Tag Archives: weeknight dinner

Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Peppers

Back in August, I told you about a recipe from Peace Love and Low Carb that has become one of our favorites, Pan-Seared Chicken with Balsamic Cream Sauce, Mushrooms and Onions.  It’s a mouthful to say, but worth it!  Tonight, I made another one of PL&LC’s recipes, Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Peppers.  These are so delicious!  I was quite surprised that the peppers were still brightly colored (more so than the picture captured) and that they were still crunchy; I thought they’d be pretty soggy.  So flavorful, so pretty and a big hit in our house.  I highly recommend then!

Grilled Bruschetta Chicken

Here’s another great recipe that my friend, Julia, shared with me – Grilled Bruschetta Chicken from Kraft Foods.  I declared it International Night in our house and made Grilled Bruschetta Chicken, guacamole and fried rice for dinner.  :o)  This chicken dish is easy and fast, a great last minute entree you can throw together in 30 minutes or less.  It’s so easy, that I don’t even follow the recipe measurements; I just eyeball and dump things together, depending on how many I’m cooking for.  So here we go…

You only need 5 ingredients: chicken, sun-dried tomato vinaigrette (or just Italian dressing if that’s what you’ve got), basil, fresh tomato and mozzarella cheese.  First, pour some dressing over the chicken.

While the chicken is marinating, wash and chop a tomato and fresh basil.
Combine chopped tomato, basil, mozzarella cheese and a squirt or two of dressing.

Heat an indoor or outdoor grill and place chicken on grill.  Now, the recipe says to cook the chicken breasts for 6 min on the 1st side and 8 min on the 2nd.  I buy the 10# bag of Perdue Perfect Portions Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts form Costco.  Each piece of chicken is fairly thin and weighs approx. 5 oz.  So I only need to cook them 3-4 minutes a side.

Flip the chicken breasts over, cover with your tomato/basil/cheese/dressing mixture and finish cooking. If you are cooking on an outdoor grill, flip the chicken over onto a piece of foil and then top with your mixture.  The foil will catch any topping from running off the chicken and going down into your grill.

TA-DA!  That’s it!

Leftover Wednesday – Trial & Error Chicken

Saturday through Tuesday we were out of town, visiting my in-laws at their Summer home in the mountains of western North Carolina.  The hubs and I thought we had emptied the fridge of all potentially lethal-foods-if-left-unattended-in-the-fridge before we left, but we were mistaken.  ;o)  We came home to a smelly fridge and it took me a bit to identify the culprits – decaying cilantro and an avocado past its prime.
I awoke this morning with the intent to go mega-grocery shopping since there was not much in the house, but the hubs had other plans.  I am so impressed with the progress this man has made during our 17 years together!  He declared that since tomorrow, Thursday, was our BIG shopping day, we should “make do” with what we had today.  So, after taking B to see the movie, Brave, this afternoon, the hubs and B went off to the range, and I was left to figure out what to make for dinner (popcorn at the theater was lunch).  As you know, I always have chicken breasts on hand and usually chicken wings, pork chops and ground beef.  Before leaving for the range, the hubs said we can do “something” with chicken breasts.
I opened the fridge, stared and tried to receive inspiration.  I saw Brussels sprouts (thank you, Robin D., for correcting me on my reference of this vegetable!) and grape tomatoes, both of which were on the cusp of being thrown out.  Finally, inspiration hit me – Grilled Bruschetta Chicken!  I love this recipe!  It’s one of the recipes my friend, Julia, passed onto me.  Although I did not have Kraft’s Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette Dressing on hand, I had over a pint of grape tomatoes, and I figured I could make something close to that.  I was patting myself on the back for such brilliance (waaaaay too early, it turns out).

 

I looked online for recipes of Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette and decided I could substitute the “sun-dried tomatoes” with oven-roasting the grape tomatoes I had on hand.  @@ (That mean “eye rolling” in type.  You may already know that, but Idid not always know that, so I am sharing in case you did not know that).  Then I looked online for a recipe to slow-roast tomatoes.  I found 2 that I liked.  One called for roasted grape tomatoes (which I had) for 3 hours at 225 degrees and one called for roasting plum tomatoes (which I did not have) at 450 degrees for 25-30 minutes.  Since it was already 4:20pm and I did not have 3 hours to roast said tomatoes, I opted for the higher temp/shorter time recipe.  Unfortunately, I didnot allot for the fact that I had grape tomatoes and the recipe called for plum tomatoes.  So, I cut all the viable grape tomatoes in half, sprayed them with grape seed oil (I am allergic to olive oil), grinded fresh pepper corns over them and sprinkled them with Kosher salt.
Don’ they look nice?!
I put them in an oven set on Convection Roast for 30 minutes and they came out looking like this…
OK.  So my attempt at Grilled Bruschetta Chicken! did not go as planned.  You know what?!  My “vacation” away with the in-laws did not go “as planned” either, but I was not going to be defeated.  By now, it was after 5pm, so I made myself a drink, and knew the hubs would help me figure out dinner when he and B came home from the range.  And he did!  He went out back and snipped some of our fresh herbs:
He snipped Rosemary and Thyme and mixed them with Panko bread crumbs, salt, pepper and I added Parmesan cheese and did the traditional flour, egg wash, seasoned bread crumb mixture into a pan with oil.  And that’s all we had for dinner – chicken.  No Veg.  No starch.  Just chicken.  And it was so wonderful and flavorful that we did not need anything else!  We went/are going to bed as happy campers with full bellies!  Woohoo for Leftover Wednesday!

Leftover Wednesday – The Pioneer Woman’s White Chili

I actually had 2 leftover nights in a row this week, but I am only going to tell you about 1 today and I’ll save the other for later.  We had The Pioneer Woman’s White Chili.  I have wanted to make white chili for a few years now but the hubs discouraged me.  He is not a fan of chili at all.  I don’t blame him.  I never ate it growing up and it looked gross – all that ground beef and beans nobody eats except disguised in chili…  Well, I now make a yummy vegetarian chili that I can not get enough of, but the hubs still doesn’t want me to make it.  You see, his tummy cannot take cooked tomatoes.  And canned tomatoes are the staple for any home manager feeding a family on a budget!  *sigh*  Anywho, his need to stay away from tomatoes was the perfect reason, in my book, to make white chili, but he wasn’t having it.  Probably because we both thought it had to involve ground chicken or turkey which, let’s face it, is usually dry when cooked.
But Ree Drummond came to the rescue and provided me with a fairly simple White Chili recipe that uses pulled chicken meat, not ground.  And that’s not even the best part!  This recipe not only helped me clean out the fridge, but also clean out the pantry.  *insert angels singing, here*

I did not make White Chili with the intention of it being a Leftover Wednesday meal.  It had just been on my mind since watching Ree’s Food Network show over the weekend, on which she made regular chili.  I went looking for a recipe yesterday so I could get the necessary ingredients at our big, bi-weekly grocery shopping trip, which is tomorrow.  As I read through the ingredients list, I went on a hunt through the house to find out what I did and did not have.  Turns out I had it all in the house already and I didn’t even know it!  I don’t even know why I bothered looking, that’s how sure I was that I had nothing but I’m so glad I did.  I found the block of Monterey Jack cheese in the freezer (had no idea it was there!) and half a bag of Great Northern beans sitting on the pantry shelf in the basement along with a can of diced, green chilies.  3/4 of the remaining cilantro in the fridge was melting (if you buy cilantro regularly, you know what I’m talking about) but there was one handful’s worth completely untouched, so I ripped it off and used it.  Sill jalapeños in the fridge from the guacamole-that-never-was Memorial Day weekend and 1 onion and half a head of garlic left.  Chicken stock and chicken is always on hand and don’t ask me why I have Masa.  Don’t even remember why or when I bought it but I’m glad I did!  It was divine intervention that this dish came together this week, I’m tellin’ you!  I do have to say, the thawed chicken breasts sitting in the bowl in the picture, above, don’t look right.  I can identify a couple of body parts that are not fit for mixed company.  Moving along…

The original recipe said it made 8 servings.  I halved it and got 5, 1 cup servings, which was plenty to feed the adults in this house.  And if you are on Weight Watchers, 1 cup of this stuff = 8 points, with 4oz of cheese in the pot, no extra in your bowl.  The 3 of us had 2.5 cups total at dinner and then I froze the rest in a quart-size freezer bag for another night.

Ree’s chili is not as wet as mine and her beans are bigger.  The hubs loved the chili but did comment the beans seemed a little underdone because there was some firmness to them.  There totally was and I know why.  The beans were old.  I believe I bought the bag originally when we tried B on the Feingold Diet 4 years ago.  So, it will get added to the rotation and I will buy new beans!  Let me know if you try this one!

 

**Update – I don’t use dried beans when I make this chili anymore.  I use canned beans that I rinse off in a colander.  Makes this an easy, weeknight dinner!  :o)

Leftover Wednesday – Breakfast Dinner

I know, I know; it’s Saturday.  I’m sorry I was unable to get this post up Wednesday night.  B was preparing to take his brown belt test in Tae Kwon Do today (which he passed) and B and I were finishing up his end of year test because our state requires proof of progress from homeschoolers each Summer.  But I did use up some leftovers to make a great Breakfast-Dinner (that’s what we call it when we have breakfast foods for dinner).

Last Saturday we went to a local farmer’s market and the hubs bought a loaf of cinnamon apple bread because it, “…smells so gooooood!”  By Wednesday, the loaf was still sitting on the counter, unwrapped.  The cinnamon sugar covering the outside of the bread was starting to liquify.  So I sliced it up and made fabulous French toast with it.  I also made my favorite chiffonade (cut into ribbons) of ham luncheon meat that was at it’s use-or-lose date and half an orange I found in the fridge.

Look at the swirling cinnamon in this slice…
…and the chunks of apple in this one!
The bread was so filling, none of us could eat more than 1 slice.  So I cut up the rest of the loaf, wrapped each slice in plastic wrap and then put 3 slices each into 2 freezer bags.  Now the bread won’t go to waste, and I can pull it out the next time I was to make a hearty, filling French toast, regular toast with butter or maybe a bread pudding.  Will have to look into that last suggestion…

%d bloggers like this: