Saturday, September 30, 2017

Baked Tomato, Mushroom & Spinach Tortellini

Herb and cheese filled tender tortellini slathered in a rich tomato sauce with sautéed mushrooms and spinach baked with cheese, what more do I need to tell you about this amazing dish?

It really speaks for itself, just look at it! It is a thing of beauty.

I will eat pasta all day everyday, but bake it with some cheese and well it takes it to a whole new level.

This dish came together super fast. I quickly sauteed the mushrooms and spinach while the pasta was cooking, added the pasta and the sauce to the sauteed veggies added a few spices and that was that.

Just pour the whole mess into a baking dish and throw some grated cheese on top. Bake for about 25 minutes and you too can have this amazing cheesy pasta!

What you need,

1 pkg. fresh tortellini, I used Herb & Cheese but you use whatever flavor you like

1 jar of your favorite tomato based pasta sauce, I used Classico Tomato with Basil

¼ cup milk (I used 1%)

2 tbsp. butter

2 cups button mushrooms, sliced

4 cups fresh baby spinach leaves

½ tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. sugar

1 tsp. salt

½ tsp. pepper

2 cups grated cheese, I used a combo of cheddar and mozzarella

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cook the Pasta according to package directions, less 2 minutes, drain and set aside. They pasta will cook a little more in the oven so under cook it a little so it doesn’t get too overcooked.

In a large non-stick pan, melt the butter over medium high heat. Add the sliced mushrooms to the pan and cook for 4-5 minutes until softened and starting to brown. Add the spinach and sauté until wilted. Season with the salt and pepper and garlic powder.  Add the tomato sauce, milk and sugar to the pan and stir to combine.  Add the cooked pasta and stir to coat. Season with additional salt and pepper if needed.

Pour the pasta into a baking dish, sprinkle it with the cheese and bake in the oven for 25 minutes. I like to broil the pasta for a few minutes at the end just to brown up the cheese!

Ok people, there you have it, a wonderful hearty pasta dish you and your whole family will love!

Add a nice Cesar salad on the side and you win at dinner!



Sunday, September 24, 2017

Oatmeal Krispie Chocolate Chip Cookies

Sometimes you just need a cookie… or like 3!

These Oatmeal Krispie Chocolate Chip Cookies are just what you need.

They are nice and crisp on the edges and super chewy in the middle, which I love.
The addition of rice krispies really adds a nice texture!

What you need,

1 ½ cups butter (I used salted cause I always do!)

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup white sugar

2 large eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt (I only used ½ a tsp. because I used salted butter!)

2 cups all purpose flour

2 cups quick oats

2 cup rice Krispie cereal

2 cups chocolate chips

Heat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silpat mat.

In a large bowl beat the butter and both sugars together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one a time and beat until well incorporated.

Stir in the vanilla.

In a separate bowl whisk together the baking powder, baking soda, salt and flour.

Stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture until combined. Add the oats and cereal and mix well. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Drop the batter by the heaping tablespoon onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake 9-10 minutes until golden around the edges but still soft in the middle.

Cool on the pan for 3-4 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

You can stash the cooled cookies in an airtight container for about 3 days, not like they will last that long! Or you could freeze them 2 per little zip lock bag and save them to toss in school and work lunches. I know a little pack of these cookies would brighten my day!

What else can I say… MMMMM Cookies! Really really good cookies!



Sunday, September 17, 2017

Nectarine Oatmeal Muffin

Wow, I have been a very bad blogger lately. But it was summer and I had sunshine to enjoy!

Today it is feeling very fall-esque! Which isn’t a bad thing, I am looking forward to warm sweaters and big bowls of soup!

For me Fall equals muffins, all kinds of muffins! I wanted to use up the last of the summer fruit, some juicy sweet nectarines and pair them with some warm fall spices, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.

What you need,
Click Here To Print

2 cups all purpose flour

¾ cup granulated sugar

½ tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

½ tsp. ground nutmeg

½ tsp. ground ginger

1 cup quick oats

3 nectarines peeled and diced pretty small

2 large eggs

1 cup milk (I used 1%)

1 tsp. vanilla extract

¼ cup vegetable oil

Heat your oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 muffin tins with paper liners. (I got 20 muffins)

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and oats.

In a separate bowl whisk the eggs, milk, vanilla and vegetable oil. 

Gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry until just combined. Then add the diced nectarine and fold to combine.

Scoop the batter evenly into the muffin papers. Sprinkle the tops with a little coarse sugar if you like, I did!

Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.

Let the muffins cool on a wire rack completely before packing them up.

I like to wrap the muffins individually in saran wrap then put them in a large zip top bag and stash them in the freezer for lunches or snacks later on!

These muffins are beyond amazing. Nice and moist with such great warm fall flavors.

Happy Fall everyone.



Sunday, August 6, 2017

Twice Baked Broccoli Cheddar Potatoes

I have been trying to make one or 2 meatless meals a week lately. Not for any health reasons just because I am kind of tired of meat!

I decided to whip up some twice baked potatoes and thought hey why not toss some cheese and broccoli in there, so I did.

Man, these potatoes, they are amazing. So crisp and creamy and full of flavor. They were really filling and a nice mixed green salad paired perfectly with them.

There is only the 2 of us so I just made one large, I mean BIG potato, but if you have a family just double or triple the recipe!

What you need,

1 large russet potato, washed and dried

1 tbsp. olive oil

½ tsp kosher salt

2 tbsp. milk or cream

2 heaping tbsp. sour cream

1 tbsp. butter

¼ cup grated cheddar cheese + a little extra for topping

½ cup or broccoli chopped into very small florets

Salt and Pepper to taste

Poke holes all over your potato, then microwave it on high for 3-5 minutes until it starts to soften.  Then rub it in olive oil and sprinkle it all over with salt and place it on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees until the skin is crisp and the potato is fully cooked through, 30-45 minutes. I rolled my potato over halfway through.

Remove the potato from the oven and let it cool until you can handle it.  Cut in half lengthwise. Carefully scoop out the middles leaving a little potato around the edge to hold the filling in when you re-stuff it.

Mash the inside of the potato with the milk, sour cream and butter. Stir in the cheese and broccoli and season to your taste with salt and pepper. Try not to eat all the filling with a spoon, I almost did, damn it was tasty!

Re-stuff the potatoes with the filling, heaping it in there. Top with a little extra cheese and bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes until it is hot and melty.

Stuff in your face… well maybe make a salad and have that too…

These potatoes, what can I say, just look at them, they are a thing of beauty.

They taste like a dream.

You won’t miss the meat in this meal at all! I promise!



Saturday, July 22, 2017

Grilled Sausage & Veggies Packs

In my quest to make decent dinners without turning on the oven I whipped up these totally delicious, super simple tinfoil packs. They are full of smoked sausage and lots of veggies. You can prep them the day before and then all you have to do is toss them on the BBQ for 20-25 minutes and you have a complete meal, no fuss no muss!

And feel free to use whatever veggies you like I think the possibilities are endless here!

What you need,

1 lb. pre-cooked sausage, cut into 1-inch rounds

(I used Harvest Smoked Summer Sausage but you can use whatever you like, chicken or turkey would be awesome!)

1 ear corn, cut into 1-inch rounds

1 red or orange bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces

6 button mushrooms, halved or quartered depending on how big they are

1 small zucchini cut into 1-inch rounds

2 medium potatoes cut into ½ inch pieces

2 tbsp. olive oil

2 tbsp. butter

1 tsp. season salt

½ tsp. black pepper

1 tsp. dried basil

½ tsp. granulated garlic

½ tsp. granulated onion

In a large bowl combine all the veggies and sausage. Drizzle with the oil and spices and toss well to coat.

Using a double layer of tinfoil divide the mixture into 4 packs. Dollop ½ tablespoon of butter over each pack. Close each pack tightly. Try to make them pretty flat.

I stashed mine in the fridge overnight and cooked them the next day for dinner…

Heat your grill to medium.  Cook the packs for 10 minutes then flip and cook for another 10 minutes. I flipped mine a final time for 5 more minutes. Remove them from the grill and carefully open each up, watch that steam, it is HOT!

I emptied all the pack onto a platter and served them that way, but you could serve each person their own pack.

I served mine with a little sour cream and a little mustard.

This is going to be a weekly summer dinner in my house. We ate it all up! I thought for sure there would be left overs but nope, we scarfed it all down!

There was so much flavour the veggies were perfectly tender and the sausage got a little crisp.

Absolutely fabulous! And I didn’t have to use the oven! WhooHoo!