Easy turkey chili

So I know I have not blogged in, oh, forever!? Nursing school really sucks the fun out of life! LOL I kid. I actually love being in nursing school, just doesn’t leave much time for blogging or cooking! Anyway, this turkey chili is adapted from a recipe I found on allrecipes.com. I have made this probably 20 times or more (my way) and it doubles easily and freezes beautifully. I normally make a double batch, freeze half, and we eat the other half. You can spice it up however you like with some cayenne, but my kids don’t like the heat, so I normally don’t add much! This recipe is nice, too, because it can pretty much handle most veggies. I have been known to add carrots, celery, zucchini, etc – anything I have on hand and need to use up! The recipe written below is for one recipe (not the doubled one, just to be clear!).

Another quick note – if I double it, I usually brown the turkey in a separate pan because it makes a lot of liquid/grease and I don’t want that in my chili. Just one pound does not do that usually, but when you bump it to two, yeah…..

Tip: I freeze tomato paste in 1 Tbsp size lumps – freeze them on a plate and then pop them off into a bag. Easy to grab 1 tbsp when you need it for recipes like this!


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Italian-Style Cabbage Stew

As I mentioned earlier this week, I got a gorgeous head of cabbage in my farm bag from Front Porch Pickings. My husband is a good German boy (from Pittsburgh originally) and he loves cabbage!! I normally make haluski or slaw with it, but since it’s been so dreary out, I went looking for a soup recipe to fill our bellies. I found some inspiration online and tweaked some recipes until it fit us just right!

Use your giant soup pot – this makes a TON! I made the mistake of starting with a smaller pot and had to transfer… oops!! This soup is filling and chock full of good for you vegetables. And the calorie count can’t be beat!!

*Leave the cheese out for a dairy-free meal!

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Spicy Sausage and Black-Eyed Pea Chili

Eesh. 4 whole months since I last blogged. Who am I?! The big little girl is at Grandma’s house this week and that allows a little more time in our schedule, so I decided to cook some dinner! Yay! I’ve been sick and needed something spicy to smoke all the germs out and this did the trick. This spicy chili incorporates two types of meat, some gumbo-inspired vegetables, and a Southern twist … black-eyed peas! Super filling, super spicy, and super delicious! Top with your favorite chili toppings – cheese, some onions, or sour cream and serve with cornbread for a fine meal!

One quick food note – if you’re not a connessuer of black-eyed peas (aka you are not from the South!), do not get confused when you go shopping for them. The sell them ‘seasoned’, like the Glory Brand. They are also sold plain:

See!? That doesn’t say anything but ‘black eyed peas’. They’re plain. That’s the kind you want. If you accidentally buy the seasoned kind, it’s ok, you can still use them, but leave the paprika out or you’ll have a giant smoky bowl of chili!

Also, if you’ve never cooked with andouille, do not be afraid!! I bought Aidells brand and they are sold in my store near the hot dogs and kielbasa. They’re fully cooked, so I just quartered them. There are 4 in the pack. You can use all 4 for sure, or save one to fry up with some eggs and potatoes (yum!).

Hope you enjoy!

Meatless Monday – Broccoli Cheese Soup

I’m baaaaaaaaack! Well, maybe, sorta. I know I suck at blogging lately and for that I apologize (Mom, Mary Helen, and anybody else who thought I got stuck in traffic). We have had so many different projects going on in our house and trips, visitors, etc. It’s safe to say summer got the best of me. I’m also currently residing in braces hell!! My mouth is KILLING ME. I’m hoping this latest torture idea that my orthodontist has going on is a short lived one…

So I’m here with a sore mouth and it’s rainy. I felt like I needed broccoli cheese soup. I gathered the ingredients and my husband did the cooking. He’s my hero for today!! He rocked the soup! This soup is not super creamy, but it’s not watery either. It’s a perfect in between consistency – just what you want for dipping in a nice piece of french bread!! I also love that this has tons of broccoli in it and that not even the stems are wasted.  A perfect serving size that everyone in your house is guaranteed to love!

Note: If you don’t want your soup too chunky, you can always put some of the soup into a blender and puree until smoothe. Do this after the 15 minutes simmer and return it to the pan before you put the milk or the florets in. I wouldn’t do more than half of the mix in the blender, though.


Broccoli Cheese Soup

Adapted from Epicurious
Yield: 6 servings (about 1 2/3 cup each)

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, room temperature, divided
2 pounds fresh broccoli, stems and florets separated and chopped into bite-size pieces
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon
6 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup milk
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 cups grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese, divided

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in heavy medium pot over medium-high heat. Add broccoli stems and onion; sauté until onion is translucent, about 6 minutes. Add garlic and tarragon; sauté 1 minute. Add broth; bring to boil. Simmer uncovered until broccoli is tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in milk.

Mix remaining 3 tablespoons butter with flour in small bowl to make paste. Whisk paste into soup. Add broccoli florets. Simmer until soup thickens and florets are tender, stirring frequently, about 7 to 10 minutes. Stir in 1 1/2 cups cheese.

Divide soup into 6 bowls and sprinkle remaining cheddar cheese evenly over the top of each bowl. Enjoy!!

(55) Hearty Beef and Tomato Stew

Brace face strikes again! I thought this would be soft enough, but I underestimated the joy of new braces! Soooooooooo, I didnt really eat this, which makes me sad! But my husband and daughter both sucked it down, so I’d say it was a hit. Not hard to make, just a little time consuming to get everything chopped. I’d make this again! (And sorry, no picture on this one…)


Hearty Beef and Tomato Stew

Source: Cooking Light, October 2006
Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 1/2 cups stew and 1 tablespoon parsley)

The ingredient list may look lengthy, but this recipe involves mostly measuring and adding ingredients to the pot to simmer. To trim prep time, look for prechopped onions in the produce aisle. Serve with crusty slices of a baguette. A double-dose of lycopene comes with tomato paste and canned tomatoes.

2 teaspoons olive oil
2 pounds sirloin steak, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 cup finely chopped onion (about 1 medium)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 1/2 cups fat-free, less-sodium beef broth
4 cups cubed red potato (1 1/2 pounds)
2 cups sliced carrot
3/4 cup pinot noir or other spicy dry red wine
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 (16-ounce) package frozen pearl onions
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, undrained
1 rosemary sprig
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add beef; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently. Remove beef from pan, reserving 1 tablespoon of drippings in pan. Add onion and garlic to pan; sauté 2 minutes or until onion begins to brown. Add tomato paste; cook 1 minute, stirring frequently. Add broth; bring to a boil. Return meat to pan. Add potato and next 7 ingredients (through bay leaf); bring to a simmer. Cover and cook 1 hour and 15 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally. Discard rosemary and bay leaf. Stir in salt and pepper. Top with parsley.

CALORIES 329 (21% from fat); FAT 7.5g (sat 2.6g,mono 3.3g,poly 0.4g); IRON 4.3mg; CHOLESTEROL 51mg; CALCIUM 93mg; CARBOHYDRATE 33.3g; SODIUM 630mg; PROTEIN 31.1g; FIBER 4.1g

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