Posts Tagged ‘recipes’

slow cooked chicken

i found this recipe on Real Simple‘s site last week with intentions of making it this past weekend – there’s nothing simpler than setting up the slow cooker on a Sunday morning, having a delicious meal ready by dinner time AND plenty of leftovers to use through the week… my kinda meal!

it was REALLY tasty, kinda reminded me of some good ol’ comfort food. i’m putting mashed potatoes over the leftovers tonight and baking it like a casserole – can’t wait to try that out


1/2 pound sliced bacon, diced (turkey bacon can be subbed)
1 4- to 6-pound chicken, cut up (I used boneless skinless chicken thighs)
1/2 cup dry white wine (or 1/4 cup dry vermouth plus 1/4 cup water)
1/2 pound small white mushrooms
1 cup frozen small white onions, thawed
6 garlic cloves, chopped (I used shallots)
3 sprigs fresh rosemary (or 1 tablespoon dried rosemary leaves)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons cornstarch

1) Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium-low heat until crisp. With a slotted spoon, transfer it to a 4- to 6-quart slow cooker. Pour off all but a light coating of fat from the skillet. Add the chicken and brown over medium-high heat; transfer to the cooker.
2) Pour the wine into the skillet and scrape up any browned bits; add the skillet contents to the cooker, along with the mushrooms, onions, garlic, rosemary, and salt. Cover and cook on low heat for 6 hours, or
on high for 3 hours.
3)  Transfer the chicken, bacon, and vegetables to a platter; keep warm. Pour the sauce into a small saucepan. Combine the water and cornstarch; stir it into the sauce. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes. Pour over the chicken.


naturally relieved – part two

do you believe this picture is from the first week of march – LAST YEAR?!

and here i was thinking the beginning of march this year was unseasonably warm… i guess i thought wrong!

anyways – spring has a sprung up all around us, from the bulbs to the trees to the bees starting to work their pollen-ey magic all over the place

are you finding yourself caught up with the usual symptoms of spring allergies?

check out THIS POST from last year on natural ways to relieve spring allergies


THIS POST from the fall on foods to fight allergies


to add to the goodness going on in the posts mentioned above, here’s some more foods that fight allergies:

Citrus Fruits
500 mg a day of vitamin C is the magic number to hit a day – incorporate oranges, grapefruit, lemons, and limes into your diet, a large orange contains nearly 100 mg of C, half of a large grapefruit contains about 60 mg

Stinging Nettle
it helps stifle inflammation with the histamine that it contains. keep it easy to obtain by taking the 500-mg freeze-dried nettle capsules, three times a day, found in your natural health store, and take three times a day. heed the warning labels though, long-term use of this herb is not recommended, it can deplete your potassium stores

leaves and roots of the butterbur shrub contain petasines, which can block some reactions that spark allergies. its use is not generally recommended for young children, people older than 65, or those with ragweed allergies. since the roots of the perennial shrub generally contain high levels of pyrrolizidine alkaloids (which are damaging to the liver) herbalists recommend looking for butterbur products that specify “no pyrrolizidines”, or ones that use a CO2 extracting process. researchers have found that butterbur was just as effective as “Zyrtec” after two weeks of treatment and has been shown to relieve sneezing, itching, runny nose, stuffiness, and watery eyes in just five days

immune-strengthening, often hailed as a natural flu treatment, but also aid in natural allergy relief. try the wine, juice, or jam to tap the fruit’s beneficial flavonoids that reduce inflammation

inhibits the secretion of allergy-inducing histamine

Anti-Allery Soup Recipe
Boil an onion (with skin) and a clove of garlic. Add ½ cup chopped leaves and diced taproots of evening primrose. After boiling for about 5 minutes, add a cup of nettle leaves and a cup of diced celery stalks, and boil gently for another 3 to 10 minutes. Before eating, remove the onion skins and eat the soup it’s while still warm. Season with wine vinegar, black pepper, hot pepper, turmeric, curry powder, or celery seed.

soda bread with a twist

an orangey twist that is!

we had quite the Irish feast this weekend in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day
lamb stew, Dublin coddle, corned beef and veggies, traditional Irish soda bread AND an experiment i wanted to try out

Orange Scented Soda Bread

i found the recipe HERE and pretty much followed it. i used craisins instead of dried currants and couldn’t find millet flour so i just subbed in some potato flour… it turned out a little more dense than i was shooting for, but still tasted incredibly yummy and the leftovers toasted with a little bit of butter on top = delicioso!


Ingredients: (my choices in italics)
1 cup sorghum flour or brown rice flour (brown rice flour)
1 cup tapioca starch or potato starch (potato starch)
1/2 cup almond meal flour or GF millet flour (potato flour because millet flour wasn’t avail and to keep it nut free)
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 teaspoons xanthan gum
1/3 cup coconut oil or organic vegan shortening (coconut oil)
3/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
2 free-range organic eggs or Ener-G egg replacer (egg replacer)
1 tablespoon grated orange peel
1/2 cup dried currants (craisins)

Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line the bottom of an 8-inch cake pan with a circle of parchment paper.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, starches and dry ingredients.
Add in the coconut oil by pieces, and mix until it is sandy.
Add in the orange juice, eggs and orange peel. Mix the ingredients with a beater or a wooden spoon until a smooth and sticky dough forms.
Stir in the craisins.
Scape the dough into the prepared cake pan and using wet hands flatten and smooth the dough into a round loaf. Using a knife, make a criss-cross dent in the center of the loaf, as best you can.
Bake the loaf in the center of the oven for 30 to 35 minutes (mine took almost 50 minutes), till firm and slightly golden. Cool on a wire rack for five minutes or so until it is cool enough to handle. Remove from the pan and peel off the parchment. Continue to cool on the rack or serve it warm.


check out my recipes page for more tasty ideas

crispy taco shells

the other day at the food store i picked up a package of 80 soft corn tortillas for $2.00 – what a DEAL right?! i even asked the guy stocking the shelves if it was a mistake. why are they so inexpensive compared to flour tortillas?!

thankfully they have quite a long shelf life when they’re kept in the fridge, but i knew i needed to get a little bit more crafty than using them solely for fajita night…

the lightbulb went off when i saw this recipe online – why had i never thought to make my OWN hard taco shells? i’d always been buying them at the store, then disappointed when they break in half after the first bite is taken

these ones on the other hand are hard but do have some give when you bite into them, so they don’t crumble in your hands, and totally customizable, flavor-wise!


soft corn tortillas
cooking spray (olive oil, canola, PAM, etc)

Preheat oven to 375*.
Wrap (4-6 at a time) tortillas in a damp paper towel and microwave for 30 seconds.
Spray both sides of tortilla with cooking spray and sprinkle with your choices of salt, chili pepper, herbs, etc.
Carefully drape tortillas over one or two (for wider shells) rungs on your oven rack, make sure to place a cookie sheet on the next rack down in case anything drips off.
Cook for 7-10 minutes (check often for done-ness).
Remove from rack and fill with your taco fixins!


veggie chips

looking to satisfy a snack craving, but trying to keep things on the ‘healthier side’?

try out this easy recipe for homemade veggie chips – the trans fat is slashed, there is much less sodium than the ones you would find in the store, plus – it’s kinda fun to eat something you made ALLlll by yo’self!


Thinly slice with a sharp knife or mandolin slicer.
Toss in olive or coconut oil and evenly space them on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.
Scatter with salt, dried thyme, and oregano.
Bake for 20-30 minutes at 325*, checking often.

For KALE–>
Cut 1 bunch of kale into bite-sized strips.
Toss in olive or coconut oil and evenly space them on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.
Sprinkle with sea salt, freshly cracked pepper, and a dash of apple cider vinegar.
Bake for 18-20 minutes at 350*, toss after 10 minutes.

Thinly slice with a sharp knife or mandolin slicer.
Toss in olive or coconut oil and evenly space them on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.
Scatter with salt – or for a spicy twist try cayenne pepper, cumin and coriander.
Bake for 10 minutes per side at 350*.


…nutritional PLUSES…
the BEETS are filled with folate, manganese, and potassium
the KALE is packed with vitamin-C
the SWEET POTATOES offer a super high dose of vitamin-A

*check out my RECIPE page for more tasty creations*

fresh pasta’licious

i’ve been on this one for a while now to wow me and my readers with one of her tasty recipes – always concocting something new, interesting and delicious in the kitchen i grew up in… and i wonder where i get it from

with no further adieu – another lil’ som’somn from my mama dukes – take it away Susie!


I have family and friends who have allergies to the common ingredients found in semolina flour-based pasta (wheat, gluten and eggs). There are rice pastas available in local foodstores, however, their sentiments for fresh-made pasta inspired this cook and her KitchenAid to develop our own Allergy-Free Fresh Pasta. After some experimenting with different combinations of ingredients, this recipe comes very close to true semolina pasta, holds up well while cooking, has a nice, silky texture and is delicious.

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4 T. EggReplacer in 12 T. water, (let stand until thickens)
4 T. Ground Flaxseed in  12 T. hot water (let stand until thickens)
4 tsp. Xanthan Gum (this recreates the “gluten” necessary to make your pasta dough elastic)
2 c. Stone Ground White Rice Flour
1 c. Potato Starch
1 c. Tapioca Flour
1/2 c. Water
4 tsp. EVOO
1 tsp. Salt

1) Attach your flat blade to your KitchenAid. Add the Rice Flour, Potato Starch and Tapioca Flour into the mixer bowl. Place your pouring shield on top of the bowl. Mix at power #2 for 1 minute. With the pouring shield still in place on the mixing bowl, turn on to power #2, add in the EggReplacer and Ground Flaxseed mixtures, Xanthan Gum, water, EVOO and salt.
2) Mix for 2-4 minutes until all the ingredients are coming together and starting to form small groups of dough balls. Add small amounts of water in increments if the dough is still in many small, dry particles vs. more moist, starting to form into dough balls.
3) Turn off machine, and switch to the kneading hook. Knead for another 2-4 minutes. At the end of this cycle, the dough should be formed in almost a composite dough ball. Take the dough out of the bowl, place on a pastry or bread cutting board, and knead the dough ball by hand for 2 minutes. It should be a nicely formed, pliable, smooth dough ball.
4) Cut into 8 pieces. One at a time, take a piece, and roll out the ball out with a rolling pin until it’s about 1/4″ thick. When done rolling each piece, remove the kneading blade, and insert the the pasta roller attachment. Turn the pasta roller dial setting to 1, the power setting to #2, and proceed to place the dough through the kneader. Repeat this cycle with each piece another 2 times. The pieces will get longer and longer with each pass. You can cut in half to be able to handle easier. Lay each piece flat on a waxpaper-covered cookie sheet until ready for the next cycle.
5) Turn the pasta roller dial setting to 4, the power setting still at #2. Run each strip through this cycle 2 times each to reduce the width of the pasta to be ready to run through the fettuccine attachment.
6) Cover a another cookie sheet with waxpaper. Attach the fettuccine cutter.
7) With the power setting still at #2, run each piece through the fettuccine cutter. Catch each pasta “nest” on the cookie sheet as it comes through the cutter. Cover each nest over with paper towels and let all dry until stiff enough to handle without breaking. Place portion sizes that work well for your serving needs in ziplock bags to freeze until ready to cook.

Cooking the already made pasta:
As this pasta is not as dense as semolina flour pasta, it cooks very fast. After your water comes to a hard, rolling boil, add 1 T. EVOO and the pasta. Cook 2 minutes, or even less. Drain into a colander. No rinsing needed. Season as your prefer and serve immediately.

~*Bon Appetit!*~

i can attest to the tastiness of this recipe – i QC’d some on sunday afternoon :0)
and plan on having one of my frozen baggies of pasta accompanying some homemade sauce for dinner tonight!

sweet n’ spicy chicken

i took a whole chicken out of the freezer monday morning to defrost – i guess the extra coldness in the house these days wasn’t quite cooperating with the thawing factor… it was still a little too frozen to roast when i got in from work that night

so, yesterday i was in search of an extra bit of scrumptiousness to add to this guy hanging out in my fridge for the day… he’d meet his fiery demise later for dinner – MWAH-HAHA!

thankfully RealSimple came to the rescue again as this recipe launched into my inbox at the exact moment i was about to start perusing the net.

simple = check.
all of the ingredients on hand = check.
less than 5 minutes to throw together = check.

and so it deliciously went –>


1 3.5-4 pound chicken (whole or cut into parts)
1 T. olive oil
1 T. chili powder
1 T. brown sugar
1 t. oregano
3/4 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper

Combine the oil, chili powder, brown sugar, oregano, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
Pat the chicken dry and rub the mixture onto it.
Pop it in the oven, cook until done.
Serve hot, at room temperature, or chilled


YES – it is that easy

something like mac n’ cheese with veggies would probably be a tasty accompaniment to this. we used what i had in the house, some rice and veggies – have a bunch of leftovers to use through the week too = double SCORE!