Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Chicken Yakisoba

Chicken Yakisoba
Contributed by: Ashley Beer

We tried this recipe tonight and loved it, especially  the heat from the Sriracha Sauce. It looked like a typical stir fry when I started it but it definitely tasted better than the ones I usually make.

I didn't change much from the original recipe, except that I cut the carrots instead of shredding them (I only had baby carrots and I wasn't shredding those tiny things because it would take me all night). Also, I didn't cook the chicken myself, I bought a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store and used the white meat and put the rest aside for another meal this week. I used a full tablespoon of the Siracha which was perfect for my husband and I, but I think it was a little on the hot side for Leena so I might tone it down a bit next time.

All in all, I would recommend this meal and will definitely be making it again.

 Here is the website for the original recipe,

  • ½ head green cabbage $0.41
  • 1 medium yellow onion $0.55
  • 2 medium carrots $0.25
  • 1 small crown broccoli $0.70
  • 2 inches fresh ginger $0.52
  • 1 large chicken breast $1.66
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil $0.08
  • 2 (3 oz.) packages ramen noodles
  • seasoning packets discarded $0.50
  • 1 tsp sesame oil (optional) $0.19
  • ¼ cup soy sauce $0.24
  • ¼ cup worcestershire sauce $0.20
  • 2 Tbsp ketchup $0.05
  • (up to) 1 Tbsp sriracha hot sauce $0.26
  • 1 Tbsp sugar $0.02
  1. Before you begin, prepare the meat and vegetables for stir frying. Peel the ginger with either a vegetable peeler or the side of a spoon and then grate it with a cheese grater. Peel and grate the carrots with a large holed cheese grater. Remove the core from the cabbage and cut into thin strips. Slice the onion into thin strips. Cut the broccoli into bite-sized pieces. Slice the chicken into thin strips.
  2. Begin boiling a medium pot full of water for the noodles. Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the grated ginger, saute for about 30 seconds to one minute (its okay if it sticks to the pan but don’t let it burn). Add the chicken strips and cook until they are no longer pink (about five minutes).
  3. Once the chicken is cooked through, add all of the vegetables. Stir and cook until wilted (about 5-10 minutes). Meanwhile, once the water boils, add the noodles and cook just until tender (2-3 minutes). Drain, return to the pot (with the heat turned off) and toss with the sesame oil to keep from sticking.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, ketchup, sriracha, and sugar. Use only ½ tsp of sriracha if you don’t want it spicy, use up to 1 Tbsp if you like it hot. Stir until the ketchup and sugar are dissolved. Pour the sauce into the skillet with the chicken and vegetables with the heat still on medium high. Add the noodles, stir to coat everything in the sauce, and heat through (just a few minutes).

Thursday, May 22, 2014

30 Minute Chicken Piccata

Contributed by: Meghann Pracanica

This was amazing. My husband LOVED it and said it's probably the best thing I've made. It's so flavorful and super easy to make. I did double to recipe so that there would be leftovers and I'm glad I did because this was gobbled up quickly. Definitely adding it to the rotation.

30 Minute Chicken Piccata
Serves: 4
  • ¾ pound dried spaghetti pasta
  • ¾ cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup of 2% milk
  • 4 chicken tenderloins, pounded out to thin, flat pieces
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • ¼ cup capers, rinsed
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • Salt & pepper, to taste
  1. In a large stockpot, bring water to boil and cook spaghetti according to the instructions on the box.
  2. In two separate shallow containers, add the breadcrumbs to one container and whisk the eggs and milk together in the other.
  3. Take a piece of the flattened chicken tenderloin and dip both sides in the egg/milk mixture, then cover in breadcrumbs. Shake to remove the excess. Repeat until all the chicken pieces have been covered in breadcrumbs.
  4. In a large skillet, over medium high, melt 1 tbsp. of butter then place two covered chicken pieces into the skillet. Let it get nice and brown on one side before flipping, about 2 minutes. Repeat with the other two chicken pieces and 1 tbsp. of butter. Place cooked chicken on a plate and set aside.
  5. Turn heat down to medium, melt the remaining 2 tbsp of butter and add the chicken stock and lemon juice, scraping the bottom of the skillet to get all the browned bits off. Add in the capers and let simmer for 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
  6. Your pasta should be ready and drained at this time so add the pasta to the sauce and toss to coat evenly. Place pasta on a platter and place chicken on top. With whatever sauce you may have left over, pour on top of chicken and pasta.
  7. Serve hot.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup

Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup
Contributed by: Lindsay Hughes
Makes 8 servings

2 (14 oz) cans diced petite tomatoes with juice
1 (6 oz) can of tomato paste
1 cup finely diced celery
1 cup finely diced carrots
1 cup finely diced onions
1/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbsp fresh oregano or 1 tsp dried
4 Tbsp fresh basil or 1 Tbsp dried
1/2 bay leaf
1/4 tsp black pepper
4 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup flour
1 cup Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
2 cups half and half, warmed
salt to taste

1. Heat olive oil in 4 quart soup pot. Add celery, onions and carrots. Sauté 5 minutes. Add basil, oregano, bay leaf, pepper, tomatoes, tomato paste, and chicken broth. Bring it to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until carrots are tender (15 minutes).

2. While soup simmers, prepare a roux. Melt butter over low heat, add flour and cook, stirring constantly, about 7 minutes. Slowly stir in 1 cup hot soup. Add another 3 cups and stir until smooth. Add back into soup pot.
3. For a smooth and creamy soup, use an immersion blender to blend the mixture.

4. Simmer, stirring constantly, until soup begins to thicken. Add Parmesan cheese and whisk to blend. Stir warmed half and half, salt and pepper. Simmer over low heat 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

5. Ladle into serving bowls and enjoy!
This was so delicious, and I will definitely be making it again. Everyone loved it, including the picky kiddo. It's a good way to sneak in lots of veggies. I even added a little more carrots and celery than the recipe called for. The recipe makes enough to freeze for later, and I think it will freeze really well. Very yummy with grilled cheese sandwiches or crusty bread.  

Adapted from the stovetop version here (added tomato paste and blended it):

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Snickers Chocolate Chip Cookies

Contributed by: Meghann Pracanica

So these were just okay. Not bad but not great either. I like my cookies chewy (like how it is pictured on the original site) and these came out puffy and soft. If that's how you like your cookies then this might be for you.

My only change would be that I'd add more Snickers next time because some of the cookies didn't even have any bits of Snickers in them.

Snickers Chocolate Chip Cookies
Yields about 30 cookies 

  • 2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp + 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 cup salted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups light-brown sugar
  • 1/4 granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 6 - 8 oz Snickers candy bars, chopped (about 1 1/2 - 2 cups)**
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped, unsalted or lightly salted peanuts (optional) 
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt for 30 seconds, set aside. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, whip together butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until pale and fluffy. Stir in eggs one at a time mixing until combined after each addition. Blend in vanilla. With mixer set on low speed, slowly add in dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Add in chopped Snickers, chocolate chips and peanuts and blend on low speed just until mixed in.
  • Shape dough into balls about 3 Tbsp each (45 g) and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet spacing at least 2 inches apart. Bake in preheated oven 10 - 12 minutes until edges are lightly golden. Remove from oven and allow to cool several minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool. Store in an airtight container.
  • ** I diced each of the Snickers bites into quarters. I love that I didn't have to unwrap lots of minis but if you cant find the bites the minis would work fine.

Spinach, Apple & Chicken Salad

Spinach, Apple & Chicken Salad
Contributed by: Molly Hildebrandt

Wow.  This was really good.  Cam even asked for "more leaves."  It seems like kind of an odd combination, but it's not.  It is very reminiscent of something I've had at some restaurant, but I can't pinpoint it.  It's driving me nuts.  Perfect for lunch or a light dinner.  I'm putting this in the regular rotation for sure!

Prep time: 5 mins Cook time: 10 mins Total time: 15 mins (honestly from start to finish you are probably looking at 30 minutes)

Serves: 1 to 2


3 to 4 cups cups raw spinach leaves
1 large gala apple
1 chicken breast
¼ cup sliced almonds
¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
2 tablespoons Tuscan Italian Dressing (store bought or homemade ­ I used KRAFT)

1. Heat a large skillet over medium­high heat. Cut chicken in half (like your butterflying it), so that you have two
thin breasts. Place chicken in the hot skillet, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes until browned. Turn chicken over, and
cook another 3 to 4 minutes, until cooked through. Remove to a cutting board and cool until your can easily
handle the chicken. Thinly slice the chicken breast halves.

2. Heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add almonds. Toast almonds, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned,
3 to 5 minutes. Remove to a bowl.

3. Thoroughly rinse spinach to remove any dirt. Chop spinach into bite­sized pieces. Dry spinach with a paper

4. Place spinach, chicken, almonds, and feta in a large bowl. Drizzle with salad dressing. Toss to combine. Serve
Recipe by White Lights on Wednesday at­apple­chicken­salad/

*For our chicken, I seasoned with fresh minced garlic, salt and pepper and we grilled it.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Tater Tot Casserole

Tater Tot Casserole
submitted by: Amber Loboschefski Schmid

This really was very tasty and will be a regular on menu from now on. Hopefully you enjoy it too.

Prep: 15 min  Cook: 30 min  Ingredients
  • 1 lbs of beef (a little more or less won’t hurt)
  • Tater tots (I’d say maybe ½ a regular bag, approx. 2 cups)
  • 1 can cream of ONION soup
  • ½  cup peas (I used frozen)
  • ½  cup corn (I used frozen)
  • Shredded cheddar cheese (I never measure cheese, maybe 1 cup?)
  • ¼ - ½ cup Sour cream (not pictured - optional, can just use more milk)
  • ¼ - ½ cup Milk (not pictured)
  • Salt/pepper 
  1. Lightly grease a casserole dish
  2. Spread tater tots on bottom, you don’t need to fully cover it
  3. Cook the ground beef and drain grease
  4. In the same pot, add the veggies and soup to the beef. Mix until ingredients are well incorporated. I added about ½ cup milk and ¼ cup sour cream to make the mixture a little looser and have a little more flavor.  (Note-Lots of substitutions can be made at this point as far as soup flavors or veggies.  Cream of Mushroom is one that is commonly used in this casserole)
  5. Pour mixture into casserole dish on top of the tater tots and spread out
  6. Sprinkle cheddar cheese over the top of mixture
  7. Top with remaining tater tots to completely cover and top with more cheese if desired
  8. Bake @375 for 25-35 minutes uncovered or cover and freeze until use

Baked Salmon with Honey Dijon and Garlic

Contributed by Meghann Pracanica

Normally we just add some seasoning to our salmon but I was looking for something a little different (and more flavorful) so I thought I'd give this a shot. We really liked it and the sauce can be made in minutes. I served it with rice and garlic bread but I think some green beans or a salad would be great with it too. Great dish for summer! 

Baked Salmon with Honey Dijon and Garlic
Prep time:  5 mins
Cook time:  15 mins
Total time:  20 mins
  • 2 10-12 ounce fresh salmon (cleaned, pin-bones removed)
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2-3 tbsp. parsley, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp. honey Dijon mustard 
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • A pinch of salt
  • ⅛ cup of olive oil
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees and line a large baking sheet with foil. Place salmon pieces on top of the foil and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together garlic, parsley, honey Dijon, lemon juice, salt, and olive oil. Whisk well until well-combined then using a pastry brush, brush on the sauce onto the salmon pieces.
  3. Bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes (or depending on how thick your slices of salmon are, you may need to reduce the time by 2-3 minutes or increase it by 2-3 minutes - just keep an eye on it!)
  4. Serve with your favorite sides.