Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Easy Leftover Quesadillas

Okay, I'm not sure why this was such a revelation, but EVERYONE in my house ate this (and you don't know how rare that is!) I turned a simple dinner of cheese quesadillas into something easy and fabulous and used up some leftovers in the process!

* Corn or Flour Tortillas
* Shredded Cheese (your choice)
* Leftover Meat (we used potroast)
* Onions - chopped
* Cilantro - chopped (optional)

Chop up meat, onions and cilantro into bite-size pieces and heat in a pan until heated through. We added a bit of olive oil to brown the leftover potroast.

I sprayed a bit of olive oil on one side of the tortilla and laid it on a clean skillet. I topped it with cheese and the meat/onion/cilantro mixture. Crisp up both sides, cut into quarters. That's it! Seriously!  If you had leftover veggies or beans, you could throw those in, too.  Go ahead, clean out the fridge!

The four of us snarfed down 15 quesadillas (so that's 30 torillas, holy moly)! It was a huge hit and helped clean out my fridge. Yumm! Super easy, it only took about 20 minutes start to finish.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Tissue Paper Pom Pom Flower

I was feeling a bit festive and thought about sprucing up my new office with a little pop of "spring" during this gloomy fall day.  So I decided to make a little paper pom pom flower.  I've seen them around and figured it couldn't be all that difficult to creat them.
I found a great tutorial online at Martha Stewart.  I can say that you need to be slightly methodical and attentive when folding the tissue paper, but my little flower turned out really sweet!  My hubby even noticed and thought from across the room that it was real.  I guess I did better than I thought.  I only had some pale lavender tissue paper around, so that is what I used.  But I can see a giant bouquet in yellows and pinks and white!  It would be marvelous.  As you know I'm every-so-slightly obsessed with vintage milk glass, so I popped it in one of my little white vases and voila...spring in the fall.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Cheesy Broccoli & Zucchini Soup

I was trying to get the veggie drawer under control and realized we had quite a bit of zucchini and broccoli in there, so thus the soup.  It's turned out to be quite easy.  Hardest part is chopping veggies.

* 2 Zucchini - chopped into bite size pieces
* 2 heads of broccoli -  - chopped into bite size pieces
* 2 medium onions (or one large...whatever you have) - chopped into bite size pieces
* 5 cloves of garlic, minced (we like garlic, you can use less)
* 2 Tbs. Butter
* 3 Tbs. Flour
* 64 ounces beef broth (or chicken broth) - it was two boxes
* 2 cups cheddar cheese

In a large soup pot melt butter.  Add garlic, onion and zucchini.  While that is coooking, chop up broccoli.  Add flour to garlic/onion/zucchini mix and stir well.  Add broccoli and broth.  Bring to a low simmer until broccoli is cooked, about 30 minutes.

When everything is soft, you can either just stir in the cheese and serve, or you can use an immersion blender in the soup (before you add the cheese) to make a smoother soup.

Enjoy all those yummy veggies!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Coconut Cinnamon Granola

Yumm!  Hubby and I are die hard granola fans.  We looooove this recipe.  It's crazy easy, quick and delicious.

1/2 cup oil (I used coconut oil)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup honey
1 cup shredded coconut (I used large shred, unsweetened)
1 Tbs. Vanilla
Cinnamon - I used about 2 Tbs, but we LOVE cinnamon, so you can use less
Pinch of salt
7 cups oats (NOT quick cooking)

I started this in the evening.  In a large pot, heat oil, brown sugar and honey until it's all melted together.  Turn off heat, stir in vanilla, coconut and cinmamon.  Stir in oats until everything is all coated.  Pour in a 9x13 pan and bake in a 375 degree oven for 10 minutes - do NOT open until morning.  Turn the oven off and then in the morning you have a delicious breakfast!  I use a butter knife in the morning to "break" this apart.

This filled three large mason jars.  DELICIOUS!!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Black Bean & Sausage Soup

I am still feeling tired and gunky from my eye surgery last Thursday, so meal planning and grocery shopping have not been on my list for nearly a week.  I scrounged around and threw together what turned out to be an incredibly easy, convenient and delicious soup.  Even hubby liked it (and he is PICKY).  Next time I will probably add another can of black beans or extra flour to make this soup thicker like a stew.

  • 2 Tbs. Oil
  • 1 pound ground sausage (we used Jimmy Dean Reduced Fat)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 8 cloves pressed garlic (we LIKE can use less)
  • 4 Tbs. flour
  • 2 cans seasoned black beans (we used Bush’s)
  • 32 ounces beef broth
  • Sour cream (optional garnish)
  • Shredded cheese (optional garnish)
Sauté sausage in oil until browned. Honestly, mine was frozen, so I defrosted it in the microwave.  Add onion, garlic and flour to the browned sausage. Stir until well mixed. Add cans of beans and broth, stir. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until everything is cooked through...about an hour.
Serve with sour cream and shredded cheese.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Bratwurst & Beer Stew

My German roots were showing!  We had some Bratwurst that needed to be used up, so I threw together this great hearty stew...perfect for the dreary day we had.

* 3 lbs. of bratwurst
* 2 large onions, chopped
* 5 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
* Two large carrots, chopped
* Bottle of beer (I used a 22 ounce Fat Tire)
* 32 ounces beef broth
* 5 cans white kidney beans (canellini beans) - drained and rinsed
* Three fresh bay leaves or 1 dry bay leaf
* 1 Tbs. dried thyme or 2 Tbs. fresh thyme leaves
* Salt & Pepper to taste

You can use either a crockpot or a stew pot, whichever makes you smile. *Ü*

Brown bratwurst in a pan on medium heat.  When bratwurst is browned, cut it into bite-size pieces.  Add bratwurst to stew pot or crockpot.  Add onions, garlic, thyme, carrots and a few good "glugs" of beer to the pan you browned the bratwurst in.  Cook until garlic and onion are tender (about 5 minutes), stirring frequently.  While the garlic and onion are cooking, you can drain and wash the cans of beans.  Add the flour to the garlic/onion mixture and stir well.  Add the beans, and garlic/onion/beer mixture to the pot with the rest of the beer and the beef broth.  Add the bay leaves.

Cook on the stove at a simmer for about an hour - until the beans are tender.  The crock pot takes about 5 hours on high or 8 hours on low.  Just be sure to check the beans to be sure they are tender before serving.  Add salt & pepper to taste.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Vegetable Beef Stew

We had a lovely veggie beef stew for dinner last night. It was thick and rich and meaty...loved it!

2 pounds stew meat
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 stick celery, chopped
3 zucchini, sliced
6 potatoes, washed, chopped
Handful of baby carrots (or a couple of peeled, diced carrots)
4 Bay Leaves
1 large box of beef broth
1 cup flour
1 tsp. Granulated garlic
1 tsp. Granulated onion
Couple of Tablespoons of Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste

Put flour, granulated garlic and granulated onion in a Ziploc bag. Coat stew meat in flour and brown in a large saucepan in a little bit of olive oil. Don’t put too many pieces in the pan. It should be a single layer of meat. Brown the meat with the chopped onions and minced garlic.
Spray large casserole dish with cooking spray. Put the potatoes on the bottom and then add the meat, onions, garlic, celery, carrots, & squash. Sprinkle a bit of salt over it and add the beef broth. Pour beef broth in the casserole dish until it is about ¼ full. Stir a little bit. Put bay leaves in and COVER. Bake at 350 for about an hour or until the meat is tender and the veggies are cooked. Be sure to check the broth every once in awhile. Add more if necessary. Delicious!! Enjoy...