Saturday, February 27, 2010

Cumin Chicken w/Apples

This is a slightly modified version of a great dish from The Taste of Home Cookbook (see link, left).

  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 medium apples, chopped
  • 2 small onions, halved and sliced
  • 4-8 ounces fresh mushrooms, washed & sliced
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder


  • In a large skillet, brown chicken in butter. Transfer to a greased 13x9" baking dish. In the drippings, saute apples, onions and mushrooms until apples are crisp-tender. Stir in the flour, soup, water, cumin, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. Pour over chicken.
  • Cover and bake at 350° for 1 hour or until a meat thermometer reads 180° 
  • Sprinkle with chili powder. 
  • Serve with whole-grain, brown rice.

Italian Sausage Alfredo

This is a cheap & easy recipe that is sure to please.

  • 1 tube Bob Evans Italian Sausage (this is ground breakfast meat found by the bacon)
  • 1/2 lb. whole wheat spaghetti
  • 1-2 jars Bertolli Alfredo sauce

  1. Start cooking salted water to boil the noodles.
  2. Brown the meat in a large skillet, on medium heat.
  3. When meat is 3/4 way done, add the sauce to skillet and mix well.
  4. Simmer at medium-low heat until noodles are done.
  5. Combine & enjoy!

Caitlin's Rocky Road

My favorite easy treat... you can even keep all of the ingredients in the cupboard for when you need it. People will be happy to take this home in plastic baggies!

  • 1 package of semi sweet chocolate chips, (12 oz./2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1- 14oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 10 oz. of mini marshmallows
  • 3/4 of a jar of lightly salted dry roasted peanuts (12 oz./2 cups)

  1. In a medium saucepan, melt chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk and butter over low heat, stirring constantly until smooth. 
  2. In a separate big bowl, mix marshmallows and peanuts.
  3. When chocolate mixture is melted and smooth, combine with the peanuts and marshmallows until they are thoroughly covered with the chocolate mixture. 
  4. Pour the mixture into the pan into a 9x13 inch pan, lined with wax paper.
  5. Put in the refrigerator for a couple hours, pull out and cut into squares!

Caitlin's Easy Cheese Dip

Great dip that is not too spicy, yet yummy!

  • 1 cup of mayo
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1- 4oz can chopped black olives
  • 1-4oz can chopped green chilies
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 10 dashes Tabasco sauce

  1. Mix all ingredients together and put in a oven safe dish.
  2. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
  3. Serve with tortilla chips.

Hashbrown Casserole

This recipe makes an easy breakfast casserole using things you probably already have around the kitchen... you can prepare in advance and either just wake & bake or freeze it for future! Works as tasty side dish for meal; it pairs especially well with ham!

  • One bag frozen shredded hashbrowns, defrosted
  • One can cream of chicken soup, undiluted
  • A handful of shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3 Tablespoons of sour cream
  • Splash of milk
  • a regular cereal bowl full of diced veggies, (I like to use assorted bell peppers, mushrooms and a white onion)
  • 1 Tablespoon of butter
  • 2 cups of dry cereal or crackers
Set oven to 350-degrees.

Dice the veggies and set them in a bowl.

Then, take  is a good size to aim for, but again - whatever you have should work, although if you use a big one you might have to double the recipe).

Start mixing the ingredients in an 8x8 oven-safe dish.
  1. Add the hashbrowns first.
  2. Add the concentrated Soup, but don't add water.
  3. Add the sour cream.
  4. Stir using a spoon or spatula.
  5. Add the Veggies.
  6. Stir.
  7. It should be a creamy mixture that isn't too runny. If the mixture looks too firm, add a splash of milk. If you aren't sure, don't bother.
  8. Spread the mixture evenly around the dish.
Prepare the Topping.
  1. Put the butter in the cereal bowl you used for the veggies.
  2. Microwave at half-power for 10-seconds, then check. Swirl it around to kinda stir it up. If needed, continue cooking on half-power in 10-second increments until melted. Be careful, butter cooks quickly and will splatter all over your microwave.
  3. When melted, remove from microwave.
  4. Add the cereal directly to the bowl.
  5. Stir with a clean metal spoon until the butter is absorbed into the cereal.
Sprinkle the Topping over the casserole.

Bake for 40 minutes.
Bon appetit!

Italian Layered Zucchini

A delicate layering of sauteed zucchini, onions, mushrooms, local roma tomatoes, fresh Sweet basil from my garden and mozzarella cheese, garnished with Japanese basil.


  • Zucchini - approx. 4 medium
  • Butter/Oil - 2 Tablespoons, to saute the veggies
  • Onion - one small white onion
  • Mushrooms - about 6-8 oz.
  • Basil - handful of fresh Sweet basil leaves
  • Tomato - 3 medium roma tomatoes
  • Cheese: two handfuls of shredded mozzarella
  • Salt & Pepper
Preheat oven to 350-degrees.

Layer 1 - Zucchini & Onions:
  1. Wash the zucchini.
  2. Use a vegtable peeler to remove the peels from the zucchini. You can be sloppy with this, as the skin is tasty and healthy but generally removed for softer texture.
  3. Cut the zucchini into bite-sized pieces.
  4. Cut the onion.
  5. Add the butter/oil to a large frying pan on medium heat.
  6. When it is melted, add the zucchini and onions - careful not to splatter the butter/oil.
  7. Sprinkle with salt.
  8. Saute the veggies.
  9. When they become soft, remove from heat and pour into an ungreased 8x12 cooking pan.
  10. Spread this layer out evenly.
Layer 2 - Mushrooms, Tomatoes and Basil
  1. Very gently wash the mushrooms, tomatoes and basil.
  2. Slice the mushrooms, add to pan, spread out evenly.
  3. Cut the tomato into bite-sized pieces, add to pan, spread out evenly.
  4. Mince the basil and spread it over the veggies.
Layer 3 - Topping
  1. Sprinkle with salt & pepper.
  2. Add one handful of mozzarella cheese.
Put in 350-degree oven.
Cook for about 30-minutes.
Remove from oven.
Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Allow to stand for 10-minutes as it will be very warm.


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Sweet Basil Rub

This works as a great rub for poultry or smear for a pork loin.

  • 1 T. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. granulated garlic
  • 1/4 tsp. granulated onion
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice

Mix together then add these:

  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1 T. whole basil
  • 2 T. extra virgin olive oil

Rub on poultry.