Saturday, December 19, 2009

Incredible Cinnamon Buns

This is not my recipe and I do not remember who gave it to me years ago, but these turn out a lot like the rolls served at the malls... very good for breakfast during the decadant holiday season and they disappear fast if you have company :)

1/2 c warm water
2 packages dry yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
1 3-1/2 oz vanilla pudding mix
1/2 c margarine, melted
2 eggs
1 t salt
6 c flour

Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz cream cheese
1/2 c margarine
1 t vanilla
3 c confectioner's sugar
1 T milk

In a small bowl combine water, yeast and sugar. Stir until dissolved. Set aside. In large bowl, take pudding mix and prepare according to package directions. Add margarine, eggs, and salt. Mix well. Then add yeast mixture. Blend. Gradually add flour; knead until smooth.

Place in a large greased bowl. Cover and let rise until doubled. Punch down dough and let rise again.

Then roll out on floured board to 34 x 21-inch size. Take 1 cup soft butter and spread over surface. In small bowl, mix 2 cups brown sugar and 4 teaspoons cinnamon. Sprinkle over top. Roll up very tightly.

With knife, put a notch every 2”. Cut with thread or knife. Place on lightly greased cookie sheet 2” apart. Take hand and lightly press down on each roll. Cover and let rise until double again. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Take out when they start to turn golden. Don’t over bake.

Beat all frosting ingredients together. Frost warm rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting

Makes about 20 very large rolls.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Clean out the Kitchen Minestrone

This is SO flavorful and soul satisfying!

2 cans or 3 cups fresh cooked beans (any kind you like)
1 sweet vidalia or other onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 sweet italian sausages (can be skipped if you're going veggie, but find something with flavor)
2 carrots peeled and chopped
1 parsnip peeled and chopped
1 bunch kale, hard stems removed and chopped
1 large or 2 medium yellow or red bell peppers, seeded and chopped
2 zucchini choped
3 28-oz cans crushed tomatoes
2 14 1/2 oz cans broth - any kind

2 T pesto, or more to taste
2 T oregano, or more to taste
salt and pepper to taste
parmesan cheese

This makes a HUGE batch - get our your biggest pot and prepare to share!

Coat the bottom of the soup pan with olive oil over medium heat. Dump in sausage and brown, chopping up with a wooden spoon as you go. Add onions, garlic, carrots, peston, oregano, some salt, and parsnip, and stir around till they begin to get tender. Toss in kale, peppers, and zucchini and stir around till kale wilts and all veggies are tender. Dump in tomatoes and broth, maybe adding more broth if you need to cover it well, or water works fine too. Bring to a boil for a few minutes, then reduce to simmer. Add more seasonings if you like and serve with a few spoonfuls of pesto and or parmesan cheese and some crusty bread! Very soul satisfying in cool weather! 

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Leftover Turkey Tortilla Soup

1 large jalapeno pepper, chopped
1 large sweet (vidalia or walla walla) onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 T cumin, ore more to taste
salt, pepper
2 cups leftover cooked turkey or chicken, or omit if you are vegetarian
1 32 oz box of broth, or a 2-3 cans
2 cans crushed tomatoes
i bag of frozen corn
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
2 14 1/2 oz cans of beans, I like the black beans
16 oz shredded cheddar cheese
olive oil

Optional garnish, crused tortilla chips, sour cream, chopped avocado

Pour olive oil to coat bottom of large soup pot. Add onions, garlic, jalapeno, a teaspoon of salt or so, and the cumin and stir till onion is cooked. Dump in chicken or turkey and warm up. Add tomatoes, broth, corn, beans, and chopped cilantro. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat, stir in cheese, and simmer for awhile till all the flavors blend. Add more salt, pepper, and cumin to taste. Cumin gives it all the flavor so I usually add a LOT more, but its up to you. Better to start with a little and adjust to your liking!

Serve with crushed chips, a dallop of sour cream, and some chopped avocadoes on top. YUM! Very spicy and warming.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Ann’s Adaptation of Ruth’s Chris Bread Pudding

One bite of this warm bread pudding sends me to heaven!

1 loaf of French bread cut into bite size cubes
2/3 c raisins
1 c of cherries (found near pie filling section of the store – you
don’t want the pie filling, you want cherries in juice)
2 c sugar
1 1/2 t cinnamon
9 eggs
1 1/2 t vanilla
4 c milk
1/2 c butter

Whiskey Sauce:

1 1/2 c milk
2 t melted butter
1 1/2 t cornstarch
1 1/2 t water
1/3 c sugar
2 eggs
1/4 c whiskey

Pudding: Dry out French bread cubes on a cookie sheet in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes. Place in a greased 9 x 13” pan. Drain cherries really well. (The juice is great to drink with seltzer water so don’t waste it!) Sprinkle raisins & drained cherries over the top of the bread. In a large mixing bowl, mix sugar & cinnamon. Add eggs and vanilla, and mix again.

Bring milk and butter to a steam in a saucepan, but do not let boil. Add this to the sugar-egg mixture and beat well. Pour carefully over the bread, raisins, and cherries and carefully fold, using a spatula. Cover with foil and cook at 325 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove foil and carefully stir again, so as not to bread the bread. Bake an additional 40 minutes until golden brown, firm, yet bouncy. Remove from oven, run a knife around the edges and let cool to room temperature. When serving, top with whiskey sauce.

Whiskey Sauce: Pour milk and melted butter in a pan and heat until almost, but not boiling. Mix cornstarch and water. Put sugar and cornstarch mixture in a food processor and process briefly to prevent lumps. Whip eggs, and then fold into the sugar-cornstarch mixture. When milk is almost to a boil, slowly pour in the egg mixture, while constantly whipping. Place this on a low heat until desired thickness is maintained. Stir constantly. Take off heat and cool before adding whiskey. While sauce is cooling, continue to whip to reduce lumping. Add whiskey. If sauce is too thick, it can be thinned with milk.

Serves 8
Based on a recipe I found on the Internet and adapted to my tastes!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Ann's Favorite Fall Chile

olive oil
2 large sweet onions
4 cloves garlic
2 to 2 1/2 lbs ground beef or turkey
2 large green bell peppers
2 large red bell peppers
2 large yellow or orange bell peppers
1 chipotle pepper in adobo, chopped fine
optional - 1 jalapeno, minced
4 T chile powder
1 T garlic powder
2 T dried oregano

1 small can tomato paste
4 28 oz cans diced tomatoes, or whole chopped up - keep the liquid
salt to taste
2 bay leaves

1 14-1/2 oz can of kidney beans
1 28 oz can black beans

Cut onions into bite sized pieces. Mince Garlic. Chop bell peppers into bite sized pieces.

Preheat olive oil in the bottom of a large soup pot over medium high. Use enough olive oil to coat the
bottom with a very thin layer. When oil is hot add onions and garlic. Saute till tender. Add ground beef, chile powder, garlic powder and saute till beef is done. Add peppers, chipotle, and if using it, jalapeno and cook about 5 minutes more.

Dump in tomatoes. Add bay leaf and tomato paste. Stir. Bring to a boil. Turn down and simmer at least 30 minutes. Salt to taste and if you like add more chile powder, garlic salt or oregano to taste. Add all the beans. Eat!!

If you like, this is great topped with shredded cheddar cheese, chopped onions, crumbled corn chips, you name it!

*If you want a vegetarian, add an extra couple cans of beans or corn instead of the beef, and put them in near the end just to heat.a

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Beef, Bean, Garlic, and Basil Stew

I did not make this one up. It was adapted from a recipe I was given years ago. SO flavorful!

4 cans cooked beans (white works well!)
6 T olive oil
2 onions, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
3 lbs boneless chuck roast, cut into 2" cubes
2 T flour
1 28-oz can whole tomatoes, drained, chopped, juices reserved
1 14 1/2 oz can whole tomatoes, drained, chopped, juices reserved
1 c beef stock or canned broth
1 t salt
1/2 t pepper
18 large fresh basil leaves
4 large garlic cloves
1 T mince fresh thyme, or 1 t dried
1 lb young green beans

bread crumbs
8 large fresh basil leaves
2 garlic cloves
1 T unsalted butter cut into pieces

For beef: Heat 2 T oil in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions and chopped garlic and saute until transparent, about 10 minutes. Toss beef in flour. Add to onion mixture and cook until no longer pink about 20 minutes. Add tomatoes and their juices, stock, salt, and pepper. Cover and simmer until beef is tender, stirring occasionally, about 2 1/2 hrs.

Puree 18 basil leavs, 4 garlic cloves and remaining 4 T olive oil in a blender. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Mix beans, basil puree and thyme into beef.

Cook green beans in boiling water till crisp-tender, about 5 minutes.

Preheat oven to 450 deg. Mix 3/4 of the green beans into the beef mixture. Transfer to a large baking dish. Sprinkle with bread crumb topping and dot with butter. Bake until beef is heated through and topping is golden, about 20 minutes. Garnish with remaining green beans and basil sprigs.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Warm Winter Greens and Squash Harvest Salad

I saw a recipe for spinach and squash salad in Yoga magazine, so I decided to make a new version using what I had on hand. It was delicious, healthy, and very autumn-like! This makes 2 servings. If you want more double the greens and nuts, and bake a bigger squash for the same amount of time.

1 big head of red swiss chard or
a large bag of spinach - I used chard

1 small butternut squash or acorn squash
1/4 c pine nuts (you can substitutes sliced almonds or pumpkin seeds or any other nut you like)

1 T lemon juice
1 T balsamic vinegar
1 t garlic salt or garlic powder

olive oil
salt and pepper

Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Cut squash in half and scoop out seeds. Oil or spray a pan with baking spray and put squash cut side down. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hr till tender. Cool, peel, and cut up into bite sized pieces.

Meanwhile heat a pan and toast pine nuts or other nuts till lightly browned. Watch carefully - they go fast. Set aside.

Prepare the chard if you are using it - strip of thick stems, chop leaves into large chunks and rinse, then let sit out on a towel to air dry.

Right before you are ready to serve, heat 3 T olive oil in the bottom of a large pan on medium high. Add greens, garlic powder or garlic salt, and cook till wilted and tender. Splash balsamic vinegar over the top.

Put green on a plate. Top with some baked squash. Sprinkle with toasted pine nuts or other nuts. Splash with lemon juice and drizzle with olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste.

Next time I'm going to sprinkle some crumbled feat cheese on this too. It was REALLY yummy!!! I served mine with white fish cooked simply in olive oil and sprinkled with soy sauce and lemon juice in a pan on the stove top.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Ravioli in Browned Butter with Portobello and Spinach

This recipe is for two people - it can be easily multiplied.

8 large cheese ravioli (I like Costco's 4 cheese, found in the freezer section)
1 large or 2 medium portobello mushrooms, with stems and black stuff removed, and then chopped
4 T butter
1 T lemon juice
1 T balsamic vinegar
1 medium bag of spinach or 4 large handfuls, or 2 bunches washed, drained (basically enough to wilt for 2 people)
salt, pepper, garlic powder

Cook ravioli according to package directions. Remove and drain carefully. Heat 3 T butter in a skillet and when bubbly, put ravioli in there and brown them on each side, about 3-4 minutes till they get just a little crusty. Pour 1 T balsalmic over and let bubble a minute, then remove to plates.

Add remaining 1 T butter to skillet and stir fry portobellos, add a shake of garlic powder, salt, pepper, and the lemon juice when the mushrooms are near tender. Divide mushrooms over ravioli.

In hot skillet add spinach. If necessary add a tiny bit of olive oil or butter but there should be enough left so you don't have to. Toss around till wilted and then put on top of ravioli and mushrooms. Eat immediately. YUM. This is a great vegetarian meal.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

White Bean, Potato, Sage, and Rosemary Soup

2 T fresh rosemary, or 3 t dried
2 T dried sage
1 T dried coriander
1/2 t ground cloves
2 bay leaves

olive oil
salt & pepper
3 carrots, peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
2 large white potatoes, peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
1 large sweet onion, peeled and chopped into bite sized pieces
1 head of garlic with all the cloves peeled

2 14-1/2oz cans any cooked white bean (white navy, butter beans,...)
5 14 1/2 oz cans chicken broth or veggie broth

Toss potatoes, carrots, onion, and garlic cloves in olive oil and liberally salt and pepper. Put on a large baking sheet and roast at 450 degrees for 15 minutes till soft.

Heat 2T olive oil in large soup pot. Add rosemary, sage, coriander, cloves, and bay leaves and make a paste. Heat spices for 1 minute. Add vegetables, beans, and broth. Bring to a boil and then turn down and simmer for 15-20 minutes.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Flavorful Black Beans

1/2 walla walla or sweet onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled & chopped
1 stalk celery chopped
2 T cumin
1 T red wine vinegar
5 T extra virgin olive oil
2 14 1/2 oz cans of black beans, one drained, and save half the bean liquid from the other.

Heat olive oil over medium high and add onions, carrots, and celery. Cook till they are crisp tender. Add beans, bean liquid, cumin, and cook for about 5-10 minutes till beans are heated through. Add the vinegar, heat a bit more.

Serve with rice and a salad for a complete veggie meal.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Southwestern Chicken Soup

4 T butter
2 chicken breasts diced (can be omitted)
1 large sweet vidalia or walla walla onion, diced
1 rib of celery, chopped

1 package of frozen corn or about 1 1/2 cups
1 huge or 2 small potatoes diced or cubed
2 large red, gold, or orange bell peppers, diced
1 t sage
1 t cayenne pepper, ground
1 t coriander

4 T flour
1 cup milk

1 can (14 1/2 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained
4 oz or a half cup of grated cheddar cheese (more is ok too!)
salt, pepper
5 14 1/2 oz cans of broth, or 2 32 oz boxes

Get a big soup pot and heat over medium high. Melt the butter and dump in chicken, onions, and celery. Sprinkle with 1 t salt. Cook till chicken is cooked through, and onions are translucent or at least soft. Dump in corn, peppers, broth, sage, cayenne, coriander and broth. Bring to a boil, then mix the flour and milk and dump that in. Boil again and simmer it for 15 minutes or so to blend flavors. At the very end add the black beans, and stir in the grated cheese. Add salt, pepper, and/or other spices you like to taste. YUM. A great nurturing soup for fall.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Easy Hummus

1 28-oz can chick peas, well drained
2 T tahini (Sesame paste, found in most healthy food stores)
2 T lemon juice
2 big cloves of garlic
1 T salt
1/4 c of olive oil or more to taste

Dump all of it in a good blender or food processor. Add more olive oil till you get the consistency you like. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with paprika to serve. Great with pita chips, carrots, or spooned onto endive leaves. If you want you an add a few roasted red peppers to make roasted red pepper hummus, or you can add some dill for dill hummus - get creative! WAY cheaper than store bought esp, if you get the chick peas at a dollar store!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Another Yummy Asian Style Stir Fry

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, or tofu if you're vegetarian
cut chicken or tofu into bite sized pieces.
1 head of bok-choy, chopped into bite sized bits
3 carrots, peeled and sliced thin on the bias
2 small or 1 large potato, peeled, sliced thin, and halved
2" ginger root, peeled and chopped fine
3-4 cloves of garlic

olive oil
toasted sesame oil
rice wine vinegar
soy sauce
optional - toasted sesame seeds to put on top

Heat olive oil and about 1 T toasted sesame oil over medium high heat and toss in carrots and potatoes. Stir fry till they get a little soft, then toss in garlic and ginger and stir fry till those are soft. Splash about 2 T rice wine vinegar in. Keep going till the carrots and potatoes are crisp tender (ie., not too hard to chew!). Set aside.

Add a little extra olive oil to recoat bottom of pan and 1 T toasted sesame oil. Dump in bok choy and again stir fry till white parts are crisp tender and green parts are wilted. Splash with some rice wine vinegar (just 1-2 T) and dump in with carrots and potatoes.

Add a little extra olive oil to recoat bottom of pan and 1 T toasted sesame oil. Add chicken or tofu. If you use tofu, I hope you are better at frying it than I am!! Fry till done, flipping when needed. Dump in about 3 T soy sauce, and about 3 T honey and stir a bit. Add all the stuff back into the pan and stir around till its all coated.

Serve over rice or interesting noodles.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Moroccan Inspired Sweet and Savory Chicken

Make Couscous according to box directions or for a healthier alternative make quinoa:

1 1/2 cups quinoa
3 c water

Bring water to boil. Add quinoa. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Dump on serving platter.

1 t ground coriander
1 t ground cinnamon
1 t tumeric
1/4 t cayenne pepper
1/4 t ground cumi
14/ t ground cardamom

3 T olive oil
2 large chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces

3/4 c chopped red onion, or sweet vidalia onion
3 cloves garlic minced

1 cup green pitted olives (no pimentoes or other stuffing)
1 preserved lemon chopped fine*
1/2 c raisins
1/2 c apricot preserves
1/2 of a 14-1/2 oz can chicken broth

Measure all spices into a bowl to have them ready. Heat olive oil to coat bottom of a large skillet over medium high. Add onions and garlic and saute 2 minutes. Add chicken pieces, and then dump spices over top evenly.  Let chicken cook about 3-4 minutes on first side, then turn and cook about 2-3 minutes on other side till done. Dump in olives, preserved lemons, broth, preserves, and raisins. Let simmer for about 5-10 more minutes till flavors are mixed. Dump over couscous or quinoa.  Better even the second day after the flavors mesh more.  It is salty, savory, and somewhat sweet.

* You can get preserved lemons at specialty food stores or make your own by scoring a lemon till you see the inside but not cutting all the way t hrough and stuffing it with salt. Do this to several lemons and pack with salt in a mason jar. Squish down real well and add more juice to cover if  needed.  Let sit a month. If you do not have or want to use preserved lemon, substitute one lemon's juice, 1 t salt, and the zest of that lemon in the recipe.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Ann's Pesto Chicken Pizza

¼ c to ½ c fresh pesto sauce
1 baked or grilled chicken breast (see below)
½ c sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil, chopped
1-2 tomatoes, sliced thinly
½ c kalamata olives, sliced thinly
¾ c feta cheese crumbled
1 c (more or less to taste) grated mozzarella cheese
1 Boboli pizza crust
1/3 c extra-virgin olive oil (optional)

Grill chicken breasts coated with olive oil, garlic, & Italian seasoning until just done or bake in a 450 degree oven for 12 minutes. Chop into bite-sized pieces. Or take apart one store bought chicken. Cover and set aside.

Brush Boboli with olive oil. Spread on a coating of pesto. Sprinkle chicken and sun-dried tomatoes evenly over of pesto. Add olives. Cover with feta, and then add sliced tomatoes and mozzarella. Bake according to Boboli at 450 for 10 min or until cheese is bubbly and hinting at turning golden.

Saturday, July 18, 2009


This is just one of many versions of a yummy, healthy mediterranean parsley and wheat salad. Its great mixed with hummus on a pita chip.

1 1/2 cups water
1 c bulgar wheat
1/3 c lemon juice
1/3 c olive oil
1 1/2 T salt

3 bunches parsley, with the leaves chopped fine. Discard stems
1 cucumber, seeded and diced
tomatoe, diced - optional

Boil water and pour 1 1/2 cups over the bulgar wheat in a big bowl. Add lemon juice, olive oil, and salt. Let it sit for 45 minutes to an hour till fluffy. Add in parsley, cucumber, and if desired, tomatoes. If the taste is not strong enough, you can add more lemon juice and olive oil, and season to taste. Great as a side for mediterranean chicken, or served with hummus on pita chips.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Easy Grain Salad

This looks like the fancy tarts sold in bakeries and its SO EASY!!!

1/2 sweet onion (walla wall or vidalia), chopped
2 zucchini squash, chopped
2 red bell pepper, chopped
1 c quinoa

1/3 c lemon juice
1/4 c olive oil
olive oil for sauteeing
salt and pepper to taste

Bring 2 cups of water to boil, reduce to simmer, dump in quinoa, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Dump in a big bowl when done.

While quinoa is cooking, saute peppers, squash, onion in a little olive oil till crisp tender. IF you like garlic then you can mince some and cook along with veggies. Dump in bowl with quinoa. Add lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper to taste. Eat hot or cold.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Lemon Pudding Fruit Pie with Gingersnap Crust

This looks like the fancy tarts sold in bakeries and its SO EASY!!!

1 1/2 cups crumbled gingersnaps - I put a 1/2 a bag or box of
them in the blender and mix on high till they are crumbs

2 T sugar
1/4 c melted butter

box of lemon pudding and whatever eggs
or sugar are required to make it (read the box)

3-4 kiwis
1/2 pint blueberries
1/2 quart of strawberries

Mix gingersnaps, 2 Tsugar, and melted butter, and press into the bottom of a 9" pie dish. Bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.

Make a box of lemon pudding according to the directions and pour in the pie shell.

Refrigerate overnight (covered with saran) or for several hours till the pudding hardens.

Now put some blueberries in the center, and then a ring of sliced kiwis and at the outer edges, pile up sliced strawberries. Ta da! Everyone loves this and its so summery and easy!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Cheesy tortilla soup

I have a gazillion variations of tortilla soup. Here is one I made up last week:

olive oil
2 medium golden yukon potatoes, chopped into bite sized pieces
1 stalk of celery, chopped into bite sized pieces.

2 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 small sweet onion (vidalia, walla walla) chopped

2 t salt
1 t pepper
4 T cumin powder
1 T coriander (optional)

1 large chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, chopped fine
(take it out of a small can and chop it up)
1 bag frozen corn
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
4-6 cans of chicken broth (14- 1/2 oz)

1 14-1/2 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 8oz pack of shredded cheddar cheese

Chips, diced tomatoes, sour cream

Put olive oil on the bottom of a soup pot to cover the bottom and heat to medium high. Add potato and celery and stir fry for about 4 minutes or so. Dump in onion, garlic, chicken, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper. Stir fry, adding more olive oil if necessary till chicken is white all over on the outside and the onion and garlic are tender, about 4- 5 minutes. Add corn and chipotle and stir a biit more. Dump in tomatoes, and broth and bring to a boil. Boil 4-5 minutes or maybe a little longer then reduce to simmer and cover until chicken is cooked and potatoes are done, about 15- 20 minutes. At the last minute dump in the beans, then the cheese and stir the cheese in till melted. If there is not enough flavor for you, dump in more cumin. I like it that way!

It is great with extra fresh diced tomatoes, a dollop of sour cream, and chips crumbled on top.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Swiss Chard Roll Ups

A big thank you to Tricia Royall, my dear hairdresser who gave me this recipe!! You rock Tricia!! (Her phone at her salon is: 480-481-0665)

1 cup of rice
2 large carrot, peeled and chopped fine
1 medium beet, peeled and chopped fine
1/3 c sweet onion, minced
1 big bunch red swiss chard
olive oil
soy sauce or tamari

Cook rice - bring 2 cups of water to boil, turn to simmer, dump rice in and cover. Let simmer 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cut the stems out of the chard to leave only large portions of leaf. Rinse, and pat dry. You need big sections of leaf to roll up with no hard stems in them.

When rice has only 5 minutes left, heat olive oil to coat bottom of pan and saute carrot, beets, and onions with a few splashes of soy sauce or tamari. When rice is done, mix all together with rice. Put a few spoonfuls of the rice veggie mix on each segment of chard leaf and roll up. Eat plain or with extra soy sauce. You may have extra rice which is great on its own.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Tropical Orange Roughy with Pineapple Salsa, Orange flavored greens, & Happy Sesame Pea Pods

Some experiments turn out well! This one is so good its hard to believe its so good for you! It is easy to double if you want a meal for four. Since the fish and greens have practically the same ingredients, its pretty quick cooking too.

For Fish:
2 orange roughy or tilapia filets
2 T olive oil
2 T minced ginger
3 cloves minced garlic
1 orange cut in half
1 T tamari or soy sauce
4 T toasted sesame seeds

For Greens:
1 bunch swiss chard, stems removed
and leaves washed & chopped
2 T minced ginger
3 cloves minced garlic
1 orange cut in half
1 T tamari or soy sauce

For Pea Pods:
About 2 large handfuls chinese or snap pea pods
a little extra olive oil
4 T toasted sesame seeds

For Pineapple/Sweet Onion Salsa:
1 c chopped pineapple (fresh is best, if not used canned)
1/- 1/2 c chopped sweet onion ( I used vidalia onion, and 1/4 onion)

1. Cook up Rice of some other grain to be a side dish. You can do this ahead of time and reheat if you want.

2. Mix onion and pineapple to make pineapple salsa. Let the flavors mesh. Make sure you use sweet onion unless you like a kick.

3. Heat two large non stick pans over medium heat on stove top. Add about 2 T olive oil to each.

4. Chop up all the garlic (6 cloves total) and divide into two piles (one for fish, one for greens). Divide total ginger (4 T total) also into two piles. Put half the ginger and half the garlic in each pan and let saute for about 2 minutes till they start to brown a bit.

5. Add fish to one pan and generously salt and pepper. Add cut up swiss chard to the other and generously salt and pepper.

6. Let fish cook till pretty white on the bottom and about halfway through, then flip. Generously salt and pepper. Squeeze one orange over this and add 1 T of tamari or soy sauce. Let the fish simmer in these juices till done

7. About this time the chard should be getting wilted. Squeeze one orange over this and add 1 T of tamari or soy sauce. When greens are wilted but not mush, remove to serving dish. Reserve a little liquid in the bottom of this pan.

8. To the pan the greens just came out of, add a little olive oil and the pea pods. Stir fry them till just tender to your taste. Remove to serving dish and sprinkle with 4 T toasted sesame seeds

9. When fish is totally cooked, remove and pour liquids over top of it in serving dish. Sprinkle with 4 T toasted sesame seeds.

Serve fish, greens, pea pods, and rice with pineapple salsa.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Healthy Barley, Roast Veggie, and Bean Summer Salad

1 can white beans, any kind, rinsed and drained.

1/2 c barley cooked - Bring 1 1/2 cups water to a boil, reduce to simmer, add barley, and simmer covered for 40 minutes. Drain and cool.

4 cloves garlic
1 head of broccoli divided into florets
1 sweet vidalia onion cut into 1" pieces
3-4 ripe tomatoes quarted and sqeezed (just to get some of the water out)
olive oil, salt, pepper

1 1/2 t Dijon or spicy mustard
1 T red wine vinegar
1 t lemon juice
2 T olive oil

While barley is cooking, toss veggies with olive oil, a little salt, and pepper and put in a pan or roasting dish in a 425 degree oven for about 20-25 minutes just till broccoli starts to brown.

Mix roast veggies, barley, and beans together.

To make dressing, mix mustard, vinegar, and lemon juice. Then whisk in olive oil. Make sure you like the taste and dump over the salad. If you want it simpler, you can use balsamic vinegar and olive oil instead. Very healthy and a good vegetarian meal too.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Pumperknickel Garlic Bread and Tomato Topping

This is for garlic lovers - if you are not a garlic lover... best to try something else :)

1 loaf of thinly sliced pumpernickel bread (you can substitute anything)
1 cup of butter softened
8 cloves of garlic minced really fine, pressed, or grated with a microplane

4 large or 8 plum tomatoes - make sure they are very ripe!
6 more cloves of garlic minced
enough olive oil to coat chopped tomatoes
1 t salt

For the tomatoe topping, mince tomatoes fine and mix with minced garlic, olive oil, and salt. Let sit at room temperature this way at least a half hour. You can refrigerate after that.

For garlic bread, combine softened butter and minced garlic and spread on as many slices of bread as you want to make. Put bread, buttery side up on cookie sheets and bake at 250 for at least 13-15 minutes till toast gets crispy and you smell the bread. Take it out. Cool. Store at room temp in a bread box, or covered bowl.

Pile the garlic-y tomatoes on the garlic bread and enjoy a crunchy and savory summer snack.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Sweet Spinach Salad with Apricot Dressing

1/3 c olive oil
2 T balsamic vinegar
2 T Apriot jam
2 T salt
2 cloves garlic minced, or 1 1/2 T garlic powder

Whisk all but oil together then drizzle in oil while whisking. Pour what you want over salad before serving. Clumps when refrigerated, so if you chill it, bring to room temp and shake well before serving.

1 big bowl of spinach that has been rough chopped into bite sized pieces (I use 18-24 oz)
1 red bell pepper cut into bite sized pieces
2 14 1/2 oz cans mandarin oranges (drain well, you don't want them soggy)
1/2 c sliced almonds

Toss it all together. I imagine it would be yummy to add chopped water chestnuts or jimica too.

Toss with dressing right before serving.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Vegetarian "Spaghetti" with sauce

2 T oregano
2 T basil
2 28oz can diced or whole tomatoes
1/4 - 1/3 large sweet onion - about a half cup, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T olive oil

In a medium pot heat olive oil over medium. Saute garlic and onion a few minutes till tender. Add in oregano and basil and stir around a few seconds till heated. Add tomatoes, and heat over high for awhile till tomatoes start to break down. Mash them around to help the process. Then turn the sauce to low and let simmer till you're ready to eat. The longer the better, but you can use it in about 15 minutes.

Veggie "Spaghetti"
2 T olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1/4 c pine nuts
1 to 1 1/2 c mushrooms, crimini or button, sliced
2 large or 3 small yellow squash grated into matchstick pieces
(use a food processor or mandolin)
2 cups loose fresh spinach, chopped
1/4 c parmesan cheese

Heat olive oil over medium in a good sized pan. Toast pine nuts in it, stirring till
brown, remove to a bowl. Add a little more olive oil and mushrooms. Stir around
a minute or two till tender but not soggy. Add to pine nuts. If necessary coat
pan again with a little olive oil. Add squash, spinach, italian seasoning, and salt
and stir around till just barely tender but not mushy. Add to mushrooms and pinenuts.
Stir in parmesan. Serve hot with sauce over top. Sop up extra sauce with bread or rolls.

Serves four.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Indian Style Roasted Cauliflower

1 head cauliflower, cut into bite sized florets
4 T olive oil
2 t salt
2 T curry powder
1 t ground coriander
2 t ground cumin

Toss cauliflower forets with about 4 T olive oil, or enough to coat thoroughly
Add salt, curry powder, coriander, and cumin mixture.

Put on a cookie tray with non stick spray or coating and
roast for about 18 minutes.

Great as a side dish or in wraps with other sauteed or roasted veggies.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Grilled Salmon with Dijon Sauce

For a quick easy salmon marinade:

Mix 2 parts plain yogurt with 1 part dijon mustard.
Add a few pinches of dill.

Turn barbecue onto lowest setting, or heat a grill pan over medium low.
Spread the mixture on the salmon right before grilling.
Grill salmon on one side till edges turn opaque. Flip and finish off a few miutes.

Save some extra sauce for passing.

Serve with steamed baby carrots with melted butter and dill, and a nice salad.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Healthy Garlic Chicken Pasta

1 box whole wheat or regular spaghetti - 24 oz or less depending on whether you like a lot or a little
2 large or 3 small chicken breasts - about 1 1/2 lbs, cut into bite sized pieces.
1 box frozen spinach, thawed and drained
1 pint grape tomatoes, or if you can't find those, use plum or cherry tomatoes
2 whole heads (not cloves, whole heads) of garlic, with all the cloves peeled and rough chopped
olive oil
2-4 oz feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 c red wine, any kind, optional.

Make sure you've thawed and drained the spinach before you get going

Get the pasta in the boiling water to cook. If you don't like doing two things at once, do this first. Cook according to package directions, strain and set aside.

Heat about 3 T olive oil in a large pan over medium high. Saute garlic till browned a bit and smelling good. This goes fast. Remove garlic from skillet and set aside. Add a little more olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan, and then saute chicken till browned. Remove and set aside with garlic. Add tomatoes to the pan and cook in the oil till they just pop. Add back the garlic, chicken, the thawed drained spinach, and if you like 1/4 c red wine. Simmer a bit. Dump in the cooked spaghetti, and stir around. I like to add about 3-4 more tablespoons of olive oil to coat it all. Put on plates and sprinkle with crumbled feta cheese. YUM. This easily feeds a familiy of four, with some leftovers.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Lemon Curd

This isn't mine but it is delicious! This is the lemon stuff that you see in fancy fruit tarts. If you like, make a batch, pour in a graham cracker crust (available in the baking section of the store), and top with sliced kiwis, strawberries, and blueberries - so fancy and reasonably healthy too!

Click here for video of recipe

Recipe from: Chef John Mitzewich

6 egg yolks
1 c sugar
2 T lemon zest
1/3 c fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/2 c butter, cut up into little pieces

Stir yolks and sugar for two to three minutes till it turns creamy white and pale yellow
Add 2 T lemon zest, and 1/3 c fresh squeezed lemon juice.
Put on double boiler and stir for about 7-10 minutes till it coats the back of the spoon (see video for exact consistency). Add sliced up butter a piece at a time and let each one melt before stirring in the next. Time to pour into a pie crust and chilll before adding fruit, or just chill it and eat later with fruit in a parfait dish.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Sweet Sausage and Veggie Penne Pasta

2 T Olive oil
1 lb sweet italian sausage (removed from casing if it comes in one)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 large sweet onion, chopped
1 c chopped carrots (About 2-3 big ones)
8 oz roasted red bell peppers, cut into bite sized pieces
2 T italian seasoning
1 T chopped rosemary
1 T salt
pepper to taste
2 28-oz cans tomatoes - any kind
1/2 c parmesan cheese, grated
1 lb penne pasta cooked

Prepare canned tomatoes by givine a quick whir in the blender - don't liquify, just chop up a bit to a thick sauce. Heat olive oil over medium high heat in a big pan. Add onions, garlic, carrots, and sausage and saute till sausage is done and onions are translucent. Add italian seasoning, red peppers, rosemary, salt, pepper, and tomatoes. Simmer 20 minutes for flavors to mix. Stir in cheese. Serve over cooked penne pasta. Sweet meat, sweet veggies, sweet dish!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Easy Penne Chicken Pasta

1/2 lb penne
mozarella, shredded for top

2 chicken breasts or some chicken tenders
(both work, tenders go faster)
rosemary - a few sprigs - 3-4 T chopped
olive oil

oregano - 2 T
1 28oz can tomatoes (plum whole)
1/4 - 1/3 large sweet onion - about a half cup
2 cloves garlic

1. Cook penne according to directions in one pot
2. In another pot, chop onion & garlic. Saute till soft in olive oil and dump in tomatoes and oregano. Break up tomatoes and cook for about 15 minutes till soft and sauce like.

3. In a third pan, heat olive oil and add chicken and rosemary - cook it as you normally do in a pan till done, flipping once or twice till roasty and done, then cut up into bite sized chunks.

Mix chicken, sauce, some chopped fresh tomatoes, and dump in a dish (I used an 8x8). Top with mozarella cheese and bake at 350 till cheese is bubbly and done.

For a 9x13" dish, double it all.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Easy Chicken Picatta

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 T butter
juice from 1/2 lemon
2 t garlic powder or garlic salt
salt and pepper to taste
/4 c flour
2 T capers, optional

sliced mushrooms, cooked in butter, optional
steamed broccoli for side dish
cooked wild rice for side dish

Cover chicken breasts with saran on a sturdy surface and pound till flattened and even. Dredge in flour and season with salt and pepper.

Heat 2 T butter in skillet big enough for chicken over medium high heat. Add chicken. Cook till the white starts creeping up around the edges and the first side is browned. Flip and cook 3-5 minutes more till second side is browned. While second side cooks, add lemon juice, capers, and if desires, cooked sliced mushrooms.

Great served with broccoli and rice. You can squeeze the other half of the lemon over the broccoli for added flavor. left off at second page top

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Ann's Game Day Chile

Made in Honor of the Cardinals being the in the Superbowl in 2009!

Olive oil
2 large sweet onions
4 cloves garlic
2 to 2 1/2 lbs ground beef or turkey*

2 large green bell peppers
2 large red bell peppers
2 large yellow or orange bell peppers

1 chipotle pepper in adobo, chopped fine
optional - 1 jalapeno, minced

4 T chile powder
1 T garlic powder
2 T dried oregano
1 small can tomato paste
4 28 oz cans diced tomatoes

salt to taste
2 bay leaves

1 14-1/2 oz can of kidney beans
1 28 oz can black beans

Cut onions into bite sized pieces. Mince Garlic. Chop bell peppers into bite sized pieces.

Preheat olive oil in the bottom of a large soup pot over medium high. Use enough olive oil to coat the bottom with a very thin layer. When oil is hot add onions and garlic. Saute till tender. Add ground beef, chile powder, garlic powder and saute till beef is done. Add peppers, chipotle, and if using it, jalapeno and cook about 5 minutes more.

Dump in tomatoes. Add bay leaf and tomato paste. Stir. Bring to a boil. Turn down and simmer at least 30 minutes. Salt to taste and if you like add more chile powder, garlic salt or oregano to taste. Add all the beans. Eat!!

If you like, this is great topped with shredded cheddar cheese, chopped onions, crumbled corn chips, you name it!

*If you want a vegetarian, add an extra couple cans of beans or corn instead of the beef, and put them in near the end just to heat.

Orange Vegetable & Chicken Stir Fry

2 to 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, or you can omit for vegetarian version
3/4 - 1 lb green beans, ends cut off and cut into bite sized bits
1 small head of broccoli, with florets cut into bite sized pieces
1 orange, with peel removed (use potato peeler, orange part only) and save the juice
1/2 c cashews
2 yellow or red bell peppers cut into bite sized bits
1/2 c orange marmalade
1/3 c soy sauce or tamari
sesame seeds for garnish
peanut oil or vegetable oil for stir frying
salt, pepper, and garlic powder for taste

Use a wok or big skilled. Heat oil to coat bottom of pan over medium high. Stir fry chicken till done, and dump in separate bowl. Do the same for each of the veggies. When all are done, turn the heat down to medium low, put everything back in the skillet, add orange peel, and coat with orange marmalade and soy sauce, tossing to coat thoroughly. Add salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste. Start with a little at a time until you like it.

Sprinkle sesame seeds on top - as much as you like and serve over rice. Healthy and yummy! If you want a different flavor use hoison or apricot preserves instead of the orange marmalade.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

So Soothing Lemon Ginger Honey Tea

I LOVE This stuff - easy to make, and if you buy ginger at the 99cent only superstore, its cheap. Ginger warms you, improves digestion, and circulation. Honey is a natural anti-bacterial, and lemon balances the ph. Great comforting tea for winter. It IS quite strong, but yummy! I like it hot but you could just as easily drink it cool.

I didn't make this one up - click here for the recipe!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Denise's Easy Bread

My friend Denise gave me this super easy recipe years ago. I didn't make this one up. It makes one rustic loaf for you and one to share with a friend. Even if you can’t bake bread, you can make this.  One recipe goes a long way and there are endless variations.  Use your imagination and see what you come up with

1 pkg yeast
2 c warm water
1 ¼ t salt
1 T sugar
6-7 c flour
desired filler

Filler Ideas:
•  Sliced kalamata olives, minced garlic, and rosemary
•  Parmesan cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, & herbs
•  Cinnamon, sugar, and raisins

I have never measured these! I eyeball it and try to put enough in to evenly distribute throughout bread.

Dissolve yeast in water; add salt & sugar.  Add flour 1 cup at a time.  When dough is mixed, shape into a ball.  Grease top.  Cover & let stand until double in a warm place.  Knead in filler (olives, garlic, parmesan, cheddar, herbs, sun dried tomatoes, cinnamon/raisin filling.... whatever!)  Turn onto a lightly floured surface and shape into two logs (or rounds, if you’re making round bread).  Put on a sheet sprinkled with cornmeal.  Brush water on top & let stand at least 5 minutes.  Put a pan of water on the lower shelf in the oven.

Put bread on the upper shelf.  Turn oven on to 400 degrees and bake for 45 minutes.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Super Protein New Year's Salad

I know we all want to eat better in the new year but my body insisted on it! This is healthy and good. If you are a vegetarian substitute raw chick peas for the cooked chicken. Recipe is for two but you can double it. If you haven't tried quinoa it is SO healthy and its yummy.

1/2 c quinoa grain, cooked (see below)

2 handfuls of any salad green -
I used romaine, but mixed, spinach, etc. would work

2 chicken breasts or a can of chick peas
2 vine ripe tomatoes, cut in eighths
salt and pepper
Balsamic vinegar
Good olive oil

Cook the quinoa - bring one cup of water to boiling and when just boiling, add quinoa, turn heat to lowest setting and simmer 15 minutes with a lid on the pot. Don't peak - it has to steam. Cool.

Heat olive oil (enough to coat a pan) over medium high. Add chicken breasts that have been well salted and peppered. About 3 minutes into cooking, splash some balsamic on top - just enough to lightly coat bottom of pan. Cook 2 minute more then flip chicken. If necessary add enough more balsamic to coat the pan, and a little more olive oil if that has dried out. Let cook till done t hrough, about 5 minutes more. Take off heat and cut into bite sized strips or pieces.

For each salad, assemble half the greens on a plate, half the quinoa, and pile chicken on top of each. Arrange tomatoes nicely around the edges. Salt and pepper if you like. Drizzle liberally with olive oil and splash with a bit more balsamic vinegar. Healthy, protein packed and good.