Sunday, March 21, 2010

Lemon Poppy Seed Strawberry "shortcake"

I am always looking for an excuse to eat strawberries and whip cream- what better time than early spring!

Lemon Poppy Seed Cookie

2 1/2 C All- Purpose Flour
1 t Baking powder
1/2 t Salt
1/2 C Butter, softened
2/3 C Sugar
1 egg
2 t Lemon Zest- I like more
2 T Lemon Juice
2 T Poppy Seeds


In a small bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside
Beat butter and sugar until smooth, beat in egg, zest, and juice until fluffy, 1 minute.
Gradually beat in flour mixture on low, just until combined.
Add in poppy seeds, stir to combine.
Divide dough in half. Flatten each into square, wrap in plastic.

Refrigerate 2 hours or overnight. Let stand at room temp for 15 min, before rolling out.
Heat oven to 350.
Bake 8-10 min.
Remove from pan immediately and cool on rack

Do with the strawberries and cream as you wish!!!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Roast Chicken- Crock pot

Similar recipe I use for a beef roast. We love this with chicken for Sunday dinner!

4 chicken breasts
1 pkt lipton onion soup mix
1 can cream of chicken soup (can use Cream of Mushroom instead)
1/4 cup water or chicken broth
1 onion thinly sliced
*potatoes and carrots

Place potatoes and carrots and half sliced onion in bottom of crock pot. Mix together water, soup mix, and Cream soup together. Place chicken breasts on top. Cover with soup mix and other half of onions.
Cook on low 4-6 hours

Highly Recommended Freezer Bag method:Place trimmed chicken breasts in freezer bag. Stir all ing. together except the potatoes and carrots. Add to bag. Lay bag flat to release air. Put in freezer until ready to use. I place the potatoes and carrots on the bottom of crockpot then pour the freezer bag contents on top! You can also shred chicken and serve over rice!

Balsamic Chicken with Sweet Potatoes

Fabulous low-fat crock-pot chicken, and taste amazing. This really brings in the great fall flavors! I found it on Simplify Supper, and changed it to work in the crockpot.

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, halved
1 onion thinly sliced
4 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 inch pieces
2 tablespoon olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tsp dried or fresh rosemarry
1-2 TBS butter

Put sweet potatoes in bottom of greased crock pot. Drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper and a few pats of butter. Now layer most of the sliced onions over poatoes, add a dash of salt and pepper. Drizzle half the balsamic vinegar over potatoes and onions.Salt and pepper both sides of chicken breasts and place in crock pot, ontop of potatoes and onions. Drizzle olive oil, the other half of the basalmic vinegar on top along with a handful of sliced onions and rosemarry. Cook on Low for 4-6 hours. Your home will smell like fall in a few hours!

Crock pot Chicken Cacciatore

We have had this too many times to count. A family favorite, the chicken is SO good, and we love it over pasta. This recipe comes from the Fiber 35 book. It is Super healthy and just plain good! Looks like alot of ingredients, but it really is super easy, and most ingredients you may already have in the pantry!

1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil
1 tsp black pepper
4 chicken breasts, boneless skinless or thighs
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Cups Sliced mushrooms- I often use canned b/c I have it on hand
1 1/2 cups red bell pepper strips
1 1/2 cups green bell pepper strips
1 cup thin sliced onion
1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
1 6 ounce can tomato paste
2 bay leaves
1 Tbsp Basalmic vinegar

Mix first five ingredients. Dredge chicken in these spices, set aside, Put 1 tablepoon olive oil in bottom of Crock Pot. Add muschrooms, peppers, and onion. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, bay leaves, and vinegar. Add spiced chicken and any remaining spice mixture. Cook on Low 7-9 hours. Serve over pasta!

Creamy Peanut Butter Chicken- Crock-pot

This is a fabulous recipe a friend gave me. We just love it! My kids kept asking for more. This is a great recipe for the Freezer Bag method. We love it with fried rice! These are ingredients you probably always have on hand, which makes this recipe great to add to your 3 months supply list!

-Creamy Peanut Butter Chicken
4 chicken breasts
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/3 Cup creamy peanut butter
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
3 Tablespoons orange juice

Add all ing. except chicken and stir, it will take a minute or two for all ing. to incorporate. Pour over chicken in crock-pot. Cook on low 4 hours.6 hours was a little to long in my crock pot, just keep an eye on it. You can keep the chicken breasts whole or shred a bit. It will just fall apart, so we love to eat it in little pieces as it falls apart.

Freezer bag method
Add chicken breasts to Ziploc baggie. In bowl mix all other ingredients together. Pour into Ziploc baggie and seal tight. Freeze. When ready to cook, unthaw bag in refrigerator overnight and pour into crock pot in the morning. Cook on low 4-6 hours.

More Freezer bag cooking!

Spring is approaching and the last thing I want to be doing is slaving over a hot stove every night! Just another reason why I LOVE Freezer Bag Cooking! ITs not just for the crock pot! Here are some of my favorites for the BBQ. Just defrost and throw on your indoor or outdoor grill! Have frozen veggies, potatoes for a potato salad, fruit for a fruit salad on hand and you can have weeks of meals all ready to go!

I take one day out of the month and make about 20 freezer bag meals so my freezer is always full of ready to go dinners!

Here are some of my easy grilling favorites:
Thai Chicken
- Click for great recipe
Italian Chicken- your favorite bottle of Italian dressing
BBQ chicken- Your favorite BBQ chicken
Teryaki Chicken- Add your favorite teryaki sauce to the chicken

Some of my other favorite Freezer Bag Meals:

PB chicken- Delicious! My kids just love it!
Southwest chicken
Cafe Rio Chicken
Roast Chicken
Sweet Pork
Plain Chicken Breasts- I love to fill 3-4 bags with already trimmed and pounded chicken breasts. I label the bag for the dinner I have in mind. My favorites to have chicken ready for are Chicken Caccetori, Coconut Chicken(new revised recipe) and Balsamic chicken and sweet potatoes.

I hope this will help you simplify your life, while continueing to save money and eat heathy home cooked meals! It has really helped me to do this! Buy your chicken on sale! Use this method with your own favorites! Good Luck!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Peanut Butter Muffins

These muffins use wheat flour and they are so delicious! My kids love them! I like to make some in mini muffin tins. Great for snacks and lunches! They freeze great too. They are soft and chewy, and the combo of chocolate and PB is soooo good!

1 Cup PB
1 egg
1/3C white sugar
1/3C brown sugar
1C milk
3/4C wheat flour
3/4C all purpose flour
1 T baking powder
1/4 t salt

1/2 cup chopped chocolate chips

Combine peanut butter, egg, and sugars in mixer with whisk. Slowly add milk while whisking. In small bowl whisk together dry ingredients, then stir into wet ingredients in mixer by hand just until combined- no more. Stir in chocolate chips (giving them a rough chop makes them distribute and taste better throughout) Bake at 350 degrees about 12-13 minutes for mini muffins, 15-17 for regular- dont overcook, they will be lightly browned, and when they cool nice and chewy.