WannaBe Chef

Recipes and randomness from Amanda's kitchen.

Vegetable Tian January 31, 2012

Filed under: Side dish,Vegetable — WannaBe Chef @ 10:46 am

If you’re like me, you have no idea what “tian” means.  Well, a quick Google search tells me that a “tian” is a layered vegetable dish that originated in France.  Works for me!

Vegetable Tian

Ingredients:

  • 1 large summer squash
  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 3 small potatoes
  • 3 roma tomatoes
  • 1/2 large onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • salt and pepper
  • Shredded Italian style cheese

Instructions:

  1. Finely dice the onion and garlic and saute in a skillet with some EVOO until softened and transluscent.
  2. Thinly slice the other veggies.  I recommend slicing the potatoes slightly thinner than the other veggies because they take longer to cook.
  3. Spray a 2-qt or 8×8 or 9×9 casserole with cooking spray.  Layer the cooked onions and garlic on the bottom of the dish.
  4. Layer the sliced veggies in an alternating pattern in the dish.  Season liberally with salt and pepper.
  5. Cover with foil and bake at 400 for about 30-45 minutes until veggies are tender.
  6. Remove foil, cover veggies with cheese and bake for another 10-15 minutes until cheese is melted and starts to brown.  You may need to switch to broil if you’re impatient like me 🙂

This was a very tasty side dish.  We had it with salmon and garlic knots.  I think this would be really good with sweet potatoes, and you could change up the cheese and seasonings, too.

 

Creamy Jalapeno Ranch Dip January 30, 2012

Filed under: Dips/sauces/dressings,Sandwiches — WannaBe Chef @ 11:41 am

Happy Monday!  I’m back with a cool, creamy, all-purpose dip for you.  This recipe makes a LOT of dip, and it was a little tricky to make in my mini food processor, but I figured it out (just had to do it in two batches, then combine!).  Anywho, this dressing was absolutely delicious.  It wasn’t spicy at all, though.  If you want it spicy, I would try adding jarred jalapenos since I find that they tend to be hotter than the fresh ones.

Creamy Jalapeno Ranch Dip

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups Ranch dressing (from the bottle, or homemade)  I used bottled, light Ranch.  1 1/2 cups is almost a whole bottle.

1/2 cup sour cream  I used light sour cream.

one  bunch of cilantro, stems removed

one large fresh jalapeno, de-seeded and coarsely chopped

one 7 oz. can chopped green chiles  I used the smaller can, it was less than 7 oz.

a large garlic clove, roughly chopped

a teaspoon of salt  I used less, maybe 1/4 – 1/2 tsp.

juice of one lemon  I used half a lemon

Instructions:

Pulse all ingredients in a food processor until smooth.  I would imagine a blender would work, too.  Taste and adjust ingredients as desired.

Wayne and I dipped Doritoes in this, and it was really good.  For dinner, I put it inside turkey wraps with lettuce, tomato, and cheese.  Mmm, mmm!  Today, I plan to use it as salad dressing.  I think it would be really good drizzled on burritoes, enchilladas, or tacos or used as a dip for raw veggies.  The possibilities are endless!

 

 

Polynesian Sausage Supper January 24, 2012

Filed under: Beef — WannaBe Chef @ 11:40 am

Hello, peeps!  I’ve got another quick and easy dinner for you.  I’m not sure why this dish is called what it’s called.  Personally, I would have called it “Sweet and Sour Sausage with Rice” because it’s pretty much identical to THIS Sweet and Sour Chicken.

Polynesian Sausage Supper

I used beef smoked sausage, red onion and red bell pepper.  I did find the whole thing to be a little too “liquidy.”  Next time, I would probably omit the beef broth and add some salt in its place OR use the beef broth and only half of the pineapple juice.


 

Roasted Chickpea Fajitas January 19, 2012

Filed under: Meatless,Mexican-inspired — WannaBe Chef @ 11:48 am

Oh my goodness, these fajitas were so good!  Once again, roasting comes out the winner for tastiest cooking method.  Roasting the chickpeas makes them chewy, hearty, and even a little crispy.  You won’t miss the meat at all in these fajitas.

Roasted Chickpea Fajitas

I followed the recipe loosely.  I didn’t have any cilantro because the stupid store was all out.  I also added some cheese, sour cream, hot salsa, and diced yellow tomatoes.  I didn’t really measure the seasonings either, and ended up adding some EVOO, garlic powder and pepper to the chickpeas before roasting.

 

Italian Crescent Casserole

Filed under: Beef — WannaBe Chef @ 11:38 am

This meal was really easy to make and tasted like a deep dish pizza.  I would have never thought to use crescent rolls like this, but it worked really well.  You could use all different types of filling.  I think it would be good with maybe a chicken pot pie filling, shredded BBQ chicken with cheddar, buffalo chicken with Philly Cooking Creme, or roasted veggies with cheese.

Italian Crescent Casserole

I used lean ground beef, spicy tomato and basil spaghetti sauce, and reduced fat crescents.  I also spiced it up with garlic powder and parmesan cheese.

 

 

Thai Sweet Chili Salmon and Spinach Salad January 11, 2012

Filed under: Fish,Side dish,Vegetable — WannaBe Chef @ 11:35 am

Here’s a healthy and yummy dinner for you!

Broiled Salmon with Thai Sweet Chili Glaze
Recipe from HERE

Basically, I just combined some Thai Sweet Chili sauce and soy sauce, marinated the salmon in it for about an hour, and broiled it.  Then I topped the salmon with some of the same sauce after it was done.  Delicious!!

Spinach Salad
This simple spinach salad has been my go-to side dish lately.  All I do is put a ton of fresh spinach in a big bowl and top with balsamic vinegar, honey, and EVOO.  Then I toss it really well and let it sit for like 15 minutes so the spinach breaks down a little.  This salad is good on its own, or you can top it with whatever you want.  Last night, I used toasted pecans and shaved parmesan.  Simple and tasty!

 

Meatloaf and broccoli January 10, 2012

Filed under: Side dish,Turkey,Vegetable — WannaBe Chef @ 11:39 am

Happy Tuesday!  It definitely doesn’t look or feel like January around here.  We actually went outside for a walk the other day!  Very strange.  Anyway, I’ve got two recipes to share.  First up is the best broccoli you will ever eat.  Really.  I could easily eat an entire pan of this.

Roasted Broccoli
Based on recipe HERE, found via Pinterest

Ingredients:

  • 1 head fresh broccoli (I threw some cauliflower in, too)
  • EVOO
  • salt, pepper, garlic powder
  • Shaved parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 lemon

Instructions:

  1. Do not wash the broccoli (the heat of the oven will take care of any bad stuff).  Preheat oven to 400 F.  Cut broccoli into bite size florets.
  2. Line cookie sheet with foil and spray with nonstick spray.
  3. Spread broccoli in a single layer on cookie sheet, do not overcrowd.  Use a second pan if you need to, as overcrowding will just cause the broccoli to steam instead of roast.
  4. Liberally drizzle EVOO on broccoli, and liberally season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.
  5. Roast in oven 20-25 minutes or until broccoli is crisp-tender and starts to brown.  Keep a close eye on it, and toss halfway through.
  6. Remove from oven and squeeze some lemon juice over it and toss with a handful of shaved parmesan.  Serve immediately.

The second recipe of the day is a new (to me) twist on meatloaf.

Mozzarella and Spinach Stuffed Chicken Meatloaf
Recipe from HERE, found via Pinterest

I used turkey instead of chicken, and omitted the parsley and fennel seed.  I also used fresh spinach and wilted it in the microwave for a minute.  This meatloaf was very tasty, and it smelled like pizza while it was cooking!