Friday, December 26, 2008

Paula Deen Two-fer

I've got a Paula Deen two-fer for you guys. I was in charge of desserts over the past couple of nights and here are a couple of winners.

Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cakes

Creme de Menthe Brownies

Monday, December 22, 2008

Pancake Dinner


I was hoping to start a new family tradition featuring a pancake dinner. The tradition idea got a leukwarm reception, but that didn't stop everyone from gobbling up the pancakes!

I used Alton Brown's instant pancake mix recipe as my base. You mix enough dry ingredients up for three batches, then whenever you are ready, you add the wet ingredient which consist of a lot of butter. Be sure to shake up your buttermilk to get consistant results! Also, I found the batter to be a bit thin for my tastes, so I don't add the full amount of buttermilk.


We made a variety of different types: plain, blueberry, chocolate chip, and banana nut. Banana nut seemed to be the favorite, but yuck, I hate bananas!


For my family, which consisted of 6 adults and 3 small children, I made a double recipe and had a total of 2 pancakes leftover.

Man...who took this picture?

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Charred Chili Relleno with Green Rice

This is my first contribution for our monthly challenge this December. Perhaps it's because I don't watch television. It took a while to record some stuff, watch it, and then decide to make it. But here you go. This is a Rachael Ray recipe and it was actually quite delicious. I do recommend the chihuahua cheese that's in the recipe, although you can sub monterrey jack.

DH and I give it two thumbs up. Make sure you get the seeds out though, or you'll be scrambling for ice cream later!

As a side note, the rice was so-so, but the chili relleno was first class.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Chicken Stemperata

I think this is my first Mario Batali recipe to try. I don't remember now what I was searching for when I stumbled onto this one. I love the one pot veggie packed meal idea but I have to say it was nothing special. I can think of a lot better ways to make a chicken stew. I probably wouldn't try this one again. The only thing that kept the meal interesting was the help I received from this little one, a future monthly challenge blogger .....

and, perhaps, the 2006 Mondavi Private Selection Cabernet that I chose with it. It's great if you need a good wine for the holidays.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Perfect Panini

I was trying to find something to use my Krups panini press on and remembered seeing Giada make these a time or two. The recipe doesn't state to use a panini press but it sure was good toasted anyways. I resisted the urge to slap a piece of cheese on it ... surprisingly, it didn't need it. It was nice and creamy as is and the pureed olives made a really nice combination. I wouldn't sub regular black olives ... the kalamatas were perfect for it. Click here for Tuna and Artichoke Paninis.

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

For this soup I used Tyler Florence's Roasted Tomato Soup and Ina Garten's Roasted Tomato Basil Soup as guides for mine. I roasted the tomatoes in the oven. Then I sauteed some onions and simmered both with some chicken stock and seasonings. I pureed the soup in the food processor a small amount at a time and then finished it with some cream.

I served it with a salad.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Me too!

I also made the Jam Thumbprints (center) this weekend, along with Alton Brown's Cocoa Brownies (right) posted by wirrek back in October and Martha Stewart's Chocolate Macaroons (left). I know, Martha's not on the Food Network, but close enough.

And just for sympathy, here's a picture of the half inch of ice on the inside of my living room window from this morning. No one should ever have to experience a wind chill of -26.

Another steal


That isn't the best picture. My camera battery was about to die, and that was the best I can do.

These jam thumbprint cookies were originally posted by Lindsey earlier this month. I felt like trying something new for a cookie party I was going to, and a double recipe of these were perfect. They didn't turn out like I was expecting, but very tasty. I think next time I would keep them in the oven a little longer to get the coconut a little toastier. They were well received and a great Christmas cookie!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Roasted Green-Chile Chicken Enchiladas


So, I finally got my hatch chile peppers. Well, about half of them. I am not going to post the link to the company I order from or anything. That is a mess for another time.

But I did order some hatch chile peppers with the intention of making some kick ass chicken enchiladas with them. Actually, when looking for a recipe, I didn't really see what I was thinking of, but this one by Tyler Florence seemed interesting.

The result: underwhelming. Perhaps it was operator error, I used smaller tortillas and ended up with 2 dishes with a total of 20 enchiladas. The tomatillo sauce was good, but you really lost the flavor of the peppers. On with my quest to find a different enchilada sauce recipe. I have plently of chiles leftover to use up.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Rachel Ray's Beef Stroganoff

Have I posted this one before? I can't remember. This is one of out staples...even the kids like it pretty well! I saw Rachel Ray make this recipe years ago on 30 minute meals and still go back to it!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I don't want to bore you with another squash soup but ...

I'm going to anyways. I think no less than 20 posts have been dedicated to butternut squash soup so I didn't want to expose you to yet another recipe. But, because of my lack of inspiration in the kitchen lately and for fear that I won't have anything interesting to post about this month I will go ahead and say that I tried this Squash Soup recipe but wouldn't recommend it. It's way too sweet with the honey ... although it sounds interesting. I prefer a more savory tasting squash soup. I hate posting things with bad reviews so let me point you to another Food Network favorite of mine especially during this time of year ... Paula Deen's Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cakes, which I have not made this season yet but hope to have a reason to.

Cheese Muffins by Paula Deen

We love to have soups when the weather turns cold, but I got tired of serving crackers or sandwiches along with them.

This is a great and easy and tasty recipe for cheese muffins. Another plus for me, is that I almost always have all these ingredients on hand - So no special trip to the grocery store. We usually serve them with potato soup. If you have leftovers, and we always do, the are great reheated for breakfast!

1 1/2 c all purpose flour
1 T sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Sift together the above ingredients.

Add 3 cups coarsely grated cheddar cheese ( I sometimes add a little extra). Stir until all the pieces of cheese are coated with the flour mixture.

In a separate bowl, combine 1 egg and 1 c milk with a whisk or fork.

Stir the wet mixture into the flour mixture just until blended. Then add 1/4 c melted butter and stir just until incorporated.

Bake at 350 degrees in greased muffin tins (I alwasy use Pam spray) for about 20 minutes.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Look familar?


I was browsing the food network site trying to find something to make for this challenge. One of my new favorite shows is Quick Fix Meals with Robin Miller. I was looking at her recipes when I came across the Slow-Cooker Chipotle Lime Chicken Thighs that Robin posted. I had actually made it early in the week, and the picture is from when I served it leftover. (I love leftovers)

This was a pretty good recipe, but I think the fresh avacado is what made it great. I served it over brown rice.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Turkey Bolognese by Giada

I still had some leftover turkey and tried Giada's Turkey Bolognese. I didn't really like it because the turkey was over powering. I love the idea of a pasta with carrots and celery, but this one was not for me. Surprisingly, the kids ate it pretty well...maybe they were just really hungry.

Jam Thumbprint Cookies-Ina Garten

I am at a disadvantage for this challenge because we haven't had cable in 3 years. However, before we gave up this luxury, I saw Ina make these cookies as Christmas gifts for her friends. They are now a part of our Christmas cookie lineup every year, though they would be delicious any time of year. Sorry, no photo, but take my word that they are as beautiful as they are tasty.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Turkey Monte Cristo with Potato Soup

B has been wanting soup and grilled cheese everyday that it has been cold. I decided to try and spice it up a bit. We had some left over turkey so I did a search at foodtv for cooked turkey.

Among the 27 pages of recipe, I found this one for a Turkey Monte Cristo. The sandwich was fun and scrumptious. I could find any cranberry relish to put it, B thought it needed it :)

Then, I wanted to make a potato soup. I have never made one before and, heck, I am pregnant so it is OK that its not the healthiest soup, right? I didn't find one that looked good so I ended up using Potato soup with shrimp and Cheddar corn chowder as guides.

I sauteed the onions and carrots.
Added some butter and flour.
Then added some Chicken Broth and Milk.
Threw in some potatoes and let them cook.
Finished it with some half and half and some cheese.
Need less to say, it was good:)

December Challenge - Food Network!

Is is really December already? How did that happen?

I had a lot of trouble trying to figure out a challenge for this month. Everyone is so busy this time of year, I didn't want to pick something that was too strict, but wanted to experiment with different things (drinks maybe, cookies) so I figured if the challenge was any recipe from the food network, that would give us a lot of options.

So, anything from the Food Network, or Food Network chef, or Food Network chef's cookbook is fair game!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Gambas al Ajillo - Shrimp in Garlic

I thought this recipe sounded interesting. We had a good time with the Tapas. B, the kids and I gathered round the coffee table and had some shrimp appetizers with some bread...Very Fun!!

Notice the bacon-wrapped shrimp. Have you ever been at the grocery store and your husband calls you and says, "Get bacon. I need some bacon." I guess it had been awhile since we had some, but I already had these fun plans for Tapas. I'm flexible, so I threw on some bacon. Everything was good and I served the sauce the shrimp were cooked in for dipping :)

Artichoke Dip

I found this, Delicious Hot Artichoke Dip Recipe Mexican Style, thought it would be good. It was okay...I won't make it again, but wanted you all to know that I was trying:)

Southwest Cooking - Slow Cooker Chipotle-Lime Chicken Thighs

I really don't know the origin of this recipe, my sister sent it to me. But, because it uses a crockpot and chipotle chilies I'm going to declare it an American Southwest recipe. It was really good. The chicken was so incredibly tender and I love crockpot meals that use natural ingredients and don't involve a bunch of cans of stuff. I subbed 1/2 t. Chipotle Chili powder spice for the chipotle and it was the perfect amount for us. Again, I apologize for the lack of pictures. I'm having the hardest time downloading pics off our new digital camera. My goal for next month is to get better about this, but I didn't want to miss an opportunity to share a good find this time. Enjoy!

Slow Cooker Chipotle-Lime Chicken Thighs

1 cup sliced onion
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped carrots
4 pounds skinless chicken thighs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce
1/4 cup lime juice
1 tablespoon minced chipotle chiles in adobo sauce with 1
teaspoon sauce from can
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 avocado, diced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Lime wedges, for garnish

Arrange onion, celery and carrots in bottom of slow cooker.
Season chicken thighs with salt and pepper and arrange over

In a medium bowl, whisk together tomato sauce, lime juice,
chipotle chiles with sauce, and garlic. Pour mixture over

Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 3 to 4
hours. Serve half of the thighs with this meal (topped with
diced avocado and cilantro and garnished with lime wedges)
and reserve remaining thighs for another meal.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Chicken Tamale Casserole


This recipe was recently featured in Cooking Light.

I have been in the market for new casseroles. It is perfect to set up during nap time, then just program the oven to come on right before dinner, so a homemade meal is ready for me when I am ready for it. When I saw this one in the Nov issue, I knew I had to try it. It has NO canned soup, and got great reviews. It is so easy to put together, nothing to chop, just open a few cans...mix together, and taaaadaaa dinner!


I served mine with a guacamole salad. It wasn't as good as my mom's! Mark loved it. He told me to put it on heavy rotation, which shouldn't take long because I have half of most everything leftover.

Beer Margaritas



Mark was out of town all last week, so it was pretty stressful. I had a neighbor over for these margaritas post-bedtime and she brought the chips and queso. I almost hate to admit, that between the two of us, we drank the whole pitcher. These are great for parties, light and refreshing, or for drinking with good friends post-bedtime.

Beer Margaritas

1 can limeaid
1 can coors light (I used 1 bottle miller light, but I think coors gives it better color)
1 cup tequila
1 can sprite

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Frijoles Pintos y Negros Borrachos


I found this recipe on my cookinglight bulletin board. It is favorite with grilled meat, especially with the rub provided on this link. I made it for my parents this past week and I think my dad really liked it. This would be a good one to make with those Rancho Gordo beans...too bad I didn't have any on hand. I like to make this during naptime and the just reheat it for dinner. I am not sure what country this comes from, but the name sounds hispanic!

Frijoles Pintos y Negros Borrachos

1 Tablespoon Oil
1/2 onion, finely diced
1 bunch green onions, minced
2 Romas, chopped
1 14 oz can pintos, rinsed
1 14 oz can black beans, rinsed
1 jalapeno
1/2 cup beer
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped

Heat the oil in a roomy skillet or saucepan over fairly high heat. Add both onions and saute slightly. Add roma tomatoes, saute another minute. Add beans, chile, beer and cilantro, lower the heat, and simmer for 15-30 minutes. Season with salt.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Citrus, Rum, and Adobo Grilled Shrimp with Peppered Rice

I thought we should move along from Mexico and explore cuisine of another Spanish-speaking country so I looked through some recipes I had clipped out from long ago and found this recipe on a Visit Puerto Rico advertisement. It's really simple and the Shrimp turned out incredible. The rice was ok ... nothing special but used long grain brown rice and probably shouldn't have. I took a picture ... I'll upload it later.

Citrus, Rum and Adobo Grilled Shrimp

zest and juice of 1 orange
zest and juice of 1 lime
1 t. sugar
1/4 c. vegetable oil
1/4 c. dark Puerto Rican rum (I used Bacardi Select)
4 garlic cloves, chopped
2 T. fresh oregano (I used 1 t. dried)
2 t. coarse salt
1/4 t. ground black pepper
2 lbs. large shrimp, peeled and deveined

Combine all ingredients except shrimp in a large bowl. Add shrimp and marinate 30 min. Heat grill. Thread shrimp on metal skewers. Grill 3 minutes per side.

Peppered Rice

1 T. annatto oil (I couldn't find this so I subbed olive oil)
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 yellow bell pepper, finely chopped
1 minced clove garlic
1 c. long-grain rice
1 T. finely chopped cilantro
1 t. coarse salt
1/4 t. freshly ground black pepper

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, peppers and garlic; stir 2 min. Add rice, salt and 3 cups water. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to low. Cook 18 min. or until rice is tender. Remove from heat; uncover and drape a clean kitchen cloth over the pan for 3 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork, and add cilantro. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Traditional Mexican Chicken Enchiladas recipe

Also found this recipe when I did a search for Mexican recipes. It near the bottom of the page

We had B's parents over for dinner so I could try this recipe. Luckily it turned out well, even the kiddos ate it up:) The enchiladas part is pretty normal. The sauce is a roue with butter, flour, chicken broth, green chilies and sour cream. We will be revisiting this dish with some improvements.

Mexican Corn

I searched for a vegetable side dish and it turns out their aren't many out there:) This recipe for Mexican Corn is GREAT! I made homemade Picante Salsa to go with it as Robin suggested. The salsa was less runny and I made it with tomatoes instead of the canned. I think that I will definitely make this again to go with any meal.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Creamy Caramel Flan

I did a search for "Mexican recipes dessert" and this Creamy Caramel Flan was one that got pretty good reviews.

To start, you have to turn the sugar into a delicious caramel. This is the sugar after FOREVER and it is not quite melted yet.

The caramelized sugar glazes the bottom of a pan followed by all the creamy ingredients. The pan is placed on a towel in a boiling hot water bath...carefully placed into the oven.

After the flan is cooled and set in the fridge, the next day you have a creamy Mexican dessert. The sugar turns into a runny sauce after being cooked and cooled.

See, its really runny. Anyways, it was okay. I didn't love it...especially the second time :( BUT B like it. I am glad I tried it.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Cheese Enchiladas with Easy Mole Sauce


Don't you just hate it when you pick the monthly challenge, and then forget to make anything under that topic. Anyways...

I actually made these last month, but was looking for an excuse to share the recipe. You will notice that the recipe makes 8 servings, so when I made it, I divided it into 2 dishes, froze one and ate it tonight for dinner. YUM! I am not sure how authentic it is, and when you read the ingredients you have a similar reaction to the first time you made Thai Chicken. "What?!? Peanut Butter? Really?" But it works. Although I am sure it is easier than a real mole sauce, it still takes awhile to put together. Next time I make these, I may back off the chile powder a bit. I liked the amount of spice, but I served it with a dollup of sour creamm


Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
Mole Sauce
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
2 onions -- chopped (about 2 cups)
2 cloves garlic -- minced (about 2 tsp.)
1/4 cup chili powder
2 Tbs. light brown sugar
3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ancho chile powder
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1 can diced tomatoes -- (15.5-oz.)
3 Tbs. cocoa powder
3 Tbs. peanut butter
12 oz. light Monterey Jack cheese -- shredded (about 3 cups)
16 flour tortillas -- (8-inch)

To make Mole Sauce: Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onions, and cook 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until browned. Stir in garlic, chili powder, brown sugar, cinnamon, ancho chile powder and ground cloves, and cook 1 minute, or until fragrant, stirring constantly.

Add tomatoes, cocoa, peanut butter and 2 cups water. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

To make Enchiladas: Preheat oven to 350F. Ladle 3/4 cup Mole Sauce into bottoms of 2 12x8-inch ovenproof baking dishes. Place about 21/2 Tbs. cheese in center of each tortilla. Roll tortilla around cheese, and set seam side down on top of mole sauce, placing 8 filled tortillas in each pan. Top each dish with 11/4 cups mole, and sprinkle each with 1/3 cup cheese. Bake 20 minutes, or until sauce bubbles and cheese melts.

"Vegetarian Times"
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 576 Calories; 18g Fat (27.4% calories from fat); 15g Protein; 90g Carbohydrate; 8g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 759mg Sodium. Exchanges: 5 1/2 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 3 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Smoky-Spicy Tamale Pies

I made this recipe about two weeks ago and it was a huge hit. It was filling and delicious, although the link is a recipe for only two people. I doubled it, but then it turned out to be a ton of food, so I'm not sure. My crust was pretty think, so next time I would reduce the crust portion just a little bit. Also, I made mine in a 9x13 casserole dish instead of individual portions.

Great flavor, nutritious, and easy.

Smoky-Spicy Tamale Pies

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Butternut Squash, Corn, and Cheese Enchiladas with Tomatillo-Green Chili Sauce

Wow ... what a long recipe title. The original recipe was only Cheese Enchiladas with Tomatillo-Green Chili Sauce from Bon Appetit. I had the idea of adding squash and corn after my first recent visit to a great Scottsdale restaurant called, The Herb Box, where I had something similar. Overall this was pretty good. It wasn't something that I would crave and make over and over. I got a lot of satisfaction out of learning how to make my own green sauce from fresh ingredients ... I just am more of a red enchilada sauce fan. But, it was fun to try to venture off from the normal recipe and use my imagination.

Serves 4:
3/4 lb. tomatillos, husked, quartered
1 1/4 c. water
2 T. minced, seeded jalapeno chilies (about 1 large)
12 garlic cloves
2 1/2 c. chopped green onions (about a whole bunch)
3/4 c mild green chilies (I used Trader Joe's Hatch green chilies in the can ... great!)
12 large spinach leaves
8 corn tortillas
3 c. Monterey Jack cheese (about 12 oz)

My additions: cooked cubed butternut squash and canned corn

To make the green sauce: Bring first 4 ingredients to boil in large skillet. Reduce heat to med-low, cover, simmer until tomatillos are soft, about 15 min. Transfer mixture to blender; add 2 cups green onions, green chilies, and spinach; puree. Season salt with salt (1/2 t. is a good starting place) and pepper. Return sauce to skillet.

Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly oil 13x9x2 glass baking dish. Dip 1 tortilla into sauce. Place tortilla on plate. Top with 2 T. Cheese, 1 T. green onion, 1 T. sauce and butternut squash and corn (if using). Roll up and place seam side down in prepared dish. Repeat with remaining tortillas. Pour remaining sauce over enchiladas and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake until cheese melts, about 15-20 minutes.

Salsa Fresca

We were suppose to go to Chuy's this weekend, but it was too crowded. I was disappointed because I love their Salsa Fresca. I decided to try and make my own and used this Salsa Fresca recipe from Tyler Florence. I made two batches. I felt the first batch was too runny, so I tried squeezing the tomatoes out for the second batch. No luck...

First batch...

Second batch...

I would definitely add the entire jalapeno because both batches were not hot enough. Go easy on the salt and B said "more garlic!"

Saturday, November 1, 2008

November Fiesta Challenge

I gave Mark 3 choices and this is what he picked. That's right, it is a "fiesta challenge"! Now, you can interpret that as Tex-Mex, Mexican, Southwestern, but let's go ahead and expand that to all Spanish speaking countries. Any food that is inspired from one of these countries is fair game! It should be a nice break from the traditional Thanksgiving type fare.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Butterfinger Brownies

We got this recipe from a girl I used to coach in soccer. She is a fabulous baker!! She now plays for TCU and makes her teammates lots of yummy treats. The Butterfingers really does add something special!

1 pkg brownie mix made according to box
1 king size Butterfingers or 5 "fun size" Butterfingers if it is Halloween time:) crushed

Two minutes before the brownies are done, remove brownies and sprinkle with Butterfingers. Put back in oven for remaining 2 minutes. Allow to cool and enjoy with milk!

A quick taste of Thai?

So, I really did take this month's challenge to heart and thought it was a great idea!! I have seen these at the HEB, but never had an excuse to get one. This month, I had two reasons...the challenge and I am pregnant. Now, it was pretty tasty for noodles made in a box, but it was not really coconutty or gingery. I will probably try another flavor because that's the kinda girl I am.

Sherry...from the liquor store.

When cooking with Sherry or Marsala, you gotta go with the stuff from the liquor store, NOT the grocery store. They have significantly better flavor. While my mom was in town a number of weeks ago, I made the easy cheesy fondue from Rachel Ray that I had made previously because it really tastes better with good sherry!!

Best Laid Plans

It's hatch chile season, and I used this challenge as an excuse to order some online. Just so you know, it is pretty difficult to find these chiles for a decent price. Even more difficult, it is hard to find these chiles in smaller amounts. I finally found a website that did offer them, and was looking forward to receive my chiles end of September.

So, a month later, still no chiles. I have talked to the company and they have just been overwhelmed with orders (probably because of the reasons listed above). I had hoped to make chile rellenos and/or green enchilada sauce. Oh well, maybe next month.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Product: Jiff's extra crunchy peanut butter


I really prefer smooth peanut butter myself, but the extra crunchy kind is really good in peanut butter cookies. The best peanut butter cookie recipe that I have found is from Cook's Illustrated, and it recommends the Jiff brand. This one will be in your Kerri's Greatest Hits cookbook, or you can find it here.

I am off to eat a few more right now...YUM!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Tasty Bite - Jaipur Vegetables

Ok, first of all I don't think I bought this at Trader Joes. I believe I bought it at another specialty grocery store, called Sprouts. The brand name is Tasty Bite. The dish is cubes of paneer cheese, with vegetables and cashews in a creamy curry sauce. I did not have high hopes for this meal. I thought it would be ok at best or absolutely horrible. It was actually pretty darn good. The only thing I beg to differ on is the portion size. The package says it is for two but if you have two adults especially if a man is one of them, you may find yourself fighting over the last bit. This is the ingredient list: water, tomatoes, potatoes, green peas, carrots, paneer cheese, french beans, cashew nuts, onions, oil, raisins, cream, salt, chilies, ginger, garlic, herbs and spices. I love it ... nothing unpronounceable ... no partially hydrogenated anything. And, on the back it says it can be used as meals for hiking and camping ... no cooking or refrigeration is required until the foil pouch is opened. It was a good find especially on those nights where you may be cooking for one.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Go old trusty Trader Joes

Are you sick of all my Trader Joe posts? Well, I have one more. This Trader Joe's Chai drink was so good. I subbed warm milk for water. I think it's official ... with all these great products I'm a Trader Joe's convert!

Trader Joe's Chicken-Less Strips

Wow, these are so tasty I might consider becoming a vegetarian full time! Honestly, I don't think people would be able to tell the difference between this and chicken if you served it to them. The light seasoning is really good. I topped a large green salad with these strips, feta, and a balsamic vinigarette.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

This one goes out to Mark

It occurred to me as I was watching Sunday football that my Simpler Times beer would make a good product challenge. This is also something I picked up at Trader Joes the other day. It is a family owned brewery that specializes in Pilsener and Lager beers. This one is the Pils. It was nice, light and smooth ...everything I like about a Pilsener. Not as good as Mark's homebrew but maybe the next best thing. I would get it again.

Trader Ming's Vegetable Shu Mai

I have some apologizing to do and some catching up to do! Sorry, I have been missing for this challenge. We are moving into a new home (finally) and I forgot how much work home ownership is! We haven't been venturing out lately. Phoenix has some great supermarkets ... among them my most recent find Trader Joe's. I really didn't know what to get here so I started by getting a few things off their most recent flyer. Here is a frozen product that we tried, vegetable dumplings. They were great and the ponzu sauce that comes with them was unbelievable. Mine don't have that browned look, which I think they get by pan frying near the end of cooking time.