Veggie Nuggets

Here’s an easy way to hide the green veggie from your kids (and the adult as well).  Spinach is the green veggie I’m hiding today.

When I saw recipe I knew I had to make it.  I knew it couldn’t be a main course for dinner so I made a glazed ham on along with it.

When I was growing up, my grandma used to make home made mashed potatoes.  She always left the chunks in it.  I remember that wasn’t one of my favorites.  In fact, I almost always buy the pre-made mashed potatoes for that reason.  But lately I’ve been slicing the potatoes and mashing them up myself.  I even left some of the chunks in there and it’s really been ok.

I have a feeling she’s smiling down right now after seeing what I just wrote about her!  And that’s a good thing!

These little Veggie Nuggets were simple to make.

Heat oven to 450 degrees

For the mashed potatoes:

I used 4-5 medium sized red potatoes

1 cup of fat free sour cream

1tsp garlic salt

Directions for the potatoes:

In a medium pot place the sliced potatoes with enough water to cover and bring to a boil.  When the potatoes are tender – about 10-12 minutes, drain and return to pot.

Add the sour cream and garlic salt and mash together.

For the Veggie Nuggets:

Cooking Spray

1 cup Italian Seasoned Bread Crumbs

3 cups of smashed potatoes

2/3 cup of cooked or frozen and thawed spinach, chopped

black pepper to taste

Directions for Veggie Nuggets:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and spray with cooking spray; set aside.

On a plate, add the bread crumbs and set aside as well.

In a medium sized bowl, combine the potatoes and the spinach and season with salt and pepper.  Form bite sized nuggets out of the mixture and roll in bread crumbs.  Transfer the nuggets to the baking sheet and spray lightly with more cooking spray.  Bake until lightly browned and the nuggets are hot.

Serve immediately with any sauce.  We used Ranch Dressing.

For the Ham:

I had a small, pre-sliced ham and placed it in a 9×9 baking dish, sprayed with cooking spray.  Poured some brown sugar and half a can of Sierra Mist over the ham and bake of 20-25 minutes.

I got a thumbs up from Brooklyn, a thumbs down from Caleb and a “what’s in this” from Craig.  I told him it was spinach.  He ate it because I made it, but I’m not so sure it was a fav for him!

Brooklyn and I will eat these again.  I think they were great.  These would be a good appetizer as well.

Have a great rest of the week.

Patricia – Two Girls Cooking

Source

iVillage

Apple Pie Baked in the Apple

The other day I was on Pinterest looking for something good to bake.  I stumbled on this picture of Apple Pie Baked in the Apple.  I thought it looked amazingly good.

I baked this tonight and have to say that this is one of the best apple dessert I’ve had in a long time!  It removed the crust except for the topping, yet it still had the best taste without it.  Being baked inside of the apple was twice the surprise as eating a  regular piece of pie.  You get the sugary, cinnamon flavor of the cut up apples on the inside and the soft baked apple on the outside was soft and sweet.  This is a must try for sure.

Ingredients

Serves 4

5-6 Granny Smith apples that can stand on their own

1 teaspoon of cinnamon – I added a bit more on the apples and on the top of the pie crust when baking

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon brown sugar

Pie Crust (homemade or pre-made) I used the pre-made!

Here’s what you do:

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut the top of 4 apples off and discard.  Remove the inside of each apple with a spoon or melon baller very carefully.

Roll out pie crust and slice into 1/4 inch strips.

Cover the top of the apple in a lattice pattern with pie crust strips.

Place apples in an 8×8 pan.  If your apples are big you may need a bigger pan.  Add just enough water to the cover the bottom of the pan.

Cover with foil and bake for 20-25 minutes.

Remove foil and bake for an additional 20 minutes or until crust is golden brown and sliced apples are soft.

Caleb decided he didn’t want one of these for his bedtime snack.  Too bad for him because now Nana gets to have another one tomorrow!!

I still can’t get over how easy this was to make and how good it was.  Fantastico!!

What a way to end the weekend.  Have a great week.

Patricia – Two Girls Cooking

Source

Paper Plates and China

Pulled Chicken Sandwiches

Pulled Chicken Sandwich

What a great dinner this was last night.  I love a great hardy sandwich!  I can say that I haven’t made any kind of pulled sandwich before, so this was a good one to start with.

I thought about doing a pulled pork or even beef, but honestly felt that chicken would taste better for the people in our house!  Need I say more?  If you’ve read the blog from the past, you’re aware of the picky people eaters!

I asked a friend from work if she’d ever shred chicken breasts before and the best way she thought to do it.  My first thought was to boil it.  But she told me she baked hers first and let it cool then used a fork to pull it apart.

Here’s what I used:

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/2 cup BBQ Sauce – I used Famous Dave’s Sweet and Zesty (If I were just eating it, I’d prefer Devils spit for the heat!!)

1/4 cup water

1tbsp brown sugar

4 Kraft Singles slices – I used fat free

3 baguettes (I found 3 med sized ones and cut one in half for the kids to share).

Directions:

Bake chicken at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes (until cooked through).

Add barbecue sauce, water, chicken and sugar to a skillet.  Stir to coat both sides of chicken. Cover; cook on medium heat 7 min. or until chicken is done (165ºF).

Remove chicken from skillet. Shred with fork or chop into small pieces (after chicken has cooled). Return to skillet; stir to coat with sauce. Cut baguette into 4 pieces; cut each piece lengthwise in half. Fill with chicken mixture and Singles.  I added some sliced onions and pickles to mine!

Pulled Chicken

I’m not a fan of winter in MN, but I am a fan of the comfort food that can be cooked during this time of the year!

Share with us your favorite sandwich that you enjoy making.

Have a great rest of the week.

Patricia – Two Girls Cooking

Brickle Drop Cookies

I haven’t baked much since the holidays are over so when I went to the store this weekend, I saw a bag of Heath Toffee bits, I thought I’d give them a try.  The recipe looked very similar to chocolate chip cookies.  I’ve gotten those down without being afraid of burning or failing!

These were pretty easy to make and pretty good as well.

Ingredients:

1 cup (2 sticks of butter – I used organic unsalted butter), softened

1 cup sugar                                                    3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 cup packed light brown sugar              2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp vanilla extract                                    2 tsp cream of tartar

1/2 tsp salt                                                    1 pkg (80z) Heath bits of brickle toffee bits

3 eggs

1.  Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a cookie sheet.

2.  Beat butter, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla and salt in a large bowl until blended.  Add eggs and beat well.

3.  Stir together flour, baking soda and cream of tartar; gradually add to butter mixture until blended.  Stir in toffee bits.

4.  Drop by heaping teaspoons onto prepared cookie sheets.  Bake 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned.   Cool lightly; remove to wire rack (I don’t have one yet!).  Cool Completely.  Makes about 8 dozen cookies.

 

 

I warmed some caramel in the microwave and poured it over some of the cookies as well.

Nothing too difficult for these.  It made quite a bit of cookies.  And I ate quite a few more than I should have as well.  I think I can have a few cookies more than I’m supposed to in moderation on some days.

Happy Monday!

Patricia – Two Girls Cooking Blog

 

Apple-Nut Crisp

Apple-Nut Crisp

This has been a busy blogging time for me!  It’s the fall time with winter coming and I find there’s more to cook (dare I say bake) at this time of the year.  At least for me.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I’m not a huge “dessert” person but people in my family are.  For the longest time I didn’t even dare try to bake anything because I’ve had ay too many fair share of ruin on my end.  But I’ve had more opportunity to bake things that are a bit healthier for us so I’ve been giving it a try.                                                                                             This recipe is actually called Apple Pear-Nut Crisp, but Craig wanted something with just the apples, so I added more apple and cut out the pear.  (I’m wishing now that I had either added more apple or used the pear).

I won’t call this a failed attempt on my end because it did taste pretty good, but there wasn’t enough fruit in it for us.  I felt that this was a bit high in calories for me.  If you’re watching what you’re eating, I’d rather use those calories on a “salty” food rather than the sweet food.  Since candy is not an option for me I settle for these types of things now to get the sweet from somewhere!

Here’s what you need (Yep, this came from the infamous The Everything Low Cholesterol Cookbook).

2 apples (I used 5) sliced

3 pears (I replaced the pears with more apples)

2tbs lemon juice

1/4 cup sugar

1tsp cinnamon

1/2tsp nutmeg

1 1/2 cup quick cooking oatmeal

1/2 cup flour (I used Better for bread flour)

1/4 cup whole-wheat flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted (I used salt free organic butter)

What you need to do:

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a 9″ round cake pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside

2.  Prepare apples and pears, sprinkling with lemon juice as you work.  Combine in medium bowl with sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Spoon into prepared cake pan.

3.  In same bowl, combine oatmeal, flour, whole-wheat four, and brown sugar and mix well.  Add melted butter and mix until crumbly.  Sprinkle over fruit in dish.

 

4.  Bake for 35-45 minutes or until fruit bubbles and topping is browned and crisp.  Let cool for 15 minutes before serving.

From the cookbook:  Leave the skins on the apples and pears for more fiber and nutrition.  You can peal if you’d like.

This was a good apple dessert that would go well with a cup of hot cider while reading your favorite book.  (I don’t have time for reading when the kids are awake!!!!)

Serves 8

Calories 353.77; Fat 9.97; Saturated fat 5.25; Dietary fiber 6.54; Sodium 61.78; Cholesterol 20.34mg

Finish your weekend well.

Patricia – Two Girls Cooking

Stove Top Sweet Citrus Chicken

Stove Top Sweet Citrus Chicken

Every week I make a list of “what’s for dinner”.  I can’t tell you how long I sit and think about what to have for that week.  I do get tired of the same old things, but it’s so hard to plan when there are different tastes between some of us!!!

But really, I sit and think for at least an hour of what I’m going to make for the seven day week.  This week I told myself I’m trying one new recipe.  I don’t care if  I make it up or I find it online, I’m trying something new.

If it were just me, I’d throw anything together (minus tomatoes!!), but it’s not, so there has to be some planning on my end.  I googled healthy dinners, 7 days dinner plans, 5 day dinner plans, and found a few that the family might like.  In fact, we are trying 3 new meals this week.  So far we had a new mix of sloppy joes (which I forgot to take a pix of – I ate it too fast).  This is one of the recipes I found online and it was sooooooo good.

The citrus in the title does not do it justice.  The orange juice and brown sugar over the chicken is very good.  I highly recommend this one!!!  Even the ones with “different” tastes are sure to like this one!

Here’s what you need:

1-2/3 cups hot water

1 pkg.  (6 oz.) STOVE TOP Stuffing Mix for Chicken

6 small Boneless skinless chicken breast halves (1-1/2 lb.), pounded to 1/2-inch thickness

2/3 cup  Orange juice

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

3 Tbsp.  Butter or margarine, melted

Heat the oven to 400 degrees..

Here’s how:

ADD hot water to stuffing mix; stir just until moistened.

PLACE chicken in 13×9-inch baking dish. Mix juice, sugar and butter until blended; pour over chicken. Top with stuffing.

BAKE 30 min. or until chicken is done (165ºF).

The orange juice/brown sugar gets nice and thick and coats the chicken…Mmmm..I had seconds.

Enjoy!

Patricia

Apple Danish Tartlets

This past weekend I went to a local orchard with my mom and sister. I came home with lots of apples, pumpkins and other little goodies. So now, of course, some apple recipes are in order! I found this one and it reminded me of the coffee cakes I used to pick up now and then at the grocery store bakery. This was my first homemade pie crust, and I think it came out great!


Pie Crust (you can use 1 premade refrigerated if you want to save time):
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, chilled and cut into one inch pieces
1/8 to 1/4 cup ice water


In a food processor, place the flour, salt, and sugar and process until combined. Add the butter and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal (about 15 seconds). Pour 1/8 cup water in a slow, steady stream, through the feed tube until the dough just holds together when pinched, no more than 30 seconds. If necessary, add more water. Turn the dough onto counter and gather into a ball, then flatten into a disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for about one hour before using.


After the dough has chilled sufficiently, remove from the fridge and place it on a lightly floured surface. Roll the pastry into a 12 inch circle.  Use an over-turned glass (or any circle cutter) to cut out individual crusts, re-rolling dough scraps to use up (I ended up with 12 small circles). 



Heat oven to 375. Spray 12 muffin cups with cooking spray. Brush off any excess flour and press one pastry circle to fit in bottom and up sides of each muffin cup.


Filling:
2 medium apples, peeled, diced (about 2 1/2 cups) I used Honeygold apples
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 8 oz pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 egg

Glaze:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 to 2 tsp milk

Mix apples, brown sugar, flour, lemon juice and cinnamon in a medium bowl until apples are coated. In separate bowl beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla and egg with mixer on medium speed until creamy.  


Spread 2-3 tsp cream mixture in each muffin cup. Top each with one heaping tbsp of apple mixture. Place pan on bottom rack in oven and bake 30 to 35 minutes or until filling is set and crust is light golden brown. Cool on cooling rack about 30 minutes, then refrigerate about 4 hours. 

Just before serving, mix 1/2 cup powdered sugar and 1 tsp milk. Stir in additional milk 1/2 tsp at a time until thin enough to drizzle. Drizzle glaze over tartlets. Store in refrigerator. 

These are sweet, but the cream cheese does tone it down a bit. The original recipe makes one regular sized tart, but I love mini desserts so I modified to individual muffin sized tartlets. I’ve been warned if I’m going to want to have any more for myself I better put them aside now or they will be gone. 🙂

– Jodi