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Cheesesteaks

I had never eaten a Philly cheesesteak before I made Cheesesteaks | the little kitchen.  This recipe was so easy and tasted like you slaved in the kitchen.  There is a little prep work but once that is done, the recipe comes together in minutes.  Enjoy a quick and hearty sandwich for dinner.

The unique thing about this recipe is the going into the oven when it is complete.  Heating through in the oven brings the sandwich to another level.  The link above has great step by step photos if you need some good visuals.

Cheesesteaks:Cheesesteaks

  • 4 hoagie rolls
  • 1/2-1 green pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup mushrooms (if you want them), thinly sliced
  • 1.25-1.5 rib eye steak, thinly sliced and then chopped finely
  • 8 pieces of Muenster cheese or provolone or a combo of the two
  • 3 Tbs butter
  • salt and pepper

First prep all vegetables and meat  slices as listed.  Place each hoagie in an open position on a sheet of foil, so it is ready to be filled.

If using mushrooms you can simply sauté them on their own or with the onions and peppers if you like the combo.  Using 1 Tbs butter sauté over medium/high heat in a non stick skillet all the vegetables.  Cook 5-8 minutes until golden, once cooked season with salt and pepper.  Remove vegetables and place on a plate to the side.

Wipe out the pan and add 1 Tbs butter and half the meat over medium heat, season with salt and pepper.  Saute the meat for 1-2 minutes add in half the vegetables back in and mix the two together.

Divide this mixture in to two sections and top with cheese until melted.  Slide off each cheese covered section into a roll.  And repeat with remaining meat and vegetables until all hoagies have been filled.

Now tightly wrap each hoagie roll up almost squashing it.  Place in a 250 degree oven for 10-15 minutes.  If reheating leftovers leave the foil on and store in a plastic bag.  Reheat at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.
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Crock Pot Italian Chicken

Crock pot Italian chicken turned out so flavorful.  Thanks to Hunk of Meat Monday: Crock Pot Italian Chicken  I had a quick meal on a busy day.  Wasn’t sure what I was going to do with the meat but I quickly put it in the crock pot and left the house.

When I returned home, I simple pulled the chicken out and shredded it then returned it to the pot.  I then gave my family the option of having it as a sandwich, quesadilla, or atop a salad.  We all tried it a different way.  I ate it on a salad for three days in a row it was so good.  This was not to spicy for the kids because there are no seeds left in the peppers.

I am still searching for a substitute for an Italian seasoning package.  I hate to use those packets of seasoning.  They do taste so good and are quick.  Need a healthier option will keep you posted.

Crock Pot Italian Chicken:

  • 2 lbs. of chicken, mixture of breasts and boneless skinless thighs works great
  • 1 package of italian seasoning/dressing mixture
  • up to a 12 oz. jar of mild pepper rings or seed and slice whole ones, plus 2-4 Tbs of juice from jar

Place chicken in slow cooker.

Sprinkle with seasoning and top with peppers.  Add a bit of juice from the pepper jar.

Turn the crock pot to low and cook on low for about 8 hours.  Around hour 7 you can remove the chicken shred and return to the pot.


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Cheeseburger Meatloaf

Came across this recipe from Recipes Straight from the Kowboys Home: “Big Mac” Meatloaf.  Big Mac meatloaf sounded right up Mr.Picky’s alley.  The recipe turned out nice and moist, not sure about tasting like a big mac.  It definitely tasted like a cheeseburger.  Cheeseburger meatloaf is not your average meatloaf and was a great change.

The technique was really interesting and I am going to run wild with it.  I can’t wait to stuff all kinds of fillings into meatloaf.  I would serve this as cheeseburgers to company by just slicing and serving on buns.

cheeseburger meatloafCheeseburger Meatloaf:

  • 2 lbs. lean ground beef
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup thousand island dressing
  • 2/3 cup cracker or bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup sweet relish
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Combine all but the cheese and mix well until evenly combined.

Divide the meat mixture in half.  Spread each half flat in to a rectangle on a piece of wax paper.

Sprinkle the cheese even between the two flat rectangles.

cheeseburger meatloaf

Roll each sheet of meat as if making cinnamon rolls, from the long end to long end.

Place the rolls side by side in a 9 x 13″ baking dish.

cheeseburger meatloaf

Bake 350 degrees for 30 minutes, remove from oven and top with a bit of ketchup and some more cheese if desired.

Continue to bake another 15 minutes or so.
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Gobble-Up Strata

Flipping through some cooking magazines at grandma’s house this recipe for gobble-up strata struck my attention.  It is an article on ways to use up leftovers after Thanksgiving.  Well it is no are we close to Thanksgiving and my Grandma and me wants to know who has leftover stuffing or dressing?  It is always the first thing to disappear at our meal and we usually make double dishes.

I figures I could make this whenever and it sounded pretty good.  Mr.Picky is not a huge fan of strata but I served it when company was around so I knew he would eat it no matter what.  Knowing that I would never have leftover stuffing I prepared some with the purpose of this recipe alone.  I also used some rotisserie chicken that I had pulled apart and frozen previously.  The peppers and onions give it great color, it reminds me of Christmas.

The strata turned out great and was very filling.  Mr.Picky said it would be even better with a bit of turkey gravy over the top, I must agree that it would make it even better.

Gobble Up StrataGobble-Up Strata:

  • 3-4 cups leftover stuffing or dressing
  • 2 cups cubed and cooked chicken or turkey
  • 4 green onions,chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise

 

Lightly grease a 9×13″ baking dish.

Layer stuffing, then chicken, followed by the green onions and peppers.

Whisk together the eggs, milk, and mayonnaise and pour evenly over the top of the casserole.

Bake at 350 degrees uncovered for 60-65 minutes.  Allow to cool about 10 minutes before serving.

Gobble-Up Strata

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Spanish Rice

I don’t remember even eating Spanish Rice as a child.  Mr.Picky loves spanish and mexican rice out of a box but I refuse to make the sodium filled rice.  I have come up with a recipe similar to the Mexican rice but had no recipe for the Spanish rice until now.

After doing some research and came up with this recipe after combining what sounded good to me.  It turned out great.  In fact is was the base layer to a skillet/casserole recipe I was making.  Be sure to check back for that recipe.

This Spanish rice is not spicy due to the little ones.  Extra heat could be added with come cayenne pepper to the mix or maybe add a diced jalapeño.  It was flavorful without too much salt and the perfect heat for the kids.

Spanish RiceSpanish Rice:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 (15 oz) can petite diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1/2 green pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup uncooked long grain white rice
  • 1/4 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 tsp or 1 cube chicken bullion
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cumin

In a skillet heat olive oil over medium/ high heat.

Saute onion, pepper, and rice.  Stirring constantly so the rice does not burn, cook until most of the rice has toasted and the vegetables soften.

Spanish Rice

Add the rice mixture to a medium pot along with the remaining ingredients.

Bring the mixture up to a boil, cover and reduce heat to the lowest it will go.

Cook covered for about 15 minutes or until rice is tender.  Fluff with a fork when done.


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Curried Pork

Some of my favorite cookbooks are Cooking Light Annual Recipes, this recipe struck my eye out of the 2004 edition.  As a child my mother cooked a lot with curry and to be honest it burned me out on it.  Mr.Picky likes it so I thought I should give it a try and cook a curry dish.

This dish was great and easy.  Allow yourself at least an hour to cook though.  The only thing I would do differently is add some more spice for a fuller flavor.  I have adjusted the recipe to what I would do next time.  We served our curried pork over white rice with seasoned roasted cauliflower.

Curried PorkCurried Pork:

  • 1 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup green pepper, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 1/2 lb. boneless pork loin, cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can no salt added diced tomatoes, undrained

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large nonstick skillet lightly sprayed with cooking spray or olive oil saute onions and peppers over medium heat for about 3 minutes.

Add in mushrooms and cook another 2 minutes.

Curried Pork

Place vegetables in a 11 x 7″ baking dish that has been lightly greased.

Combine flour, curry powder,salt, and pepper in a bowl.  Add pork and toss to coat.

Curried Pork

In the same pan you used for vegetables, spray again with oil.  Over medium high heat add pork mixture and cook about 5 minutes until pork has browned on each side.

Pour pork mixture over vegetables in baking dish.  Now pour the can of tomatoes over the whole dish.

Curried Pork

Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until tender.

Serve over rice.

Curried Pork

 

Slow Cooker Corned Beef Brisket

Slow Cooker Corned BeefI don’t care for beef to often but my exception to the rule is when I get to eat Corned Beef Brisket.  I usually prepare it a few times a year.  Using the same method as I usually do I kicked it up to another level this time.  We don’t eat corned beef as most do, we save ours and prepare reuben sandwiches or corned beef sandwiches until it is gone, sometimes we make it into corned beef hash.

With the few added ingredients my corned beef had a whole new level of flavor.  It was so good, Mr.Picky and the kids had a hard time keeping their fingers back as I was slicing it.

Be warned corned beef stinks when it is cooking.  In fact Mr.Picky walked in the door and asked if the dog pooped in the house.  But the smell is nothing like the flavor.  I can tell that is smells like corned beef and not something produced by the dog.  In fact I don’t think they smell anything alike but it is a strong odor.  My mother in-law can not cook it in her house because Mr.Picky’s father the Pickiest father in-law can not take the smell.  So maybe if preparing for guest light some good candles or put the slow cooker in the garage.

Slow Cooker Corned Beef Brisket:

  • 3-4 lb. corned beef brisket (juices included but fat trimmed off completely)
  • 2 cups Guinness stout beer
  • 2 whole cloves
  • package of pickling seasoning (all corned beef comes with this spice packet)
  • 1/2 tsp pepper or 5 peppercorns
  • water to cover

Place brisket with juices from the package in the slow cooker.  Slice and peel the fat layer off and discard.

Add the seasoning package that the corned beef comes with, the cloves, and peppercorns.

Pour in the Guinness stout and then enough water to cover the corned beef completely.

Turn slow cooker to high and cook for about 8 hours.

Remove the brisket and discard the juices cooked in.

Slow Cooker Corned Beef

Slice brisket on an angle against the grain.

Slow Cooker Corned Beef

Serve as desired.
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