Monday, January 23, 2012

Honey Butter Popcorn

So last night I made up a whole pan of this stuff and it was deemed "blogworthy" beings one pan lasted roughly 30 seconds. A healthier version of kettle corn, this has that slightly sweet, slightly salty, with a good crunch taste.
Pure Eire had the recipe posted on their facebook (they supply my milk for my awesome raw milk yogurt recipe) and I made it immediately.
For those who can't have dairy, coconut oil worked perfectly, too! I made it both ways just to test. ;-)
The best part, though, was that I could use our very own home grown "strawberry popcorn". See?
We grew this last year and it is by far the best popcorn I've ever had. It doesn't taste anything like strawberries and it pops up the fluffiest white with a pink center. So pretty! We have loads of fun taking the kernels off cobs. It's actually quite addicting once you get started. One night we had three huge baskets full of dry cobs! Something about sitting around the table telling "corny" jokes... haha..get it?

 I well know that not everyone has home grown popcorn sitting around, but any kind will do. I just wanted to share pictures of our pretty stuff!

Honey Butter Popcorn

About 8 cups popped corn
1/4 cup butter or coconut oil
1/4 cup honey

Dump popped kernels into a 9x13 or cookie sheet. Drizzle with melted honey butter mixture. Sprinkle with salt. Bake on 350 for 7-10 mins or until a crunchy base forms.

That's pretty much it, folks. If course you can up the honey or butter or whatever depending on how you like it. =)

Friday, January 20, 2012

Taco Shells

Hands down our new favorite dinner. I don't know why I haven't made these before!! I should totally have doubled the recipe because there's no way these are going to last very long in the freezer! Maybe a night? If I'm lucky?? 

Taco Stuffed Shells
1 lb beef
1 envelope taco seasoning
1 package cream cheese
1 can diced green chiles
1 box jumbo shell pasta
3 tablespoons butter
Assembly ingredients
taco sauce
shredded cheese

crushed tortilla chips
sour cream

Start by browning beef with the taco seasoning. Drain fat if any. Stir in chiles and cream cheese until well combined. Meanwhile, cook pasta shells according to directions. Drain and toss with butter. Fill shells with beef mixture. At this point, you can layer shells in a freezer safe container separating with foil.

To make:
Pour some salsa into the bottom of your pan. Put shells on salsa and top with some taco sauce. Add shredded cheese. Bake (thawed) on 350 covered for 15 mins, and then uncovered for 10. If frozen, bake 30 mins covered and 15 mins uncovered. Once baked, top with tortilla crumbles, sour cream, etc. 

this photo from pinterest shows the BEST way to fill shells =D Seriously genius!

Ready for the freezer!

Pure. Delicious. 

Hot Beef Subs

I love being able to send meals with Craig to work where he has the ability to warm them there. It makes lunches SO much easier to not have to make something every single night for him to take to work. He tried these out the other day and was very impressed. A switch up from burritos and soups!

Hot Beef Subs

1 sweet onion
1 lb lean beef
3/4 cup ketchup
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 clove garlic
Cheese (I like provolone) 
6 sub buns

Cut onion in rings. Saute in pan until tender. Add beef and brown. Once meat is fully cooked, add ketchup, salt, pepper, and garlic. Mix well. Divide meat evenly between the sub buns. Top with preferred cheese choice. Wrap in foil. Freeze.
To bake...bake in foil on 400 for 30 mins OR take out to thaw the night before and bake on 400 for 15 minutes. 

Super easy recipe to add to the freezer stockpile! Even the kids liked them. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sweet and Sour Kielbasa

Perfect side dish to macaroni, my mom always made this kielbasa when we were kids. I loved it and subsequently, so do my children! Volworths is the absolute BEST kielbasa in the world but unless you're fortunate enough to live in the good 'ole U.P. of Michigan, you won't be able to try it. Make sure you use all beef kind as the other stuff is kind of mangled road kill stuffed in a tube. In my opinion, anyway.... =) appetizing, eh? ;-) 

Sweet and Sour Kielbasa

2 rounds kielbasa
1 jar apricot preserves
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tsp dijon mustard
1/4 tsp ginger

Pan fry (brown) kielbasa on both sides. Drain out grease. lay kielbasa on paper towels to finish draining while you make sauce. In same pan, heat rest of ingredients just until they simmer. Stir kielbasa in. Bubble 5 mins. Serve warm.

Baked Macaroni

When I made this the other day, Aerro boldly proclaimed, " can make this every day for me, ok?" With it being so easy, I might consider once a week =). This was the first time I froze and re-baked macaroni and with this recipe, it worked great! The sauce is pretty soupy before you bake it, but once it's baked (or frozen and baked) it ends up being perfect. Not dry at all. 

Baked Macaroni

1 box whole grain pasta noodles
1/2 c butter
1/2 c flour
5 cups milk (I always use whole)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
4 cups shredded cheddar cheese (I use sharp)
1 cup seasoned bread crumbs

Melt butter in a large saucepan on med-high and add flour whisking until fully combined. Add milk and whisk constantly until it boils. Reduce to medium and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in cheddar, salt, and pepper. While sauce is simmering, boil noodles 1 minute under the recommended "done" time. Drain noodles and stir in cheese sauce. Pour in buttered baking dish. Sprinkle with bread crumbs. Bake on 400 for 10-15 minutes. 
To freeze: pour into buttered foil pan. Allow to reach room temp in fridge. Seal well. I use foil and then a few layers of saran wrap. Freeze. The day you make: take out of freezer in the morning and allow to thaw in fridge. Bake on 400, covered, for 15 minutes. Uncover and let bake until heated through (about 5-10 more minutes)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Crock Pot Chicken Enchilada

The only chicken enchiladas I've ever made are a White Chicken Enchilada but I really wanted to try a red sauce version. I made this recipe today and I loved it! I'm back into making a lot of freezer meals so stay tuned for other varieties =). This recipe was super simple to whip up in the morning and serve by dinner. I'm sure you could just make the sauce part and stir in pre-cooked chicken, but simmering the chicken in the crock all day made a super tender and flavorful chicken that fell apart. I couldn't hardly get it out of the pot to shred it! 
Craig's take on this? "It tastes really authentic.." That's a plus!

Red Sauce Chicken Enchilada

(makes four servings of 7 burritos each) 

1 onion
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
1 tablespoon diced green chiles
1 small can tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp dried pepper flakes
1 tsp salt
1 large (or two small) clove garlic, minced
5 chicken breasts

(tortillas, cheese, and salsa for prep and sour cream, guacamole, etc for toppings)

Blend onion, peppers,and chiles in a food processor. I did it to a pulp because we are anti large-chunks-of-onions around here. Dump into crock pot. Add tomato paste, broth, and spices/seasonings. Stir well. Add chicken breasts. Cook on low all day or until chicken is done all the way through. You could do it on high, too, for quicker cooking, but I just had it simmer all day on low. Once chicken is cooked, shred and stir back into the pot. Fill as photos suggest. Bake on 350 until cheese is melted. 

Aboslutely best served with this Raspberry Ginger Ale from the Northwest Food Hub!  
My favorite~

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Breakfast Muffins

I found this fabulous photo via Pinterest and was instantly inspired. It's no secret that 99% of my pins are food related on that website! What can I say..I like creating edibles. 

I did change it up a little bit by breaking the yokes and seasoning the eggs with salt and pepper. We don't like gelacious yokes around these parts. 

So. Lightly grease your muffin tins. Crack one egg per well. Bake on 350 for 20 minutes for a well done egg. Remove from pan immediately. I sliced each egg in half because they were quite thick. A giant muffin tin would cook these better but I don't have one. 

While eggs are cooking, toast your muffins and prep all your fillings. Around here, the staples are:

Once eggs are done, stack muffins and wrap in foil. Store in fridge or freezer. I put them in the freezer then the night before, into the fridge to thaw. You can microwave them or oven warm them. I prefer the oven as it makes the muffin crispy again.  Reheat on 350 for about 15 minutes, checking after 10 for desired warmth. 

Super easy, super good. Craig has yet another portable breakfast food to add to the fabulous collection in our freezer!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Man Sized Omelet

Craig's favorite "omelet". He calls it a "square meal". So comical, he is! My favorite fillings would be tomato, peppers, onions, bacon, cheese. I'm not a ham or sausage freak. I make these up ahead of time and wrap them in foil and put in the oven on warm. I didn't take a photo once the shredded cheese or salsa was on top, sorry, but that's how we serve omelets over here! For this size omelet, I use 4 eggs, lightly beaten and seasoned with onion, garlic, salt and pepper. 


Best served with some fresh salted coffee and a huge stack of whole wheat pancakes. If you're a man that is. I can't even come close to putting down even half of one of these things!