Thursday, September 27, 2007

Taco Bake

1 lb. of ground beef or turkey
1 can of Condensed tomato soup OR 1 can of red enchilada sauce*
1 C of salsa
1/2 C of milk
6 flour tortillas or 8 corn-tortillas** cut into 1 inch pieces
2 C of shredded cheddar or Mexican blend cheese (reserve about 1/2 C for sprinkling on top of casserole)
chopped onion to taste
Optional add ins: chopped black olives, chopped green chilies, drained black beans, chopped jalapenos.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cook meat and onions together in a skillet. Add remaining ingredients, then spoon into a 2 pt. shallow baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes. Add reserved cheese, bake another 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Serve with sour cream.

*I prefer this recipe with enchilada sauce.
**I think the corn tortillas are better in this recipe.

Technorati tags: Easy Recipe, Main Dish, Mexican, recipe

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Impostor Mom's Mama's Roast Beef

Impostor Mom submitted this spectacular recipe. It's especially wonderful since it requires the crock pot and cooking with my crock pot makes me happier than you can imagine. The remaining half of the bottle of red wine also made me happier than you can imagine.

1 Beef Roast (Any cut, as big as you need for your family)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 pack onion soup mix
1/2 bottle of red wine

Place Roast in a crock pot. Mix onion soup mix and cream of mushroom soup. Spread on top of Roast. Pour wine in crock pot until it is just about at the top of the roast. Cook for 8-10 hours.

Note from Impostor Mom: I use the leftover roast beef for hash. That's roast beef, potatoes and onions cooked on the stove in oil. I use whatever onions and potatoes I have on hand and sometimes I throw in some mushrooms. You have to lay out the mixture on paper towels when its done cooking to let the grease drain off or it's really greasy. We eat it with ketchup on it. The other meal is using the gravy. I put the gravy, another can of cream of mushroom soup, mushrooms, and some more red wine in the crock pot with beef stew meat. I let that cook all day and when I get home I make egg noodles. About 1/2 an hour before dinner I stir an entire container of sour cream into the meat mixture then stir the egg noodles in with the beef in the crock pot. That's my beef stroganoff.

Technorati Tags: Roast, Crock Pot, Easy Recipe, Slow Cooker

Monday, September 17, 2007

Hank & Willie's Triple Chocolate Brownies

This recipe was submitted by Anna from Hank & Willie. I made it twice this weekend just to be sure that it was as delicious as I thought. Both times confirmed Anna's description as being the best brownies EVAH!

I've included all of Anna's parenthetical asides...

1 stick butter, unsalted
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate (I like Ghiradelli or Valhrona best, but Baker's works too)
1 cup dark brown sugar, loosely packed
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large eggs, well beaten
1 tiny dash cinnamon, preferably Penzy's Chinese cassia* (not too much!)
1 dash salt (not too much!)
1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup (scant)** unbleached white flour
1 cup Ghiradelli semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat over to 350 and butter a glass 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 pan before you start.

Melt chocolate and butter together over a low heat, remove from heat, let cool for 3-5 minutes. Add vanilla and sugar, mix well. Add beaten eggs, mix well. Add cinnamon, salt, cocoa powder and flour, mix well, then mix in chocolate chips and pour into prepared pan.

This next part is VERY important. If you like them the way I do, almost like a flourless chocolate cake, set your timer for 18 minutes. And remember, use a glass pan. The difference between 18 and 20 minutes is huge to these delicate chocolate darlings, and I find this recipe to be at its best at 18 minutes, EVEN if your knife check reveals a little gooeyness in the center (It will continue to cook when you take it out, and it won't be gooey when it cools.) You'll get to know how your oven responds to this recipe, but I would be surprised if you would want them to bake more than 19 minutes, and maybe even as little as 17 minutes. When they bake too long, they get a bit dry, since it is such a dense recipe. Oh, and it doubles quite well, I can report.

*I didn't have any fancy cinnamon. My brownies still turned out fantastic.
**Scant means "not quite." I didn't know this and had to look it up.

Technorati Tags: brownies, chocolate, dessert, baking, recipe

Friday, September 14, 2007

Baked Chicken That Will Knock Your Socks Off

Whole Chicken, trimmed of fat, rinsed, and patted dry
1/4 C of Olive Oil OR 1/2 stick of butter, melted*
1/3 C Lemon Juice (I use the stuff out of the bottle, don't judge me.)
2 tsp Dried Thyme
1 tsp Dried Oregano
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray. Put chicken in dish, breast side up, tuck the wings under the body. Combine all the ingredients and pour evenly over the chicken. Bake for an hour and fifteen minutes to an hour and a half, or until thigh meat registers 170 degrees.

Serves 2 starving adults

*Butter makes it taste better, but you can feel your arteries clogging when you're eating butter laden chicken.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Chicken Fajita Breakfast Casserole

This Recipe is spectacular if you have leftover chicken fajitas...

1/4 Cup leftover chicken, shredded or cubed
A Few Strips of leftover green pepper strips, cut into small pieces
A Few Strips of leftover onion slices, cut into small pieces
4 Slices of whole wheat bread, crusts removed and broken into pieces
6 eggs
2 Cups milk, cream, or half-n-half
1/2 Cup of Shredded Cheddar Cheese
3-4 TB of Sour Cream (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Spray a 8 X 8 Casserole dish with no-stick spray and line it with the broken up bread slices. Cover with chicken, green peppers, onions, cheese. Mix eggs, milk, salt and pepper until well blended. Pour egg mixture over bread. Refrigerate overnight.*

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set casserole dish on stove top for about 20 minutes before baking. Put a few dollups of sour cream over the egg mixture. Bake 40-45 minutes or until knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Serve with salsa.

Serves 4-6.

*You don't have to refrigerate overnight, I've even cooked it without letting it sit. It's not as good, but if you don't have time for the refrigeration nonsense, it tastes just fine!

Related Recipes
Chicken Fajitas

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Black Beans and Green Chiles

1 Can of Black beans
1 Can of chopped green chiles
1/2 tsp of cumin
Dash of Red Pepper (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix, heat, and serve. Voila.

Related Recipes
Chicken Fajitas

Technorati Tags: Mexican, Low Carb, Vegetarian, Side Dish, Recipe

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Chicken Fajitas

4 Chicken Breasts, trimmed of fat, rinsed, and patted dry
1/2 white or yellow onion, cut into large chunks that can be cooked on an outdoor grill
1 green pepper, cut in half with seeds and stem removed

Marinate the above ingredients for 4-24 hours in the following:

1/2 C Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/4 C White Vinegar
Juice of 1 lime
1 clove of garlic, smashed
1/2 tsp cumin
Dash of red pepper (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

Cook chicken, onion, and green pepper on the grill for approximately 20 minutes*, or until chicken has reached 180 degrees. Watch for flare-ups, the olive oil likes to try and catch fire. Slice the chicken, onion, and pepper into strips. Serve on warm tortillas, or over a bed of lettuce with sour cream, salsa, and shredded cheese.**

Serves 3-4 adults

*If it's raining and I can't use the grill, I have cooked the ingredients in the marinade in a large skillet on the stove. It's not as good as being cooked on the grill, but it works in a pinch.

**I usually serve this meal with Black Beans and Green Chiles.

Related Recipes
Chicken Fajita Breakfast Casserole
Black Beans and Green Chiles

Technorati Tags: Low Carb, Mexican, Salad, Recipes

Kitchens are No Place For Playgroupies

I've made a joke or two on my personal blog, Playgroups are No Place for Children, that if food can't be microwaved or doesn't come out of a can, I won't cook it. Now that I've kinda gotten the hang of taking care of my two kids AND preparing meals, that past statement is no longer entirely true.

Actually, I really like to cook. I especially like coming up with recipes. This blog is going to a collection of my recipes, your recipes, and anything else I feel like posting.

Have a favorite recipe you'd like me to try? Email it to me at playgroupie at gmail dot com. If it's a hit in my house (that means that Carson didn't immediately throw it on the floor) then I'll post it and give you credit and a link to your blog if you have one. I know! My graciousness even surprises me.

Feel free to give me feedback on the recipes you try. Especially if you actually like it, but even if you don't like it.