Everyday Mom's Meals

Friday, November 21, 2014

Day After Bite {A Post For Earth Fare}

 Less than a week people. That's right, by this time next week all the menu planning, eating and football watching will be over. And we will have moved onto all those leftovers and tree trimming! 

Today I've got a great idea you can either serve before the big Thanksgiving meal, or wait and put some of those leftovers to good use with. 

Let's face it, while we all look forward to the huge Turkey Day meal, the entire day is really about eating, and even when dinner isn't served until 3 pm, you find yourself looking for things to snack on all day long. You're sitting on the couch, watching football, or the Macy's Parade, and you just have to have something to munch on. It's just part of the Thanksgiving aura. 

The first time I made these years ago, I wasn't sure about the flavor combo because of the addition of the cheese (after all, turkey and cranberry are a no brainer together) but they are like the perfect bite every time you put one in your mouth. 

If you need some ideas for the pre-feast snacks, let this be the first on the list. Or you know you will be in desperate need of ways to use the pounds of turkey you have left come Black Friday, this is the answer to either!

Cranberry Turkey Bites
Snack Crackers
Deli Turkey or Leftover Roast Turkey, sliced thin
Whole Cranberry Sauce
Sharp Cheddar Cheese, sliced tin to fit crackers

Lay cheese on crackers. Top with turkey and cranberry sauce. Serve immediately. 

Shared on The Country Cook Nov. 21, 2014

Cranberry at Very Good Recipes

Disclaimer: I received a gift card in exchange for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Foodie Gift Ideas

Have you started your holiday shopping yet? Do you have foodies on your shopping list? Folks in your life that enjoy fun gifts that speak to their culinary side? If you answered yes, you've come to the right place. Today I've got a great round-up of fun gift ideas for all the foodies in your life! 

Cooking Up Memories Culinary Journal 

Cooking up Memories provides a keepsake to remember all your favorite recipes. Capture and share favorite recipes, great cooking tips, and fond food memories. The journal prompts the writer in ways that allows you to share so many things with the reader. Pass down all of this to the next generation! You can find more online here.

Drawer Decor System

Organize any kitchen drawer and add a splash of color with the Drawer Decor System from KMH home designs. The drawer mat is made from non-slip silicone to prevent sliding and features repositionable dividers to secure contents in place. Available in a variety of colors, and a deluxe or standard version, any  home cook would love to have this.

Smart Sizzors

What if I told you there is one tool you can keep in your kitchen drawer that does the work of multiple ones? Sounds like a pretty good idea, right? Well, that's exactly what you get with the Smart Sizzors from Any Sharp. Not only can they cut up chicken, snip herbs and trim meat, these multi-functional scissors have a bottle opener, nut cracker and garlic crusher. Plus, they can strip wire and cut through tough material, so they can be used outside the kitchen too! For more info, visit them at anysharp.com 

Disclaimer: I received products in exchange for this feature. All thoughts and opinions are my own

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Breakfast For Dinner

By now, most of you know if I share a breakfast recipe with you, I didn't make it for breakfast at all. We are big fans of breakfast dishes, but we enjoy them for dinner more. So when I test out new morning time recipes, it's at the end of my day. But that's okay. One way I know a recipe will be a success is when I can tell it's something that could be enjoyed any time of day, making it even more versatile.

I really wanted to make sure I got this one posted soon because I realize so many of you are preparing for the house guests that are about to descend upon your home. Let's face it, some of them will come for turkey and stay on through until you ring in the New Year. Okay, not really, but it might seem like that. You know, like Cousin Eddie in Christmas Vacation.

If that sounds familiar to you, you're going to love this recipe. It's easy, and can feed a crowd on a budget! Plus, they are perfect for when the household is all getting up at different times. Make them first thing in the morning for the early birds, and the teenagers can reheat them for brunch when they finally roll out of bed at 11.

So many of us concentrate on what we are going to serve for family dinners or entertaining during the evening meal, sometimes remembering you actually have to feed those squatters, err, lovely family members, three meals a day can seem over whelming. Don't fret. I'm here to help, and I've brought along some yummy...and easy... breakfast burritos to help!

Baked Breakfast Burritos
8 eggs
1 package pre-cooked bacon, fried crisp and chopped
1 c. shredded taco cheese
8 oz. button mushrooms, sliced
1/4 c. sour cream
2 TBS butter
6 green onions, chopped, a few reserved for garnish
Salt and Pepper to taste
6 flour tortillas

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 11 x 7 baking dish. In a large skillet saute mushrooms and green onions until soft. Remove from skillet. In a large bowl whisk together eggs and sour cream. Cook in skillet until set to desired consistency. I kept mine just a little soft to allow for extra cooking in the oven. Combine mushrooms and bacon with egg mixture. Stir and cook until heated through. Fill the center of each tortilla with egg mixture. Sprinkle with cheese. Roll tightly. Place seam side down in baking dish. Spray with nonstick spray. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake for 5-10 minutes until browned and cheese melted. Top with salsa and extra green onions.

Shared on The Country Cook Nov. 21, 2014

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Around The Table { A Review}

I love cook books. We know this about me. And we also know that many of you out there share in my passion for the. Like me, you collect them. Read them like novels. Get lost in them. Well, today I'm going to introduce you to the latest one that's been added to my collection:

Around The Table 
Recipes and Inspiration for Gatherings Throughout the Year
by Martina McBride

Yep, you read that correctly. One of country music's most beloved artists has just published her first book filled with her personal tips for entertaining and inventive party ideas. We are talking simplicity for parties in your home. From recipes to even music play lists, Martina gives you all the tools you need to throw an amazing, but still budget friendly, gathering your guests will love. 

It was so hard to decide on a few recipes I wanted to share with all of you, but finally I narrowed it down to these three, because I think they are perfect for the upcoming holiday season.

Autumn chopped salad 
Serves 6 
The Balsamic–Poppy Seed Dressing (recipe follows) has a pleasant tanginess that is a 
nice change of pace from the usual super sweet poppy seed dressings, plus it balances 
the sweetness of the dried cherries and pears. I dress the salad very lightly and offer 
more of the dressing for guests to add at the table if they wish. 

 3 romaine hearts, chopped (about 8 cups) 
 2 small Red Bartlett pears, chopped 3⁄4 cup dried cherries, roughly chopped 
 3⁄4 cup pecans, chopped and toasted 
 6 slices thick-cut bacon, cooked and crumbled 
 1⁄2 cup crumbled feta cheese 
 1⁄2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves 
 Balsamic–Poppy Seed Dressing 

1. Combine the lettuce, pears, cherries, pecans, bacon, feta, and parsley on a large 
platter or in a large bowl. Serve with the Balsamic–Poppy Seed Dressing. 

Tip: Have you ever noticed that when you toss a salad all the good stuff (in this case the 
fruit, nuts, cheese, and bacon) goes to the bottom of the bowl? I like to toss the 
chopped lettuce with the dressing and then add the rest of the ingredients on top. It’ s 
really pretty that way and it ensures that everyone gets a little of everything on their 
salad plate. This salad is pretty enough to bring to the table to serve. 

Balsamic–Poppy Seed Dressing 
Makes 1 cup 
 2 tablespoons poppy seeds 
 1⁄3 cup sugar 
 6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 
 1 tablespoon grated yellow onion 
 2 tablespoons chopped garlic 
 2 teaspoons dry mustard powder 
 1 teaspoon kosher salt 
 1⁄2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
2⁄3 cup extra-virgin olive oil 

1. Combine the poppy seeds, sugar, balsamic vinegar, onion, garlic, mustard powder, 
salt, and pepper in a food processor, pulsing 3 times. With the food processor running, 
gradually add the olive oil through the feed tube, blending until incorporated. 

2. Pour the dressing into a screw-top jar and store in the refrigerator. When ready to use, shake to combine.  

Garlic Roasted Shrimp Cocktail
 3 pounds jumbo tail on shrimp (16 to 20 or 21 to 25 count), peeled and deveined 
 8 garlic cloves, finely chopped 
 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
1 1⁄2 teaspoons kosher salt 
 3⁄4 teaspoon cracked black pepper 
 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 

1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. 

2. In a large bowl, combine the shrimp, garlic, olive oil, salt, and the pepper. Spread the 
shrimp in a single layer on a 17 × 13-inch rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment 

3. Roast the shrimp for 6 to 8 minutes, turning once, or until they are opaque and firm. 
Transfer the shrimp to a shallow dish and refrigerate, partially covered, for at least 3 

Serve with Spicy Cocktail Sauce with Red Onion (recipe follows). 

Spicy Cocktail Sauce
 1 cup ketchup 
 3⁄4 cup chili sauce 
 1⁄4 cup grated red onion 
 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh jalapeno 
 1⁄3 cup prepared horseradish 
 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 
 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 
 1⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt 
Dash of Tabasco hot sauce 

Combine the ketchup, chili sauce, onion, jalapeno, horseradish, lemon juice, 
Worcestershire sauce, salt, and Tabasco in a medium bowl.
Chill, covered, until ready to use. 

Hunter’s Chicken 
Serves 8 to 10 
This is a savory, rustic, satisfying main course dish. Feel free to use all breast pieces if 
that’s what your family prefers. Just make sure they are skin-on, bone-in breasts. If you 
have a Dutch oven or roasting pan, you can prep this from start to finish all in the same 
pan. Just place the roasting pan over two burners. 

2 whole (4- to 5-pound) farm-raised chickens, cut into serving pieces 
Kosher salt 
Freshly ground black pepper 
3 garlic cloves 
7 to 8 fresh sage leaves 
1⁄2 bottle dry white wine, plus 3⁄4 cup flour for dusting 
1⁄2 cup extra virgin olive oil 
1⁄4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 
2 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes (preferably San Marzano), drained 
1 cup whole pitted Kalamata or Taggiasca olives 
2 cups fresh sliced baby Portobello mushrooms 
2 cups chicken stock 

1. Rinse the chicken and pat it dry, then season liberally with salt and pepper. Place the 
pieces in a large bowl. Smash and peel the garlic and add it to the bowl with the sage 
leaves and the half bottle of wine, turning the pieces to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator, 
turning the pieces occasionally, at least 4 hours but preferably overnight. 

2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Drain the chicken, discarding the marinade. Dust the chicken pieces lightly with the flour. Heat a Dutch oven or 16 x 13-inch roasting pan over 
medium-high heat for 1 minute, then add the oil. When the oil shimmers, add the red 
pepper flakes and stir about 1 minute. 

3. Working in batches, brown 3 to 4 pieces of chicken at a time, skin side down, 5 minutes per side until the skin is golden brown, and set aside. 

4. Add the remaining ¾ cup wine to the pan, stirring to loosen any browned bits, and boil 
for 5 minutes, or until reduced by half. Stir in the tomatoes, olives, mushrooms, and 
chicken stock to blend. Return the chicken to the pan and spoon the tomato mixture over 
the chicken. Cover the roasting pan tightly with aluminum foil, or if using a Dutch oven, 
cover with the lid. 

5. Bake for 45 minutes, then uncover and cook for an additional 20 minutes, or until the 
juices run clear when the chicken is pierced between the leg and the thigh with the tip of a knife. 

I told you every dish was more mouth watering than the last. If you love to entertain at home, this cookbook is going to be your new best friend. Or, maybe you have a foodie on your gift list this year! They would love this too. Either way, you can find Around The Family Table on Amazon. Happy entertaining! 

Disclaimer: I was provided with a free copy of the cookbook in exchange for this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Take A Gander Into The Pantry

Have you ever wandered into the kitchen, taken a gander into your pantry and found something that made you say to yourself "Um, how long as that been there?" If not, then my hats off to you, because it's been happening to me more and more lately. I'm assuming I've bought or been given items for recipes, and for whatever reason they weren't used. Either I changed my mind about the recipe I was creating, or a company was very generous and I was given extra. Then I put them in the pantry and move on. Well, recently it was time for me to go back, see what I have and create something to use it up.

This recipe was inspired by one simple can. A can of diced tomatoes with olive oil and basil. Well, okay, there were two cans, but of the same thing, so for story telling purposes, they count as one. Think diced tomatoes with an Italian twist. I've had them forever, and it was time for them to be put to good use. But how? I mean, you can do almost anything with diced tomatoes. They are great in the cold months when fresh ones just aren't an option. So, the brainstorming began. To be honest, the first thing that came to mind was a great bruschetta recipe. However, I was more in need of a hearty dinner, so my brain moved on.

Then I got to thinking about something else I knew I had sitting in the pantry. Egg noodles. I always have them on hand because they make a quick side dish in a pinch. And to be honest, I will find any reason to eat some warm buttered egg noodles. That's when the plan really started to come together.

I wish I could tell you this is a fantastic one pot meal, but it actually takes two. But the main part does come together in one skillet, so it's almost just as good. This meal is rustic, delicious and perfect after a long day.

I'm so glad I finally found a use for those two cans of tomatoes. Just in time too. Why? Because I bought two more so I could try out that bruschetta recipe I thought of. Time to get to cooking again!

Italian Skillet Chicken
Buttered Egg Noodles
3 large boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
2 can diced tomatoes, with garlic and olive oil, ONE can drained
1/4 c. chicken broth
8 oz. button mushrooms, thick sliced
1 small onion, diced
1 lg. extra wide egg noodles, cooked to package directions
5 TBS butter
3 TBS olive oil
1 TBS corn starch
1 1/2 TBS Italian seasoning
1 TBS dried parsley
Garlic powder, to taste
Salt and Pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese

Season chicken with salt, pepper and garlic powder, Allow to sit at room temperature about 15 minutes. In a large skillet melt 2 TBS butter. Add onions. Saute until almost tender. Add mushrooms and saute both until mushrooms are browned. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from skillet. Add olive oil. Add chicken. Do not move for 1-2 minutes to brown on first side. Continue cooking until chicken is almost cooked through. Add chicken broth and scrape bottom of pan to deglaze. Add mushrooms mixture and both cans tomatoes (1 with juice) to chicken. Mix well. Cook for 3-5 minutes. Carefully ladle out about 1/4 c. liquid. Add cornstarch to liquid and whisk well. Return to pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 15 minutes until thickened. When pasta is cooked, drain well and return to hot pot. Add 3 TBS butter and parsley. Stir well. Serve chicken over egg noodles. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese if desired.

Shared on The Country Cook Nov. 21, 2014