Friday, May 15, 2015

BBQ Black Bean Quesadilla

Need a quick, easy and satisfying meal?  If you love bbq - you'll love these.  Soft, warm tortillas with a generous filling of gooey cheese, sweet and tangy bbq sauce, a little sharpness from red onion and all with the satisfaction of meatiness . . .without the meat.  Perfect for a quick meal for yourself . . or make a whole bunch and feed them to the family!  Please note, in the photo below - I used a whole wheat tortilla/low carb - the tortilla looks burnt because of it!  Use whatever kind of tortillas you enjoy.  

BBQ Black Bean Quesadilla
Serves 1

1 TB BBQ Sauce
2 8-inch Tortillas
1/3 Cup Black Beans (from a can, rinsed)
1/4 Cup Cheese (cheddar, cojack, mexi-blend . . whatever you like!)
1-2 Tablespoons of Diced Red Onion
Non Stick Vegetable Oil Spray

Spray a large skillet with nonstick spray.  Preheat on stove-top over low heat.    Place 1 tortilla in the skillet.  Brush with the BBQ sauce.  Disburse the black beans on top of the black beans.  Sprinkle the beans with the cheese. Disburse the onion over the cheese.  Top with remaining tortilla.  Let cook over low for 3-5 minutes, or until bottom is browning.  Then, carefully flip the quesadilla over and cook another 3-5 minutes until that side is browned as well.  Transfer to a cutting board and slice it with a pizza cutter or sharp knife.  Serve hot.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Chicken, Black Bean and Avocado Burrito

Sometimes, a girl just needs to eat her avocado . . .and this is a great way to do so.  Every now and then, I just crave them.  Oh so creamy and delicious . . . very underrated fruit!  Here is a quick burrito that comes together easily.  The flavors melt together and is just divine.  

Chicken, Black Bean and Avocado Burrito
Serves 2

1/2 Cup Shredded Chicken
1/2 Cup Black Beans, rinsed
1 Avocado - Diced
3 TB Salsa
1 TB Ranch Dressing
2-3 TB of Red Onion, diced
2 Large Tortillas (8-10 inch size)

In a large, microwave safe bowl, combine all ingredients except for the tortillas.  Gently stir to combine.  Microwave for 1-2 minutes on high, until thoroughly heated through.  Lay out your tortillas on plates.  Divide the mixture between the two tortillas.  Wrap each tortilla up and enjoy!

Optional:  Instead of enjoying right away, heat a skillet with a little non-stick spray in it.  Add the assembled burritos and cook over medium heat until browned on one side, then flip and brown on the second side.  YUMMO!!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Easy Artichoke Salad

We are obsessed with super-duper easy salad and have been making it weekly as a side dish for the past couple months.  Super quick, super easy.  Enjoy!

Easy Artichoke Salad

2 (14 oz) Cans of Artichokes Hearts Quartered 
1 (14 oz) Can Black Olives
1/2 Large Red Onion Sliced
1 Tablespoon Red Wine Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese

Drain the artichokes and olives, place in a large bowl.  I sliced my olives - but that is optional and up to you.  Slice the red onion thinly and add to the bowl.  Next, add the oil and vinegar.  Mix to combine.  Top with Parmesan cheese before serving.  Yum.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Italian Chicken with Roasted Tomatoes, Artichokes and Red Onion

Here is a super simple, easy meal that is delicious.  Great for busy weeknights . . .looks all fancy schmancy, but it's really not.  Easy. Easy. Easy.  And Yummy.

Italian Chicken with Roasted Tomatoes, Artichokes and Red Onion
Serves 4

1 LB of Chicken Breasts or Chicken Tenderloins
2 Pints of Grape Tomatoes
1 Large Red Onion, cut into wedges
1 14 oz Can of Artichokes Hearts Quartered (not marinated and drained)
1/3 Cup Kraft Viva Italian Dressing (Lively & Rustic)
1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning Blend
1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder

Step 1:  Spray a large sheet pan with pan spray.  Set aside.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 2:  Place the chicken pieces in a single layer on the sheet pan.   Add the tomatoes and red onion.  Sprinkle all with the Italian seasoning and garlic powder.  Drizzle all with Kraft dressing.

Step 3:  Place the sheet pan in the oven and let roast for 15 minutes.  

Step 4:  After 15 minutes of baking, remove from the oven and stir the ingredients and flip the chicken.  Add the artichokes.  Return to the oven and bake for another 15 minutes, until chicken is cooked through (juices run clear).

Friday, April 17, 2015

Saucy Bell Pepper Burgers

Have you ever made a recipe and once you ate it, you thought - "mmmmmmmm, can't wait to make that one again?"  That was this recipe.  It is a new twist on hamburger that is seasoned and then cooked and smothered with a sweet bell pepper sauce.  No need for a bun with this burger - you'll be eating it with a fork .  Serve with a salad or roasted potatoes on the side and BAM!  Dinner is served :)

Saucy Bell Pepper Burgers
Serves 4

For the Sauce:
1 and 1/2 Cups Sweet Bell Peppers, Diced (I used a combo of yellow, orange and red - 1 pepper of each color)
1 and 1/3 Cup Water
1 (10 and 1/2-ounce) Can of Beef Consomme
1 Bay Leaf
1 Tablespoon Whole Wheat Flour 
1/3 Cup Water
1 and 1/2 Teaspoons White Vinegar
1 and 1/2 Teaspoons Basil

For the Burgers:
1 lb Lean Ground Beef
1 Teaspoon Chopped Garlic
1/2 Teaspoon Oregano
1 Tablespoon Minced Onion

Step 1:  In a skillet, add the bell peppers and 1 and 1/3 cups water, beef consomme and bay leaf.  Bring to a simmer and continue to simmer, uncovered for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Step 2:  While the peppers are simmering, prepare your burgers.  In a bowl, mix together all the ingredients for the burgers.  Divide into 4 portions and shape into hamburgers.  Cook the hamburgers however you usually do.  I grilled mine.

Step 3:  In a small bowl, combine the flour and remaining 1/3 cup water.  Whisk until smooth.  Remove the bay leaf from the bell pepper sauce and then pour the flour mixture into the pepper mixture and stir to combine.  Add the basil and vinegar, stir to combine and simmer for 1 or 2 minutes - until combined and the sauce has thickened.

Step 4:  To serve, spoon the bell pepper sauce over the hamburgers.  Enjoy!

Friday, April 10, 2015

Oatmeal, Apple and Raisin Muffins

These muffins are moist, slightly sweet and ring in right around 130 calories each.  Gotta love that!  I found the originally recipe here but of course, had to put my own twist on it.  My hubby and I have eaten these all week for breakfast - very delicious.  Finally a muffin that isn't a cupcake!

Oatmeal, Apple & Raisin Muffins
Yield:  18 muffins

2 Cups Buttermilk
1 Cup Oatmeal
2 Eggs
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Medium Apple, Shredded - do not peel
1 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
2/3 Cup Regular White Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
3/4 Teaspoon Salt
2/3 Cup Raisins
1/2 Cup Chopped Nuts (I used almonds)

Step 1:  Preheat the oven to 375 degree Fahrenheit.  Prepare muffin pan(s) by either greasing them really well or lining them with cupcake papers.  Set aside.

Step 2:  In a large bowl, mix together the buttermilk, oatmeal, eggs, brown sugar and shredded apple.  Once combined, add in the remaining ingredients.  Stir until just blended.

Step 3:  Disperse the muffin batter among the prepared pans.  I always use an ice cream scoop to measure out (1 scoop per muffin).  Place in oven and bake 25-30 minutes.  

After completely cooled, store the muffins in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  For a nice treat, when serving - split in half, lightly butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Turkey Broccoli and Cauliflower Hotdish

I walked into the kitchen the other day and there was a frozen turkey residing in my sink.  I looked at my hubby who promptly replied, "I plan to put it on the smoker tomorrow".  Awesome.  Sounds delish . . .. and then it ended up unexpectedly raining.  So, that left me with the task of roasting a turkey - and we at it for the next 3 days.  What's your favorite thing to do with leftover turkey?  Sandwiches?  Soup?  Hotdish?  Pasta?  Chow Mein?  Well, all of those are good suggestions - and here is what we went with on day 3 of leftovers.  I hope you enjoy.

Turkey Broccoli and Cauliflower Hotdish

16 oz (1 lb) of Broccoli - Cauliflower Frozen Vegetable Blend, defrosted
3 Cups Turkey (shredded or cut into small pieces)
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 Small Onion, Diced
8 oz Fresh Sliced Mushrooms 
3 Tablespoons Whole Wheat Flour
1 and 1/2 Cups Low-Sodium Chicken Broth (or Turkey broth if you have it)
2 Tablespoons Dry Sherry
3 Tablespoons Half and Half
1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese
Salt and Pepper
1/4 Cup of Sliced Almonds or Breadcrumbs

Step 1:  Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish.

Step 2:  Pour the vegetables into baking dish, spread out into and even layer.  Distribute the turkey on top of the broccoli and cauliflower.  Set aside.

Step 3:  In a medium skillet, melt the butter over medium heat.  Add the onions and mushrooms and saute until the onions just begin to brown.  Stir in the flour until the onions and mushrooms are well coated.  Pour in the broth and stir to combine.  Bring to a boil and cook for 1 minute.  Next, add the sherry, 1/2 and 1/2, and the cheese.  Stir to combine.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  

Step 4:  Pour the mushroom mixture over the top of the turkey and vegetables.   Sprinkle with either the sliced almonds or breadcrumbs (your choice).  Place in oven uncovered and bake for 30 minutes or until heated thoroughly.