Sunday, December 20, 2015

Recipe #324: Crock Pot Kielbasa and Kraut

I made a double batch of this for a holiday party, and it was DELICIOUS!  Definitely keeping this recipe on hand for easy party contributions!


  • 1medium onion
  • 2lbs kielbasa (2 kielbasa)
  • 2(32 ounce) packages sauerkraut
  • 13cup brown sugar
  • 1cup water
  • 1cup apple cider


  1. Slice 1 onion into thin strips and caramelize.
  2. Drain and rinse sauerkraut.
  3. Slice kielbasa into 1-inch lengths.
  4. Combine water, cider and brown sugar.
  5. Combine all ingredients well in crock pot.
  6. Cook on high 6 hours.

Recipe #323: Reuben Crescent Bake

Another way to make one of my favorite things!  I've already posted a reuben pizza recipe- here's one to bake in the oven!  Found on I added the seeds to the top, but it's not necessary.


  • 3/4 cup sauerkraut, drained,squeezed dry
  • 1/3 cup thousand island salad dressing
  • 1 (8 ounce) tube refrigerated crescent rolls 
3/4 pound thin-sliced cooked corned beef
  • 8 slices Swiss cheese
  • 1 beaten egg white


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease an 8x8-inch baking dish.
  2. Mix together the sauerkraut and thousand island salad dressing in a bowl until well combined. Unroll the crescent roll dough, and cut dough in half; place one half of the dough onto a floured work surface, and pinch the perforations of the dough closed to make 1 sheet. Roll the dough sheet out to about 12 inches square, and fit the dough into the prepared baking sheet. Pinch perforations closed on 2nd half of dough; roll out to about 9 inches square, and set aside.

  3. Prebake the dough crust in the baking dish in the preheated oven until lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from oven, and place 4 slices of cheese into the bottom of the crust; top cheese slices with the corned beef, and spread with the sauerkraut mixture. Lay 4 remaining slices of Swiss cheese on top of the sauerkraut mixture. Lay the 2nd sheet of crescent roll dough onto the filled baking sheet, and press the top crust down onto the edges of the dish to seal. Brush with beaten egg white.

  4. Bake in the oven until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes; let stand about 5 minutes before slicing.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Recipe #322: Philly Cheesesteak Sloppy Joes

I can't rave enough about this one.  I stumbled across this recipe and knew I had to try it.  Once it was done cooking, although it smelled good, I was worried it might be bland.  I was dead wrong; it was very much the opposite!  It's messy like a sloppy joe, but tastes just like a philly cheesesteak.  I love the cheese sauce.  Maybe next time, I'll add mushrooms.

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 softball-sized onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons steak sauce
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 4 dinner rolls
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup provolone, shredded
  1. In large skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil and then brown the ground beef until completely cooked through and juices run clear.
  2. Add the onion and green pepper to the beef and cook another 3-4 minutes, until the vegetables start to become tender.
  3. Stir in the steak sauce and beef stock. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook about 2 minutes.
  4. Split open rolls and remove some of the soft insides, leaving a bed to hold the meat mixture. Toast the rolls and set aside.
  5. While the meat is cooking, melt the butter in a medium sauce pan. When butter is melted, stir in the flour and cook about 1 minute until a roux is formed. Whisk in milk and let sauce thicken to desired consistency, stirring constantly. Turn off heat and stir the cheese.
  6. To serve, place a scoopful of the meat mixture onto the bottom of the rolls, then top with the cheese sauce and replace the top of the roll.

Recipe #321: Southwest Chicken Taquitos

After a summer of just wanting to eat burgers and steak off my grill, I'm finally back into cooking mode in my kitchen as the weather cools off.  This recipe is SO delicious and very easy to assemble.  I found this on and the only changes I made was to the dipping sauce.  I doubled it and added sour cream when it was too spicy for our tastes.

  • 1 rotisserie chicken breast, shredded
  • 1 cup chopped onion (1/2 large onion)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn
  • 1 14 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese
  • Fajita size tortillas
  • ¼ c ranch
  • ½ avocado
  • 1 T chipotle adobo

  1. Preheat oven to 400F.
  2. In a skillet over medium heat, saute the chopped onion in 1 T olive oil until softened. Add the garlic and cook another 2-3 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly
  3. In a separate bowl, add the sauteed onions and garlic, shredded chicken, corn, beans, green onion, cumin and cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Spoon approximately ¼ cup filling onto a tortilla and roll up. Place seam side down in a baking dish or rimmed cookie sheet. Repeat, arranging the assembled taquitos in a single layer. Spray the tops with nonstick spray.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the tops are crispy and browning.
  6. In a small bowl, mash the avocado until smooth. Whisk in the ranch and adobo sauce and serve alongside for dipping.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Recipe #320: Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

This recipe is perfect.  That's really all I have to say about it, because, I mean, look at that picture!  I served it over jasmine rice.  I found this recipe on

1 pound flank steak or sirloin, sliced thinly across the grain (I used sirloin)
1 pound broccoli florets
2 tablespoons grape seed oil
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded, cut in slices (I also added snow peas)
1 clove garlic, very finely minced
1 teaspoon cornstarch, dissolved in 1 tablespoon water
For the beef marinade1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
freshly ground black pepper
for the sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 teaspoon Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/4 cup chicken broth (or water)
Start by marinating the beef: mix all ingredients in a bowl, add the pieces of beef and stir to coat the slices. Let it stand for 10 minutes, while you prepare the sauce and blanch the broccoli.
Make the sauce by mixing the oyster sauce, rice wine (or sherry), soy sauce, and chicken stock (or water) in a small bowl. Reserve.  Place the broccoli in boiling salted water for 2 minutes. Drain very well and reserve.
Now, the fun begins:  heat a large frying pan or wok over high heat until a bead of water sizzles and instantly evaporates upon contact. Add the cooking oil and swirl to coat. Add the yellow bell pepper and cook it for a couple of minutes until it begins to soften. Remove  and reserve.  Make sure the pan is again very hot, and add the slices of beef, spreading them out all over the surface of the wok or pan in a single layer (preferably not touching). Let the beef fry undisturbed for 1 minute. Flip the beef slices over, add the garlic and reserved bell pepper to the pan and fry for an additional 30 seconds to 1 minute until the beef is cooked through.
Pour in the sauce, add the blanched broccoli and bring to a boil. Pour in the dissolved cornstarch and cook, stirring, until the sauce boils and thickens, 30 seconds.

Recipe #319: Baked Paprika Chicken Thighs, Brussels Sprouts, and Potatoes

Yes, yes, I know.  I haven't posted since May.  That's a good sign though- I've been crazy busy this summer!  Yes, I have made a few new recipes, and it's time to go back through my Facebook pictures to see some of the shots I took of them so I can blog them properly.  Tonight I found a recipe on Eating Well that I adapted for what I had in the kitchen, and it's AMAZING, so I am kicking my blog back into gear with that one!


  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved (or quartered if large)
  • 1 pound redskin potatoes, quartered (or sixthed if large- is sixthed a word!?)
  • 1/2 white onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 lemon, sliced, or lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper, divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika, sweet or hot
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 4 large or 8 small bone-in chicken thighs (about 2 1/2 pounds), skin removed


  1. Position rack in lower third of oven; preheat to 450°F.
  2. Combine Brussels sprouts, onion, potatoes and lemon with 2 tablespoons oil and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper on a large rimmed baking sheet.
  3. Mash garlic and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt with the side of a chef’s knife to form a paste. Combine the garlic paste with paprika, thyme and the remaining 1 tablespoon oil and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl. Rub the paste all over chicken. Nestle the chicken into the vegetables.
  4. Roast on the lower rack until the vegetables are tender and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken without touching bone registers 165°F, 25-30 minutes.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Recipe #318: Tuscan Steak Salad with Broiled Parmesan Tomatoes

I haven't forgotten about my blog!  The fact that I haven't posted in two months tells you how crazy life has been.  But I'm back!  Here's a great one from Cooking Light magazine, June issue.  I doubled it for three of us.


large garlic clove
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided 
1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
(8-ounce) boneless strip steak
Cooking spray 
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 cups Italian-blend salad greens 
2 tablespoons shaved Parmesan cheese 
1. Mince garlic on a cutting board. Sprinkle garlic with salt; mash with the side of a knife to form a paste. Combine garlic paste, 1 tablespoon oil, rosemary, rind, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a bowl. Rub garlic mixture evenly over steak. Let stand 15 minutes.
2. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add steak to pan; grill 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Place steak on a cutting board; let stand 5 minutes. Cut across the grain into thin slices.
3. Combine remaining 1 tablespoon oil, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, vinegar, and Dijon mustard in a bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add greens; toss to coat. Place 1 1/2 cups salad on each of 2 plates; top each serving with 3 1/2 ounces steak and 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese.


vine-ripened tomatoes, halved horizontally (I used hunks of a tomato I already had)
Cooking spray 
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese 
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced fresh oregano

1. Preheat broiler to high.

2. Place oven rack in middle of oven. Arrange tomato halves, cut sides up, on a foil-lined jelly-roll pan (I put them on a rack above a cookie sheet). Coat cut sides of tomatoes with cooking spray; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Broil 8 minutes. Combine cheese, garlic, and oregano in a bowl; sprinkle over tomatoes. Broil 3 minutes or until cheese melts and is golden.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Recipe #317: Broiled Salmon with Bleu Cheese, Lemon, & Dill

I don't remember where I linked to this recipe from, but I knew I had to make it the second I saw it.  It was awhile before I finally planned it out, for whatever reason- I regret waiting so long.  FANTASTIC!!  So much flavor!!  I adjusted the amounts for 2 fillets that were about a half pound each, but I'm leaving measurements here how the recipe originally had them.  Adjust according to your needs.


One 4 1/2-pound wild salmon fillet with skin
Kosher salt
Freshly ground white pepper (I only had black)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced
4 ounces blue cheese, crumbled (1 cup)
1/2 cup chopped dill
1/4 cup minced shallot
2 tablespoons dry white wine
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


Preheat the oven to 450°. Lay the salmon skin side down on a large rimmed baking sheet. Season the salmon with salt and white pepper and dot with the butter. Roast the salmon in the upper third of the oven for 8 minutes, until just starting to brown on top.

Remove the salmon from the oven and preheat the broiler. Set the rack 6 inches from the heat. In a medium bowl, using a fork, blend the cheese with the dill, shallot, wine and lemon juice. Dot the mixture evenly over the salmon fillet and broil for 10 to 12 minutes, until the salmon is golden brown on top and just cooked through.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Recipe #216: Carne Asada Tacos

I don't know what took me so long to find a recipe for carne asada.  I've had some great versions of it at different restaurants and looked forward to making this fresh dish myself.  I made a couple changes (in red) to the recipe I found on  This is definitely worth putting in the permanent rotation of regular favorites!


1 1/2 pounds boneless beef top sirloin,
cut into thin bite-size slices
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
crushed red pepper to taste
1 lime
1 (28 ounce) can tomatillos
2 fresh jalapeno peppers, seeded  (I just used one)
4 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 (10.5 ounce) can beef broth
 12 (6 inch) corn tortillas  (I used flour)
1/2 large onion, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 avocado - peeled, pitted and sliced
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped (Omitted)
1 lemon


1.Place sliced meat into a shallow bowl, and season with salt, black pepper, and crushed red pepper. Squeeze the lime juice over the meat, and turn until evenly coated. Cover, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2.In a blender or food processor, combine tomatillo and jalapeno. Puree for 15 to 20 seconds, or until thick. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Carefully pour in tomatillo mixture. Cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Stir in beef broth. Reduce heat, and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, or until mixture coats a spoon. Transfer mixture to a serving dish.
3.Heat tablespoon oil in a large skillet over high heat. Stir in 1/3 of the beef, and saute for 1 minute. Transfer to serving dish. Repeat with remaining beef. Meanwhile, heat tortillas in the oven or microwave, according to package instructions.
4.To serve, place two tortillas on top of each other. Add desired amount of meat, spoon over some tomatillo mixture. Top with onions, tomatoes, avocado and cilantro. Garnish with a wedge of lemon, to be squeezed over taco before eating.  (I cooked the onions before I added the meat because I prefer cooked over fresh.)

Friday, March 6, 2015

Recipe #315: Chicken Mole

Chocolate? Cinnamon?  Cloves?  Raisins?  With chicken and tomatoes and onions?  YES.  Trust me.  It's WONDERFUL! again for this winner.  I didn't have sesame seeds, unfortunately.

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 (3 pound) chicken, cut into pieces
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup raisins
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1.Heat the vegetable oil in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat. Cook the chicken pieces in the hot oil until golden brown on all sides, about 10 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside. Reduce heat to medium, and stir in the bay leaf, black pepper, cayenne pepper, paprika, cloves, and cinnamon until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the onion and garlic; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes.
2.Stir in the tomatoes, brown sugar, and chicken broth, and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Once simmering, stir in the chocolate chips until melted, then return the chicken pieces to the pot. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the chicken is tender and no longer pink at the bone, 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in the raisins, and cook 3 minutes longer. Sprinkle with sesame seeds to serve.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Recipe #314: Braised Chicken and Brussels Sprouts

This is definitely going into my regular rotation.  It's is a Martha Stewart recipe that I modified based on what I already had in the kitchen, and I love how it turned out- I would keep my version of the recipe for next time.  Feeds two and is an easy but delicious one-pot meal.  I made this in my French pot, my favorite cooking tool in the kitchen!


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 whole chicken (3 1/2 to 4 pounds), cut into 10 pieces  (I used four bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 pound brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 2 medium shallots, thinly sliced  (I used a bunch of minced garlic)
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard  (I used whole grain mustard that I bought in Paris!)
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large ovenproof skillet, heat oil over medium-high. Season chicken with salt and pepper. In batches, cook chicken until browned, about 6 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate, then add brussels sprouts and shallots to pan. Saute until golden brown, 3 minutes. Stir in mustard and cook 1 minute. Add vinegar and broth, return chicken to pan, and bring to a rapid simmer.
  2. Transfer pan to oven and braise until chicken is cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Add cream to pan and swirl to combine; season with salt and pepper.  (I removed the chicken before adding the cream, and then spooned it over top once plated.)

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Recipe #313: Baked Whole Trout

My first trip to Costco resulted in my first time purchasing (and then cooking) whole fish.  It was so fresh and moist baking it this way.  The bones are a little annoying, but the work is worth it for how flavorful this turned out.  The trout was already gutted and cleaned, so it was a simple dish to make.

Prepped and ready for the oven

INGREDIENTS, amounts as needed/to taste:

Whole trout
Dried dill weed
Dried thyme
Lemon slices
Sliced Onions
White wine (or chicken broth or water)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Oil a metal baking/roasting pan.  Season insides of fish with dill, thyme, salt, and pepper, and stuff with onions.  Oil the outside of the fish and season the outsides too.  Lay lemon slices on top.  Pour over a little white wine on each fish.  Bake for 10 minutes.  Pour more wine over and bake another 10, until the fish flakes easily.  Remove heads and tails and serve.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Recipe #312: Caprese Garlic Bread

My sister was raving about this recipe, so I had to try it.  Her high praise wasn't for nothing- this is delicious.  I used four mini loaves of ciabatta and a whole stick of butter.  I also found a bottle of balsamic glaze at the store instead of having to make it myself.  This is from


1 loaf ciabatta bread, horizontally cut in half
4 tablespoons salted butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
12 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 medium tomatoes, sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place both sides of the baguette on a large baking sheet with the cut side up.
2. In a small bowl, combine butter and garlic and spread evenly on bread halves. Place the mozzarella cheese slices on top of the bread, making sure the cheese covers the bread completely. Bake the bread for 12-15 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
3. While the bread is in the oven, make the balsamic reduction. Place the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan. Bring the vinegar to a boil, decrease the heat to low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is reduced by about half. This should only take about 5-7 minutes. Set aside.
4. Remove the bread from oven. Top the bread with tomato slices. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add the fresh basil and drizzle with balsamic reduction. Cut into slices and serve.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Recipe #311: Slow Cooker Maple Country Style Ribs

My friend told me about this recipe from  I love the sweetness from the syrup and the hint of cinnamon.  They fell right off the bone.  The changes I made was to double the sauce PLUS one extra tablespoon of maple syrup, because I had more than 1.5lbs of meat (2.7lbs, to be exact).  I also used half of a fresh onion instead of dehydrated.


1 1/2 pounds country style pork ribs
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons dried minced onion
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 dash ground black pepper
1.Combine ribs, maple syrup, soy sauce, minced onion, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, garlic powder and pepper in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on Low for 7 to 9 hours.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Recipe #310: Bacon-y Potato Soup

Oh man this one is just perfection.  I made a couple changes, marked in red.  It makes a LOT of soup (serves 7-8) and is perfect for this cold weather we're having.  This is another winner from

1 pound bacon, chopped
2 stalks celery, diced
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
8 potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 cups chicken stock, or enough to cover

3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
3 teaspoons chopped fresh cilantro  (I used green onion instead)
salt and pepper to taste
1.In a Dutch oven, cook the bacon over medium heat until done. Remove bacon from pan, and set aside. Drain off all but 1/4 cup of the bacon grease.
2.Cook celery and onion in reserved bacon drippings until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, and continue cooking for 1 to 2 minutes. Add cubed potatoes, and toss to coat. Saute for 3 to 4 minutes. Return bacon to the pan, and add enough chicken stock to just cover the potatoes. Cover, and simmer until potatoes are tender.  (about 25 minutes or so- test with a fork)
3.In a separate pan, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour. Cook, stirring constantly, for 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in the heavy cream, tarragon, and cilantro. Bring the cream mixture to a boil, and cook, stirring constantly, until thickened. Stir the cream mixture into the potato mixture. Puree about 1/2 the soup (I used a potato masher to lightly mash the entire thing, but leaving plenty of potato chunks), and return to the pan. Adjust seasonings to taste.  Top with shredded cheese.