Saturday, February 28, 2009

Cake Balls

These are fun to make and are perfect for any occasion - I can always think of a perfectly good reason to make these!!! There are quite a few variations on how to make them, but I've found the best one here (thanks to my friend Lindsey who introduced these little delights!) Here's the basic recipe, but click on the website for all sorts of tips and different flavors to try! These are very simple, but time-consuming. However, you can begin the process before the event. For example, I needed the cake balls on Saturday, and so I baked the cake on Thursday morning, chilled in fridge all day, rolled into balls and froze that night, and dipped the mixture in the almond bark on Friday and they were ready for Saturday! They do not need to be refrigerated once made. The ones I made were strawberry cake with strawberry frosting and chocolate coating; chocolate cake (devil's food), vanilla frosting, and vanilla coating. Hobby Lobby sells the colored coating and have all sorts of good colors.
Cake Balls
1 box cake
1 can frosting
almond bark/candy coating

1. Bake the cake according to directions.

2. While warm, crumble the cake in a mixing bowl with a fork, and then use a hand mixer to make into an even finer mixture.

3. Mix in 3/4 can frosting.

4. Chill mixture for 2 hours.

5. Roll into balls - about 1" to 1 1/2 "- and freeze for at least 6 hours.

6. Dip in almond bark and set on wax paper to cool. If decorating with sprinkles, decorate as soon as it's dipped so it can "set" in the bark.

7. Enjoy your creation!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Baked Chicken Strips

Baked Chicken Strips with baked potatoes and green beans

The chicken strips are great because the ingredients are all pretty much staples; I love dipping mine in honey - yum!

1/4 cup grated parmesan
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup bread crumbs
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. sugar
dash of thyme, paprika, & lemon pepper
6 TBS butter, melted
chicken tenders, or chicken breasts cut into nuggets

*Melt butter in pie dish
*Stir dry ingredients in another pie dish
*Dip chicken into butter, then dry ingredients

*Arrange on a cookie sheet and bake at 425 for 20-25 minutes (I flip halfway through)

Low Fat Chicken Fettuccini Alfredo

This recipe is from the Kraft foods website.
Chicken fettuccini

1/2 lb. fettuccine, uncooked
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
1-1/4 cups fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
4 tsp. flour
4 oz. (1/2 of 8-oz.) PHILADELPHIA Neufchatel Cheese, cubed
3 Tbsp. KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese, divided
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. pepper

COOK pasta as directed on package.
MEANWHILE, heat large nonstick skillet sprayed with cooking spray on medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 5 to 7 min. or until chicken is done, stirring occasionally. Remove from skillet. Mix broth and flour in same skillet. Stir in Neufchatel cheese, 2 Tbsp. Parmesan, garlic powder and pepper; cook 2 min. or until mixture boils and thickens, stirring constantly with whisk. Stir in chicken.
DRAIN pasta; place in large bowl. Add chicken mixture; toss to coat. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan.

Special Extra
Sprinkle with 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley just before serving.
Prepare as directed, using whole wheat fettuccine.
Stir in 2 cups chopped cooked broccoli before serving.

Turkey Chili

This is a recipe from my sister, Brittany. This would taste great with fritos and cornbread!

Turkey Chili
1 package ground turkey
2 cans black beans
1 can of your favorite brand Salsa
1 can tomatoes
1 tablespoon chili powder
chopped onions (optional)

Cook the turkey meat. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 mins. Top with shredded cheese.

Tator Tot Casserole

I know that this will be kid-friendly once my picky eater decides to try food!!
Tator Tot Casserole
1 lb. ground beef
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 lb. tator tots
cheddar cheese
Brown meat; drain. Pour in an 8x8 dish. Add soup and mix with beef. Cover with a layer of tator tots. Bake at 350 for 30 mins. Cover with cheese and bake for another 10-15 minutes, until cheese is melted.

Pork Shoulder

Easy, yummy Southern Living Recipe - may serve on toasted buns or with cornbread (or both!)

Pork Shoulder (I usually find this at Tom Thumb, and sometimes it's called shoulder pork roast)
3-4 pound shoulder pork
18 oz. bottle barbecue sauce
1 can coke

Put pork, coke and sauce in crock pot. Cook on low for 7-9 hours (depends on crock pot - mine is usually done after 7 hours)

Good Rice

This title was created by Matt who LOVES this rice!

*1 can beef broth
*1 can french onion soup (Campbells)
*3/4 can water
*1 1/2 cups Uncle Ben's uncooked, converted rice
*1 stick margarine

Melt margarine in a 13x9 dish. Add rice, soups, and water. Stir. Bake at 350 for an hour, or until the water is absorbed.

Black Bean Chicken

Ashley Krieg gave me this recipe at a wedding shower for me where all the guests had to bring a recipe. It continues to be a Northcutt favorite! I serve this with the Good Rice and broccoli.

Black Bean chicken

*4 chicken breasts
*2 cans black beans, semi drained
*4 slices pepper jack cheese
*cumin and paprika

Spray baking dish with pam. Put chicken in dish and sprinkle with paprika and cumin. Place cheese slices on top of each breast. Pour black beans on top. Cover and bake at 350 for about 45 mins to an hour, whenever chicken is cooked through.

Saucy Chicken

Saucy Chicken

This is similar to the cream cheese crock pot chicken, so it can be served with rice or noodles - I'll do noodles this week, either an Egg noodle, fettucini, or linguine (whichever I can find in wheat).

4 chicken breasts
1/2 stick butter
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup beer
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 (4 oz) can mushrooms

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Brown in butter and place in glass baking dish. Mix remaining ingredients over burner until smooth. Pour over chicken and bake at 350 for 1 hour.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Cream Cheese Crock Pot Chicken

Cream Cheese Crock Pot Chicken

boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I use fat free)
block of cream cheese, cubed (I use 1/3 less fat)
1 packet dry Italian seasoning
4.5 oz. can chopped green chiles
1 cup milk (I use 2%)
serve over rice or noodles!
Whenever I use my crock pot, I use these handy liners - I mean, seriously, could cooking with a crock pot BE any easier?? (Friends, anybody??) Put chicken in crock pot. Mix other ingredients - try to get the cream cheese as mixed in as possible (it will still be a little lumpy). Pour over chicken and bake for 5-6 hours on low. Serve with rice or noodles.

Meatloaf and Baked Potatoes

Recipe thanks to Jessica - Matt normally doesn't like meatloaf; it has to be a very simple one, and this looks like one he'll like. I'll serve it with baked potatoes and a green veggie. I have to tell you the ABSOLUTE BEST way to bake a potato: wash, pierce, and rub butter and salt over the potato. DON'T cover with foil, but bake on a foil lined pan (I just use an 8x8 and sometimes will spray the foil with PAM) at 425 for an hour and a half, flipping half-way. The outside forms a hard shell and the inside is like mashed potatoes - it is SOOOOO yummy! What I'll do with this meal is just cook the potatoes longer since the meatloaf needs a 400 degree oven.

1 ½ lb. ground beef
1 2-oz envelop onion soup mix
1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend
2 eggs
1 ½ cup saltines, finely ground
1/3 cup water
Directions: Heat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the beef, soup mix, cheese, eggs and saltines. Add the water combine. Transfer the meat mixture to a baking dish and form it into a 9-inch loaf. Bake until cooked through, about 40 minutes.