Thursday, December 29, 2016

French Lasagna (Breakfast)

Found the recipe I am going to be making for New Year's Day breakfast at the farm!!

French Lasagna (Breakfast)  

Nigella Lawson recipe

for Donald

4 cups whole milk
1 clove garlic, peeled and lightly crushed
4 large eggs, beaten together
5 stale croissants, halved lengthwise (like sandwiches)
5 thin slices ham
1 4-ounce ball fresh mozzarella, cut into 5 slices
8 ounces grated cheddar

In a medium saucepan, combine milk and garlic, and place over high heat until almost at boiling point. 

Remove from heat and allow to rest for 15 to 20 minutes. 

Discard garlic, and drizzle eggs into milk while whisking vigorously. Set aside.

Place bottoms of croissants, cut side up, into a baking dish large enough to hold them snugly in a single layer. (A 10 x 13-inch dish works well.) 

On each croissant half, arrange a slice of ham and a slice of mozzarella. Top with remaining croissant halves, cut side down.

Sprinkle about 2/3 of cheddar on croissants, and pour milk mixture over everything. Press croissants down with a fork so they are almost covered by milk, repeating once or twice until tops absorb some of liquid. Set aside for 20 minutes; meanwhile, heat oven to 325 degrees.

Sprinkle remaining cheddar over croissants. Bake until puffy, golden and set, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Sunday, December 18, 2016


Christmas Eve dinner at my house this year:

Tourtière is a traditional Québecois meat pie typically served around Christmastime.

Classic French Canadian Tourtière

1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground beef
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 medium-large baked potatoes, mashed with skins removed (or about 1 cup of mashed potatoes)
3/4 cup beef or vegetable broth
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. salt

For the Butter Pie Crust:
2 1/2 cup flour of choice
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into small cubes - VERY COLD
1 cup ice cold water

For the egg wash:
1 egg
1 Tbsp. water

In a large skillet or wok, combine the finely chopped onion with the olive oil and sautée for about 10 minutes on medium heat, until onions are soft and golden.

With your hands, mix the ground pork and beef together in a bowl. Add the mixed ground meat to the onions and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring it to break up the meat so it doesn't clump together.

Add all the remaining ingredients (broth, spices, mashed potato, salt and pepper) and mix together.

Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for about 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat. Taste the meat mixture and add a bit more salt, pepper, or spices, to suit your preferences. Cool in the fridge for about 2 hours, until completely chilled. (You can do this the day before).

To make the pastry:
Using a food processor or a pastry blender, chop up the butter into the flour and salt until it is small and crumbly, the size of very small peas.

Pour in 1/2 cup of the ice cold water and mix into the flour.

Add more water, 1 tablespoonful at a time, until the dough comes together into a ball. DON'T OVER PROCESS - use your hands to get the mass to finally come together.

Form two balls and flatten them slightly into discs. Wrap and cover them in wax paper or plastic, and let them rest in the fridge for 1 hour.  (You can do this the day before, too)

Remove from the fridge and allow to sit at room temperature for 5 minutes. Roll out each disc on a floured surface to about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thickness. (Or use premade crust if time is a pinch)

Line a 9 inch pie plate with the first circle of dough. Spoon in all the meat filling, patting it down lightly to compress it a bit.

Brush the pie rim with water and place the second circle of dough on top, pressing the edges together to seal. Trim and flute as desired.  I like to use little mini-cutters on left-over crust dough and "glue them on with the egg wash.

The egg wash is what will give your tourtière a golden glow, so don't skip this step! Beat the egg and water together and brush the mixture all over the top of the crust and around the edges.
Cut some steam vents on top of your pie. (or cut out three designs with those mini-cutters.

With the rack in the bottom third of the oven, bake at 375F for about 50 minutes or until the top of the crust is golden.

Yield: Makes 1 meat pie, about 8 servings

Traditionally served with a good tomato-based ketchup - I love Stonewall Kitchen's with this.

Basic Monkey/Gorilla Bread

Great fun to make with kids!!

Monkey/Gorilla Bread

Ingredients:3 (12 ounce) packages refrigerated biscuitdough
1 cup white sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup margarine
1/2 cup raisins (optional)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). 
Grease one 9 or 10 inch tube/Bundt(R) pan.
Mix white sugar and cinnamon in a plastic bag. 
Cut biscuits into quarters. 
Shake 6 to 8 biscuit pieces in the sugar cinnamon mix. 
Arrange pieces in the bottom of the prepared pan. 
Continue until all biscuits are coated and placed in pan. If using nuts and raisins, arrange them in and among the biscuit pieces as you go along.
In a small saucepan, melt the margarine with the brown sugar over medium heat. Boil for 1 minute. Pour over the biscuits.
Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 35 minutes. Let bread cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a plate. Do not cut! The bread just pulls apart.


You can up the ante from Monkey to Gorilla by flattening out the balls of dough and wrapping around small cubes of cream cheese, chunks of banana, or bits of chocolate (or all 3!) before reforming into a ball and THEN rolling in the sugars and cinnamon.

Pizza Monkey bread

I used to make breakfast sweet monkey bread for staff luncheons.  Having those little "pull-apart" rolls is so much fun.  I'm finding more and more of these recipes - my next task is to start experimenting with my OWN biscuit dough instead of using the refrigerated stuff (too many ingredients I can't pronounce means I don't really like to use them!!)   My Bundt pan may never get put away again!!

Easy Pull Apart Pizza Bread

2 Cans of pizza Dough or Biscuits (I pick up a ball of dough from my local pizzeria!)
2 cups Mozzarella cheese (or your favorite cheese)
2 tablespoons of a really good Italian seasoning  - Penzey's is so good
⅓ cup olive oil
1 – 8 oz package of pepperoni
1 cup Parmesan cheese
Optional: Add a ½ teaspoon of fresh garlic or garlic powder

pizza sauce (to serve on the side)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
Cut pizza dough or biscuits into quarters (or pinch off small bits of dough from the dough ball and quickly roll into a small ball the size of a cocktail meatball)
Cut the pepperoni into smaller pieces
Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl and toss so that the oil is spread evenly on each piece of dough
Bake for about 30 minutes (or until the top is brown and the center is thoroughly cooked) TIP: Be sure to check it in the middle before you pull it out. If the middle is still not cooked thoroughly be sure to leave it in another 5 minutes at a time until it’s done.
Flip over onto a plate while it’s still hot.
Serve with a side sauce

Mexican Bubble Bread

I used to make breakfast sweet monkey bread for staff luncheons.  Having those little "pull-apart" rolls is so much fun.  I'm finding more and more of these recipes - my next task is to start experimenting with my OWN biscuit dough instead of using the refrigerated stuff (too many ingredients I can't pronounce means I don't really like to use them!!)   My Bundt pan may never get put away again!!

Mexican Bubble Bread

2 12 oz cans of refrigerated Biscuits tubes - cut in quarters
1 1/2 cup of Mexican Cheese
1 1/2 cup of Mozzarella Cheese
1 stick of butter melted
1 4.5 oz can of chopped Green Chilies
1 1/2 teaspoon of dried parsley
chopped cilantro - optional
jar of jalapenos - optional

Heat oven to 350*
If you have a non stick bundt pan there's no need to grease your pan - grease your a regular ceramic/metal pan prior to adding any ingredients.
Melt butter
In a large bowl, mix butter, cheeses, green chilies, cilantro & dried parsley together
Then open biscuit tubes & cut them in quarters. Once you're done, gently toss the biscuit quarters in a large mixing bowl with the other ingredients.
Place in bundt Pan & gently pat down your mixture to even it all out.
Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Please check to make sure the center of your Bubble Bread is cooked thoroughly. Serve with Chili or Soup.

Sausage Egg and Cheese Breakfast Bread

I used to make breakfast sweet monkey bread for staff luncheons.  Having those little "pull-apart" rolls is so much fun.  I'm finding more and more of these recipes - my next task is to start experimenting with my OWN biscuit dough instead of using the refrigerated stuff (too many ingredients I can't pronounce means I don't really like to use them!!)   My Bundt pan may never get put away again!!

Sausage Egg and Cheese Breakfast Bread

This breakfast bread is so yummy, but may be a little hard to pull apart, so you could just slice it. We also used some Cholula hot sauce to liven it up a bit!

3 cans of regular biscuits (generic are perfectly fine)
8 eggs
splash of milk
1 tsp ground mustard
1lb of breakfast sausage
1 4oz pkg of shredded cheese (your choice, cheddar or mexican is best!)

hot sauce of choice, Cholula, or ranch dressing

Brown the sausage in a skillet and drain well. Beat the eggs into a bowl and add the splash of milk, ground mustard, and salt and pepper to taste. Slice the biscuits into quarters. In batches, dip the biscuits into the egg mixture and place in a bundt pan.

Layer in biscuits, sausage, cheese into 3 layers.

Pour any leftover egg mixture on top.

Bake at 350 for about 35-40 minutes or until the top is golden brown.

Serve immediately! Goes great with Cholula, which is more flavorful than regular hot sauce. Or you could dip in ranch!

Herb and Cheese Monkey Bread

I used to make breakfast sweet monkey bread for staff luncheons.  Having those little "pull-apart" rolls is so much fun.  I'm finding more and more of these recipes - my next task is to start experimenting with my OWN biscuit dough instead of using the refrigerated stuff (too many ingredients I can't pronounce means I don't really like to use them!!)   My Bundt pan may never get put away again!!

Savory Herb & Cheese Monkey Bread

2 (16 ounce) cans of jumbo refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
5 or so different herbs and/or cheeses, as coatings (such as fresh chopped parsley, chopped dill, chopped almonds, grated Parmesan, and shredded cheddar)

ure:Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously grease a 9- to 10-inch Bundt pan with butter, or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
Stir garlic salt into melted butter. Cut each biscuit in half and roll into a ball. Dip each biscuit ball in butter, then roll in desired coating. Arrange biscuits in the pan so that the various coatings are alternated.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until biscuits are done and surface is golden. You may want to start checking bread at about 25 minutes, and if it's browning too quickly, lay a sheet of aluminum foil on top for the remainder of the baking time.
Cool in pan for 5 minutes. Run a thin, soft rubber spatula around the edge and down the sides of the pan to loosen any stuck cheese. Invert onto a plate, then lay serving platter on top and flip bread over onto serving platter so that the attractive side is on top.

If you wish to assemble the bread ahead of time, you may do so, then cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours, up to overnight. Take the pan out of the refrigerator as you preheat the oven, and then bake as directed.

If you don't want to alternate your biscuit coatings, you can mix the cheese and herbs together and use the same coating for all of the biscuits. Whatever you decide, you need to use some sort of cheese on at least some of the pieces since that's what holds the monkey bread together once you unmold it.

Keep in mind that dried herbs are more concentrated than fresh herbs, so adjust amounts accordingly.

You may use just about any type of refrigerated biscuits or bread dough. You just want the total amount of dough used to be around 32 ounces.

Bacon Egg and Cheese Monkey Bread

I used to make breakfast sweet monkey bread for staff luncheons.  Having those little "pull-apart" rolls is so much fun.  I'm finding more and more of these recipes - my next task is to start experimenting with my OWN biscuit dough instead of using the refrigerated stuff (too many ingredients I can't pronounce means I don't really like to use them!!)   My Bundt pan may never get put away again!!

Bacon Egg and Cheese Monkey Bread

Author:Cathy Trochelman

*Ingredients listed are for a 6 cup bundt pan. If you are using a 12 cup pan, double the ingredients.
1 (16 oz.) can refrigerated biscuits
4 Tbsp. salted butter, melted
6 large eggs, scrambled
½ pound bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
2 Tbsp. fresh chives
For sauce:
¼ c. lowfat mayo
¼ c. sour cream
1 tsp. lemon juice
½ tsp. dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cook bacon and eggs; set aside.
Remove biscuits from package and cut into sixths.
Place biscuit pieces in a gallon size ziplock bag and toss with 4 Tbsp. melted butter.
Add scrambled eggs, bacon, shredded cheese, and fresh chives to the bag and shake to distribute.
Pour mixture into a greased 6 cup bundt pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
While bread is baking, combine sauce ingredients in a small saucepan and heat, stirring, over medium heat until smooth.
Cool in pan 5-10 minutes, then use a knife or spatula to loosen edges.
Invert bread onto a plate and drizzle with sauce before serving.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Kielbasa and Barbecue Beans

Cold Weather Food.  Can't beat a dump=and=run meal when you're so busy!!!
From "Mom on Time Out"

Kielbasa and Barbecue Beans

2 15 oz cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 15.8 oz Great Norther beans, drained and rinsed
1 15.25 oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 onion, diced
½ cup barbecue sauce
¾ cup ketchup
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp mustard
1 tsp chili powder
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
½ cup maple syrup
¼ cup molasses
1 14.5 oz can chicken broth
½ lb bacon, cooked, cut into bite size pieces
2 lbs Kielbasa, cut into bite size pieces

In a large slow cooker, add all of the ingredients except for the kielbasa and stir gently to combine.
Place the kielbasa on top and cover with the lid.
Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or high for 4 to 5 hours. Stir in the kielbasa before serving.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Thanksgiving Pumpkin Lasagna

Layers are always good!  Right?
This one is good for those adverse to making pies.  It's also just a good fall dessert.

Thanksgiving Pumpkin Lasagna


For crust:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup butter-softened
1/2 cup toasted walnuts (or pecans)-chopped

For cheesecake layer:
8 oz. cream cheese- softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup whipped topping

For pumpkin layer:
2 1/2 cups milk
3 small pkgs. vanilla instant pudding mix
15 oz Pumpkin puree
1 tsp. cinnamon

For topping:
1 cups whipped topping
1/4 cup toasted walnuts (or pecans)-chopped

Procedure: Preheat the oven at 350 F and spray 9 x 9 inch baking dish.
Mix flour, butter and 1/2 cup walnuts, press into a sprayed baking dish and bake for 15 minutes, remove from the oven and let it cool completely.
Mix cream cheese and powdered sugar until it’s light and fluffy, add 1 cup whipped topping and spread over cooled crust. Set in the fridge while making pumpkin mixture.
Mix milk and vanilla instant pudding mix, add pumpkin puree and cinnamon and mix until it’s smooth. Spread over top of cheesecake layer.
Spread remaining 1 cup of whipped topping and sprinkle chopped walnuts and set in the fridge for at least 3 hours.

Goat Cheese Toasts

And another appetizer....

Cheese Toasts with Honey

4 ounces goat cheese (1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons honey
16 baguette slices, toasted
2 grapefruit, peeled and segmented
16 slices of salami
freshly ground black pepper

In a small bowl combine goat cheese and honey. 

Spread mixture on toasted baguette slices. 

Layer on a thin slice of salami and grapefruit sections. 

Top with a drizzle of honey and freshly ground black pepper.

Creamy Stuffed Mini Peppers

Always on the look-out for appetizers.  I love to "graze"!!!

Creamy Stuffed Mini-Peppers

12 fresh jalapeno chile peppers* and/or miniature sweet peppers
1 8-ounce package reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel), softened
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/2 - 1 canned chipotle chile pepper in adobo sauce, finely chopped*
1/8 t salt
1/8 t black pepper
1 small tomato, seeded and chopped, liquid drained off

Cut the jalapeno chile peppers or miniature sweet peppers in half lengthwise. Remove the pepper seeds and ribs. Set aside. *** Wear gloves when working with the jalapenos!!
In a medium bowl stir together cream cheese, green onions, chipotle pepper, salt, and black pepper. 

Gently stir in the tomato.

To serve, spoon the cream cheese mixture into the pepper halves.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Maple Bacon Baked Brie

How much do I love Brie?  In any form - cold, room temp, baked, baked with a glaze, wrapped in a crust..... I  LOOOOOVVVVVVE Brie!!!!!

Maple Bacon Baked Brie

8 slices bacon, chopped
1/4 c. maple syrup
1 sheet puff pastry, defrosted
1 wheel Brie
Egg wash, for pastry
2 tbsp. pecans
Bread, for serving

Preheat oven to 400º. 

In a small skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until crispy, 8 minutes. Drain fat. 

Add maple syrup to skillet and stir until combined.

On a parchment-lined baking sheet, roll out puff pastry. 

Place brie on top and top with all but 1 or 2 tablespoons of maple-bacon mixture. 

Fold up each corner of puff pastry, brushing each with corner with egg wash.
Top with pecans and remaining maple-bacon mixture.
Bake until puff pastry is golden (cover with foil if too dark).
Serve immediately with bread, crackers, or toasted baguette slices.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Overnight French Toast (or is this Bread Pudding?)

Oh, yum. Slow Cooker Heaven

Overnight French Toast (or is this Bread Pudding?)

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 3-4 hours on high/6-8 hours on low
Serves: 8

Ingredients: 1 loaf (16 ounces/454 gr) of cinnamon swirl bread, cubed
6 large eggs
2 cups (475 mL) of half and half milk
1 cup (240 mL) of heavy cream
1/4 cup (50 gr) brown sugar (I used half of this the bread already has sugar)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons of rum (optional)
3/4 cups (110 gr) of coarsely chopped walnuts
3/4 cups (110 gr) raisins
1/8 teaspoon of salt

Cube the bread and leave it out overnight so it goes stale.
Coat your slow cooker with cooking spray and place the bread in it, covering its base. 

In a large bowl, combine the eggs, the half and half, the heavy cream, sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and rum (if you choose to use it). Whisk together and pour mixture over the bread cubes, making sure they're completely covered.
Sprinkle the walnuts and raisins over the mixture and cook for 3-4 hours on high or 6-8 hours on low.
TIP: Substitute the raisins and chopped walnuts for chocolate chips or serve with maple syrup, a little bit of cream cheese and a side of fresh fruit. 

This is also insanely good with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of dulce de leche as a dessert.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Tina Shonk's Crockpot Chicken and Noodles

I can't wait to try this!  Perfect fall weather dinner for when I'm out doing yard work.

Tina Shonk's Crockpot Chicken and Noodles

Ingredients :
1 24 ounce package – frozen egg noodles
2 – 14.7 oz cans – cream of chicken soup – sometimes I use 1 can chicken and 1 can cream of celery
1 stick (1/2) cup butter – cut into pieces
1 – 32 oz chicken broth – may want extra to thin out, if too thick. The frozen noodles thicken the broth
mixed vegetables – optional
Chicken bouillon to taste – optional – I add about a teaspoon of better than bouillion chicken flavored paste – for a richer chicken flavor
6 small boneless, skinless chicken breasts or 4 large
salt & pepper to taste – can add some parsley too if desire

Salt & pepper chicken breasts and place in the bottom of crock pot. 

Spoon soup over the chicken. (I whisk the bouillon with the broth and pour over soup.)

Cut butter into several pats and place pieces evenly over soup.
Place lid on pot and turn to low. Cook for 6 hours.
Remove chicken and tear into pieces. Add back to pot.
Now add noodles and if adding veggies add now. Cook for another 2 hours or until noodles are desired tenderness. I stir a few times during last 2 hours. ( You may want to add more broth to thin out at the end of cooking, as the home made noodles thicken the broth, which we like. )
Sprinkle with parsley and mix in, if using at the end of cooking.
Salt & pepper if needed and Serve. Yum!

Thanks, Tina!!!!!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Olive Garden Chicken Gnocchi Soup

Nights are getting colder, leaves are falling - it's time for soup!!

Chicken Gnocchi Soup

1 pound store-bought gnocchi
2 cups cooked chicken breast, cut into small cubes
1 1/2 cups spinach leaves, chopped
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup white onion, chopped
3/4 cup carrots, finely chopped or julienned
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 sprigs rosemary
2 cloves garlic, minced
2-3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 3/4 cups heavy cream (you can also use light - just as good!)
1 1/2 cups parmesan cheese, grated, divided
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg


Cook gnocchi according to packaging directions. 

Heat olive oil in a large pan or skillet over medium-high heat and saute onion and carrots until softened, but not browned. 5-7 minutes.
Add minced garlic during the last 2 minutes and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant. 

Season with salt and pepper and rosemary, and add chicken. 

Cook until chicken is lightly browned and coated in cooking juices. 

Pour in chicken broth and lemon juice, and stir together, then pour in cream. 

Reduce stovetop heat to medium-low and stir in parmesan cheese. Sprinkle in nutmeg and let simmer for several minutes, or until thickened. 

Add gnocchi and spinach to the mixture and cook until warmed through and coated in sauce. 

Remove rosemary sprigs and serve immediately, garnished with more cheese.

This one screams for warm cheesy garlic bread and a nice bottle of wine!

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Roasted Asparagus and Mushroom Carbonara

This one will never fly - Carlene doesn't do asparagus.  But it's one of my favorite veggies.  And, since I've never met a pasta I didn't like, I know this one is a winner.  

Carbonara is always yummy!  (In fact, it was a regular veggie-less carbonara that inspired the cartoons on the title page of the Three Giraffes sniffing the air at the farm!!!)

Roasted Asparagus and Mushroom Carbonara

1-½ pounds asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
8 ounces mushrooms, quartered
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 pound dry spaghetti
4 large eggs
8 ounces bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup Parmesan, grated
Freshly cracked black pepper
Sea salt, to taste

Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit (220 degrees Celsius).
Place the asparagus and mushrooms on a sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and toss gently to evenly coat.
Roast the vegetables in the preheated oven for 20 to 30 minutes, until the vegetables start to caramelize, stirring halfway.
While the vegetables are roasting, bring 6 quarts of generously salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, stir, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until al dente. Reserve ½ cup of the cooking liquid before draining the pasta.
While the pasta is cooking, add the bacon to a large sauté pan and cook over medium heat. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until golden and crispy, and most of the fat has rendered off. Turn off the heat and drain all but 1 tablespoon of the rendered fat.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, Parmesan and a generous amount of the fresh cracked pepper until well-combined.

Return the sauté pan to medium heat. Add the garlic, and sauté for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
Add ¼ cup of the reserved cooking liquid to the sauté pan. Toss in the spaghetti and heat for a few minutes until the bubbling has subsided and much of the water has evaporated.
Remove the pan from the heat and add the egg mixture to the pasta while quickly stirring. Continue stirring until the egg mixture has thickened, adding additional cooking liquid if the sauce is too thick.
Season with black pepper and sea salt to taste. Gently toss the spaghetti with the roasted asparagus and mushrooms, and serve immediately. Garnish with additional Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Recipe from "TipHero"

Sunday, October 2, 2016



Pumpkin Chia Overnight Oats are creamy overnight oats with chia seeds to make them even more nutritious! They're the perfect healthy, grab 'n go breakfast!
Author: Flavor the Moments
2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
2 tablespoons chia seeds
2½ cups milk of your choice (I used almond milk)
½ cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup*
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice


Place the oats and chia seeds in a large bowl and stir to combine.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, pumpkin, maple syrup, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice. Add the wet ingredients to the oat mixture and stir to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight.
Serve with add-ins such chocolate chips, toasted pecans, pumpkin seeds, or coconut flakes and enjoy!

*Maple syrup may be substituted with the sweetener of your choice.
For a perfect grab 'n go breakfast, divide into glass jars or tupperware and store in the refrigerator.
Recipe by Flavor the Moments.

10-Minute Pumpkin Pie Energy Bites

10-Minute Pumpkin Pie Energy Bites

Makes 12 energy bites

1 cup rolled oats
¼ cup chopped walnuts
½ cup unsweetened creamy peanut butter
¼ cup coconut butter
½ cup pure maple syrup
¼ cup canned pumpkin
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 small pinch of sea salt


1. Start by adding the peanut butter and coconut butter to a saucepan on low heat, and stir until melted. Set aside.

2. Next, add the rolled oats and chopped walnuts to the base of a food processor, and process until finely ground. Add in the peanut butter mixture and the remaining ingredients, and pulse until super smooth.

3. Roll the dough into balls and place in a glass freezer-safe container.

4. Freeze for 15 minutes before serving, and refrigerate or freeze any leftovers.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Slow Cooker Garlic Ale Beef Sliders

This looks really good. I may have to watch a game this weekend if I want to be able to talk to my friends again, so THIS is going to have to be game-day food!!

Slow Cooker Garlic Ale Beef Sliders

1 three-pound beef chuck roast
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
4 garlic cloves
1 red onion, sliced
1 cup Italian dressing
1 cup beer (use your favorite!)
2 bay leaves
Hawaiian slider buns
Sliced Colby-Jack Cheese

Place the chuck roast into a 6-quart or larger slow cooker. Sprinkle the roast with the salt and pepper. Place the garlic cloves on top of the roast. Add the red onion, then pour over the Italian dressing and beer. Place the bay leaves on top.

Cover and cook on high for 6 hours or on low for 8-10. Don’t open the lid during the cooking time.
Discard bay leaves and shred the meat with 2 forks, smash the garlic with the back of a fork and stir the garlic into the shredded meat. Discard any fat, and drain off the grease. Serve the shredded meat on Hawaiian slider buns with the Colby-Jack Cheese. Melt the cheese under the broiler in the oven if desired. Enjoy!

Friday, September 30, 2016


The Monday Giraffe Kitchen at SDP is closed for a while, until I get this Achilles tendon issue sorted out.  Can't drive down (of course, it's the right foot!!)  Can't climb the hill to the house. Can't stand for long periods of time.  Definitely cannot walk back DOWN the hill to the car and then drive home!!  Just thinking about that makes my ankle hurt...

update: 8/31/16:  Slowly weaning off the cast.  Heading back to physical therapy.  Missing my puppies!!!  I'm hoping to have this all sorted out in eight weeks.  I HAVE learned patience this year:  achilles + cellulitis, followed by some issues stemming from intolerance of the antibiotics, followed by cellulitis, a rebound on the achilles and yet ANOTHER case of cellulitis. At least my vocabulary is improving from all the reading I've been doing!!  This year has been one for the books - in more ways than one.....

update: 10/1/16.  I've now been dealing with this for nine months.  ^$#$^&%$!!!  Making progress with the help of PT Heidi.  Out of the cast (mostly) except when the muscles begin to tire - no pain while in the cast as the tendon is not sliding over that sharp spur on the bone.  Heidi is convinced that I've been shifting my weight to the right foot to compensate for the pain I deal with in the left due to my lymphedema.  So we're working on walking, gait, foot placement as well as stretching, balance, and flexibility.  Still walking ONLY on level ground - which is why the farm is still out of reach at the moment.  Beginning to use the cycle to build up strength in the quads and hamstrings.  Increased pool workouts.  This month's goal is to build "standing endurance" in that tendon with attention to  not re-injuring it with the spur.   And so it goes.

update:  10/17/16.  Away from my PT for 2 weeks with a log list of homework to do on my own!! Every day I increase my heel raises and toe raises by 1.  Am also doing stairs "like a big girl" (albeit hanging onto the railing for dear life!). More pool walking. Increased tread water time this week to 20 minutes or 500 reps, whichever comes first (more next week).  Adding in treadmill walking every other day and recumbent bike - add 1/8 mile each time to walking and 30 seconds each time to bike. Add vertical time. Doc is still talking surgery and I am still telling him what to do with that idea. (Yes, I can be a real bee-yatch about this - but with lymphedema, ain't NO ONE cutting into my legs. I have enough problems already...) I WILL DO THIS!!!!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Chicken Lombardy

Mom used to make a dish similar to this.  I'm still trying to figure out what else she put in there - funny how the taste you "remember" is always different, isn't it?

Chicken Lombardy

8 oz package(s) sliced fresh mushrooms
2 tablespoon(s) butter melted
6 skinned and boned chicken breasts
1/2 cup(s) all-purpose flour
1/3 cup(s) butter
3/4 cup(s) marsala
1/2 cup(s) chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon(s) salt
1/8 teaspoon(s) pepper
1/2 cup(s) shredded mozarella cheese
1/2 cup(s) parmesan cheese
2 green onions chopped

Procedure:Cook mushrooms in 2 tablespoons butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, 3 to 5 minutes or just until tender. Remove from heat; set aside.

Cut each chicken breast in half lengthwise. Place chicken between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; flatten to 1/8 inch thickness, using a meat mallet or rolling pin.

Dredge chicken pieces in flour. Cook chicken in batches, in 1 to 2 tablespoons butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat 3 to 4 minutes on each side or until golden. Place chicken in a lightly greased 13 x 9 inch baking dish, overlapping edges. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken and butter. Reserving pan drippings in skillet. Sprinkle mushrooms evenly over chicken.

Add wine and broth to skillet. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in salt and pepper. Pour sauce over chicken. Combine cheeses and green onions; sprinkle over chicken.

Bake uncovered, at 450 degrees for 12 to 14 minutes until cheese melts

Friday, September 16, 2016

Pimento Cheese

Being the daughter of a true Southern girl, I grew up on pimento-cheese sandwiches.  Yeah, all the kids at school thought it was weird - but New Jersey just doesn't understand the impact of a good pimento cheese sandwich!  When I'm home from work sick, this is one of the comfort foods I turn to.  Mom's recipe was pretty simple - run a block of Longhorn colby and a jar of drained pimientos through the food grinder, add S/P, mayo and stir.   And since I've been on my own, I'm always willing to try a new version.   I have to admit - THIS one I found recently is really good.  So, make up a pitcher of sweet tea, grab some crackers or some decent bread, put some blues or Dixieland on in the background, and transport yourself to a simpler time.

Tupelo Honey Café’s Pimento Cheese

(Makes 2 cups)

8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
½ cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. stone-ground mustard
1 tsp. mustard powder
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. minced fresh parsley
½ cup finely diced roasted red bell pepper
Tortilla chips for serving

Combine the cheese, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, stone-ground mustard, mustard powder, salt, pepper, parsley, and roasted bell peppers in a large bowl. Transfer to a microwavable dish and microwave for about 20 seconds or until warm, or put in a baking dish in a pre-heated 350-degree oven for about 15 minutes or until heated through. Serve with tortilla chips.

Cauliflower Pizza Bites

I thought I was so clever substituting steamed and mashed cauliflower for mashed potatoes!!  And then I saw these on my news feed and HAD to try them!   (Hey! Pizza!!!!!  No carb pizza!!!!!!!)

Cauliflower Pizza Bites


1 large head cauliflower
2 large eggs
1 c. shredded mozzarella
1/4 c. shredded Parmesan
3 tbsp. finely chopped fresh basil
1 tbsp. garlic powder
kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 c. marinara
1/4 c. mini pepperoni

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. 

Grate cauliflower on the small side of box grater to form fine crumbs. Transfer to a large bowl.
Add egg, 1/3 mozzarella, Parmesan, 2 tablespoons basil, and garlic powder and season with salt and pepper. 

Form into small patties (they will be wet) and place on a greased baking sheet. Bake until golden, 20 minutes.
Top each cauli patty with a thin layer of marinara, remaining mozz, and mini pepperoni and bake until cheese melts and pepperoni crisps, 5 to 7 minutes more.
Garnish with remaining basil and serve.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Lazy Slob Swedish Meatballs

Because today I AM a lazy slob!!  But, hey!!  I voted!!  Never saw so many candidates for governor in all the years I've been here!!  And by the way, man on motorbike who hasn't taken a shower in a week - next time you come to a primary to vote, you have to declare D or R.  There's no "Independent" in a primary.  It would have helped the 18 people standing behind you if you actually KNEW who you were going to vote for before you waltzed in the door.  (And believe me, standing behind you while you argued with the poll official was PAINFUL!!)

Came home and got these going so I can attend to other stuff - like reading the new Harry Potter book!!!

Lazy Slob Swedish Meatballs 

(also known as "my mother would not approve of these")

Mix this all together:
1 can beef broth no or low sodium (or 1 pt water with 1 T better than boullon low sodium)
1 packet dry onion soup mix (why you want the low sodium!!)
2 T A1 steak sauce
1 can golden mushroom soup (or cream of mushroom) low sodium

Add in a 2 lb bag frozen meatballs (NOT the Italian kind - look for plain or Swedish on the package)
Stir to coat meatballs.

Cook on high 3-5 hours (or low 6-8)

Cook your noodles.

While noodles are cooking, stir 1 cup of sour cream into the meatballs and TURN THE COOKER OFF.  ("Cooked" sour cream curdles very quickly).

Drain the noodles.  Pile them on a platter and top with the meatball mixture.

If you're feeling virtuous, cook another vegetable.  Or not.

(If you use these for a party appetizer, keep the slow cooker on the lowest possible setting to keep the meatballs warm but not curdle the sour cream.)

If you want - you can also add 1 T of Worcestershire to the sauce.  And some dill, if you like the flavor.

Back to Harry........

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Bacon Jam

OK - I'm intrigued - I have to make this!!  Along with some apple butter - I think this is going to be on my Christmas gift-giving list this year!!!!

Bacon Jam

2 hours to prepare, serves 8
Print Save

1 pound thickly sliced bacon, chopped
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2/3 cup coffee
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

In a large pan or skillet over medium-high heat, cook bacon until browned and almost crispy.
Use a slotted spoon to transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate, then add onion to skillet and sauté over medium heat for 10-15 minutes, or until caramelized.
Add garlic and season with salt and pepper, and cook for 1 minute, or until fragrant.
Stir in coffee, water, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, brown sugar, honey and butter, then season with chili powder and cinnamon.
Bring mixture to a simmer and cook, stirring frequently (and scraping browned bits off the bottom of the skillet), for 3-4 minutes.
Return bacon to pan and cook for 1-2 hours over low heat, or until thickened.
Once thickened, place “jam” in food processor and pulse until desired consistency is reached.
Let cool and store in air-tight jars. Enjoy!

Monday, September 5, 2016

Crack Corn

Since I learned how to husk corn in the microwave, I'm enjoying corn on the cob more.  I remember husking hundreds of ears when on my uncle's farm when I was a kid.  My hands were sore for days!!!  Maybe that's why I dislike husking corn so much!!!!

Crack Corn

(I don't believe this is the "Jimmy crack corn and I don't care" corn of the song!!!  Who cares?? Yummy stuff!)

6 ears corn, husked
3 tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 c. melted butter
Lime wedges, for squeezing

Heat grill to high. Oil grates and add corn. Grill, turning, 5 minutes.
Baste, while grilling, until totally slathered in crack sauce and grill until charred and tender, 5 minutes more.
Squeeze with lime and serve. 

(Or if you're too "lazy" to husk the corn (like me) - do the microwave-husk method (put the whole ear in and cook for several minutes, slice off the stem end of the corn, grasp the silks and husky and squeeze the ear out the cut end) - and then do a fast grill with the crack sauce.)

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Stuffed Pepper Appetizer

Stuffed Pepper Appetizer

4 bell peppers, tops sliced off (or the mini-peppers, cut in half)
2 15- oz. cans black beans, rinsed
2 ears corn, kernels stripped
3/4 c. grated pepper Jack
3 scallions, thinly sliced
2 tsp. chili powder
Couple dashes of hot sauce
kosher salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large pot of simmering water, steam peppers until tender, 5 to 7 minutes, then drain and let cool. Once cool, halve and arrange in a large glass baking dish.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine black beans, corn, 1/2 cup pepper jack, 2 scallions, chili powder, and hot sauce and season with salt.
Spoon black bean mixture into bell peppers and sprinkle with more cheese. Bake until cheese is melted and mxture is warmed through, 7 to 10 minutes.
Garnish with scallions and serve.

Fantasy Sauce (for Pasta)

Fantasy Sauce for Pasta

10 ounces thin dried spaghetti, or other thin pasta
3 ounces bacon (about 3 strips)
3 leeks
1/2yellow onion
1handful baby spinach
2 tablespoons butter
Salt and black pepper
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup cream
3ounces grated Parmesan (optional)

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add your pasta and cook according to the directions on the package. Drain and set aside.

In a large skillet over medium heat, cook your bacon until it begins to brown. Add the chopped leeks, onions, spinach, and butter. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, for a few minutes, until the spinach wilts and vegetables soften.

Add the white wine to the pan and cook for a few minutes, until the wine reduces by about half.

Add the cream and simmer the sauce for about 10 minutes.

Toss the pasta with the sauce and serve topped with the grated Parmesan.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Pasta al Norma

I don't think I've met a pasta sauce I didn't like.  This one uses one of my favorite veggies:  eggplant!!  The salt trick removes some of the bitterness that some eggplants may have.  Look for smaller eggplants if your store carries them.  Try to not get ones that are bruised. I love how FAST this recipe comes together!!

Pasta al Norma

2 medium eggplants, about 12 ounces each, cut in 1-inch cubes (I leave some of the peel on - I pare strips of peel off before I start slicing and dicing.)
⅔ - 1 cup extra virgin olive oil (2T reserved)
2 pounds ripe plum tomatoes, very finely chopped (if you use fresh tomatoes, drop them in boiling water for 30 sec - 1 min first and slide the peel off. I then work over a mesh strainer to remove as many seeds as I can and catch that juice!)
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup basil leaves, torn + several leaves cut into thin strips (chiffonade)
1 pound spaghetti
Crushed red chile flakes, to taste
2 ounces coarsely grated ricotta salata - or 1 cup ricotta


Place eggplant in a colander, salt generously, set colander over a bowl and let sit at room temperature about 2 hours to draw off excess liquid. Rinse eggplant and dry on paper towels.

Heat oil in a large skillet on medium-high and sauté eggplant, in batches if necessary, until golden. Transfer to several thicknesses of paper towel. Pour off and reserve all but a fine slick of oil from the pan.

Reheat pan on medium, add tomatoes and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes are reduced and their liquid has evaporated. Fold in basil.

Meanwhile, bring a pot of salted water to a boil for the spaghetti. Cook until al dente. Drain, reserving about 1/2 cup pasta water.

Add pasta to tomato sauce. Return eggplant to pan and cook on low, mixing pasta with sauce ingredients. Add 2 tablespoons of oil, season with salt and chile if desired and moisten with some pasta water if needed.

Divide among plates or shallow bowls, scatter cheese and reserve basil on top and serve.

Provencal Chicken

Spring - I feel the need for "light" food.  After a winter of stews and pastas and casseroles, I'm looking forward to spring vegetables and bright colors on the table again.

Provencal Chicken

4 chicken legs or 8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ to ¾ cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons herbes de Provence
1 lemon, quartered
8 to 10 cloves garlic, peeled
4 to 6 medium-size shallots, peeled and halved
1 cup dry vermouth
4 sprigs of thyme, for serving (optional)

Heat oven to 400 degrees. 
Season the chicken with salt and pepper. 
Put the flour in a shallow pan, and lightly dredge the chicken in it, shaking the pieces to remove excess flour.
Swirl the oil in a large roasting pan, and place the floured chicken in it. 
Season the chicken with the herbes de Provence. 
Arrange the lemon, garlic cloves and shallots around the chicken, then add the vermouth to the pan.
Put the pan in the oven, and roast for 25 to 30 minutes, then baste it with the pan juices. 
Continue roasting for another 25 to 30 minutes, or until the chicken is very crisp and the meat cooked through.
Serve in the pan or on a warmed platter, garnished with the thyme.

from the NY Times Cooking pages

Sweet and Smoky Salmon

My favorite fish.  I try to look for the "wild" stuff instead of the farm-raised.  I think it has more flavor!  This was pretty good with a marinated cucumber salad, sliced tomatoes, and some grilled asparagus.

Sweet and Smoky Salmon

1/4 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons McCormick® Perfect Pinch® Salt Free Southwest Sweet 'n Smoky Seasoning, divided
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar, divided
1 pound salmon fillets
Orange Salsa:
2 cans (11 ounces each) mandarin oranges, drained and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 tablespoons finely chopped red bell pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 teaspoon McCormick® Perfect Pinch® Salt Free Southwest Sweet 'n Smoky Seasoning

For the Salmon:  mix juice, oil and 1 tablespoon each Seasoning and sugar in small bowl. 
Place salmon in large resealable plastic bag or glass dish. Add marinade; turn to coat well. Refrigerate 30 minutes or longer for extra flavor. 

Meanwhile, for the Salsa, mix all ingredients in medium bowl until well blended. Cover. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Mix remaining 1 tablespoon each Seasoning and sugar in small bowl. Remove salmon from marinade. Discard any remaining marinade. Rub salmon evenly with seasoning mixture.

Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Serve with Orange Salsa.

To Grill Salmon instead of bake: Marinate and season salmon as directed. Grill over medium-high heat 6 to 8 minutes per side or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Taco Spaghetti Pie

Haven't tried this one yet but I love Mexican - I love pasta - what could go wrong??

Taco Spaghetti Pie

nonstick cooking spray
1 lb. ground beef
kosher salt
Black pepper
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
2 c. crushed tomatoes
1 lb. Cooked spaghetti
24 oz. shredded Mexican cheese mix
1/2 c. Sour cream, for serving
1/4 c. chopped fresh cilantro
2 scallions, chopped

Begin cooking pasta to just barely al dente.
Brown ground beef.  Drain off fat.
Season with salt and pepper, cumin. chili powder. oregano.
Stir in tomatoes.
Spray baking dish with cooking spray.
Stir half of meat sauce into spaghetti and arrange in baking dish to form "crust".
Sprinkle half of cheese over crust.
Top with remainder of sauce and remaining cheese.
Bake in 350° oven for 10-15 minutes to melt cheese - watch so cheese doesn't begin to brown.
Remove from oven and top with rosettes of sour cream, sprinkled with cilantro and scallions.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Fresh Tomato and Ricotta Tart

This looks so yummy - perfect for a warm night!

Fresh Tomato and Ricotta Tart

from "O&O Eats" blog:

Ingredients:For the crust: (or buy a crust at the store!)
1 & 1/2 cups (188 grams) all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
6 tbsp unsalted butter, cubed, very cold
4 tbsp vegetable shortening, very cold
3 to 4 tbsp ice water, plus more as needed

4 oz (1/2 cup) fresh ricotta
4 oz (1/2 cup) soft goat cheese, such as chèvre
2 to 3 scallions, thinly sliced
1 & 1/2 lbs tomatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
olive oil to finish
basil for garnish

Make the dough by placing flour, salt, and sugar in a medium mixing bowl. Whisk to combine. Add the butter and shortening. Using a pastry blender, cut the fats into the flour until they are the size of small peas (the more visible pieces of fat the better!). Add ice water and mix lightly with a spoon or spatula until it starts coming together. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured counter and knead a few times with your hands then form it into a ball. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 1 hour and up to 1 day.

When ready to bake, turn the oven to 350 degrees F. On a well floured counter, roll the dough out until it can fit a 10 to 11 inch tart pan. Gently transfer dough to the pan and press it in. Trim off any excess then poke some small holes evenly along the bottom using a fork. Line the dough with a sheet of parchment paper then fill it with pie weights (or uncooked beans/rice). Transfer to the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Take the crust out of the oven, then remove the weights and parchment paper. Return the crust to the oven for another 15 to 20 minutes until the edges are a rich gold and the center is beginning to brown.

When the crust has cooled to room temperature, carefully remove it from the pan. Mix the ricotta, goat cheese, and scallions together until smooth. Spread the filling on the bottom of the crust. Layer the sliced tomatoes on top. Salt and pepper the tart to taste, then add a drizzle of olive oil. Garnish with fresh basil. Enjoy immediately.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Pizza Mac and Cheese

Need to try this - bringing together two of my favorites!!!

Pizza Mac and Cheese

1 375g box of macaroni (or other short pasta) -- 4-5 cups
2 cups chicken broth
2.5 cups milk
1½ tsp salt
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp oregano
3 cups cheese, divided
1½ cups pizza sauce
10-15 slices pepperoni

Preheat oven to 400 F.

In an oven-safe dutch oven or pot, bring pasta, broth, milk, salt, garlic and oregano to a boil and reduce to a simmer over medium heat. 

Cook and stir for 10-12 minutes until al dente. 

Stir in 1½ cups cheese.

Top with pizza sauce, remaining cheese and pepperoni and bake for 10 minutes until hot. Broil for 1-2 minutes until pepperoni starts to crisp up on the edges and cheese starts to brown.


I'm thinking mild cheddar IN the sauce and a cheddar/mozza/parm mix on top....

Atlantic Beach Pie

Atlantic Beach Pie  (North Carolina)

Makes 1 pie

For the crust:
1 1/2sleeves of saltine crackers (about 6 ounces or 60 crackers)
1/2cup softened unsalted butter
3tablespoons sugar

For the filling:
One14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
4egg yolks
1/2cup lemon or lime juice or a mix of the two
Fresh whipped cream, for garnish
Coarse sea salt, for garnish
Preheat oven to 350° F.

Crush the crackers finely. You can use a food processor or your hands. 

Add the sugar, then knead in the butter until the crumbs hold together like dough. 

Press into an 8-inch pie pan. Chill for 15 minutes, then bake for 18 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

While the crust is cooling, beat the egg yolks into the milk, then beat in the citrus juice. It is important to completely combine these ingredients. 

Pour into the shell and bake for 16 minutes until the filling has set. 

Chill THOROUGHLY.  The pie needs to be completely cold to be sliced. Serve with fresh whipped cream and a sprinkling of sea salt.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Summer Corn Chowder

Use up all that leftover corn on the cob!!

Summer Corn Chowder

(or winter.... corn chowder is always good!!  Perfect lunch when served with a fresh tomato sammie!!)

8 ears fresh sweet yellow corn, husked and silks removed and kernels cut from cob
3 Tbsp butter
5 slices bacon, cut into 1/4 to 1/2-inch pieces
1 medium yellow onion chopped (1 1/2 cups)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 clove garlic, minced
5 cups water
1 lb Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1 cup half and half
1 Tbsp honey
2 – 3 Tbsp chopped fresh chives
Shredded cheddar cheese, for serving (optional)


Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. 

Add the onion and bacon and cook until onion has softened and just starting to brown around edges, about 8 – 10 minutes.  (Don't let it burn - just carmelize the onions).

Drain out bacon grease, leaving about 2T in the pot.

Add in the flour and garlic and cook 1 1/2 minutes, stirring.

Whisk in in 5 cups water, added a cup at a time. 

Bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly, then stir in corn kernels and potatoes. 

Add in thyme and bay leaf and season with salt and pepper to taste. 

Bring back to a light boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes.

Remove bay leaf (always remove the bay leaf!!!  Sharp edges - we don't want to kill anyone!) 

Transfer half of the chowder to a blender and blend until smooth. 

Pour the mixture back into the pot then stir in half and half and honey. 

Sprinkle each serving with chives and optional cheddar.  You can also sprinkle a little extra crisp bacon pieces (don't use fake - use the real stuff).  I like to garnish with a purple chive flower if I have any in my herb garden.

Friendship Crown

Friendship Crown

This looks like a REALLY amazing appetizer to serve at your next gathering.  
I can't wait to try this with my crafting club!!!!

Michelle Mitchell THANK YOU!!!

puff pastry sheet (1)
3 tomatoes
1 zucchini
feta cheese
mozzarella balls
sliced olives

Slice 3 tomatoes and 1 zucchini

Unroll a sheet of puff pastry and place a small bowl in the center

Spread pesto in a ring on the pastry, leaving a small edge of pastry free

Arrange the tomatoes and zucchini on top of the pesto

Top with feta cheese, small balls of mozzarella and a sprinkling of oregano

Remove the bowl and divide the dough that was under the bowl into eighths

Roll over that free edge of the pastry on top of the veggies

Fold over those "eighths" on top of the ring

Brush with beaten egg wash

Place a black olive slice on each section of folded over pastry

Bake at 180C (350F) for 20 min

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Chinese Chicken Salad

I remember when this was about all we'd eat in the teachers' room for lunch - every day - variations on Chinese Chicken Salad.  Thought it was time to have another go at it!

Chinese Chicken Salad

For the chicken:2quarts water
1/2tablespoon sea salt
1star anise
1tablespoon whole black peppercorn
1head garlic, sliced in half
One 1-inch piece garlic, crushed with the side of a knife
A few sprigs cilantro
1scallion, cut into 3 to 4 pieces
2large chicken breasts (about 1 pound)

For the salad and dressing:1napa cabbage
1medium carrot, cut into matchstick-size slivers on a mandoline
1cup mung bean sprouts
1cucumber, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch moons
2scallions, both the white and green parts, cut thin on the bias
1/3cup matchstick-sized slivered radishes
4tablespoons toasted sesame oil
2tablespoons freshly-squeezed lime juice
1tablespoon dark soy sauce
1/2cup whole cilantro leaves
1/2cup whole mint leaves (optional)
1/2cup whole Thai basil leaves (optional)
1/4cup toasted sesame seeds
1/4cup crispy fried shallots (optional)

Add everything for the chicken EXCEPT the chicken to the water, add the salt and bring up to a boil. 

Drop the chicken breasts in, stir, and let just come back up to a simmer. 

Turn off the heat, cover, and let sit, covered in the pot at room temperature, for 20 minutes. 

After 20 minutes, pull the chicken out and set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, shred the napa cabbage  

Toss with the carrots, sprouts, cucumbers, scallions, and radishes. 

Whisk the dressing ingredients—sesame oil, lime juice, and dark soy sauce—together and pour over the vegetables.

Using your hands, shred the cooled chicken and add to the salad. 

When you are ready to serve it, add in the herb leaves and the sesame seeds and toss together. 

Serve garnished with the crispy fried shallots or Chinese crispy noodles

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Slow Cooker Pasta y Fagioli

I haven't tried this one yet - but it looks good.  Love pasta "fazhool" - always on the lookout for recipes to make it - I must have been Italian in a previous life!!

Slow Cooker Pasta y Fagioli

2 lbs. of ground beef
1 onion, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
4 stalks of celery, chopped
2 (28 ounce) cans diced tomato’s, undrained
1 (16 ounce) can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 (16 ounce) can white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
3 (10 ounce) cans of beef stock
3 tsp. oregano
2 tsp. pepper
5 tsp. parsley
1 tsp. tabasco sauce (optional)
1 (20 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
8 ounces of pasta (we use elbow pasta …but you can use whatever pasta you care to use)

Grated/shredded parm

Brown the beef and drain the fat……then put into crock pot with all other ingredients except the pasta. Cook on low for 7-8 hours or on High for 4-5 hours. Add the pasta 30 minutes before eating.

If you're going to have leftovers (like me - single person - always leftovers!!!) DON'T put the pasta in the soup - it will continue to soften in the frig and be mushy and disgusting the next day.  Cook it separately.  Toss with a tiny amount of EVOO to keep it from sticking and store it separately.  I serve mine by putting pasta in the soup bowl, topping with the soup, then stir around to let the soup coat the pasta.  And I HAVE to top it with some cheese.  

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Classic Beef Bourguignon

This is very similar to my mom's recipe, but not as labor intensive!!  One trick she taught me was to cover my Dutch oven with wax paper before putting the lid on and popping it into the oven.  The wax paper creates a "seal" that keeps all those lovely juices in the oven - almost like a pressure cooker without the pressure.   Be super-careful, though,  removing the pan from the over and the lid from the pan - there is a build-up of above-boiling liquid under that wax paper.  Wear long mitts and keep your face away from the pan.  If you tear a little piece away from the pan - there is a live steam rush.  I take a long (LONG!) knife and pierce the paper in a few places after I've carefully removed the lid and then WAIT to peel off the paper from the hot pan. 

You can thicken the gravy by whisking in a roux of flour cooked in butter or a slurry paste of flour and water, if necessary, and simmering for a few minutes on top of the stove.

Classic Beef Bourguignon


3 pounds stew beef, cubed
1 pound farfalle bow-tie pasta
2-3 cups beef stock
3 cups red wine (cabernet)
5 carrots, chopped
4 slices bacon, cut into strips
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 onions, finely chopped
2 bay leaves
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon rosemary
1/2 teaspoon cloves
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 450 F.
Take your cubed beef and pat them dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture.
Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat and render bacon stripsuntil browned and crispy. Remove to a bowl, leaving bacon fat in the pot.
Turn heat up to medium-high and, in batches, brown cubed beef, adding more olive oil if necessary. Once browned, transfer to bowl with baconand set aside.
Add onions and carrots, seasoned with salt and pepper, and sauté until softened and tender. 6-8 minutes.
Return beef (and bacon, optional)to the vegetables and sprinkle in flour. Toss to coat everything and transfer Dutch oven to the oven for 4 minutes, uncovered.
Toss everything again and roast for another 4 minutes.
Stir tomato paste into beef and veggies and cook for 3-5 minutes.
Pour in liquids until meat is just submerged, then add garlic, bay leaves, thyme, rosemary and cloves, and let simmer.
Cover and place in oven for 3 hours. Check at 2 hours to see how much liquid is left, adding more stock if meat is no longer covered.
Note: sauce should be reduced and thickened, and meat should be falling apart.
Once meat is tender, transfer Dutch oven back to stove and keep on low heat until ready to serve.
Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil and cook farfalle according to packaging directions, or until al dente.
Serve beef bourguignon hot, on top of pasta, pouring extra sauce over as desired.

Recipe adapted from I Love Pasta

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Tuna / Bean Salad

It is TOO hot to cook!!!!!! To the pantry!!!

Tuna / Bean Salad 

(for 4)

One 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
One 15-ounce can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
6 ounces green beans, trimmed and sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
12 sweet piquante peppers, such as Peppadews, chopped, plus 2 tablespoons brine
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup tahini
1 large head red leaf lettuce, chopped (about 12 ounces)
Two 5-ounce cans white albacore tuna in oil, drained
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

Stir together the chickpeas, kidney beans, green beans, onions, peppadews, brine, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and the olive oil in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper .

Whisk together the yogurt and tahini until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

Toss the lettuce with the remaining 1 tablespoon lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Divide the lettuce among 4 plates, top with the bean mixture and then the tuna. Drizzle with the yogurt dressing and sprinkle with the smoked paprika. Toss together just before eating.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Tomato Orecchiette with Brie and Basil

Fast, fast, fast! The heat from the pasta melts the cheese. The fresh basil adds the zip. I'm serving this with some quick grilled shrimp, drizzled with Meyer lemon oil and a super-fast pea salad.

Tomato Orecchiette with Brie and Basil

Grilled Shrimp

Cold Pea Salad

12 ounces orecchiette pasta
2 large tomatoes, chopped
4 ounces brie cheese, sliced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, sliced

Shrimp - 6 med or 3-4 lg/ per person
Meyer Lemon oil

Pea Salad:
1/2 pound frozen petite peas
3 oz smokehouse almonds, chopped fine
1/2 onion chopped
1/2 c mayonnaise

Cook pasta according to package directions.
Drain and return to pot. 
Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine.

Heat grill.
Peel and clean shrimp - leave the tails on
Toss shrimp with oil, S and P
Grill 5-6 min per side or until shrimp turns pink

Rinse peas in colander under cold water until thawed
Drain and transfer to a large bowl.
Add almonds and onions; mix well. 
Fold mayonnaise and black pepper into pea mixture until evenly coated. 
Cover and refrigerate until serving.

Blue Penguin figured out this week's puzzle.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Peanut Butter Pie

I made this for my uncle many times - he was a peanutbutteraholic.  If he didn't have at least ten large canisters of peanut butter in the house, he'd begin to panic!!! (Just kidding - but I never did see a house with so much peanut butter!)  This is so easy to make it's ridiculous!

Hot Fudge Peanut Butter Pie


1 chocolate graham cracker crust
1 cup peanut butter
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, room temperature
1 tub (12 ounces) Cool Whip, divided
1 jar (11.75 ounces) hot fudge topping, divided
½ cup sugar

chopped peanuts OR Reese's peanut butter cup MINIS OR small Reeese cups, quartered OR Reese's pieces


In a large bowl, beat peanut butter, cream cheese, and sugar until creamy. Fold in the Cool Whip. Spoon mixture into crust and smooth to edges.

Heat the hot fudge according to package directions. Spread on top of peanut butter layer. Refrigerate pie until serving time.

Decorate the top the pie with a sprinkling of peanuts or some minis or the quartered Reeses or the Reese's pieces across the top

Monday, May 30, 2016

One Pan Fajita Chicken

One Pan Fajita Chicken

3-4 chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
1 large onion, sliced
1 red pepper, sliced
1 oz. or 6 tsp of fajita seasoning mix

Fajita Seasoning Mix:
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp white sugar
½ tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp cumin

Mix together the One Pan Baked Fajitaseasoning mix ingredients.
Grease 9 x 13 pan
Place onions and red pepper in pan.
Top with sliced chicken.
Sprinkle with fajita seasoning mix
Drizzle with oil and toss to coat.
Bake at 400 degrees F. for 30-40 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

Serve on tortillas

One Pan Lemon Garlic Pasta

One Pan Lemon Garlic Pasta

1 pound (16 oz. box) Linguine, uncooked
¼ cup butter, divided
1 tablespoon minced garlic or 4 cloves, finely chopped
Juice and zest from 1 lemon
Salt & Pepper
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh herbs like parsley or basil
1 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese
4 cups water

Heat 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat and cook garlic for 30 seconds to a minute, just until fragrant
Add water, linguine, remaining butter, lemon juice and zest and salt and pepper to the skillet.
Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and reduce to medium.
Continue to cook pasta until nearly all water is evaporated, stirring often to keep pasta from sticking, about 8-9 minutes. (If pasta needs more cooking time, add a little more hot water).
Remove from heat and stir in about ¾ cup cup shredded Parmesan Cheese and fresh herbs.
Divide into bowls and garnish with remaining Parmesan, freshly cracked black pepper and a quick squeeze of lemon juice (option).

I know I'll be doing this with grilled shrimp/prawns.

One Pan Chicken Parmesan and Roasted Zucchini

One Pan Chicken Parmesan and Roasted Zucchini

4 (6 oz) boneless skinless chicken breast halves
3/4 cup Italian seasoned Panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
2/3 cup marinara sauce (from a jar of store bought)
2/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 1/4 lbs zucchini chopped in half through the length then sliced into 1/2-inch thick pieces
1/2 tsp garlic powder
Chopped fresh basil, for serving (optional)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Spray a rimmed cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
Pour Panko bread crumbs and parmesan into a gallon size resealable bag.
Season with salt and pepper if desired.
Shake bag then drizzle 1 Tbsp olive oil over bread crumb mixture.
Seal bag and shake while pressing against mixture to evenly moisten crumbs.
In a shallow dish whisk egg until well blended.
Working with one chicken breast at a time, dredge chicken in egg then immediately transfer to bread crumb mixture and press both sides in crumbs to adhere well.
Transfer to middle of baking dish then repeat with remaining chicken breasts.
Bake chicken in oven 15 minutes.
During last few minutes of chicken baking, place zucchini in a gallon size resealable bag, pour in olive oil and add garlic powder. Season wtih salt and pepper to taste. Seal bag and shake to evenly coat.
Remove chicken from oven, rotate chicken to opposite side.
Add zucchini around chicken in an even layer.
Return to oven and bake 10 minutes longer or until chicken registers 165 degrees in center on an instant read thermometer (mine were 170 after the 10 minutes so unless your chicken breasts are super thick you shouldn't need much more time).
Remove from oven and spread marinara sauce down middle of chicken breasts, sprinkle with mozzarella.
Move oven rack near broiler element and heat oven to broil.
Broil until cheese has melted about 1 - 2 minutes (keep a close eye on it so cheese doesn't burn).
Sprinkle with basil and serve immediately.

20 Minute One Pan Gnocchi with Sausage and Spinach

20 Minute One Pan Gnocchi with Sausage and Spinach

2 TB olive oil
1 onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb Italian sausage (bulk, no casings)
1 (16 oz) package dry potato gnocchi (from dry pasta aisle)
1 (14.5 oz) can Italian flavored diced tomatoes with juices (do not drain)
¼ cup low sodium chicken broth
4 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
½ cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese

In a large nonstick skillet, add oil and heat over medium high until hot.
Add onion and garlic and stir/cook until fragrant, 30 seconds.
Add sausage; stir and break it up into pieces, until nicely browned. Don't drain.
Add uncooked gnocchi. Stir 1 min, gently breaking up any clumps.
Stir in tomatoes with juices and chicken broth.
Cover and cook on medium heat, 5 min, or just until gnocchi is fluffy and cooked through.
Turn off heat.
Add spinach and pepper. Stir until spinach leaves are wilted.
Sprinkle with cheeses and cover for 3-5 minutes or until cheese is melty.

One Pot Chili Pasta

One Pot Chili Pasta

1 pound Ground Beef
1 medium Onion, chopped
3 cloves Garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
2 cups Chicken Broth
2 cups Pasta Sauce
1 can Diced Tomatoes with Mild Green Chilis
1 can Chili Beans (do not drain)
1 1/2 cups Elbow Macaroni
1 teaspoon Chili Powder
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 cup Cheddar Cheese, shredded
Salt & Pepper to taste
Parsley to garnish

In a large saucepan (with lid) heat up the olive oil and add the ground beef, onion until the meat is browned and onion is translucent. Add the garlic and cook one minute more.
Add salt & pepper to taste
Stir in chicken broth, pasta sauce, diced tomatoes with mild green chilis, chili beans, chili powder and cumin
Bring to a boil and stir in pasta.
Lower the heat, cover and simmer until the pasta is cooked (about 13-14 minutes)
Remove from heat and sprinkle the cheddar cheese evenly on top.
Add the parsley and serve

One Pan Cilantro-Lime Chicken and Rice with Black Beans

One Pan Cilantro-Lime Chicken and Rice with Black Beans

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced into 1-inch cubes
1 Tbsp canola oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 green onions, chopped (keep lighter and darker portions separate)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chilies
2 tsp lime zest
3 Tbsp lime juice
1 (14.5 oz) can black beans, rinsed and well drained
2 cups minute white rice (don't use regular rice!)
1/3 cup chopped cilantro

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
Once hot add chicken, season with salt and pepper, and saute until cooked through, about 6 minutes, adding in lighter portions of the green onions and garlic at last 1 minute of cooking.
Stir in broth, green onion greens, green chilies, lime zest, lime juice, black beans and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Bring mixture to a boil, add rice, fully immerse rice in broth, and allow to boil 20 seconds, then remove from heat and immediately cover with a lid. Let rest 5 - 6 minutes.

If needed, return pan to medium heat and cook and toss 1 minute to allow rice to absorb excess moisture. Remove from heat, toss in cilantro and let rest uncovered 3 minutes.

One Pan Sour Cream Chicken Enchilada Skillet

One Pan Sour Cream Chicken Enchilada Skillet

3 tbsp butter
3 tbsp all purpose flour
2 C chicken broth
½ tsp kosher salt
⅛ tsp chipotle chili powder (optional)
¼ tsp oregano
1 (4oz) can chopped green chiles
1 (4oz) can chopped black olives
3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 C sour cream
12 corn tortillas, cut into bite-sized pieces
1-2 C colby-jack cheese, grated

In a large skillet, heat butter over medium heat until melted.
Stir in flour, cook for 1 minute and whisk in chicken broth.
Continue stirring until smooth and thickened-- about 2-3 minutes.
Stir chipotle chili powder, salt, oregano, green chiles and black olives into the sauce and place chicken breasts into pan.
Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low, cover and cook about 15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
Remove chicken from pan, leaving the heat on low, and place chicken on a plate to shred into bite-sized pieces.
Stir sour cream into the sauce and return chicken to the pan along with the tortillas.
Stir until combined and top with grated cheese.
Cover pan and cook for 5-8 minutes until bubbly and the cheese is melted.

One Pan Spanish Chicken

One Pan Spanish Chicken

8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 (12.8-ounce) package smoked andouille chicken sausage, thinly sliced
16 ounces baby Dutch yellow potatoes, halved
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
Zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray.
Season chicken with oregano, paprika, salt and pepper, to taste; set aside.
Place sausage and potatoes in a single layer onto the prepared baking sheet. Stir in olive oil, garlic and lemon zest; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Top with chicken in a single layer.
Place into oven and roast until the chicken is completely cooked through, reaching an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, about 25-30 minutes.
Then broil for 2-3 minutes, or until caramelized and slightly charred.

Serve immediately, garnished with cilantro, if desired.

One Pan Chicken, Apple, Sweet Potato, and Brussels Sprouts Skillet

One Pan Chicken, Apple, Sweet Potato, and Brussels Sprouts Skillet

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped
3 cups Brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered (about 3/4 pound)
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes (about 8 ounces)
1 medium onion, chopped
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into 3/4 inch cubes
4 cloves garlic, minced (about 2 teaspoons)
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken stock, divided

Heat the olive oil in a large, nonstick or cast iron skillet over medium high, until hot and shimmering. Add the chicken, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and black pepper
Cook until lightly browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer to plate lined with paper towels.
Reduce skillet heat to medium low.
Add the chopped bacon and cook until crisp and brown and the fat has rendered, about 4 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate
Discard all but 1 1/2 tablespoons bacon fat from the pan.
Increase skillet heat back to medium high.
Add Brussels sprouts, sweet potato, onion, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.
Cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender and the onions are beginning to look translucent, about 8 minutes.
Stir in the apples, garlic, thyme, and cinnamon.
Cook 30 seconds, then pour in 1/2 cup of the broth.
Bring to a boil and cook until evaporated, about 2 minutes.
Add the reserved chicken and remaining 1/2 cup broth.
Cook until heated through, about 2 minutes.
Stir in reserved bacon and serve warm.