Sunday, November 10, 2013

Crock pot beef and broccoli


This facebook post:!/photo.php?fbid=1430850017135418&id=1429031610650592&set=a.1429035907316829.1073741828.1429031610650592&source=46&__user=643316460

1 pound boneless beef chuck roast, sliced into thin strips
1 cup beef consumme
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup brown sugar 

1 tablespoon sesame oil 

3 garlic cloves, minced 

2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons sauce from the crock pot after being cooked
Fresh broccoli florets (as many as desired)
Hot cooked rice

1. Place beef in a crock pot.
2. In a small bowl, combine consomme, soy sauce, brown sugar, oil, and garlic. Pour over beef. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
3. In a cup, stir cornstarch and sauce from the crock pot until smooth. Add to crock pot. Stir well to combine.
4. Add broccoli to the crock pot. Stir to combine.
5. Cover and cook an additional 30 minutes on high (the sauce has to boil for it to thicken).
6. Serve over hot cooked rice. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013


From: This is Pioneer Woman's breakfast recipe for Migas, though we have only ever had it for dinner.


4 whole Corn Tortillas
1 whole Jalapeno, Seeds And Membranes Removed, Finely Diced
4 whole Plum Tomatoes, Roughly Chopped
1 whole Green Pepper, Roughly Chopped
1 whole Red Bell Pepper, Roughly Chopped
1 whole Medium Onion, Chopped
12 whole Large Eggs
1 cups Cotija Cheese, Grated (may Use Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Etc.)
1/3 cup Cilantro, Chopped
1 Tablespoon Butter
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1/4 cup half-and-half

How to:  

Just click here. 

Monday, September 23, 2013


What is it?

Triscuit crackers, cheddar cheese slices, homemade cheese chucks and grapes.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Arroz Con Leche

From: This recipe came straight from the mouth of my Costa Rican mother-in-law. I jotted it down on paper, sitting in her kitchen, while she threw in this ingredient and that. I've included my notes in parentheses in Spanish as I wrote them in 2002. It brings such sweet memories! 


2 cups cooked white rice or 1 cup of raw rice  (2 tazas de arroz)
1 15 oz can of condensed milk (1 lata grande de leche condensada.)
1 15 oz can of evaporated milk (1 lata grande de leche evaporada)
2 cups of whole milk (2 tazas de leche)
1 cup of sugar (1 taza de azúcar)
1 cinnamon stick (1 sobre pequeño de canela en astilla)
1 Tbsp of cloves (1 sobre pequeño de clavos de olor)
1 box of raisins (optional) (1 cajita de pasas (opcional))
1/2 stick of butter (1/2 barra de margarina)
1 tsp of lemon peel (1 cucharadita de ralladura de limon)
How to: 

Cook the rice over a low flame in 2 cups water with cinnamon and cloves. Cook it SLOWLY - up to an hour. Then add whole milk and continue to cook, stirring frequently to prevent burning or drying out, over a low flame. If it gets too dry, add more milk. Then remove it from the flame for 2-3 minutes to keep it from sticking. Add sugar and cook for 10 more minutes. Add lemon, condensed milk and evaporated milk and mix it well. Taste it and decide if it needs more milk or sugar. Keep cooking for 15 more minutes, stirring continuously. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Serve hot or refrigerate and serve cold. 

(Ponga el arroz a reposar por 1 hora en agua con la canela y los clavos de olor.
Luego agregue las tazas de leche y ponga a cocinar por 1/2 hora a fuego no muy alto, no deje que el arroz se seque (si esto sucede agrega más leche o agua). Remueva cada dos o tres minutos para que no se pegue.
Agregue el azúcar y revuelva nuevamente. Cocine por unos 10 minutos más.
Agregue la ralladura de limon, la leche condensada y la evaporada. Revuelva muy bien. Pruebe como esta de azúcar, si tiene mucha azúcar agregue leche.
Continúe cocinando por unos 15 minutos sin descuidarlo y siempre revolviendo cada 2 a 3 minutos.
Después de 15 minutos déjelo reposar por unos 5-10 minutos. )

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Challa Bread Braids

From: My friend, Sarah Valente.


3.5 cups warm water
4 tsp yeast
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup melted butter
6 eggs
6+ cups flour

How to:  

Combine yeast and warm water. Add the sugar.  It should bubble right away. Add the rest of the ingredients in order, mixing each ingredient in thoroughly as you go. When the dough is formed but not too sticky (add more flour if necessary), allow it to rise for 30 min. Then form into 4 equal parts for the loaves.  Break each 1/4th into 3 equal parts to braid into a loaf.  Then bake for 20-25 minutes at 360°F.

Homemade Bread by Hand

From: My friend, Sarah Valente.


3.5 cups warm water
4 tsp yeast
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil
6 c flour


How to:  

Combine yeast and warm water. Add the rest of the ingredients in order, mixing each ingredient in thoroughly as you go. When the dough is formed but not too sticky, allow it to rise for 30 min. Then form into 4 equal parts for the loaves.  Form into a loaf, place in the baking pan and allow to rise another 20-30 minutes.  Then bake for 20-25 minutes at 360°F.

Beef Brisket or Roast

From: I started with this recipe and tweaked it according to what was in my kitchen.  :)


4 lbs. beef brisket (NOT corned) (you can also use a beef pot roast)
4 cloves minced garlic, or 1 Tbsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp. ketchup
1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 onions, thinly sliced

For gravy: 
2 Tbsp. flour
1/3 cup water

How to:  

Place onions in bottom of slow cooker, then place brisket, fat side up, on top of onions. Sprinkle garlic, salt and pepper on top. Combine ketchup, vinegar, and brown sugar in small bowl and then rub into beef. Add enough water to coat the bottom of the cooker. Cover slower cooker and cook on low for 8-10 hours.

For gravy, remove brisket from the slow cooker place on serving plate, and cover tightly with foil. Turn crockpot temperature to High. Mix flour with 1/3 cup water, add to crockpot, and bring to a boil, stirring frequently with wire whisk. Makes 16 servings.

Serve over rice or make a sandwich on toasted bread, with butter, mustard, mayo, and barbeque sauce.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Broccoli Chicken Casserole

From: I grew up eating this recipe... It was my Mom's favorite way to get us to eat broccoli!  Yumm!!


1 lbs cooked broccoli
12 oz can chicken, or precooked chicken chunks
2 eggs
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/4 c chopped onion
1 c cheddar cheese
3/4 c mayonnaise
cheddar cheese Doritos

How to:  

Mix all of the ingredients in a bowl except the Doritos.  Pour it all into a lightly greased casserole dish and bake at  350° F, covered, until bubbly (about 30 minutes). You can serve it as is - my favorite way to eat it as a dip for Doritos.  Or you can pull it out of the oven and top it with Doritos and bake it for another 5 minutes uncovered and serve it as a casserole. Either way, it's yummy!!

Chicken Parmesan

From: This recipe came out of a fabulous new cook book that my mom and I have been cooking out of lately.

Anything with the words ”Comfort Food,” in the title immediately got my attention!  You can buy it right here.


1 extra large egg
2 cups panko bread crumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp olive oil
1tsp Italian seasoning
salt and pepper to taste
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/2 inch thickness (although I did not pound mine. I did slice the chicken into half inch thickness)
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 1/2 cups marinara sauce:
You'll need:
1 (28 oz) can of diced tomatoes, liquid discarded
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp garlic powder OR 1 fresh diced garlic
1/4-1/8 cup diced onions OR 1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp basil
Combine all the ingredients and simmer in a saucepan.  
How to:  

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Beat an egg in a shallow dish.  In a separate shallow dish (a pie pan is recommended), combine the bread crumbs, Parmesan, olive oil, Italian seasoning and a few generous pinches of salt and black pepper.

Dip each piece of chicken into the egg, then into the bread crumbs, using your fingers to press the crumbs into the chicken.  Place the chicken breasts on a baking sheet or roasting pan and bake in the oven on the middle rack for about 2 minutes, until the chicken is firm to the touch and the bread crumbs are golden brown.

Remove the chicken from the oven and set the oven to broil.  Cover each piece of chicken with a good ladle of tomato sauce and a handful of mozzarrella.  Then put the pan back in the oven on the middle rack and broil for about 3 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbling.

Side notes: Serve over rice or cooked spinach with extra tomato sauce.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Homemade Orange Juice

From: My husband grew up with a lemon tree in his backyard, and the year I lived in Costa Rica, he made homemade lemonade all the time. I used the same basic combination of ingredients to make orange juice with fresh oranges.


6 cups fresh squeezed juice from oranges
2 cups cold water
6 Tbsp sugar

How to:

Combine ingredients and mix well. Refrigerate.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Natural Healing: Heartburn

From: With the onset of my 2nd pregnancy and a budding friendship with a lovely lady named Beth, I'm becoming more and more interested in natural healing alternatives for the common over-the-counter drug.


See below.

How to:  

The following are great home remedies for heartburn:

An 8 oz glass of warm soy milk, almond milk or rice milk.
Acid-ease (or other homeopathic formula from health food store)
Calcium/magnesium/potassium in doses of 300 mg/150 mg/100 mg.
Chamomile tea.
Eat more raw vegetables.
Raw apple cider vinegar: 1 Tbsp in glass of water.
Fresh papaya or pineapple.
Eliminate caffeine from your diet.

***Neither Beth nor I are licensed health care professionals.  Be sure to seek the medical advice of a health professional before starting any new therapy or if symptoms worsen.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Natural Healing: Sinus Congestion

From: With the onset of my 2nd pregnancy and a budding friendship with a lovely lady named Beth, I'm becoming more and more interested in natural healing alternatives for the common over-the-counter drug. Between my friend Sarah, her cousin Beth, and the good 'ol Wahlgreen's sinus wash ingredients list, I have discovered two great home remedies for sinus congestion.


eucalyptus oil
rosemary oil
lemon oil
peppermint oil
thyme oil
tea tree oil
iodine free salt
baking soda

How to:  

Steam therapy: Boil water. Put drops of eucalyptus (2), lemon (1), rosemary (3) in a big bowl. You can also add peppermint, thyme, and tea tree oils. Pour boiling water over it. Quickly cover your head and bowl with a towel. Stay there and breathe the steam in until it stops steaming.

Sinus wash: Fill a netti pot with hot water. Netti pots can be purchased at a drug store.  They often come with a sinus wash packet, which has a combination of iodine free salt and baking soda in it.  When you run out of those packets, you can dissolve 1 tsp iodine free salt and 1/3 tsp baking soda in the netti pot. Over a sink or in the shower, lean over so your head is completely horizontal, with your right ear to the ceiling.  Slowly place the tip of the netti pot over your right nostril and allow the liquid to flow through your sinuses, out the left nostril.  Adjust your head position so the liquid does not flow out of your mouth or down your throat.  Breathe through your mouth.  Repeat on the other side.  You may practice using only lukewarm water ahead of time, to get the hang of it.  Sometimes the salt and baking soda mix burn, and you may need to stop and sneeze in the middle of it.  This means it's working! Repeat as often as desired, up to every couple of hours. As an added bonus, the solution flowing over your nostrils will help to cure the raw, dry skin that's irritated from blowing your nose so often!

***Neither Beth, Sarah, nor myself are licensed health care professionals.  Be sure to seek the medical advice of a health professional before starting any new therapy or if symptoms worsen.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Creamy Wild Rice Soup

From: A dear friend, Ashley Martin, over at Adventures in Twinderland, shared this recipe with me.  Wow is it deeeeee-licious!!


1/2 or 1 large onion minced
6 garlic cloves or 1 Tbsp dried minced garlic
diced celery (to your liking - I used about a cup)
sliced carrots (to your liking - I used about 1 1/2 cups)
4 Tbsp butter (I may have used a whole butter stick. ;)  )
1 cup wild rice
1 cup of long grain rice
1/2 cup of flour
6 cups chicken stock or water with bullion (I used 5 cups of water with 6 cubes of bullion so it would have lots of flavor but be more like rice and less like soup - only because I was on a soup fettish and cooked soup 4 times in a week)
chicken or turkey cooked (optional)
crumbled cooked turkey bacon (half of a package)
salt and pepper to taste
2/3 cup cream
Parmesan cheese to taste

How to:  

Mince the onion, garlic, celery, and carrots and saute with half of the butter until it's softened and cooked through.

Then melt in the rest of the butter. Add 1 cup of wild rice and 1 cup of long grain rice and cook for a few minutes. Then add 1/2 a cup of flour and mix in, let it cook for a few minutes. Next, add in the chicken stock or water with bouillon and put a lid on the pot, let it simmer for about half an hour or until the rice is cooked and tender (but obviously wild rice still has some crunch to it).

If you want to add pre-cooked chicken or turkey, now is the time to add it along with the crumbled bacon. At this point, I taste-tested and was so in love with the taste that I didn't even add the rest of the ingredients, plus it's right after the holidays and I'm trying to eat healthier.  Ha!

But this would also be delicious:  Ashley says to mix in about 2/3 a cup of cream, and then add Parmesan, salt and freshly grated pepper to taste. Add extra chicken bouillon if needed but it you probably don't need it. Enjoy!  I sure did!