Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Menu: Nov 22-28

I can't believe it's Tuesday and I am just getting to posting the menu! It's been that crazy around here... we just caught up on dishes from losing our water Sunday Night. Our little area has a tank that provides water to us and sometimes when the person at the water company neglects checking on it, the tank runs out of water. Our house just happens to be the first house that the low water effects. Luckily we had water by yesterday morning.

This week's menu includes Thanksgiving, which in all the hassle of preparation I never did get a chance to take photos of the food! I will still include a few dishes (the dishes I made) in the poll and I'll remake them with pictures if they win... FYI I did not make the turkey, my mom cooked it in an outside roaster.

Here's our menu:

Monday: Chicken Noodle Soup
Tuesday: Spaghetti & Meatballs
Wednesday: Taco Soup

Thursday:  Thanksgiving Meal - We had Turkey, Stuffing, Gravy, Cranberry Sauce, Twice Baked Potatoes, Candied Yams, and Rolls. We had our meal around 3:30 and then for 'dinner' we had pie. This is one of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions in my family! There were 12 total people (including my year and a half old son) and 11 pies. We had: 2 pumpkin, 2 apple, 2 cream cheese cherry, 2 coconut cream, a chocolate peanut butter, and two chocolate pies.

Friday: Leftovers ;)
Saturday: Leftovers ;)
Sunday: Thanksgiving Soup with Corn Pocket Rolls

Vote for which recipe you want to see next Thursday!  Chicken Fried Steak will be posted on Thursday!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Ham, Cheddar and Potato Soup

This is one of our favorite soups, the flavors are delicious and it is a great comfort food! I honestly have made this at least once every year since I discovered it. It reheats wonderfully and is a great way to use left over ham. I have a confession to make... I have actually roasted a ham just so I could have leftover ham to make this soup - it is that good! If I don't purposefully make a ham so I can make this soup, I do make sure as I'm cleaning it up that I chop 2 cups of ham and freeze it so I can make this later. It's just how I roll. 
Warning: Do not make this if you don't want to crave it every year for the rest of your life!

Ham, Cheddar and Potato Soup

2-3 cups water
3 cups red potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
3 Tbsp butter or margarine
1 small onion, finely chopped
3 Tbsp all purpose flour
Red or black pepper to taste
3 cups milk
½ tsp sugar (optional)
2-3 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (I use medium or sharp)
2 cups cubed cooked ham

Place cubed potatoes and water in a large saucepan, bring to a boil.  Cook until potatoes are tender.  Place a bowl to catch water as you drain potatoes, reserve liquid.  Mash 1 cup of cubed potatoes with some of reserve liquid, set aside.
Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat.  Add onion; cook and stir until tender but not brown.  Add flour; season with red and black pepper.  Cook 1 minute. 
Add the rest of the reserved liquid to the saucepan, stirring constantly.  Gradually add the milk.  Add the cubed and mashed potatoes, ham and cheese.  Stir well.  Simmer over low heat 30 minutes, stirring frequently.  Do not boil.

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Monday, November 22, 2010

Menu: Nov 15-21

It was a busy week last week, but even though it was I still managed to make a few good meals ;). Of course there are two days I didn't cook... I hope you all have a great week getting ready (and possibly traveling) for Thanksgiving. Today's post is short and sweet.

Here's our Menu:

Monday: Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole
Tuesday: Chicken Cordon Bleu Pizza (made with left over casserole)
Wednesday: Ham, Baked Potatoes and Cheesy Sourdough bread

Thursday: Ate out
Friday: Chicken Fried Steak, Mashed Sweet Potatoes, Maple Acorn Squash and English Muffins

Saturday: Frozen Pizza
Sunday: Spinach Pesto

Vote for which recipe you want to see next Thursday. (Due to this Thursday being Thanksgiving I'll be posting the recipe from last week [Potato, Ham & Cheddar Soup] on Friday!)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Cheesy Sourdough Bread

 This is a great appetizer to make for any dinner... or for anything really. It doesn't even have to be an appetizer. Just make it. It's delicious. I first had it 5 years ago and absolutely love this delicious cheesy bread. There are not very many ingredients, and the assembly is the trickiest part, but biting into a piece of this bread will make all the stuffing worth it! Now on to the bread.
 Cheesy Sourdough Bread
 First you'll need some sourdough bread. This is a dinner roll, but I normally use a loaf or boule of bread for this. I did get some sourdough bread bowls from Atlanta Bread Co to make these once and it worked great - it is perfect for entertaining couples - each couple got their own to share.
 Cut slices into the bread - do not cut all the way through - leave a bit at the bottom (a half inch for a loaf, but only about a fourth inch for the rolls.)
 Cut slices 1 inch apart in loafs and 1/2 inch in the rolls.
 Then repeat cutting crosswise.
 You'll roll (or loaf) will look like this when done.
 Since we used rolls everybody got their own.
 Next you'll need the cheese - Pepper Jack Cheese
 and Monterey Jack Cheese
 Cut into slices (if using rolls you'll need to cut the slices in half lengthwise again.)
 Stuff the Pepper Jack cheese all the way to the bottom of the slits.
 Be sure to stuff each crevice in the bread.
 It will look like above when all the Pepper Jack is stuffed into the bread.
 Here's another view. You can see how you'll need to cut some of the cheese into squares.
 Next you'll need the Monterey Jack Cheese.
 Stuff the Monterey Jack Cheese into the bread on top of the Pepper Jack.
 Doesn't it just look so delicious? Ok, maybe not, but it looks promising!
 Place the bread onto some foil.
 Bring the sides of the foil up around the bread.
 If you want to you can add 2 tsp melted butter to this - not necessary and I like it better without but if you have dry bread it helps moisten it. My mom likes using the butter so I thought I'd share it.
 Drizzle the butter over the entire roll/loaf.
 If using a loaf you'll need 1/4 to 1/2 cup butter.
 Once you've poured over the butter (or not - depending on how you want to make it),
 Fold the foil over.
 Be sure to secure the foil so butter cannot escape if you used the butter. But enclose the bread in the foil.
 I placed all my rolls in a pan (I usually place loafs on a cookie sheet.)
 You can see the ones on the right have a "b" on them, that's for those who like the butter. Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees or until cheese is melted.
 Serve immediately.
 Enjoy every gooey bite! You can reheat these, but my personal feeling is that they can be a bit to greasy if you use butter in the first place (but I've had an issue with oil since I got pregnant with my son.)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Menu: Nov 8-14

Somehow it does not surprise me that the cheese stuffed sourdough bread won last week's poll. It did surprise me that no one wanted Chicken Pot Pie. Which is why I have you all select what recipe you want me to post so I don't have to figure it out on my own!

This week's menu: 

Monday: Potato, Ham & Cheddar Soup - this is one of our favorites!
Tuesday:  Congregation Dinner

Wednesday: Potato, Ham & Cheddar Soup

Thursday: Caramalized Onion Burgers
Friday: Frozen Pizza
Saturday: Three Bean Chili & Cornbread
Sunday: Navajo Tacos
Vote for which recipe you want to see next Thursday.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Herb Burgers

I've made these burgers a few times before... the funny thing - I always consult a recipe in my cookbook that I've written adjustments in the sidelines of the recipe and taken out ingredients... but yet for some reason every time I make it I turn to the same recipe and use my handwritten changes to make the burgers. I am glad this won because now I'll have the recipe all written out and not have to go to some half changed recipe to remember how I make them. For those of you really interested - I use the Garden Burgers recipe in the BHG 11th edition. You can pull it out if you have it and compare how similar/different this is than theirs... or not. My question is - do any of you look up your changed version of recipes in a cookbook? I'm curious if it's just me or not.
Herb Burgers
 In a bowl combine, 1 lb lean ground beef, 1/4 cup dried bread crumbs (I use Italian Seasoned, but plain would be fine), 1/2 tsp dried basil, 1/2 tsp dried oregano, 1/2 tsp onion powder, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp pepper.
 Also 1 tablespoon Katsup (or barbecue sauce),
 and 1 egg. Mix until combined, form into patties. For a better tutorial on how to make patties, click here.
 Cook over medium to medium-high heat until cooked through.
I serve these over rice with a pan gravy (I added beef broth to the pan I cooked the burgers in and then added some water with dissolved corn starch and a bit of beef bouillon). To add a little more flavor I cooked the rice in beef broth.  You could also serve them as a traditional burger.

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