Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Bowl O' Beans

We love beans around here if you haven't figured that out yet. When I need a quick no meat meal I usally put on a crockpot of beans. This is so so healthy for you and so good!! We love to eat our bowl o' beans with avocado, cheese, lime wedges, and pico de gallo(diced tomatoes, jalapenos, and onion). If you need something to fix that is easy and healthy these are for you. Beans are packed with protein and fiber!!! YOu can use any kind of your favorite beans. Our Favorite are Anazazi beans that we get from Dove Creek Colorado but I know most of you can't get those so you can use pinto, black, or whatever. We have tried it with all kinds of beans.

Bowl O' Beans
2-3 cups dry beans-pinto, black, small red,Etc.
1-2 jalapenos chopped
1 onion chopped (medium to small)
1-2 roma tomatoes, chopped if you have them
1 T. minced garlic
Salt to taste
7-8 cups water
cheese, avocados, pico de gallo or salsa, lime wedges

Rinse the beans and place in a crockpot. Add the jalapenos, onion, tomatoes, garlic and water. Put crockpot on high and cook for 4-6 hours until the beans reach your desired tenderness. Add enough salt to taste. Do not put in the salt before you cook the beans or it will take your beans longer to cook. Pour a big ladle full of beans with the juice in a bowl and add any toppings you like and enjoy. We usually serve these with homemade bread as well. So yummy!!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Cinnamon Roll Sugar Cookies

I saw these a few days ago on the Picky Palate and just knew I had to try them out. My kids and I always make sugar cookies for Valentines day so we tried these with some of the dough. Man oh man were they good. My husband even sat and ate three right in a row!! Jenny at Picky Palate thank you for your genius invention. You must try these out. Just so you know I read some comments on her page and someone used store bought sugar cookie dough and they didn't turn out quite right. They said they were flat. So make sure you use a homemade recipe like mine below or your favorite one.

Cinnamon Roll Sugar Cookies
1 cup sugar
1 cup butter, softened
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup sour cream
4 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder

Butter, softened
brown sugar

8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup butter, softened
2-3 cups powdered sugar
2-6 T. of milk to thin the frosting to desired consistency

Cream the sugar and butter together. Add the eggs and mix well. Add the vanilla and sour cream. Add in the flour, salt, baking soda,and baking powder. Chill for 1 hour. (Make sure you chill because it makes it easier to roll out the dough)
After chilling the dough, Take it out and cut it in half. Roll out half of dough into a circle that is about 12x 5 inches. Spread each rolled out circle with 2 T. butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Start rolling from the long end rolling it into a log shape. Using a sharp knife, cut 1/2 to 1 inch pieces of dough Place on a greased or silpat lined baking sheet. They will look like so:

Bake at 350 degrees for 9-11 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes before removing from cookie sheet. They will look like this when done:
For the frosting, cream the butter and cream cheese together until smooth and fluffy. Slowly add the powdered sugar and milk until reach desired consistency. Frost the cookies and then place in refrigerator until ready to serve. These are good room temp. but just as Jenny said at Picky Palate they are way bettter cold. Believe me.
These may seem like they take a lot of time to make but they don't and they are so worthy it!!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Black Bean Empanadas

I found this recipe at the Pepperidge farms website but I adapted it to our liking. These were so yummy and we will definitely be making them again. It made a lot so if you have a small family you may want to half this recipe. There are 4 in ours and we had leftovers but they aren't quite as good the second day unless you reheat them in the oven. We ate this with a side of beans and rice. My kids gobbled these up.

Black Bean Empanadas
1/2 lb of ground pork or beef or turkey(i used beef because that is what I had)
1 small red pepper , chopped (I used tomatoes because I wasn't doing to pay 2 dollars for one pepper at the store)
4 green onions plus half of a yellow or white onion,chopped
2 T. minced garlic
1 jalapeno, chopped
1 T chili powder
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp corriander
1/2 tsp salt
1-8oz can tomato sauce
1-15oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
3 sheets or 1 1/2 pkgs puff pastry sheets(can find these in the frozen section of any grocerystore)Thawed
1 egg
1 T. water

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Beat the egg and water in a small bowl and set aside. In a skillet, cook the pork/turkey/or beef until well browned. Stir in the onions, garlic, Red pepper(or tomato), jalapeno, and black beans and cook until veggies are tender. Stir in the chili powder, cumin, corriander, salt, and tomato sauce. bring to a boil, turn down the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and add in the cheese and the cilantro. Let cool to room temp.

Unfold the pastry sheets on a lightly floured surface . Roll each sheet into a 16 x 12 inch rectangle. Cut into circles with a cookie cutter or with a knife any size you like.( I cut some of mine 3 inches, some 7 inches, and some I just cut into squares and folded them over to make a triangle turnover. Just do whatever is easiest for you. They all taste the same.) Spoon some of the black bean mixture onto each circle or square. Make sure to leave enough space to fold and seal each one. Wet the edges of each circle with a little bit of water, fold over and press with a fork to seal. Place onto a baking sheet, brush tops with the egg wash and bake. Now the original recipe says to bake for 15 minutes but to get mine crispy and brown mine took 20-30 minutes depending on the size so you will have to watch yours and see how long it takes in your oven. Take out of oven let set for 5 minutes then serve with beans, rice, guacomole, limes, salsa, and sour cream.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Smores Bars

Do any of you out there love to camp? Well my family and I do and there is nothing better than making smores while you are camping. These bars are great to have in the winter when you wish it was warm enough to be out camping roasting marshmallows over the fire. These bars are so so yummy plus they are so easy to make. They come together in a matter of minutes. Your kids will go crazy for them.

Smores Bars
1 pouch(1lb 1.5 oz) sugar cookie mix(I use Betty Crocker)
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 1/4 cups melted butter
3 cups milk chocolate chips or if you like lots of chocolate use 2 full packages
1 (10.5 oz) package mini marshmallows

Mix the cookie mix and graham cracker crumbs together in a bowl. Stir in the melted butter. Press dough evenly into a 9x13 inch pan. Bake 20-25 minutes or until starting to turn golden brown. Take out and Sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly over the crust. Let stand for 3-5 minutes till chocolate is melted. Spread evenly over crust. Set the oven on broil. Sprinkle the marshmallows over the chocolate layer. Broil in oven for about 1 minute until the marshmallows are toasted. Remember to watch closely because you don't want to burn them. Cool for 10 minutes then eat. These are best warm and if you have leftovers just heat them up in the microwave for a few seconds to warm.

Look at all that goodness. I could just eat it straight out of the pan!!!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Chicken Tortilla Soup

This soup is so yummy and easy to prepare. If you love soup you are definitely going to want to try this. We make this soup two different ways- with the chicken and hominy and we also make it without the chicken and hominy depending on our mood. It is equally good both ways. This is great for days when you want to make dinner fast.

Chicken Tortilla Soup/Tortilla Soup
2-3 chicken breasts
half and onion
2 tsp minced garlic
1 large can tomato juice
2 tsp chicken bouillon
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp chili powder
1 small can enchilada sauce
1 28-30 oz can hominy(drained)found on Mexican aisle of grocery store
corn tortillas cut in strips or squares fried till crisp like chips
Cook the chicken with the onion and garlic in enough water to cover the chicken Cook until chicken is done and tender. Take the chicken out and shred it. Strain the broth and add it back to the saucepan. Add 1 large can of tomato juice to the chicken broth in pan plus half of the tomato juice can full of water. Add in the shredded chicken, hominy, chicken bouillon, chili powder, garlic powder, and enchilada sauce. Bring to a boil and simmer for one hour. Serve with avocados, cheese, lettuce, lime juice and homemade chips or strips.
If you want to make this meatless, Omit the chicken and hominy, Then just dump the tomato juice in a saucepan with 1 tomato juice can full of water and all the spices mentioned about. And cook and serve the same way.