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Meal Idea Monday Guest Post: Veggie Lasagna

9 Sep
Veggie Lasagna From The Copycat Kitchen

Veggie Lasagna From The Copycat Kitchen

Happy Monday, everyone! It’s a beautiful, cool, rainy day here… which makes me one happy girl! We welcome the rain here in Arizona. 🙂

Today I have a wonderful guest post for you written by a new friend of mine. Her name is Pauline, and she has a blog called The Copycat Kitchen. I know you will enjoy her meal idea, as well as any others that she brings to our Food Tidings community in the future!  Have a great day, and be someone’s reason to smile today! is an amazing website that my church has been using for years.  I have used it several times to schedule meals for a friend who just had a baby, or another going through an illness.  It blesses me to know that it is blessing them!  I love that makes it so easy to see what is being brought so that everyone doesn’t bring the same meal!

This recipe is called “Chunky Vegetable Lasagna.”  It’s a meal that everyone likes…who doesn’t like vegetables smothered in cheese?!  It uses 3 different cheeses and a pesto garlic-cream sauce.  Whenever possible I made quick work of the prep work by using my Cuisinart food processor to chop/slice the veggies or grate cheese (all different blades).  This was originally posted on my food blog where I like to recreate healthy versions of everyone’s favorite meals and desserts:

12 uncooked whole wheat lasagna noodles
3 cups broccoli, chopped (I used 3 cups zucchini because I didn’t have broccoli)
3 large carrots, coarsely shredded (about 2 cups)
2 cups tomatoes diced, drained (or 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes drained)
1 medium red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1 medium green bell pepper, cut into thin strips
3/4 cup Pesto (you can buy in store or make your own easily)
1/4 tsp salt (I use unrefined pink Himalayan sea salt)
1 container Ricotta cheese (15 oz)
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated (*I like to grate my own in my food processor or by hand because any time you buy grated cheese it contains toxic preservatives and anti-caking agents–all not good for you)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley (or 1/8 cup dried)
1 large egg (free range, pastured, organic fed is best!)
3 tbsp butter (never margarine! It is 1 molecule away from being plastic!)
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
3 tbsp whole wheat flour
2 cups milk (grass fed is best)
3 cups mozzarella cheese (12 oz), shredded (*see above notes about grating your own cheese)

1) Cook and drain noodles according to directions.
2) Mix broccoli, carrots, tomatoes, bell peppers, Pesto and salt. (large bowl in picture)
3) Mix ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, parsley, and egg (medium bowl in picture)
4) Melt butter in 2 quart sauce pan over medium heat. Cook garlic in butter about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until garlic is golden brown. Stir in flour. Cook over medium heat, stirring CONSTANTLY (or it will burn!) until mixture is smooth and bubbly, remove from heat. Stir in milk. Put back on the burner and heat to boiling, again stirring CONSTANTLY (or it will burn!) Boil and stir 1 minute.
5) Heat oven to 350 degrees.
6) Place 3 noodles in ungreased rectangular pan, 13x9x2 inches.
Spread half the cheese mixture over noodles.
Top with 3 noodles, spread with half the veggie mixture
Sprinkle with 1 cup of mozzarella cheese.
Top with 3 noodles; spread remaining cheese mixture.
Top with 3 noodles; spread evenly the remaining veggie mixture.
Pour milk/butter sauce evenly over the top.
Sprinkle with remaining 2 cups of mozzarella cheese.
7) Bake uncovered 35-40 min or until hot in center. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting

Makes 8 (big) servings, 540 calories each


Thanks, Managed Mom!

27 Aug

If you haven’t checked out Managed Mom’s blog yet, you totally have to. The author, Rachel, is amazing. She posts awesome stuff over there, she’s humorous, real, and her content is very relevant to most people that I know!

Well, she posted today about Food Tidings! We’re excited that the word continues to get out about our site. Go check out this post, and then browse her site for other great ideas and products.

Have a great evening!


Meal Idea Monday Guest Post: Chicken Quarters Roasted With Lemons and Green Olives

2 Apr

Hello! I’m Andrea, a stay-at-home mom and food blogger for Inspired2Cook. I love cooking, entertaining, and motivating others to get in their kitchens! Recently, I posted this delicious recipe for Chicken Quarters Roasted with Lemons and Green Olives. It’s easy to make and a great reason to throw a Spring dinner party! The dish can be made ahead and reheated, making it perfect for entertaining.

I found some really good pitted green olives at my store’s olive bar. Sample a few different types (if your store lets you do that); you’ll need 1 cup of whole olives. I think pitted work best in this recipe so that nobody breaks a tooth biting into an olive pit. If you can’t find pitted olives, however, warn your guests about the pits. Also, buy olives that haven’t been marinated (you don’t want flavors competing in the dish).

Serve the chicken with buttered orzo (rice-shaped pasta) and a mixed green salad. For dessert, serve Sour Cream and Lemon Pound Cake  with fresh berries.

I hope you’ll stop by Inspired2cook and say hello!  -Andrea

Chicken Quarters Roasted With Lemons and Green Olives

-recipe from Sunday Roasts by Betty Rosbottom

Many cooks overlook dark-fleshed thighs and legs in favor of their white-meat counterparts, breasts and wings. The truth is that thighs and legs are both moist and flavorful and can easily take center stage. In the following dish, chicken quarters (both legs and thighs) are roasted slowly in an aromatic mix of green olives, lemon, and white wine until they are golden brown, juicy, and tender. For serving, the chicken is showered with crumbled feta. Serves 6.

3 large, thick-skinned lemons 6 chicken leg-and-thigh quarters with skin on, about 3 1/2 pounds Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil 3/4 cup chopped shallots (2 to 3 large shallots) 6 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley 4 teaspoons minced garlic 2 teaspoons dried oregano 1 1/4 cups dry white wine 1 cup green Mediterranean olives, pitted or unpitted 3/4 to 1 cup chicken broth 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

Arrange a rack in the center position and preheat the oven to 375°F degrees.

Zest 2 of the lemons to yield 2 tablespoons, and juice to yield 1/4 cup juice. Cut the third lemon into 6 wedges for the garnish.

Pat the chicken quarters dry with paper towels. Trim and discard any excess fat. Salt and pepper the chicken generously on both sides. Place an extra-large ovenproof frying pan (with a lid) over medium- high heat with enough oil to coat the bottom (3 to 4 tablespoons). When the oil is very hot but not smoking, add the chicken pieces in a single layer. Brown well on all sides, turning several times, for about 12 to 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and transfer the chicken to a side dish. Reserve 4 tablespoons of the oil in the frying pan and discard the rest (or add more oil to make 4 tablespoons if necessary).

Return the pan to the stove over low heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring, until just softened but not browned, for 1 to 2 minutes. Add half the parsley, the garlic and the oregano and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the lemon zest and juice, wine and olives, then return the chicken to the pan.

Bring the mixture to a simmer, then cover the frying pan and place it in the oven. Roast until the chicken is very tender when pierced with a knife, 45-50 minutes, then remove the lid and roast for 5 to 10 minutes longer to let the juices reduce slightly. Watch carefully so that the juices do not evaporate completely.

Remove the chicken to a platter, tent loosely with foil and set aside. Add 3/4 cup broth to the pan and heat until it is warm. The mixture should have a very thin, sauce-like consistency. If too thick, add an additional 1/4 cup broth. (The chicken can be prepared 1 day ahead; cool, cover, and refrigerate. Reheat, covered, in a 350°F oven until hot, 15 minutes or longer, adding extra broth if needed.)

To serve, pour the juices over the chicken. Sprinkle with feta cheese and the remaining parsley, and garnish with the lemon wedges.

Market Notes: If you can’t find whole chicken legs (that is, the drumstick and thigh attached together), you can use six thighs and six drumsticks.

Picholine or Lucques olives are good green French olives that work well in this recipe.

Cooking Tip: If you do not have an extra-large frying pan, you can use a flameproof roasting pan/tray covered with a double thickness of foil.

*Photo Credit

Guest Post: “The Healing Power Of Food”

9 Sep

I have a treat for you all, and it’s in the form of a beautiful guest post written by a wonderful woman named Heidi. She has been using Food Tidings for her MOM’s group thorugh her church for about two years now, and she has some great insights for us about the healing power of food.

I asked her to share a little about herself with us, and here’s what she writes. “My husband and I have been married for 7 years and we live in Scottsdale. I am a stay-at-home mom of two kids. Our son just turned 5 and our daughter will be 3 next month.  We attend Central Christian Church in Mesa, AZ where I have been active in our MOMs group since our oldest was 3 weeks old. In addition to my family I also am a consultant for Thirty-One Gifts, which is a faith based company that offers purses, bags and home organizing solutions.”

The Healing Power of Food

Life has been fairly hectic here, not leaving much time for blogging, no matter how much I enjoy it.  I’ve had a list going of the things I’ve been wanting to write about, but God hijacked those today and led me to what is becoming an overwhelming passion of mine . . . the healing power of food.

After the Funky Freezer Girls got started I had a dream.  In the past year I have seen firsthand how much it means for hurting families to have a homecooked meal during their struggle.   This spring I read The 10 Habits of Happy Mothers: Reclaiming Our Passion, Purpose, and Sanity by Dr. Meg Meeker, a pediatrician, wife and mom.  I wish I could type out the entire 3 pages of a story Dr. Meeker relates in the book about the power of food in a section entitled, “Food is Friendship” because it is so powerful and touches me in a profound way. In one of my favorite passages from the book, Dr. Meeker writes about WHY we feel the need to take care of others through food:

For many of us mothers, feeding people is our love language.  When we are too intimidated to express our feelings, particularly when sadness is involved, we resort to casseroles.  Bake chicken, cut up carrots, and roll out pie dough.  These are the hand motions of a friend who longs to soothe a mother’s broken heart.  And somehow, miraculously they do (pg 28)

Dr. Meeker goes on to to tell the story of the power of food and friendship in the lives of two women, Beth and Lisa.  Lisa’s husband was dying of cancer, leaving her with small children and Beth cooked for their family throughout his illness.  Dr. Meeker lets Beth tell the story :

“During those last days, we went to the grocery store a lot,” Beth recalls, “because I was in a serious cooking mode then.  I felt so helpless. I wanted to love Lisa the best I could, but words, hugs, flowers, nothing did it.  I don’t even know if food did, but I do know one thing, that cooking at least made us all feel that some part of life–maybe the task of keeping alive–was moving forward.  We had to all just keep moving forward.” (30)

Dr. Meeker ends the section by writing:

“Food doesn’t soothe, but intention does.  Where love stops, chicken pot pies can take over . . . So I will cook for you now, says that friend.  I can pretend that you are with me and that I can make life better for you.  So let me in, says the food.” (30)

Earlier today a friend posted this blog on the Funky Freezer Girls facebook page from one woman whose life had been blessed by being on the receiving end of a friend’s cooking.

For the past several months a mentor’s infant granddaughter has been fighting for her life.  Just after arriving in the world in April this beautiful little girl was diagnosed with a heart condition that required immediate surgery.  In June sweet Stella had to be re-admitted to the hospital because of stenosis and her fight REALLY began.  Stella’s story isn’t mine to share, but she is a true miracle and this weekend she got to go home after spending nearly 2 months in the hospital.  Because of all I’ve learned in recent months, once I knew Miss Stella was about to bust out of the hospital for the first time since mid-June I started cooking and asked her Yaya when I could drop off meals for a weary Mom and Dad.  Since then a website has been set up to help them as well and I know they’ll have meals covered for a long time, but it just felt good to be able to do something tangible for them.

I’m continually blown away by how God has used the Funky Freezer Girls.  What started out as a group of moms who were looking to simplify their lives a little bit has become one of the greatest experiences of my life.  I started out by being lazy and needing help making dinner each night, but God has taken me on a journey that has changed my heart forever and, in my mind, the least important thing about my freezer group is what I stack inside my own freezer each month.

Among the lessons I’ve learned on this journey is that blessing others through food is not about being a great cook.  You’ll never see me on FoodNetwork and I’ll never publish a cookbook.  I’m extremely intimidated when I need to cook for others and I’m not a fan of most cooking websites because I’m not a “foodie”.  I can follow a simple recipe, but if it calls for more than a handful of basic ingredients or something from a special market you won’t find it coming out of my kitchen.  Despite all that, I’ve learned that, as Dr. Meeker said, it’s about the intention.  Whether I slaved for two days over a pasta sauce and homemade noodles (not going to be happening at my place) or I whip together a casserole in 15 minutes by adding together what’s in my pantry, it doesn’t matter to the family who is being loved on.  What matters is that food was lovingly, thoughtfully and prayerfully prepared . . .

Meal Idea Monday: Pork Fried Rice From Inspired2Cook!

30 May
Hello! My name is Andrea and I’m a stay-at-home mom and author of Inspired2cook, a blog filled with recipes and cooking tips. Here’s a delicious recipe for fried rice. Not only do you get all the food groups in one dish (protein, carbs, veggies), it’s also super quick and easy to make.I used ground turkey instead of ground pork and it worked great! It’s important to use cold leftover rice because freshly-made rice will turn into a mushy mess…and nobody wants to eat that! Serve the fried rice with your favorite Asian hot sauce.To find more great recipes, visit me at (or Turkey) Fried Rice
-recipe from Martha Stewart Everyday Food

Keep leftover rice on hand to whip up this one-pot dish. It’s an economical, tasty supper that’s faster than takeout. Leftover cooked rice is perfect in this dish because it won’t stick together in the skillet. For a lighter version, substitute ground turkey for the pork. Serves 4.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons plus 1/4 teaspoon soy sauce
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1 bunch scallions, white and green parts separated and thinly sliced
1/2 pound ground pork
2 carrots, shredded
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 cups cooked white rice (about 3/4 cup uncooked rice)
2 tablespoons rice vinegar

In a wok or large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over high. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, lightly beat eggs with 1/4 teaspoon soy sauce to combine. Add eggs to wok and swirl to coat bottom of pan. Cook, without stirring, until almost set, 1 minute, then fold in thirds with a spatula. Transfer cooked eggs to a work surface and cut into 1/2-inch pieces.

Add 1 tablespoon oil to wok and swirl to coat. Add garlic, ginger, and scallion whites and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add pork and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add carrots, peas, and rice and stir to combine. Add cooked egg, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, and vinegar and cook, stirring constantly, until rice is coated, about 1 minute. Let cook, undisturbed, until warm, about 1 minute. Top with scallion greens and serve.

Guest Post from Inspired2Cook

16 Mar

Our friend Andrea over at Inspired2Cook is guest posting for us today. I love it when she does that! She’s sharing a beautiful meal idea for St. Patrick’s Day… Guinness Beef Stew and Chocolate Stout Cake. Thank you, Andrea for sharing with us!

Beef stew of any kind is always a winner in my house! So with St. Patrick’s Day right around the corner, I thought I’d give Guinness Beef Stew a try. Even if you’re not a fan of the famous dark Irish beer, you’ll still love this stew! The Guinness Draught beer makes the stew rich and chocolatey without giving it an overly beer-y (is that a word?) taste. It’s really delicious!

Instead of using the slow cooker, I cooked the stew in the oven. First, I browned the beef in two batches in my dutch oven, set the browned beef aside in a separate bowl, then browned the onions in the dutch oven. I then added the broth, Guinness and the rest of the ingredients to the dutch oven, covered it with the lid, and baked the stew in a preheated 350° oven for 3 hours. When the stew was finished cooking, I removed it from the oven and placed it on a burner set at medium-high heat. I then added the flour/beer mixture and stirred it into the simmering stew, letting it continue to simmer for about 10 minutes. Garnish with parsley and enjoy!

Guinness Beef Stew
-recipe from Cook’s Country Magazine

Test Kitchen Discoveries
-When we enhanced the beer’s complex coffee/chocolate flavors by adding bittersweet chocolate to the slow cooker, our testers raved about the beefy, stout flavor.
-We added the Guinness in two stages to get the best of its flavor—at the beginning for a base flavor and at the end for a fresh kick.
-SHOP CAREFULLY: When cooking, choose the mellower Guinness Draught rather than Guinness Extra Stout. Straight from the bottle, both beers have their merits. But after nine hours in the slow cooker, Guinness Draught was the clear winner. Tasters noticed the “clean, toasted taste” of the stew made with Guinness Draught, while the stew made with Guinness Extra Stout, although still acceptable, was noted for having a slightly “tannic, bitter” aftertaste.
-Make sure to buy large chunks of stew meat. Trim meat of excess fat, as necessary, and cut into 1-1/2 inch pieces. Be gentle when stirring in the flour in step 3—the fork-tender beef will fall apart if stirred too aggressively.

Serves 6 to 8.

4 pounds boneless beef chuck stew meat  
2 tablespoons vegetable oil  
2 onions, chopped 
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth  
1 1/2 cups Guinness Draught  (not Guinness Extra Stout)
1 tablespoon light brown sugar  
1 teaspoon dried thyme  
1 ounce bittersweet chocolate , chopped 
2 bay leaves  
5 carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks 
1 pound parsnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks 
1 1/2 pounds baby red potatoes, scrubbed 
1/4 cup all-purpose flour  
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves  

1. Pat beef dry with paper towels and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Cook half of beef until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker insert and repeat with additional 2 teaspoons oil and remaining beef.

2. Add remaining 2 teaspoons oil, onions, and 1/4 teaspoon salt to skillet and cook until onions are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add broth, 1 1/4 cups stout, sugar, thyme, chocolate, and bay leaves and bring to boil, using wooden spoon to scrape up browned bits. Transfer to slow cooker insert.

3. Add carrots, parsnips, and potatoes to slow cooker insert. Cover and cook on low until meat is tender, 9 to 10 hours (or cook on high for 6 to 7 hours). Set slow cooker to high. Whisk flour and remaining 1/4 cup beer until smooth, then stir mixture into slow cooker. Cook, covered, until sauce thickens, about 15 minutes. Stir in parsley, season with salt and pepper, and discard bay leaf. Serve.

Make Ahead: You can prepare the recipe through step 2 the night before the ingredients go into the slow cooker. Refrigerate the browned beef and the onion mixture in separate containers. In the morning, transfer the beef and the onion mixture to the slow cooker and proceed with step 3.

This Chocolate Stout Cake is moist, rich and very chocolatey. Need I say more?

For some reason, some of the cake stuck to the pan when I unmolded it (probably user error because that didn’t happen last time I made it). Husband, however, had a cunning plan. He joked that I should spackle it together. We had a good laugh but then I took his advice and stuck the loose cake chunks back on the cake. The cake is moist enough so it worked. I then covered the newly spackled cake with the ganache. See…chocolate fixes everything! 

Chocolate Stout Cake
-recipe from Fine Cooking Magazine

Rich, dark, and toasty stout beer plus deeply flavored molasses give the chocolate flavor of this cake some wonderful nuance. With this recipe, you can bake one big beautiful cake, perfect for entertaining, or a dozen irresistible miniature bundt cakes, perfect for gift giving.

Yields 1 large bundt cake or 12 miniature bundt cakes.

For the cake
1-1/4 cups stout, such as Guinness (don’t include the foam when measuring)
1/3 cup dark molasses (not blackstrap)
7-1/2 oz. (1-2/3 cups) all-purpose flour
2-1/4 oz. (3/4 cup) unsweetened natural cocoa powder (not Dutch-processed); more for the pan
1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
10 oz. (1-1/4 cups) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature; more for the pan
1-1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
6 oz. semisweet chocolate, very finely chopped

For the glaze: (optional)
3/4 cup heavy cream
6 oz. semisweet chocolate

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350ÂşF. Butter a 10- or 12-cup bundt pan (or twelve 1-cup mini bundt pans) and then lightly coat with sifted cocoa powder. Tap out any excess cocoa.

In a small saucepan over high heat, bring the stout and molasses to a simmer. Remove the pan from the heat and let stand while preparing the cake batter.

Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. With a stand mixer (use the paddle attachment) or a hand mixer, cream the butter in a large bowl on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the brown sugar and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Stop to scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in the eggs one at a time, stopping to scrape the bowl after each addition. With the mixer on low speed, alternate adding the flour and stout mixtures, beginning and ending with the flour. Stop the mixer at least one last time to scrape the bowl and then beat at medium speed until the batter is smooth, about 20 seconds. Stir in the chopped chocolate.

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan (or pans), spreading it evenly with a rubber spatula. Run a knife through the batter to eliminate any air pockets. Bake until a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out with only a few moist crumbs clinging to it, 45 to 50 minutes (about 35 minutes for mini cakes). Set the pan on a rack to cool for 20 minutes. Invert the cake onto the rack and remove the pan. Let cool until just barely warm.

Make the glaze, if using:
Bring the cream to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat. Remove the pan from the heat and add the chocolate. Let stand for 1 minute and then whisk until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Let cool for 5 minutes.

Drizzle the barely warm cake with glaze and then let cool to room temperature before serving.

Make Ahead Tips:
Wrapped tightly in plastic, the cake keeps for up to a week, or you can freeze it for up to a month. If you’re making the cake ahead, wrap it while still barely warm without the glaze. If you plan to freeze the cake, don’t glaze it until you’re ready to serve it or give it away.

Guest Post: Smoky Beef Tacos

14 Jan

Happy Friday Food Tidings followers!

As a food blogger, I’m always trying out new recipes. I came across this one for Smoky Beef Tacos a few years ago and it’s now a family favorite. In fact, every time I make these smoky shredded beef tacos, we always wish I’d made more!

The beef simmers for two hours in a chipotle-tomato sauce and emerges from the oven tender and delicious. Once you shred the meat, mix in some of the sauce it baked in (to keep the meat moist). The garnishes are easy to make and really compliment the beef so I suggest making all of them. The shredded beef would also be great in enchiladas.

Enjoy! Andrea

Smoky Beef Tacos
-recipe from

These slow-simmered beef tacos have just the right amount of spice. Serves 8.

2 to 3 tablespoons chopped canned chipotle chiles in adobo
1/2 cup ketchup
8 garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 boneless beef chuck roast (about 3 pounds), excess fat trimmed
16 corn tortillas (6-inch), lightly toasted

To garnish (recipes below):
Avocado-Red Onion Relish
Corn-and-Tomato Salsa

Cilantro-Lime Crema

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid, stir together chiles, ketchup, 1 cup water, garlic, oregano, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Cut beef into 4 equal pieces. Add to pot, and turn to coat. Cover, and bring to a boil; transfer pot to oven. Bake, covered, until beef is fork-tender, about 2 1/2 hours.

Transfer beef to a bowl. With a large spoon, skim off and discard fat from cooking liquid. Shred beef with two forks; moisten with cooking liquid as needed. Season with salt and pepper. Serve beef with tortillas and desired toppings.

Avocado-Red Onion Relish
Top off our Smoky Beef Tacos with this relish. Makes 3 cups

2 diced avocados
1 finely chopped medium red onion
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
Salt and pepper

Combine avocados, red onion, and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper.

Corn-and-Tomato Salsa
Makes 3 cups.

1 10-ounce box thawed frozen corn
1 cup quartered grape tomatoes
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons red-wine vinegar
Salt and pepper

Combine corn, grape tomatoes, vegetable oil, and red-wine vinegar. Season with salt and pepper.

Cilantro-Lime Crema
Makes 2 cups.

16 ounces reduced-fat sour cream
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Salt and pepper

Stir together sour cream, lime juice, and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper.


Ever Wondered What To Do With Leftover Turkey???

22 Dec

Well, Andrea from Inspired2Cook has the answer for you!

I was introduced to Andrea through a member of our Food Tidings community, and I’m so thankful. She has a wonderful site called Inspired2Cook. I’ll bet that after checking her site out, you will in fact be inspired to cook! She has many, many delicious recipes on there, cooking tips, and other fun things. She will be guest posting for us here on the Food Tidings blog monthly, and I’m very excited about that! I’t’s awesome to get to partner up with someone like Andrea. So, without further adue, I introduce you to Andrea. 🙂

If you’re ever in that What To Do With The Leftover Turkey quandary then you must make Turkey Chowder with Wild Rice, Crimini and Pancetta. After consuming several bowls of this hearty, satisfying chowder, Husband remarked,” This soup is awesome! It’s like an entire turkey dinner in a bowl.” My mom even declared it to be the best turkey soup she’s ever eaten. Well then, how do you top that?
Sweet corn, earthy mushrooms and wild rice give this soup loads of flavor. I cut down on the butter, substituted chopped onions for shallots, added a little Marsala wine, and used only 1/4 cup of heavy cream. I also used about 1 cup of leftover gravy, too. To save some money, I used only one 4-oz. package of pancetta because because they were almost $4 a package. To be honest, I really couldn’t taste the pancetta in the soup (maybe using the full amount would make a difference). Next time, I’d skip the pancetta all together or try using regular bacon in place of the pancetta (bacon is less expensive than pancetta). If you don’t have turkey, use leftover roast chicken. Merry Christmas!


Turkey Chowder with Wild Rice, Crimini, and Pancetta
-recipe from

For extra flavor, add leftover (plain) gravy or stuffing to the soup. If using stuffing, stir in one to two cups half an hour before the end of the cooking time. If using gravy, add it just before the soup’s done. Makes 8 main-course servings.

2 1/2 cups water
3/4 cup wild rice (about 5 ounces), rinsed, drained
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 3-ounce packages sliced pancetta (Italian bacon), diced
12 ounces crimini (baby bella) mushrooms, sliced (about 5 1/2 cups)
1/4 cup ( 1/2 stick) butter
2 carrots, diced
2 celery stalks, chopped
1/2 cup chopped shallots
1/3 cup all purpose flour
10 cups Turkey Stock (recipe below)
1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary
2 to 4 cups chopped cooked turkey meat (reserved from carcass)
1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels
1 cup heavy whipping cream
Chopped fresh Italian parsley

Bring 2 1/2 cups water, rice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt to boil in medium saucepan. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until rice is tender but still firm to bite, 45 to 60 minutes (time will vary depending on variety of rice). Drain; set aside.

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add pancetta and cook until browned, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to paper towels to drain. Add mushrooms to pot and cook until beginning to brown, about 8 minutes. Transfer to medium bowl. Add butter to same pot. Add carrots and celery. Cover; cook until vegetables begin to soften, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add shallots; stir until soft, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle flour over and stir 1 minute. Return mushrooms to pot. Mix in Turkey Stock and rosemary; bring to boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low, partially cover, and simmer 15 minutes.

Add rice, pancetta, turkey meat, and corn to soup. Simmer to blend flavors, about 10 minutes. Stir in cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD: Can be made 3 days ahead. Cool slightly. Chill uncovered until cool. Cover and keep chilled. Rewarm over medium heat before serving.

Divide soup among bowls, sprinkle with parsley, and serve.
Turkey Stock
This excellent, all-purpose broth can be made three days ahead; keep it covered and chilled. Makes 10 cups.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
1 celery stalk with leaves, chopped
1 carcass with skin from one 12- to 15-pound turkey; meat removed and reserved, carcass broken into pieces
4 quarts (about) cold water
4 fresh Italian parsley sprigs
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1 bay leaf

Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onion, carrot, and celery. Cover; cook until vegetables begin to soften, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.

Place turkey carcass pieces in pot and add enough cold water to cover bones (about 4 quarts).

Bring mixture to boil and skim any foam from the surface.

Add parsley, thyme, peppercorns, and bay leaf. Reduce heat to low, cover with lid slightly ajar, and simmer 3 hours.

Strain stock into large bowl, pressing on solids in strainer; discard solids. Let stock stand 10 minutes; skim off fat. Boil to reduce to 10 cups or add water to measure 10 cups. Season with salt and pepper.