Monday, January 26, 2009

Question Of The Week

Oops! Almost forgot.

I've been cooking and baking a lot lately with the kids and am stifled all of the sudden. Looking for new recipes....for any course....snacks, desserts, meals, etc.

***What is your favorite "go to" recipe?

(I write this as I am enjoying one of my favorite salads....that I found from a friend, Carrie, writing into the blog with the recipe....hoping for some more winners! I've made this one at least a dozen times since receiving it last year....broccoli crunch salad.)


The Soladay Family said...

This is my all-time favorite "go to" salad recipe! I stole it from a teacher-friend, and it is always a crowd pleaser! Yum!

Strawberry Spinach Salad with Candied Pecans

2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 1/2 cups pecan halves
1 cup sugar
1 pound fresh spinach
1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and halved

Dressing (recipe follows)
Melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add pecans and sugar; stir to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until sugar melts around pecans and is caramel-colored. Remove pecans with a slotted spoon and spread in a single layer on a sheet of lightly greased aluminum foil. Cool completely and break up pieces as needed.

Remove and discard stems from spinach. Wash spinach and pat dry with paper towels. Tear into bite-size pieces.

Combine spinach and strawberries in a large bowl. Pour 1 cup dressing over salad mixture; toss gently. Add reserved candied pecans; toss gently. Serve immediately.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.


2/3 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
3 to 4 green onions, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons dry mustard
2 cups vegetable oil
3 tablespoons poppy seeds

Combine first 5 ingredients in container of electric blender; cover and process until smooth. With blender running, gradually add oil in a slow, steady stream through opening in lid. Process until thick and smooth.

Transfer dressing mixture to a bowl; stir in poppy seeds. Cover and chill. Store unused portion in refrigerator.
Makes 3 3/4 cups.

Moni said...

My sausage cheese dip...don't have the recipe on me right now, but I believe Casey has posted it before. That Strawberry Spinach Salad is delicious! I think it is a staple in teacher's lounges all across America!

Shannon said...

Love the last recipe that was posted!

You already know this recipe but it's definitely my Go To. I love being able to customize with whatever veggies I have on hand (fresh, canned and frozen). Peanut Butter Vegetable Chicken Soup

Anonymous said...

OK, so tried this one this weekend and it is surprisingly good! Cheeze it's threw me off a bit, but trust's GOOD!!!

Poor Man’s Toffee: Dawn’s way

1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
1 cup, packed light brown sugar
2 bags of 11.05 ounces of milk chocolate chips
½ box of the Big-size Cheez-It’s (use the big ones, as they cover more room)
1 cup of crushed toasted pecans (or walnuts or whatever you crave)

Preheat oven to 400ºF.

Line jelly roll pan or cookie sheet with foil and spray with non-stick spray. Or just use a non-stick jelly roll pan.

Lay a flat layer of Cheez-It crackers out on the foil. I did a layer and a half, making sure to cover up any gaps with Cheez-It’s.
In a saucepan, melt the sugar and butter until a boil is reached. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 3-4 minutes or until mixture is thickened and sugar is completely dissolved. Pour this mixture over the crackers and spread to coat evenly. Do not mix! Just pour, and fill in any gaps with a spatula.

Bake in pre-heated oven for 5-8 minutes, or until the toffee becomes bubbly. Turn off oven, then take out of oven and let it sit for a couple of minutes. Then sprinkle on the chocolate chips. But tray back in oven to help the chips melt a bit. When chips are melted a bit, spread them into an even layer like you would frosting a cake. After done spreading the chocolate this is the time to sprinkle on the chopped nuts or whatever else you want to add.

Let cool and/or refrigerate until hardened. Once firmly cooled then break into pieces.

So good. Trust me the Cheez-It’s make all the difference!

If the shoe FITZ said...

Sounds all fancy...but it's not...Orzo is just pasta that looks like can also use rice...or probably exclude it. Instead of spinach you can use green beans maybe or squash?

Chicken, Orzo, and Spinach Casserole

Here is a recipe I cooked between Christmas and NYE. I try to make at least one casserole a week b/c they usually make good leftovers and that means one night I don't have to cook. This casserole was really good the next day!

Chicekn, Orzo, and Spinach Casserole
4 (6-ounce) skinned and boned chicken breasts
2/3 cup uncooked orzo
1 (8-ounce) package sliced fresh mushrooms
Vegetable cooking spray
1 (10-ounce) packed chopped frozen spinach, thawed and well drained
1 (10 1/2-ounce) can low-fat cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon seasoned pepper
3/4 cup (6 ounces) shredded reduced-fat Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs

Boil chicken and water to cover in a large Dutch oven 12 minutes or until done. Remove chicken, and set aside.
Cook pasta in reserved broth according to package directions, omitting salt and fat.
Saute mushrooms until tender in a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray.
Remove from heat. Stir in chicken, pasta, spinach, and next 4 ingredients. Spoon mixture into a 13- x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with cheese and breadcrumbs.
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
Yield: 8 servings.

If the shoe FITZ said...

Been meaning to post on my own blog.
You can also add chicken or ground beef

Title: Black Bean & Salsa Soup

Great soup for the winter and incredibly easy!

3 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) vegetable broth.
1 jar (16 ounces) salsa
1 can (15 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (11 ounces) whole kernel corn, drained
1 package (5 ounces) Japanese curly noodles or 5 ounces of uncooked spaghetti
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon groud cumin
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons shredded parmesan cheese

1. Heat broth to boiling in 4-quart Dutch oven (big pot). Stir in remaining ingredients except cheese; reduct heat to medium.

2. Cook 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until noodles are tender. Sprinkle with cheese.

Number Of Servings:6

Preparation Time:10 minutes

starnes family said...

Monica's Sausage Dip recipe.....this is one of Blake's favorites....he loves it so much that he's made it in Kansas all by his big boy self!

1 lb. roll of pork sausage
1 bunch green onions chopped (optional)
1 – 8 oz. cream cheese
1- 8 oz. sour cream
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
1 loaf French bread

Brown a roll of pork sausage (ie. Jimmy Dean). Dig out the center of the French bread. Mix together cream cheese, sour cream, sausage, onion and ½ cup of grated cheese. Pour it into the bread and top with another ½ cup grated cheese. Bake at 350 for at least 30 Minutes.

Coco said...

Monica's sausage dip is my fave! I call it Mississippi Sin Dip.

I love my chicken curry salad:
Boil 4 chicken breast and dice
In small bowl mix
1 cup of mayo
1T of curry
1t of ginger
1T of soy sauce
1t of red wine vinegar
1 small can of water chestnuts
1 cup of walnuts or pecans
half of small purple onion

Combine all. YUMMY!

5 Boys And Me said...

Would love a link to the broccoli crunch salad - sounds delicious!

starnes family said...

Here you go....Broccoli Crunch Salad.

1 - 12oz pkg Broccoli Slaw
2 pks Beef Ramen Noodles Crushed
1/2 c vegetable oil
1/3 c white vinegar
1/2 c sugar
1/4 c green onions
1 c sliced almonds
1 c sunflower seeds

Mix beef packs, oil, vinegar & sugar together and set aside. Mix in a seperate bowl slaw, almonds, sunflower seeds, green onions and crushed ramen. Pour on dressing right before serving.

donatelli98 said...

OK - not a main dish but a definite go to dessert if you love chocolate .....

Kahlua Cake

Box of German Chocolate Cake Mix
1 large box Jello Instant Pudding
4 eggs
3/4 cup oil
1/3 cup Kahlua
2 Cups Sour Cream
12 oz bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray. Mix ingredients by hand. Pour into pan. Cook 1 hour. Let Cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve.

Note - a great variation is to using mint chocolate chips ...

Blake said...

Oatmeal, Ravioli, Ramen, and my favorite Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

PS. All Target brand of course Casey!!!

Amanda said...

Baking wise, I have been making cookie dough truffles a lot when I have functions or work things where I need to bring a desert because it is sooo easy and sooo good!

1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup semisweet mini chocolate morsels
1 1/2 pounds chocolate bark candy coating, melted

In a large bowl cream butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer at medium speed until creamy. Add vanilla. Gradually beat in flour and add condensed milk. Add chocolate morsels mixing well. Shape into 1-inch balls. Place on waxed paper; chill 2 hours. Dip in melted chocolate and chill again.

Last time I made this, I was out of chocolate bark, so I just made the cookie dough balls and called it faux cookie daux.