“Twice Baked” Cauliflower

Make this, make this now! I never thought I would say, “This cauliflower is amazing,” and I definitely, definitely never thought I would hear my husband say the same thing. But really, this cauliflower was divine and you should absolutely incorporate it into one of your menus. We paired this with a delicious steak from my father-in-law’s farm and a fresh wedge salad.

Heads up, this is not really “twice baked,” but it sure tastes like a twice baked potato, and fortunately has much fewer carbs!

Ingredients:

  • About 10 oz of frozen cauliflower or 1 head of fresh cauliflower
  • 5-6 slices of bacon, extra crispy
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 4 oz low fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 C low fat sour cream
  • 1/4 C sliced green onions
  • 1/4 C Parmesan cheese
  • 1 C low fat cheddar cheese

First, cook your cauliflower. I used frozen cauliflower, so to cook it I placed it in a large bowl with about 2 tablespoons of water and microwaved it for about 8 minutes. Then drain in colander, and begin to mash to your likeness. I like it with a few extra chunks.

Second, combine cauliflower in large bowl with all other ingredients, making sure the cream cheese and sour cream are well incorporated. Then transfer to glass baking dish, cover, and cook for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Image

Dig into the goodness and enjoy!

 

World’s Cutest Hashbrowns

So I know “cute” is not normally an adjective used to describe one’s hashbrowns, but come on…these are just adorable. And the best part is, they’re a cinch to make and naturally GF!

This recipe makes quite a bit for two people, but the cups freeze really well and can be eaten again on a later date. Anyone who loves hashbrowns will absolutely love the crispiness these get on the outside and the delicious softness of the potatoes on the inside. Such wonderful potato goodness all in one cute little cup!

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag of Simply Potatoes shredded hashbrowns
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/3 C chopped green onions
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 C grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, lightly toss with fork. Spray muffin tin with cooking spray, then distribute hashbrowns evenly. They will shrink just a tad as they cook, so it’s okay to fill up each cup.

Image

Cook for 60 minutes, then let cool for about 5 minutes before serving.

Image

Marvel at the cuteness and enjoy!

Mushroom Asiago Chicken and Risotto

Ever have one of those meals that you just can’t wait to make? Well, this happens to be mine. It’s one of my absolute favorite meals to make (and eat!) and turns out wonderfully every time. I mean you just can’t go wrong when white wine is in the recipe…and thyme..and garlic.

You could definitely interchange the risotto for some GF pasta, but honestly I think the risotto absorbs the sauce better and fits better with the chicken.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb thin cut chicken breast
  • 8 oz mushrooms
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 C GF flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 1 1/2 C white wine
  • 1/2 C light cream
  • 3 sprigs of fresh Thyme
  • 1/2 C Asiago cheese
  • 1 C dry risotto
  • 3 C water

Start by cutting each chicken breast in half. Then combine flour, salt, and pepper in large bowl. Dredge chicken in bowl and coat with flour. Heat butter and 1 Tbs olive oil in large skillet. Cook chicken in skillet for 5 minutes/side or until each side is nice and golden brown. Remove and set on plate (I like to set them on a paper towel to absorb some of the oil).

Image

Image

When chicken is on plate, add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, and cook mushrooms and garlic until mushrooms are slightly brown.

Image

Slowly add white wine to deglaze, then add chicken back to skillet. Added bonus: your house will smell amazing now.

Image

Bring to boil, then cover and reduce heat and cook for about 15-20 minutes.

It’s at this point that you’ll want to start your risotto. Add risotto to a medium-sized skillet and toast for about 1 minute. Add 1 cup of water at a time, adding the 2nd and 3rd cups after each previous cup has been absorbed.

Back to the chicken, when 15-20 minutes is up, remove chicken again. Add cream to skillet and cook until heated through. Stir in Asiago cheese and bring to a boil. Cook until sauce is reduced by half, then stir in risotto. Add chicken back to skillet and cover with sauce.

Image

Now eat this deliciousness and enjoy!

Image

Broccoli and Cheese Risotto

As mentioned in this post, here is my recipe for this yummy risotto…though what risotto isn’t yummy? To be quite honest this idea came to me because I was out of olive oil, which I had planned to use to roast my broccoli. So, I had to somehow incorporate broccoli into the meal sans olive oil and lo, there was my risotto! Sprinkle with a little cheese and this side dish became a quick and easy version of our Thanksgiving favorite (broccoli casserole) and an instant hit!

Ingredients:

  • 1 C dry risotto
  • 3 C chicken broth
  • 10 oz broccoli (I use the organic bag found in the produce section)
  • 3/4 C shredded cheddar
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

First, cook your risotto. Toast the dry risotto in skillet over medium heat, then add chicken broth 1 cup at a time. Incorporate each cup after previous cup has been absorbed. Once risotto is cooked, steam broccoli in bag for about 2 minutes, then stir into skillet. Sprinkle in seasonings, then top with cheese and combine. Add salt and pepper if needed.

Image

And that’s it! Add this quick and easy side dish to your regular rotation and your family will thank you! Enjoy!

Lazy Day Chicken

This chicken has no fancy name because it is truly chicken for the lazy. And today I was among the lazy. Take 4 ingredients and 2 minutes, and about 30 minutes later you have yourself some fabulous flavorful chicken breasts. This chicken goes well with your basic side dishes (I paired it with a broccoli risotto tonight, recipe coming soon!), but it would also be good shredded and incorporated into pasta or even chicken salad. Keep these ingredients on hand for those days when you’re in the lazy club!

Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken breasts
  • 1 packet of Italian dressing seasoning (Good Seasons brand is GF)
  • 1/4 C grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tsp garlic powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, spray 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray. Combine Italian dressing seasoning, parmesan, and garlic powder in large bowl. Dredge chicken in water, then in bowl with seasonings to coat.

Image

Lay each breast in baking dish and bake for 25-30  minutes until done.

Image

And that’s it, folks! I love having this recipe in my back pocket for those days when I need something easy, quick, and GF to make! Enjoy!

Light & Creamy GF Fettuccini

If you haven’t noticed by now, I love pasta. Especially creamy pasta…with caramelized onions and mushrooms. I mean I could eat this meal every day that ends in Y.  I do not so much love the calories though. This dish is nice and creamy, but saves on the calories by using light cream and low-fat almond milk. But have no fear, this pasta is absolutely delicious and just as creamy as the full-fat version.

Ingredients:

  • 3 small-medium onions, sliced
  • 8 oz mushrooms
  • 2-3 C spinach
  • 1 lb Italian sausage (or your choice of meat or no meat)
  • 8 oz GF Fettuccini (or GF pasta of your choice)
  • 2/3 C light cream
  • 1/3 C almond milk (or low fat dairy milk)
  • 1 C Parmesan cheese

First, caramelize onions in olive oil, then stir in mushrooms and spinach. Add salt and pepper to taste.

While onions and mushrooms are cooking, cook sausage until browned and cooked through. Drain off fat, then add to skillet with onions/mushrooms/spinach.

SONY DSC

Cook pasta according to package directions.

While pasta is cooking, stir cream, milk, and cheese into veggie/sausage skillet. Let simmer for about 5 minutes. When pasta is cooked through, drain and combine with creamy veggie/sausage mixture.

Serve as is or with additional Parmesan on top. Then pour yourself a glass of vino and enjoy this delightful dish!

Chocolate Chip Cocada

When I can swing it, my Saturday mornings usually consist of breakfast, a cup of coffee, and The Food Network. Mainly the Pioneer Woman and whatever show is to follow. Yesterday’s following show happened to be the newer show, The Kitchen, which I must admit I haven’t been a huge fan of…until yesterday when they featured several delicious and simple to make deserts. Now they’re speaking my language.

Marcela Valladolid in particular made a lovely little coconut dessert that only had 2 ingredients AND was GF, so naturally I had to make it as soon as possible.

This dessert is known as Cocada in Latin America. It’s known as heaven in my house.

Ingredients:

  • 14 oz sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 C sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 C milk chocolate chips

Now pay attention because this is where it gets tricky. Pour coconut into bowl. Pour sweetened condensed milk on top. Stir to combine, then stir in chocolate chips. Pour mixture into greased 9×13 baking dish, and bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.

Image

Let cool and then cut into squares.

Image

Warning: these are highly addictive! Eat safe and enjoy!

Original recipe link: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/marcela-valladolid/cocada-easy-coconut-bark.html

Meet Molly and Sophie…my sous chefs. They’re not so helpful but their cuteness makes up for it.

ImageImage

 

Crockpot Taco Soup

Nothing says springtime like a pot of soup, right? No, I’m well aware this is not soup season, but sometimes you just need the comfort only a bowl of soup can give, amen?

Soup can be somewhat tricky to make GF, but certainly not impossible. I usually make substitutions for flour or “cream of” soups, hoping the soup will be thick enough in the end.

With that being said, I rejoiced in finding this recipe for taco soup that was already GF. No substitutions needed! This can also be easily made in the crockpot the night before, refrigerate, and plug in in the morning. Note on the taco seasoning: Be careful which brand you choose (if you don’t make your own). I use McCormick’s. 

I served ours with a few corn chips in the bottom of the bowl and with a little cheese and green onion on top. So, so good!

Image

Link to taco soup recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/taco-soup-recipe.html

 

Lean & Mean Sloppy Joe’s

I’m going to admit right now that I know that sloppy joe’s are just about the least gourmet meal ever. They’re not pretty, not usually healthy, and not really a meal about which to boast.

These sloppy joe’s, however, are darn good, surprisingly low fat, and full of veggies. And they gave me another reason to use one of the many packs of lean ground beef in my freezer from my father-in-law’s farm. Yay for 20 lbs of grass-fed beef!

I found this recipe on Dashing Dish and only made a few modifications, but they were really only for taste preference. The only GF item you need is GF hamburger buns, such as Udi’s.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 small green bell pepper, chopped (I usually don’t like green peppers, but in this recipe it really boosts the flavor!)
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1/3 Cup water
  • 1 15-oz can tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp mustard (I like spicy brown)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder (her recipe calls for 1/2 tsp, but can you really have too much garlic flavor?)
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup ketchup

Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and place over medium heat. Saute green pepper, onion and zucchini along with water for 4-5 minutes. Add ketchup and continue cooking until veggies are tender and water is evaporated. Add beef and cook through.

Sloppy Joe veggies

Sloppy Joe's

When beef is finished cooking, stir in tomato sauce, garlic powder, and mustard. Let cook for another 5 minutes or until thickened slightly. Add salt to taste.

Sloppy Joe's

Most people probably eat sloppy joe’s as a sandwich…not us. We just put two GF buns open-faced on the plate, spoon the sloppy joe mixture on top and eat with a fork.

Sloppy Joe's

Still not pretty, and definitely fancy what the the Ruffles and all (don’t judge…they were low fat too)…but these make for a delicious dinner! Coming from someone who never really liked sloppy joe’s and from my husband with a pretty picky palette, these are fabulous and one of our favorite comfort-food-kind-of-meals! Enjoy!

Cheesy Potato Wedges

Tonight was pick-a-steak Saturday at our house. We have recently acquired a large amount of meat (ground beef, t-bones, sirloins, rib eyes, oh my!) from my father-in-law’s farm, so of course we had to put it to good use! Tonight’s pick: sirloin, with a side of potato wedges and zucchini chips.

Now about these potato wedges…so easy and so delicious with a just a bit of a kick and the right balance of crispy edges and tender insides. What better side to go with our sirloin? It doesn’t get much better than steak and potatoes.

Ingredients:

  • 3 russet potatoes
  • About 2 tbs olive oil
  • 3 pinches each of garlic powder, salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Wash potatoes, pat dry with paper towel. Then slice each potato in half, then slice the halves in half and throw into plastic Ziploc bag.

Image

Combine olive oil and seasonings in small bowl, then pour into bag with potatoes. Shake bag around to make sure potatoes are well covered. Bake for 30 minutes, flipping halfway.

Image

When finished baking, sprinkle cheddar cheese over wedges to your desire. Bake an additional 10 minutes or until cheese is melted and potatoes are nice and tender when touched with fork.

Image

Don’t they look good? Excuse my inability to take a pretty food picture.

The best part about these (besides being easy) is that you can pretty much use any seasoning and/or cheese you want to! I was actually planning to use parmesan…and then I realized somehow parmesan did not make it into the grocery cart last week. Cheddar made a good substitute though!

And I must say these potato wedges were fantastic with this sirloin!

Image

Happy sirloin Saturday to us! Make these soon and enjoy!