Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Teak Dog Tuesday!

Last week, Teak had some fun play/swim time with his friend Kate. 

Unfortunately, Teak was a terrible guest and tried to take Kate's bone when we left.

It was pretty cute, but he eventually left the bone.

Hope everyone has a good week!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Cheesy Seafood Gratin

Need some good meat-free recipes now that Lent is here?  This one was outstanding!  This would be such a treat for your family or dinner guests lucky enough to have it.  It makes 4 servings.
I really can't say enough good things about it.  It was creamy and filling and just excellent.  This was a recipe I got a few weeks ago from the Publix ad.  The original recipe called for two small lobster tails, but I don't have a clue how to cook those, so I just loaded up on shrimp.  It also called for a can of cream of shrimp soup, but I used cream of mushroom and had great results.  The recipe below reflects that. 

The recipe also calls for 10 ounces of lobster bisque, and I used a container of Publix's bisque.  I don't know that I've noticed or seen this at other grocery stores (a la Winn Dixie or Walmart); then again, if you have a Whole Foods or Central Market another wonderfully fancy grocery store nearby, you can probably find something very similar. 

Try this!  I hope you enjoy this as much as we did.

Cheesy Seafood Gratin

2 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
8 oz rotini pasta
0.8 lbs shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 cups Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 (10.75 oz) can cream of mushroom soup
1 (10 oz) container lobster bisque
1/2 cup bread crumbs
2 tsp grill seasoning

Preheat oven to 375.  Cook and drain pasta according to package directions.  Heat a large saute pan over medium.  Cook shrimp until cooked through and no longer pink, 3-4 minutes. 

Combine cheese, soup, bisque, pasta, and shrimp min a large bowl until blended; tranfer to a 2-qt baking dish.  Sprinkle bread crumbs across the top of the mixture, and dot with butter.  Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden and bubbly. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Teak Dog Tuesday - Mardi Gras Edition

Happy Mardi Gras!

If you haven't celebrated yet, consider making one of these amazing King Cakes I posted last year. 

This one from scratch is delicious and very impressive.  

Also, this shortcut King Cake is much faster (and still wonderful). 

Monday, February 20, 2012

Banana Bread Muffins

To be more precise, I made banana bread muffin tops since my sister gave me two awesome muffin top pans (similar to the ones you can order here).  Thanks again, Amanda.

Buck loves breakfast breads and muffins, and I came through for him last week in a big way.  We couldn't get enough of these!  They were amazing!  (It probably had to do something with the sour cream in the batter.)  We highly recommend these.

I modified a recipe from AllRecipes, and it made 10 heaping muffin tops.  If you make it as a loaf of bread, bake it at 350 for 60 minutes in a 9"x5" loaf pan. 

Banana Bread Muffins

1 3/4 cup flour (I used whole wheat)
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp lemon juice
3 bananas, mashed (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350.  Spray muffin top pans with cooking spray. 

Cream together butter and sugar.  Add eggs, vanilla, and lemon juice; mix well.  In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.  Stir into butter mixture until smooth.  Fold in sour cream and bananas.

Put two heaping tablespoons of batter into each muffin top cup.  Bake for 22 minutes, turning the pans after 12 minutes.  Cool pans on racks before removing muffin tops.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Chicken and Cheese Flautas

We love Mexican food, and this was a great Mexican dish that's easy to make at home.   You could use a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store, but we still love the crock pot salsa chicken.  These didn't take long to make, and you could easily add ingredients to your liking--maybe black beans inside or guacamole as a dipping sauce.

I got this recipe from Framed Cooks; she has such beautiful photos (and delicious recipes).  Check her out, if you haven't yet. 

We'll make these again!  Hope you try them and like them!

Chicken and Cheese Flautas

4 large flour tortillas
1 cup shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup shredded cooked chicken
1 tsp cumin
1/2 cup salsa
Vegetable oil
Sour cream

In a small bowl, combine cheese, chicken, and cumin.  Mix well.  Place about 1/4 cup chicken mixture on each warm tortilla.  Top each with one tablespoon of salsa.  Roll up tightly; secure each with a toothpick.  Brush filled tortillas with oil.

In a large skillet, cook filled tortillas over medium heat for 4-6 minutes or until filling is hot and tortillas are toasted, turning occasionally.  Remove toothpicks, and serve with sour cream and jalapenos.

Friday, February 10, 2012


I have to be honest.  These were incredible.  We wanted to go to happy hour at a restaurant, but I knew I could make happy hour food at the house, and these fit the bill perfectly.  They were awesome.  I wish I'd discovered them during football season. 

I used the 93/7 ground beef in an effort to not feel as guilty about mixing in mayonaisse and cheese, and I'm glad I made that decision.  I'm sure they'd be extra flavorful with 80/20, but like I said: mayonaisse and cheese are added on top of that.  Even though you will drain the extra grease, going lean on the meat doesn't hurt. 

The recipe is easy to double or triple, depending on your crowd (or just your appetite).  We didn't eat all twelve of ours, but we found that they reheat in the microwave nicely.

We ate these with fries and beer.  It was not a healthy night, but it was certainly a happy night. 


1 lb ground beef
12 dinner rolls, split in half (I used King's Hawaiian rolls)
1/2 (1oz) envelope onion soup mix
2 heaping Tbsp mayonaisse
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350.  In a skillet, combine ground beef with onion soup mix.  Cook and stir together over medium high heat until beef is crumbly, evenly browned, and no longer pink.  Drain and discard any excess grease.  Remove from heat.  When slightly cooled, stir the mayo and cheese into the ground beef mixture.

Slice the rolls in half sandwich style.  Place the bottoms of the rolls on a baking sheet that has been lined with foil and sprayed with cooking spray.  Place the meat mixture on top of the roll bottoms.  Replace the tops of the rolls.  Cover with another sheet of foil sprayed with cooking spray. 

Bake in the preheated oven until heated through and cheese has melted, about 30 minutes. 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Cheddar Chicken Tenders

This was a recipe my sister sent me, and we really enjoyed it.  I changed the original recipe to fit what I already had, so instead of using crushed Ritz crackers, I used some seasoned bread crumbs.  The sauce, which consists of cream of chicken soup, butter, and sour cream, makes this obviously decadent.  Awesome.

Next time, I'll dip the chicken in egg (instead of milk) before the cheese and bread crumbs.  Be aware that you'll have some trouble making the cheese stick; it'll fall off when you're trying to press the bread crumbs, so your bread crumb bowl will end up full of cheese.  Just get as much of it as you can on the chicken.  It'll all end up very tasty melted together later.

Cheddar Chicken Tenders

2 large chicken breasts
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/3 cup milk
1 cup Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 tsp dried parsley
1 (10oz) can cream of chicken soup
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp sour cream

Preheat oven to 400.  Cut chicken breasts into strips.  Place milk, cheese, and breadcrumbs into three containers.  Dip each strip of chicken into the milk, then the cheese, and then the breadcrumbs.  Don't worry if some of the cheese falls off.  Spray a 9"x13" casserole dish with cooking spray, and place the prepared chicken in the dish.  Continue with the rest of the chicken.  Sprinkle the dried parsley over the chicken.  Cover the dish with foil, and bake for 35 minutes.  Remove the foil, and bake for another 10 minutes. 

In a medium sized sauce pan, combine the cream of chicken soup, sour cream, and butter with a whisk. Stir it over medium high heat until the sauce is heated through. Serve over the chicken.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Teak Dog Tuesday

One of my favorite things about Teak is his ability to pass out wherever he is, whenever he's tired.  He's so stinkin' cute.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Cream Cheese Jalapeno Crescent Poppers

These are just as amazing as the name suggests.  They're also extremely easy to make, and you probably already have all the ingredients in your refrigerator.  They were fantastic as an appetizer when we tried them, and it isn't difficult to have five of them without batting an eye.  Try them!  You will love them! 

Cream Cheese Jalapeno Crescent Poppers

1 can crescent roll dough
8 oz cream cheese, softened
2 oz pickled jalapenos, diced
1 Tbsp sugar

Preheat oven to 350. In a bowl, combine the cream cheese, jalapenos, and sugar until mixed thoroughly.  Unroll crescent roll dough into two long and skinny rectangles.  Press the seams together.  With the back of the spoon, spread half of the cream cheese mixture onto one of the rectangles. 

Once the filling has been spread on one of the crescent roll rectangles, roll up dough on the long end (so you'll have a long, skinny roll).  Cut the roll into 16 pieces, and place each piece cream cheese-side-up (and down) on a greased cookie sheet.  Bake for 13 minutes.  Repeat with remaining crescent rectangle and remaining half of cream cheese mixture.  Enjoy!