Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Chicken Fajitas

I love fajitas, but have never tried to make them before. I found these recipes on about.com and the fajitas tasted fantastic.


Fajita Seasoning Mix
source:http://busycooks.about.com/od/homemademixes/r/fajitaseasonmix.htm

Ingredients:
  • 3 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. paprika
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 2-1/2 tsp. crushed chicken bouillon cube
  • 1-1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin

Preparation:
Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl. Pour into small glass or plastic container, seal tightly and store in a cool, dry place.
Makes the equivalent of 3 packets of commercial or purchased Fajita Seasoning Mix.


Chicken Fajitas
source: http://busycooks.about.com/od/chickenbreastrecipes/r/chickenfajitas.htm

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. oil
  • 3 Tbsp. Fajita Seasoning Mix
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup grated Cheddar cheese
  • 6 flour tortillas

Preparation:
Cut chicken into thin strips. Cut green pepper into strips. Heat oil in large skillet and add chicken. Cook and stir over medium high heat for 5 minutes. Then add three tablespoons of the Fajita Seasoning Mix, water, green pepper and onion. Reduce heat to medium. Cook and stir over medium heat until chicken is cooked through and vegetables are tender. Serve with salsa, sour cream, and grated cheese in warmed tortillas.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Crepes

We just made these for a delicious summertime treat. It was a perfect ending to a great day!

This crepe recipe is from my Vita-mix cookbook. It is so quick and easy to make and can be made in any blender.

4 eggs
1 cup skim evaporated milk
1 Tablespoon sugar or other sweetener
1 cup flour

Blend. Pour a small amount into lightly greased pan. Move pan around so it spreads the crepe mixture thin. Cook for a minute until it dries out enough to flip. Flip and cook until slightly browned. Remove and fill with your favorite toppings.

For a sweet crepe, I love homemade whipping cream and fresh berries (strawberries, raspberries, blackberries) or whatever you like.

TIP: I also use this crepe recipe to make manicotti. It is delicious and cuts down on prep time because you can put a spoonful of filling in and roll it up rather than having to stuff the pasta shells with the cheese.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Pampered Chef Lemon Blueberry Trifle

1 frozen prepared pound cake (16 oz)
2 lemons
1 1/2 cups milk
1 container (8oz) sour cream
1 container (8 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed, divided
2 packages (3.4 oz each) lemon instant pudding and pie filling
1 pint fresh blueberries (about 2 cups) (or 1 can blueberry pie filling)
1 square (1oz) white chocolate for baking

1. Cut pound cake into 1-inch cubes; place in large colander or bowl. Using a lemon Zester, make several lengthwise scores in one lemon, top to bottom; slice into 6 slices. Cut each slice in half and set aside for garnish. Zest remaining lemon using short strokes; set aside. Juice lemon. Sprinkle lemon juice over pound cake; toss. (I feel like this step is unnecessary as the lemon zest is overpowered by the lemon pudding. I leave it out of the next step as well)

2. In a bowl, combine milk, sour cream, half of the whipped topping and reserved lemon zest; whisk until smooth. Add pudding mix; whisk until mixture begins to thicken.

3. Set aside 12 blueberries for garnish. To assemble trifle, place 1/3 of the cake cubes into bottom of chilled trifle bowl or clear glass bowl. Top with 1/3 of the blueberries. Grate 1/4 of the chocolate over blueberries. Top with of the pudding mixture, pressing lightly. Repeat layers 2 more times, reserving the remaining grated chocolate for garnish. Spread remaining pudding over entire top of trifle, creating a smooth surface.

4. If desired, decorate top with whipped topping by piping 12 rosettes around edge of bowl. Place one lemon slice between rosettes and one reserved blueberry on each rosette. Or, spread remaining whipped topping over top. Place lemon slices and blueberries on top. Grate remaining chocolate in center. Chill until serving.

Yield: 10 large servings or 20 sample servings

Agua de Sandia (Watermelon Water)

I found this traditional Mexican recipe in a magazine, where the author described how the second half of her watermelon usually sits in her fridge, leaking everywhere, until it goes bad. This totally describes our family's use of watermelon, too! So I was very excited to try this recipe that uses up lots of it. I had actually had something similar on a trip to Belize once, and loved it. If it's not watermelon season, you can also try other types of chopped fruit such as mango, cantaloupe, strawberries or grapes. We've only used watermelon, and it is so refreshing on hot summer days.

2 cups diced watermelon
3 cups water, divided
sugar to taste (up to 1/8 cup)

Puree watermelon and 2 cups water in a blender until very smooth. Pour into a pitcher. Stir in remaining water and sweeten if desired with sugar. Stir until sugar is completely dissolved. Chill at least 1 hour, pour over ice and serve.

I altered the amounts a little bit, because if you don't dilute it as much, you don't need to add as much sugar. My adjustments are: 3 cups watermelon, 1 1/2 cups water (total), 1 Tbs. sugar.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Laurie's BBQ Sauce

This is the BBQ sauce I grew up on. It's my all-time favorite. It's the perfect blend of seasonings and tastes SO good on the grill with BBQ Chicken. It smells a little strong of vinegar while it's cooking but doesn't taste like it when you eat it. Try it tonight!

I have doubled the original recipe because it will save in the fridge for a few weeks and then I don’t have to make it again for a while before I use it up! I usually just pour it into a canning jar and stick it in the fridge. This recipe is super easy to make and will only take about 5 minutes of prep and 20 minutes to cook.

Laurie's BBQ Sauce:
Sauté until brown:
½ cup chopped onion in 2 Tbsp bacon drippings or other fat

Add and simmer for 20 minutes:
1 cup water
½ cup apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
½ cup lemon juice
¼ cup brown sugar
2 cups catsup
1 tsp salt
½ tsp paprika
½ tsp pepper
2 tsp mustard
1 tsp chili powder
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp paprika

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Quick and Easy Pizza

I wouldn’t say we have a great crust recipe but it’s a super fast and easy recipe to make. We throw this together all the time. For awhile, we made this pizza every Sunday right after church. Our favorite way to make our pizza is with Sweet Baby Ray’s Original BBQ sauce, chopped cooked chicken, mozzarella and gouda cheese. Everyone loves this pizza but it’s more in the ingredients than the crust. I’ll also include our red sauce recipe as it’s easy and quick as well. The dough makes 2 large pizzas or 3-4 medium/small pizzas. Make sure you make the crust thin as this dough does not work with a thick crust! If we only want one pizza, we put the other half rolled in flour into a zip lock bag. It can be refrigerated for about a week or frozen and later thawed.


7 Minute Pizza Dough
4 ½ cups flour
1 ¾ tsp salt
1 tsp yeast
¼ cup olive oil (optional)-we always use it
1 ¾ cup ice cold water

Mix in bread machine for 7 minutes. Makes 2-4 pizzas depending upon size.


Pizza Sauce
1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
A little less than one tablespoon oregano
1 tsp paprika
1 ½ tsp garlic (crushed/powdered) We usually use crushed

We cook our large pizzas in the oven at 425 degrees F for between 15-18 minutes