Friday, August 29, 2008
So I hope you enjoy her recipe and keep on cookin cowgirls!
Chicken Cacciatore was a family staple in our house growing up. The smells it sends through the house are right up there with chocolate chip cookies baking in the oven. This was my favorite meal growing up and now I share it with my own family. It is best on a crisp fall day or cold winter evening. This recipe is one that has been passed down over the years from generations who didn’t rely on recipes, so go with your senses when cooking! Serve with a good bottle of red wine, a small salad, and a good loaf of crusty French bread and you’ll have yourself a great meal . . . Buon Appetito!
Skinless chicken pieces (you can do bone-in or boneless – I think the bone adds more flavor to the sauce – I normally cook six to eight pieces, but you can adjust everything for the size of your crowd! However, make sure you don’t crowd the chicken in the pan as you will want it to brown – if they are too crowded they will just steam.)
Fill a plastic bag with flour and salt and pepper to taste. Add chicken and shake – to coat all chicken pieces.
In a large fry pan add 2-3 tbls. olive oil and equal amount butter (if you need more, add more olive oil – not butter)
Once the pan is heated, add chicken to the pan brown on both sides. Add sauce and simmer (the longer the better – the meat should be so tender it begins to pull away from the bone!)
Sauce (adjust accordingly if you use more chicken):
1 can chopped tomatoes
½ cup chicken broth
Chopped up celery (2-3 stalks)
parsley (a small bunch)
5-6 cloves garlic
1 bay leaf, basil (1 tsp. or so)
rosemary (a couple branches chopped or 1 tsp. dried or so)
4-5 sliced mushrooms
1/3 – ¼ cup red wine (don’t worry for kids, the alcohol cooks out)
salt and pepper to taste
After simmering for 1 hour or so, if you feel the sauce is too liquid add tomato paste. Let simmer (not too high) until the chicken is tender. Serve with lots of sauce on top to soak up with the French bread!
*For children who can’t yet chew, this makes a great puree!
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Mango Iced Tea
4 cups boiling water
3 Lipton Tea Bags
3 Lipton Mango Tea Bags
Boil water and pour into a 4 cup measuring cup or pitcher. Add the tea bags and let steep for 10 minutes. Either pull the tea bags out or leave them in after your first pour (I leave them in because I love strong tea and more caffeine gets in there too!) Take a great big glass and fill to the brim with ice. Pour tea over ice and let sit for a minute to get nice and cold. Delicious!
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Rookie Cookie Shake
3 Oreo cookies
1/4 cup of whole milk (more depending on how thick or thin you like your shake)
6 scoops of chocolate ice cream (more or less depending on the consistency you like)
Couple of squirts of chocolate syrup
Put all ingredients into a blender and blend. It was hard to come up with an exact recipe on this one since we all like our milkshakes different consistencies. Just keep adding more milk a little at a time if it is too thick, or add more ice cream if it is too thin. Keep tasting to add more cookies or chocolate syrup to boost up the flavor more if necessary! All in all, a delicious treat!
Monday, August 25, 2008
Dairy Free/Egg Free French Toast
Dairy Free Wheat Bread - I like wheat because it's healthier. I love Sara Lee products because they are so great with their labeling and also make quite a bit of their products without milk. Read your labels people!
1/2 - 1 whole banana
soy milk or vanilla soy milk- no measurements available. I just eye it.
1 tablespoon of dairy free margarine - I use Nucoa.
Topping: Cinnamon; dairy free maple syrup; powdered sugar
Grab out your food processor or blender. Slice up the banana and throw it into the processor along with a little bit of the soy milk. You will have to experiment with this to find the right consistency. Puree away until the bananas and soy milk are well combined. You are looking for a close consistency of regular french toast batter that is made with eggs and milk. Keep trying until you get it close. If you don't have a food processor or a blender, you can use a fork or a mixer. Once that is done, put the tablespoon of margarine on your grill pan or fry pan and melt it. Dip your pieces of bread into mixture and onto the pan. Keep an eye on your bread, you don't want to burn it. Pull it off, sprinkle some cinnamon, dairy-free maple syrup or powdered sugar and dig in.
Friday, August 22, 2008
1 liter of Sprite (or any lemon-lime soda)
1 frozen can of cranberry juice, do not mix with water! (if it is a cranberry blend of sorts, that works too)
1 carton of pulp free orange juice (I love Simply Orange in this)
1. Mix all together and enjoy! If you wanted to spice up your party a bit, a jigger (shot) or two of vodka in here would be divine! Hmmm...maybe I will go make some now, ha! :)
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Easy Dairy Free Frosting
1 box of powdered sugar
1/4 cup of soy milk or vanilla soy milk depending on how sweet you want it
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 stick of dairy free margarine (I love Nucoa. My daughter Scout loves the taste of it. It's dairy free and usually the cheapest margarine at the grocery store, wahoo!)
Beat with mixer for about 2 minutes, scraping bowl often. If you want it thinner make sure to add a little more soy milk. It is enough to frost one 8 inch layer cake.
If you want chocolate add 1/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder and beat an extra minute.
*Allergy Tip: One important piece of advice that I have learned when shopping for your allergy free items is: Not To Assume Anything. Always read labels! Even if you have bought the product 1,000 times and just know it has nothing in it that you are allergic to. Do yourself a favor and read it 1,001. Products frequently have ingredient changes and will really come to surprise you sometimes. I have had this happen on more then one occasion and it is never a pleasant surprise. So be sure to always read your labels!
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Baked Artichoke Cheese Dip in a Sourdough Bread Bowl
1 sourdough round, top cut off (save!) and hollowed out
2/3 can (15 oz.) artichokes, chopped
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 garlic clove, chopped finely
1 cup mayonnaise (check for Deb's future post on homeade mayo for those of you allergic to this stuff.)
1 cup shredded jack cheese
1/4 small onion, chopped finely
1 cup grated Parmensan cheese
1. Mix all ingredents together and put into the hollowed out sourdough bread. Put lid back on.
2. If making the day ahead, cover with plastic wrap and put in refrigerator. Take out about 30 minutes prior to baking to give it a chance to get to room temperature.
3. Bake with lid on for 1 hour 20 minutes at 350 degrees.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
CABBAGE SALAD OR GREEN SALAD
Melt the butter/margarine in a skillet and brown together - first the sesame seeds and almonds, then add the noodles.
1/2 cup butter/margarine (1 block but I usually use a little less)
2 packages Ramen noodles crushed
1/2 cup sesame seeds ( I use about half of this)
2 handfuls slivered almonds
1 head cabbage, shredded
2 stalks green onions, chopped (optional)
optional - try adding some dark leafy lettuce, looks pretty.
I don't see why you couldn't add a little bit of red cabbage for color.
DRESSING / SAUCE
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tbsp. soy sauce
1/4 cup sugar (I usually use a little less)
dash of pepper
Monday, August 18, 2008
Baked Ziti with Red & Cream Sauce
For Cream Sauce:
1 Tbls. Butter
1 ½ cups heavy cream
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 jar marinara sauce (Big fan of Golden Grain marinara)
16 oz. package of ziti noodles (or any tubular noodle)
1 lb. ground beef
2 cups mozzarella cheese
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ cups bread crumbs (take French bread you are going to use for dinner and place in a food processor until it resembles breadcrumbs)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Boil pasta in water, follow directions on package.
2. Make the cream sauce. First heat butter and heavy cream in a saucepan. Stir frequently. When the mixture starts to bubble, stir in the Parmesan cheese. Reduce heat and cook for 3 minutes, stirring often. Set aside.
3. Brown the ground beef until no longer pink, add salt and pepper while it is browning. After beef is cooked, add marinara sauce. Stir together and let simmer for a few minutes.
4. Put cooked noodles, cream sauce, red sauce and mozzarella together in the pan and mix together. Sprinkle the top with breadcrumbs and Parmesan. Bake 20 minutes, until bubbling. Broil for 3 minutes until top is golden brown.
Simply put into food processor to mash or puree. Add a bit more marinara sauce or water if needed to thin out puree.
Friday, August 15, 2008
3pkgs of Tofutti "Better Than Cream Cheese"
1 cup sweetener (i.e. sugar)
Juice of 1 lemon
1Tbsp. vanilla extract
Blend all ingredients well. Pour/spoon into a ready made or home made graham cracker crust.
*(the ready made Keebler graham cracker crusts sold at any major super market are vegan - no kidding)
Bake for 40 minutes at 350 degrees until top starts to brown. Cool and refrigerate until completely cold.
(An interesting side note about the creator of this recipe. He is a former hunter and primate researcher turned vegan and animal rights advocate. The 1987 film "Project X" starring Mathew Broderick and Helen Hunt was based upon experiments he was involved in before denouncing such experiments and going public with the information.)
Thank you Monica for sending us several vegan recipes. We will be posting all of them on Cowgirls and Cupcakes over the next few weeks. So many people are choosing to eat vegan as well as vegetarian these days that it is nice to have some great recipes. I also love getting vegan recipes for my youngest daughter Scout. She is highly allergic to milk and eggs and vegan recipes are fantastic for her to chow down on.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
A batch of your best spaghetti sauce - if you are in a hurry like me, use a jar of Ragu!
A box of manicotti noodles
1/2 pound mozzarella (8 oz)
3/4 cup cottage cheese
2 slightly beaten eggs
2 tbsp. of Parmesan
1/4 tsp. salt and pepper
Cook your spaghetti sauce and set aside. Pull out a 9 x 13 baking pan and put about a full cup of spaghetti sauce in bottom of pan. Make sure you move it around making sure a small amount is disbursed throughout most of the pan. Then the fun begins... In mixing bowl combine the mozzarella and next four ingredients. Next, open manicotti noodles. You will not need to boil the noodles on this recipe, the magic happens with the sauce and the foil. Wash up your hands and then dive into the goo and begin stuffing each noodle with mixture from the mixing bowl. I used to try to do this neatly, but you just have to get your hands messy on this one, sorry. Set each noodle in pan leaving about an inch or so in between each one. This allows for some growing room when they cook. Lastly, you will pour the remaining sauce over all the stuffed noodles in the pan. You want to make sure that all of them are well covered. Since these noodles have not been boiled, they will be dependent on the heat and the steam of the sauce to cook them up nicely. Make sure to cover with foil (if you don't cover it, that steam won't cook your noodles) and pop it into the oven for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve it with some sourdough bread from your local bakery and a green salad and of course some wine! Let me know how they come out.
Your Cowgirl in Waiting
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Easy Cheesy Baked Ziti
3/4 box of ziti noodles, cooked and drained
1 jar of marinara sauce (I like Golden Grain)
1 bag of shredded mozzarella (2-4 cups worth depending on how cheesy you want it!)
1 pound ground beef
1. Boil water for noodles and cook according to directions. Drain and set aside.
2. Put beef in large pan. Start crumbling and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook until there is no more pink.
3. Drain fat, then add marinara sauce. Stir and simmer for a few minutes more.
4. Mix in pasta noodles and cheese into the same pan as your beef sauce. Reserve some cheese to sprinkle on top of the casserole. Dump mixture into a 13x9 pan, spread evenly. Top with remaining cheese.
5. Place into preheated 350 degree oven and bake uncovered for 30 minutes. Cheese on top will be nice and melty!
To puree this meal, simply place into a food processor. Sometimes the cheese makes it very sticky and clumpy, if this is the case add a little more marinara sauce if you have extra, or water, or chicken broth, or beef broth. Just add enough to get the consistency you want. The broths will give more flavor to the meal than water. The good thing is even if you use a little of the broth can it will keep in the refrigerator for about a week so you could use if for many more meals.
To mash this meal, simply place into food processor and give it a couple of whirls.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Some very exciting news: it's our first official entry for Cowgirls and Cupcakes from someone other than Kim or myself. So cool! A huge "Thank You" to Hatfield Systems for being our first entry. If you are looking for reliable and affordable computer consulting services in Sacramento and Placer county, please check out Hatfield Systems at: http://hatfieldsystems.com/
Enough noodles for 4 people
2 cans tomato sauce
5-10 mushrooms cut into 4 slices each (more slices for less chunky, less slices for more chunky)
1 tomato (sliced and diced)
2 teaspoons sliced garlic
1 pound ground meat
1 package Italian seasoning
Brown meat on medium to high heat
Drain meat juice (this is all fat anyway)
Add tomato sauce, mushrooms, tomato, garlic, Italian seasoning
Set heat on low & cover
Let simmer for minimum of half hour, stirring every 5-6 minutes.
Once meat has been simmering for 15 minutes, cook noodles until they are soft, but not too much to make the noodles rubbery. (Follow directions on the box)
Serve hot with French Bread, salad, and Parmesan cheese and you’re ready to get full!
Monday, August 11, 2008
2 brown baking potatoes
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 Tbls. vegetable oil
salt & pepper to taste
1. Chop onion and garlic. Put these into a heated, large skillet with about 1 Tbls. of oil in it. Saute until a nice golden brown. Turn off heat when they reach this.
2. While onions and garlic are sauteing, chop potatoes into cubes (the smaller they are the faster they cook). I usually chop them into about 1/2" cubes. Leave the peel on. Put them into a dish that is microwave safe with a lid or use plastic wrap to cover them. Before putting on the lid or plastic wrap, season with salt and pepper and the Tablespoon of oil. Stir well. Cover them up and place in microwave for 4 minutes. Take out, stir and microwave for another 3-4 minutes. (All of these times may vary due to the strength of your microwave, but basically just want to cook them until they are soft all the way through. It won't take long for you to figure out how many minutes it takes for your microwave to cook them all the way through.)
3. Take cooked potatoes and dump them into the skillet with the onions and garlic. Turn heat back on to med/low and stir while cooking for a few minutes more. Basically you want the two to meld together for a little bit. Turn off the heat and serve.
4. *Options* Here are some ways you can change these up...
*Sprinkle cheese on top of the cooked potatoes.
*Add crumbled bacon to them w/ or w/o the cheese.
*While cooking the potatoes in step 3, add a raw egg that has
been slightly scrambled. Mix together and it will cook quickly.
*Do a combination of all three.
*For my daughter, I usually skip the garlic and onions and just
cook the potatoes in the microwave for her, then top with
*Sprinkle with a little bit of wheat germ to give an invisible,
tasteless protien and vitamin boost.
This is a great way to introduce cubes to your child/baby. I simply detach the skin on the potatoes after they are done cooking and either mash the cube a little bit or cut it into smaller cubes for my son. They are soft enough that they are easily chewed. Do have a drink nearby in case of choking/gagging. The potatoes are soft, however are not very slimy so are not easily swallowed.
Friday, August 8, 2008
I am trying to find what the substitution is for shortening to butter. Unfortunately, I cannot indulge in the greasy white stuff anymore due to my soy allergy and have to go back for the butter. In all of my research, I have not yet found a good solution to this. I think it will have to be through trial and error. If anyone knows a good substitution amount for these two, please leave us a comment and let us know.
Dama Margie's Ginger Snaps
3/4 c. shortening
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 c. molasses (Oh, how I love these ooey-gooey molasses)
2 -1/4 c. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. cloves
1/4 tsp. salt
Cream the first four ingredients together with mixer. I love my Kitchen-Aid! Set aside. In a separate bowl sift together next six dry ingredients and then add them to the creamed mixture. Shape dough into balls and dip tops into sugar. Place on greased cookie sheet or, my favorite little tool, the silicone baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees ten to twelve minutes. Immediately remove from baking sheet.
** Allergy Trick** Did you know that you can substitute bananas for eggs. I have been using this trick with my youngest daughter who is highly allergic to eggs and she thinks it tastes great. Of course always use your discretion as when to use bananas. Some things just don't taste right with banana flavoring. Use 1/2 -3/4 of regular size banana for 1-3 eggs. You can use this in brownies, cookies most anything that is sweet it will work. Try it, it works I'm telling you!
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Wheat Germ Pancakes with Blueberries aka: "Purple Pancakes"
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup white flour
2 Tbls. sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup toasted wheat germ (You can find this with the oatmeal in the grocery store, it comes in a glass jar and is already toasted)
1 egg white
2 cups buttermilk (fresh or powdered)
1 cup frozen or fresh blueberries (if using frozen, completely thaw and rinse)
1. Put flours, sugar, baking soda, salt and wheat germ into a bowl. Stir with a spoon.
2. In a separate bowl, combine egg, egg white and buttermilk.
3. Put the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir. Mix just enough for dough to be mixed , it will be lumpy.
4. Add in berries and stir gently. Don't worry, pancakes might be a little purple. This is how they came to be known as purple pancakes at our house!
5. Preheat nonstick skillet on medium heat. You can brush pan with a little butter or leave out this step. Put 1/4 cup of batter onto skillet and flip when the bubbles burst on top. Cook until done.
**If you are making many pancakes and want to keep the cooked ones warm while you are cooking, just preheat your oven to the lowest setting (mine is 170) and plop them in there while you are cooking. Keeps them nice and warm without drying them out.**
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
I believe I got this recipe out of a magazine. It is a Stove-Top Recipe so you probably could get on their website and find it too. I like to mix it up a little bit and throw in additional sour cream or change the stuffing to turkey stuffing instead of chicken stuffing. Ooooooo, now I am really living on the wild side!
Stove Top Fast Cass
1 pkg (6 oz.) Stove Top Stuffing Mix for Chicken (or Turkey if you are wild like me)
1-1/2lb. boneless, skinless, chicken breasts cut into 1-inch pieces ( I use about two good size chicken breasts, it's just easier. I hate to measure)
1 can (10 3/4 oz) condensed cream of chicken soup
1/3 cup of sour cream
1 bag of frozen peas and carrots, thawed and drained ( the original recipe calls for the mixed vegetables, but I am not a huge lima bean fan and the peas and carrots came out with rave reviews from the fam. Please use whatever you like or what you have handy) don't forget to thaw these guys first. There is nothing worse then having hard peas and carrots in this casserole. Trust me, I have learned by mistake.
O.k. so here's the deal:
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Prepare stuffing mix as directed on package; set aside.
Mix chicken, soup, sour cream and vegetables in a 13x9 inch baking dish; top with stuffing.
The directions say to bake 30 minutes or until chicken is done. My oven takes about 40-45 minutes for the chicken to be done. You may have to experiment a little.
I told you, super easy and really tasty!
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
*Look below for puree and mashing ideas* You are probably thinking I am crazy for feeding somewhat spicy chili to my 1 year old. However, this is great to give children who need more "heat" in their food for sensory issues. Give my son a bland food and it doesn't have enough kick to it for him to want to work on his feeding, this however, he will go crazy with. Things you learn during feeding therapy! Thanks Peri, you are the best!
Quick & Delicious Chili
1 lb. ground beef or ground turkey
2 cans Hunts Chili Makin's tomato sauce (Note: I have never been able to find this at Safeway but know that Raley's & Bel Air stocks it)
1 15 oz. can pinto beans (undrained)
1. Brown ground meat in a pot seasoned with salt and pepper. Drain fat from meat. Pop open the 3 cans and dump into the meat. Stir, and then bring to a bubble. Simmer for 20 minutes to an hour, stirring occasionally. Top with cheddar cheese, if desired.
***To puree, simply put into a food processor and blend to desired consistency. If it is still too thick, add a little water. To mash, either use your food processor for just a few whirls or mash with fork.***
Monday, August 4, 2008
Deb's "Take It Anywhere" Mac Salad
Friday, August 1, 2008
Fresh sweet bread (you know, the stuff you get warm at the grocery store)
Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1. Take your bread roll and mentally cut it into 3rds. If you are doing 2-4 breasts, then you just need about 1/3 of it. If you are doing more then increase accordingly. Take your bread and tear it into a food processor. You should be using the usual cutting blade. Process the bread until you get a breadcrumb consistency you like. Put in a dish (I like a pie plate).
2. Add seasonings to taste to the breadcrumbs (garlic salt, pepper, italian seasoning, parmesan). Everyone has a different palate for seasonings, so I intentionally left this up to you. A start is at about 1 tsp each of the seasonings and about 1/4 cup of the parmesan. Smell the mixture to see how it smells and this will help you adjust. Make sure they are mixed well into the breadcrumbs.
3. Beat the 2 eggs into a dish (I like using pie plates).
4. Rinse chicken and dip into egg, then in breadcrumbs and then lay on a plate.
5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Preheat a skillet with about 2 Tbls of olive oil in it. Once warm, place chicken into oil and let cook on that side for about 3-5 minutes on med-high heat. Flip and you should see a nice golden brown. Cook on this side for 3-5 minutes as well. Transfer chicken into a greased 13x9 pan and place in oven. Let cook for about 30-45 minutes or until juices run clear. The times will vary time to time due to thickness of chicken breast.
6. Let rest for a few minutes and then, enjoy!
*****Tip for pureeing or mashing this...*****
* Chunk chicken into your food processor. Add chicken stock to get a nice puree, or just a little to mash it. Also, if serving pasta or mashed potatoes with this, put those in there instead or with the chicken stock to get a good puree or mash. *