Archive for the ‘Dinner’ Category

Butternut Squash Risotto

March 14, 2011

I am constantly sifting through my magazines to find this recipe.  Time to put it here, so I can actually find it.  This has become a favorite in our house.

3 c. butternut squash, peeled and diced

olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

4 c. low sodium chicken broth

1/2 c onion, diced

8 oz mushrooms, sliced (2 cups)

1 T garlic, minced

1 c. arborio rice

1 T fresh thyme leaves

1 T fresh sage, minced

1/2 c frozen peas, thawed

1/4 c. shredded fontina or parmesan cheese

2 T chopped walnuts, toasted

Preheat oven to 425*. Toss squash with a little olive oil and season with salt andpepper.  Spread in an even layer on a baking sheet.  Bake until tender, about 25 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. 

Meanwhile, bring broth to a simmer in a sauce pan over medium heat, keep warm.

While broth is heating, sautee onion in 1T olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat for 3 minutes. Add mushrooms and sautee until they start to soften, 5 minutes.  Add garlic and sautee for one more minute.  Add rice and stir to coat with oil and veggies.

Add 1/2 c warm broth, simmer and stir until liquid evaporates. Stir in another 1/2 c of broth, simmer, stir occasionally until almost evaporated.  Continue adding broth in 1/2 c. increments, adding more after previous addition has been absorbed.  Rice is done when its tender but still slightly firm and white in the very center and not chalky.  Add all but last 1/2 c of broth.

Add thyme, sage, peasse and cheese to pan with last 1/2 c of broth.  Stir until cheese melts, 1 to 2 minutes.  Remove pan from heat.  Gently fold in cooked squash and nuts.  Season with salt and pepper.  Serve warm.


Stuffed Bell Peppers

June 21, 2010

When we ran into some big bell peppers at the farmers market last week 3 for $1 I knew stuffed bell peppers were in our future.  I hadn’t actually ever made them before so I made up the recipe and it turned out pretty well.  Since I made it up and wasn’t measuring I don’t have exact quantities on the ingredients.

saute onion, garlic, and carrots (other veggies too if you are adding any) in a skillet with very little olive oil

brown ground turkey in a separate pan, drain and rinse well

combine veggies with turkey, add some tomato sauce and salsa or hot sauce and cook until sauce thickens up a bit.  Add cooked brown rice to mixture.

Gut out bell peppers and add mixture.  Replace tops.  Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.

Whole Wheat Pizza Dough

June 20, 2010

It is Saturday and we wanted a treat.  Pizza isn’t in our normal repertoire these days so we thought it would be fun.  We loaded with  veggies and went light on the cheese.  We are also completely addicted to Hormel turkey pepperoni and think it could almost be considered healthy!

  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 t. italian seasoning

Put the ingredients in the bread machine on the dough setting.  Roll out crust and pre-cook the crust for 5 min at 500 degrees. Then add toppings and cook for an additional 14 minutes at 425.

Sweet & Sour Chicken

June 15, 2010

original recipe from Clean Eating with adjustments by me

1/3 c. low sodium soy sauce

2 T honey

1 tsp fresh grated ginger

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1 1/4 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, chopped into chunks

1 large bell pepper, chopped into chunks

1 small onion, chunked

1/2 a can of chunked pineapple

Whisk together first 5 ingredients and heat in a skillet.  Add chicken and cook through.  Add vegetables and cook until tender.  Drain juices into a small saucepot and thicken with cornstarch (original sauce was too thin).  Serve 1 1/4 c. chicken mixture over 1/2 c. of brown rice.

In 1 1/4c. of chicken mixture there are 161 calories, 1.5g fat, 17g carbs, 21g protein

Vegetable Casserole

June 10, 2010

This was really yummy.  It was a great way to use the garden vegetables that were spilling all over our counters.  James found this at I believe.  We really can’t figure out why it is called “Mexican”- hot sauce, cheddar cheese?  Who knows.  We did cut back on the cheese that we put in the casserole and did not sprinkle any on top and it was still yummy.  Next time I will probably try and add more herbs of some sort.  Oh and several dashes of hot sauce to James meant 20.  It was pretty spicy, but doesn’t have to be.


1 1/2 c. fresh or frozen whole kernel corn
1/2 c. chopped onion
1/2 c. chopped green pepper
1/2 c. water
1 c. each yellow summer squash & zucchini
1 lg. tomato, chopped
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
2/3 c. cornmeal
1/2 c. milk
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
Several dashes bottled hot pepper sauce
In medium saucepan combine corn, onion, green pepper and water. Bring to boiling, reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender crisp. DO NOT DRAIN. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, combine chopped squash, tomato, 3/4 cup cheese, cornmeal, milk, eggs, salt, pepper and pepper sauce. Add undrained vegetables to cornmeal mixture; mix well. Turn into 1 1/2 quart casserole. Bake, uncovered in a 350 degree oven 45 to 50 minutes or until done. Top with remaining cheese and return to oven until melted only. Yield: 8 servings. Only 160 calories per serving.

Chicken Lime Tortilla Soup

April 26, 2010

The original recipe comes from here.  After I started getting ready I realized that I was completely out of canned diced tomatoes.  We substituted with a can of tomato sauce, a few fresh tomatoes, and a can of diced green chilies.  I also had some mushrooms that I needed to use so I threw them in too.  Next time I will play with the seasonings a bit more.

4 chicken breasts, cooked & cubed/shredded
1 onion, diced
16 oz. can of diced tomatoes
10 oz. can tomatoes with diced green chilis (RoTel)
8 c. water
3 (16 oz.) cans hominy, drained
6 chicken bouillon cubes
salt to taste
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
Monterey Jack cheese
tortilla chips

Saute onion in a little butter.
Add the rest of ingredients & simmer for about an hour.
Serve over crushed chips, squeeze 1/2 lime over each bowl & top with cheese.
(the lime is a MUST–it makes the soup!)

Veggie Potato Quiche

April 15, 2010

I got this from who got it from  It is a great way to get in tons of veggies and protein.  We ate the leftovers for breakfast for a few days.  I think it would a fabulous addition to a brunch buffet.

Veggie Quiché with Potato Crust
or Eggie Cake
adapted from For the Love of

2 red potatoes, sliced very thin
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 sweet onion
1 , diced
1 cup of fresh spinach, diced
1 cup of shredded carrots
1 tomato, diced
1/4 cup reduced fat feta cheese
6-7 leaves of fresh basil, chopped (I just sprinkled mine on)
4 eggs
8 egg whites (or 2 cups of Egg Scramblers)
1/4 cup skim milk
sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat pie dish with cooking spray. Layer and overlap thin slices of potato on the bottom of pan. Bake in oven for 10 minutes, then remove from oven.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Saute the onions for 3-4 minutes, then add carrots, zucchini and spinach for another 4-5 minutes or so. Remove from heat.

Sprinkle the diced tomato, basil and half of the feta cheese over potatoes. Then layer on the cooked veggies. Beat the eggs with milk and season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the egg mixture on top of the veggies and top with the remaining feta cheese.

Cook for 40 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean.  Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before slicing.

Sour Cream Pork Chops

September 4, 2009
  • 6 pork chops
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • garlic powder to taste
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 large onion, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 2 cubes chicken bouillon
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 (8 ounce) container sour cream
  1. Season pork chops with salt, pepper, and garlic powder, and then dredge in 1/2 cup flour. In a skillet over medium heat, lightly brown chops in a small amount of oil.
  2. Place chops in slow cooker, and top with onion slices. Dissolve bouillon cubes in boiling water and pour over chops. Cover, and cook on Low 7 to 8 hours.
  3. Remove chops from cooker.
  4. In a small bowl, blend 2 tablespoons flour with the sour cream; mix into meat juices. Turn slow cooker to High for 15 to 30 minutes, or until sauce is slightly thickened. Serve sauce over pork chops.

Buffalo Wings

September 4, 2009

James asked me to help him make some buffalo wings for a football party that he was going to.  I had no clue how to make them and I think I have only tried them once or twice.  I was surprised to find out that they are normally fried.  I try to stay away from frying so I searched for a recipe that didn’t require it.  This one was a hit.

I also went the easy route and did small drumstick instead of wings.  You don’t have to worry about trimming the wings and there is more meat on each piece.
2 lbs chicken wings (about 12 wings)
3 Tbsp butter, melted
4 Tbsp bottled hot pepper sauce (like Crystal or Frank’s Original)
1 Tbsp paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Create a marinade by stirring together the melted butter, hot pepper sauce, paprika, salt, cayenne pepper and black pepper. Pour all but 2 tablespoons of the marinade over the chicken pieces in the plastic bag. (Reserve marinade for coating after the pieces come out of the oven.) Seal bag and let marinate at room temperature for half an hour. When marinating is finished, drain marinade and discard bag.

Broil wings 4 to 5 inches from the heat for about 10 minutes on each side, until chicken is tender and no longer pink. Remove from oven and baste with reserved marinade.

Serve with Ranch or Blue Cheese dressing and celery sticks.

Chunky Pasta Sauce

June 11, 2009

This recipe started off as one thing and turned into something completely different.  I have been trying to find more ways to get vegetables into our menus.  The plan was to serve this with turkey meatballs over pasta with homemade french bread on the side.  When James got home he suggested that we just fore go the pasta and use the french bread to sop up the extra sauce.  It was a good idea.  The sauce was thick enough that it didn’t run all over the plate.

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, chopped into coins
  • 1 cup frozen chopped spinach
  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
  • 3/4 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

Saute garlic and onions in olive oil until opaque.  Add carrots and all spices and continue to saute.  Add tomatoes and spinach and bring to a boil.  Cover and reduce to a simmer for 1 hour.