Monday, October 22, 2012

Soup! Soup! Soup!

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili

Fall is here and winter is not far away!!!


  Sorry if that isn't what you wanted to hear but there is good news!  We can now break out our great soup recipes!  There isn't anything quite as good as a hot bowl of delicious steaming soup when it is cold outside.  

     Here is a really flavorful and "good -for- you" recipe for Chili that has some ingredients that take it above the ordinary to a hearty soup that you will find yourself thinking about again and again!

   I found this recipe here.  I love the recipes Our Best Bites post and this one is does not fail to impress!   They are amazing!  So here is my version of how to prepare it and I hope to do it justice!  (I have only very slightly modified it!There is a lot of chopping and mincing here so I included some of the helps I used to make this a whole lot easier! 

    This is my Vidalia Chop Wizard.  It was a gift for my birthday and it saved me so much time!  You need to slice the veggies so they will lay mostly flat on the dicing screen but it only takes seconds to finish the job!  I used my NorPro Deluxe Vegetable Chopper to mince the Jalapeno.  I love it as well.
                                   Add to a large frying pan,
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil, 
1 medium diced onion, 
4 cloves minced garlic, 
1 diced bell pepper
1-2 minced jalapenos, (I used 2 smallish jalapeno peppers and it was just perfect.  I don't like very much heat but just a little bite so use that as a guide.)   
Saute on medium high for about 5 minutes until tender.
Place all of this in the slow cooker.

     Next, add the remaining oil to the skillet and add:

1- 1/2 lbs ground beef.  (Best Bites uses ground turkey and tell me that ground chicken would work well too.)  

Add 8 oz. minced mushrooms.  (The Valalia Chop Wizard has a small dice plate too and it worked well with these.)  

Sprinkle in,
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons kosher salt (less if using regular salt, start with 1 tsp and add more to taste later), 
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. chili powder,  
1 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika (available at most grocery stores, I found mine at WinCo where you can buy a small amount inexpensively). 

 Mix and brown the meat mixture and then add all to the slow cooker.

1 1/2 lbs diced sweet potatoes (These were too hard for the choppers to chop).
1 28 oz. can tomatoes, undrained
2 15 oz. cans drained and rinsed black beans
32 oz beef broth
1 15 oz can pumpkin puree, (not the pumpkin pie filling mix
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 Tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder 

     Mix until well combined and then cook on high 4-6 hours or low 8-10 hours. Chili is done when the sweet potatoes are tender.  Makes about 16 cups. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Marinated Baked Chicken

Let me just say at the beginning of this post that I do love to cook but...I am not a computer or camera whiz in any sense of the word.  So I promise to bring amazing recipes and tips and also to keep learning to make this a super fun and great blog.  I sooo appreciate your patience!

Now for the main attraction!

     I chose this recipe because I really wanted to "Wow" you with a simple yet elegant main dish.  This is oh so easy to make but totally great to serve to guests.  I got this recipe a few years back from a Simple & Delicious Magazine.  (Unfortunately I cut it out and don't have the name of the person who submitted it to give her credit.  Please let me know if you have seen it). It has been only mildly adapted by me. 

     This succulent (I love using big juicy words!) chicken breast will melt in your mouth with amazing flavor.  To top it all off there are only 5 ingredients!  Just be very careful to check it often and don't over cook it!  Enjoy!

Marinated Baked Chicken Breast 


1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
1/2 cup soy sauce
6 bone-in chicken breast halves
1/8 teaspoon onion salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic salt

In a measuring cup, combine salad dressing and soy sauce.


 Pour 3/4 cup into a large resealable plastic bag; add chicken.  Seal the bag and turn to coat; refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight, turning several times. Refrigerate remaining marinade for basting.  (This is where I always mess up choose to do it differently. Remember to set aside 1/4 cup of the marinade ingredients before  pouring the rest into the bag.  If you forget it is easy to just make a little more using even amounts of dressing and soy sauce). 

Drain chicken, discarding marinade.  Place chicken, skin side up, on a rack in a roasting pan.  Sprinkle with onion salt and garlic salt.  (I don't measure I just sprinkle a light coating of each on each piece of meat).  Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 45-60 min. or until juices run clear, brushing occasionally with reserved marinade. (I begin checking after 40 minutes by cutting into the meat with a small cut to see if the juices are clear.  Please don't over cook this.  It usually only takes 45 min. for mine to be done but it depends on the size of the chicken breast.)
 Yield: 6 servings
                   Try it, you will love it!

This recipe was shared with the following sites!
Anyonita Nibbles