Cooking

 Easy Lemon Garlic Chicken

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I make this dish often. It is healthy, easy, quick and tasty. It can be served with rice, salad, or just steamed vegetables.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 15-20 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes
Yields 2 servings

Ingredients:
2 chicken breasts
1/4 cup olive oil
3 cloves minced garlic
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 tsp lemon juice
1 lemon zest
1 tsp thyme
salt and pepper

First rub the chicken breast with some olive oil, salt and pepper and let it rest for a couple of minutes.  Meanwhile, in sauce pan saute minced garlic with olive oil on medium heat. Cut your chicken into cubes.  Place the chicken into the sauce pan with garlic and brown it on both sides.  Add chicken stock, white wine, lemon juice, thyme and lemon zest. Wait the liquid to start boiling, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and let the chicken cook for about 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes turn on the heat to medium-hight and wait for the liquid to cook down for about 5 minutes.  Let the chicken rub the sauce on its self and…

Enjoy!

 

Meat and Potatoes Casserole

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It was a chilly day day, so I was on the mood for something cozy, Baked Meat and Potatoes my style. It has simple ingredients, easy to make and delicious.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Inactive cooking time: 50 minutes
Total time: 1 hour

Ingredients:
8 medium potatoes
1 onion
3 cloves of garlic
1 pound ground beef
1 cup of chicken stock
~2 tsp salt x 2
~1tsp pepper x 2

For topping
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Preheat the over to 375F degrees. Peel the potatoes and slice them thinly. Cover the bottom of an oiled casserole dish with the potatoes.  Spread half of the meat on top of the potatoes.  Chop the onion and the garlic cloves. Sprinkle half of the onion and the garlic on top of the meat.  Season the dish with salt and pepper. Place the rest of the potatoes on top of the meat.  In the same order as before, spread the rest of the meat, onions, garlic, salt and pepper and on top of the potatoes.  In the small bowl, mix mayonnaise with parmesan cheese. Spread the mixture on top of the dish.  Pour the chicken stock into the dish, cover it with foil and place in the 375F degrees for about 50 minutes or till the potatoes are tender.  After 45 minutes, take the foil off and let the cheese brown. When the potatoes are ready, the dish is ready to eat.

Enjoy!

 

Fresh Pumpkin Oatmeal Bar

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I had some left over pumpkin that I wanted to use, so I decided to come up with a fresh pumpkin oatmeal bars recipe. This healthy easy recipe was a hit in my family, the bar turned out great!

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes

Ingredients:

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 cup of white flour
1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
1 cup quick oats
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp ginger
2 tsp cinnamon
2 cup of shredded pumpkin
white chocolate chip (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.

Mix eggs, sugar and oil together.  In a separate bowl mix together white flour, wheat flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, ginger, and cinnamon. Then add it to the egg mixture. Mix it all together.  Shred the pumpkin in a food processor or by hand. Using a large wooden spoon fold the pumpkin into the batter.  Spread the batter on an oiled 9×12 baking pan.  If you chose to, sprinkle the chocolate on top.  Place the pan in the oven for 30 minutes. When it’s ready get your pan out and let it rest for 5 minutes.  Cut the bars into squares and…

Enjoy!

Whole Wheat Sandwich Bread

I love my bread machine. I put the ingredients in before I go to bed and in the morning, I have a fresh, delicious bread. It took me a while to figure out a perfect sandwich whole wheat bread recipe, but, finally, here it is.

Ingredients:

3 cups whole-wheat flour
1 1/4 cup of white flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups warm water (not too hot or it will kill the yeast)
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons olive oil (or melted butter)
2 ¼ teaspoons yeast

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Enjoy!

 

How to Prep Pumpkin for cooking

I love cooking with fresh pumpkin during the fall season. I would like to post a tutorial on how to prep pumpkin for cooking.

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1. Cut your pumpkin in two halves.

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2. Scoop all the seeds out.

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3. Slice the pumpkin, like you slice a water melon.

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4. Then, take each slice and peel off the skin with a potato a peeler or a knife.

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5. Once the skin is off, cut the pumpkin into 1 inch cubes or shred it with food processor or by hand with a shredded.

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Now, your pumpkin is ready for cooking. You can check some of my fresh pumpkin recipes like Fresh Pumpkin Oat Muffins, Pumpkin Soup Puree, or Fresh Pumpkin Oatmeal Bars.

 

Spaghetti Marinara With Ground Meat

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This tasty, quick and easy recipe will help you to prepare a perfect dinner for your family.

Yield 4 servings
Cook time 20 minutes

Ingredients:
1 onion
1 lb ground beef (you can use ground chicken or turkey for healthier version)
1 tbs salt
1 tsp pepper
1 jar of tomato sauce
1/2 pack of spaghetti
1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Chop the onion, place them on a large warm oiled sauce pan and cook till golden on medium heat.  Place the ground meat on the pan with onions. Break the meat on the small pieces with spatula, add salt and pepper.  Cook the meat till there is no red (~2 minutes).  Pour the tomato sauce into the pan. Mix the sauce, meat and onions, wait for the mixture to boil. Then turn the heat down to low, cover the pan and let the sauce to simmer on low for about 15 minutes.  Mean while, cook the pasta according to the instruction on the package.  For a regular spaghetti I boil the water with 2 tsp salt in the pot. Once the water started to boil, I place pasta in the pot. Stir the pasta. After 6-10 minutes, I drain the pasta and wash it. I put some butter or olive oil in the pot and then add pasta to it. I mix it all together.

When pasta is ready, place it on the plate, add your sauce on top, sprinkle the dish with parmesan cheese.

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Enjoy!

How to Take a Chicken Apart
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I don’t like to waste any food. So when I buy a chicken I like to cook every part of it. For my family, I usually buy two chickens, take them apart and make 4-6 dinner dishes out of them.

From the chicken breast I make chicken parmesan, lemon chicken or chicken schnitzels.

From the legs and wings I make baked chicken with vegetables or just a simple BBQ.

From one carcass I make chicken broth for soups, risotto or other cooking, and I freeze the other one for later.

When I bring the chicken home from the store, first, I wash it to get ready to disassemble. Then, place the chicken on its back and find the middle between the two breasts. Insert the knife and cut it in the middle.
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Feel the breast and cut it out.
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Do the same with the other side.
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Next, flip the chicken and look for the joint that connects the wing to the body and cut in the middle of the connections on both sides.
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Then look for the joint that connects the legs to the body and make an incision.
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Once you cut through the joint feel the leg and cut around it.
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Do the same with the other side and then disassembly is completed.
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Your chicken is ready for cooking.

 

 

High Protein Low Fat Lentil Tuna Salad
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This easy and healthy high protein lentil tuna salad is great on a toast or on a cracker for a mid day snack.

Ingredients:
1 can White tuna
1 cup of cooked lentils
1/2 onion
1 tbs olive oil
3 sticks of celery
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 tbs mayonnaise

Chop onion and saute it with olive oil on the medium heat til golden. Place the onions in the bowl. Chop the celery, add it to the bowl.

Add tuna and lentils to the bowl. Then add salt, pepper, and mayonnaise.

Mix it all together

Put it on a toast or a cracker…

And Enjoy!

 

Easy Dinner Mashed Potatoes and Meatballs
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This is definitely our family staple, my kids love mashed potatoes with meatballs. It is quick and easy to make, and you can have a healthy home cooked meal in 30 minutes.

Ingredients:
Mashed Potatoes
8 medium potatoes
1 tbsp salt
1/8 cup butter
1/2 cup milk

Meatballs
1 pound ground meat
1 cup milk
2 slices of white bread
1 egg
1/4 onion
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 cup bread crumbs or flour

To make the most of you time, first, put a pot with water a stove to boil. Meanwhile, peel the potatoes and cut each potato on quarters, so they can cook faster.

Once the water starting to boil, put salt and peeled potatoes in and let them cook on medium heat till potatoes are tender.

While the potatoes are cooking, place ground meat in a medium bowl. Crack one egg in.

In a separate bowl, mix walk with white bread. Let the bread soak all the milk in.

Place the soaked bread in the meat bowl (don’t pour the milk in)

Shred the onion

Place the shredded onion in the meat bowl. Add salt and pepper.

Mix in all together using a large spoon or your hands

Place the bread crumbs or flour on a plate

Make a medium meatball and place it in the bread crumbs

Bread both sides

Place the meatball on an oiled skillet

Cook covered on medium heat for about 7 minutes then flip the meatballs to the other side

Cook on the other side for another 7-8 minutes till the meatballs are ready.

While the meatballs are cooking, check your potatoes with a fork for tenderness. If the fork can easily get in and out of the potato, it is ready. Drain the potatoes using colander (spagetti drainer).

Reduce the heat to small, add butter and milk in and let the butter melt.
put the potatoes back in the pot. Using a masher, mash the potatoes and mix it with the heated milk and butter.
Whisk the mashed potatoes with a whisker to make it smooth.
Place your mashed potatoes on a plate and a meatball and vegetables and your dinner is ready.
Enjoy!

 

Healthy Delicious Oat Waffles
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I love waffles, and it took me a while to come up with a recipe that is healthy and delicious. I use olive oil instead of butter and I use oat flour mixed with white flour instead of just white. The waffles come out crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, the whole family loves them. The recipe make enough waffles for our family breakfast plus a have some leftovers that I put in zip bags and freeze.
Ingredients:

2 eggs
1 cup of oat flour
1 cup of white flour
1 3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Mix eggs and sugar together

Add oil, vanilla and mix it together

Add flour, salt, cinnamon, baking powder and mix everything together

Add milk last and mix it together till the mixture is smooth

Pour the dough on the waffle maker ….

Add some fruits or maple syrup and…

Enjoy!

 

Healthy Lunch On the Go
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Beans and Cheese Quesadilla

Cooking time 10 minutes

Ingredients:
2 tortilla
2 tbs shredded cheese
1/4 cup refried beans
1 tbs Olive oil

Place a tortilla on an oiled pan.

On medium heat, wait until the cheese start to melt, then place and spread the beans on top of the cheese.
Cover with the other tortilla and cook for about 2 minutes.

Flip the Quesadilla and cook on the other side until golden.

Take off the skillet, place it on the plate and cut it like a pizza.

Serve it with some carrots, apples or broccoli and Enjoy!
or
Place the Quesadilla in a container or a zip bag grab some fruits or veggies and your lunch on the go is ready.

 

Home Made Chicken Nuggets
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My children love chicken nuggets, but I refuse to feed them the store bought chicken nuggets, that have more ingredients than letters in the alphabet. I make them chicken nuggets myself and they love them.

Prep time 10 minutes
Cooking time 20 minutes
Ingredients:

2 Chicken breast or 4 thighs
2 Egg
1/2 cup flour
1 tbs salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 tbs olive oil for cooking

Mix flour, salt and pepper in a large plate.

Cut the chicken onto small strips or pieces.

In a separate bowl whisk eggs. Then, take each strip and place it in the egg bowl.

Place the egged chicken on the flour plate and pad both sides in the flour mixture.

Place the chicken on an oiled pan and cook on both sides on mediem heat till golden brown for about 8 minutes each side.

Place it on a plate and Enjoy!

 

Frozen Ice Cream Cake Tutorial
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For my daughter’s Frozen Birthday Party I made her a Frozen Ice Cream Cake. I was doing a great job capturing every step of making it, until it came the last part. I was putting the cake together during the birthday party, so I forgot to take the pictures, but I hope the detailed description I provide will be enough to replicate it. The cake was delicious, everyone loved it kids and adults.

Making the cake is time consuming, but if you spread the work in 3 days, it is not too bad.

Frozen Blue Cake

INGREDIENTS:
1 cup white sugar- twice
1/2 cup butter- twice
2 eggs- twice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract- twice
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour- twice
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder- twice
1/2 cup milk- twice
15 drops of blue food coloring- twice

Both two layer you will need to do everything twice. If you are used to baking, you can double all the ingredient and then, equally divide between two pans. I just did everything twice.

Whipped Cream Frosting

Ingredients:

2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup sugar
1½ tsp. Unflavored Gelatin
4 tsp. water

You will also need :

1/4 cup of Strawberry jam
1.5 pints of vanilla ice-cream
Day 1

Bake the cakes.

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9 inch round pan.

In a medium bowl, cream together the sugar and butter.
Beat in the eggs, one at a time.
Stir in the vanilla.

Drop in the food coloring.
Combine flour and baking powder, add to the creamed mixture and mix well.

Finally stir in the milk until batter is smooth.

Pour or spoon batter into the prepared pan.

Bake for 30 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven.
Once the cakes (Cake 1 and Cake 2) cooled down, cut Cake 1 in the middle into two layers, so you can put the strawberry jam in between them later. Wrap it and freeze it.

Place Cake 2 on a large plate and cut the middle part out, wrap it together with a plastic wrap freeze it.

You will need to have the both cakes frozen to be able to put ice cream inside.

Day 2

Next day, take a SOFT vanilla ice cream, about 1.5 pints, and place it inside the Cake 2. Wrap it with a plastic wrap and put it back in the freezer.

Separate two layers from Cake 1 and spread strawberry jam in between. If jam is too thick, you can add a little bit of water to make it easy for spreading. Put both layers together, wrap it in the plastic bag and leave it in the refrigerator overnight.

The same day, make Whipped Cream Frosting.

Whipped Cream Frosting Instructions

Whip the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla on high or until thickened with an electric mixer. Mix the water and gelatin in microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for about 20 seconds. Let the gelatin cool off a little bit before poring it to the cream. Add the gelatin to the whipped cream slowly and beat on high until the whipped cream becomes more firm. Cover it and refrigerate over night.

Day 3

On the day of the party, take Cake 1, spread whipped cream on it, then place Cake 2 (with ice cream) on top. Place the whole cake back in the freezer until about 30 minutes before serving.

About 30 minutes before serving the cake, take the cake out, spread the rest of the whipped cream on top and the sides. Place decorations and candles on the top and ENJOY!

 

Easy Veggie Pancakes
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Prep time 20 minutes
Cooking time 20 minutes
Total cooking time 40 minutes

Ingredients:
6 Potatoes
1 onion
1 large zucchini
2 eggs
1/4 cup flour
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tbs Olive oil

Peel and shredd potatoes, zuccini and onion in a food processor or by hands.

Add eggs, salt , pepper. Mix well together, then add flour.

Mix all the ingredients together. Using the spoon put the pancakes on a oiled pan.

Cook the on both sides until golden brown.

Enjoy!

 

Easy Pumpkin Soup
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To finish up my pumpkin cooking project, I would like to share one of my girls’ favorites Dairy and Gluten Free Pumpkin Soup. There are many different variations of a Pumpkin Soup, but my kids love the simplest and the healthiest dairy and gluten-free version.

Prep time 15 minutes, cooking time 30 minutes. Total time 45 minutes.

Ingredients: 5 cups Cut Fresh Pumpkin

5 cups Chicken Stock

1 onion

2 tbs olive oil

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 tbs paprika

1tsp nutmeg

First, I chop an onion and saute it with olive oil in a large sauce pan on a medium heat until golden brown. While onion is cooking, I peel and cut pumpkin into cubes. I add cut pumpkin to onions and cook them for about 5 minutes. Then I add chicken stock, paprika, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. I Bring it to boil then turn the heat down and let it cook until pumpkin is soft, about 30 minutes. I feel the pumpkin with fork, when it is soft, I transfer the soup into a blender and puree until the substance is smooth. I transfer my soup to a plate and Enjoy! When I have some toasted pumpkin seeds, I can crush them and use to garnish my plate with soup.

 

Fresh Pumpkin Oat Muffins
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“Mommy, can we please cook something today!” Were the first words that came of out my three year old this morning. “Of course, my dear!” I said ” We still have that pumpkin that we took all the seeds out another day. Let’s make Pumpkin Muffins!” I have an old recipe that I use every fall and people love it. It requires fresh shredded pumpkin and oat flour. The muffins come out healthy, clean and delicious.

Prep time: 30 mins Cook time: 30 mins Total time: 1 hour

Ingredients

3 cups shredded fresh pumpkin
2 cups all-purpose flour (1 cup oat flour+ 1 cup all purpose flour)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cups sugar
¾ cup vegetable oil
3 large or 4 small eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Instructions
Preheat oven to 325F degrees.

After you cut your pumpkin in halves, take all the seeds out, slice it, like you slice a water melon. Then, take each slice and peel off the skin with a potato peeler or a knife. Once the skin is off, you shred it with food processor or by hand with a shredded. You will need about 3 full cups of shredded pumpkin. If you have a food processor, let your kids shred the pumpkin. It is so much fun for them to see how you put a big piece in and shredded parts come out. If you don’t have a food processor, don’t let your kids use a shredder, they might get cut. Once the pumpkin is ready you can move on to the batter.

Give your child a medium bowl. Let them use measuring spoons to measure the correct amount of the flour, cinnamon, ginger, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Once all the dry ingredients are in, let your child stir it well together.

Then, give your child a large bowl. Let him/her crack the egg, then mix in the sugar, oil, and vanilla. Then have your child add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture and mix until just combined. Add the pumpkin and mix everything together. (As you see, I let my three year old do everything herself. I am not saying that I gave her everything and left, no, I supervised her every step, but I let her do it from the beginning to the end.)

Give you child a large spoon and let him/her scoop the batter into prepared muffin pan.

Bake for about 30 minutes. When the muffins are cooled down, you can take them out and Enjoy them with you Little Chef.

 

 

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