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Spicy Spaghetti Bake & One Lovely Blog Award

15 Jun

I have two very important rules to making spaghetti.

  1. Turn on Frank Sinatra Pandora
  2. Keep a never empty glass of wine by your side

How could you go wrong? So instead of the classic spaghetti this time around I went for a spicy, Mexican flare. With salsa, green chiles, and loads of cheese.. it was fantastic (and I dare say I prefer it over regular spaghetti bake).

Spicy Spaghetti 3

For the spaghetti:

  • 1 package (16 oz) whole wheat spaghetti
  • 1 pound ground turkey (or beef)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 jar (24 oz) salsa
  • 1 jar green chiles
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 block pepper jack cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups (16 oz) mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups (16 oz) white American cheese, shredded
  • crushed tortilla chips

Cook spaghetti according to package directions. In the mean time, cook turkey, onion, and pepper in a large skillet until no longer pink. Stir in salsa, chilies, red pepper flakes and cayenne.

In a large bowl whisk egg and butter. Drain spaghetti and add to egg mixture, tossing to coat.

In a greased baking dish place half of the spaghetti mixture. Top with half the meat mixture and half the pepper jack and mozzarella. Repeat layers topping with crushed tortillas and white American cheese. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 35-45 minutes. Remove foil and bake additional 5-10 minutes or until cheese begins to brown.

Seriously, I love this dish. Next time I believe I’ll add jalapenos to the mix. If you have a difficult time finding white American cheese, check the deli section. I adapted my recipe from Taste of Home.

On another note, a big thank you to Sharing Me, Myself and I for the One Lovely Blog Award! It requires that I tell 7 things about myself and pass on the award as well.

  1. I love nothing more than a good book. Right now the Dark Tower series by Stephen King.
  2. I also enjoy playing video games (currently waiting for Skyrim DLC)
  3. I was born a blonde, but have always wanted black hair.
  4. I’d love to win the lottery and spend my life traveling.
  5. Speaking of traveling, I spent a week in Ireland a few summers back and LOVED it.
  6. I love anything from the 20’s era.
  7. My taste in music is very diverse, but I love a good jazz or classical piece.

I chose to pass this award on to these 5 blogs (in alphabetical order).

Sweet & Savory Chicken Salad

14 May

For starters, Happy (belated) Mother’s Day to all you special women out there! Life without my mom would be unfathomable, for she’s my best friend, my guiding light, and my heart. So when you read this mom, know that I love you (in case I don’t say it enough).

Mom and I

With that being said, friday night, as an early mother’s day gift, I cooked my mom one of her favorite meals.. Chicken Piccata. With it being just the two of us, you can imagine the amount of chicken leftover. Instead of freezing and forgetting about it, I decided to pan sear the remaining chicken, forcing myself to later make use of it. While scrounging around for lunch today, I remembered my pre-cooked chicken and turned it into these two recipes for chicken salad. Warning: I measured almost nothing out so these recipes are a “make it your own” sorta deal.

Sweet Chicken Salad

For the Sweet Chicken Salad:

Shredded chicken

Light mayo

Finely chopped sweet apples

Finely chopped dried mango

Finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Unsweetened shredded coconut

Dash of celery salt

Combine all of your ingredients, using as much or as little as desired. Other additions could include raisins, chopped cherries, or bacon.

Savory Chicken Salad 2

For the Savory Chicken Salad:

Shredded chicken

Herb Greek yogurt (recipe follows)

Finely chopped green bell pepper

Parmesan cheese

Combine ingredients usingĀ  measurements to suit your tastes. Other bell peppers, feta cheese, or mini pepperonis could also be included.

For the Herb Greek yogurt:

For every 1 tablespoon of nonfat plain Greek yogurt, add 1/8 teaspoon each celery salt, rosemary, basil, and chives. Refrigerate at least an hour to allow the flavors to meld.

Recipes for chicken salad are so versatile, and I enjoyed these both! They can easily be served as a meal on a bed of lettuce, atop a croissant, or in a wrap. For an easy appetizer, ball the chicken salad with a melon scoop or mini ice cream scoop and top on crackers or Melba toast.

Chicken Sriracha Roll-ups

18 Apr

I have a wonderful boyfriend, named Adam, and I love him to death. But, he has a few flaws. For starters, he won’t eat anything spicy and/or hot. It’s crazy, I know. Second, he claims to hate mayo, sour cream, cream cheese.. you get the point. I tend to sneak these ingredients into my cooking and usually don’t receive too many complaints. But nonetheless, on nights like tonight when he’s working and I’m home alone, I take my chance to cook foods I normally wouldn’t.

These chicken sriracha roll-ups I whipped up tonight with ingredients lying around the apartment. The chicken is cooked in taco seasoning then rolled into a sheet of crescent dough along with cheese and a wonderful Sriracha-Mayo recipe I found on WhiteOnRiceCouple.

For the chicken:

3-4 chicken tenderloins

1 taco seasoning packet

1 tsp onion powder

1 cup water

tube of crescent dough

shredded cheese of your choice

For the Sriracha-Mayo

3 Tbs mayonnaise

1 Tbs + 1 tsp Sriracha

1 tsp lime juice

Get out your handy crockpot and combine the taco seasoning, onion powder, and water making sure they’re well mixed. Add in the chicken and cook on high 4-5 hours or low 6-8 hours, or until the chicken falls apart when forked. For the Sriracha-Mayo, combine the three ingredients in a bowl and refrigerate until you’re ready to assemble the chicken rolls.

Once chicken is cooked, remove from the crockpot and shred with a fork. Add as much of the juice it was cooking in as desired for added flavor. Next, roll out your crescent dough into a sheet. Pinch together the perforations to ensure there are no gaps in the dough. Flip and do the same to the other side. Make sure to do this quickly so the dough doesn’t become too soft. Once done, spread dough with a layer of the Sriracha-Mayo (I used what was remaining as a dip), top with a thin layer of chicken and a thin layer of cheese. Gently, roll the dough into a log shape and place in the freezer for 30-45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Once dough is chilled it should be much easier to slice. Cut it into approximately 1 inch pieces and place on a greased cookie sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until dough begins to turn golden-brown. Then, enjoy!

I thought these had a wonderful flavor! This chicken could easily be used for tacos, wraps, or casseroles. The Sriracha-Mayo would also go great on sandwiches and for a lighter version you could probably substitute nonfat, plain yogurt for the mayonnaise.

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