Salisbury Steak... It's not just for TV Dinners

I think Salisbury Steak has a bad reputation. The only time I remember ever hearing about it is on a tv dinner package. This recipe came up on Amy’s blog and I thought I’d reconsider since it looked like something Cancy would like. I’ve gotta’ say, it wasn’t bad. It went perfect with mashed potatoes. Try this, and you’ll end up with a very content husband.

Amy’s Salisbury Steak

1 (10.5 ounce) can condensed French onion soup
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon mustard powder

In a large bowl, mix together 1/3 cup condensed French onion soup with ground beef, bread crumbs, egg, salt and black pepper. Shape into 6 oval patties.

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, brown both sides of patties. Pour off excess fat.

In a small bowl, blend flour and remaining soup until smooth. Mix in ketchup, water, Worcestershire sauce and mustard powder. Pour over meat in skillet. Cover, and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Grown-Up Hamburger Helper

This is a dish made for Cancy. He went through his fair share of Hamburger Helper before I met him. The Dijon & Colby cheese are what pulled me in. This recipe comes together super easily. I would recommend that you prep your ingredients before you start just to keep things moving along. Although this is originally a Rachael Ray recipe, I followed Shelly’s version because she cut the serving size down.

Grown up Hamburger Helper

2 cups pasta (I used orrichette shaped pasta)

1/2 pound ground beef (To help cut some calories & fat, I used ground turkey)

2 big tablespoons of grated onion

2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons butter

1 1/2 tablespoons flour

1/2 cup chicken stock

1 cup of half and half (We used fat free 1/2 & 1/2)

1/2 tablespoon dijon mustard

1 1/4 cup shredded colby jack cheese

chopped dill pickles
diced tomatoes or salsa (We didn't use this)

Boil a pot of water and add the pasta, cook per the box. Don't drain until the rest is ready.

In a large skillet brown the meat. Add the onion and worcestershire then some salt and pepper. When fully cooked, remove to a paper plate and get rid of the grease.

In the same skillet, over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and cook for a minute. Whisk in the half and half and the chicken stock. Bring to a bubble and cooke for a few minutes until it thickens up. Stir in the dijon. Add the cheese and keep stirring until all melted into gooey goodness. More salt and pepper.

Drain the pasta and add to the sauce skillet along with the meat. Serve with the dill pickles and tomatoes/salsa if you wish.

Cake Batter Ice Cream

I’ve had this recipe starred in my Google Reader for awhile now. Today was another hot Texas Summer day so I thought it would be the perfect time for Birthday Cake Ice Cream. This was delicious. I’d say it’s probably one of my favorite ice cream recipes, I’ve tried so far. Very Rich, Very Sweet... Next time, if anything, I may just cut down the sugar to about 1/4 Cup. But this is definitely worth trying out.

Cake Batter Ice Cream

1 cup whole milk

1/2 cup sugar

2 cups heavy whipping cream
(I used fat free 1/2 & 1/2)

1 cup boxed cake mix

Sprinkles, if desired

Mix the milk and sugar until the sugar is dissolved.  Pour in the heavy whipping cream and cake mix.  Whisk together until completely mixed in.

Turn on ice cream maker and pour in mix.  Let churn for 25 minutes.  Pour in the sprinkles during the last five minutes of churning.

Transfer to a bowl and freeze.

Cilantro Jalapeno Hummus

I love hummus. Recently I started making my own and am hooked. I don’t think I’ll ever enjoy store-bought hummus again. I came across this recipe on Annie’s blog and had to try it. So here, for those who like things a bit spicy... a yummy, healthy snack to keep you happy.

Cilantro Jalapeno Hummus

1/3-1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves

1-2 jalapeno peppers, ribbed and seeded (depending on desired flavor)

1 clove garlic, peeled

3 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/4 cup water

6 tbsp. tahini

2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 (14 oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. cumin

Pinch of cayenne pepper

Combine the cilantro, jalapenos, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor.  Pulse until the ingredients have been finely minced.

In a small bowl, combine the lemon juice and water.  In another bowl, whisk together the tahini and olive oil.  Set aside.

Scrape down the sides of the food processor bowl and add the chickpeas, salt, cumin and cayenne.  Process until almost fully ground, about 15 seconds.

Scrape down the bowl.  With the machine running add the lemon juice-water mixture in a steady stream through the feed tube.

Scrape down the bowl and continue to process for one minute.  With the machine running, add the oil-tahini mixture in a steady stream through the feed tube, and continue to process until smooth and creamy, about 15 seconds, scraping down the bowl as needed.

Transfer the hummus to a serving bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let stand until the flavors meld, at least 30 minutes.

Grilled Tilapia Tacos with Avocado Creme

We had some tilapia that we needed to use up and this seemed like a nice way to use them. I made a simple avocado creme to serve with this. Overall, a very healthy & easy dinner. I hope you enjoy.

Grilled Tilapia Tacos with Avocado Creme

For the tacos:
2 tilapia fillets
taco seasoning

For the avocado creme:
1 small ripe avocado
1/4 C fat free sour cream

In a Ziploc bag, combine the juice of 1 lime with about a Tbps of taco seasoning. Shake the bag, to mix and then add in the tilapia fillets. Marinate this for about 10 minutes (while you heat your grill.

Before your turn on your grill, place a sheet of foil on the grill grates and spray with a non stick spray. This is just an easier way to cook this fish. Turn grill heat to low & cook fish for about 10 minutes, turning once, until fish is white & flakey.

While the fish is cooking, scoop out the flesh of a small ripe avocado and combine with the sour cream. Set this aside.

Wrap tortillas in foil and place in the grill, on the top section to heat through.

To serve, spread warm tortillas with avocado creme. top with flaked tilapia, and a sprinkling of cilantro.

Biscuits & Sausage Gravy

Every Southern woman seems to have her own sausage gravy recipe. I started making this as a very occasional breakfast when Cancy & I were married. You see, it’s not very healthy for you... Shocking, right? :) But it’s very delicious and a nice lazy late morning breakfast.

Biscuits & Sausage Gravy
1 small can of buttermilk biscuits (or make your own if you are feeling like a go-getter)
1 lb spicy ground pork breakfast sausage (we use Jimmy Dean’s Hot sausage)
4 Tbps white flour
2 Cups of milk (You can use skim or whole, I can’t taste the difference in this recipe)

Brown your sausage, breaking it down into small pieces as it cooks through. While your sausage is browning, bake your biscuits as directed on the package.

Once sausage is browned, sprinkle the flour over top. You’ll want to stir everything around for about 2 minutes to make sure the flour coats all of the sausage & any grease. This will help to “cook” the flour and get rid of a floury taste.

Once you can’t see the flour in the pan anymore, slowly stir in the milk. You’ll want high heat at first, just until it starts to boil and then drop to low. Stir this often because you don’t want any lumps. Stir in Pepper to taste.

When the biscuits are done, quarter them or just tear them up. Put them on a plate and cover in your sausage gravy.

Frito Pie

This is probably one of Cancy’s most favorite “man foods”. He says it’s just part of being from Texas. He made this for me when we were dating in Minnesota. It isn’t made very often around here, but it is a nice occasional guilty pleasure. Truly nothing good for you in here at all, but thats not the point. :)

Frito Pie

1 full bag of Fritos corn chips
1 medium white onion, chopped
1 jalapeno, diced
1 bag of grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 large can of Hormel Chili, no beans

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Spread 1/2 cup of Fritos in a baking dish. Spread 1/2 the chili or the Fritos. Sprinkle half the onion/jalapenos and half the cheese over the chili. Repeat for 1 more layer

Bake for 15 or 20 minutes and cheese is bubbly. Serve hot.

Strawberry Sorbet

With strawberries on sale this week & the 100 degree temps of a Texas June, this strawberry sorbet recipe form Annie’s blog was perfect. I didn’t have any kirsch on hand so I added 1 Tbsp of a white wine I had in the fridge. This was delicious on it’s own, but when topped with a little fat free whipped cream, it was even better.

Strawberry Sorbet

1 lb. fresh strawberries, rinsed and hulled

3/4 cup sugar

1 tsp. kirsch (optional)

1 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice

Pinch of salt

Slice the strawberries and toss them in a medium bowl with the sugar and kirsch, if using, stirring until the sugar begins to dissolve.  Cover and let stand for 1 hour, stirring every so often.

Puree the strawberries and their liquid with the lemon juice and salt in a blender or food processor until smooth.  Press the mixture through a strainer to remove the seeds if you wish.

Chill the mixture thoroughly, then freeze it in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Source: The Perfect Scoop by David Lebovitz

Pesto Lasagna with Shrimp & Scallops

This dinner comes from Food Network’s, Ask Aida. I’ve watched her show before but never really saw something I had to make until this. The original is 9 servings, I cut the recipe in half and used an 8*8 dish. This made 4 large servings. (We had 2 friends of ours over so the recipe feeds 1 girl, and 3 hungry guys) I served this with a simple salad and everyone was full & happy. Enjoy!!

Pesto Lasagna with Shrimp & Scallops
For the pesto:
2 cups basil leaves, loosely packed, washed and tough stems trimmed and roughly torn
1 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (about 2 ounces)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup heavy cream (ff 1/2 & 1/2)
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
4 medium garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoons kosher salt

For the Seafood:
1/2 lb scallops & 1/2lb shrimp

For the lasagna:
1/2 pound fresh lasagna noodles, cooked and drained
1/2 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (about 1-ounce)

For the pesto: Combine half pesto ingredients in a blender or food processor, and process until evenly combined, about 1 minute. Add remaining ingredients and process until evenly blended, about 1 more minute. Taste and adjust seasoning, as desired.

For the seafood: melt a tbsp of butter in a pan, add shrimp & scallops to hot pan and toss until done. (do not overcook)

For the lasagna: Heat oven to 375 degrees F and arrange rack in upper third.

Alternatively layer a scant 1/4 cup pesto, a handful of the cooked seafood, and 1 sheet of fresh lasagna noodles in an 8 by 8-inch baking dish, trimming noodles, as needed, to fit. Layer until you are out of the seafood mixture and to 1 layer with just pesto.

Top lasagna with cheese and bake until bubbly around edges and cheese is melted, about 20 to 25 minutes. Let sit at least 20 minutes before serving.

Rachael Ray’s Salsa Verde Burgers

As most people know, I adore Rachael Ray. Her recipes tend to be a “go-to” of mine when trying to come up meals for the week. These Salsa Verde Burgers were a great reason to grill out.

Rachael Ray’s Salsa Verde Burgers
1 avocado, halved and pitted
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 pound ground turkey thigh meat
1/2 cup salsa verde
4 slices pepper Jack cheese (about 4 ounces)
4 kaiser rolls, split
1 cup fresh cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped
2 small green or red tomatoes, sliced

Scoop the avocado flesh into a small bowl. Add the mayonnaise and garlic and mash with a fork until well combined but chunky. Season with salt and set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine the ground turkey and salsa. Divide the mixture to form 4 patties.

In a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, cook the patties for 4 minutes on one side. Flip and top each with a slice of cheese; cover and cook for 4 minutes more.

Spread the avocado aioli on the split side of each roll bottom and cover with 1/4 cup cilantro. Top with a patty and 2 tomato slices; set the roll tops into place.

Asian Meatloaf with sweet/spicy glaze

Brianna posts some of the most delicious Asian dishes on her blog, Oishi. I saw this Asian Meatloaf and knew I had to make it. We served it with Ramen & Edamame for a very tasty, flavorful meal.

Asian Meatloaf with sweet/spicy glaze

For the Meatloaf:
2 TBS. red miso, dissolved in a little water to form a paste, divided
1/2 lb. ground pork
1/2 lb. ground beef
1/3 cup panko breadcrumbs
1 egg
4 green onions, white & green parts chopped
1/2 cup chopped shitake mushrooms
a thumbnail-sized piece of ginger, peeled and minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 TBS. soy sauce
1 1/2 tsp. fish sauce
1 1/2 tsp. rice vinegar
a squeeze of honey
1 1/2 tsp. mirin
1 tsp. brown sugar

For the Glaze:
1 TBS. chili paste (such as Sambal Oelek)
squeeze of honey
squeeze of hot chili sauce (such as Sriracha)
1/2 tsp. brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a little bowl, combine the red miso and a little water to form a paste. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the ground meats, breadcrumbs, egg, green onion, mushrooms, ginger, garlic, and 1 TBS. of the miso paste. Mix with your hands until combined.

In the same little bowl as the remaining miso paste, add the soy sauce, fish sauce, rice vinegar, honey, mirin, and brown sugar. Mix well. Spoon this mixture a little at a time into the meat mixture, and use your hands to incorporate it in. Reserve about a spoonful of sauce in the bottom of the bowl to make the glaze.

Shape the meat-mixture into a loaf-shape on a greased baking sheet.

To the bowl with the reserved spoonful of sauce, add the chili paste, honey, hot chili sauce, and brown sugar. Stir to combine. Spoon on top of the meatloaf.
Bake the meatloaf for about 45 minutes or until done. If making a side of roasted asparagus, toss the asparagus on another baking sheet with a drizzle of sesame oil, a sprinkling of chili flakes, and some salt & pepper. Put in the oven for the last 10-12 minutes of baking time.

Jalapeno Chicken

I came across this recipe on Linday’s blog. Yum! I baked mine as she did and decided that this is one of the easiest, yummiest, weeknight ways to do chicken. We served this with sliced avocado’s to help cool down from the jalapeno's heat. :)

Jalapeno Chicken

2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
Appx 5 oz Italian dressing (I used Fat Free Italian)
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, halved lengthwise and seeded (I used sliced from the jar)
Appx 3 oz cream cheese, softened (I used Fat Free)
2 slices bacon (I used bacon crumbles)

Place chicken breasts in a dish with the dressing. Cover, and marinate in the refrigerator at least 2 hours.
Preheat the grill for high heat.

Stuff each jalapeno half with cream cheese. Roll chicken breasts around jalapeno peppers. Wrap each chicken breast with a slice of bacon. Secure with toothpicks.

(If using sliced jalapenos and bacon crumbles like I did, just spread the cream cheese inside each chicken breast and add in jalapenos and bacon bits.)

Lightly oil the grill grate. Arrange wrapped chicken breasts on the prepared grill. Cook for 20 minutes, turning frequently, or until bacon is browned and the chicken juices run clear.
(I baked in the oven at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes.)