Category Archives: Supper

Jalapeno Popper Meatloaf

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57337777-db00-4d43-ab42-3a47a798a85f_zps77bacdb4I am in love with jalapeno poppers….You know, the fresh jalapeno kind stuffed with cream cheese and wrapped with bacon.  YUM!!!!  These things….

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Maybe it’s because I don’t make them very often since they’re pretty time consuming – but DEFINITELY worth the time.  Just never eat a huge amount of the poppers on an empty stomach!  I’m not going to cross over into the TMI zone.  I promise!  Well, I promise THIS time anyways.  Just heed my advise!

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Meatloaf!  Back to meatloaf!  How does this relate to meatloaf?  Well, sometimes I have some ingredients leftover since it’s kinda hard to determine just how much cream cheese you’ll need to fill 50 poppers.  AND cream chesse is just so darn good, you can’t let that go to waste!

So, in the midst of my obsession with jalapeno poppers comes the next best thing – I present you Jalapeno Popper Meatloaf!

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Prepare the meatloaf and fill with the jalapenos and cream cheese.  Cover up the holes with some hamburger meat.  Top with leftover jalapenos that do not fit inside.

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**Note – You could just cut up the jalapenos and cream cheese into small pieces and drop into a meatloaf hole if you are in a hurry.  I think I just coined a new term!  Meatloaf hole!!  Yes, I know I am totally weird!

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Lay strips of bacon across the meatloaf and tuck the ends under the edge of the meatloaf.  Bake for 65 minutes at 380 degrees.

P.S. I even use some of the drippings to make gravy if I’m serving it with mashed potatoes.  It gives you a salty smokiness from the bacon and a little bit of jalapeno flavor.  Works for me!!!

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Ingredients:

2 lbs. hamburger meat

1/2 of a medium sized onion, grated or finely chopped

2 finely grated carrots

1 dry onion soup packet (or some onion and garlic powder)

2 eggs

1/2 c. breadcrumbs

8-10 slices of bacon

10 fresh jalapenos

1 box of Philadelphia cream cheese

What to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 380 degrees.
  2. Spray your dish with non-stick spray.
  3. Prepare the jalapenos by cutting longways and removing seeds from the inside.  If you want a spicier meatloaf, leave the white membrane that runs along the wall of the jalapeno.
  4. Fill the inside of the jalapeno with cream cheese.  Do this with all jalapenos.  Then cut into 1/2 inch chunks.  Set aside.
  5. Mix meat, onion, carrots, seasonings, eggs, and breadcrumbs and place them into a pan on top of a few bread slices (if you want to absorb some of the extra grease as it cooks.)   Shape into a loaf.
  6. Make holes like you are about to plant a seed.  Place a piece of the jalapeno/cream cheese inside the hole, and cover up the hole with some hamburger meat.  Do this sporatically all over the meatloaf.
  7.  Any pieces that do not fit inside the meatloaf, pile on the top.
  8. Lay strips of bacon across the meatloaf and tuck the ends under the edge of the meatloaf.
  9.  Bake for 65 minutes at 380 degrees.
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Carrot Green-Roasted Garlic Pesto

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Just recently, I was visiting my mom, going through her garden with my mind racing at all the recipe possibilities.  When she sent me home with some carrots, she said, “Just cut off the greens when you get home.”  Well, I got to thinking….I hate to just throw these away!!!  There has to be something I can do with these.  After looking around on the internet, I found all kinds of things to do with carrot greens….even add-ins for smoothies! 

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Now, I know you’ve seen these at the store!!!  It’s like a two-fer-one deal!  You get the carrots for some sort of side dish, and then you can use the greens for pesto.  Sounds like a winning combo to me!
 
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I made this in my blender because I only just recently got a food processor, so just in case you don’t have a processor, you can give the ol’ blender a whirl.  Just a note about that – Put the olive oil in the bottom of the blender…it just works better that way! 
 
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You don’t have to toast your nuts, but it will be so much better if you do! 
 
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 Don’t forget to stir a few times and scrape down the sides to make sure it is blended evenly. 
 
Ingredients:
 
  • Approx. 1 cup of roughly chopped (rinsed and patted dry) carrotgreens
  • 1/2 c. or so of roughly chopped parsley
  • 1 whole head of roasted garlic (garlic pods removed of course) ****See tip below
  • 1/2 c. toasted walnuts
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 c. Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 c.  grated parmesan cheese (quality works best in this recipe!)

Directions:

Place all ingredients in the blender or food processor.  If using the blender, place the olive oil in the bottom first.  Blend.  If it seems like it’s not blending all the way, stir and then add a little olive oil while the motor is running.  Use or place in the freezer til you need it.

**Tip of roasted garlic – Next time your baking something, just wrap up a whole garlic head and slather with a little olive oil and cook while you’ve already got your oven on.  You can throw it in the freezer til you need it.  Click the link above for roasting directions.

Easy, Non-Rotisserie Rosemary Chicken

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I have a confession to make!  This was not supposed be the main picture for this posting.  I had planned on placing the roasted chicken on a cute platter and snapping a few photos.  Well, this bird had other plans for me.  But, I can’t complain because the end product was definitely worth it.  After cooking the chicken in my crockpot all day, it was so moist and tender that it just fell right off the bones while I was trying to take it out.  Now, I know my photos are not the greatest, most professional looking pictures.  I use an iphone and not some fancy, expensive camera with fancy, expensive software…. but that’s okay with me.  I hope I show that cooking is not rocket science, and anybody can re-create most of what I post in their own homes.  It doesn’t always have to take hours on end to produce something really delicious – like this rosemary chicken.

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My brother has given me the nickname of “Crockpot Queen” and so I guess I’m living up to it by posting two crockpot posts back to back.  Just wait until I get to desserts and oatmeal!  Oatmeal in the crockpot is one of my favs….but that is another posting for another time.  SO….on the the bird.

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A weekend or two ago, I went to see my mother who has a quaint garden in her backyard, and she sent me home with these cute little carrots.  I simply placed them on the bottom of the crockpot, salted the inside of the chicken, seasoned the outside of the chicken and threw in a few sprigs of rosemary on top.  Let it cook on low for 6-8 hours and THAT’S IT!!!   You don’t have to put in the carrots or any other type of veggie, but it helps keep the chicken from sitting in its own juices for too long.  If you work, this could even be done the night before and placed in the refrigerator.  In the morning, all you would have to do is turn it on.  I do want to mention that you could easily skip the rosemary and just do a plain chicken that could easily be shredded for chicken tacos, nachos etc.  Stop buying those grocery store rotisserie chickens and give your crockpot 5 minutes of your time.  (Don’t forget to save the chicken juices for cornbread dressing or chicken and dumplings!)

What you need:

One whole chicken

salt

rosemary

spices of your choice

Carrots or potatoes – cut into large chunks

Directions:

  • Place your chunks of veggies on the bottom of the crockpot
  • Salt the inside of your bird.  Place approximately 1 teaspoon of salt in your hand and rub the inside of your bird all around, then place it on top of your veggies.
  • Season the outside of the chicken.  I chose garlic salt and a little Tony Chachere’s cajun seasoning.  Something with paprika will give it a good color.
  • Throw a couple of rosemary sprigs on top of the chicken.
  • Cook in the crockpot on low for 6-8 hours, depending on how large your chicken is.  **Tip**  I always look at the legs of the chicken.  If the meat has started to shrink up from the bone on the legs, it is ready!

Copycat Macaroni Grill Rosemary Bread

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Being from Texas, I can’t  help but get excited once we have the slightest bit of cool weather.  It makes me want to start cooking every single winter recipe I can get my hands on.  I love taking advantage of not having to worry about turning my oven on for extended periods of time.  I make coffee at all times of the day and start looking around town for different pumpkin and fall flavored drinks/desserts/winter vegetables, etc.

I also like to bring out my collection of soup recipes and get busy in the kitchen.  What’s perfectly paired with a nice bowl of soup?

A nice, hot loaf of homemade bread!!! One of  the best things about this bread, other than taste, is how quickly it can be prepared. Other than the time it takes to rise, this bread can be prepared in about 10-20 minutes.

I was cruising the net looking for a rosemary bread similar to the one they serve at Macaroni Grill and came across a recipe on Allrecipes.com (It’s called Jo’s Rosemary Bread).  The recipe was designed for a bread machine, so I decided to adapt it for those of us without bread makers…plus, I just like getting my hands dirty in the kitchen!  Some of us never grow up!!!  (Like the time I flew a kite at midnight in my pajamas, running up and down the street trying to get it to fly to make sure my high school project got a good grade.  So….maybe this is a topic for another conversation. 🙂   Start by proofing the yeast in water mixed with a little sugar.   Add the olive oil and the rest of the water after 5-10 minutes of proofing.   Chop the rosemary very fine. (A big thanks goes to my mom for this rosemary from her garden!!!  Love ya, Maudy!?)

In a large bowl, mix together flour, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and finely chopped rosemary.

Add the yeast mixture to the dry ingredients and get your hands in there and get messy!!!!

I continue mixing with my hands until them mixture is almost entirely incorporated and the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

From here, I move to a floured surface and continue to knead my bread until it is smooth, approximately 5 minutes or so. If your mixing bowl is fairly clean, oil the inside of the bowl fairly well and place dough in bowl to rise for one hour.

During this time, the bowl should be covered by a towel and left undisturbed in a warm area like the kitchen. After one hour, punch down the down and knead on your floured surfaced for a few minutes. Place dough in a well oiled bread pan to rise for another hour, covered and undisturbed just like the first time.

Note: since I usually make this into a round loaf shape, I often use an  8″x8″ pan to rise and bake in.

And sprinkle with salt.

Bake.

 

UPDATE:  I ran out of bread flour one day and had already started mixing the other ingredients.  SOOOOO, I decided not to waste everything and try making the recipe with all purpose flour.  I worked just fine!!!  I’m actually glad that happened because now I don’t have to buy specific flour to make one of my favorite breads!

 

Ingredients:

1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar
1 cup water water
2 1/2 cups bread flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon dried rosemary
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
3 tablespoons olive oil

Instructions:

Mix yeast, sugar, and warm water in a small bowl.  Let sit for 5- 10 minutes while you prepared the dry ingredients.  Mix flour, salt, rosemary, pepper and italian seasoning.

Add the olive oil to the yeast mix and stir to combine.

Add the yeast mixture to the flour mixture (get your hands messy!) and combine until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

Knead on a lightly floured surface for about 5 minutes.

Place in a well oiled bowl and completely cover with a towel for 1 hour.

Punch the dough down.  Return to the floured surface (making sure to lightly flour it again) and knead for another few minutes.  Place into your oiled baking dish and cover with a towel to rise once again for another hour.

Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with coarse salt, making sure not to puncture the dough because it will deflate.

Bake at 375 until browned, approximately 30 minutes.  Serve with olive oil and fresh cracked pepper or a mixture of a little pesto with olive oil.

Fry Gosht and Family Time

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After spending some time with my family who was visiting for my daughter’s birthday party last week, we definitely spent some time in the kitchen since we love to cook.  Here’s one of the things that we made.  FRY GOSHT!

Before we got to making the fry gosht, we had a lot of family time.

We did a little sight seeing….down my street.  (I’m trying to convince them to move to Austin.)  Hurry up and move already!!!!!  Who can resist this!!!????!!!!

We also did a little swimming.

    and we made some soap.  Good times!  Good times!

Now back to the food!  Fry gosht is a meat and tomatoes type of curry.  The name translates to “fried meat” and is an Indian/Pakistani dish that can be changed up with different types of meat, typically beef, goat, or chicken.  The choice is yours.

Start with 1-2 onions and saute in oil/ghee until translucent.  Add 3-4 Roma tomatoes and cook down until a gravy is forming, adding water as necessary.

Next, add the 1/2 packet of Shan Karahi/fry gosht seasoning, found in the international section of most grocery stores,  and meat.  In my case, I used cut goat that I bought at the same store as the seasoning.  Note:  the more mix you add, the spicier it gets.  1/2 of a packet is definitely spicy enough for my family.  Cook until the meat is fork tender.

This is one of my husband’s favorite curry dishes, and he requests it every time my aunt comes to visit.  Well, now I have first hand knowledge on how to make it for him anytime I want…..except I think it means more when she makes it. 🙂

What you need:

1/4 c. oil or ghee

2 Tbsp. garlic/ginger paste, or 1 Tbsp. finely grated ginger and 1 Tbsp. finely minced garlic

1 onion, cut in large chunks

3-4 Roma tomatoes

1 box of Shan Karahi/fry gosht seasoning

1/2 lbs. meat, cut goat, beef roast or chicken, cut into large chunks

What to do:

In a large pot, saute onions in the oil/ghee on medium heat until they are translucent, approximately 5-10 minutes.  Add tomatoes and the garlic/ginger paste.  Cook until a gravy is starting to form, adding a cup of water if looking dry and continue to simmer.  It should cook until the tomatoes and onion break down, approximately 15-20 minutes.

Add the meat and cook until tender, approximately 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours . **See Tip 1 below**  Add water as necessary to keep a gravy like texture in your pot.  The dish is complete when the meat is fork tender.

**Tip 1:  Depending on the size of the chunks and whether or not your meat contains bones, the cooking time can vary.  Meat cooks faster without bones and with a smaller size meat chunk.   If you buy a tough cut of meat, the cooking time will also be longer.