Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

Broccoli Rice Casserole

Standard
Broccoli Rice Casserole

2015/01/img_1344-1.jpg
We’ve all had broccoli rice casserole at one time or another, and this isn’t too far off from the original recipe from Cambell’s. It’s just got a few tweaks to give it some extra dimension and flavor!

Ingredients:
1 lb (16 oz) frozen cut broccoli
8 oz Velveeta
1 onion
1/2 stick butter
1 1/2 c rice
2 oz cream cheese
2 cloves of garlic chopped
Roasted red peppers
1 can cream of chicken and mushroom soup (the blend is really good!)
1/3 c milk
Salt, pepper, cayenne pepper

1. Sauté your chopped onion in your butter for about 15 minutes until they start to turn golden. Meanwhile, cook your 1 1/2 c rice according to the package instructions.

2015/01/img_1330.jpg

2. Put your broccoli in a microwaveable safe container and fill halfway with water. Pop it in your microwave for five minutes to steam them so they’re cooked but still crunchy.

2015/01/img_1329.jpg

3. After your onion is mostly cooked, add your chopped garlic and sauté another few minutes. Season it all with salt, pepper, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. I also added chopped up roasted red peppers. I only had a half a jar, but would’ve done a full jar if I had it.

2015/01/img_1331.jpg

4. Add your cheeses and cream of mushroom & chicken and cook on low until it’s melted.

2015/01/img_1332.jpg

5. Add your milk and it will thin out the sauce a bit.

2015/01/img_1333.jpg

6. Now add your broccoli…

2015/01/img_1341.jpg

7. …then add your cooked rice 😄

2015/01/img_1342.jpg

8. Now pour this into a buttered casserole dish and bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. So good!

2015/01/img_1344-1.jpg

Advertisements

Easy Glazed Ham

Standard
Easy Glazed Ham

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/991/58902680/files/2015/01/img_0999.jpg
Glazed ham has got to be one of my favorite things to eat and cook. It’s so easy and that delicious ham can feed your family for a week!

I remember years ago when I first tried to bake a ham for my first Easter away from home. If you’ll google ham recipes, you’ll find lots with cloves that you stick into the ham, then later remove. It’s pretty tasty, but cloves are expensive, plus time consuming to put in and remove before eating. I’ve tried all these complicated and expensive (to me) recipes, but I’ve finally settled on my favorite glazed ham recipe and it only requires three ingredients! I even have a solution to cloves and it keeps your ham moist, plus it adds some awesome flavor to your juice that you save and make a pot of peas, green beans, or anything else with. I’ll give you a bonus recipe as well with what I did with this leftover ham 🙂

Ingredients:
1 c apple cider
1/2 c brown sugar
1/4 c honey
Ham (I mean, obviously…)

Ok, first lets talk about the ham. Sure, everyone loves the spiral cut runway model of hams. But who has $50 to blow on a ham? Especially when you can spend $10-$15 on the same amount of meat and you just cut it yourself. Do yourself a favor if you’re penny pinching like me and buy the cheapest ham at your grocery store, which will most likely be the shank end of a ham. Remember you’re glazing it yourself, so no need for any extras like pre-packaged full of preservatives and other stuff glaze. Just a cheap ham shank. Also, this glaze is going to work for any ham up to about 12 pounds, so if your ham is bigger, just make a little more glaze.

1. Take a paring knife and cut all around your ham in one direction about 1/4 inch into the ham, then around it again in the opposite direction making little diamonds all over your ham. Now it sorta resembles a checkerboard. This will let the skin crisp up and allow the glaze to flavor the inside of the ham once we get there. Place your ham in a large roasting pan. Do not underestimate the amount of juice your ham will make and put it into a roasting dish that’s too small. You’ll end up cleaning up your oven forever! Ask me how I know this 😳

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/991/58902680/files/2015/01/img_0992.jpg

2. Pour one cup of apple cider in with your ham. Any apple cider will do. They’re spiced and seasoned with yummy flavors like clove, cinnamon, and who knows what else. I just know it’s delicious and really gives the ham a yummy flavor, plus it keeps it moist. Then cover in foil and place in your oven 15-20 minutes PER POUND at 325. So, if your ham is 10 pounds, that’s 150-200 minutes baking time. The last 30 minutes of your baking time we will glaze the ham, so set a timer for yourself. Also, you pick the cooking time based on how your tastes are, so my suggestion is set a timer for the shorter time, look at it, and if you want to cook it longer (like I did), then cook it longer.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/991/58902680/files/2015/01/img_0993.jpg

3. The last 30 minutes of your baking time remove the foil from your ham and pour the glaze all over it. To make the glaze, just put your brown sugar and honey in a microwave safe bowl and nuke it about 1 minute, stirring halfway through. If you don’t have a microwave, you can do it on your stovetop. After you’ve poured the glaze on, put back in your oven for another 30 minutes.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/991/58902680/files/2015/01/img_0996.jpg

4. After 30 minutes your ham is done! Take it out and let it rest about 10-15 minutes before slicing into it.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/991/58902680/files/2015/01/img_0998.jpg

Things to do with leftover ham:

1. Similar to the Hawaiian Sweet Roll ham sandwich recipe I’m sure you’ve all tasted at parties, here is my spin on that: Using 24 dinner rolls from your store’s bakery, cut in half and place on a sheet pan. Cover bottom roll with 50/50 miracle whip/mayo and top with leftover ham and Swiss cheese. Place top back on rolls. In a microwave safe dish, mix 1 cup baked ham juice from roasting pan and 1 stick melted butter. Pour over the rolls and allow to sit anywhere from 10 minutes to overnight in the fridge wrapped in foil. Place covered in foil in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes, then serve the most delicious little ham sandwich straight from heaven.

2. Save the leftover ham juice and ham hock. You can use them separately in different dishes to stretch out the use of your ham. Check out my turnip greens recipe if you like those. Or put the ham hock in a pot of beans, cream peas, soup, etc. You can’t go wrong! I even used part of my leftover juice to boil a bag of frozen green beans with salt and pepper and they were fantastic!

Hambone, hambone, have ya heard?! I’m sorry, I couldn’t resist 😄

Green Bean Casserole

Standard
Green Bean Casserole

Green Bean Casserole

Are y’all so excited for Thanksgiving? I can hardly wait! I’ve been looking forward to this delicious meal for the last month, and I’ve been prepping to get everything ready for the big day. This green bean casserole is creamy, cheesy, and so yummy! I am going to freeze it today and then take it out of my freezer Wednesday night before Thanksgiving and let it defrost in the fridge overnight. It’s one of those side dishes I can easily prepare ahead of time so I’m not swamped doing everything the day of.

Ingredients:
2 frozen bags of whole green beans
1 large sweet onion
2 cloves garlic
1/2 stick of butter
1 jar of pimentos or 1/4 c roasted red bell peppers chopped
8 oz Velveeta
2 oz cream cheese
1 can cream of mushroom
6 oz (1 can) French’s fried onions
Salt and pepper
Cayenne pepper (optional)

1. First boil your green beans in salted water for about 10 minutes. You want them cooked all the way through, just not so cooked that they’re soggy and limp like canned green beans. Bleh! Fresh is what makes all the difference in this recipe. Once they’re done, drain and set aside.
-12

2. Meanwhile, saute your onions, garlic, butter, salt, and pepper over medium heat until they start to turn golden. -13

3. Once your onions are done, add your cream of mushroom, cream cheese, Velveeta, and roasted red peppers to the pan. Also add a pinch of cayenne pepper if you want to. You’ll want to watch this and stir often so it doesn’t burn on the bottom.
-14

4. Once that’s all melted and smelling delicious, add 1/2 your can of fried onions to this and stir together.
-15

5. Now add your creamy mix to the green beans and stir together gently.
-16
-17

6. Lastly, sprinkle the last of the fried onions over the top of the green beans and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.
-20

Enjoy 🙂

Homemade Chicken Broth

Standard
Homemade Chicken Broth

Homemade Chicken Broth

Chicken broth made at home is so much tastier than the boxed/canned stuff you get at the store, not to mention much cheaper when you compare how much this makes! This broth is great for any recipe, like Chicken Noodle Soup, Texas Cornbread Dressing, or any other recipe that calls for broth or stock. What’s the difference between broth and stock? Stock is really more about the carcass of the animal (chicken bones, beef bones, etc.) and broth boils the meat. They’re both delicious, but broth is a bit quicker to make and doesn’t take all day boiling away, plus it leaves you with leftover meat you can chop up and make just about anything with (soup, chicken salad, enchiladas, the possibilities are endless!). Also, I should note I used chicken thighs for this broth recipe because that’s what I had in my freezer and not a whole chicken. Either one will work perfectly. The key is you want your chicken to have skin and bones, because it’s going to deliver the most flavor.

Ingredients:
1 bunch of celery with leaves
3 carrots
1 large onion skin on
2 bay leaves
2 Knorr chicken bouillon cubes
1 T garlic herb seasoning
1.5 gallons of water (24 cups of water)
1 large package chicken thighs or 1 whole chicken between 2.5-3.5 pounds (my chicken thighs were 3 pounds)

1. Don’t even bother peeling or skinning your veggies, just give them a rough chop and throw them all in your stock pot.
IMG_4030

2. Add your chicken and seasonings into the pot.
IMG_4031

3. Cover with water and bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and leave uncovered.
IMG_4032
Homemade Chicken Broth

4. After about an hour and a half your broth is done cooking! Take out a strainer and place over another large pot or bowl in your sink and pour everything out of your stock pot into it. I suggest pulling your chicken out first before trying this move, because if your strainer is like mine, it’s probably not big enough to hold all of that.
IMG_4035

5. Now you have lots of delicious broth left in your bowl and you can use it now or freeze in containers and use whenever you want. So good!
-14

Dutch Apple Pie

Standard
Dutch Apple Pie

Dutch Apple Pie

This cooler weather is so perfect for baking something delicious in your kitchen and making your whole house smell amazing! This Dutch Apple Pie is so good and is made with my absolute favorite apples: Honey Crisp. You can make this pie with a mix of different apples or just pick your favorite, but I highly suggest Honey Crisp! Also, I’ve made this without the pie crust many times and just made it in a baking dish as a crisp and it’s perfect too! 

 Ingredients: 

 (Filling) 

  • 5-6 peeled and sliced thin apples 
  • 3 T flour 
  • Juice of 1 lemon 
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon 
  • 1/4 c brown sugar packed 
  • 1/2 c white sugar 
  • Your favorite pie crust

 (Topping) 

  • 3/4 c flour
  •  1/4 c brown sugar
  •  1/4 c white sugar
  •  1/2 tsp cinnamon 
  • 1/3 c butter cut into cubes

 1. Stir all filling ingredients in a large bowl and dump into pie crust. I used a frozen pie crust because ain’t nobody got time to make a homemade crust!
image

2. Combine your topping ingredients in a bowl and using either a pastry cutter or two forks stir together until butter is well incorporated and is roughly the size of peas.
image
image

3. Place pie on a foil lined cookie sheet to prevent spills and bake at 375 for 50 minutes. Allow to cool on cooling rack before eating. It’s perfection, trust me!
image

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Standard
Roasted Brussels Sprouts

image

If you’re one of those people that thinks they don’t like Brussels Sprouts, I urge you to try this recipe. It’s delicious and goes great as a side to any main course!

Ingredients:
1 container of Brussels Sprouts halved
1/2 stick of butter
Olive oil
Garlic salt, pepper, cayenne pepper

1. Normally, I use a container of Brussels Sprouts for this recipe. However, my grocery store had this bad boy in stock for a steal! So I cut them off the stalk myself.
image

2. Spread Brussels Sprouts halves over a cookie sheet lined with foil (to help with clean up later). Drizzle with olive oil and 1/2 stick of butter sliced into pats. The thing about butter is it makes everything delicious. I’m not a big stickler for how much to use here, so I try to go by this rule: when I think I’ve added enough butter, I add a little more just to be sure! Then season with garlic salt and pepper liberally and a light dusting with cayenne pepper.
image

3. Pop these puppies into a preheated 375F degree oven for about 45 minutes.
image

4. You’ll know they’re done when some of them begin to caramelize and turn golden.
image

Texas Cornbread Dressing

Standard
Texas Cornbread Dressing

Finished Cornbread Dressing2

With a busy schedule I like to make different parts of Thanksgiving ahead of time and take them out of the freezer closer to the big Turkey Day, so I have less to do when it actually gets here. Dressing is one of the easiest things to make and freeze ahead of time, and I’ll tell you step-by-step how to do it. This is my Mamaw’s recipe she has been making for years. She combined her mother-in-law’s cornbread dressing recipe with another she found in the paper years ago and it is truly the yummiest dressing ever. Let’s get started!

Ingredients:
1 pan of cornbread (you can use your favorite cornbread mix and make as directed on the package – I used Arrowhead Mills Whole Wheat Cornbread Mix)
5 pieces of toasted bread
1 stick of butter
1 sweet onion finely chopped
4 celery stalks chopped
4 hard boiled eggs chopped
1/2 chopped toasted pecans
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of celery soup
1 1/2 cups of chicken broth
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp onion salt
1/4 tsp celery salt
1/8 tsp curry powder (we’ll talk about this in a second…)
Salt and pepper to taste

1. First get your cornbread mix going and bake as directed on the box/package. It takes about 30 minutes to get that cooked and another 5-10 to let it cool before handling it so you can get this started while you do everything else. Next, toast 5 pieces of bread so that all pieces are golden and crisp. Once the bread is done, break up with your hands into bread crumbs. It’s ok if they’re all different sizes. We’re in Texas and we’ll call it “rustic” 🙂 Set aside in large mixing bowl.
Cornbread Dressing Seasonings

2. About that curry powder… Yes, I know it’s totally weird but as my Mamaw says “People should just barely be able to taste it and think ‘I wonder what that seasoning is?’ without actually putting their finger on it.” Even though it is such a small amount, it really gives this dish a deeper dimension of flavor. Place onions, celery, butter, and seasonings in a saute pan and cook for about 20 minutes on medium heat. Cue the music, it’s about to get sexy up in here…
Butter and Veggies Cornbread Dressing

3. Once the veggies are getting closer to done, I like to put both soups and chicken broth in a microwave safe container and nuke it for about 40 seconds because I think it makes it easier to whisk them together.
Cornbread Dressing Liquid

4. Is your cornbread done yet? You’ll want to get it out and let it cool for a few minutes before scraping it all out and dumping into the bread crumb mixture. Again, break the cornbread up with your hands into those beautiful rustic breadcrumbs.
cornbread

5. While your veggies are finishing up cooking go ahead and toast your chopped pecans. This only takes a few minutes and the moment you smell them, they are done.
Cornbread Dressing Veggies

6. Combine the veggies, soup/broth mix, chopped hard boiled eggs, and pecans all together in large mixing bowl with cornbread/breadcrumbs mixture. Now listen because THIS IS IMPORTANT!!! Do not stir this up too much, because it will cause the dressing to become dense instead of fluffy and delicious. Have you ever tasted someone’s dressing and the texture is similar to a fruit cake/door stop? That’s because they stirred it too much. Stir just enough to combine and place in 9×11 buttered baking dish.

Now, if you’re like me and going to freeze this before Thanksgiving, this is where you get out your plastic wrap and foil. First, wrap 1-2 layers of plastic wrap around baking dish and press plastic wrap onto dressing so that it is actually touching the top. Then finish with a layer of foil. The day before Thanksgiving you can take this out and place it in your fridge to defrost, then bake at 350F for 45 minutes. Otherwise, if you’re making it right now just cook as I just said and bask in the deliciousness that is Southern Cornbread Dressing. Go ahead and pour yourself a glass of wine, you’ve earned it tackling Turkey Day ahead of time!
Cooked Cornbread Dressing