Tag Archives: dinner

Chicken Toscana Soup

A few weekends ago, I was invited to participate in a “soup swap”. Living in the ‘burbs, I’m learning that there are far more domestic things going on out here…including “soup swaps”. So I took to twitter and asked for soup recipes because come on, I certainly don’t have any. Within minutes I had 3 ready to go. With the urging of my sister, I chose to go with Chicken Toscana Soup.

toscana chicken soup

Ingredients
Olive Oil
1 cup chopped onion
2-5 cloves garlic, chopped
4 cups chicken broth
3-4 cups cooked chicken (I recommend a store bought rotisserie chicken)
3 Roma tomatoes, chopped
2 mini gnocchi packages
1 1/2 cup half-and-half
2-3 cups skim milk
2-3 cups spinach leaves (torn)
1 cup Parmesan cheese
fresh basil

Directions:
Cook onion and garlic in olive oil. Add chicken broth. Bring to a boil. Add the gnocchi, cook 2 minutes. Add chicken and tomatoes, simmer. Sprinkle in cheese, simmer for 5-8 minutes. Add cream and milk. Add spinach. Stir together.  Top with basil.

Remove from heat.

From my one attempt, I thought that leaving this soup on a low heat for a while afterwards really thickened this bad boy up. And the flavors just blended incredibly well together.

I hope you enjoy this soup half as much as I did.
Happy Friday!

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Guest blogger: Becki D!

I suck.
There, I said it. I’ve been a horrendous blogger. No real reason other than being exhausted and kind of burned out on the computer as a whole. No lie. Where I once used to come home from work and spend the night religiously on the computer blogging, reading other’s blogs, I now avoid the computer entirely.
It’s crazy. I know.

But I promise I’m going to try harder.
Because in all honesty, I’ve missed you guys.

And even though I’m blogging right now, this is still a tad bit of a lie. Because Becki D. from becki bakes is taking over after this point to guest blog for me.

So thanks guys. Thanks for sticking with me and my sheer laziness. And now, I’m turning the mic over to Becki and her insanely delicious Chicken Alfredo and Dip’Um Recipe.

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Elastic Waistband Club: Man-Pleasin’ Meal

Let’s be real – this meal is definitely woman-pleasin’, but it makes me feel better if I can blame the consumption of this creamy, buttery, carb-loaded goodness on the Hubs. 

So.

Dave’s absolute favorite home-cooked meal: Chicken Alfredo and Dip’Um (Lauren’s name for spicy oil and vinegar bread dip).

Chicken Alfredo with Artichoke Hearts
Ingredients:
-1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced
-1 box mini bowtie pasta (or pasta of your choice)
-1 can artichoke hearts, drained (optional, but they are totally awesome)
-1 stick butter
-1 cup heavy cream
-1 1/2 cups fresh grated parmesan cheese
-3 tbsp olive oil
-2 cloves garlic, minced

Directions:
-Pour olive oil and minced garlic in large saucepan over medium heat. Saute diced chicken until thoroughly cooked.
-Bring saucepan of water to boil while cooking chicken.
-Add artichoke hearts and butter, continue stirring until it is completely melted.
-Add pasta to your boiling water and cook as directed on package
-Add cream and parmesan to chicken, stirring until everything is completely incorporated and sauce has slightly thickened.
-Drain pasta and pour into large serving bowl, pour chicken mixture over top and mix thoroughly.

Dip’Um
Ingredients:
-1 cup extra virgin olive oil
-2/3 cup aged balsamic vinegar
-3 cloves garlic, minced
-1 1/2 tbsp dried basil
-1 tbsp dried oregano
-1 tsp dried thyme
-1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
-1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Directions:
Mix all ingredients thoroughly. Can be made up to 1 day in advance – the further ahead you make it, the better the ingredients meld. Though we often make it right before dinner, and it’s good that way too!

Serve with warm, crusty Italian bread.
becki d

Thanks so much to Becki D. for sharing this butter filled pasta goodness!

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WTW – burger ‘n fries pot pie

So I have to apologize. I’ve kind of fallen off the face of the Earth. Between work, life, the sun setting far earlier, and my latest project, my attention and love and caring for yawyeor has kind of well, gotten lost in the mix. I’m hoping to step my game up again soon, but in the meantime, I will never leave you in a lurch when it comes to our dear sweet White Trash Wednesday.

Luckily for me, Beth from Happy Life Happy Wife sent me this pretty freaking spectacular White Trash recipe. Let’s just say it’s a spin on the old classic burger and fries meal you’d pick up at your local burger joint. And as much as you’re picturing it look like this, I assure you, it won’t. Because this is classy.
yeah! burger

And this…

is not.

Burger ‘n Fries Pot Pie

ingredients
1 1/2lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese (4 oz)
2 cups frozen crispy French-fried potatoes (from 20-oz bag)

directions
1. Heat oven to 450°F. In 12-inch nonstick skillet, cook beef and onion over medium-high heat about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beef is thoroughly cooked; drain well. Sprinkle flour over beef mixture. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in tomatoes; heat to boiling. Remove from heat.
2. In ungreased 1 1/2-quart casserole, spread beef mixture. Sprinkle with cheese. Arrange frozen potatoes evenly in single layer on top.
3. Bake uncovered about 20 minutes or until potatoes are golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Original recipe can be found here.

(Big thanks to Beth for this oh so white trashy find!)

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A White Trash Wednesday Miracle

I made you a promise and I actually kept it.  And in a (semi) timely manner no less. It’s shocking really because I’m one of those people who has all of these grandiose plans…made with the sincerest of intentions. Then life gets in the way. Really, it does. Between that 9-5 gig that pays for the roof over my head and the clothes on my back, the weekends away, the long commutes, the early morning workouts (say what?), the tv watching, and that side gig I’ve got going now, following through with certain commitments tends to fall by the wayside sometimes.

But I said I would make this meal and that’s exactly what I did.

And I’m thrilled I did for two reasons:
1. it was goooood.
2. it means I am, deep down, a little white trash.

And I’m okay with that.
Because deep down, I think that’s why you like me.

If you’re wondering what all of this nattering is about….it’s about the first official White Trash Wednesday poll.
It’s about the Tater Tot Casserole.
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If you’re game and need a white trashy recipe to test out, by all means try this one.  But I do have a few thoughts. Mind if I share? Good. Thanks for playing along.
The recipe calls for cream of mushroom soup to be mixed with the ground beef. If you’re not one for the soup taste (my husband loathes the stuff), I say go for sour cream instead and while you’re at it, toss in a Lipton Onion soup mix for good measure.

I’m pretty sure I may go that route the next time I make the stuff.
And there will be a next time.

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Lazy recipe

I don’t know about you, but I’m always wishing for more hours in the day.  You get up, go to work, spend far too much time on a commute, get home, attempt to unwind, walk the dogs, cook dinner, goof around on the computer, go to bed.

Either I’ve got too much on my plate or I’m completely inept at time management. So most nights all I want to do is snap my fingers and have dinner magically appear on the table.  Unfortunately, I’ve yet to conjure up that fairy.  So I make my fallback dish.

Pasta.

In some form or another, we eat a lot of pasta in my house. It’s cheap. It’s easy. And it’s incredibly hard to screw up.

This may also be the reason why I gain weight.  Ah, at least I’m happy.

So for this one, you need 5 ingredients:
farfalle (bow tie) pasta
pesto
chicken
olive oil
sundried tomatoes
(salt and pepper)

directions:
heat oil over medium heat.
dice chicken, season with salt and pepper, and cook in oil until browned.
meanwhile, boil pasta until al dente. drain.
once chicken is cooked through, add pasta, sundried tomatoes, and pesto.
toss together to coat well.

Optional extras:
crushed red pepper
minced garlic

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And now you can go have that glass of wine you want while you unwind instead of wasting anymore time slaving over a hot stove.

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Farm Burger {decatur}

This past weekend, on an outting to the quaint little town of Decatur, my new friend, Emily, introduced me to her side of town’s newest burger joint. As I’d already experienced Yeah! Burger, a burger joint cut from the same cloth (they both use local grassfed beef/cows/whatever), I figured I was already pretty well versed in the world of tasty, organic type burgers.

That was until I tried:

Yes kids, it’s true. I’ve found a new love and it’s called Farm Burger. And it’s delicious and awesome and mouth watering and did I mention awesome? 

Because it was.  Like totally, wonderfully, spectacularly awesome. And I’m craving it right now.  With cheddar, Duke’s mayo, grain mustard, lettuce, and ketchup. Simple.

608a

But I have a little problem.
I live in the burbs.
And Farm Burger is 24.8 miles and an estimated 40 minutes from my house. My husband says that because it’s in Decatur (translation=too far away), that it’s like it doesn’t even exist. (Did you hear that? That was me whimpering….)

But hey, that’s his loss. Because even though it’s 24.8 miles/40 minutes away, a nice leisurely stroll down I-75 / I-85 is quite relaxing on a Saturday afternoon.
Especially when I’ve got this waiting for me at my destination.

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Prosciutto Ravioli

These days, the food I’ve been making (for blogging purposes, of course) really has increased my need for elastic waistband pants. No, really.

So my grocery list today included things like plums, squash, water, strawberries, and Lean Cuisines.

I got home, drank a liter of water and felt better about things. Even took the dogs for a walk.

Then I decided to make dinner.
And what do I make?
Pasta. Carb filled pasta.

Will and power are two words NOT in my vocabulary.
Clearly.

It’s obvious that pasta is my kryptonite. If it’s the same for you, then I hope you’ll make this dish. Because even though I felt guilty about eating pasta….filled with prosciutto, spinach and ricotta…this dish was simple and delicious.

And just remember, the diet can always start tomorrow.

prosciutto ravioli

That’s what I keep telling myself.

Recipe adapted from Giada De Laurenttis – Prosciutto Ravioli.

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White Trash Wednesday! Spam Hashbrown Bake

Since last week’s white trash recipe got so many of you talking about Spam, glorious Spam, I thought I’d take the “food” and run with it!

I randomly came across a recipe for Spam Hashbrown Bake.  And no, sadly, I haven’t tried it (I have an aversion to Spam that goes back to my childhood). But maybe one day, I’ll be brave enough to go into the test kitchen and prepare this dish. Still not sure I could actually eat it.

Spam Hashbrown Bake
Makes 8 Servings

{Printable recipe}

Ingredients:
1 pkg Frozen hashbrown potatoes, slightly thawed
1/2 Cup Butter, melted
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2. cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 can SPAM Luncheon Meat, cubed
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup diced green chilies, drained (Chi-Chis brand recommended)
2 cups crushed potato chips

Directions:
Heat oven to 350F.
In a large bowl combine potatoes, melted butter, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
In a separate bowl, combine the cheese, SPAM, soup, sour cream, milk, onion, and green chilies.
Next, add the Spam mixture to the potato mixture; mix well.
Pour into a 2-quart baking dish.
Sprinkle with crushed potato chips.
Bake 45-60 minutes or until heated through.

Seems like a perfect dish for a potluck dinner. 

An incredibly white trash potluck dinner.

The original recipe can be found here.

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Mashed Potatoes

mashed potatoes 2

It never fails that I set out to eat well and end up failing miserably. After reading through your lists of favorite comfort foods I had an overwhelming urge to make mashed potatoes.

So, I went against my better judgement (and my growing waistline) and made them. And because I’m such a giver,  I’m sharing this recipe with you.  Won’t you join me in the elastic waistband club?

Mashed Potatoes

Ingredients:
2 1/2 lbs yukon gold potatoes cubed (or small red potatoes halved)
1/2 cup half and half
4-8oz cream cheese (depending on how creamy you want the consistency to be)
salt and pepper
sprinkle of garlic salt
1/2 cup grated parmesan

Directions:
Place potatoes in a pot of cold water. Boil the potatoes until tender (when pierced with a fork), about 15 minutes. Drain potatoes and return to warm pot. Mash the potatoes. Slowly add the half and half so as to avoid a pasty texture. Mash the cream cheese, salt & pepper, and garlic salt together until creamy. Finish it off by mixing in the parmesan.

Serve warm with a side of fried chicken.  Or is it the other way around?

Elastic Waistband Club Forever!

 

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Chicken Florentine

Clearly I’m a healthy girl. I made yet another pasta dish for dinner the other night. And the best part is that this recipe didn’t even call for pasta, I just felt inclined to serve the dish that way.

See, that’s me…the poster child of good health. And a growing waistline.

(I’m thinking it’s time to actually start working out. That is, if I’m going to continue to eat creamy sauces, fried desserts, and pasta. Hmm, there’s a novel idea.)

So enough self-loathing for the moment. How about another recipe!

I found this recipe for Chicken Florentine over on allrecipes.com. If you haven’t checked it out, do.  It’s pretty user friendly. Or you can just keep coming here and I’ll do the legwork for you.

chicken florentine

Chicken Florentine (casserole)


Ingredients:
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 cup butter (I used less just so I wouldn’t feel like a total pig)
3 teaspoons minced garlic (again, your call depending on your love/or hate of garlic)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup (low sodium)
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/2 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 pkg frozen spinach, thawed
fresh mushrooms (your call here)
bacon bits (yes, I used pre-packaged bacon bits. don’t judge.)
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Place the chicken breast halves on a baking sheet; bake 20 to 30 minutes, until no longer pink and juices run clear. Remove from heat, and set aside. (Or…you could saute your chicken in some olive oil over medium heat until cooked through.)
Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees F.
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
Stirring constantly, mix in the garlic, lemon juice, cream of mushroom soup, Italian seasonings, half-and-half, and parmesan.
Then spread the spinach over the bottom of a 9×9 inch baking dish. (Make sure you’ve squeezed out all the water beforehand.)
Add the mushrooms on top of the spinach.
Pour half the cheese mixture over the mushrooms.
Top with the chicken and then pour remaining sauce mixture on top.
Sprinkle with bacon bits and top it all off with mozzarella.
Bake at 400 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes until the cheese is lightly browned.

And if you’re like me, you’ll want to serve it over a bed of pasta.
spaghetti

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