Monday, September 22, 2008

Kelly's Zucchini Casserole

Kelly B. gave me this recipe. It is creamy and crunchy and the perfect way to use up all of those zucchini's from your garden.

6 cups zucchini, peeled and chopped into chunks
1-2 cups shredded carrots
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 can cream of chicken soup
16 oz. container sour cream
2 cubes butter
1 pkg. Stove Top Stuffing (chicken flavor)

Melt butter in saucepan. Pour in dry stuffing mix and saute for a few minutes until slightly browned and crispy. Set aside. Fill another saucepan with hot water and bring to a boil. Add zucchini, carrots and onion. Boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and drain veggies. Stir in the soup and sour cream. In a 13x9 pan, pour half of the stuffing mixture, top with veggie mixture and then sprinkle rest of the stuffing mixture on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

*To make this a little less fattening, I have used only one cube of butter for browning the stuffing and have used low fat sour cream. It still tastes great. Low fat cream of chicken soup could also be used, but doesn't taste quite as good.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Creamy Tomato Basil Soup

Fresh garden tomatoes make this soup extra delicious and healthy. When I want it more hearty, I add mini pasta. This recipe mimics one of my favorite soups served at Zuppa's, a local organic soup and salad restaurant.

3 T. olive oil

1/4 cup butter

1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

12-15 fresh tomatoes, peeled an chopped

3-4 cups chicken broth

1/2 c. fresh basil leaves

3/4 tsp. salt

pepper to taste

1/2 c. whipping cream

Saute onion in buter and olive oil. Cook for 7-8 minutes until tender. Add garlic, tomatoes, chicken broth, basil leaves, salt and pepper. Simmer for 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and puree mixture in a blender or food processor. Return to saucepan and bring to a simmer. Stir in whipping cream. If desired, add any type of small pasta (precooked).

*To peel tomatoes, dip them in boiling water for 30 seconds. Skin should easily peel off.

Susan's Seasoned Chicken

This chicken melts in your mouth and is so easy to prepare. Serve on a bed of rice or with mashed potatoes. The recipe was shared with me by my good friend Susan, an old Park School friend.

6-8 chicken breasts
1/3 c. + 2 T. butter
1 tsp. celery salt
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. paprika
1 1/2 c. whipping cream (plain)
1/3 cup breadcrumbs
Melt butter. Add seasonings to butter. Roll chicken breasts in flour, then in seasoned butter mixture (save leftover butter!). Place in a greased pan. Pour whipping cream over chicken, cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes. Mix breadcrumbs with the leftover seasoned butter. Remove chicken from oven, sprinkle breadcrumb mixture all over the top. Can also sprinkle slivered, toasted almonds on top as well. Return to oven and cook 10 minutes longer until breadcrumbs brown a bit.

Homemade Eclairs

I have been making cream puffs since I was a teenager. It's really fun and easy. You can fill them with pudding for a great eclair, but you can also fill them with chicken salad.
Cream Puffs:
In a small saucepan, bring to a boil:
1 cube butter
1 cup water
1/8 tsp. salt
Once boiling, add: 1 cup flour
Stir until the mixture forms a big smooth ball. Remove from heat and cool 10 minutes.
One at a time, whip in 4 eggs until mixture is smooth and creamy.
Place by teaspoonful onto a cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes until well browned. Cool.
1 small package vanilla or chocolate pudding
2 cups cool whip or real whipping cream (whipped and sweetened)
Make pudding according to package directions. Fold in cool whip. Fill cream puffs
Chocolate Fudge Topping:
1/4 c. butter
3-4 T. milk
2-3 T. cocoa powder
2 cups powdered sugar
Melt butter, milk and cocoa powder in saucepan. When it begins to boil, remove from heat and beat in powdered sugar with a whisk. If it is too thin, add more powdered sugar, too thick, add more milk. Drizzle over cream puffs.

Frito Fiesta Salad

My friend Melissa's mom, Marilyn, shared this recipe with me. She made it for a faculty potluck when I worked at Park View.

1 lb. hamburger
1 small onion, chopped

1 pkg. taco seasoning (and cook according to package directions)

1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 oz.) can corn, drained
1 ( 15 oz.) can diced tomatoes
1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce

Simmer for 1/2 hour.

Assemble like a Taco Salad using Frito's corn chips, meat sauce, lettuce, tomatoes, grated cheddar cheese, olives, avocados
Top with ranch dressing, sour cream, salsa

Strawberry Pizza

This is a great way to use up fresh strawberries. I like to drizzle chocolate syrup over the top when I serve it.

6 T. butter or margarine
1/2 c. sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. almond
1 1/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt

Cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs and extracts. Combine dry ingredients. Add to dry mixture and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Roll out onto a 12 inch pizza pan. Build up edges slightly. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-22 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool


1 pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. powdered sugar
2 c. sliced fresh strawberries
1 c. sugar
1/4 c. cornstarch
2 c. crushed strawberries

Beat cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth. Spread over crust. Arrange sliced strawberries around on top. In a saucepan, bring the sugar, cornstarch and crushed strawberries to a boil. Cook and stir for 2 minutes until thickened. Cool slightly and spoon over the sliced strawberries. Refrigerate until set.