Thursday, July 19, 2012

Cheesy Pepperoni Bread

Cheesy Pepperoni Bread
from my mom's kitchen
makes about 8 slices

1 Cup Mayonnaise
1 Cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
1/3 Cup Pepperoni, Slices Cut into Quarters or Eights
1 Teaspoon Chili Powder
Sliced Green Olives (Optional)
Rustic Italian Bread, Sliced (Can Pre-Toast for Extra Crunchy Bites)

Preheat oven on broil.  Mix all ingredients together (except bread), making sure the mixture is very chunky.  Spread the mixture thinly on the bread slices and stick under the broiler for 3-4 minutes or until cheese is melted and the mixture is hot and bubbly.  Serve immediately.

This is my mom's new go-to recipe.  She makes it all the time.  It's perfect with a light main course, like a salad or a piece of fish.  Also perfect for a snack!  She says there is no need to measure the ingredients, it should be very casually thrown together.  Eye-ballin'.  

Chunky mixture

Ready to go in the oven

Broiled and ready to eat!  Well-done in a few spots.  

Monday, July 16, 2012


from my madre
serves 8-10

10 Lasagna Noodles, Give or Take, Raw
1 to 1 1/2 Pound Ground Hamburger and/or Sausage
1 Jar Pasta Sauce
12 Oz. Ricotta Cheese
2 Cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
2 Eggs
Italian Seasoning, To Taste, Optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Brown meat in a large skillet.  Add the pasta sauce to the meat, rinsing the jar out with a few tablespoons of water and add the water to the meat.  Set aside.  In a small or medium bowl, mix together the eggs, ricotta cheese, and the Italian seasoning, if using.  Lay half of the raw noodles on the bottom of a sprayed 9 x 13 glass or metal baking pan.  Spread half of the Ricotta mixture over the noodles, then sprinkle half of the cheese on the Ricotta.  Then spread the meat mixture on the cheese, making sure the noodles are all covered. Repeat with the rest of the ingredients, noodles, Ricotta, mozzarella, and meat, making sure the noodles are completely covered.  Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until hot and bubbly throughout.  Can top with additional mozzarella cheese for the last 5 - 10 minutes and finish uncovered.

Lasagna is one of those things that everyone knows how to make (or should know how to make).  I think, with lasagna, less is more.  Perfect for a weeknight meal.  

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Pesto Chicken Burgers

Pesto Chicken Burgers
from Every Day Food Magazine Jul/Aug 2012
serves 4

1 Pound Ground Chicken
1/4 Cup Pesto, Divided
Salt and Pepper
4 Slices Tomato
3 Oz. Mozzarella, Sliced
4 Pieces Focaccia, Halved Or Buns

Heat grill or grill pan to medium-high heat.  Combine 1 tablespoon pesto, 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper and chicken and form into 4 patties.  Lightly oil the hot grill.  Brush tomatoes with oil and season with salt and pepper.  Grill patties, covered, 4 minutes.  Flip patties and top with cheese.  Add tomatoes to grill and cook, flipping once, until tomatoes are lightly charred and burgers are opaque throughout.  Assemble sandwiches in focaccia with a spread of pesto, burgers, and tomatoes.

These burgers were super flavorful and moist.  And I don't even like tomatoes that much!  I was concerned that the patties would fall apart while cooking but they held together beautifully.  This whole meal took about 10 minutes start to finish.  Perfect for a summer evening!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

DIY Chili Cheeseburger Hamburger Helper

DIY Chili Cheeseburger Hamburger Helper

1 Tablespoon Corn Starch
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder
1 Teaspoon Onion Powder
1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 Teaspoon Salt
1 Teaspoon Sugar
1 1/2 Cups Small Pasta, Such as Shells
1 Pound Ground Beef
2 1/4 Cups Water
1/2 Cup Milk
1/2 Cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
1 Cup of Veggies, Such as Canned Tomatoes or Green Peppers (Optional)

Mix together corn starch, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and sugar.  Can premix spices and store with pasta to use for a later time.  In a skillet, brown ground beef.  Add water and milk to beef and bring to a boil.  Add pasta, spices, and veggies, if desired.  Cover and simmer for about 12 minutes until pasta is tender.  In the last few minutes of cooking, add cheese and cover the pot again.  When the pasta is tender and the cheese is melted, uncover and take off the heat and let stand for a few minutes so the sauce will continue to thicken.

When M and I were still in school and newly married we ate a lot of hamburger helper.  It was simple and convenient after a long day of school and work.  However, I wasn't a big fan of all the preservatives that go in there.  Now, I know that this isn't super healthy either, but it is good comfort food and very convenient on those busy days.  If you would like to check out other varieties, go to the link above, she's got every kind of DIY HH imaginable!