• Stovetop Chili Mac


    Since my oldest has now asked to have chili mac 3 times since I first made it, I was planning on making it for dinner last night. Well, I got really busy doing some things around the house, and before I knew it it was too late to start the crock pot. So I adapted the crock pot recipe to make a stove top version and it was tasty and very well received.


    • 1 TBSP olive oil
    • 1 onion, finely chopped
    • 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 lb. 93% lean ground turkey
    • 1 TBSP + 1 tsp. chili powder
    • 3 tsp ground cumin
    • 1 tsp Mexican oregano
    • 3/4 tsp salt
    • 2 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
    • 1 15.5 oz. can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
    • 1/2 lb. pasta (elbow, baby shells, mini penne), cooked al dente
    • 1 c. frozen corn
    • 1/4 c. black olives, sliced
    • 2 c. grated cheddar or pepperjack cheese
    • 1/4 c. cilantro for garnish
    • Additional toppings of choice: Chipotle Tabasco, sour cream, salsa, or jalapenos


    1. In a medium skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and cook onions and garlic until soft; then add the chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, and turkey and cook until turkey is cooked through, stirring occasionally to break it up.
    2. Add the tomatoes and kidney beans to the meat mixture and combine. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes or so.
    3. Stir the cooked pasta, corn, and olives into the chili.
    4. Top with cheese and sprinkle with cilantro and/or any of the other toppings.

    Chili Mac:


  • Seoul-ful Chicken with Minted Cucumber Salad


    These recipes are adapted from recipes in the April 2008 issue of Cooking Light, and they are both delicious! Very bold refreshing flavors that make for a tasty summer meal.

    Seoul-ful Chicken Ingredients:

    • 1 lb. chicken breasts
    • 1/4 cup soy sauce
    • 2 tablespoons dark sesame oil
    • 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
    • 1 tablespoon honey
    • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
    • 4 teaspoons sesame seeds, toasted

    Cucumber Salad Ingredients:

    • 1 English cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, and thinly sliced (about 2 1/2 cups)
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 cup minced shallots
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
    • 1 tablespoon seasoned rice vinegar
    • 1 tablespoon honey
    • 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
    • 1 serrano or jalapeno chile, seeded and minced


    1. Chicken Marinade: Combine soy sauce and next 5 ingredients (through garlic) in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add chicken to soy sauce mixture in bag; seal. Marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes, turning bag occasionally.
    2. Cucumber Salad: Combine cucumber, shallots, and next 6 ingredients (through chile) in a large bowl; toss gently. Cover and set aside.
    3. Grill chicken.
    4. Serve chicken with cucumber salad and rice.

    Seoul-ful Chicken with Minted Cucumber Salad:


  • Blue Cornbread


    Yes I’ve made cornbread before, but this time I used blue cornmeal instead of yellow cornmeal, and what a treat it was! Everyone loved it, but that doesn’t surprise me one bit.

    • 1 1/4 c. flour
    • 1 c. corn meal
    • 3 tsp. baking powder
    • 1/3 c. sugar
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1 egg
    • 1 c. milk
    • 1/3 c. vegetable oil


    1. Sift flour, corn meal, baking powder, sugar and salt together
    2. Add the egg, milk and oil
    3. Mix and put batter in a greased 8×8 baking pan
    4. Bake at 350 for 1/2 hour or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

    Blue Cornbread:


  • Slow-Cooked Chile Con Carne


    This week’s crock pot recipe comes from the April 2007 issue of Cooking Light. It was really good, and not spicy, which was good for the kids, but we added some chipotle to our bowls to give the chile a bit more punch. I also made it thicker by making a cornstarch slury, because I like my chile a little thicker than this recipe turns out. -s really enjoyed it, and it’s one of those dishes that doesn’t taste like it was made from a crockpot.

    Our oldest has been asking for chili mac, so I mixed some of this chile with some pasta. He liked it, but he definitely loves that chile mac, so we’ll be having the chili mac next week.


    • 1 tsp. olive oil
    • 1 1/2 c. chopped onion
    • 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 lb. sirloin, cut into 1-inch cubes
    • 2 1/2 cups diced grape tomatoes
    • 1 TBSP chili powder
    • 2 tsp ground cumin
    • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
    • 1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
    • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
    • 1 (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium beef broth
    • 1/2 c. cooking liquid + 1 tsp. cornstarch
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 3 chipotles with adobo sauce, minced.


    1. Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, and beef to pan; cook 5 minutes or until beef is browned, stirring occasionally. Combine beef mixture, tomato, and next 6 ingredients (through broth) in an electric slow cooker. Cover and cook on HIGH for 3 hours or until beef is tender. Uncover; cook 30 minutes or until slightly thickened. If you’d like it thicker, remove about 1/2 c. of liquid and put in a bowl; then mix in 1 tsp. of cornstarch; dissolve the cornstarch; add back to crock, and bring to a boil. Stir in salt, if desired.
    2. Top with chipotle, sour cream or whatever you like.

    Slow-Cooked Chile Con Carne:


  • Chicken Chow Mein


    This was a clean the produce drawers out kind of meal. I’ve made Chow Mein, once before, and the additional veggies and chicken made this dish very good, and very kid friendly. I try to sneak as much veggies as I can into my kids…sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. Tonight they weren’t much into the veggies, but -s and I really enjoyed the dish!


    • 2 tsp. sesame oil
    • 4 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 hunk of ginger (2 inches long), minced
    • 1 lb. chicken breasts, bite size
    • 1 onion, sliced
    • 1 eggplant, peeled and chopped
    • 1 16 oz. bag of broccoli cole slaw mix
    • 3/4 c. Yoshida’s Gourmet Sauce (add more if you like a stronger flavored sauce after you mix everything together)
    • 1 8 oz. bag snap peas
    • 1 8 oz. can sliced water chestnuts
    • 1 8 oz. can sliced bamboo shoots
    • 1 box of whole grain spaghetti
    • crunchy chow mein noodles for garnish


    1. Get the pasta water started and cook pasta according to directions on box.
    2. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet or wok over medium high heat. Add garlic and ginger, cook for 1 minute, then add the chicken, saute until chicken is cooked through. Remove chicken from skillet, keeping as much as the garlic and ginger in the pan as possible, and keep the chicken warm.
    3. Add onion, eggplant, and broccoli slaw to the skillet, and saute until veggies begin to warm. Add Yoshida’s and continue cooking until your veggies are done, about 5 to 7 minutes…not exact science here.  Add the snap peas, water chestnuts and bamboo shoots, and toss to warm.
    4. When pasta is done put it in a large bowl; then add the cooked chicken and the veggies, and toss to combine.  Add more Yoshida’s if desired. Serve with crunchy chow mein noodles on top.

    Chicken Chow Mein:


  • Curried Chicken Salad Sandwiches


    I love curry chicken salad. It’s so easy and so delicious. The sweetness of the grapes goes so well with the curry.


    • 1 1/2 c. shredded chicken or a large can (12 1/2 oz) of white chunk chicken breast
    • 1/4 c. mayo
    • 1 tsp. curry powder
    • 1/2 c. grapes sliced
    • Rolls and lettuce


    1. Combine chicken, mayo, curry powder, and grapes.
    2. Place the chicken salad on a roll and add some lettuce.

    Curried Chicken Salad Sandwiches:


  • Chicken Chipotle Taco Salad


    This recipe comes from the August 2006 issue of Cooking Light. Great salad for a warm summer day…flavorful, light and refreshing, yet filling and delicious!



    • 1/3 c. chopped fresh cilantro
    • 2/3 c. light sour cream
    • 1 TBSP minced chipotle chile, canned in adobo sauce
    • 1 tsp. ground cumin
    • 1 tsp. chili powder
    • 4 TBSP fresh lime juice
    • 1/4 tsp. salt


    • 4 c. chopped lettuce or mixed greens
    • 2 c. chopped roasted skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 2 breasts)
    • 1 c. cherry tomatoes, halved
    • 1/2 c. diced peeled avocado
    • 1/3 c. thinly vertically sliced red onion
    • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
    • 1 (15-ounce) can no-salt-added whole-kernel corn, rinsed and drained


    1. To prepare dressing, combine first 7 ingredients, stirring well.
    2. To prepare salad, combine lettuce and remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Drizzle dressing over salad; toss gently to coat. Serve immediately.

    Chipotle Chicken Taco Salad:


  • Blue Cornmeal Pancakes


    We have the great luxury of living near the War Eagle Mill. They have a fabulous selection of organic whole grains. This past weekend we took the kids there to see the operating water powered grist mill, which they were fascinated by. We bought a whole bunch of the grains. We are also super lucky that since it’s local, even Walmart carries much of their grains, but the Mill has a huge selection.

    We bought some blue cornmeal , and right on the sack of cornmeal is a recipe for Blue Cornmeal Pancakes, and they were delicious!


    • 1 c. blue cornmeal
    • 1/2 c. flour or whole wheat flour
    • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
    • 1 TBSP sugar
    • 1 1/4 c. milk
    • 1 egg, lightly beaten
    • 1 TBSP vegetable oil
    • 1 + tsp. vegetable oil
    • Butter and Syrup


    1. In a medium size bowl, mix dry ingredients together; stir in egg, 1 TBSP oil, and milk.
    2. Preheat griddle on medium heat, coat with 1 tsp. oil. Pour out batter by 1/4 cupfuls to make a small griddle cake. Flip when edges are dry and cakes are bubbly.
    3. Serve with butter and syrup.

    Blue Cornmeal Pancakes:


  • Sweet and Sour Chicken


    I found this recipe at Stephanie’s Kitchen and thought it sounded really good. I gave it a whirl and it tasted really good. -s thought it was good, but too vinegary. He’s not a big fan of vinegar. I used cider vinegar in this recipe, but interestingly he loved the sweet and sour sauce recipe I made a few days ago, and in that recipe I used rice wine vinegar. When I make this recipe again, I will certainly use rice wine vinegar!


    • olive oil
    • 1 onion, sliced thick
    • 1 green or red pepper, cut in bite size pieces
    • 6 TBSP flour
    • 1 1/2 tsp. salt, divided
    • 3/4 tsp. pepper, divided
    • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
    • Broccoli
    • 1/4 c. brown sugar
    • 1/4 c. rice wine vinegar
    • 1 TBSP soy sauce
    • 1 20 oz. can pineapple tidbits, juice reserved
    • 1/2 c. chicken broth
    • 1/8 c. cornstarch
    • Hot rice


    1. Heat some olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat; then add the onions and peppers and cook until the veggies just start to get some color and are tender but are still crisp, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from skillet and keep warm.
    2. Combine flour, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. pepper and chicken in a ziploc bag. Toss to coat. Heat more olive oil (about 1/4 c.) in the same skillet you cooked the onions and peppers. Add the chicken and saute until the chicken is browned and cooked through. Remove the chicken from the skillet and keep warm.
    3. Meanwhile blanch broccoli in salted water, until tender; drain and set aside.
    4. Combine the brown sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, pineapple juice, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper in the skillet and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, combine the broth and cornstarch in a small bowl. Once the skillet mixture comes to a boil, add the broth and bring back to a boil. Add the onions, peppers, pineapple tidbits, chicken, and blanched broccoli; toss to coat and serve over rice.

    Sweet and Sour Chicken: