Taco…Wednesday?

Posted on March 30, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

Everyone knows I only eat meat about once a week. I like meat, for me it’s just too expensive to buy a lot of. Most of the time, my once a week meat is eaten out, or delivered. Last week I got sushi and it was SO GOOD. This week, I had a chicken breast left over from the last time I made chicken, and decided to cook it with some veggies. It ended up being tacos because I just had my giant tortilla shells from the vegan burritos I made last week.

Protein is important for a lot of things, weight loss, muscle growth, ect. I hadn’t lost any weight in the past week and I think it was a mixture of not eating enough, and not getting enough protein. I ordered a thing of plant based protein that should be here today, but in the meantime I decided to eat the chicken. Human health is a tricky thing, it shouldn’t be, but it is. We need a good balance of a lot of things, or our bodies won’t work correctly. You can live very well on a plant based diet, but you just have to make sure that you’re getting everything that your body needs.

While I’m not a huge fan of using supplements in place of getting nutrients naturally, sometimes it’s ok. That’s why I’m going to try adding the plant based protein powder. If it doesn’t work, or if I have weird side effects, I’ll stop. When Rocky and I were together, he gave me some vitamin D tablets to help with the winter blues, but they didn’t help, so I stopped. I really do believe that the best way to get everything you need is from the food you eat. That’s why I like to eat all the veggies I do. I had a Dr once say that your body only uses what you need, then you pee the rest out. It makes sense, our bodies do know what they’re doing.

Now, back to the food. Once again this is a very simple recipe, and if you want to cut the carbs you can just eat it without the tortilla. The important part about cooking chicken is to make sure that you don’t overcook it so it gets dry. That means lower heat and patience.

Giant Chicken and Veggie Tacos

Here’s what to get from the store:

Chicken Breast
Asparagus
Zucchini
Black Beans
Chickpeas
Tortilla
Cheddar cheese
Guyere

Giant Chicken and Veggie Taco

1 chicken breast, cubed
4 cloves garlic, diced
1/2 zucchini, diced
5 spears asparagus, diced
1/4 cup chick peans
1/4 cup black beans
Salt, pepper, paprika
Lemon Juice
Tortillas
Cheddar
Guyere
Spinach

  1. In a saute pan, saute the chicken until almost cooked.
  2. Add the garlic, veggies, with seasonings until the asparagus is bright green.
  3. Add the beans and the lemon juice, just a splash.
  4. Serve in a tortilla with the spinach and cheeses, top with sriracha if you like.

Super simple. I honestly don’t even like writing recipes for something so simple, but I do understand that some people need more instruction with cooking because they’re new at that, and I’m totally fine with that.

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That’s a Hot Chick

Posted on March 14, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: |

So, normally, as I’m sure you all know, I do vegetarian and vegan dishes. However, a few weeks ago I was stumped and uninspired. So what does one do when that happens? Post on Facebook and ask for suggestions! I didn’t get many, but one was a healthier soul food option.

Now, originally this was supposed to be a baked fried chicken using milled flax seed, however, since I didn’t use egg in mixture, the breading didn’t stay on. It did however, keep the chicken moist. Because we all know the worst thing is dry poultry.

This recipe is pretty simple, and even though the breading fell off for me, I’m going to write it with the breading because it did help with the moisture. Surprisingly enough, it was also pretty cheap, thanks to Aldi prices.

My goal for this recipe is to make something that feels like a BBQ meal, without actually being too terrible for you. The sauce that I made is low in sugar (I used honey) and the flavor comes from spices. The warm salad served with it is very simple with no added butter.

Baked Chicken over a warm bean salad with sweet and spicy BBQ sauce

 

Here’s what to get from the store:

Boneless Chicken Breasts
Milled Flax Seed
Whole Wheat Flour
Almond Milk
Apple cider vinegar
Tomato Paste
Sriracha
Chickpeas
Black Beans
Mini Peppers
Asparagus

Baked “Fried” Chicken

Boneless Chicken Breast
Almond Milk
Equal parts milled flax seed and Wheat Flour
Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder, Parsley, Oregano, Paprika

  1. Put the almond milk in one bowl, and the flours with the seasoning in another.
  2. Dip each breast in the milk, then the flour, twice each.
  3. In a preheated cast iron skillet, brown on each side, then put in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes or until cooked through.

Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce

3 cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 bottle of apple cider vinegar
1 can of tomato paste
1/4 cup honey
Sriracha
Soy sauce
Dijon Mustard
Salt, pepper, paprika, dried mustard, turmeric, cumin

  1. Sauté the garlic until cooked, add the vinegar and tomato. Stir until combined.
  2. Add the honey, mustard, soy sauce and some of the spices. Warm to almost boiling. Taste to adjust seasoning. Remove from heat until ready to use.

Warm Bean Salad

1/4 cup chickpeas
1/4 cup black beans
4 stalks asparagus, diced
4 mini sweet peppers, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
Salt and pepper

  1. Sauté the garlic, then add the asparagus and peppers until the asparagus is bring green. Make sure to add salt and pepper.
  2. Add the beans, and only sauté until warmed through.

This was the first meat dish I’ve made in a long time, I don’t think I’ve even bought meat since I’ve moved. As I’ve said before, I’m not a vegetarian, not really, I just don’t eat a lot of meat. I do feel that we eat way too much meat, among other things. Balance is key, my friends.

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Throw it in, Why not?

Posted on April 24, 2013. Filed under: Main Course | Tags: , , |

Most Mondays, my friend Calli comes over and I cook something, watch Food Network and have a few drinks. Yea, we’re exciting. We’ve bonded over the past couple of months because we both love cooking and food so much. She’s also pretty open minded to trying stuff, which is awesome because Matt (Love that man, but really) is very picky and it’s hard to get him to try food. All day yesterday I was thinking about cheese, chicken and rice. So, when I took Matt to work, I grabbed some groceries. I originally wanted chicken breast, but at that point they only had frozen ones and I just didn’t have time to thaw them, so I went for some boneless thighs instead. I like white meat better, but I figured, why not? Being able to experiment with my food is a lot of fun and it helps me discover different things. What I made wasn’t at all what I imagined in my head, but it was really good. The hardest part about this dish is the time it takes to chop everything up, but it’s worth it.

Cheesy Rice and Chicken Bake

1 white onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
6 boneless chicken thighs, cut to pieces
2 bunches of broccoli, chopped
2-3 cups of brown rice (I used Minute)
2 cups of shredded cheese, Mozzarella and Colby Jack
1 can of Cream of Mushroom Soup
Balsamic Vinegar
Salt, Pepper, paprika, dill and fennel to taste

  1. Saute the onion and garlic in some olive oil, adding a splash of Balsamic, salt and pepper. Cook until transparent.
  2. Add in the thighs, with a little more oil and cook through. Add the fennel at this time as well.
  3. Once the thighs are cooked, add in the broccoli and start cooking the rice.
  4. When the rice is cooked, add it into the chicken mixture and spread half into a 9 x 13 pan, mixing in the cheese and soup. Mix in the rest of the rice and chicken mixutre. Sprinkle with dill and paprika and cover with remaining cheese. Cook in the oven at 350 for about 5 minutes, just until the cheese is melted. Serve right away, add some Siracha is you need an extra kick.
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Sauces!

Posted on September 23, 2012. Filed under: Main Course | Tags: , , |

I’ve been working for Buffalo Wild Wings for a little over 2.5 years. Last November, I stopped eating there. It was a mixture of lack of healthy food options and the inability to make anything different than what was on the menu. I generally didn’t miss it unless I was on a double or REALLY hungover. I eventually got used to the doubles without food, I started bringing some snacks that would tide me over until I was done, and I stopped coming hung over to work (well, there’s been a few times in the past year, but on well). But, I do really love the sauces.

Matt and I go to other wing places every once in a while, but their sauces aren’t as good as BDubs. I had been thinking about buying some a few times, but never got a chance, until the owner came in and tipped me $20 for bringing him and his associates pops. I decided to buy 4 of them. A crate there is 3 sauces and is a little over $10, and a 4th brought my total to $16 after tax, not a bad deal if you think about it. I bought three of my favorites, medium, garlic parm, and hot bbq, and Matt’s favorite, Asian zing. We really hadn’t done much with them, just dip quesdillas in them, but Matt decided last night to make some chicken and rice with them. He made me garlic parm chicken and himself Asian zing chicken. He had wanted to put something else besides just chicken rice and sauce, but Walmart didn’t really have any peppers at 1 am (weird, right??) so we just went with chicken, rice and some Italian blend cheese.  I’d put a recipe, but let’s face it, it’s a self explanatory recipe. I really liked it. It was simple and filling and really good. It had a kick of garlic that I love and the cheese blended well. I’d want him to make it again.

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Cheesey!!

Posted on September 16, 2012. Filed under: Deserts, Main Course | Tags: , , , |

Earlier in the week when I wasn’t feeling well, I bought some Tostino’s Zesty Taco Cheese Dip. Honestly, I’m still not sure why I did that. It was alright, but nothing that I’d normally eat. I’m going to blame the fact that I was sick. Matt made a dip with some ground beef, lettuce and sour cream which was really good. Today I thought I’d try something different and make a chicken dish with the rest of the taco dip, and it turned out really good, I’m impressed with myself. It was really simple to make and it didn’t take that long after the chicken thawed. I also had some sweet potatoes that were left at my house by a friend, and Matt had told him I would make sweet potato pie. I’d never actually made sweet potato pie before, but it couldn’t be that hard, right? Along with that I made some sweet potato mash because hey, there’s 4 potatoes so why not?

The chicken was a success, and I’m hoping the pie will be, it’s still cooling. Hope you try it out yourself!

Zesty Cheesy Chicken

2 boneless chicken breasts
Salt and Peper
Paprika
Chili Powder
1/2 cp Tostino’s Zesty Taco Dip
2 cps rice, cooked

  1. Season the chicken with salt, peper, paprika and chili powder. Pan fry with some oil until cooked through.
  2. Add the taco dip and heat until warm, serve over rice.

Sweet Potato Pie
(From http://allrecipes.com/recipe/sweet-potato-pie-i/)

1 (1 pound) sweet potato
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust

  1.  Boil sweet potato whole in skin for 40 to 50 minutes, or until done. Run cold water over the sweet potato, and remove the skin.
  2. Break apart sweet potato in a bowl. Add butter, and mix well with mixer. Stir in sugar, milk, eggs, nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until mixture is smooth. Pour filling into an unbaked pie crust.
  3. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 55 to 60 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Pie will puff up like a souffle, and then will sink down as it cools.

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Stuffed Chicken!

Posted on February 14, 2012. Filed under: Main Course | Tags: , , |

I’m not sure if I’ve actually posted this recipe before or not, because I have made it before, but I’m posting it again. The other day I wanted to make stuffed chicken. Matt doesn’t like broccoli, so I wanted to change it up and stuff it with something different, but I couldn’t decide what, so Matt said broccoli would be fine. I had to have asked him about five times if it was, so I just went with it. I also felt like mashed sweet potato. Neil had made some spicy sweet potato mash before and I wanted to kind of go in the same vein, but not nearly as spicy. The biggest issue I found with the sweet potato mash was that the potatoes HAVE to boil for a very long time. I thought I had boiled them enough, but I hadn’t so they weren’t as soft as I had hoped, but I got it to smooth out. Enjoy!

Broccoli and Chedder stuffed Chicken

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 heads fresh broccoli
1 cup sharp cheddar
Fresh ground salt and pepper to taste
Spray of lemon juice

  1. Wrap each breast in plastic wrap and pound out with a meat hammer, or a rolling pin. Season each side with salt and pepper.
  2. Cut the broccoli into small pieces, mix with the cheddar, salt, pepper and lemon juice. Put a small spoonful in the middle of each breast, and roll. Place ends down on a foiled lined cookie sheet. Bake at 400 for 40 minutes. Half way through, put some cheddar cheese on top, if you wish. Serve with sweet potato mash.

Cinnamon Garlic Sweet Potato Mash

3 large sweet potatoes, boiled a peeled
1 tsp garlic salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp brown sugar
Splash of milk

  1. Add boiled potatoes to a mixer, cut into chunks if you need to. Beat with the paddle until smooth. Add milk and seasonings and mix until smooth. If you didn’t boil long enough and the potatoes are still a bit hard, throw them in your food processor for a minute.
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Picking apples and awesome dinner!

Posted on October 13, 2011. Filed under: Deserts, Main Course | Tags: , , , , |

It’s been really nice out for the past few weeks. REALLY nice. Tuesday Matt and I went to the beach. No joke. I stood in the water for a bit, but didn’t swim. Anyway, Wednesday it was just as nice and I REALLY wanted to pick apples. For some weird reason, Matt had never been to County Line Orchard and he’d lived in Valpo his whole life, so we had to go. Most of the trees were picked through, except some of the sour apples which are more than perfect for baking. I went a little over board and got 14 pounds, which turned into 1 9 in apple pie and a giant pot of apple sauce. The best part about last night though, was dinner. I asked Neil and Maureen what they were up to and they didn’t have any plans, so I decided to make dinner. Or, really, Matt decided to make dinner. He made some fantastic grilled chicken mozzerella. It was so good!

Grilled Chicken Mozzerella
4 boneless chicken breasts
Wostchire Sauce
Red Wine Vinegar
Brown Sugar
Garlic Salt
Sea Salt
Pepper (Red and Black)
Caynee
Ragu Pasta Sauce
Linguinee
Mozzerella Cheese

  1. Set up your grill. While the coals are soaking, make your sauce. Combine Wostschire sauce, vinigar, sugar, salts, peppers and caynee. You may want to taste it part of the way through to make sure it’s not too spicy/sweet. Use this sauce as a baste while you are grilling your chicken.
  2. While you are grilling your chicken, cook the pasta al dente and warm your sauce. When the chicken is finished, cut the breasts in half and put the sliced mozzerella cheese on top to melt.
  3. Serve the chicken over pasta, covering the sauce and garnishing with fresh basil leaves.

 

Fresh Apple Pie
2 pounds of tart apples (I used Juiblee Fugji)
Flour
Cinnamon
Sugar
Ground Cloves
Your Favorite pie crust for 1 9 in pie

  1. Cut the apples and mix them with the four, cinnamon, sugar and cloves, covering each part of the apple. Fill the pie crust with the apples and put the rest of the crust on top. Bake at 425 for 20 mins. After 20 mins, put some butter through the crust into the apples and bake another 20 mins.

 

Apple Sauce
(this can be whatever mixture you want!)

10 pounds of apples, sliced
Sugar
Cinnamon
Cloves
Sugar
Water
Vanilla

  1. Put the apples, sugar, cinnamon, cloves, sugar, water and vanilla into a large pot over the stove. Turn the heat on medium-high. Make sure to stir and squish the apples. You can leave it as lumpy (I like lumpy) or smooth as you want. The smoother the sauce, the longer it takes to cook.
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The Expirment

Posted on July 13, 2011. Filed under: Main Course | Tags: , , , , |

I’m not sure how it came up, but I really wanted to make pannini. We don’t have a pannini grill, but I still wanted to make it. I then thought maybe I could just grill the thing. I wanted to grill the chicken for it anyway, so why not try and grill the sandwich? Well, I decided to try it out. I learned that bread grills really fast (as in, part of it burned) and I probably should’ve gotten different bread, maybe something a bit thicker like sourdough instead of the 15 grain I did. It still turned out pretty amazing. I made a side of sweet potato fries which goes with it perfectly!

Grilled Chicken Pannini with basil pesto, fresh mozzerella, and tomato

1 pkg boneless, skinless chicken tenderloins
1 tomato
Basil Pesto sauce (either store bought or home made)
Fresh mozzerella
Salt and pepper
Oregeno
Bread of your choosing

  1. Salt and pepper your chicken before grilling them. Make sure to grill them 100%
  2. Spread the pesto on one side of each of the bread (2 pieces for each sandwich). Layer cheese, tomato and chicken and sprinkle with oregeno.
  3. Put the entire sandwich on the grill, but flip it quickly! It burns easily if the grill is very hot.

Sweet Potato Fries

2 large sweet potatoes
Olive Oil
Salt, Pepper, and Paprika to taste

  1. Slice the potatoes into rounds then cut them in half. Drizzle them with olive oil and mix in the salt, pepper, and paprika.
  2. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 25 minutes or until soft. Serve warm.

 

Basil Pesto

(from http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/basil-pesto-recipe2/index.html )

2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup pine nuts
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  1. Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped. Add 1/2 cup of the oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
  2.  If using immediately, add all the remaining oil and pulse until smooth. Transfer the pesto to a large serving bowl.

 

 

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Grill

Posted on June 7, 2011. Filed under: Dining | Tags: , , |

I’ve been watching a lot of Best in Smoke lately. They have to grill everything on that show. I wanted to make something for Neil and Maureen for their 1 year anniversy, and decided to make them cilantro lime tequilla grilled chicken tacos complete with grilled peppers and onions, and a tropical fruit salad I also grilled. Everything was pretty good, except I dropped quite a few different things on the ground, oh well, there was still a lot to be eaten. There’s not really any recipes for any of this, the chicken was marinated in tequilla, lime juice and cilantro for about 2 hrs before going on the grill, and the fruit salad was in lemon juice and spiced rum for about an hour. Don’t leave the fruit on the grill to long or else they’ll start caramelizing and stick.

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That Felt AWESOME

Posted on January 18, 2011. Filed under: Main Course | Tags: |

I finally got to cook dinner for the roomies (and Matt, but he’s at work so his is in the fridge) and I had a lot of fun. (Yea, I said it, fun).  I made what I told you earlier, broccoli and cheddar/colby stuffed chicken with a side of mixed greens with a garlic vingerette dressing and honeyed pears in puffed pastry. I used a recipe for the pears that I mentioned in an old post, Got That Itch, and the chicken I just winged it. The hardest part of the whole thing was the shopping. I had the correct amounts for the pears because I was following a recipe, but I was guessing for the chicken and bought WAY to much. Like 2.5 pounds of cheese, and 3 large globes of broccoli (fresh is better!) The vanilla bean for the pears was suprisingly hard to find. I finally found one bean in a small glass jar that cost me upwards of $10. (Sadly, that’s not the most expensive spice I’ve bought, that goes to the ground cardamon I bought for Matt’s soup, that was almost $13 for a small bottle). With all of that, here’s how to make the chicken!

Broccoli and Cheese Stuffed Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 globe fresh broccoli
1/2 pound mixed cheddar and colby
Salt and pepper to taste

  1. Wrap each chicken breast in plastic wrap, or wax paper, and flatten with a meat cleaver (or a rolling pin, because that’s what we have)
  2. Chop the broccoli into small pieces and steam.
  3. Grate and mix cheese in a bowl, mix broccoli in.
  4. Put a generous amount of the broccoli and cheese mixture in the middle of each flattened breast, roll up and place in a 9 x 13 lined pan. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the top.
  5. If you have any extra broccoli and cheese mix, place a small amount of top of the chicken.
  6. Bake at 425 for 20-25 minutes or until the thickest piece of chicken is cut through (make a small cut through the largest part and see if it’s pink or not).
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