Sunday, November 27, 2011

Crockpot Costa Vida Chicken

This is one of my favorite crockpot meals. Simply because it is really easy and I can make many different dishes with it. We've had it as a salad, burritos, tacos, over rice... It's delicious no matter how you serve it.

Crockpot Costa Vida Chicken

  • (16 oz.) bottle Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 5 skinless, boneless chicken breast
  • Toppings like cheese, olives, lettuce, salsa

Cook all together in a crock pot on high for 4 hours, shred meat and cook 1 additional hour. Serve in burritos, salads, or however you want.
This recipe makes quite a bit, so it is perfect for freezing and using as another meal.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Pomegranate Salad

My mom made this salad every year for Thanksgiving dinner and Christmas dinner. It was one of the many things that I looked forward to all year. Now that I get to prepare Thanksgiving dinner, you can bet this will be on the table. The pomegranates really throw it into a whole new level of fruit salad. If you are looking for a good salad to serve with Thanksgiving dinner, give this one a try. It's my favorite!
I always double the recipe because I know it goes quick.

Mom's Pomegranate Salad

1 large pomegranate, peeled and seeded
1 can mandarin oranges
1 banana, sliced
1 large apple, chopped
2 cups Heavy Whipping Cream

Peel your pomegranate and get all the little white pieces out. A trick I learned years ago for doing this is to soak the pomegranate seeds (kernels?) in water, and the little white pieces float to the top. You can, then, scoop them right off the top of the water. Now, if your kids are helping or your husband is nearby, you are probably going to want to peel 2 pomegranates. The seeds mysteriously disappear very quickly.
Now add the other chopped fruit. You are welcome to add and subtract whatever fruit fits your fancy, but this is how my mom always made it, so I stick with what I know is good.
Then beat your whipping cream with an electric beater until stiff peaks form. Add 2 -3 TBSP sugar to get it the sweetness you want. Add to the fruit mixture. Mix gently and get ready for an explosion of heaven in your mouth!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Chicken Enchilada Pasta

If you haven't tasted this dish, you are missing out. The recipe has been floating around the internet for quite a long time, and I have made it several times for my family, but each time I forgot to take a picture so I could post the recipe. It's really THAT good!
So I finally remembered the day after we had this and snapped a quick picture of my leftovers that I ate for lunch. You can make this as spicy or mild as you want. I tend to leave it on the mild side for my kids' sake.

Chicken Enchilada Pasta

2-3 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed or shredded
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 medium onion, diced
1 red pepper, diced
4-ounce can diced green chilies
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
2 (10-oz) cans green chili enchilada sauce
2/3 cup red enchilada sauce
1 can large black olives, cut in half
1 cup sour cream
2 cups shredded cheese
16 oz. penne pasta

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the pasta until tender. While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet and add the onion. Cook for 2-3 minutes until onion is translucent. Add the garlic and red pepper and cook for another 2 minutes, until pepper is barely tender. Add the cooked chicken, green chilies, spices, enchilada sauces and olives. Let the sauce simmer for about 8-10 minutes. Add the sour cream and cheese and heat through, until the cheese is melted. Don't let your mixture boil. Pour the sauce over the hot pasta. Garnish with extra sour cream, cheese, diced tomatoes, or crushed tortilla chips.

*Adapted from Mel's Kitchen

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Bars

I thought snickerdoodle and pumpkin might be an odd combination... just odd enough to be really yummy. And I was right. The spices combine to make a perfectly pumpkin fall taste right in your mouth. They made my house smell heavenly while baking also.

Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Bars

1 stick butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cups pumpkin puree
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1 cup white chocolate chips

Spice Mixture
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp All Spice

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
1. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to cream the butter until fluffy. Add sugar and pumpkin and beat well. Mix in egg and vanilla.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Beat flour mixture into liquid mixture a little at a time just until incorporated. Stir in white chocolate chips last.
3. Line a 9x9 inch pan with parchment paper. Mix spices and sugar ingredients in a small bowl for the spiced sugar mixture.
4. Press half of the dough into the pan. Sprinkle half of the spiced sugar mix on top. Add the remaining dough and top with the rest of the sugar and spice mix.
5. Bake at 375 for 25 - 30 minutes. (Mine took about 35 minutes to get done.)

*Adapted from Tasty Kitchen