Unbought Delicacies

Mexican Lasagna
September 3, 2011, 3:58 pm
Filed under: Dinner

From Janell, so good.

1 lb ground beef or turkey
1-2 Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 ½ tsp. cumin
1-1 ½ C salsa
1 Can black beans, drained, rinsed
1 Can corn, drained, rinsed
1 medium red onion, diced
1 package tortillas (white, wheat or flavored, ie. Cheddar jalapeno), quartered
Cheese of your choice (cheddar, monterey jack, pepper jack, or any combo), grated
**Optional: diced green onions for garnish**
Spray the bottom of a 9X13” dish. Line tortillas up to cover the bottom. Brown meat in a skillet with red onions. Add salsa, chili powder, garlic powder , cumin, black beans and corn to skillet.Layer bean/meat mixture on top of tortillas. Sprinkle a layer of cheese on top of that. Repeat: tortilla layer, bean/meat layer, cheese.
Bake in 400*F oven for 15-18 min. Garnish with green onions if desired.


Soaked Oat Granola Bars
August 4, 2011, 11:08 pm
Filed under: Snacks

Original recipe and instructions/variations here:

4 ½ c. soaked and dried oats
½ or ¾ c.butter
½ c. whole wheat flour
2/3 or 1 c. honey
1 c chopped.crispy walnuts
2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup add-ins: mini chocolate chips, dried fruit, sunflower seeds, coconut, etc

In a small saucepan, melt butter, honey and vanilla over medium low heat. Once butter is melted and bubbly, cook and stir for 5 minutes, until the frothy bubbles go away and the mixture looks more like soft crack candy. The bubbles will be larger and more controlled. This is important!

In a separate bowl, stir together the dry ingredients. Mix the liquid with the oats. Incorporate add-ins at this point (mini-chocolate chips melt, so you may want to cool first).

Choose Your Own Ending

Unbaked (Use the 2/3 cup honey and ¾ cup butter) Line a container of any kind with waxed paper (I’ve used glass dishes and plastic storage containers.) Press bar mixture in, well, with waxed paper. Allow to harden up (the refrigerator speeds this up, but isn’t necessary) and then cut into bars.

Baked (Use 1 cup honey and ½ c. butter, or use less honey but have more crumbly results. Add 1 tsp. baking soda and mix in thoroughly.) Press mixture hard into a greased 9”x13” pan; use wax paper on your fingers to apply pressure. Bake at 325 degrees F for 10 minutes. Allow to sit in pan until completely cool and then cut into bars. Taste difference? Believe it or not, 10 minutes in the oven does something considerable. The baked bars have a mouthfeel related to a cookie (but not quite) and are less sweet. Unbaked bars are more like a sticky Quaker chewy granola bar, but with the 1 cup honey are much too sweet (and more expensive anyway). You could try half and half in 8”x8” pans to see which you prefer!

Eggplant Parmesan
July 16, 2011, 6:42 pm
Filed under: Dinner, Vegetarian

Made eggplant parmesan for the first time in my life. Not too bad. Slightly modified version of this recipe:

1 eggplant, peeled and thinly sliced 
1 egg, beaten
2 cups Italian seasoned bread crumbs
2.5 cups spaghetti sauce, divided
8 ounce package mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/4 teaspoon dried basil

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Dip eggplant slices in egg, then in bread crumbs. Place in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 5 minutes on each side.
  3. In a 9×13 inch baking dish spread spaghetti sauce to cover the bottom. Place a layer of eggplant slices in the sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. Repeat with remaining ingredients, ending with the cheeses. Sprinkle basil on top.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes, or until golden brown.

Chicken Rice Casserole
July 3, 2011, 8:57 pm
Filed under: Chicken, Dinner

Going to give this a try with some leftover chicken.

  • 6 Tbsp butter, divided
  • 1/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1-1/2 cups chicken stock (homemade is best)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2-1/2 cups cooked chopped chicken
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1/3 cup diced red or green pepper
  1. Prepare your rice according to the package.
  2. When you’re ready to assemble the casserole, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Melt 4 Tbsp butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Then add the flour, salt and pepper, and stir until it’s nice and bubbly.
  4. Stir in the chicken stock and milk and keep stirring as it comes to a boil. Boil for one minute before removing it from the heat.
  5. Stir in the chopped chicken, the rice, and the diced pepper.
  6. Add the remaining 2 Tbsp butter, stir that in, and spread it into a buttered casserole dish.
  7. Bake for about 40 minutes, uncovered, until it’s bubbly and beginning to brown on top.
  8. Serve with a veggie or a salad, and you’ve got dinner!

Three-Bean Salad with Quinoa
May 26, 2011, 2:00 pm
Filed under: Appetizer/Sides

Whole Foods recipe here.

1 cup uncooked quinoa
Salt and ground black pepper
1/2 pound green beans, trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces, cooked and rinsed in cold water
1 1/2 cups frozen Shelled Edamame, thawed
1/2 cup chopped roasted red peppers
1 (15-ounce) can Kidney Beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup Italian Dressing
1 teaspoon dried tarragon

Rinse quinoa under cold running water and drain. Bring 1 3/4 cups water to a boil in a small pot. Stir quinoa and a pinch of salt into water. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until tender and liquid is absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Uncover and let cool. Put cooled quinoa, green beans, edamame, peppers, kidney beans, dressing, tarragon, salt and pepper into a large bowl and toss well. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Asparagus Frittata
May 6, 2011, 2:17 pm
Filed under: Breakfast

Going to give this a try this week with our leftover asparagus. Her directions:

– 2 Tablespoons butter
– 1 small onion, thinly sliced
– sea salt to taste
– 1 pound (or so) fresh asparagus, tough ends snapped off, cut diagonally into 1-inch lengths
– 6 pastured eggs, lightly beaten
– 1 cup shredded Gruyere or Swiss cheese

1. Melt butter over medium-low heat in a 10-inch cast iron (or ovenproof) frying pan. Be careful not to let it brown. Add the onions and salt and cook slowly until onions are soft. Stir it around to make sure they cook evenly, this takes 3-5 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, slice asparagus. Then add asparagus to the pan and cook, covered, until the asparagus are barely tender, maybe 5 minutes or so.

3. While that’s getting happy, crack 6 eggs into a glass pitcher or bowl. And shred the cheese.

4. Whisk eggs and about 3/4 of the cheese together and pour into the onion/asparagus mixture. Cook until almost set, but still runny in the middle.

5. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. And pop it into the oven on broil for 2 or 3 minutes.

Easy Mexican Chicken
May 4, 2011, 12:46 am
Filed under: Chicken, Dinner, Mexican

Made this for a church potluck. It was super easy and tastier than I would have thought. I cut up my chicken into bite sizes because of the potluck.

– 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
– 1 cup salsa (I used Newman’s Own medium)
– 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese (I used mostly pepper jack with some cheddar and used more than they call for)
– 1 clove garlic, minced
– 1 pinch salt
– 1 pinch ground black pepper
– 1 pinch ground cumin (I just sprinkled it lightly over all of the chicken)
– I also added chili powder in the same way as the cumin

 Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  1. Heat a greased skillet to medium. Rub chicken pieces with garlic, salt, pepper and cumin to taste and add to hot skillet. Cook until brown on both sides and no longer pink (10 to 15 minutes).
  2. Transfer meat to 9 x 13 inch baking dish or casserole dish, top with salsa and cheese and bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for 15 to 20 minutes (until cheese is bubbly and starts to brown.) Serve over rice or buttered noodles.