Baked Chicken Taquitos

June 17, 2009 at 8:21 pm | Posted in appetizer, Cheese, Chicken, football food, Mexican food | 3 Comments

We pretty much love any variation of any type of Mexican food in our house.  I really think I could eat it every single night and I know Tommy could as well.  Tommy loves the chicken taquitos at our favorite local Mexican restaurant so I thought I would try these out.  I found this recipe on My Kitchen Cafe, one of my absolute favorite blogs.  It looked easy and tasty!  I served these with light sour cream, fresh salsa, and multi grain chips.  YUM!

Recipe from My Kitchen Cafe

Makes 14-16 taquitos as is – I halved this for just Tommy and I and it turned out great

Ingredients

4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup green salsa
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 green onion, sliced finely (white and green parts to equal about 2 tablespoons)
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 cup grated monterey jack cheese (use pepperjack if you like a little heat)

small yellow or white corn tortillas
kosher salt
cooking spray

Directions

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly coat with cooking spray.

In a medium-sized bowl, mix softened cream cheese, green salsa, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, onion powder and garlic powder. Stir to combine and then add cilantro and green onions. Add chicken and cheese and combine well.

You can prepare this step ahead of time. Just keep the mixture in the fridge.

Working with a few tortillas at a time, place 3-4 between two damp paper towels and microwave for 30-45 seconds, until tortillas are soft and pliable and don’t crack while rolling. Place 2-3 tablespoons of the chicken mixture on the lower third of a soft tortilla, keeping it about 1/2 inch from the edges. Then roll it up as tight as you can.

Place filled taquitos seam side down on the baking sheet, making sure they don’t touch each other. When ready to bake, spray the tops lightly with cooking spray or an oil mister and lightly sprinkle some kosher (coarse) salt on top.

Place pan in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until crisp and the ends start to get golden brown. (Mine only took about 10 minutes so you might want to watch this timing depending on your oven). Serve immediately. Taquitos can be dipped in in salsa, sour cream, guacamole, or any other combination you can dream up.

Pig Rating:  The Pig really really liked these and said these would be a great addition to our dinner rotation.  He said a lot of the things that we make that are Mexican taste very similar but that these had a different kick to them that was great.

Mrs. Pig Rating:  I loved these little rolls of chicken Mexican goodness!  I am definitely making these again.  I dipped mine in salsa and they were so good.  I highly recommend these for a weeknight dinner.  Easy to prepare and even kids would like them.

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“World’s Best Lasagna”

December 1, 2008 at 1:08 am | Posted in Cheese, pasta, sauce, slow cooker, Turkey | 2 Comments

Italian food is my absolute favorite.  I could eat it every single day.  I probably wouldn’t be a size 4 if I did that though huh?  There are definitely times when I splurge on something that sounds amazing and I don’t care how many calories are in it.  I have seen this recipe on allrecipes.com for “World’s Best Lasagna” for awhile now but I never got around to making it.  I always just kind of throw a bunch of stuff together normally when I make lasagna and it is always good but I wanted to try something new.  Last weekend we decorated the Christmas tree and I wanted something yummy and comfort food like for the cold evening so I decided to make this finally. 

Ingredients (Don’t be scared off by the long list…)

  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage
  • 3/4 pound lean ground beef (I used ground turkey)
  • 1/2 cup minced onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
  • 2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 12 lasagna noodles
  • 16 ounces ricotta cheese (I omitted)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. In a Dutch oven (I used my crock pot as I don’t have a dutch oven…hoping for one for Christmas!!), cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  4. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Pig Rating:  The Pig liked this but he said it was almost too sweet for him.  He said he likes the other lasagna that I make better.  He ate leftovers many times though so it must not have been TOO bad…  🙂

Mrs. Pig Rating:  I thought this was excellent!  I loved the sauce – it absolutely made the dish.  This is something that I will definitely make again – would be especially good for a carry in dinner!

Little Pig’s Rating:  Sheridan loved this!  She kept saying how good it was and she had seconds.  YAY for her finally starting to try new things!!!  Will liked it as well.  His favorite thing of mine is baked ziti though so he still likes that better.  🙂

My First “Dinner Party”

October 13, 2008 at 12:56 am | Posted in appetizer, Cakes, Cheese, Dessert, Fun, Menus, pasta, pizza, wine | 11 Comments

I use the term “dinner party” loosely because really it was me and two of my awesome co-workers who also happen to be very good friends of mine.  I decided I wanted to have them over for dinner so we turned it into a fun event – we all dressed up and made it a true “girls night” and had waaaaaay too much to drink.  And by that I mean that I had a bottle and a half of wine.  On a Thursday night.  I felt miserable on Friday.  Stupid, stupid.  HOwever, we had an absolute blast!!!  We are already planning our next one – Asian inspired food with a prom night theme…HA!

Here was my menu:

Appetizers:

Bruschetta with Fresh Marinated Mozzarella

Garlic Bread
Port Wine Cheese Ball with crackers

Dinner:
Stuffed Shells
Angel Hair Pasta with Fresh Pesto (recipe to follow)
Margherita Pizza (recipe to follow)

Dessert:
Chocolate Lasagna
Assorted Milano cookies (I couldn’t help it…I adore them!!!)

Drinks:

Gewurtztraminer
Pinot Grigio
Shiraz

 

Oh yeah, did I mention that I wore my wedding dress?  Yeah, I drink wine in it often so I decided it would be a riot to answer the door in it with an apron on.  My friends loved it!  HA!  That’s right.  I’m insane.  You know you love me.  : )

Bruschetta with Marinated Fresh Mozzarella

October 13, 2008 at 12:39 am | Posted in appetizer, Cheese | 1 Comment

My friend Andrea went to this fab cooking class and one night they had an Italian/Tuscan theme.  She made some things that sounded phenomenal and I knew that I had to try them.  I decided to have a little dinner party while Tommy was out of town this past week and it was the perfect time to try them out.  My dinner party had an Italian theme – I mean hey, let’s face it.  What theme goes better with my favorite thing – WINE! – than that?!  Picture of the dinner party to follow but let’s start with some of the things that I made.  First up…Bruschetta with Marinated Fresh Mozzarella. 

Recipe from Andrea’s cooking class….not sure the exact source

Ingredients

Crostini:
8 (1/2-inch thick) slices Italian bread, cut on the diagonal
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly groud black pepper to taste

Mozzarella:
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons finely minced lemon zest (about 1/2 lemon)
1 tablespoon coarsley chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
2 bay leaves, torn in half
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
8 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into 8 slices

Directions

1.  For the crostini:  preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Brush the bread slices on both sides with olive oil, then season with salt and pepper.  Place on a baking sheet, and cook until crisp and golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.
2.  For the Mozzarella:  Whisk together oil, garlic, pepper flakes, zest, parsley, and basil.  Stir in the bay leaves, then season to taste with salt and pepper; set aside for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to develop.  (Note:  Before drizzling over the mozzarella, remove and discard the bay leaves, then whisk to re-combine.)
3.  Place the cheese in a shallow dish; drizzle with the marinade to coat.  Cover with plastic wrap, and allow tot stand at room temperature for at least one hour.
4.  Just before serving, place one slice of cheese on each crostini, and garnish with additional chopped fresh parsley; serve at room temperature.

Mrs. Pig Rating:  I looooved this!  I adore fresh mozzarella and it looks really pretty served up on a platter for an appetizer.  I will definitely be making this again!!!

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