection that I have collected over many years. 


1 (5 1/2-ounce) can spicy eight-vegetable juice
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
splash of hot sauce (if desired)


Pierce meat with fork several times on both sides.

Prepare Mexican Marinade. 

Add meat, turning to coat with marinade. 

Cover dish or seal bag and refrigerate, turning meat occasionally, at least 8 hours but no longer than 24 hours.

Cook on the grill, oven or stove . . . whatever you prefer.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Asian Pepper Steak

  • 1/2 cup ready-to-use beef broth
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 to 1-1/2 pounds beef top or bottom round steak, cut into 1/4-inch strips
  • 1 medium-sized red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch strips
  • 1/4 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 scallions (green onions), sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced

  1. In a small bowl, combine broth, soy sauce, cornstarch, and ginger; mix well and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat and sauté beef 2 to 3 minutes, or until browned.
  3. Add bell pepper, mushrooms, scallions, and garlic, and cook 4 to 5 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.
  4. Add broth mixture to skillet and cook 2 to 3 minutes, or until sauce thickens.

Source:  Mr. Food

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Honey Chicken

I love chinese take out!

Honey Chicken is one of those items that I usually
order to go with my fried rice and egg rolls.

This recipe is so quick and easy, especially if you
use the chicken tenderloins that come in a bag
frozen . . . defrost and prepare!

Now I just need to learn how to make awesome
fried rice . . . still haven't found a good recipe :(

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup sesame seeds
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon soy sauce

  1. In a large bowl, make a batter by combining the flour, baking powder, salt, and water; mix well.
  2. In a large deep skillet, toast the sesame seeds over medium-high heat, until golden. Remove from the skillet and set aside.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium, add 1/4 inch oil to the skillet, and heat the oil until hot but not smoking. Dip the chicken pieces in the batter, coating completely, then cook in batches for 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until golden. Drain on a paper towel-lined platter.
  4. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, warm the honey, garlic, and soy sauce over low heat for 4 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Place the chicken in a large bowl and pour the warm honey sauce over it. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, and toss until the chicken is well coated. Serve immediately.

Source:  Mr. Food

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Creamy Cavatelli

I'm always looking for new pasta recipes
that are quick, easy and relatively inexpensive.
This one is perfect with combinations that
are new to me.

  • 1 pound frozen cavatelli pasta
  • 2 (10-3/4-ounce) cans condensed cream of celery soup
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 medium-sized tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 (3-ounce) package sliced pepperoni, each slice cut in half
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder

  1. In a large pot, cook pasta according to package directions; drain and set aside in a colander.
  2. In the same pot, combine remaining ingredients and heat over medium-low heat for 10 to 12 minutes, or until bubbling.
  3. Return pasta to pot and toss to coat. Heat 2 to 3 more minutes, or until heated through. Serve immediately.

Source:  Mr. Food

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Broccoli and Cheese Manicotti

Manicotti is one of my favorite meals.  

This recipe is my basic way of making this dish 
. . . what I like about this recipe is the addition
 of broccoli to the cheese mixture.  Check out
the tips at the end of the recipe!

  • 8 ounces manicotti shells
  • 1 (32-ounce) container ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded mozzarella chesse, divided
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped broccoli, thawed and well drained
  • 2 cups spaghetti sauce

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9- x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. Cook manicotti shells according to package directions; drain, rinse, and drain again.
  3. In a large bowl, combine ricotta cheese, 1 cup mozzarella cheese, the Parmesan cheese, egg, salt, and pepper. Add broccoli; mix well.
  4. Fill each manicotti shell with about 1/3 cup cheese mixture and place in prepared baking dish. Pour spaghetti sauce over stuffed shells and sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese.
  5. Bake 35 to 40 minutes, or until hot and bubbling.


  • For an easy way to fill the manicotti shells, place the cheese mixture in a resealable plastic storage bag. Snip off a corner of the bag and squeeze the cheese mixture into the shells.
  • For an extra burst of flavor, add 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg to the cheese mixture.

Source:  Mr. Food

Monday, June 13, 2011

Golden Chicken Casserole

The perfect recipe for leftover chicken and those basic
pantry items.  I always keep Bisquick on hand for making
quick biscuits  or these type of recipes. 

Make it light by substituting the "light" or "no-fat" versions 
of ingredients like chicken soup, sour cream and milk.

  • 1 (10¾-ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cups milk, divided
  • 3 cups diced cooked chicken
  • 1 (16-ounce) package frozen mixed vegetables
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/4 cup biscuit baking mix
  • 1/4 cup cornmeal
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. In a 9- x 13-inch baking dish, combine soup, sour cream, and 1/2 cup milk; mix well. Add chicken, vegetables, salt, and pepper; mix well.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine baking mix, cornmeal, egg, and remaining 3/4 cup milk; mix well then spoon over chicken mixture and sprinkle with cheese.
  4. Bake 30 to 35 minutes, or until edges are golden and chicken is warmed through.

Source:  Mr. Food

Friday, June 10, 2011

Carne Asada (Zesty Steak)

Although I am not really into beef, this is one of
those dishes where I will make an exception.  

Carne Asada is awesome with black beans
and rice . . . and don't forget some good bread.

  • 1/4 cup original flavor seasoned rice vinegar
  • Zest of 2 limes
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
  • 2 pounds skirt steak

  1. In a large resealable plastic storage bag, combine the rice vinegar, lime zest and juice, the olive oil, garlic, oregano, salt, and cilantro, if desired; mix well. Add the steaks to the bag, and seal. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
  2. Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add the steaks, discarding any marinade, and cook for 4 to 5 minutes per side, or until desired doneness. Slice thinly and serve.

Source:  Mr. Food

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Frozen Mojito Pie

Since our lime tree is bearing fruit this year (for the first time) and loaded with limes, I'm on the lookout for lime recipes.

This recipe can easily be adapted for a low fat diet by substituting cream cheese and whipped topping with the no fat or low fat varieties.  We have recently switched to no fat cream cheese and honestly can't tell much of a difference in taste, but it makes a huge difference in calories and fat.  I have also started experimenting with butter substitutes that you can cook with and the results have been very encouraging, although I have not experimented with baking yet.  Butter can also be substituted with coconut oil, which is solid like butter or shortening.

I'm not sold on the pretzel crust . . . any ideas?  I was thinking along the lines of a graham cracker crust . . .

1 cup finely crushed pretzels
5 tablespoons butter, melted
1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
Zest from 1 large lime
Juice from 1 large lime (if the limes you are using are really small, use two of them)
2 to 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint (I like it minty, so I use 3 tbsp. of mint)
2 cups Whipped Topping

In a medium sized bowl mix together the pretzel crumbs and the butter.
Press the pretzels onto the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan, or a round pan lined with plastic wrap.
Freeze the crust for at least one hour.
In your mixer’s bowl, beat together the cream cheese, sugar, zest, juice, and mint. Mix until well blended.
Whisk in the whipped topping.
Spoon the filling over the crust.
Freeze for at least 6 hours. Over night is best.
Carefully remove the pie from the pan and top it with some crushed pretzels and thin slices of lime.
Keep it frozen.

Source:  Foodbeast

Monday, June 6, 2011

Pina Colada Pie

Sandra Lee from the Food Network's Semi Homemade always
comes up with awesome recipes that are quick and easy!  When
I watched her program and saw her make this pie, I had to find
the recipe so I could share it.  Can't wait to try it out :)


  • 3/4 cup pineapple-coconut nectar (recommended: Kern's)
  • 1 cup light coconut milk (recommended: Thai Kitchen)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons rum extract, divided
  • 1 (3.4-ounce) box instant vanilla pudding and pie filling (recommended: Jello-O)
  • 1 cup shredded coconut meat
  • 8 ounces whipped topping, divided
  • 1 (9-inch) pie crust, baked (recommended: Marie Callender's)
  • 1/4 cup shredded coconut meat, toasted, for garnish


In a large bowl, combine nectar, coconut milk, and 1 teaspoon rum extract. Sprinkle pudding mix over liquid and whisk for 2 minutes. Fold in coconut and 1/2 of the whipped topping.
Pour into pre-baked pie crust and chill in refrigerator for at least 3 hours.
Combine remaining whipped topping with 1/2 teaspoon rum extract. Top chilled pie with whipped topping and toasted coconut.

Recipe and Photo Source:  Food Network

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Pecan Pie Pockets

While I'm supposed to be focusing on healthy food recipes,
 watching the Food Network Channel lures me to the
 sinful stuff that I'm craving.

  Paula Deen always comes through with some new awesome
 treats to try out for those times you just gotta be bad with food.

Photo and recipe source:  The Food Network Website


  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Flour, for dusting
  • 1 premade pie crust
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten
  • Confectioners' sugar


In a Dutch oven or deep fryer, heat the oil over medium heat to 350 degrees F.
In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup, butter and eggs. Stir in the pecans, vanilla and salt. Bring to a boil over medium heat, reduce the heat and simmer 10 minutes.
On a lightly floured surface, unroll the pie crust. Cut out rounds using a 4 1/2-inch cutter. Re-roll the dough as needed. Repeat the procedure with the remaining dough. Place 1 pie crust round on a clean, flat surface. Lightly brush the edges of the crust with the beaten egg yolk. Place 1 heaping tablespoon of pecan mixture in the center of the round. Fold the dough over the filling, pressing the edges with a fork to seal. Repeat with the remaining rounds and pecan mixture.
Fry the pies in batches until lightly browned, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels. Lightly dust with confectioners' sugar, if desired.
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