Monday, November 22, 2010


It's getting closer!  Heading out to spend some time with my brother and his wife.  I'm looking forward to seeing some new sights, having some down-time, and just enjoying my family!  Oh, I'm also looking forward to cooking...a lot!  Thought I'd share a poem that my 2nd grader came home with the other day.

   Happy Thanksgiving Friends!

Of all the things I'm thankful for if I could choose just one
To place above all other things when all is said and done,
I'd choose just this: My God is there in joy or yet in pain!
My God is there!  He walks with me.  Yes, even in the rain;
Not only when the roses bloom not only in the spring;
Not only when the world is gold, the sun on everything,
But all the time-God's always there.  He's with me day and night;
I cannot wander from His care; nor leave His precious sight.


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Roasted Hot Turkey Sandwich with Pan Gravy

 I think I'm officially ready for the Holidays to begin!  It almost always happens around this time...about a week before Thanksgiving.   The kids have all of their Thanksgiving parties at the end of the week and then they are out on Friday for one whole week!  Which means...Nashiville here we come!!!  Oh yea, I'm so looking forward to spending some time with family, making some new traditions, and doing a lot of cooking (and eating)! 
I usually love doing a little pre-Thanksgiving meal for the kids (who am I's mostly for me), and sometimes it's a roasted chicken, sometimes it's turkey.  Today I roasted turkey breasts (boneless and skinless) and made the meal into one of my favorites...Hot Turkey Sandwiches.  Of course, I rounded out the meal with all of the typical sides; mashed potatoes, stuffing, and sauteed fresh green beans (I like the skinny ones).
This is the perfect meal to make if your in the mood for those Thanksgiving traditions, but don't want to have too much hassle.  Get ready, it's only a week away!

Roasted Hot Turkey Sandwiches with Pan Gravy {My recipe}

INGREDIENTS: {Makes 4-6 sandwiches}
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 - 4 lbs. turkey breasts {I used boneless, skinless}
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh sage, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • drippings from Turkey
  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 4-5 cups warm chicken stock {or turkey stock}
  • 1 Tbsp. Turkey Base {I used Better than Boullion Turkey Base}
  • salt to taste
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Fresh white country bread to make the sandwich
  Heat oven to 350 degrees.  In a oven-proof skillet, heat butter and olive oil together.  Chop fresh herbs and mix together in a small bowl.  Season turkey breasts generously with sea salt and freshly ground pepper, then rub herbs all over the turkey breasts.  Once skillet is hot, place turkey breasts in pan and brown for 3-5 minutes.  Turn breasts over, cover  the skillet with a lid {or foil} and place skillet in pre-heated oven.  Cook for 1 hour, turn oven off and let turkey sit for 30 minutes.  
Remove turkey from skillet and keep warm in foil.  Place skillet on stove top and heat to medium.  Add 2 Tbsp. butter and melt.  Whisk in flour and let cook for 1 minute.  Whisk turkey base into flour mixture, then slowly whisk in chicken stock.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Let mixture come to a gentle boil, then reduce to low.  Slice turkey breasts and place in the gravy to heat through.  
To serve:  Place a piece of bread on a plate, pile with turkey and cover with as much gravy as you like.  Serve mashed potatoes, stuffing, and vegetable to round out the meal!

Seasoned turkey breasts heating up in the pan

Make sure you get a nice brown color on one side {which makes for good gravy drippings}

Out of the me, it's really tender even without the skin

Oh yea, all of those drippings will make a tasty gravy

I'm no gravy expert, but this was pretty darn good!

 Give the turkey a bath in that golden gravy...helps keep it moist too!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Linguine with Lemon, Garlic and Mushrooms

 I'm really trying to stick some quick and simple dinners into my weekly meals as my time at home has been super minimal.  My kids started tennis a while back, so we've been spending a lot of time out at the courts, which has been really fun!  I love watching them pick up a new sport that they actually look forward to every week!!!  They're love for it is even causing me to want to take it that would be interesting!
Anyway, I made this pasta for me and my husband last week and it seriously took no more than 15 minutes.  I could eat a big bowl of this every week, it was that good!  There aren't many ingredients, so it's a quick dish!  I just made extra pasta and gave my kids a big bowl of their favorite...noodles, butter, and lot's of fresh parmesan cheese.

Linguine with Lemon, Garlic and Mushrooms {adapted from Nigella Lawson}

INGREDIENTS: {serves 4}
  • 1 pkg. white or cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp. sea salt or table salt
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves, chopped
  • 1 pound linguine
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • freshly ground black pepper
Bring a large pot of water to boil, season with salt and cook linguine according to package directions.  (Be sure to save at least 1 cup of pasta water once the linguine has been cooked.)  Slice mushrooms, chop thyme and parsley.  In a large skillet heat olive oil to medium heat.  Add mushrooms and let cook for 5 minutes.  Add the minced garlic, lemon juice and zest, thyme, parsley and salt to the mushrooms.  Cook for another 5 minutes or until mushrooms are soft.  Add cooked linguine to the mushroom mixture and enough pasta water to make the dish come together.  Season with freshly ground black pepper and once served, top with lot's of freshly grated parmesan cheese.  Enjoy!

Just a few simple ingredients

Monday, November 8, 2010

Fresh Cranberry-Lemon Scones

  I've been on a scone baking kick lately.  I just can't get over how easy they are to make!  I made these up a coulee days before hosting a brunch at my house.  I did a quick freeze, then put them in a ziploc freezer bag and pulled them out 2 days later when I was ready to bake them.  I'm learning how to manage my time better when I'm having company over, so I can enjoy more of the day and not be so consumed by the mess I'm making!  These are such a great thing to make right now with the fresh cranberries being in season.  

Fresh Cranberry and Lemon Scones {adapted from Smitten Kitchen}

INGREDIENTS: {makes 12-15 scones}
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. freshly grated lemon zest {from about 2 lemons}
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar plus 3 Tbsp. additional for fresh cranberries
  • 1 Tbsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 stick {6 Tbsp.} cold unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
  • 1 1/4 cups fresh cranberries, coarsely chopped if desired
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.  Using a zester, remove zest from lemons, reserving lemons for the glaze.  In a food processor, pulse flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, salt, butter, and zest until mixture resembles coarse meal and transfer to a large bowl.  {You can also do this by hand, fork, or using a pastry cutter}.  In a small bowl toss together fresh cranberries and 3 Tbsp. sugar and stir into flour mixture.  In another bowl lightly beat egg and yolk and stir in cream.  Add egg mixture to flour mixture and stir until just combined.  
On a well-floured surface with floured hands pat dough int a 1-inch-thick round {about 8 inches in diameter} and with a 2-inch round cutter dipped in flour cut out as many rounds as possible, re-rolling scraps as necessary.  {I chose to cut mine into triangles to make the most of the dough}.  Arrange rounds or triangles about 1 inch apart on baking sheet and bake in middle of oven 15-20 minutes, or until pale golden.  
***If you choose to freeze the scones before baking:  Cut out dough and place on parchment lined baking sheet.  Quickly place in freezer until hardened.  Once hard, place scones in a freezer bag and put in freezer until you're ready to bake.  Bake them right from the freezer, adding 3-5 extra minutes baking time.  

To glaze scones:
Remove scones from oven and place on a wire rack with a baking sheet underneath. 
Whisk Together:  1 Cup powdered sugar, 1-2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice and enough zest to equal about 2 tsp.  **You don't what the glaze to be too thin, so add more powdered sugar if it becomes too thin.  Using a spoon, drizzle glaze over each scone and allow to harden about 5 minutes.  Serve while still warm!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Jalapeno-Cheese Bagel Sandwich

I can't believe how much I've been in the kitchen this week!  The week flew by, but not without some really yummy new recipes and new finds at the grocery store.  I have been dying to share them all, but time has not been my friend this week.
I must admit, I'm not the one to branch out and try new things, when it comes to certain food!  I'm one of those girls who, once I find something good, I will stick with it.  Well, my food experiences have changed for the better because I branched out and tried something new...the jalapeno cheese bagel.  Probably one of the best bagels I have ever had and it came from a grocery store!  I came home with a bag-full and made this sandwich which started my craze.  Last week I tried this sandwich at a new local coffee shop and I instantly knew they had something good going!

Jalapeno-Cheese Bagel Sandwich


  • 1 jalapeno cheese bagel, cut in half and toasted
  • cream cheese
  • thinly sliced deli turkey
  • 1/2 of a avocado, sliced
  • sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1-2 slices of tomato {I didn't have tomato on hand that day}
SUPER SIMPLE!  Toast the bagel, spread a layer of cream cheese on the bottom half of bagel.  Top with Turkey, avocado, tomato, then cheese.  Press down & cut in half.  ENJOY!!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloween Chili

  So, my kids love to dress up!  Not just on Halloween, but ever since they were really little they have always had baskets full of dress-up clothes.  I love that they have such big imaginations and can go from an every-day kid to a fighter pilot or Indiana Jones in the blink of an eye!  Some days my oldest will jump into the kitchen in costume AND in character, expecting me to keep a straight's really hard to do!  
Well, of course chili was on the menu last night.  For some reason, chili and Halloween go hand in hand.  We had some fun food last night, but these little cuties were what made it most fun!

Tyler {ninja}, Jaden {hobo}, Ella {mermaid}, Kai {Giraffe}



  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 lbs. stew meat, lean and cut in large chunks
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeno, diced
  • 4 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 tsp. oregano flakes
  • 1-28oz. can tomato puree
  • 1-15oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 can or bottle dark beer {I used Red Nectar}
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained
Topping suggestions:
  • sour cream
  • cheddar cheese, shredded
  • tortilla chips
  • fresh cilantro, chopped
  Heat olive oil to medium-high heat in a large stock pot.  Place onion in pot and saute until translucent, about 5 minutes.  Add meat chunks and brown for a couple minutes, then add garlic and jalapeno and cook for 5 more minutes.  Pour in beer and cook until slightly reduced; about 5-10 minutes.  Add tomato puree, diced tomato, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, and oregano flakes.  Bring to a boil, then simmer on low,{covered} for 3 hours.  Stir every now and then, breaking up meat chunks as the meat becomes tender.  After the 3 hour cook time, add black and pinto beans.  Continue to simmer for another 30 minutes.  **If meat doesn't appear tender after 3 hours, go ahead and let it simmer longer.
This is the perfect dish to make in the Slow Cooker as well.  After cooking onion, meat, and reducing beer, add everything to slow cooker, turn on low and cook 8-10 hours, or high 4-5 hrs.
Serve with toppings and some fresh corn muffins!  

Oh, I thought I'd include this's how my husband likes his chili!


Related Posts with Thumbnails