Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Oriental Chicken and Noodles

  What do I do for supper?  We all have those kinds of days...where you haven't planned anything, it's been a long day, you have homework to help with, make sure laundry is done, etc.  This quick little meal requires few ingredients and little prep.  Perfect for a busy mom (or dad) to fix.  

Now Matt and I just quickly through some ingredients we had on hand together for this meal, and we enjoyed it so much that it will become a go to for those "what do I fix now" meals. 

**First of all, we buy the tenderloins (not the big breast pieces) from Sam's Club.  
No, they aren't organic/range-free/or whatever else.  
They are small pieces, taste good, and are affordable. :)

The only other ingredients you need are pictured here:

What to do:

Cut the chicken up into bite size pieces.

Place it into an electric skillet (350) with a little stir fry oil (canola oil, coconut oil, etc.) will also work.

After your chicken is cooked thoroughly, add your noodles.

Add your noodles to your chicken.   We used Udon Noodles.  They take little time to cook.
When they are heated through, add your Oriental Sauce.

*Side note--I think when I will no longer buy many marinades from the grocery store.  Too much corn syrup!  I've noticed that most of the oriental sauces have less ingredients, and no corn syrups. I really like the flavor  to them, when I can't come up with my own marinades.

The sauce we used was a Stir-Fry Sauce made by East-West.  

And it's that quick!  That simple! That delicious!
Now I'm sure if you're family is a veggie eating family, you will want to add some veggies to the pan with your noodles.  My family isn't much on the veggies, but the kids did enjoy this meal! SO winner in my book!

I do enjoy Sesame Seeds, so I sprinkled some on top of mine. :)

One more thing you could do for this meal...
Do you like BD's Mongolian Grill?

They will bring you tortillas for your meal. 
You can serve your oriental chicken/noodles in whole grain tortillas and pretend you are at BD's. :) 
MUCH cheaper!! :)

I hope you enjoy this quick little meal!

Monday, January 20, 2014

White Chocolate Reese Pudding Cookie

So, I've been doing fairly well with this "healthy eating", and I have a few recipes to share with you....BUT....today is not that day.  :)

 You see, once in a while, I have to have a white chocolate Reese.

It's about the only sweet that really tastes good to me anymore---I know, right?
I mean sweets and me used to go together like shoes and socks, peanut butter and jelly, salt and pepper---well, you get the idea.  But these little guys are now my quick go to when I want a little taste, and I'm even trying to get them out of sight out of mind.  SOOO--I thought to myself:

Self (because that's what I call me)--what about trying out a recipe for cookies for the kids?
I called myself BRILLIANT, and set off to fix some cookies.

Allow me to introduce you to this sweet treat.
This is a White Chocolate Reese Cup Cookie, but that's not all--
it's Peanut Butter, and Hershey Kiss Chocolate Drops, and Cheesecake Pudding--
It's a yummy cookie, and the kids are going to love it in their lunches.

Here's a quick glance of the ingredients I used (minus the eggs):
  I guess I told myself if I used sugar free pudding mix, and organic peanut butter all the calories would be deleted. Let's just roll with that idea, shall we? :)

Now I'm all about being a one-bowl mix type of girl, because frankly, the kitchen staff here is lacking.  
***LITTLE RANT:  I feel like the little red hen sometimes.
The mommy asks, "Who will help me fix (insert anything here)"  
"Not I," said the daddy.  "Not I," said the daughter. "Not I," said the son.  
The mommy asks, "Who will help me clean up the mess""
"Not I," said the daddy.  "Not I," said the daughter. "Not I," said the son.  
The mommy asks, "Who wants to try (insert ALMOST anything here)
Well, you know how the story goes! :)
Now this isn't all the time, thank goodness!!

Moving on---as I was saying--I'm all about wanting to use one bowl.
I know some recipes call for you mixing stuff up in separate bowls, but who needs another mess?
I did cut the Reese cups in a bowl--but everything else went into the mixer.
 I do cream and stir together as I add other ingredients, but I really do throw it all in one bowl.
Then fold in your white chocolate reeses and chocolate chips.

 Drop by spoonful onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
 Bake at 350 (or if you have convection oven--325) for 9 minutes.
 Then eat!! :)

White Chocolate Reese Cup Pudding Cookies
3/4 c. butter
1/2 c. peanut butter (but I did use organic--you could also use chunky)
3/4. c. brown sugar
1/4 c. sugar (I opted for pure cane sugar)
2 eggs
1 T. vanilla 
2 1/4 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt 
 1 small box of pudding mix (vanilla, french vanilla, or cheesecake---I used sugar free cheesecake)
White Chocolate Reese Cups (As many as you'd like--can you ever have too many?--I used about 1/4 to 1/2 bag)
1/2 to 1 bag of  chocolate chips (I used Hershey's mini kisses)

 Preheat oven to 350 (or 325 Convection)  Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
 Unwrap white chocolate cups and cut into small pieces (eat the rest?) Cream butter and peanut butter together.   Add sugars, mix.  Add eggs and vanilla, and mix.
Stir in flour, baking soda, and salt.  Mix in Pudding mix.  Fold in White Reese Cups and chocolate chips.

Drop by rounded spoonful onto baking sheets. Bake for 9 minutes and allow to cool for 2 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.  Store in airtight container. 


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Family Fun and Healthier Eating

I'm determined to get my family on track with eating healthier.  They (not me) are chip people!  I can take them or leave them--though I am quite found of Cool Ranch Doritos.  The rest, ahh...I can pass them up.  BUT, when I saw some recipes for apple chips on Pinterest....yep, I needed to make them!!  

The great thing is they are easy to prep and while they bake, I can get other things finished around the house.

I have found several recipes online from various sources and have adapted them to suit our needs.  Again, I always like to find things that all of us can do together.  Therefore this recipe is kid friendly.

Step 1: Preheat your oven to 225 and line baking sheets with parchment paper.

Step 2: Choose your favorite sweet apple. You can even do a variety of flavors.
Step 3: Cut your apples into rings. 
We did this with the mandolin like the baked potato chips, working around the core. 

Step 4:  Choose how you would like to flavor your apple.  Just a hint to add a hint of sweet.
 I'm bad about measurements as I just pour it in until I get the taste/color I'm wanting.
We divided up our apple rings and tried vanilla powder, cinnamon/sugar mixture, and brown sugar.  I liked the taste of all of these on the chips. 

Then sprinkle the rings with your taste of flavor/sweetness.
 You can clearly tell that Connor likes to sprinkle more than just a bit. ;)

Pop them in the oven for an hour, flip and then bake an hour longer.

My hubby liked this picture. 

And there you have it!

2-3 apples (I prefer golden delicious or honeycrisp as they have a sweeter taste)
cinnamon/sugar mixture (1 tsp. cinnamon to 2 1/2 tsp sugar)

Preheat oven to 225. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.  Slice your apples creating rings, leaving skin on. Lay in single layers on your parchment lined baking sheet.  Sprinkle with your cinnamon mixture.  Bake for one hour.  Flip apples over and return to the oven for another hour.   Enjoy!!

Family Fun and Healthier Eating

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Taquitos and Dessert

I'm always looking for new recipes, and recipes where the whole family can get involved.  My family is such a picky bunch that I've thought, if they help make it they will eat it.  I mean they are PICKY!  It's hard to find something that everyone enjoys, and of course I plan the meals, so we HAVE to have something mom likes right? :)
 So..I've stumbled upon several taquito recipes through Pinterest and cookbooks, and they've always sounded good.  HOWEVER, remember my family is a picky bunch!!  Nothing green, no beans, nothing too spicy, nothing to sour... blah blah blah  ---well the list can go on for miles.  So, I had to adapt a few recipes.  This is what we came up with. 

This makes about 6-8 taquitos 
(more or less depending on how full you fill them and how big the tortillas are).

First, using about a pound of lean ground beef (or even opt for turkey burger), brown your meat.
Add your seasonings to your liking.  This part we never measure.  We just grab what we like and throw it in.  I guess this way we never technically have the same meal twice. :)
The steak seasoning was a nice touch.  It had a hint of chilli powder.  We also added a bit of soy.  And yes, that is my black Lava salt...told you..LOVE IT!

 While that's browning, count out your tortillas.  We opted for whole grain.

This part is a simple step for a little helper. After counting out 6-8 tortillas, wrap the stack in a damp paper towel, so that they are covered top to bottom. 
 Place them in a microwave for 1-2 minutes.

Spray a rimmed baking sheet with Pam.  Then using a tortilla, place some shredded cheese in the middle of your tortilla.  We opted for cheddar cheese.  Place your hamburger on top and then roll/fold your tortilla.  Continue until all your tortillas have been assembled.
Spray with Pam again to coat the tops. 
 I also sprinkled a bit of that Texas steak seasoning on top again. 
We convection baked ours for 5 minutes at 400 (or oven bake at 425).
Flip over and return to the oven for another 5-6 minutes.

You can serve with your favorite sauces.  
Taco, Ranch, Ketchup, etc..
I really wanted taco sauce, but I didn't have any on hand-so
we used this.
OH my!!  What a great taste with the taquitos.

The kids wanted to know if I could make them a dessert--WHILE this was baking in the oven.  I thought, really?   You want me to whip something up now--and have it ready to eat with supper?  Apparently they didn't see the difficulty in trying to find something to their liking with what ingredients I had on hand.  SOO, I put myself up for the challenge.

Using the same method as before (damping the paper towel, microwaving the tortilla, spraying pan with Pam) I added bananas, strawberries, and dark chocolate Ghiradelli melting chips and rolled it up, sprayed the top with Pam as well.  I placed it in the oven right along with the taquitos.  Same temperature, same time, same method.

And came out with this.  I drizzled the top with chocolate and powdered sugar--just enough to make it look fancy!!  IT was a hit!  Quick, simple..and somewhat nutritious.  Just what this busy mom/teacher needs!!