"Wisdom is the principal thing; Therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding". Prov.4:7(NKJV)

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Crockpot Cranberry Sauce

Crockpot Cranberry Sauce

12oz. fresh cranberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 cup cranberry, apple, or cranapple juice

In a small crockpot (under 5 quarts) sprayed with cooking spray put in all the ingredients. Cook on High for 1 hour. Stir and continue cooking another hour. Stir every 15 minutes as the cranberries will soften and pop. Once it is the consistency you want turn off and cool down. Pour into a container and refrigerate over night for the flavors to blend.

Note: This is best made a day or two in advance so that the flavors will have time to sit and blend together. I do a mixture of white and brown sugar to give it an extra flavor boost. Using the juices instead of water enhances the flavor as well.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Chicken Corn Chowder

Chicken Corn Chowder

6 strips of bacon
1 medium onion, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
2 carrots, diced
2-3 chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces
4 medium potatoes, diced
1 15 oz. can cream of chicken soup (can add 2 if you prefer)
1 16oz. bag of frozen corn
2 cups of chicken broth (or water)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 c. warm milk (optional)

Sauté bacon in a skillet until crisp. Drain on paper towels but keep the grease in skillet. Cool bacon off and put in a container to use later. In the same skillet add onions, celery, carrots and cook until soft.  In crockpot add potatoes, chicken breasts, corn, broth, cooked veggies, and seasonings.  Cook on low 6 hours or till potatoes are done. Stir in warm milk the last 30 minutes of cooking. Sprinkle cooked bacon on top of chowder when serving. Serve with a side salad.

Serves 4-6

Monday, December 8, 2014

Crockpot Chili

IMG_20141202_190543  IMG_20141202_191051

Crockpot Chili
2 pounds ground beef, chuck, or venison (or 1 lb. beef and 1 lb. ground turkey)
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. olive oil (if using only ground turkey)
3 cans (15 oz. each) pinto, dark red kidney, or black beans, drained (or a mixture of each)
2 cans (14.5 oz. each) diced tomatoes, undrained (can replace 1 can with crushed tomatoes)
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 jalapeno, chopped (or 1 tsp. red pepper flakes)
2 Tbsp. chili powder 
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. (each) garlic and onion powder
2 tsp. dry oregano
1 tsp. dry Thyme (optional)
2 tsp. paprika
salt and pepper to taste

Brown ground beef with onions and garlic; drain off excess fat. Combine beef and onions with remaining ingredients in a 6 quart slow cooker. Stir to blend. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours.

Note: The jalapeno is spicy. Wear gloves when chopping it to keep your hands from burning. If you don’t like things too spicy just use a can of green chilies or 1/4 tsp. of the red pepper flakes. Serve with corn bread or tortilla chips. Top with some shredded cheese, sour cream, salsa, and cilantro if desired.

This chili is good on its own or used other ways. It tastes great over hot dogs (chili cheese dogs), fries (chili cheese fries), used on top of hot baked potatoes, for making chili potato skins or chili cheese nachos, ect.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Kielbasa Cabbage Soup

Kielbasa Cabbage Soup

4 cups cabbage, chopped
1 1b. Polish Kielbasa sausage, halved and cut into 1/2" pieces (or a pack of lil' smokies)
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
3 large carrots, chopped
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
4-6 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp. olive oil
4 cups chicken broth
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
3 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar (I used balsamic vinegar for more flavor)
1 tsp. caraway seeds (I omit this and use another spice)
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes

In a skillet sauté the onion, carrots, and garlic in oil for 5 minutes or until tender. In a 6 qt. crock pot combine broth and brown sugar. Add in cabbage, sautéed vegetables, potatoes, and sausage. Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and cook on LOW 8 hours or until vegetables are tender. Serves 8-10.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Unstuffed Bell Pepper Casserole

If you like stuffed bell peppers you are sure to love this. Just take your favorite stuffed bell peppers recipe and turn it into a one dish casserole. Here is mine:

IMG_20141104_182151Unstuffed Bell Pepper Casserole

1 lb. ground beef, turkey. or sausage
1 green bell pepper, chopped (I used 1/2 green & 1/2 orange or yellow for a pretty Fall look)
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 cup instant rice or 1 cup cold cooked rice
1/2 cup water (if using instant rice. omit if using cooked rice)
14.5oz. can stewed tomatoes
1/2 bottle of Heinz chili sauce
2 Tbsp. Ketchup
1/2 tsp. Sea Salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 8oz. pkg. shredded cheddar cheese (or Colby/Monterey Jack)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a pot full of boiling water put in the chopped bell peppers. Let them blanch for 5 minutes then remove from water to a strainer. Run cold water over them to stop the cooking. In a skillet brown your meat with the chopped onion until no longer pink.. Drain. In a 2qt. casserole dish sprayed with cooking spray. Put in your meat, onions, and bell peppers. If you are using instant rice now is the time to stir that in with the water. If you are using cold cooked rice just put that in. Add in rest of seasonings and 1/2 of the cheese and stir. Cover with foil and cook for 30-40 minutes. Uncover, stir, then sprinkle the rest of cheese on top. Pop back in the oven for 10 minutes or until cheese is melted. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.
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