Sunday, January 3, 2016

Tessa's Ham and Bean Soup

In all honesty, this recipe is copied from However, I've asked Tessa to send me the recipe twice. She says it is most like the soup her Grandma made. We liked it the first time when I had no clue what I was doing and with two more ham bones in our house, I will be trying this again.

1# dry pinto beans
8 cups water
1 large, meaty ham hock
1 large onion chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp salt, or to taste
1/4 tsp pepper

1) Place the beans and water in a large stock pot. Add the ham hock, onion, garlic, and spices. Bring to a boil. Boil 2 minutes. Cover and remove from heat. Let stand for an hour.

2) Return the pot to the heat and bring to a boil. Cook for three hours. The longer it cooks the thicker it will be. (My 1st attempt was less than three hours.)

3) Removethe ham hock from the water and let cool.  Remove meat from the bone and put it back in the pot. Discard the bone (give to Winston).

4) Adjust seasoning and serve with cornbread.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Pork Fajitas

I purchased THIS book at a book sale.  I have not been impressed by the ability to freeze the recipes but this recipe is simple enough to make anytime and enjoyable.  I have modified it to make it more useful for my family (i.e. in the crockpot). 

2 lb pork tenderloin
1/2 c. cider vinegar
1/4 brown sugar
1 t. salt
1 t. garlic, minced
1/2 t. paprika
1/2 t. crushed red pepper

Place the pork tenderloin in the crock pot and sprinkle spices over top.   Place on low for 8 to 10 hrs.

red bell pepper, strips
green bell pepper, strips
onion, sliced
fajita seasoning
Toppings: shredded Cheddar cheese, avocado, sour cream salsa

Saute peppers and onions with fajita seasoning and oil.

Shred pork in the crockpot.

Heat tortillas.

Serve pork, pepper and onions in tortillas with toppings.

Freezer Meal Chickpea Stew

THIS meal caught my eye on a Buzzfeed listicle.  We made it for a freezer meal get-together and it was a winner.  Everyone loved it.

1 yellow onion, diced
1 T. oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 t. cinnamon, turmeric, cumin, coriander, ground cloves
salt, to taste
1 t. ginger
1 red chili
15 oz diced tomatoes
15 oz chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 large sweet potato, peeled and 1in. chunks
15 oz light coconut milk

Jasmine rice, to serve with

In skillet, heat oil and onion for 3-4 minutes.
Add garlic, chili, ginger and spices.  Heat.
Add all other ingredients. Simmer for 30 to 50 minutes.  (Taste after 20 minutes to see if you want more spices added.  Maybe even some cayenne pepper.)

Let cool. Package in gallon freezer bags.
We also packaged a cup of Jasmine rice in a small ziplock bag to freeze along side the dish so everything would be together when this meal was needed.

To reheat, thaw in fridge overnight and warm on stove.  Serve over cooked rice with a  parsley garnish, if on hand.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014


I have not made this yet. But, it is on the menu for this week.

Gyro meat: 1 med onion, 2 lbs ground lamb or beef, 1 tbsp minced garlic, 1 tbsp dried rosemary, 1 tbsp dried marjoram, 2 tsp kosher salt, 1/2 tsp pepper -- Process onion in food processor 10-15 sec.  Squeeze out all juice using a tea or paper towel.  Return onion to food processor and add meat, garlic, and spices and process until it is a fine paste - about a minute - scraping as needed.  Cook in the oven in meatloaf form - 325 deg for 60-75 min (internal temp of 165 to 170) - thinly slice when done and serve in pita bread.

Tzatziki sauce: 16 oz plain yogurt, 1 med cucumber peeled, seeded and finely chopped, 4 cloves garlic, minced, 1 tbsp olive oil, 2 tbsp red wine vinegar, 5-6 minced mint leaves, pinch kosher salt.  Drain yogurt over a tea towel for 2 hours in the fridge.  Place cucumber in a tea towel and squeeze out liquid.  In a medium bowl, combine the yogurt, cucumber, olive oil, salt, garlic, vinegar and mint.  Stir well - can keep in fridge for up to a week.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Summer Spiced Healthy Zucchini Muffins

1 cup whole-wheat flour
2/3 cup all-purpose white flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/3 cups shredded zucchini
1/2 cup milk
2 Tbsp oil
2 Tbsp honey
1 large egg
Preheat over to 400. Coat muffin tin with oil. Mix dry ingredients. Add zucchini, milk, oil, honey, and egg. Mix together. Spoon into muffin cups. Bake 20 minutes.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Green Chili Desabrada

1 3-4# beef roast (Sirloin tip or anything pretty lean.)
1 10 oz cangreen chilies
2 Anaheim peppers, blistered and peeled
1 Tb kosher salt
1 Tb fresh cilantro
1 29 oz can diced tomatoes
2 large onions, chopped
1 Tb cumin
1 Tb fajita seasoning (I used chili powder and a little more cumin)
1/4-1 tsp. Pepper to taste

Corn tortilla or flour
Black beans
Shredded cheddar
Chopped romaine
Chopped tomatoes
Sour cream

If you start with a frozen roast, start cooking the night before with a 1/2 cup water. Get up in the middle of the night to flip it.
Or start with a fresh roast, cook roast on high 6 hours.
Shred meat, remove fat and bone.
Return meat to crockpot. Add chilies, garlic, salt, cilantro, tomatoes, onions, cumin, fajita seasoning, and pepper. Cook on low 8 or more hours or on high 4-5 hours.
We had it as burritos. But, the Penzys magazine this came from suggested serving it over corn tortillas stuffed with cheese and beans. Also, I'm thinking it would be good as a salad topping.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Italian Breakfast Casserole

What You'll Need:
13 x 9 glass pan, sprayed with Pam cooking spray
1 loaf Italian bread, cubed
1 pound Italian sausage (pork, turkey or chicken)
2 cups roasted red peppers, cut into 1" strips
8 green onions, chopped
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
6 eggs (or Egg Beaters)
1 ½ cup non-fat milk
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
How To Prepare:
Spray 13 x 9 pan with Pam cooking spray and set aside. Brown sausage in frying pan. Drain fat and pat sausage with paper towel to remove excess grease. Sauté red peppers and green onion until onions are soft. Cover bottom of pan with layer of bread cubes, sausage, red peppers, green onion, and cheese. Repeat until you're out of ingredients. End with layer of cheese.
In a bowl, mix together eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Pour over top of layered casserole. Cover and refrigerate overnight. In the morning, preheat oven to 325 degrees. Bake for one hour.
Serve with coffee and fresh fruit. Serves 8.