Archive for » February, 2010 «

This cabbage soup is the BEST ever! It has a sweet savory taste. It is AMAZING!!!


What You Need!!!!!

  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup raw white rice
  • 1 quart plus 2 cups chicken stock, divided
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground meatloaf mix (a combination of beef, pork and veal)
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika, ( adjust to your taste buds:)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 carrot, thinly sliced with a vegetable peeler into strips then finely chopped
  • 1/2-3/4 head Savoy cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • Handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons dill, finely chopped

Make It!!!!

Heat a sauce pot over medium-high heat with 2 turns of the pan of extra-virgin olive oil, about 2 tablespoons. Add the rice and toss to coat in oil. Add 2 cups of chicken stock, bring up to a simmer, cover and cook for 16 to 18 minutes or until the rice is tender.

Heat a deep pot over medium high heat. Add the remaining extra-virgin olive oil, once hot add meat and begin to brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Season the meat with allspice, coriander, smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Add bay leaf, onions, garlic and carrots. Cook veggies 2 to 3 minutes to begin to soften them, then add cabbage and wilt it down a bit. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, and remaining stock and cover the pot. Raise the heat to high and bring the soup to a simmer. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Once the rice is cooked, add to the soup and continue to simmer for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in parsley and dill, adjust salt and pepper to your taste, and serve.

Note: You can always adjust the spices, and meat mixture to WAY you like!!

Buon Appetito Always~ Mangia!!!!

This is a very good cornbread that can be served with soups, stews, and casseroles. It is moist and has a little “KICK” to it.


What You Need!!!!

  • 1 1/2 c self-rising cornmeal
  • 1/2 c self-rising flour
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/3 c milk
  • 1/4 c oil
  • 1/2 c corn kernals
  • 2 jalapenos (diced)
  • 1/8 c onions (diced)
  • 1 lime (juiced)
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • One 8″ or 9″ cast-iron skillet

Make It!!!!
1. Preheat oven to 450°.
2. Soak corn and onions in the lime juice.
3. Put oil into skillet, being sure to coat entire inner surface of skillet, and then place skillet into warming oven. (This achieves 2 goals: The oil is thinned prior to adding it to the batter, and the skillet is already hot when you add the complete mixture, ensuring a crisp outer edge.)
4. After 15 minutes strain corn and onion from lime juice.
5. Mix together all dry ingredients. Mix in the milk,eggs,corn, jalapenos, and onions.
6. Making sure the skillet and oil are quite hot, but not smoking (about 5 minutes in the warming oven), steadily pour and stir in the hot oil into the rest of the batter. You want to stir as the oil is being poured, or you may risk burning the batter.
7. Pour the batter into the now hot pan. If you’re lucky, it will spatter as it hits the hot iron.
8. After batter is in pan place into oven about 20-24 minutes. The top should be golden-brown and cracking a bit from rising. After taking it out of the oven and is still hot spread the butter and drizzle the honey over the top.
9. Allow the cornbread enough time to soak the honey and butter in before serving.

If you don’t like honey~ don’t use it, IT is still very good with butter!

I don’t know about you, but I am constantly trying to find some different and EASY to make. Serve this with some Mexican cornbread.

What You Need!!!!!
1 pound shredded, cooked chicken
1-15 ounce can whole peeled tomatoes
1-10 ounce can enchilada sauce
1 onion, diced
1-4 ounce can green chile peppers, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups water
1-14 1/2 ounce can low sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 bay leaf
1-10 ounce package frozen peas
Vegetable oil
7 soft corn tortillas, cut into strips
1/2 cup sour cream

Make It!!!!
1. Combine chicken, tomatoes, enchilada sauce, onion, green chiles, and garlic to crock pot; add water and broth and sprinkle with cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper, and bay leaf; stir in corn and cover with lid.
2. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 3 to 4 hours.
3. When ready to serve, preheat oven to 200 degrees F and brush a baking sheet with oil. Place tortilla strips on baking sheet and bake 10 to 15 minutes or until crispy.
4. Top soup with sour cream and tortilla strips.

Buon Appetito Always~ Mangia!!!!

This is a QUICK meal you can have on the table in about 30 to 45 minutes from start to finish. If you have never ate capers, I can tell you if you like olives, you will like capers. Serve this with some warm crusty bread, or garlic bread, and it is quite an impressive meal.
What You Need!!!!!!
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 8 thin chicken cutlets (about 1 1/2 pounds total)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup  chicken broth
  • 1 can (14 ounces) artichoke hearts packed in water, rinsed, drained, and quartered
  • 2 tablespoons rinsed and drained capers
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 8 ounces angel-hair pasta
  • 1/2 cup parsley leaves
    Make It!!!!!
    Set a large pot of salted water to boil. Place flour in a shallow dish, and season with salt and pepper. Dredge cutlets, shaking off excess. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Cook chicken in batches, adding remaining oil as needed, until light golden, 1 to 3 minutes per side; transfer to a dish.
    Add broth to skillet, and bring to a boil; cook until reduced by half. Add artichokes, capers, and the chicken with any juices. Gently swirl to combine, and bring just to a boil. Remove skillet from heat. Swirl in butter, and cover to keep warm.
    Add pasta to boiling water. Cook until al dente; drain. Serve chicken and sauce over pasta, topped with parsley.

    Buon Appetito Always~ Mangia!!!!

    After trying several Tortilla Soup recipes, I have finally found the ONE that beats all! This soup was so good, my family devoured it. I am making it for the second time in a month, and this time am going to double it. Also this is the first time I have “made” my own tortilla strips, and they are wonderful! Just as good as the restaurant kind, and they keep well and are crispy for days when kept in a ziplock bag.
    What You Need!!!

    (10) 6″ corn tortillas – cut into 1/4″ thick strips
    1 large. onion – minced
    2 cloves garlic – minced
    2 Tbs. vegetable oil OR olive oil
    15 oz. can tomato puree
    4 cups chicken broth
    up to 1/2 cup hot sauce – to taste
    1/2 med. green bell pepper – seeded, minced, optional
    1 Tbs. minced jalapeno pepper – optional
    1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
    1 tsp. granulated sugar
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1 tsp. chili powder – optional
    1/4 tsp. black pepper
    1/4 cup all-purpose flour mixed with 1/2 cup water
    1 lb. boneless, skinless cooked chicken – cubed
    1 cup heavy whipping cream
    1/4 cup sour cream
    8 oz. Velveeta

    1 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro – for garnish, optional

     Make It!!!

    -Deep-fry tortilla strips in 350 degree oil OR spray with non-stick cooking spray and bake in a 400 degree oven until crisp; lightly salt if desired; set aside.
    -In a large pot over medium-high heat, saute onions and garlic in oil until soft.
    -Add the next 10 ingredients to the pot, bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 20 minutes.
    -Whisk flour/water mixture into soup.
    -Bring contents of pot to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    -Add chicken to pot and continue to simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    -Add cream, sour cream, and cheese to pot; stir until cheese has melted.
    -Pour soup into bowls, pile tortilla strips into a “haystack” shape on top of the soup, garnish with cilantro.

    Note: I have thrown in a tub of “El Paso Seasoned Chicken to replace the chopped chicken and hot sauce. It tasted AWESOME and was a time saver!


    Buon Appetito Always~ Mangia!!!!


    A simple cookie flavored with brandy and a touch of orange and vanilla. The crisp, dry yet tender texture is perfect with a cup of tea as you plan your spring garden and pour over seed catalogs. Not too sweet, you’ll find yourself thinking of your Nonna’s  Easter cookies dipped in a bit of sherry for the grownups.  This forgiving dough also lends itself to many different shapes so you can create your own traditions.

    What You Need!!!

    • 4 cups Unbleached All Purpose Flour
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 3/4 cup brandy (or apple juice)
    • 1/4 cup water
    • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
    • 3/4 teaspoon Orange Extract
    • 1 teaspoon Vanilla

    Vanilla glaze

    • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
    • dash of salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1-2 tablespoons milk, to form a glaze consistency


    Make it!!!

    Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line two half sheet pans with parchment paper or spritz with cooking spray.

    Place the flour, salt and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Blend on low speed for 30 seconds to incorporate. In a liquid measure blend the brandy (or apple juice), water, vegetable oil and Extracts. Pour the liquid ingredients onto the dry and blend on medium speed for 2 minutes or until a soft dough forms.

    Allow the dough to rest for 5 minutes. Break off the dough in pieces, each about the size of a large walnut. Roll each piece into a rope. From here you may form rings, or simple coils and knots.

    To form a crescent horn, take two ropes and gently twist one over the other about 4-5 times to form the twist. Curve the twist until the two ends nearly meet and place on the baking sheet with about 1 inch between cookies. These do not spread much, so can be spaced fairly close together.


    For the glaze, blend all ingredients in a small bowl to a medium thin consistency with no lumps. The glaze should be the consistency of heavy cream or melted ice cream.
    Bake the cookies for 25-30 minutes or until lightly browned. The interior of the cookie should be quite dry at this point. Break open one cookie to check the interior. If the cookies still seem doughy inside, return to the oven for an additional 6-10 minutes or until done inside. Remove from the oven and set on a rack to cool.

    When the cookies are cooled, prepare the glaze and dip the top of each cookie to coat. Sprinkle with freshly grated orange zest or candied peel if desired.


    Buon Appetito Always~ Mangia!!!!

    If I know I’ll be having a busy day with little time for cooking, I prepare this tasty main dish,” “Brimming with tender chicken and colorful vegetables, it smells so good while cooking. It is inexpensive and easy ~ and your house will smell heavenly!

    What You Need!!!

    • 1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
    • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
    • Dash cayenne pepper
    • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
    • 1 celery rib, chopped
    • 1/2 cup chopped green pepper
    • 1/4 cup chopped onion
    • 2 cloves garlic
    • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen peas, thawed
    • 2 tablespoons diced pimientos, drained
    • Hot cooked rice or noodles

    Make It!!!!

    • In a 3-qt. slow cooker, combine soup, flour, pepper and cayenne until
    • smooth. Stir in chicken, celery, green pepper and onion. Cover and
    • cook on low for 4-5 hours or until meat juices run clear. Stir in
    • peas and pimientos. Cook 30 minutes longer or until heated through.
    • Serve over rice or noodles and with some crusty bread!

    Buon Appetito Always~ Mangia!!!!

    This is so quick and easy!! Keep in mind, if you don’t like one of the fruits listed, change it up. I have used peaches, instead of the strawberries, and it was wonderful. Adjust it to YOUR liking!!


    What You Need!!!!!


    • 1 (10-ounce) bag frozen strawberries
    • 1 (10-ounce) bag frozen blueberries
    • 1 (10-ounce) bag frozen raspberries
    • 1/3 to 2/3 cup sugar, depending on your level of preferred sweetness
    • 1/2 cup baking mix


    • 2 1/4 cups baking mix
    • 1/4 cup sugar, plus 1/4 cup
    • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

    MAKE IT!!!!

    Spray the insert of a slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a large mixing bowl, toss together all the frozen fruit, sugar and 1/2 cup baking mix. Transfer the fruit to the slow cooker. In another large mixing bowl, stir together 2 1/4 cups baking mix, 1/4 cup sugar, melted butter and milk with a wooden spoon. With your hands, drop bits of dough on top of the fruit in the slow cooker. In a small mixing bowl, stir together the remaining 1/4 cup sugar and ground cinnamon. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar on top of the dough and place the lid on the slow cooker. Turn the power onto high and slow cook for 3 to 4 hours until the topping has puffed and the fruit is bubbling.

    Serve warm with whipped cream or ice cream…Also yummy warmed up for breakfast!!!! 😉

    Buon Appetito Always~ Mangia!!!!