Friday, August 31, 2018

Doritos Taco Salad

Taco Tuesday just got more exciting. I went to Taco Bell and had their dorito taco and said “what the hay” why don’t we take this idea one step further and make it a Dorito Taco Salad.  

So play with this Dorito Taco Salad recipe and use ground beef OR ground turkey, chicken on cubed chicken. You can also skip the meat all together and make this into a vegetarian meal. Skip cheddar and use shredded Pepper Jack for added heat. Add avocado, black olives, chopped bell peppers or jalapeno pepper, drizzle it all with nacho sauce, whatever your heart desires.Yum Yum!

Thursday, August 30, 2018

The B.E.L.T.

How can you make a BLT better? ...........

Add an egg!  And call it a BELT!

Serves 1


3 slices of bacon, fried crispy
2 slices of tomato
2 leaves of iceberg lettuce or Boston Bibb lettuce
1 fried egg
Bread of your choosing, preferably Texas toast, toasted

Make your own sauce with:

1.5 tablespoons mayonnaise
Juice from 1 lemon wedge
4 Chopped basil leaves
1/8th teaspoon minced garlic

  1. Begin by making the sauce. Whip together mayonnaise, basil, lemon juice, and garlic and set aside.
  2. In a cast iron skillet, fry the bacon over medium heat, flipping occasionally, until desired crispiness has been achieved.
  3. Remove bacon from pan and fry the egg, sunny side up in the bacon grease.
  4. Remove egg and set aside. 
  5. Take both pieces of toast and add them to the bacon greased cast iron skillet. Let each slice cook for a few minutes on each side until the bread becomes golden and toasted.
  1. Once they're crispy, slather each side with the homemade sauce (more or less depending on your love for mayo) and on one piece, layer the lettuce, tomato, bacon and fried egg. Gently top the sandwich with the remaining piece of bread, so the egg yolk doesn't burst, and serve immediately. Yum Yum!

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Instant Pot Gluten Free Beef Short Ribs

Instant Pot Gluten Free Beef Short Ribs...oh my

Keep the rest of the meal gluten free by pairing the ribs with potatoes, Short-grained brown rice or quinoa and a vegetable. Or not, I’m going to have mine with creamy Orzo with onions and peppers. I know, I know more cream, but I’m sitting here and my mouth is watering. There is a gluten free Orzo out there, it’s called DeLallo Italian Gluten Free Orzo. Just incase your missing Orzo, it’s worth a try.

I don’t know if you have an Instant Pot, but it makes life so much easier. Not only with how fast it cooks, the cleanup is a breeze. This is the only way I make my hard boiled eggs, 5 minutes and they are done AND PERFECT! Mashed potatoes only take 8 minutes. I use the Mini Instant Pot, it’s the perfect size for me and an occasional granddaughter or two.

This recipe serves 3-4 (1-2 Ribs per person, 2-3 lbs) I’m going to cook only 4 ribs in my Mini, their total weight is 1.6 lbs. Total Time: about an hour.


  • 1 teaspoon rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon onion salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sage
  • 2-3 lbs. beef short rib
  • 2-3 tablespoons high temperature oil
  • 1 6oz can tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • 6 cloves garlic

  1. Mix the first five ingredients (the spices) and rub on the outside of the beef short rib; set aside.
  2. Set your Instant Pot to sauté.
  3. Drizzle oil into instant pot.
  4. Using tongs, lower short ribs into Instant Pot.
  5. Sear all sides.
  6. Remove short ribs; set aside.
  7. Add tomato paste, water, balsamic, Dijon mustard, cocoa, and garlic to the Instant Pot and mix with a spoon until combined.
  8. Add short ribs.
  9. Place lid on Instant Pot and lock into place.
  10. Make sure your steam vent is turned to closed.
  11. Turn the settings to "Pressure Cooker", and "Slow Release" and set the timer for 40 minutes.
  12. Once the 40 minutes are up, let the Instant Pot sit for 5 minutes.
  13. Carefully turn the pressure release valve.
  14. Once all the pressure is released, unlock the lid.
  15. Spoon sauce over each piece of beef short rib and serve warm. Yum Yum!

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Katsu Sandos

bon appetit has an article about the Katsu Sando Boom in their September magazine. Apparently it’s all the rage on the internet. Here is what they had to say about the ingredients and how to put it together.


I guess the traditional Katsu Sando is made with a Japanese milk bread, but you can use a good white bread. If buying a whole loaf use an electric knife for even slices and leave the bread untoasted. You’ll have crispy pork and crunchy cabbage so you need soft bread to give it some balance.


Use a pork loin and marinate it first before frying in a mixture of soy sauce, minced garlic, mirin and toasted black peppercorns.


Crunch is elusive with any sandwich and hot katsu can get soggy fast. But if you coat your meat in panko and fried bread scraps you’ll get the ultimate crackled crust.


Say yes to the cabbage as it will cut through the richness of the fried pork loin and sauces.


Tonkatsu sauce is a given or make your own with Japanese hot mustard, soy sauce, rice vinegar, oyster sauce and dried prunes made smooth in a blender. Add a few swipes of mayo to finish the job. Yum Yum!

Friday, August 24, 2018

Three Cheese and Spinach Manicotti

It really easy to make this Three Cheese and Spinach Manicotti. Have you made it before? I think I made it once about 30 years ago. I just forget about it. Like all pasta dishes there are certain pasta shapes that work well with different types of sauces.

Long skinny pastas work well with light cream and oil based sauces. Thicker pasta like Manicotti needs a thicker, meatier sauce. Heavy creams, cheesy and pesto sauces pair well with twisted pasta shapes.

This dish serves 4 and takes a total time of 45 minutes.


  • 1/2 lb manicotti noodles, cook according to package directions 
  • 16 oz fresh spinach 
  • 24 oz ricotta cheese 
  • 16 oz mozzarella cheese 
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste 
  • 3 eggs,beaten 
  • 1 16 oz store brought jar. 
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese for dusting

  • Cook noodles and drain well.
  • Remove tough stems from spinach and cook in boiling water for 2 minutes.
  • Using paper towels or a clean dish towel, squeeze as much water out of the spinach as possible.
  • Chop spinach into small pieces.
  • Mix together the ricotta, mozzarella, 3/4 cup Parmesan, eggs and spinach.
  • Season with salt and pepper
  • Stuff cooked manicotti with the mixture, being careful not to break noodles.
  • Cover the bottom of an oven proof baking dish with some of the marinara sauce,and place the stuffed noodles atop.
  • Pour in enough sauce to almost cover the noodles and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan.
  • Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes. Yum Yum!

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Chicken Alfredo Roll-Ups

CHICKEN Alfredo Roll-ups ...i wish i thought of it!

Do you have leftover chicken? This is a great recipe and ill say it again ...the kids will love it. Serves 4 Total Time 45 MinuteS

4 tbsp. butter
2  garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cup milk (preferably 2% or whole)
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley, plus more for garnish
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
4 cups shredded cooked chicken 
12 cooked lasagna noodles
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. 
  2. In large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Whisk in flour and cook until mixture is bubbling and golden, 1 minute more. Gradually pour in milk, whisking constantly. Bring mixture to a simmer, then stir in cream cheese and Parmesan. Let simmer until sauce thickens, 2 to 3 minutes. Add lemon juice and parsley and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Cook lasagna noodles according to package instructions.
  1. Spoon a thin layer of sauce onto bottom of a large baking dish. 
  2. Lay cooked noodles in a single layer on a cutting board or baking sheet. Spread alfredo mixture on each noodle, top with shredded chicken, and roll up. Lay roll-ups seam side-down in baking dish. Spoon remaining sauce on top of roll-ups. 
  3. Bake until sauce is bubbly and golden, 20 minutes. 
  4. Garnish with more parsley before serving.  Yum Yum!
  5. Thanks Delish for the loved it!

Monday, August 20, 2018

Asian Beef Short Ribs

What to make ..what to make?  Isn’t that what you always ask yourself? Or you hear “Mom, what’s for dinner?”  This Asian Short Rib recipe isn’t something quick to make, its one of those weekend meals. It takes a total time to prepare and cook 4 hours and 10 minutes. Even though it serves 4, I’d make it for Saturday night date night and have any leftovers for Sunday.


1 1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 4 meaty beef short ribs
  • 1 large red onion, peeled and diced

Spicy Glaze:
  • 1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp cayenne
  • 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp water

  • 3 cloves garlic peeled and crushed
  • 1 14oz can diced tomatoes
  • 2 1/4 cup beef stock
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce 
  • 1 tbsp A1 Steak sauce 
  • 1 tbsp light brown sugar

Serve With:
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes (optional)
  • Small bunch freshly chopped coriander (cilantro)
  • Boiled rice


  1. Heat oven to 140C/275F

  2. Heat oil in a large casserole pan on a high heat. Season the short ribs with salt and pepper, place in the pan and then brown on all sides (takes about 6-8 mins). Take the short ribs out of the pan and place on a plate.

  3. Turn the heat down to low, place the diced onion into the pan, season with a pinch of salt and pepper and gently cook for 5 minutes, stirring regularly until softened.

  4. While the onions are cooking, make the glaze by mixing the paprika, cinnamon, cayenne, dark brown sugar, honey and water in a small bowl. Spread half of it over the short ribs.

  5. Add the garlic to the onions and give a stir. Allow to cook for 30 seconds, then add the diced tomatoes, stock, Worcestershire sauce, and brown sauce. Bring to the boil and then place the short ribs on top. Place a lid on the pan and place in the oven for 3 hours (check it occasionally. If it starts to look too dry, add in a splash of water).

  6. After three hours, take out of the oven and give everything a little stir.

  7. Spread the rest of the glaze on the short ribs, sprinkle with the light brown sugar. Turn up the oven to 200C/400F and cook uncovered for 20-30 minutes until the short ribs are dark and sticky looking.

  8. Take out of the oven, sprinkle with chilli flakes (optional) and fresh coriander and serve with boiled rice. Yum Yum!

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken

Every once in awhile I wonder, as the holidays get closer and closer, what can I make that is different yet festive.   Don’t you get tired of the same ham or turkey dinner? 

Now and then we’ve tried pork, Chinese or roast beef, but not only do I think this Cranberry Balsamic Roasted Chicken is easy, it will look fantastic on your table, whether it's for guests or just a few family members. Serves 5 Total Time: a little over an hour.


4-6 chicken breast and/or thighs, skin on
Fresh thyme
A sprinkle of Italian herbs
1/3 to 1/2 cup fresh cranberries
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar


1/3 cup cranberries
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon minced garlic


Clean chicken then place in a roasting pan, set aside. Make your marinade by blending all the ingredients in a blender until liquified and smooth. Pour over the chicken, coat evenly. Cover and place in fridge for a minimum of 30 minutes or overnight. Once marinated preheat oven to 375F.

Add the extra cranberries along with the thyme and Italian herbs, spread evenly over the tops of the chicken. Bake skin sides down for 25-30 minutes.

In a small bowl combine the teaspoon each of maple syrup and balsamic vinegar. After the 25-30 minutes turn the chick over and brush on the maple syrup, balsamic vinegar mixture. Add more seasonings, if desired. Check to see if the chicken is done. If the chicken is no longer pink inside then just BROIL for 3-4 minutes to make skins crispy. If it is still pink bake a little longer before broiling. If using boneless chicken total baking time should be around 35 minutes. Use a meat thermometer to gauge if done, internal temperature should reach 160 degrees.

When done remove from the oven and spoon sauce from pan over chicken. Serve with freshly roasted cranberries and herbs if desired.  YUM YUM!

PS:  If using skinless chicken cooking time will be 20-25 minutes and no broiling time is needed.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Creole Cubed Steak

Cubed steaks are inexpensive and can be delicious if cooked right. Believe me I’ve had a lot of chewy cubed steak in my lifetime. Now I usually cook them in a crockpot for 7-8 hours covered in either golden mushroom soup or a couple cans of stewed tomatoes to get them tender.

I recently purchased some Creole spices. Do you know the difference between Creole and Cajun spices?

HungryHowies explains the difference like this:

Cajun seasoning relies on the use of many peppers, such as white and black pepper, bell peppers and cayenne peppers. This cuisine also incorporates paprika and garlic. The use of onion and celery is also common in Cajun cuisine.
Creole cuisine is influenced by people born to settlers in French colonial Louisiana, specifically in New Orleans. Creole foods are a combination of many different cultures, from French to Irish to West African. Creole seasoning primarily relies on herbs like oregano, bay leaf, basil, thyme, rosemary, parsley and paprika.
Creole seasoning vs. Cajun seasoning really comes down to one question, do you want something spicy or something seasoned? If you want spicy, you’re more likely to enjoy Cajun foods. If you want something well-seasoned, opt for creole.

The Creole spice I purchased (Tony Charchere’s French Creole Cuisine More Spice Creole Seasoning) has salt, red pepper, black pepper, chili powder and dehydrated garlic. I really liked it on my salmon, so I’m going to try it in this recipe. Serves 10 Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes. I’m going to cut this recipe in half


3 lbs cubed steaks

Vegetable oil 
Salt and pepper, to taste 
Garlic powder 
1 onion, sliced 
1 green pepper, sliced 
  1 cup flour
  1 teaspoon each salt and pepper 
  2 cans cream of mushroom soup
  1 pkg onion soup mix
  2 cups beef broth 
  1 teaspoon paprika 
  1 teaspoon garlic powder 
  1 tablespoon Creole Seasoning 


Preheat oven to 350F

In a skillet heat with a 1/2” of the oil over med/high heat. Season steaks with salt, pepper and garlic powder, to taste. Make sure you season both sides. In a pie tin mix the breading ingredients together then dredge both sides of the steaks through the flour. Brown steaks 4 minutes on each side, remove to a paper towel. 

In a bowl whisk together the gravy ingredients. In a casserole dish layer the sliced onions first, then the green peppers, top the peppers with the cooked cubed steaks then cover with the gravy. Tightly wrap in foil and cook an 1hr to an 1hr 20 minutes. 

Serve over mashed potatoes, rice or buttered noodles. Yum Yum!


Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Crockpot Pot Roast

I don’t know about you, but I love a good pot roast that’s been cooking all day in a crockpot. This recipe is so easy just put 7 ingredients in the crockpot and 8 hours later dinner is ready. The food is yummy and clean up is a breeze. What else could you ask for.

If you don’t want to wait 8 hours and you have an Instant Pot just....

  • Cook a roast in an instant pot, first season the meat generously on all sides.
  • Add oil to the pot and set to the saute setting. Sear meat on all sides, then set the pressure cook setting on high.
  • Add beef broth along with potatoes, onions, and carrots if desired, cover, and cook.
  • Once finished cooking do a natural release for 10 minutes, then a quick release until the float valve goes down. Remove lid, transfer roast and veggies to a platter, and shred the roast

Serves 8 Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes



1. Place beef and vegetables in slow cooker.

2. Mix Seasoning Mix and water until blended. Pour over beef and vegetables. Cover.

3. Cook 8 hours on LOW or 4 hours on HIGH. Remove roast and vegetables to serving platter. Stir sauce before serving

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Cauliflower Flax Pizza with Vegetables

This Cauliflower Flax Pizza with Vegetables is interesting. If your looking for a healthy way to have a pizza you’ve got to try this. Serves 2-4 Total Time: 35 minutes


For the Crust:

1 head cauliflower
1 egg
  • ¾ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 2 tbsp ground flax seed
  • 1 tbsp spicy spaghetti seasoning
  • ¼ tsp crushed red pepper
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp black pepper

  • Toppings:

  • ¾ cup pizza sauce 
  • ¾ red or orange bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • ½ medium onion, sliced
  • 5-6 cherry tomatoes, finely sliced
  • ½ cup shredded cheese (mozzarella or blend

  • Directions:

  • 1.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees and spray round pizza pan with coconut oil or olive oil cooking spray *See notes regarding parchment paper.

  • 2.  Chop cauliflower into pieces and add it food processor. Pulse for 30-45 seconds or until cauliflower is riced into fine pieces. Add riced cauliflower to microwave safe bowl and heat on high for 4-5 minutes. *See notes. {At this point, once the riced cauliflower has cooled, you can put it in a double layer of cheese cloth and squeeze to remove all moisture. This did not help my crust hold together any better than the other times, but it may work for you!}

  • 3.  In a medium bowl, add cooked cauliflower, egg, flax, cheese and seasonings, then stir to combine.  Transfer to greased pizza pan and spread out, using spatula, to an even round crust.  Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or until lightly golden brown.

  • 4.  While crust bakes, add chopped veggies to baking sheet, sprinkle with desired seasonings (I used the Spicy Spaghetti Seasoning) and bake for approximately 10 minutes or until soft. You can also toss them in a pan on the stove, spray with a little coconut oil cooking spray and saute for 5-7 minutes until onions are translucent.

  • 5.  Once crust has baked first 15 minutes, remove, add sauce, veggies and cheese and bake an additional 5 minutes, then turn oven to broil and bake for 1-2 minutes, watching carefully to ensure it does not burn.  Sprinkle with extra Parmesan cheese and crushed red pepper if desired, then EAT! Yum Yum!
    *This particular time, I tried using parchment paper, but in the past and since then I've put the crusted on a greases pan and I prefer that method. The crust tended to stick to the parchment paper.
    *Oven Instructions: Remove leaves and separate florets, roast in the oven for approximately 15 minutes on 375 degrees. Then remove and cool before adding to food processor to rice.
    Thanks lemonand for the recipe.