Friday, October 13, 2006

Real Potato Hash!

I decided to use real potatoes in the not because I dislike sweet potatoes but because I thought these little yellow potatoes were perfect! This was very simple, relatively quick, and so comforting to eat!

Hash P2-3

8 tiny yellow potatoes, scrubbed and chopped
1 quart home-canned tomatoes with their juice
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 cup cooked soybeans
1 1/2 cups cooked ground beef
1 TBSP beef boullion granules
1 TBSP chopped garlic
3/4 cup water
1/2 TBSP olive oil
1 small onion, chopped

Heat a non-stick pan over medium-high heat, add the oil and potatoes. Cover and cook about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the onions and cook another 5 minutes, adding some of the water as neccessary. Sprinkle with beef granules and add the beans and tomatoes with more water if needed. Cook covered for about 10 minutes until potatoes are cooked. Toss in the peas and garlic, and cook uncovered for 3-5 minutes to heat thru and slightly cook the garlic (I like the bite of raw garlic!).

That's it! Simple and delicious!

Sunday, October 08, 2006


Well this is the latest 5:4 challenge. This time around it was much easier for me than the last one that was extremely hard, in my opinion! We were to create a dish with: Peas, tomatoes, beef of our choice, potatoes of our choice and legumes.
Even though this has beans and sweet potatoes in it my daughter ACTUALLY ATE IT!!!! She is extremely anti beans and has become a bit of a veggie picky eater. She asked what I was making as it smelled good and when I told her she made a face of exasperation and said "Yuck beans, Never mind!" After I dished up my hubbies and my plate I suggested she at least give it a taste test. she took a bite and walked into the kitchen to look for more. she came out and asked were it was and I told her I'd only fixed one for her dad and i as she didn't want any. she batted her eyes at me and asked if I'd go ahead and make one for her too. Her friend came over in the meantime and i guess asked what I was making (Cathy always loves to eat what I make, bless her little heart!) and so I fixed one for her too. both enjoyed it and ate all of it!

Beef & Veggie Chimichanga (p2)
By Nau-Dee
Roast Beef (cooked however you like)
frozen peas
1 can Rotel tomatoes with green chilies (what ever temperature you prefer)
1 can black beans
1 sweet potato, diced
Cheddar cheese, shredded
ww tortillas
cumin to taste
salt to taste
Olive oil

Cook up the Roast Beef however you prefer. I fixed up the roast early this week by cooking it in a pkg of Lipton's Onion soup mix (dry) with extra sliced raw onions and water to cover. I boiled this down til the meat was extremely tender (add more water if needed) I cooked this on top of the stove, in my dutch oven, and with the lid particularly covering.

Grate outer skin of one sweet potato, slice and dice it up. Fry this up til tender in a skillet with some olive oil and salt. When this is finished drain if needed and set aside. In the same skillet toss in pea's, tomatoes, beans, cumin, salt and shredded beef. Add a little water if needed but cook til the peas are tender and cooked. Season more if needed. Add the sweet potatoes and mix well.

Place a little of this mixture in a whole wheat tortilla, top with some shredded cheese and wrap up burrito style. In a heated skillet with some oil place this wrapped tortilla, wrapped side down, in the heated oil. when golden brown roll over and cook the other side. place on paper towels and let drain well and serve.

NOTE: A serving suggestion would be: to place on a bed of shredded lettuce, top with some more cheese, sour cream, salsa and chopped cilantro.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

tomato beef stew

tomato beef stew

2 c. frozen or fresh vegetables
3 tomatoes, chopped
2 c. stewing beef 1 potato, cut in chunks
1/3 c. dry legumes 1 c. water or broth
2/3 c. V8 juice or tomato juice
2 bay leafs
garlic powder
Italian seasoning
fresh ground pepper, salt

put all ingredients in crockpot and cook on high for 6 hours (approximately) until beans are soft

wrapped out of wrap ups!

time constraints haven't allowed me to wrap - up... but you see the recipes... so make them!

A note from Nau-Dee:
Ha ha, love the wrap up on this one....well put Laurie!! I just wanted to add that the 5:4 ingredients this time around was: Shrimp, Pineapple, Apple, Bread and Snow Pea's.

mini-shrimp sandwiches

mini-shrimp sandwiches

2 slices of gluten-free bread (i used my flax loaf)
6 shrimp, thawed and shelled
1/2 an apple (i used a mac), cut in slices
1/2 c. snowpeasabout
1/4 c. pineapple juice
sesame oilcilantro

in a saucepan, heat oil. saute snowpeas with oil and cilantro, then add about half of the pineapple juce. meanwhile, baste bread with a bit of pineapple/oil mixture, and toast. when snowpeas are a little softer, quickly saute (to warm) the shrimp and apple chunks in the same mixture, adding more juice and cilantro. cut each slice of bread into six pieces. thread pattern onto toothpick: bread, snowpeas, shrimp, apple, bread.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Sweet Shrimp N Pasta

This five four, in my opinion, has been the hardest one yet. At first my thought was a salad. I planned and tried grilling the fruit (apples don't grill very well by the way!) as well as the shrimp and bread. I chose sour dough bread and was going to grill to toast it and then use it as croutons. The grilled pineapple rings and shrimp were going to be placed on a bed of lettuce along with the snow peas and then drizzled with Kraft raspberry vinaigrette for dressing. My shrimp was already precooked and rather tiny so grilling it even the slightest bit was still too much for it. The pineapple and bread turned out great but the apples and shrimp didn't. So I chopped up some apples and pecans and tossed those on top of the salad. My hubby liked it but I was just not wild about it. In theory it was good but I think a lot of it was the fact that the shrimp was over done and dry (even thought I marinated it in the dressing and pineapple juice). I found out a few things by making this dish...1) apples don't grill well at all!, 2) I really don't care for snow peas (they have a tart after taste and 3) I really don't like raspberry dressing. So here I am with what I'm still convinced is a good idea, with some tweaking of course, and yet I cant bring myself to try it again due to how I dislike the flavors of some important ingredients......... So, I tried my second idea and it worked out much much better!

Sweet Shrimp N Pasta P2 - 3
by Nau- Dee
(I really didn't measure so I'm gonna do my best at guesstimating it for you now)
1 to 1 1/2 c shrimp (or enough for 2 people)
! bag of frozen snow peas
3 to 4 slices whole wheat bread crumbs
small can pineapple rings, sliced into chunks with juice divided and reserved
1/2 to 1 c sugar free applesauce
Old Bay Seasoning
Olive oil
whole wheat penne pasta, cooked al dente
1/3 to 1/2 c fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • De-shell the shrimp, rinse,drain well and set aside.
  • In a food processor make bread crumbs, pulsating til you get a fine crumble texture (I used some I had on hand). Place crumbs on a plate and add some Old Bay seasoning (a few dashes) and mix well.
  • In a small bowl add some applesauce and pineapple juice. you want a thick mixture but not as thick as the applesauce on its own. I think I ended up using 2 : 1 of apple sauce to pineapple juice (give or take). Season this mixture with Old Bay seasoning. I didn't measure (sorry) but i think it was 1 to 2 tsp...I added to taste.
  • In a skillet heat up a 1 TAB Olive oil (you really don't want much oil if you are using a nonstick skillet).Dip the shrimp into the apple pineapple mixture and coat with bread crumbs. Fry shrimp til golden brown and allow to drain on a paper towel as you finish the rest.
  • Place snow peas in a microwavable dish with 2 TAB water and microwave 2 mins. Break up any clumps and microwave another 1 min.
  • Boil water for pasta. when its hot add some salt and a little olive oil. When pasta is cooked, drain and place in bowl. Add the snow peas, salt to taste and a drizzle or two of olive oil.
  • In the same skillet as the shrimp was cooked (do not clean or wipe out!) Add a drizzle of olive oil if needed and add the pineapple chunks, remaining juice, a dash of salt, some more old bays seasoning - 2 to 3 dashes and a handful of bread crumbs. Saute this til its thickened and heated through.
To assemble: place some pasta and snow peas on a serving plate. Top with the pasta with the pineapple breadcrumb saute, then the shrimp and then garnish with basil and ENJOY!

Note: even with this new dish i was not wild about the snow peas...i think I just don't care for them. So when I make this again I think instead of them I'll saute up some sliced bell pepper. It will still give the dish a great color and look nice with the penne pasta as well as go nicely with the shrimp and pineapple.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Gretchen's 5:4 Take 8- Thai Night!

This one was different. The breadcrumbs threw me a bit, but added a nice crunch as a garnish. I'm anxious to see what my two cohorts created!

Thai Pineapple Shrimp with Bean Threads P2

1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 cup frozen pineapple chunks
1 tsp oil
½ can lite coconut milk
½ tsp basil
1 tsp salt
½ a package of bean thread noodles
½ cup toasted WW breadcrumbs

For the bean threads- Heat a saucepan of water until boiling, remove from heat. Place the nests of noodles in the water, and let them soak for 10 minutes. Drain, and toss with oil if desired. (I just placed them on the plate right out of the water)
In a large sauté pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat until very hot. Add the pineapple chunks and sauté until nicely browned (about 10 minutes), stirring occasionally. Add the coconut milk, basil, and salt, and bring to a boil. Toss in the shrimp, and “poach” them in the milk. The milk will thicken and reduce creating a creamy sauce for the shrimp. Cook about 5 minutes or until the shrimp is all pink.
Spoon the shrimp, pineapple, and sauce over the noodles. Top with the toasted breadcrumbs for crunch!

Apple Snow Peas P2

2 cups snow peas, trimmed
8 oz apple juice (no sugar added)

In a sauté pan, heat the apple juice over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and reduce the juice to a scant tablespoon (this takes about 5-7 minutes, watch it carefully!). Throw in the peas, and toss to coat. Cook over medium heat about 3 minutes, just to barely soften the peas. Serve!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

grilled chicken soup with dumplings

grilled chicken soup with dumplings

2 chicken breasts, cut in slices
about 3 cups total of cauliflower, broccoli, green beans (or any combination of veggies), cut in bite sizes pieces
lots of fresh flat-leaf parsley
salt, fresh ground pepper
enough vegetable broth for soup

2/3 c. flour (I used Bob's Red Mill All-Purpose)
about 1/4 tsp. xanthan gum
1 egg or enough whites for 1 egg
parsley, finely chopped
salt, fresh ground pepper
water (depending what flour you use, the amount will vary)

salt and pepper chicken, and grill. combine broth, veggies and chicken in a pot. this can be done before hand.
about 20 minutes before you're ready to eat, bring soup to a boil.
while waiting it to boil, prepare dumplings.
whisk together egg and herbs/spices. mix xanthan gum and flour, then add; adding water to create a dough consistency.

using a spoon, scoop small balls of dough, and place in boiling water. boil for about 8 minutes (all dumplings should be at the top of the pot.

*note: i used a pot that was a little small, so I scooped out the veggies/chicken and did the dumplings in the broth, then added them back in once the dumplings were created.

Chicken Fried "Rice" and Sesame Green Beans

This one was very hard! Every dish I came up with seemed so "main-stream" and boring. That is, until THIS one! Even the picky child liked it! FYI- just like regular fried rice, this tastes better the next day!

Chicken Fried "Rice" P1

1 large head cauliflower, cored
1 pound broccoli florets
2 pounds chicken thighs, boneless and skinless, cut into small cubes
2 eggs, beaten with 3 TBSP water
2 TBSP mushroom-flavored soy sauce
2 TBSP oyster sauce
3 TBSP oil
Using a large-holed grater, shred the cauliflower. Set this aside.
Heat a large wok over high heat. Swirl in 1 tbsp oil. Add half the chicken, stir-frying until it is browned and cooked thru. Remove it and finish with remaining chicken. Then quickly stirfry the broccoli for a few minutes to barely cook it. Remove and wipe the wok clean.
Reheat the wok and add 1 tbsp oil. Cook eggs stirring occasionally until done, remove. Wipe the wok clean.
Heat it again and add another tbsp oil. Cook the cauliflower 5 minutes until it begins to soften. Then stir in the oyster sauce, chicken, and soy sauce. Toss together. Top with the broccoli and serve.

Sesame Green Beans P1

1 pound frozen or fresh green beans
2 TBSP mushroom-flavored soy sauce
1 TBSp oil
1 TBSP sesame seeds
Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a saute pan. Add beans and saute covered 5-7 minutes or until desired doneness. Stir in soy sauce, let caramelize. Remove to platter and top with sesame seeds.

Stir Fried Oriental Scramble Brunch

Well I really got a challenge with this one! I could only come up with one dish idea, which was a Pot pie. I finally made it and did two variations of it (both on my blog) but afterwords I came up with more ideas. This is one of them and really the better choice. I've been into eating brunch lately and usually its more on the breakfast side so I wanted something that was a bit more of a blend. With the eggs in this dish as well as the sweet oriental flavor I think I got it. My daughter even enjoyed it and has asked me to make more. This is pretty impressive as she usually snubs her nose at most Sb items I make these days as she doesn't like beans, and she doesn't like many of the veggies or complicated flavors.
Stir Fried Oriental Scramble Brunch P1
by Nau-Dee

16 oz bags of frozen broccoli, cauliflower and french cut green beans
3 to 4 large chicken breasts, (skinless, boneless and diced)
4 to 5 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup soy sauce
1 TAB oyster sauce
2 pkt splenda

Thaw the bags of veggies in the microwave for a few moments and drain off excess water (mine was not completely thawed but mostly). Dice up chicken and heat a Tab spoon of oil in a Large skillet.

When the skillet and oil are hot add broccoli, cauliflower and the green beans separately as their cooking times will vary. Stir fry (adding more oil as needed) each group of veggies til tender yet still having its crisp texture (basically don't over cook it to mush). When the veggies are all done do the same with the diced chicken. While the chicken is cooking blend the soy and oyster sauce with the splenda and set aside. When the chicken is all finished cooking add all the veggies back into the skillet and pour in the sauce and mix. Cook this a few mins to warm everything back up and get the sauce well covering the meat and veggies. In the same dish as the sauce was mixed in add 4 to 5 eggs and blend. Push the meat and veggies over to one side of the skillet and slowly pour in the eggs. Let them scramble up and then blend them into the meat and veggie mixture - Then serve This is a lightly sweet oriental brunch dish. Enjoy!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

challenge six - wrap up

challenge six - wrap up

this time around, we've a 5:3, as catherine is mid-move to law school! irreplaceable, however. :)

*quinoa stuffed spaghetti squash
*ro-vegged walnut crusted pork
*pork scaloppini w/ spaghetti squash primavera

pork scaloppini with spaghetti squash primavera

This installment of 5:4 was quite a challenge for me! My family does not like squash, and I have only had spaghetti squash once before- with mixed feelings. This dish is not terribly "inspired", but it was wonderful nonetheless! I can't wait to see what the other two chefs came up with! Check 5:4 for their dishes. Catherine- We wish you tons of luck in law school, and miss you already! 5:4 will be one short until your return!

Pork Scaloppini With Spaghetti Squash Primavera P1

1 pork tenderloin, thinly sliced
½ spaghetti squash, cooked and separated into strands
1 eggplant, peeled and cubed
1 quart tomatoes with Italian seasoning (home-canned)
6 large button mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, pressed
¼ cup toasted pine nuts
Salt & Pepper
Olive oil

In a colander in the sink toss the eggplant with 1 tsp salt, let sit 15 minutes. Rinse well and squeeze the eggplant cubes to extract any extra water.
In a large sauté pan, heat 1 TBSP oil over medium heat until hot. Add in the eggplant, mushrooms, and onions and sauté for 10 minutes until everything has released its moisture. Add in garlic and cook another 3-5 minutes, stirring often. Pour tomatoes into pan, reduce heat, and simmer uncovered for 10-15 minutes until sauce has thickened slightly. Toss with the squash strands.
Toss the pork with salt and pepper and sauté over medium-high heat in a nonstick pan. Cook about 10 minutes until no longer pink.
I plated this with the pork on the bottom, then the vegetable mixture, then topped it with the toasted pine nuts. Would also be good with a nice dusting of fresh grated Parmesan cheese!

Ro-vegged Walnut crusted Pork

Wanted to put out a warm "Thank you" to those who provided suggestions for this 5:4! And say to CB (our fellow 5:4er) we miss you but wish you a very SUCCESSFUL year at school!
Ro-vegged Walnut crusted Pork P2
by Nau-Dee

Pork tenderloin
1 med and 1 small Eggplant
2 cans diced tomatoes, drained and rinsed
Walnuts, ground/chopped to make 1.5 cups
salt and pepper to taste
2 cups of parm cheese
2 to 3 TAB chopped garlic from a jar
3 tsp Italian herbs for the veggies
2 to 3 TAB Italian herbs for the meat
2 eggs and 3 to 4 TAB water
Olive oil
1 large spaghetti squash
(this makes a bunch so cut back if you aren't feeding many or don't want left overs)

To make:
Cut the spaghetti squash in half, and scrap out the seeds (be careful not to over scrap or you'll pull out the good strands). Stab it a few times with a fork or knife and place on a cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour (til its really tender!)

Peel and dice the eggplant into small cubes. In a skillet add Olive oil, a few TAB of chopped garlic and add the eggplant (The eggplant will soak up the oil but keep stirring it around so it doesn't get too brown to fast. As it cooks it will release some of the oil back out). Add salt and a few TAB spoons of Italian herbs. Saute til reduced a bit and nice and tender. Add more salt to taste, if needed.Drain and rinse the tomatoes. When eggplant is finished do the same with the tomatoes (garlic, salt and Italian seasoning).

Saute tomatoes a few minutes to marinate the flavors a bit. Remove from heat and mix the tomatoes in with the eggplant. Set aside.

Chop/grind nuts til its slightly chunky but with a bit of a powder too. Add a cup of parm cheese, salt, pepper and 3 TAB Italian seasoning. Blend and spread out on a plate.

Beat egg and water together in a bowl that allows the loin to be dipped into.

After cleaning the meat and scraping off any casing or clear skin (see photo above) cut the loin in half (NOT lengthwise). Dip in beaten egg and water mixture and roll into the nut mixture. In the same skillet the veggies were in add a few TAB of oil, heat and add the coated pork. Cook on med heat (slow cook it to keep it juicy). When its really golden brown and cooked til no longer pink in the middle. Drain on paper towel and allow meat to rest for a few moments and then slice.
When squash is done take and scrap a fork across it and dump into a skillet with some olive oil, 1/2 cup parm cheese and salt. Place on a plate.
Top with sauteed veggies and then top that with the walnut pork rounds. ENJOY!

quinoa stuffed spaghetti squash

quinoa stuffed spaghetti squash

what a difficult 5:4 this was - i just wasn't hacking it, until an ephiphany hit me and i came up with this. the required ingredients were spaghetti squash, pork, tomatoes, eggplant, and nuts.

1 medium spaghetti squash
1/2 c. quinoa
1 c. water or broth
1/4 of a large eggplant, diced

3 large mushrooms, sliced
1/8 c. oven-dried tomatoes, chopped (see recipe below)
3 slices of bacon, chopped into bits

1/4 c. almonds, coarsely chopped
salt, fresh ground pepper

cut squash in half lengthwise, remove innards. season with salt and fresh ground pepper, and put in microwave safe dish with about 1/2 c. water. cover with saran wrap and microwave on high for approximately 20 minutes, until soft.
meanwhile, bring quinoa and broth to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
also meanwhile, toast almonds. remove, then fry bacon. mid-way, add mushrooms and eggplant. continue until near cooked through.
once the quinoa has absorbed all or most of the broth, add bacon, almonds, tomatoes, mushrooms, eggplant, and mix together. adjust seasonings.
remove squash, and stuff each side with quinoa mixture. serve.

(note: i apologize for the dark photo, even my photo enhancer still wouldn't make it much lighter.)

challenge five - wrap up

challenge five - wrap up

chosen ingredients: sausage, peppers, legumes, tomatoes, parsley

* flat out pizza
* sausage and peppers with lentils and couscous
* mex-brunch skillet
* sausage chili with amaranth topping