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French Bread Pizza — August 31, 2013

French Bread Pizza

Huskers Game Day! It doesn’t get any better than this. We love the summer time, but that means there are no sports on that we like. Being from Nebraska we live for Huskers football. Although we are so sad we can’t be in Lincoln, NE for the game we are going to a Husker watch bar and hope to be surrounded by the best fans in the nation. As I’m sitting here twiddling my thumbs waiting until it’s time to leave for the bar I decided I would write a quick blog. I haven’t been cooking much lately due to be so busy, but I did find one night this week to cook and CLEAN!

This was a very easy meal and I was able to change it up to satisfy each of me and Scotty’s completely different ways of eating. I put turkey pepperoni and turkey sausage on the whole thing and then mushrooms and black olives on mine and green chilies on Scotty’s. I then sprinkled the whole thing with Italian Seasoning. Getting a yummy meal in about 10 minutes it’s good enough for me. Happy Eating!

French Bread Pizza

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French Bread Pizza

Recipe thanks to What’s Cooking with Ruthie

2 loaves of French Bread

1 jar of pizza sauce

Any toppings your family likes: Pepperoni, Canadian Bacon, green peppers, onion, pineapple, mushrooms, olives,  tomatoes, etc

2 C  Mozzarella Cheese shredded

Pre-heat oven to 500 degrees. Cut the french bread in half length wise, put the halves on a cookie sheet open faced, spread a 1/4 of the jar on each side.  Put on your favorite toppings, and top each half with 1/2 C cheese.  Prepare and bake two halves at time and repeat.  Bake for 5-7 minutes till the cheese is melted and slightly browned.  Cut into 2 inch wide strips and serve.

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Absent from blogging, but still cooking — August 24, 2013

Absent from blogging, but still cooking

It has been a long time since I have been on here to share my food adventures. I accepted a first grade teaching job and that has pretty much consumed my every waking hour for the last three weeks. I have my work cut out for me with these kiddos, but I’m really happy with how the year has been going so far. I have a bunch of recipes to put on here and I’m going to just put them all on one post.

Scotty turned 26 earlier this month and unfortunately I had to work in my classroom the whole day. He was so understanding of me working his entire birthday. I tried to make it as special as I could for the time I was with him. I made him breakfast, a cookie cake, and I got him copper mugs to have moscow mules.

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Cake Batter Pancakes

Recipe thanks to How Sweet it is

makes about 12 pancakes

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

2/3 cup yellow cake mix

1 tablespoon sugar

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

pinch of salt

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1-2 cups milk (I used vanilla almond milk)

assorted sprinkles

Directions:

Combine flour, cake mix, baking powder, sugar and salt in a bowl and mix.

Add 1 cup of milk, egg and vanilla extract and stir until smooth.

You want the batter to look like regular pancake batter; not too thin, not too thick. This will vary greatly on the brand of cake mix you use.

Start with 1 cup of milk and add more if needed. I suggest a small taste test as well to see if the pancakes are flavored enough.

Preheat a skillet on medium heat. Fold desired amount of sprinkles into batter. Pour batter in 1/4 cup measurements onto skillet and let cook until bubbles form on top, about 2-3 minutes. Flip and cook for 1 minute more. Serve with vanilla glaze.

Glaze

1 cup powdered sugar

1/2 tablespoon milk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

assorted sprinkles

Mix milk, extract and powdered sugar until glaze forms. You may need to add a little more sugar or water/milk to reach desired consistency. Mix into glaze and drizzle on pancakes.

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

Recipe thanks to Life, Love, and Sugar

Yield: one 8 or 9-inch cookie cake

Ingredients:

3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

3/4 cup dark brown sugar

1/4 cup sugar

1 egg

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp cornstarch

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 1/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips OR about 1 cup of chocolate chunks

Directions:

Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes.

Mix in egg and vanilla extract.

With the mixer on low speed, add flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt.

Stir in chocolate chips. Dough will be thick.

Chill for at least 30 minutes or overnight.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place parchment paper into the bottom of your cake pan to help the cookie not stick.

Spread the dough out into the cake pan. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the edges are slightly golden.

Remove from oven and let cool for a couple minutes on the cookie sheet, then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.

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Moscow Mule

Ingredients:

1 ¼ oz. Vodka

3 oz Ginger Beer

1 tsp. sugar syrup

¼ oz lime juice

1 sprig mint

1 slice lime

Directions:

In a copper mug, pour vodka over ice.

Add sugar syrup and lime juice.

Top with ginger beer and stir.

Garnish with mint sprig and lime slice.

Yield Serves 6

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Pasta with Fresh Tomato Sauce

Ingredients

Recipe thanks to Martha Stewart

2 1/4 pounds unrefrigerated ripe tomatoes (preferably plum)

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves

1 tablespoon flat-leaf parsley

1 tablespoon chopped garlic (from 2 garlic cloves), plus more if desired

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

1 pound spaghetti or spaghettini

Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)

Directions:

Finely chop tomatoes, basil, parsley, and garlic, and mix together with oil (or pulse ingredients, including oil, in a food processor to blend).

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta, and cook until al dente. Drain pasta, and toss it in a serving bowl with the raw sauce. Transfer to 6 shallow bowls, and drizzle with oil. Serve with cheese.

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Teriyaki Chicken

Recipe thanks to The Recipe Critic

Ingredients:
12 boneless skinless chicken thighs (about 3 pounds) (I used 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts)
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup soy sauce
6 tablespoons cider vinegar
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
4 1/2 teaspoons cold water
Hot cooked long grain rice

Directions:

Place chicken in a 4 qt. slow cooker.

In a large bowl, combine the sugar, soy sauce, cider vinegar, ginger, garlic and pepper.  Pour over chicken.

Cover and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours or until chicken is tender.

Remove chicken to a serving platter; keep warm.

Skim fat from cooking liquid.

Place liquid in a saucepan and bring to a boil.

Combine cornstarch and water until smooth.

Gradually stir into liquid and stir until sauce is thickend.

Serve with chicken and rice.

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Fusilli Pizza

Makes: 4 servings

Ingredients:
Butter, for greasing
14 ounces tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Pinch of dried oregano
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
12 ounces fusilli or other short pasta
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 ½ ounces diced mozzarella cheese
Salt

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease an ovenproof dish with butter.

Process the tomatoes to a purée in a food processor or blender.

Heat the oil in a pan.

Add the puréed tomatoes and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 10-15 minutes until thickened.

Stir in the oregano and basil and remove from the heat.

Cook the pasta in plenty of salted boiling water until al dente. Drain, return to the pan, and pour the sauce over.

Sprinkle with the Parmesan and toss well to mix.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared dish, top with the diced mozzarella, and drizzle with oil.

Bake for about 10 minutes until the mozzarella starts to melt.

Serve immediately straight from the dish.

Jamaican Jerk Salmon with Mango Pineapple Salsa — August 5, 2013

Jamaican Jerk Salmon with Mango Pineapple Salsa

Today was my first day working in my classroom to get it ready for the new year. It is a mess and I have a LONG ways to go, but I’m excited for the new adventure. I ended up staying at the school longer than I intended and by the time I left I was not too thrilled about going to get groceries. The frozen pizza was calling my name at home. After having a long debate in my head about what to do I told myself I wasn’t going to stop making dinners at night just because I’m working now. I did it when I taught my first year and I’m going to do it this year.

This salmon smelled delicious while it was cooking on the stove. It seemed as if I would get a new spice smell every time I walked past it. The salsa was such a great addition to it. I wasn’t a huge fan of the black beans in this particular salsa, but the pineapples were perfect. Happy Eating!

Jamaican Jerk Salmon with Mango Pineapple Salsa

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Jamaican Jerk Salmon with Mango Pineapple Salsa

Recipe thanks to Epicurious

Yield: Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

2 mangoes, peeled and diced

1/2 pineapple, cored and diced

1 cup rinsed and drained canned black beans

3/4 cup finely chopped red onion

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

3/4 teaspoon salt, divided

1 teaspoon ground allspice

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

4 salmon fillets (5 ounces each), skin on

1 teaspoon olive oil

Direction:

Combine mangoes, pineapple, black beans, onion, cilantro and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a bowl.

Combine remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, allspice, cumin, thyme, cayenne and cinnamon in another bowl; rub over both sides of each fillet.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat; cook salmon until cooked through, 5 minutes per side. Serve with salsa.

First Year Anniversary Gift —

First Year Anniversary Gift

Scotty and I celebrated our one year anniversary yesterday. We were so tired and sick of alcohol from our Vegas weekend that we didn’t have the most romantic night, but it was perfect for us. We both got take out from the restaurant of our choice, drank milk (not champagne) out of our champagne glasses and watched our wedding video. We were so full afterwards so we saved our cake until tonight. Delicious by the way! We also gave each other our “paper” gifts. Scotty got me concert tickets to John Mayer!!

I wrote 200 reasons why I love him on pieces of paper, crumpled them up and filled up the fit bag. I also got him a camelback since the paper didn’t cost anything. He actually really liked it and read every single reasons, and kept them!

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Crock Pot Italian Sloppy Joes — August 4, 2013

Crock Pot Italian Sloppy Joes

This meal was from last week, but we have been on vacation all weekend so I’m just now posting it. I originally made this meal last Wednesday so that we could eat it right after softball and we wouldn’t be tempted to go out to eat and spend money. HOWEVER….. we lost our game in softball and it’s tradition to go out to eat afterwards so it was only appropriate to join along. We had these the next day for lunch instead. They saved very nicely and it was nice to have something quick to warm up before we left for Vegas. They didn’t really taste like the traditional sloppy joes, but they definitely were sloppy. This would actually be really good atop pasta noodles. Happy Eating!

Crock Pot Italian Sloppy Joes

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Crock Pot Italian Sloppy Joes

Recipe thanks to Skinny Taste

Ingredients:

1 lb Italian turkey sausage, removed from casing

1/2 cup chopped onions

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 red bell pepper, chopped in 1/2-inch pieces

1 green bell pepper, chopped in 1/2-inch pieces

1 1/3 cups crushed tomatoes (Tutorosso)

1/2 tsp dried rosemary

salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste

6 whole wheat 100 calorie potato rolls**

6 slices reduced fat provolone (Sargento)

1 cup baby spinach

Directions:

In a medium non-stick skillet, cook the sausage over medium-high heat, breaking up as it cooks into small bits until cooked through, about 5-6 minutes.

Add onions and garlic, and cook another 2 minutes.

Transfer to the slow cooker and add the bell peppers, crushed tomatoes, rosemary and fresh cracked pepper.
Cover and cook on low 4 hours. Makes 3 1/2 cups.

To serve, place heaping 1/2 cup of meat on a roll and if desired, top with cheese and baby spinach.

Makes 6 servings.

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