Monday, January 31, 2011

BBQ Chicken Pizza

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It's Super Bowl week! You know what that means...time for Super Bowl food posts!!

If you like BBQ anything, you have to try this pizza. I'll admit I was a little hesitant just because I like traditional tomato sauce on my pizza. Isn't BBQ sauce for things on the grill? Think again! It's spread on as a light layer, so it adds a perfect amount of tang and the onions are a sweet touch and a little crunch. It's completely different than a traditional pizza, but in a good way!

You can switch up what cheeses you use, too. Like maybe consider using blue cheese if you're a blue cheese lover? I mean, that's what they usually serve with BBQ wings right? 

Give it a try! One thing I know for certain is that you will love it! Chris and I ate the whole thing for lunch one day. And we have no shame. It was that good!

Printable Recipe

Makes 1 large, 16 inch pizza

  • Quick and Easy Pizza Dough
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup barbeque sauce
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced thin
  • 1 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup Monterey Jack Cheese, shredded

Make pizza dough as directed. Spray a pizza pan with cooking spray or lightly flour a baking stone. Set aside.

Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Grill until cooked through, flipping halfway through. If cooking in the oven, lightly drizzle olive oil on both sides of the chicken and bake at 375 degrees F for 20-25 minutes or until cooked through. Let sit for 5 minutes and then slice into thin strips.

Stretch out pizza dough on pizza pan or baking stone. Spread the BBQ sauce in a light layer on the dough. Sprinkle with both cheeses. Top with sliced red onion and chicken slices.

Bake at 325 degrees F for 9-13 minutes or until crust begins to brown and cheese is nice and bubbly. Let set for a couple minutes then cut into slices and serve!

Source: SK Original

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Quick and Easy Pizza Dough

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When I want a quick-fix, comforting dish, I know pizza is always a good choice. Especially since topping choices are endless. So no matter what you are in the mood for, you can make a pizza to satisfy those cravings! I make a lot of pizza, so I wanted you all to have this recipe on hand for those posts!

This dough is really simple to make and by the time it rises, you can get all your other ingredients together to have it done in no time. You can also make double or triple the amount and then refrigerate or freeze it until ready to use. Then all you need to do is top with your favorite toppings, cook and enjoy!

Be on the lookout...some really great pizza recipes are coming soon :)

Pre-Rise should about double in size

**Note: This recipe was updated August 2015 with my new favorite pizza dough recipe!!

Printable Recipe

Makes enough dough for 2 large, 10-12" pan
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water (105°F-115°F)
  • 1 package (2 1/4 tsp.) of active dry yeast
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose or bread flour
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. sugar
Place the warm water in the large bowl of a heavy duty stand mixer. Sprinkle the yeast over the warm water and let it sit for 5 minutes until the yeast is dissolved. After 5 minutes stir if the yeast hasn't dissolved completely. The yeast should begin to foam, which indicates that it is still active and alive.

Using the mixing paddle attachment, mix in the flour, salt, sugar, and olive oil on low speed for a minute. Then replace the mixing paddle with the dough hook attachment. Knead the pizza dough on low to medium speed using the dough hook until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.

If you don't have a mixer, you can mix the ingredients together and knead them by hand.

If the dough seems a little too wet, sprinkle it with a little more flour.

Spread a thin layer of olive oil over the inside of a large bowl. Place the pizza dough in the bowl and turn it around so that it gets coated with the oil. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let sit in a warm place (75-85°F) until it doubles in size, at least 1 to 1 1/2 hours. You can let it sit for several hours if you want. The longer rise will improve the flavor of the pizza crust. If you don't have a warm spot in the house you can heat the oven to 150 degrees, and then turn off the oven. Let the oven cool till it is just a little warm, then place the bowl of dough in this warmed oven to rise.

At this point, if you want to make ahead, you can freeze the dough in an airtight container for up to two weeks.

Preheat oven to 475 degrees F. 

Spray a pizza pan lightly with cooking spray. Divide the dough in half and stretch out so it is the same size as the pan. Load with your desired toppings. Brush the crust with butter, if desired, to get a golden brown color.

Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.
Source: Simply Recipes

Friday, January 28, 2011

Chicken Tortilla Soup

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Oh, winter. How I loathe thee. It's so hard to get out from under your warm blankets during these dreadful three months. But one thing I do love about winter is the soup! Oh, the soup. It's so comforting coming in from the cold and warming your insides up with a big, steaming bowl! 

I have to warn you, though...this Chicken Tortilla Soup isn't a quick fix. It takes about two hours, but it is well worth the wait! Especially if you love Mexican food, like Chicken Enchiladas. I adore this stuff! Seriously. I had never had it before, but what could be better than a tortilla in a pot? Not much! Make some this weekend when you're snowed it. It'll help the time pass, I promise!

Have a great weekend!

Printable Recipe


  • 2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup red and/or green bell pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can tomatoes and green chiles
  • 32 oz. low sodium chicken stock
  • 3 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 4 cups hot water
  • 2 cans black beans, drained
  • 3 tbsp. cornmeal
  • 5 corn tortillas, cut into strips
    Garnishes (optional)
  • Sour cream
  • Red onions
  • Guacamole
  • Shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Mix cumin, chili powder, garlic powder and salt in small bowl. Drizzle 1 tbsp. olive oil over both sides of each chicken breast. Sprinkle a small amount of the seasoning mix on both sides of the chicken. Set aside the rest of the spice mix. 

Place chicken breasts on baking sheet. Bake 20-25 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Let cool slightly and then use two forks to shred chicken into small pieces.  Set aside.

Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil over medium-high heat in a large saucepan. Add onions, peppers and garlic. Stir and cook for 1-2 minutes, then add the rest of the spice mix. Add shredded chicken and stir.

Pour in tomatoes with green chiles, chicken stock, hot water and black beans. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes, uncovered.

Mix cornmeal with a small amount of water (just so it is covered). Pour this mixture into the soup and let continue to simmer for an additional 30 minutes. Check seasonings and adjust if needed. 

Turn off heat and let sit 15 minutes before serving.  

Add tortilla strips 5 minutes before serving Garnish with sour cream, red onions, guacamole, grated cheese, etc. Happy slurping!

Source: Pioneer Woman

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Macaroni and Cheese

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Macaroni and cheese. The perfect comfort food. What's not to like? It's creamy, cheesy and decadent! If it's snowing and raining where you are like it is here, this is a great dish to warm up to. It's much better than the boxed stuff! And probably takes the same amount of time to prepare since you can whip up the cheese sauce while the pasta is cooking!

I've tried different combinations over the years...various types of cheese, adding bacon and onions, a little hot sauce for some heat. But I always, always return to the original. It took some testing along the way to figure out what flavor combinations I like the best, and I think I succeeded! I'm not a huge fan of sharp cheddar, which mac and cheese is typically made with, so I opted for mild Cheddar mixed with a Mexican blend cheese, and it is pure heaven! Ground mustard, a very underrated spice, adds a sharp flavor to liven up the dish. Enjoy!!

Printable Recipe


  • 1 lb. elbow macaroni
  • 4 tbsp. butter
  • 4 tbsp. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground mustard
  • 1/2 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 cups whole or 2% milk
  • 1 1/2 cups Mild Cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup Mexican blend cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Spray a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray.

Cook pasta for 6-8 minutes, until al dente.

Meanwhile, melt butter in a large saucepan. Gradually add in flour, whisking constantly. Immediately add salt, ground mustard and black pepper. Stir until well blended, about 1 minute. 

Slowly add milk to butter mixture, stirring constantly. Bring to a boil and let boil for about 2 minutes.  Lower heat and continue to cook over medium-low heat for 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly.

Slowly add in cheese, reserving 1/4 cup for topping, stirring to combine along the way. Keep stirring until cheese is completely melted.

Remove from heat and add cooked macaroni.  Stir until combined.  

Add macaroni and cheese to baking dish.  Top with leftover 1/4 cup cheese. Bake in the oven for 5-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Allow to cool slightly and serve! 

Source: SK Original

Monday, January 24, 2011

Red Lobster Cheddar Biscuits

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Who doesn't love Red Lobster Cheddar Biscuits? They're a little cheddar, a little garlic, a little salt, and perfectly light and fluffy. If you haven't tried them, you're really missing out. I'd honestly just go there for the biscuits and be perfectly content!

I went to a housewarming party this past weekend and the hosts were serving pasta, but asked us to bring a side dish. I immediately thought of these tasty little biscuits since I had been craving them for a while. They made the house smell fantastic!! I was drooling a little while they were baking, and then adding the garlic butter to the top really makes them a showstopper. My friend even said, and these were her exact words:

"These are even better than those biscuits at Red Lobster!"

My heart stopped. Oh, why thank you!! 

And actually, I agree! Give 'em a try yourself and let me know what you think! 

Printable Recipe

Makes approximately 12 biscuits

  • 2 1/2 cups Bisquick baking mix
  • 4 tbsp. cold butter
  • 3/4 cup cold whole milk
  • 1 heaping cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
        For the top:
  • 2 tbsp. butter, melted
  • 1/4 tsp. dried parsley flakes
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • Pinch of Salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Combine Bisquick with cold butter in medium bowl using a pastry cutter or large fork. You don't want to mix too thoroughly. There should still be small chunks of butter in the mixture. Add milk, cheddar cheese, and 1/4 tsp. garlic powder. Mix with hand until combined, but do not over mix.

Drop approximately 1/4 cup portions of the dough onto the ungreased baking sheet using an ice cream scoop.

Bake for 15-17 minutes or until the tops of the biscuits begin to turn light brown.

When you take the biscuits out of the oven, melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a bowl in the microwave.  Add dried parsley, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder and a pinch of salt. Use a brush to spread the garlic butter over top of the biscuits. Use up all of the butter.

Source: ABC

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Chex Party Mix

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I know the NFL playoffs are today and the Super Bowl is coming up, and whether you're a fan of the Jets, Packers, Steelers or uhhh....the Bears?...I'm sure you'll be watching one way or another, regardless of if your favorite team made it all the way or not. Here's a little snack to keep on the end table while the guys are guzzling down beer and you're stealing the remote away in an attempt to not let them change the channel during the Super Bowl commercials (arguably the best part!). 

It's very easy to make and a nice little treat. I've been taking it to work to munch on during the day and it's a great late night snack, too. If you keep in in an airtight container it will keep for a couple weeks! Plus it tastes very similar to the packaged mix!

Oh, and if your team loses, it's light enough so if thrown at the TV in frustration it won't make too much of an impact. 



  • 3 cups Chex cereal (can use Corn, Rice or Wheat)
  • 1/3 cup lightly salted almonds
  • 1/3 cup bite size pretzels
  • 2 tbsp. butter or margarine
  • 3/4 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. seasoned salt, such as Lawry's
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.

In large bowl, mix cereal, almonds and pretzels. Set aside.

In ungreased roasting pan, melt the butter in the oven. Add seasonings and mix well. Gradually stir in the cereal mixture until evenly coated. Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Spread on paper towels to cool. Store in airtight container.

Source: Adapted from Chex

Friday, January 21, 2011

Sesame Noodles

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Please try these. Now. You will thank me later. 

I know a lot of people who regularly buy sesame noodles in the deli section of their local grocery store. Well, I have good news for you: You can now make them at home! And believe it or not, they are even BETTER than the store bought ones! I'm going to need you to trust me on this one. I even have proof:

Exhibit A: When I first made this recipe, it was a Saturday.

Exhibit B: Then I made it again on Sunday.

Exhibit C: Then that Wednesday.

Well, you get the picture...

With only a few simple ingredients, you can have this dish together in no time. I made a few adjustments from the original recipe, which I noted below. You'll notice that there is a lot of extra liquid after you pour it on the noodles...but give it about five minutes. The noodles will soak up all the liquid to make the dish even tastier (if that's even possible). 

Note: The noodles are great right out of the fridge as well. I've brought this dish to a tailgate and a potluck as a cold side dish and it was a huge hit. Enjoy!

Printable Recipe

  • 16 oz. thin spaghetti
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 6 tbsp. pure sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup hot water (use the boiling water from the pasta)
  • 2 green onions, sliced thin (optional)

Cook pasta as directed on package.  Whisk all ingredients together except noodles and onions. Taste and adjust as needed. Pour all ingredients over warm noodles and garnish with green onions.

Source: Adapted from Pioneer Woman

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Lemon Bars

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I was not a big fan of lemons growing up. My mom hardly ever cooked with them, I never ordered a dish that had lemon in it at a restaurant, and I preferred almost any other citrus in place of one. The closest I came to ever consuming lemons was lemonade, but even then I would prefer fruit punch over it. Today, though? That has completely changed. With recipes like chicken piccata, lemon chicken, and lemon pasta, what is there not to like about lemons?!

Hence I give you: Lemon Bars.

These are probably better known to be served in the summer or a nice spring day, but I figured I could use something reminiscent of those days while it is freezing here on the east coast. The lemon juice adds a subtle amount of tartness and the bars are not overly sweet either. Try these and hopefully they'll allow you to escape from this chilly weather for a bite or two!


For the crust:
  • 2 cups flour, sifted
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
For the filling:
  • 4 whole eggs
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Grease a 9x13 inch pan and set aside.

For the crust, mix the softened butter into the flour and powdered sugar with your hands (or a pastry blender) until it clings together.  Press the mixture in the bottom of the greased pan and bake for 20-25 minutes or until lightly golden.
For the filling, beat the eggs with a hand mixer for about 5 minutes until frothy. Stir in the sugar and lemon juice.

In another bowl, sift together flour and baking powder.  Stir into the egg mixture. Pour over the baked, warm crust and bake for an additional 25 minutes.  
Cool and sprinkle with powdered sugar.  Enjoy!

Source: Tasty Kitchen

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Creamy Orzo

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If you're trying to stretch a buck in today's economy, I've got the dish for you! I actually think this might be one of my new personal favorites. The ingredients are so simple, but combining them creates something you'd never expect! It's soooo good. 

This dish is really quick and only uses a few wallet-friendly ingredients. If you've never had orzo, it's a small rice-shaped pasta that is usually prepared similarly to how you would prepare risotto. What's great about it is that it's cooked in chicken broth, so the pasta absorbs this great flavor and adds a whole other level of tastiness to the dish. My only recommendation is to use fresh Parmesan cheese if you can. In can be pre-grated, but make sure it is fresh and not the powdery stuff you find in the pasta aisle of your grocery store. It really adds to the texture of the pasta and makes it extra creamy. Try this tonight! Seriously! 

Printable Recipe

Servings: 4 (1/2 cup each)

  • 1 tbsp. butter
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 1 1/4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1/4 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 tbsp. fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper

Heat butter in saucepan over medium heat. Add orzo and cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in broth and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until liquid is absorbed and orzo is done (about 15 minutes). Remove from heat.

Stir in cheese, basil, salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Source: Adapted from Cooking Light

Monday, January 17, 2011

Baked Chicken Nuggets

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I made these little guys on a lazy Sunday when I wanted a quick, but filling, lunch. I had a package of chicken tenders and all the other ingredients I always have on hand. My mom would use this method to make chicken cutlets while I was growing up, but she would use chicken breasts and fry them instead. This is a healthy alternative since they are baked, and they're great to pull out on a weekday night when you don't feel like cooking after a long day at work. I even sliced them up and put them on top of a salad, so there are many variations you can try. Say adios to those fast food chicken nuggets!!


  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenders, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1 egg, lightly whisked
  • 1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp. dried basil
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Spray baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.

Rinse chicken and cut into 1-inch pieces.  Prepare three bowls for coating. Combine flour, salt and pepper in first bowl. Add egg in second bowl. In third bowl, combine breadcrumbs, basil and Parmesan cheese. Feel free to add extra seasonings to adjust the flavor.

Dredge pieces of chicken in flour and shake off excess. Next, place chicken in the egg bowl and let excess drip off.  Lastly, place in breadcrumb mixture and coat completely.

Place on greased baking sheet and cook 15-20 minutes or until cooked through.

Source: SK Original

Friday, January 14, 2011

Egg Rolls

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I'm sure you're asking, "Why should I make egg rolls when I can order them from my local Chinese restaurant and have them delivered in 15 minutes?" Well, I'll admit they are time consuming, but they aren't that difficult and really are delicious. And when you think about it, this recipe makes about 50 egg rolls for the price that you would pay for 6 at the restaurant. That's a pretty good deal if I do say so myself! Plus, you can freeze all the extras and take them out whenever you have a craving and they'll be ready for you in a couple minutes. I served them with soy sauce, teriyaki sauce and sweet and sour sauce. Enjoy!

Oh...and here are step by step instructions on how to fold the egg rolls:

Place about 2 tbsp. of filling in the center.

Fold the wrapper up half way.

Fold over the right corner.

Fold over the left corner.

Place the cornstarch slurry on the upper corner.

Continue folding the roll upwards and seal the corner with the cornstarch mixture.


For the filling:
  • 1 1/4 pounds ground pork
  • 1 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 14-oz. bag coleslaw mix
  • 1 tbsp. high-heat cooking oil
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tsp. fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 tbsp. Chinese rice wine (can omit)
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Black pepper

  • 50 spring roll/egg roll wrappers, defrosted and unopened at room temperature for 45 minutes or in refrigerator overnight (about 2 packages)

  • Cornstarch slurry: 1 tbsp. cornstarch (or flour) mixed with 1/4 cup of cool water

  • Oil, for frying

Marinate the ground pork with the soy sauce, cornstarch, sugar and sesame oil for at least 10 minutes at room temperature.

Heat a wok or large frying pan over high heat until hot.  Add the cooking oil and swirl to coat.  Mix in the garlic and ginger and fry until fragrant, 15-30 seconds.  Add the pork and stir fry until no longer pink.  Toss in the coleslaw and stir fry for 1 minute, until softened. Add the rice wine (if using), soy sauce, sesame oil, salt and black pepper. Continue to stir fry for another minute. Remove the filling to a baking sheet and spread out to cool. Prop up one end of the baking sheet so that it tilts and will allow all the liquid to drain to the end. Let cool for 15 minutes.

Discard all of the accumulated juices.  Use paper towels to blot the filling to get rid of extra oil or juice. Place 1 tablespoon of filling on one corner of an egg roll wrapper and wrap each egg roll. Seal with a small amount of cornstarch slurry on the end of the wrapper.

Keep the rolled egg rolls in a neat, single layer and cover with plastic wrap to prevent from drying.  If you want to stack the egg rolls, make sure you have a layer of parchment paper in between the layers to prevent them from sticking. Refrigerate up to 4 hours until ready to fry or freeze.

To fry the egg rolls, fill a wok or pot with 2 inches of high-heat cooking oil.  Heat the oil to 350 degrees F or until a cube of bread will fry to golden brown within 10 seconds.  Gently slide in or lower the egg rolls, frying 4-6 at a time, turning occasionally until golden brown, about 1 1/2 minutes.  Place on wire rack to drain and cool. 

To fry frozen egg rolls, do not defrost first.  Just add them to the oil frozen, frying 4-6 at a time.  Add an additional 1 1/2 minutes to the frying time since they are frozen.

Re-heating Egg Rolls: Place in an oven at 375 degrees F for 5-8 minutes.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Chicken Enchiladas

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Mmm what a great little treat on a cold winter evening. These chicken enchiladas are delicious! I had never made enchiladas before, but I love ordering them at Mexican restaurants so I thought I'd give it a try. Luckily these were really easy to make and took little effort!

I used all fat free or reduced fat ingredients, but I couldn't even tell. Just knowing this made them even better since I knew they weren't fattening like the ones you can order out. If you aren't a fan of cream cheese, I promise you can't even tell it's in there. It just makes the filling extra creamy, so no need to worry. The corn is unexpected and adds a little crunch, which is a pleasant surprise. Give these a try! You won't be sorry!


  • 4 oz. cream cheese, softened (I used fat free)
  • 1/4 cup light sour cream
  • 10 oz. enchilada sauce
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided
  • 2 cups cooked, shredded chicken (I used a Rotisserie chicken)
  • 1 cup corn kernels, drained
  • 4 oz. diced green chiles, drained
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 8 8-inch flour tortillas (I used whole wheat)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 inch pan with cooking spray.

In a medium sized bowl, cream together cream cheese, sour cream and 1/2 of the enchilada sauce.  If you don't have a hand mixer, you can hand mix until it is well blended. Stir in 1/2 cup of each type of cheese.

In a second bowl, toss together the chicken, corn, cumin, chili powder, a dash of both salt and pepper, green chiles, and half of the scallions.  Add the chicken mixture to the cheese mixture and combine well.

Spread about half of the remaining enchilada sauce in the bottom of the greased baking dish.

Spoon the filling into each tortilla, roll the tortilla up, and place in the baking dish with the seam down.  Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the top of the filled tortillas and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.  Bake for 20 minutes or until hot and bubbly.  Sprinkle with the remaining scallions and serve.

Source: Adapted from Buns in my Oven

Monday, January 10, 2011

Pico de Gallo and Guacamole

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We all love two for one deals, right? Pico de gallo is a great garnish on tacos or salads and you can even serve it as a dip. Add a little fresh avocado and voila! You've got yourself some homemade guacamole. Much better than the store bought version. Plus it's a lot cheaper and less oily. All you need to do is make sure you buy your avocados a couple days in advance. Those little guys need to have some time to ripen up and get soft. Otherwise you will be left with large chunks of hard avocado, and no one wants that. You can adjust the ingredients to your liking by adding more jalapenos for some heat or more lime juice for a little zing. Just keep tasting as you go. Remember--you can always add ingredients, but you can't take them out. So add small amounts at a time until you reach your desired flavor.

Tip: Guacamole will only stay fresh for up to 24 hours. To prevent oxidation, reserve a pit from one of the avocados and place in the bottom of the guacamole dish. Also, cover with plastic wrap touching the guacamole to prevent air from getting in.

You know these guys are ripe when you can easily remove the tip with your finger and they are soft to the touch.

Make sure all pieces are relatively the same size (minus the jalapenos).

Serves 2-4

  • 3 ripe avocados
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Roma tomatoes, deseeded and chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, deseeded and chopped
  • 2 tbsp. fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 lime, juiced

Cut the avocados in half and scoop out the insides. Place in a mixing bowl. Mash the avocados with a fork, leaving them slightly lumpy. Remember to reserve a pit to place in the bottom of your serving bowl to prevent oxidation.  

Chop onions, tomatoes, jalapenos, and cilantro. Add salt and lime juice. (This will be your Pico de Gallo.)  Add this mixture to the mashed avocados to create guacamole. Taste and adjust accordingly. 

Place reserved pit in the bottom of the bowl with guacamole. Cover with plastic wrap directly touching the guacamole.

Source: SK Original

Friday, January 7, 2011

French Onion Soup

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I think I'm addicted to caramelized onions. Like unhealthily so. I could probably eat them on just about anything, but you won't judge me, right? Luckily one of my favorite winter meals is French Onion Soup where caramelized onions are the glorified center of attention. Yum! What's great about it is you can use just about any type of broth, bread and cheese and it will turn out fantastic no matter what your combination is. I prefer Muenster cheese, but I know it is often served with Provolone, Monterey Jack or Mozzarella. Like all four? Go for it! I won't tell.

My mom used to always make this growing up and eating it always brings me back to my childhood. My brother and I would play outside for hours then come inside to a nice, warm bowl of bubbling soup. Go ahead and make yourself a bowl and enjoy on a cold winter evening!



  • 3 large onions, sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • 2 (10.5 oz.) cans condensed beef broth (can also use vegetable or chicken)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • French bread, sliced and toasted
  • Sliced Provolone cheese (or any type you prefer)

Cook onions in butter over medium heat, stirring occasionally until onions are tender and begin to brown.  Sprinkle with flour and mix immediately. Gradually stir in 1 cup broth. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly.  Stir in remaining broth, water and Worcestershire sauce. Heat to boiling and then reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for 5 minutes.

Place sliced bread in the bottom of a bowl and cover with soup.  Top with your favorite cheese and place under the broiler until melted and bubbly.