Monday, February 9, 2015

Bruschetta with Tomatoes and Basil

This bruschetta with fresh tomatoes and basil
couldn't be easier. It's a favorite that's always 
on the menu when we visit the kids in Atlanta. 
Telaryn doesn't follow a recipe and after 
you've made if once you won't need to either.
Bruschetta (pronounced brusketta), 
is a classic Italian appetizer. It's a simple
 mixture of chopped fresh tomatoes,
fresh basil leaves, salt, pepper, garlic,
 and olive oil. That's it! Use as many
tomatoes as you like; season them with salt
and pepper; add some minced garlic and enough
chopped basil leaves to give it color and flavor.
Drizzle it all with olive oil until it is well coated.
It's mixed up earlier in the day so that the flavors
have time to marinade, about 8 hours. That makes
it a nice make-ahead dish. It will last in the 
refrigerator a few days. Don't know for sure 
because it usually doesn't last that long with us.
Slice a baguette and brush one side with olive oil.
Toast oil-side down on a baking sheet for about 5
minutes in a 450º oven. Serve olive oil side up
topped with tomato-basil mixture.
You can garnish it with a small basil leaf
 or a dollop of pesto.
My measurements here are a starting point.
It's also good on fish; Tilapia and Salmon.

 Bruschetta with Tomatoes and Basil
4 plum tomatoes, chopped
4 T basil leaves, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 t salt
1/4 t pepper
2-3 T olive oil
Combine and refrigerate, covered for 8 hours.
Serve atop toasted baguettes.

Links:  How to Propagate Basil,
 Between Naps On The Porch

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Poppy Seed Chicken

It's creamy, rich, and covered in a buttery 
crumb topping. This is a very popular 
casserole in the South. I think it's a favorite 
dish to take to a new neighbor, a new mom,
 or anyone that needs a good comfort dinner.
It's another good way to use leftover roast chicken.
You'll need 2 cups of cooked chicken, cut up and 
seasoned with salt and pepper.
Mix the chicken, soup, sour cream,  half the 
poppy seeds,  and half the crushed crackers. 
This recipe doubles easily. When you do, you can
 use 1 can cream of chicken soup and 1 can of
 cream of celery soup. 
 For the topping combine he remaining crumbs
and poppy seeds with the melted butter.
 Put the chicken in a greased 8X8 casserole. 
Sprinkle on the topping.
 Bake @350º for 30-35 minutes
 until the crumbs are golden.
Serve with rice, a vegetable, and salad.

Poppy Seed Chicken
2 C cubed cooked chicken
salt and pepper to taste
1 cream of chicken soup
1/2C  sour cream
2 t poppy seeds
1 stack of Ritz crackers,crushed
1/2 stick butter, (1/4C) melted
Season cut-up chicken with salt and pepper. Add to
a large bowl with soup, sour cream, 1t poppy seeds,
 and half of the crushed Ritz crackers. 
Put into a greased 8X8 casserole. Combine the 
remaining crushed crackers, the remaining 
1t poppy seeds, and the melted butter in a bowl
 and sprinkle on top. Bake @350º for 35 minutes.
Serves 4
*double recipe and put in a 9X13 casserole

Monday, January 26, 2015

Crock Pot Coconut Curry Chicken

This is the same recipe I've made on the stove top
and posted here except today I made it in the
crock pot. Couldn't be easier and just as delicious!
I thought I'd share how easily it is to convert
a braised recipe to the crock pot. Even easier is the
 fact that everything is pretty much just thrown in;
no extra browning or sauteing in a separate pan.
 I always like to season the chicken with
 salt and pepper before I add more seasonings.
Evenly sprinkle on the the seasonings.
Scatter on the chopped onion, apple, and garlic
Combine the broth and the coconut milk.
Pour over all.
Cover and cook on low for 6 hours
Combine the cornstarch with water and
stir into the pot. Return lid and cook on 
high for 15 minutes to thicken.
Serve over rice and sprinkle on a
generous amount of chopped cilantro.

Crock Pot Coconut Curry Chicken
8 chicken thighs, skinned
1-1/2 t salt
1-1/2 t sugar
1 t ginger
1/2 t pepper
1/2 t garlic powder or
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 t cayenne pepper
2 T curry powder
1 large apple, peeled and chopped
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
1 C coconut milk
1 C chicken broth
3 T cornstarch, for thickening

Place the chicken thighs in a large crock pot.
Sprinkle evenly with seasonings. Add the chopped
apple, onion, and garlic. Heat 1 C water in  a 2C
 glass measuring cup with 1 t chicken bullion to
make 1 C broth. Add (1C) coconut milk to the
2C line and combine. Pour evenly over the
contents in the crock pot. Cover and cook on
low at least 6 hours. Combine the 3T
cornstarch with about 1/2 C cold water.
Add to the crock pot stirring to blend
Cook on high for 15 minutes to thicken.
Serve over rice and top with
chopped fresh cilantro.
serves 4


Sunday, January 18, 2015

Cobbler In A Jar

You can make this yummy treat right now!
It's that easy!
Use any fresh fruit you have and just a
few basic pantry staples. You'll also need 
four 1/2-pint canning jars (1 C).
 Peel (if necessary) and cut up the fruit to have 
about 2-1/2 C. I used peaches and strawberries.
Think of the yummy combinations!
In a small bowl mix the 3 dry ingredients.
 Add the fruit to 1/2 pint canning jars,
top with the dry mixture, 
then add a pat of butter,
 Put the jars in a baking pan to make it easy to 
transfer in and out of the oven.
 Don't let the jars touch.
 Bake @350º about 50-60 minutes. 
I like that I can easily just make 2.
 Let cool a bit and top with whipped cream. 
A very nice afternoon coffee treat.
Let the jars cool completely and
screw on the tops. This make them
perfect for picnics, lunch boxes, or 
small gifts. If you don't have canning jars
 you can bake these baby cobblers in a
 pretty ovenproof tea cup. 
This recipe makes 4, but I cut the 
recipe in half today for the 2 of us. 

Cobbler In A Jar
2-1/2 C fresh fruit
1/2 C flour
1/2 C sugar
1/4 t salt
4 T butter
Peel and cut up the fruit and divide
among four 1/2 pint canning jars.
Combine the sugar, flour, and salt in
a small bowl. Top the fruit with the
mixture, dividing evenly; about 1/4 C
in each. Put 1T of butter on top.
Pace in a pan, do not let the jars touch,
Bake @350º for 50-60 minutes.
Serve warm with ice cream or
whipped cream. 
let cool completely to cap.


Wednesday, January 14, 2015

3 Ingredient Lemon-Butter Shrimp

This is as easy as it gets!
A stick of butter, a lemon, and a packet
of dry Italian salad dressing mix are all
you need for the shrimp. 
 I keep bags of raw, frozen, deveined,
shrimp in the freezer so I can whip up
this simple dinner whenever I please.
You can use fresh or frozen shrimp. If frozen
just run cold water over them in a colander
 a few times to thaw. Remove shells and pat dry.
Melt the butter in a skillet or sheet pan
in a 350º oven. Remove the pan and lay on
the lemon slices over the butter
Layer on the shrimp. Sprinkle the dry
Italian dressing mix evenly over the shrimp.
 Return the pan to the oven and bake for
15 minutes until opaque. 
 Some options: Add 2-3 garlic cloves, minced to
the butter, if you're garlic lovers like we are.
Add 1 15-oz can diced tomatoes, drained when
 you add the lemon. If you don't have fresh lemon,
 use 2-3 T refrigerated lemon juice in the butter.
Serve over pasta or have lots of warm
crusty French bread for 'sauce-dipping'.

3 Ingredient Lemon Butter Shrimp
1 lb XL shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 stick butter
1 lemon, thinly sliced
1 pkt. Italian salad dressing mix 
(Good Seasons)
Melt the butter in a skillet or sheet pan
in a 350º oven. Remove the pan and lay on 
the lemon slices over the butter
Layer on the shrimp. Sprinkle the dry
Italian dressing mix evenly over the shrimp.
Return the pan to the oven and bake for
15 minutes until opaque. 


Thursday, January 8, 2015

Brown Sugar Glazed Meatloaf

We love meatloaf. Whenever I make meatloaf
 I always wonder why I don't make it more often. 
It's easy, it can be mixed up earlier in the day and
 baked when we're ready, and it smells great!  
It also gives us leftovers for great sandwiches 
the next day. Here's another one of my favorites. 
This one has a sweet BBQ-like glaze. I usually 
double the glaze ingredients so that we'll have
 extra to drizzle over the slices and also have
 some for the sandwiches on toasted bread.
I use saltine crackers in this one. I always
 save the little cellophane crackers that
you get with chili or soups.

Now you now what to do with them.
 You'll need a small onion, chopped.
 Combine all the ingredients.
Mix well with a fork.
 Plop the mixture into a shallow casserole 
and shape into a loaf
 Combine the glaze ingredients. I doubled it this
 time so that we'd have extra for spooning on each
slice and for the meatloaf sandwiches the next day.
  Spoon the glaze over the meatloaf covering it completely.
If you've doubled the ingredients, heat the 
remaining sauce until bubbly.
 Bake @350º for 1 hour. I scooped up the brown 
meat juices and added that to the remaining sauce.
 Remove to a platter and let sit for about 5 minutes.
 Moist thick slices.
 Sprinkle with chopped fresh rosemary.
 (The lumps are the added meat juices)
Serve with mashed potatoes and drizzle
extra sauce over the slices. 

Brown Sugar Glazed Meatloaf
2 lbs ground beef
1 onion, chopped
2 eggs
3/4 C crushed saltine crackers (about 18-20)
3/4 C milk
1-1/2 t salt
1/2 t pepper
1/2 t ginger
Combine all ingredients until well mixed. Shape into a
loaf and put in a shallow casserole. Top with glaze
completely covering. Bake @350º for 1 hr.
1/2 C brown sugar
1/2 C ketchup
1 T Worcestershire sauce
Combine in a bowl. Double the recipe
if you want extra sauce for the slices
and for leftover sandwiches.
1 sprig fresh rosemary, sprigs removed from the stem
and chopped for sprinkling on top.