Sunday, March 29, 2009

Asian Salad

2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon (generous) Asian sesame oil
1 navel orange
1 6-ounce bag baby spinach leaves
1 avocado, halved, pitted, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch wedges

Whisk first 5 ingredients in large bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set dressing aside.
Cut off peel and white pith from orange. Cut orange into 1/3-inch rounds; cut rounds crosswise in half. Add spinach to dressing; toss to coat. Add avocado and orange; toss gently.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Dinner in a Jar - homemade caramel sauce

I found this whilst blog hopping the other day and decided I should share it with all of you after telling Kristen about it earlier!

Here goes:

1/3 c. heavy whipping cream
1/3 c. butter (5-1/3 Tb), cut into chunks
1 c. packed brown sugar
2 Tb light Karo syrup

Combine all ingredients into a pot and cook and stir over Medium heat until it begins to boil. Remove from heat. You can serve right away or store in a tupperware in the refrigerator. When you are ready to have some, take out of fridge and microwave approximately 20 seconds (less if you've already eaten some of course) and caramel will thin down a bit for you.

This really is the best caramel sauce I've tasted and I am so glad I found this recipe! I ate almost half of the batch I made just with a spoon, no ice cream, cookies, sundaes or desserts involved. It is delicious!

recipe found at

Crockpot turkey breast, mmm!

This is absolutely delicious and about the easiest way I've ever made a turkey breast.

You'll need:
Large crockpot (big enough to hold a turkey breast plus some liquid)
1 turkey breast
1 medium yellow onion, chopped in BIG chunks
1 can chicken broth (or 2 cups white wine)
1 stick butter in chunks
salt and pepper to taste (no salt if using chkn broth that isn't low sodium)

Refrigerate turkey breast for 1-1/2 to 2 days in refridgerator.

Remove turkey from netting and wrapper and more netting (if you have one like mine). Put pouch of gravy on plate and store in fridge for later. Wash turkey in sink with water and then pat dry with paper towels. Place in bottom of crock pot. Wash hands.

Chop up onion in big chunks and place all around and on top of turkey breast. Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper. Drop in chunks of butter. Pour can of chicken broth all over turkey.

Cover and cook on Low for 8 hours. I cooked mine (still partially frozen after 1 day in fridge, eek!) on Hi for 5.5 hours then checked temperature and it was 190+ and already done. I left it on Stay Warm for the remaining 2 hours til dinner and it was perfect!

I served mine with:
Cornbread stuffing and Green Bean Casserole

Toasted cornbread stuffing:

For the stuffing, I just made a box mix because they're easy and I like them! After it was cooked, I put it in a casserole and put in the oven for about 5-10 minutes with the green bean casserole at 350.

Green Bean Casserole

2 cans French cut green beans, drained
1 can Cream of Mushroom
1/2 can of milk
Couple shakes of pepper and a shake of cayenne paper
1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese (I'd have used more but I ran out! Try 1/2 cup in yours)
french fried onions

Stir all ingredients together in medium bowl, then transfer to a glass casserole. Top with fried onions and bake at 350 for approximately 30 minutes or until warm through and bubbly.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Cafe Rio Chicken, Lime Rice, and Beans


1/2 bottle Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
3 cloves garlic minced
2 chicken breasts (frozen)

Place all ingredients into crock-pot for 4 hours on high. Shred and Cook an additional hour.
(I didn't go the full hour, I just let it cook while I made the rice and beans)


1 Tbsp. oil
2 c. long grain rice (3 c. water)
cilantro, finely chopped
juice of a lime
1 tsp. crushed garlic

Heat oil in a large skillet. Add rice, cilantro, and garlic. Saute 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add water and lime juice and bring to boil. Then reduce heat and simmer until all the liquid is absorbed by the rice (about 20 minutes).


1 Can Black Beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/3 cup tomato juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro

In a nonstick skillet, cook garlic and cumin in olive oil over medium heat until you can smell it. Add beans, tomato juice, and salt. Continually stir until heated through. Just before serving stir in the cilantro.

(I've made it that way too but last night I just added some Cumin and Minced Garlic to the can of beans and heated)


Take a pan of heated oil, place a flour tortilla in for a few seconds until it starts bubbling up, then flip over and do same thing.

Or, I've also made the following homemade tortillas, which never seem to turn out quite in the shape of tortillas, but maybe you'll have better luck!

Homemade tortillas:
3 C. flour
1/2 C. veggie or olive oil
1 1/8 C. luke warm water
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder

Mix all ingredients and knead. If too hard to knead, add a little water but if too sticky add a little more flour. Let stand for about 10 minutes. Makes about 12 small balls. Flatten each by rolling them out and then cook them in a frying pan


Place Rice, Beans, Chicken, (Cheese optional) all on the tortilla! You can wrap as burrito or eat taco style. Enjoy!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Asian Pork and Mushroom Burgers

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 ounces sliced mushrooms 
  • 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt, divided
  • 1 3/4 ground pork
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce, divided
  • 3 teaspoons Asian sesame oil, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon hot chili sauce (such as sriracha)
  • redpepper, carrot, cilantro and lettuce for burger toppings if desired

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add  garlic; sauté 2 minutes. Add mushrooms. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt; sauté until mushrooms are tender, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat; cool in skillet.  Once they are cool, roughly chop up the mixture.

Place pork in large bowl. Mix in 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, cracked pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, then fold in mushroom mixture. Shape into patties.

Whisk hoisin sauce, ginger, vinegar, chili sauce, and remaining 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 2 teaspoons sesame oil in small bowl for sauce. DO AHEAD: Burgers and sauce can be made 6 hours ahead. Cover separately; chill.

Spray grill rack with nonstick spray. Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat ). Grill burgers until cooked through. Place burgers on buns and top with sauce, pepper, lettuce, carrot and cilantro however you like it!