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Category Archives: Main Dish

Simple Sesame Noodles

The hubs and I are just about to celebrate four months of wedded bliss.  What has changed in the past few months since beginning our married life?  Not too much, actually.  My last name…and the fact that we’ve started budgeting.  We have entered into marriage with an attempt to curtail our spending a bit (or at least track what we are spending money on) and I have become the budget queen.  I love my Excel budget spreadsheet!

I am currently reading Financial Peace Revisited by Dave Ramsey.  Several of my friends have taken the Dave Ramsey course and I like a lot of his methods.  I would say we are somewhat following his teaching on budgeting.  It’s definitely a process but a great exercise for the hubs and I to go through together.

So, here we are at the end of the month, and we have spent all of our “food” category moolah.  Last night, I was starving and in a somewhat cranky mood that only food could make better.  I could have gone to the grocery store or we could have gone out to dinner, but that kind of would have defeated the purpose of the budget…so I tried to get creative with what we had on hand.

Enter the Pioneer Woman.  I had bookmarked her recipe for Simple Sesame Noodles and last night, as my stomach was growling, and I was trying to talk myself out of spending $5 on a foot long sub from Subway, I remembered the post.

And sure enough, I had everything I needed at home!  This meal was quick and easy, plus made plenty of leftovers for lunch today.  You could easily add a protein or some veggies to the meal, but I went just for the noodles this time around.  And, I recommend adding a tablespoon of peanut butter for even more deliciousness.

Simple Sesame Noodles

  • 12 ounces, fluid thin noodles, cooked and drained
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons pure sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot chili oil
  • 4 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 4 whole green onions, sliced thin

Whisk all ingredients (except noodles and green onions) together in a bowl. Taste and adjust ingredients as needed.  Pour sauce over warm noodles and toss to coat.  Sprinkle with green onions and serve.

Source: The Pioneer Woman

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Posted by on February 28, 2013 in Main Dish

 

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Pineapple Tofu Stir-Fry

There is something about Sunday nights during football season that make me crave Chinese food.  And that craving always involves take out.  The hubs and I are trying really hard to start 2013 off right and attempt to eat in more than we eat out.  Unfortunately, having Chinese food delivered does not count as eating in…it’s a shame really.

But, tonight I found a recipe in one of our new cookbooks (EatingWell Serves Two) that brought all the goodness of delivery to our house without waiting an hour for delivery or having to tip the driver. A quick, healthier version similar to my usual order of Sweet and Sour Chicken (minus the chicken) that also let me try my hand at cooking tofu for the first time!  Though I don’t think we will be becoming vegetarians anytime soon…this was a great meal!  Next time I’ll add a pinch of red pepper flakes for a little spice, but otherwise, it was nearly perfect.

Pineapple Tofu Stir-Fry

  • 1 8-ounce can pineapple chunks, 3 tablespoons juice reserved
  • 5 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 7 ounces extra-firm, water-packed tofu, drained, rinsed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 3 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons minced ginger
  • 1 large bell pepper, cut into 1/2-by-2-inch strips
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped

Whisk the pineapple juice, vinegar, soy sauce, ketchup, and brown sugar in a small bowl until smooth. Place tofu in a medium bowl; toss with 2 tablespoons of sauce. Marinate for at least 5 minutes or up to 30 minutes. Add cornstarch to the remaining sauce and whisk until smooth.

Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Transfer the tofu to the skillet. Cook the tofu, stirring every 1 to 2 minutes, until golden brown, 7 to 9 minutes total. Transfer tofu to a plate.

Add the remaining oil to the skillet and heat over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add bell pepper and onion, cooking until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Pour in the sauce and cook, stirring, until thickened, about 30 seconds. Add the tofu and pineapple and cook, stirring gently, until heated through, about 2 minutes more.

Serve over brown rice.

Slightly adapted from EatingWell Serves Two

 
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Posted by on December 30, 2012 in Main Dish

 

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Mexican Stuffed Peppers with Enchilada Sauce

It’s been a busy couple of weeks in our household.  Why?  Well, my sous chef, Tim, and I got married.  It was an absolutely perfect day where we were surrounded by those we love most in the world.  After a relaxing mini-moon, we are back at home, getting in a routine once again.

Tonight, it was so nice to spend Saturday evening at home and cook a delicious meal.  We used our new knives, new pots, new casserole baking dish, and our new mandolin.  It was amazing!  And, the meal was served on our brand new plates.  We are definitely feeling like grown-ups now!

Tonight, I made Mexican Stuffed Peppers with Enchilada Sauce.  Using quinoa and black beans to stuff the peppers and topping the peppers with cheese and enchilada sauce equal a tasty, light Mexican meal.  These were easy to prepare and we will definitely make them again.

Image

  • 4 bell peppers (any color), sliced in half stem-to-tip, seeds removed
  • 1 cup quinoa, uncooked
  • ½ medium onion, diced
  • 1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1 (4 oz) can diced green chiles
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, minced
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 cup Monterrey Jack, grated
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 (28 oz) can red enchilada sauce

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Add quinoa and onion to a large saucepan with 2 cups of water and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Turn heat down to simmer, cover, and cook for 15 minutes. Fluff quinoa with a fork.

While quinoa is cooking, microwave pepper halves 2-3 minutes to soften slightly.

Pour quinoa/onion mixture into a mixing bowl. Stir in black beans, tomato, green chiles, cilantro, salt, and pepper.

Pour enchilada sauce into a 9×13″ baking dish. Divide filling among peppers and place peppers on top of the enchilada sauce. Sprinkle with cheese.

Cover the pan with foil and bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Remove foil and cook for 5 minutes longer. Drizzle peppers with enchilada sauce and serve immediately.

Source: One Lovely Life

 
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Posted by on November 17, 2012 in Main Dish

 

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Chicken with a Sun-dried Tomato Cream Sauce

I think it’s safe to say we’ve been in a food rut recently. We’re eating more and more of our staples—tacos, grilled cheese and tomato soup, breakfast for dinner, and Illegal Pete’s—you get the idea.  Creativity in the kitchen is definitely lacking.  The past few weeks, I’ve been forcing myself to cook something new a couple nights a week.  It’s been nice trying out new recipes again, and so far, there haven’t been any major mishaps in the kitchen.

I’m a big pasta fan.  Tim, not so much, but he can handle a pasta dish every once and a while. I came across a recipe on Pinterest (my new guilty pleasure…) for Chicken with a Sun-dried Tomato Cream Sauce.

Now, I know the picture does not do this dish justice.  In fact, it’s kind of blah looking (that’s an official cooking and photography term, I promise).  I could have taken more time to stage the photograph, maybe add a few extra sun-dried tomatoes on top.  But, this smelled so good, I couldn’t wait any longer to take a bite. One bite turned into two, and so on and so forth.  Enjoy!

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth, divided
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons sun-dried tomato slivers in oil
  • 1 tablespoon of oil from the jar of sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, flattened into an even thickness

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds. Stir in flour and cook 1 minute.

Gradually stir in 1/2 cup chicken broth, whisking well to avoid clumps. Add cream, tomatoes, thyme, salt, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil and cook 1 minute. Pour into small bowl and set aside. Wipe skillet clean.

Place sun-dried tomato oil in the skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Sauté chicken in oil until browned and cooked through, approximately 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and keep warm.

Add remaining 1/4 cup chicken broth to skillet and bring to a boil. Scrape any brown pieces up with a wooden spoon. Mix in reserved sauce, add chicken and remove from heat once mixture is sufficiently warmed.

Source: Fort Mill SC Living

 
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Posted by on October 18, 2012 in Main Dish

 

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Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos

I have been a bad blogger.  Really bad.  Lots of life events over the past eight months, including an engagement and a move, have changed my priorities. Instead of cooking and blogging, I’ve been planning a wedding.  In case you aren’t aware, planning a wedding takes up a lot of time.  Quick and easy is my new life motto when it comes to food.

When I can prep something on a Saturday or Sunday, then pop it in the oven directly from the freezer later in the week, and have it taste good…I consider it a small victory.  Using a rotisserie chicken makes this even easier!  This is a great appetizer to bring to a football watching party, too.

Photo of baked taquitos, refried beans, and salsa

  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup tomatillo salsa
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 2 tbsp sliced green onions
  • 2 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican flavored cheese
  • Small flour or corn tortillas
  • Pinch of salt

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Combine cream cheese, salsa, lime juice, ground cumin, chili powder, onion powder, and garlic in a large bowl. Once combined, stir in the cilantro, green onions, chicken, and cheese; mix thoroughly.

Heat 2-3 tortillas at a time in the microwave between two paper towels until they are soft enough to roll (about 20 seconds).

Spoon 3 tablespoons of the chicken mixture onto the lower third of a tortilla. Roll the tortilla as tightly as you can.

Place the rolled tortilla seam side down on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining tortillas until the mixture is gone. Make sure the taquitos are not touching each other. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle with kosher salt.

Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until crisp and golden.

Serve with refried beans and salsa for dipping.

To freeze: Before baking, freeze the taquitos in a single layer on a baking sheet for about 20 minutes, then place in a freezer bag.  Taquitos may be stored up to 3 months. To bake a frozen taquito, preheat oven to 425 degrees and bake for 15-20 minutes. No need to thaw first! How easy is that!?

Source: Pennies on a Platter

 
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Posted by on October 13, 2012 in Main Dish

 

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