Thursday, April 28, 2011

Made Mom's "Easy Lasagna"

I have been making this recipe for years after growing up enjoying it in my Mom's kitchen.  Yesterday my lunch break was spent at home whipping up this dish for us to enjoy over the next few days.  A great thing in the Madeley household is leftovers - we love them!  This will easily feed a family of 4-5.  The simple recipe is below.

1 lb. lean, ground beef
1 28 oz. can stewed tomatoes
1 7 1/2 oz. can tomato sauce
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1 envelope spaghetti sauce mix
2 cups ricotta cheese
2 eggs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
6 oz. shredded Mozzarella cheese
8 oz. wide lasagna noodles (uncooked)

Brown eat in skillet & drain.  Add next four ingredients.  Bring to boil and shimmer for 10 minutes.  While simmering, in a small mixing bowl, mix ricotta cheese, egg, and Parmesan cheese.  Spread a little of the meat sauce in the bottom of a greased 9x13 dish.  Begin alternating layers as follows:

Layer of raw noodles, 1/3 meat sauce, half of cheese mixture, repeat and then top with last 1/3 of meat sauce.

Sprinkle Mozzarella cheese on top and cover with foil.  Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour (or until noodles are tender).  Let stand and serve.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Made Fish Tacos with Lime-Cilantro Crema

This was my first time to make fish tacos.  The Cooking Light recipe calls for red snapper fillets but they were twice the price of tilapia so I chose to save a few bucks.  If you try this recipe with red snapper, I would love to hear about it as I have never cooked snapper.  I love corn-on-the-cob during the summer months and May will be here on Sunday so it was not too early for this easy side.  Brian and our sweet friend, Scott, loved the tacos!!

1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 tbsp fat-free mayonnaise
3 tbsp reduced-fat sour cream
1 tsp grated lime rind
1 1/2 tsp fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 garlic glove, minced

1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 tsp ground red pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 pounds red snapper fillets (I used tilapia fillets)
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
2 cups shredded cabbage

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Prepare crema by combining the first 8 ingredients in a small bowl; set aside.

Combine cumin and next 5 ingredients (through garlic powder) in a small bowl; rub spice mixture evenly over both sides of fish.  Place fish on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Bake at 425 for 9 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.  Place fish in serving bowl; break into pieces with a fork.  Heat tortillas to desired warmth.  Divide fish evenly among tortillas; top each with cabbage and crema.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Made A Classic Cobb Salad

When I first really started cooking about 5 years ago, I started out with really basic recipes and great to love the Kraft Food recipes.  I came across this recipe in the salad file of my recipe notebook and realized I never made it.  5 years ago I would have NEVER subtracted or added anything to a recipe - even a salad - on the chance that I might ruin the dish.  These days I love making the recipe my own.  To top off a great recipe is a beautiful bowl to serve it in.  I have enjoyed this Crate & Barrel wedding present from my sweet friends, Tracy & Caroline.  Thanks girls and enjoy the Cobb!!

12 cups mixed baby salad greens
6 oz. deli turkey breast, shredded
2 avocados, chopped
1/2 red bell pepper chopped
1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
8 slices bacon, crumbled
3 hard-boiled eggs, diced
1 cup shredded cheese 
Light Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing

Wash & dry lettuce.  Cook bacon while chopping vegetables.  After slicing, chopping and dividing out arrange contents of salad in serving bowl.  Toss salad and add dressing to individual portions. 

Friday, April 15, 2011

Made Blackberry Cobbler

I love cobbler!  It reminds me of my Grandma and Sunday lunch at her house.  She would typically make it the night before and leave it to cool on an old, round, metal pan - I can see it like it was yesterday.  This cobbler does not include GMa's homemade crust or nostalgic pan but it was made using another great cook's recipe.  This dessert was specially made tonight as we hosted our long-time friends Shane, Ruthie and little muffin, Jack.  This simple recipe (if you buy the crust) is fun to make and perfect for any occasion.  Thank you, Sherry for walking me through the steps and Leanne for bringing leftovers last weekend, creating my inspiration to try this great recipe.  

16 ounces fresh blackberries
2 refrigerated pie crusts
2 tablespoons cornstarch (heaping)
1 2/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
4 tablespoons butter

Mix dry ingredients first, cornstarch and sugar.  Rinse blackberries and then in saucepan combine blackberries, water, & dry ingredients.  Cook over med-high heat and bring to a boil continually stirring until thick and bubbly.  Remove pan from heat and pour mixture into pie crust, lining your baking dish.  (I used a pan approximately 7x11)  Top with butter than top layer of pie crust.  Sprinkle crust with sugar.  Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.

Served with Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Made Mediterranean Summer Salad

My own version of the salad with delicious salmon off the grill
MyRecipes photo
This is one of the best summer salads I have ever made.  Top with salmon hot off the grill and you will blow away your dinner party guests.  8 ounces of orzo is quite a bit but if you are wanting to go light on the pasta, set a portion aside and take it to work for lunch with a little marinara sauce.  MyRecipes is one of my favorite sights combining Southern Living, Cooking Light, Real Simple recipes and more.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Made Fettuccine Alfredo With Bacon

myrecipes from Cooking Light
It was a first time for me making Alfredo sauce.  My next step will be a Central Market cooking class specific to sauces. Mastering this art must be in the timing of cooking, mixing, boiling, stirring, etc.  B and I really enjoyed this dish with a great treat of our home-grown parsley and grilled chicken to top off the dish.  With this filling entree, there is no need for a side but enjoy a filling, summer pasta in Fettuccine Alfredo With Bacon from Cooking Light.

Helpful hint: Cook bacon first and set aside.  Cook pasta towards the end as I think it might perform better when tossing with the Alfredo sauce.