Mar 24

Spinach Bake

Posted by Nanc

If you read that title and make a face at ‘spinach’, then go. Leave now. There’s nothing for you here. Good riddance!

Are they gone yet?

Okay, for the rest of you smart ones with good taste and fine manners, let me continue… Spinach Bake is an awesome, healthy, over-the-top tasty casserole that defies the old, Popeye stereotypes of this nutritional delight.

Bonez and I are meat eaters, okay? But we crave Spinach Bake at times. It’s that good. Served with cheesy garlic toast, it’s a no-meat, heavenly meal.

We went to the farmer’s market this past weekend and came home with loads of goodness, including tons of fresh spinach. My heart pounded at the thought of Spinach Bake.

Are you ready to become addicted to a leafy, green, veggie dish?

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Mar 22

If it sounds ridiculously sweet and god-blessedly yummy, that’s because it is. It’s also simple and a crowd pleaser (if you like that kind of thing).

Personally, I’ve always kind of shied away from the sweet or desert dips, happy to keep my appetite focused on cheesy queso, savory spinach, and the classic chip&dip/salsa routine. But I’ve seen the light with this number.

Now don’t go expecting me to get all gushy about a fruit/yogurt dip next. I’ve still got snack time priorities.

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Mar 21

Smooth, chocolaty, creamy goodness in a cookie crust. Pretty yummy, no?

Yet inside this dessert lurks healthy stuff; and trust me, they really shouldn’t know about it. They’ll only make a face.

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Feb 27

Moroccan Chicken

Posted by Nanc

The true title of this recipe is ‘Chicken, Date, and Apricot Tagine’, but that all sounded so complicated and bewildering. And you should try this recipe, not run from it’s name. This chicken is oh-so tasty and tender, the kitchen will smell miraculous, and it’s fun and new. What more could you want from a recipe? [please note the rhetoricalness of that question]

This is definitely one of those recipes where you should gather and prepare all the ingredients before you start cooking. And don’t leave out lemon – it really puts the zing in the dish. I didn’t have ground turmeric, so I subbed with curry powder which had all the spices listed plus some. (I still added the other spices in qtys listed, but I could’ve used only curry powder I’m sure.) My only change that I’d wish on this dish is for the flavors to match the aromas. The chicken was very mild tasting (which isn’t all bad).

Well, go ahead. What are you waiting for? Cook this!

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Feb 26

Good-For-U Greens

Posted by Nanc

When I look for new recipes, it’s usually for entrees or deserts. I tend to glance past the side dishes and salads. And it’s not that I have a large assortment of vegetable and sides that prepare. In fact, usually I’m stuck in the same-old/same-old rut. So I’m trying some sides this time.

I made this first one last night for dinner with steak and it was good. It’s a traditionally Greek dish and that shows in the bright flavors that ‘pop’. It makes 8 servings, which was a little much for just Bonez and I, but tasted great as a filler in my lunch wrap today.

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Feb 13

The Best Chili. Ever.

Posted by Nanc

There are probably tons of claims to that title. Much like there are tons of kinds of chili; Texas (meat), black bean, red bean, Cincinnati-style, white (chicken), etc. The list goes on and on. I like a variety of chili, but White Chicken Chili is THE BEST, hands down.

It’s a dish that nearly everyone in my family makes and enjoys. All of my friends* have tasted it and raved reviews. And to note that it’s low in fat, well that just beats all! Try a bowl for yourself and let me know what you think.

* Okay. So it’s “friends that have come to dinner when I’ve prepared white chicken chili.” Sheesh – do ya’ gotta be so detailed?

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Feb 6

Leftover Lunacy

Posted by Nanc

I’m usually not a huge fan of leftovers. I rarely take the extra portions from restaurants, and if I do I usually throw them away within a few days. Home-cooked leftovers retain their original form (unless they can be made into a burrito of sorts) until I’m tired of reheating my history. Cooking – that I can do, but reanimating a meal into a fantastic new beast? Nope.

So that’s why I was surprised at both myself and the latest two leftover dishes that I’ve made.

Is that beef roast (or stew) leaving you cold? Did the holiday ham overstay it’s welcome? If these meats are still good [read: not green, slimy, or mush], I’ve found a way to make them new and tasty… again.

Feb 6

Ham Broccoli Braid

Posted by Nanc

The remaining bit of leftover ham had been taunting me all week. We had used up portions in all of the normal places, like omletes and fried up in the skillet. But still, there it waited for something – a sign, some movement that I might make. What did it want of me?!

My quest took me to AllRecipes.com to make use of their ‘ingredient search’ feature. From here, I found a quick and easy (and yummy) way to use up that ham. Ha! That’ll show ‘em.

Although the name “explains” this dish, it doesn’t really do a good job of describing it. (Where’s marketing when you need them.) This recipe is simple to do, works up pretty quickly, and looks fabulous, därling! It would be perfect to take to a pot luck luncheon or dinner party. So come on, check it out!

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Feb 6

Shepherd’s Pie

Posted by Nanc

Always thought that Shepherd’s Pie would be too much work, too starchy, bland, or Irish? Well, this might change your mind.

There I was stuck with leftover beef roast (slow cooker) with carrots and onions. (Too bad I didn’t save any of the jus, ’cause it would’ve come in handy.) I know that I didn’t want a plate of roast and veggies again, but I didn’t know what I could do with it and I didn’t want to waste it. Along comes my superhero Google search engine, seeking out sites dedicated to leftover ideas and doling out justice. I stumbled upon a seemingly okay idea of making Shepherd’s Pie from my ignored beef.

And to my surprise, it was good. (Yeah, it made it’s own reincarnation of leftovers, but we worked through it.) From now on, I will plan this second life for my beef roasts.

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Feb 2

These are tasty-good yum-yum. I highly recommend them for most any- and everything. I’m currently eating on the Sundried Tomato Basil variety, but am anxious to taste the Garden Spinach Herb.

I’ve always been a little put-off of the sandwich wraps, especially in the bland flour tortillas. These, however, give that extra bit of boost that was needed to reach tasty-good heights.

In a similar, but failed vein: French’s&reg GourMayo does nothing for me. Perhaps I picked the blandest of the bunch, Sun Dried Tomato, but I got no “zing” of taste excitement. More like, ugh – taste like mayo. I may try the Wasabi Horseradish if they ever come out with a small sampler or single-serving package.

Tip: Don’t use mayo on the wraps, it’s too… blah. A little bit o’ honey mustard is the way to go.