Monday, October 29, 2012

Tuna Casserole

Due to current issues in my own life, I have been seriously craving some comfort food. I know some people go toward mac and cheese, cheesecake, or even pork and beans, but one of my go-to's on this is tuna casserole a la Grandmére's epic recipe.

Tuna Casserole

8 oz. uncooked noodles

14 oz. tunafish, drained

14 oz. sour cream

3/4 c. milk

1 small can of mushrooms, drained (or 1 c. sliced button mushrooms)

1 1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. black pepper, or to taste

1/2 c. Italian breadcrumbs

1/2 c. Parmesan cheese

4 tbsp. butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350* Fahrenheit. Cook noodles according to directions, and combine all ingredients but the breadcrumbs, cheese and butter in a casserole dish. Separately mix breadcrumbs, cheese and butter, and seal top of casserole. Bake for 40 minutes.

I am sorry not to have pictures of this delicious phenom-nom-nom-enon. 

- Sara

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Chocolate Cheesecake Candy Cane Bars

I feel the need to share this recipe. I didn't create this recipe, but a friend sent it to me because I love all things food.

It is full of all things win, tasty, and CHOCOLATE!!!!

Make with the clicky for deliciousness!

~ Sara

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Chicken and Dumplings

See, I think everyone has certain kinds of comfort foods. Some like mac and cheese, others like pickle loaf.

For me, one of my personal faves is chicken and dumplings. The canned stuff has never tasted right to me. I don't know if ti's the extra salt added during canning, the texture of the dumplings, or what... it simply never tasted right unless homemade. 

My mum makes some serious chicken and dumplings. She got her recipe for dumplings from my Grandma West, who, while she was not fond of my mother, could cook like a fiend.

Today, I successfully made my mother's chicken and dumplings. I have made chicken and dumplings before, but they never tasted quite this fabulous. Thus, I share with you a piece of my heart, as well as happiness from my tummy to yours.

Chicken and Dumplings

1 whole medium-sized chicken.
10-12 cubes chicken bouillon, or to taste
2  1/2 tbsp dried minced onion
Handful of celery leaves. (Yes, the LEAVES!)
Pepper to taste

Combine these in a 12-qt stock pot with about 6-7 cups of water, and let cook on low heat until the chicken falls off the bone. Let chicken cool, then de-bone chicken and add it to the stock left in the pot. 

Then, we make the dumplings!

3 3/4 c all-purpose flour
3/4 c milk
3/4 c shortening
3 eggs
4 1/2 tsp salt

Cut shortening and flour together. Mix egg, milk and salt; combine with flour and shortening mixture until dough forms. Flour your counter and roll out dough to approximately 1/4" thickness. (Some do 1/8", but I like my dumplings a bit thick.) Let the dough dry, as it should be slightly sticky initially. 

Turn the heat up under the chicken stock until the stock boils. Cut dumplings to approximately 1" square pieces and drop 6-10 in at a time, removing them when they float to the top. Continue doing this until all of your dumplings are cooked.

I use a Paula Deen French-style rolling pin. HUGE fan of it. Any form of rolling pin will work, though.

Then, add 2 family-sized cans of cream of mushroom soup to the stock! (You can use cream of chicken or cream of celery, but I love the mushroom.) Stir the mixture until the soup is fully incorporated, then put the dumplings back in. 

There you have it; some of the best chicken and dumplings known to man. And they're even better after refrigeration overnight! Also, this freezes fabulously. :)

After feeding a few folk, dipping my lunches up for this weekend, and snatching a couple more dumplings, this was what was left. Filled a butter bowl. Delish!!!!

Love you all!

- Sara

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Pickled Squash

I hated squash as a kid.

Heck, I am picky about my consumption of any gourd to this day, except for pumpkin.

However, my Grandma West had within her grasp the sole means I would eat squash happily. Delectable, bread-and-butter pickled squash. I completely forgot this stuff was squash. I remember making myself sick on them a time or two, even, before I recalled that they were, indeed, slices of stuff I normally shrunk away from.

All that said, here's my Grandma West's pickled squash recipe. I hope you enjoy it. :)

Pickled Squash

8c. sliced squash
4 onions, chopped
2 bell peppers, chopped
½ c. canning salt
3c. sugar
3c. vinegar
1 tsp. celery seed
1 tsp. mustard seed

Put vegetables in sink and sprinkle salt over. Cover with ice cubes and let stand 3 hrs. or overnight. Drain well. Combine sugar, vinegar, mustard seed and celery seed. Bring to boil and boil 1 minute. Put vegetables in and boil for 2 minutes. Put in jars and seal.

Friday, August 24, 2012

PB&J Morning Muffins

I just found this recipe via DailyBurn Tracker, and since it is gluten-free as well as dairy-free, I had to share it! Hope you all like it.

2 1/2 cups All purpose gluten-free baking flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup natural peanut butter
3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
1/2 cup local honey
1/2 cup finely ground carrots
1/2 cup finely ground zucchini
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup all fruit no sugar added jam - your choice of flavor

PB&J Morning Muffins
It's always a struggle to get kids to eat their veggies, so why not hide a serving in their breakfast? This PB&J Morning Muffin recipe includes grated carrots and zucchini masked with the familiar flavor of peanut butter and jelly that kids love.These muffins are gluten-free and dairy-free, plus they are packed with fiber and healthy fats.
These muffins are a little high in calories because they are intended to serve as a complete breakfast. Studies show that kids who eat a nutritious breakfast score higher on standardized tests (Source: USDA).
It's easy to prepare these muffins on a Sunday evening. They are a perfect grab and go breakfast for the week ahead. You can also freeze half of the batch and defrost / heat them as you need them, but they are so tasty that they will probably be gobbled up faster than you think.
1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place foil muffin cups into a muffin pan, or lightly grease muffin pan with olive oil.

2) In a large bowl, combine gluten-free flour, baking powder, and baking soda. In a separate bowl, combine beaten eggs, olive oil, honey, almond milk, and peanut butter and beat until smooth. Add grated carrots, zucchini, walnuts, and stir until coated.

3) Spoon 2 tbsp of mixture into each muffin cup, and top with a small dollop of all fruit no sugar added jam. After you do this with all 12 muffin cups, cover the top of the jam with the remaining batter.

4) Bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick into the center of the muffin and it comes out clean.