Friday, December 19, 2014

Roasted Vegetable Enchiladas

mine looked kind of like this, but with corn tortillas

2-3 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced into half-inch cubes
2 zucchinis diced into half-inch cubes
1 green or red bell pepper diced into half inch pieces
2-4 cloves garlic, whole
1 onion diced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can red enchilada sauce
corn tortillas
Jack or Pepper Jack or Jack/Cheddar shredded

cilantro, avocado, and sour cream for serving

1. Preheat oven to 400*

2. Toss sweet potatoes and garlic cloves with enough olive oil to make them glisten. Sprinkle with salt. Roast for 15-20 min until soft enough to poke with a fork, but not mashable. Dice garlic finely,

3. Toss zucchini, peppers, and onions with enough olive oil to make them glisten. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 10-15 min until soft enough to poke with a fork.

4. Turn oven down to 350*

5. Mix all the vegetables, beans, 1/4-ish C of red sauce, and a couple handfuls of cheese together.

6. Fill tortillas with scant 1/4 C of mix and a sprinkle of cheese. Roll them up and lay them seam side down in a pan.

7. When your pan is full, pour some enchilada sauce over the enchilada sauce and sprinkle with more cheese. Bake for 25-35 min until everything is bubbly. Immediately top with chopped cilantro. Serve with avocados and sour cream. 

Makes about 2 9x13 in pans of enchiladas. I think total there were 26 enchiladas. My kids ate 1-2 and we ate 2-3. 

I made one pan and froze the rest of the mix and kept the second half of the enchilada sauce in my fridge. The next week I thawed the veggie mix, added some left over rice that had no other destiny than the trash can, and filled some more tortillas. I've made similar enchiladas with a cup of frozen corn I tossed on with the roasting veggies. You could also roast a jalapeno or anaheim if you want more heat. You could add some spinach.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

David's Favorite Asparagus Pie

1 stick butter
1 c. flour
1 c. chopped nuts


1 c. powdered sugar
1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese
1 c. Cool Whip
2 pkgs. instant pudding
3 c. milk

Mix butter, flour, and nuts; press into 9 x 13 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Cool. Mix powdered sugar, cream cheese, and Cool Whip; spread on cooled crust. Beat together pudding mix and milk until thickened. Spread on cream cheese layer and top with a layer of Cool Whip and chopped nuts. Refrigerate.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

spaghetti sauce

I've been making this for about 4 years, but recently had a dry spell with it while meal planning was an afterthought to a new baby. I made it again last night and was reminded how much I love it, and how worth the effort it is.

1 29oz can diced tomatoes (or whole tomatoes)
1 14.5oz can diced tomatoes or tomato sauce
1/2 an onion (or a whole small/medium one)
5 Tbs butter
a grind of black pepper

1 lb Italian sausage (we like both mild and hot)

bell peppers, carrots, garlic, herbs (oregano, basil)

  1. Put the butter, half onion, pepper, and tomatoes (and/or sauce), undrained, in a big sauce pan. Add dry herbs or garlic now. 
  2. Bring the tomatoes to a simmer on medium-high heat.
  3. Turn the heat down to medium/low and let it simmer till the butter has incorporated into the tomatoes and the whole thing is saucy, about 30 min. Smash down the tomatoes with your spoon and stir it occasionally.
  4. While the sauce is cooking, cook your sausage and crumble it (take it out of the casings if you can't find ground sausage). Chop your bell peppers or grate a carrot if you're using it.
  5. Dump the cooked sausage into the completed sauce.
  6. Take the onion out of the sauce and chop it up. Add it and your chopped veggies to the pan you cooked the sausage in and fry them for a minute or two. Dump it in the sauce.
  7. Add some pasta water to the spaghetti sauce to make it smoother and stick to your pasta better.
  8. Add any fresh herbs and stir them in.
We like to eat this on thick pasta like cellentani or linguini or fusilli that's had plenty of salt in the water. And freshly grated parmesan is delicious, too.

Adapted from

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Berry Smoothie

Fill the blender 3/4 full of frozen strawberries, slightly thawed. Fill the rest up with fresh raspberries. On the last day of June, there will be so many raspberries that even though you've been picking them every day and having a bowlful with cream, and so has your wife, there will still be two bowls leftover that you need to make into smoothies. There might be a Japanese beetle in there, or a really tiny caterpillar, or a harmless sort of green spider. Bending over to pick that many raspberries can get tiring, so you get someone to bring you a chair. And another bowl, because this one is full. If you work quickly, most of the mosquitos won't have time to find you. Add in a half cup of white sugar, and a tablespoon of vanilla extract. Then blend it up. It's summer, this is summer food.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Orange Chicken Soup

Mike and Miriam made Orange Chicken soup with cranberries and almonds for us years ago.  I love it and make it a couple of times a year.
This week I made it - well, with alterations using leftovers from Sunday dinner since we are leaving for Macedonia this week and don't want leftovers in the refrigerator - for a Frankfurt Senior Missionary FHE.
Everyone wanted the recipe, so I typed it up and decided to post it here.

Orange Chicken soup
Put a chicken in a pot, covered with water.  Add some chopped up celery and onions.
Cook until the chicken falls off the bones.  Strain off and keep the liquid. Debone the chicken and cut the chicken pieces up into bitesized pieces.  Toss out the celery and onions and all the chicken bones, gristle and skin.
Meanwhile, boil some chunky pieces of potatoes and carrots in chicken broth until tender (or use leftover potatoes and carrots from dinner on Sunday like I did).
Next, coarsely grate 4 peeled carrots. Add to the broth.  Chop up an onion.  Add to the broth.  Chop up 6 stalks of celery.  Add to the broth.  Add one package of dry chicken noodle soup with tiny noodles.  Add 2 tablespoons of chicken soup base.  Add one half of a package of spaetzle  or kluski (polish) noodles: cook only until tender. DO NOT OVERCOOK THE NOODLES or they will turn to mush. 
Next add 3-4 Tablespoons of Stephens’ Orange cider mix (or more to taste). Add some pepper.  Add the cut up chicken and heat it all through.
If you cook the noodles separately in water, then you can add them just before you are ready to eat the soup.

An alternative version of this leaves out the carrots and potatoes.  You add sliced almonds and dried cranberries instead for a really great unusual soup.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

rice omelet

1 bowl microwave rice
1 can corn (or fresh asparagus or mushrooms would be nice)
2 tbsp butter
5 eggs
sliced cheddar cheese

Heat up the veggies and butter in the pan. Add the hot microwaved rice bowl. Stir. Add five eggs. stir. Add salt. Cover with cheese slices. Add parsley. Wait for the cheese to melt.
Total preparation time: 5 minutes. Serves two or three people.
Growing up I would have called this quiche, but it's not reaaly much like quiche. It's just an omelet with rice in it. 

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Donut Bread Pudding

Makes 6 really big servings or 12 reasonable sized servings. This is a very sweet and tasty dessert. It's basically like you mixed vanilla ice cream up with donuts and cooked apples.
One dozen glazed donuts (they don't have to be particularly good donuts. They can even be stale.)
3 cups heavy whipping cream (or you could use condensed milk from a couple of cans.)
5 eggs (you could get away with fewer)
3 tsp cinnamon (maybe other sweet spices as well?)
3 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
2 or 3 diced, skinned granny smith apples (or a few cups of raisins or blueberries, if you prefer.)
maybe some grated orange peel

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a greased 9 x 13inch pan, tear up the donuts into bite size pieces. You will have to wash your hands again at this point because they will have icing all over them.
In a large bowl, mix up all the rest of the ingredients. Pour the mixture over the top of the donuts. Maybe squash them down a bit so they sponge up some of the liquid. This isn't the prettiest dish. But it does make your house smell nice.
Cook uncovered for 40 minutes. It should still be kind of soft on top when you are done, not crisp. If it is black you have left it in for too long.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

anytime American curry

This recipe takes ten minutes to prepare, and you don't have to have gone to the store any time recently.

2 microwave rice bowls (microwave 90 seconds each)
3 blocks of Japanese curry base (about 36 cubic centimeters total)
Here is a picture of what I mean by blocks:

2 cups water or milk
1 apple (or can of pineapple chunks)
1 stick celery (or can of corn)
1 can of chunk chicken breast
it looks like this:

spices (curry powder, coriander, cinnmon, marjoram)

Boil the water. Break up the curry block and drop it in the water. Cut the apple and celery into little chunks. Add the fruit, vegetables and meat to the boiling curry and stir. Let it sit long enough to get warm, but not long enough for the apples to break down. The curry should come out thick, not runny. Spice to taste.

You can add other things like potatoes or carrots but you would have to boil them for a few minutes before you added the curry or they would be too hard. Of course you can make rice in a pot or a rice cooker, but that would take a lot longer.
It will end up looking something like this:

serves 2 or 3 people