Friday, November 18, 2005

Cheesy Broccoli Potatoes

It's been awhile, and anything I cook these days is in the easy-to-fix-in-a-few-minutes-with-the-assistance-of-a-toddler line. But this got such rave reviews I thought it was worth posting.

Scrub and bake 4-8 potatoes, depending on how big they are. (This is the toddler part. Dirt and water!)

When they're almost done, make a white sauce with:
2 T. butter
2 t. chopped garlic (Saute for a few minutes, then add):
2 T flour
2 c. of milk

Rinse the ice off a 1-lb package of frozen broccoli, and chop it a little smaller if needed. Toss into the skillet with the white sauce and 2-3 cups grated cheddar cheese. Cook just until the cheese melts. (The broccoli should still be bright green and crunchy.)

Serve sauce over the potatoes. Serves 4-6 or thereabouts.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Tuscan Chicken and Beans

This is a great fast, simple recipe. I found it in a cookbook and it is a favorite of Ben's.

1 lb chicken, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 t dried rosemary or 2 t fresh, chopped rosemary
1/4 t salt
1/4 t pepper
1 C chicken broth
1 16-oz white beans (cannellini or other), rinsed
2 T sun-dried tomatoes (optional but they add a lot of flavor)

Coat non-stick skillet; place over medium heat until hot. Add chicken, sprinkle with rosemary, salt and pepper. Stir fry for 2 minutes. Add broth, beans, and tomato sprinkles; bring to boil. Reduce heat, simmer 8 minutes.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Creamy Tomato-Balsamic Soup

This is mostly from Cooking Light (Oct 2005) but I made a few substitutions when I made it and it turned out wonderful. It has a rich creamy almost-smoky flavor.

1 C vegetable or beef broth, divided
1 T brown sugar
3 T balsamic vinegar
1 T soy sauce
1 C coarsely chopped onion
5 garlic cloves
2 28-oz cans whole tomatoes, drained
Cooking spray
3/4 C half-and-half
Freshly ground pepper (optional)

Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Combine 1/2 C broth, sugar, vinegar, and soy sauce in a small bowl. Coat a 13 X 9-inch baking with cooking spray and place onion, garlic, and tomatoes in it. Pour broth mixture over the top. Bake at 500 for 45 minutes or until vegetables are lightly browned. Cool for about 10 minutes.
Place tomato mixture in blender and add remaining broth and half-and-half. Process until smooth. Garnish with pepper. Serves: about 4.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Ideas Please!

I realize this isn't really a cooking post, but it is along the lines of home organization so I thought I'd ask all you "Marthas" out there for your help.

I've been working on cleaning out the second bedroom of our house where all our "stuff" seems to get stuffed. I've been going through boxes of stuff that I packed up while I still lived with my parents. Yeah, I'm that bad. :-P Anyway, I've run across a lot of my papers, etc. from high school, college, HSLDA, and so on. Does anyone have any ideas for the best way to store this kind of stuff? I don't really want to shove it all in a box and have it fall apart or get smashed any further than it already is, but I also don't want to take the time and effort to put it all in scrapbooks for now. Help!