Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Vidalia Onion Chicken with cracker coating

This was a fantastic recipe! The picture doesn't really do it justice I don't think. It was a recipe that I created after we got home late one night from running errands, going to the gym etc. It was the first time I think I've ever breaded chicken with something. As you can see a few spots got a little darker than others, but overall it was delicious. The crackers gave it a nice crunchy coating while the vidalia dressing gives it a smooth flavor. The green beans on the side were a perfect companion.

Ingredients (everything is approximate. I used what I had available)
Chicken Breasts, I used 4, two for each of us
1 cup of Tastefully Simple's Vidalia Onion dressing
4oz of crushed Cheese It Up crisps (also from Tastefully Simple)
Sprinkling of parmesan cheese

Dip each chicken breast in the vidalia onion dressing, then coat it with the cracker crumbs. Place the chicken on a baking sheet sprayed with PAM. Bake at 400 for about 30minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Right after taking them out of the oven, sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Serve immediately.

No Bake Key Lime Cheesecake

It's not the greatest picture, but the taste will definitely make up for it, I promise. I followed this Tastefully Simple recipe. The cheesecake was light, refreshing and a perfect dessert for a weeknight meal. It took no time at all to prepare, and was a hit with both my Husband and myself. I forsee this one a lot this Summer at potlucks and Birthday Parties!

1 Tastefully Simple Key Lime Cheeseball Mix
8oz softened cream cheese
8oz tub of thawed cool whip
1 prepared graham cracker crust

Combine the cheeseball mix and the cream cheese, make sure to blend it well. Fold in the cool whip. Spoon the mixture into the graham cracker crust. Chill for 2hours. Garnish with the crumbs from pkg 2 of the key lime cheeseball mix. Makes approximately 6 servings.

**If you use a fat free whipped topping, and a fat free cream cheese, the approximate points values for one slice (6 slices per pie) would 5pts. If you use full fat cream cheese and full fat whipped topping the approximate points value is 10pts per slice**

Crockpot Orange Chicken turned ugly...

This wasn't a succesful recipe, as you can see.  Which is very unfortunate because my Husband and I love Chinese food, and I was excited to find a recipe for one of our favorites! I saw it on this blog originally. Doesn't her picture look much, much better than mine? Yikes. I was so sad to let such a tasty entree go to waste! What happened was, we were gone much longer than I thought we would be and so our lovely orange chicken dinner, shriveled up and burnt. So, so sad.

(eww... just think how fun it was to clean this up!)
This one is definitely on our list to make again, we'll just need to make sure we're home in time!

1.5lbs of boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into chunks
1/2 cup flour
olive oil for browning the chicken
1.5 tsps salt
6 ounces orange juice concentrate w/ no pulp, thawed
3 tblsp brown sugar
1 tblsp balsamic vinegar (I omitted because I didn't have any)
3 tblsp ketchup

Use a 4qt slow cooker for best results (this may have been part of my problem too,I was using a large slow cooker). Dredge the chicken in the flour, shake off the excess. When you're done dredging the chicken, throw away the remaining flour, you don't need it for anything else. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and brown the chicken on all sides. Sear it so that it gets a nice coating on each side.

Put the chicken in the slowcooker. In a small mixing bowl, combine the remaining ingredients (salt through ketchup). Taste a little, if you'd like the chicken to be sweeter add a little more brown sugar.Pour the sauce mix all over the chicken and gently coat all pieces.
Cover and cook on low for 6hours, or on high for 3-4hours.
We had the intentions to serve it with white rice, but since we didn't eat rice for us. You could serve it with a brown rice too.
Check out Krista's blog here, she's got some suggestions at the end of her recipe.

Homemade Cream Puffs

I made these for our Valetine's Day dessert. I don't have the recipe right now,it's in my Taste of Home cookbook which is at home. For now, I'll share the delicious pictures with you. They are huge puffs, and next time I make them, I'll make them a lot smaller. This was my first time making any sort of dough recipe and it was a tasty success! I will definitely branch out into making more dough recipes.

Crockpot Baked Potato Soup

I've never had baked potato soup before but after seeing it on Stephanie's blog, it looked like something I'd really like to try. I have to say, I was unimpressed. I am pretty sure my disappointment comes from never having the soup before so I didn't know what to expect. It was definitely an easy recipe, and it surely makes enough for a large crowd. I'll add my suggestions after the recipe.

5lbs of potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 onion, diced (I used Tastefully Simple's Onion Onion Seasoning)
4 cloves of garlic, minced (I used Tastefully Simple's Garlic Garlic Seasoning)
1 tsp seasoned salt (again, I used Tastefully Simple's Seasoned Salt)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp red pepper
2 quarts chicken broth (8 cups)
2 pkgs cream cheese
crumbled bacon, shredded cheese etc for garnish

Make sure to use a large slow cooker. I'm not sure the size of mine, but I used the largest I had. Put the peeled and chopped potatoes in the stoneware of the cooker. Add the seasonings and pour in the broth. Cover and cook on low for 8hours or high for 4hours. When done, the potatoes should be fork tender.

You'll need to blend the potatoes, broth and seasonings all together. You can use your blender or an immersion blender. I used the immersion blender I got for Christmas from my parents. I love it! It was so fun to make, and it made a heck of a lot less mess than it would have it I had to blend it in my blender. (I'm a messy cook. If you can transfer from crock to blender back to crock without mess, go for it!) After that's all blended together, crumble in the cream cheese, cook on high for about 30 minutes or until the cream cheese is completely dissolved.

Dish it up, garnish and enjoy!

My Suggestions/Comments
I didn't realize how thick of a soup it would be. I swore I was forgetting something in the recipe, milk or more chicken broth or something. It was so thick. Almost too thick to even enjoy it. It definitely stuck to your ribs! The night we had it we had a friend's 7yr old Daughter over and she kind of picked at it, but mostly at the (turkey) bacon that was crumbled on top. I wouldn't say it's kid tested or approved.

Since we had 3/4 of a crockpot FULL of leftover soup, I added about a cup of milk to it and that really helped the consistency. I ate it a couple days afterwards for lunches, and then ended up tossing the rest because neither my Husband or I enjoyed enough to keep eating the leftovers.

I think I'll definitely try this again, maybe using more chicken broth and see if that helps, or if it really just needs some milk in it?!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Almond Pound Cake Trifle

Yum! This was so easy, so tasty and very refreshing! I prepared a Tastefully Simple Absolutely Almond Pound Cake, crumbled it up and layered it with fresh strawberries, banana slices and cool whip flavored with Tastefully Simple's Strawberry Chiller drink mix (just the powder).

You can purchase the Almond Pound Cake here. The strawberry chiller mix was a Seasonal item so it is no longer available for purchase. If you're interested in purchasing it and live in the Minneapolis area, email me (address along sidebar) and I can see if another consultant has one available.

This made quite a few servings and would be perfect for an Easter Dinner dessert, or even a picnic treat!

Garnish with some chocolate shavings for extra pizazz!