Tag Archive: rice

Favorite Family Sides for Easter

Holiday Meal Side Dishes

I don’t know about you but in my family there are certain sides that must accompany each holiday meal.  At Easter, Andy equals broccoli rice, Amy equals deviled eggs, Krista equals rolls and mashed potatoes.  No one would say anything but it would be akin to disowning them.  So, I have whipped up some of these to be ready for Sunday.  We are adding fruits and vegetables because that is what Cameron (my oldest grandaughter) likes.  Maddie must lick the bowl when I am baking…see all of my cupcake recipes.  Oh yeah…there is ham.  That is a given, but really my group gathers round for their favorite side dishes.

Broccoli Rice Casserole

Deviled Eggs

Carrots

KiStrawNana Salsa

I am taking all these family favorites to Saturday dishes which starts tomorrow morning.  I hope you will join us there.  It promises to be a grand collection of side dishes if you are still making your shopping list.

Saturday Dishes

Happy Easter

 

 

Green Food! I Mean Green…Really Green.

Green Food?  Really?  I’ve heard of Green Eggs and Ham.   When I “Googled” green food I got a whole list of organic, naturally grown food.  That was not quite what I had in mind.  Not that there’s anything wrong with those, of course.  I was thinking St. Patrick’s Day not natural food.

I made a list of naturally green food:  peppers, cabbage, celery, cucumbers, asparagus, avocado, broccoli, kale, green beans, leeks, green onions, spinach, lettuce, peas, zucchini, Granny Smith apples, kiwi, honeydew, green grapes.  Then of course there are all sorts of herbs.  Cilantro, parsley, chives, tarragon, mint… the list can go on.

So what was I worried about?  There are plenty of green food items I use all the time.

I wanted to make something green for Saturday Dishes.  (I’ll get to St. Patrick’s Day green a little later with cookies, cakes and whatever else.)  I did come up with a roasted Napa Cabbage, Broccoli, and Leek dish and to go with it a Green Cilantro Rice.

I know you either like or hate cilantro.  I happen to like it….a lot!  Huevos Rancheros and Chicken Tacos aren’t complete without it.  If you like it this rice is very easy and tasty.

What other green foods can you think of?  Link it to Saturday Dishes sometime this weekend.  We will open the show early tomorrow morning so come back and link up your green.  Sweetened or unsweetened is fine!

Broccoli, Leek and Napa Cabbage

Green Rice

Saturday Dishes-Seafood

Saturday Dishes

I am happy to be co-hosting this blog hop with Savannah from Hammock Tracks and Paula from Call Me PMC.   Each week we have a theme.  This week it is Fish and Shrimp.

This week is pushing me outside my comfort zone.  I am not a lover of fish.  You probably have noticed a deficit of those recipes on this site.  My son did some good tacos.  He really likes them.  If someone else cooks it, I might be tempted to try it.  I do my token salmon fillet or croquettes on occasion.  I would eat chicken 10 times before fish.  So here goes.  I was surprised at how good this was.

Salmon with Mustard Sauce

 

If you are a foodie blogger share your favorite seafood dish with us this week.  If you are a food creator and looking to make something fresh from the sea find your favorite recipes, and create your grocery list before you head out to the store.

To view all of the upcoming “Saturday Dishes” themes, click here.

Be sure to visit Hammock Tracks and Call Me PMC as we will each feature different posts from the previous week party.

Also, please provide a link back to this post either on your parties page or in the post itself.  You can grab the button above if you like.

My featured blog for this week is: Real Housemoms and their awesome looking Snickers Chocolate Cake.   I love Snickers and cake and I love the Real Housemoms too.  They always have something delicious to eat at their site.

Snickers Chocolate Cake #snickers #dessert

Now show us what you “sea.”

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I feature all of my favorites from around the blogosphere at Weekly Rays of Sunshine on Saturday mornings.  Also, don’t forget to come to my Monday linky party to tell me what you did this weekend.
What'd Ya Do This Weekend Button

Stuffed Peppers and Skillet Roasted Eggplant

I was hungry for a meal I would have made my family – way long time ago.  I had a bell pepper and some ground meat and an eggplant.  Two out of three were healthy, so I decided to proceed.  I didn’t want to use the oven and wait.  I decided to try stuffed bell peppers in a deep wok pan and the eggplant in a skillet.  I got those good flavors I was thinking about, but a little quicker and in a much smaller portion.  When my family was all at home, I made a lot of food.  It has taken me years to whittle down my portions.  Some things don’t taste as good unless I make them in volume to feed five.

We didn’t eat leftovers back then.  Hank didn’t like those, unless it was a ham.  Later on Andy would eat leftover casseroles or anything he could put on a flour tortilla and warm up in the microwave.  I eat leftover in almost any fashion.  Until I get tired of it.

I still make Spicy Spaghetti Sauce and lasagna to feed an army and Vegetable Soup or Chicken Soup is down to about 5-6 servings now.  Those are always good to have on hand.

This meal was good for two meals for me.  Perfect, so I could get home from walking, take care of a few chores and warm up dinner before Grey’s Anatomy started. Your peppers will be tender and the rice and meat will have that good pepper flavor too.

Be sure to check out some updates from my new friends over at New Friend Friday this week.

Pumpkin Rice

A Guest Post by Big Sister

This is one of those “experiments.”  It turns out to be a happy one.  The only thing is I don’t know if you quantify it as a Thanksgiving Side or dessert.  It is a little of both.  I served it for dinner at the Austin Junior Forum and they loved it.  It will probably be a great left over with left overs.  Next time I might cut some of the sugar and add chopped pecans.  OR you could go full on rice pudding and layer it with whip cream and chopped pecans.  However you like it.  Here’s to experiments!  Happy Thanksgiving!

Pumpkin Rice

  • 4 cups instant rice
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 (29 ounce) can pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • salt to taste

Bring the rice and water to a boil, reduce the heat and cook until water is fully absorbed. The Contessa says that it is best if it starts to stick to the bottom of the pan rather than be a little bit soupy.

In a separate sauce pan over low heat combine pumpkin, spice , sugar and butter until melted.

Stir the pumpkin mixture into the cooked rice and add salt to taste.  Heat over low heat if needs to warm a bit.

Great reheated in the microwave!

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Mexican Fiesta Update

Oops! I forgot to include the recipe for my rice. Here it is.

Mexican Rice

1 cup white or brown rice
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 jalapeño pepper finely diced
½ medium yellow onion, finely diced
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons tomato paste

In a medium sauce pan with a lid, add the rice, and vegetable oil. With the flame on medium-high toast the rice stirring constantly. (It will burn quickly when it gets hot.)
Add the jalapeño and onion and cook about 2 minutes. Add the water, salt and tomato paste. Stir well.

Cover and turn the heat to low and cover. Simmer until all the water is absorbed about 20 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.

Mexican Fiesta

As I have said before I try to eat healthy.  Sometimes nothing will do though but to have a good mexican dinner.  My favorite is enchiladas with all the trimmings.  Here in the West Texas town of El Paso everyone has the best recipe for tacos, rice, salsa, beans, tamales and most importantly enchiladas.  My best are traditional with red sauce. To go to the fancier side, I do Suiza sauce.  Here are the recipes.  I gotta go eat!

Baked Tortilla Chips

  • 6 wheat or white corn tortillas
  • Pam non-stick cooking spray
  • Kosher Salt

Cut the tortillas into quarters or sixths, place on a baking sheet and lightly spray with the non-stick cooking spray.  Sprinkle with salt.

Bake at 425° for 10 minutes.  Watch closely so they don’t brown too much.

 

Mexican Chicken Enchiladas with Suiza Sauce

Sauce

  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 pound shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Enchiladas

  • vegetable oil
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 2 cups cooked cubed or bite size chicken meat
  • 1 small can chopped green chiles
  • 1 cup chopped green onions
  • 2 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves, for garnishing, if desired
  • 4 ounces Queso Anejo, shredded (substitute Parmesan if unavailable)
  • 1 cup sour cream, for serving, optional
  • Salsa or Pico de Gallo, for serving, optional

Sauce 

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Whisk in the milk, little by little, until thoroughly combined. Add the chicken stock and bring sauce to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until thickened and flavorful, about 10 minutes. Add the pepper jack and stir until melted. Season with the salt and remove from the heat. Set aside, covered, while you assemble the enchiladas.

Enchiladas

Heat a small skillet over high heat. When hot, add some of the vegetable oil and 1 of the tortillas. Cook until soft, turning midway, about 30 seconds per tortilla. Transfer to a plate to assemble the enchilada.  (You can’t stop to answer the phone now.)

Place some of the chicken down the middle of the tortilla, top with some of the green chiles and grated cheese.  Spoon about a tablespoon of the sauce down the center of the chicken/cheese and roll the tortilla.  Place seam-side down in the baking dish.

Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake for 25-30 minutes at 350°. Remove the foil and continue to bake for about 10 minutes more, or until the sauce and cheese are bubbly and light golden brown on top.

Serve immediately, garnished with a dollop of sour cream, chopped cilantro, Spanish Rice and a spoonful of Grama Jo’s salsa, if desired.

Creamy Mushroom Sauce for a Casserole

A friend at work, Nelda and I were discussing how the Food Network has influenced our cooking style.  I think it has improved my cooking and it has certainly made me more aware of how I can improve the flavor by using broth and fresh herbs and olive oil.  When I learned to cook with my mom, we didn’t use those at all.  She had 4 children to feed and the budget didn’t include all the extras.  Salt and pepper and maybe a dried bay leaf were her flavor enhancers.  She made good food though.  As time went by she began to venture out to try more and different things. I cleaned out her kitchen when she moved, her spice cabinet was still pretty basic.  There were more flavorings she added to cookies, cakes and pies than there were for savory dishes.

I was reading a food blog and there was a discussion about plain home cooked food and nothing would do but I was going to have a pork chop and rice dish.  I always stop at that thought because of all the salt in canned food.  I decided if I can make my own Suiza sauce for green chicken enchiladas, I can make my own cream of mushroom soup.  It was pretty good and satisfied my need for a good casserole.

Creamy Mushroom Sauce for Casseroles

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (or oil of your choice)
  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1 ½ cups chopped baby Portabella (or button) mushrooms
  • 1 shallot diced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup beef broth or ½ cup broth/1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme (chopped)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

Heat the oil and butter in a non-stick skillet until butter has melted.  Add the mushrooms and shallot and add some salt and pepper.  Cook until mushrooms and shallot are soft.

Add the flour and cook for about 2 minutes. (Adjust the liquid you add depending on how thick you want your sauce.)  Using a whisk add the broth and milk and stir until bubbly and slightly thickened.

At this point I use it as I would canned cream of mushroom soup (no need to dilute). I know and can pronounce all my ingredients.

Brown your pork chops (I like thin cut ones.) in a small amount of oil in a non-stick skillet.  Let them brown on both sides with a light sprinkle of salt and pepper.  Remove to a prepared oven-proof dish.

I used the same skillet for the sauce as I browned the pork chops in, and sautéed the mushrooms and shallot in the oil and just added a bit of oil and the butter to melt before adding the mushrooms and shallot.

Sprinkle about ½ cup white rice over the pork chops and add the sauce.  Cover the baking dish with foil and bake at 350° for about 40 minutes or until the rice is tender.

I served this with steamed cabbage and a small plate with radishes and onions from my garden.

 

Broccoli Rice-Must Have Thanksgiving Side

Broccoli Rice Casserole

Comforting side dishes are necessary to complete any meal in my kitchen.  If you can find a basic one that includes a rib-sticking starch and a vegetable, you can add or switch ingredients and make several different variations.  In my family, this one combination is the most requested.  This came about as an emergency addition one Thanksgiving dinner when my son, Andy asked if we were planning to serve it. (This was in answer to my question, “Are you coming to dinner?”   It has become a part of the menu planning to be sure I have everybody’s favorite.  So, I call this one Andy’s Broccoli Rice Casserole.

Rice was a favorite with my husband.  His family was from the South and rice was included in many meals.  It was new to me, and I had to scrub a lot of pans until I learned the right way to prepare it.  I burned it, let it dry out and served it undercooked!
Burning it is the worst clean up job there can be.  I think it forms a particularly strong bond with aluminum when not prepared correctly.  Non-stick pans weren’t around when I began to practice cooking.

The Broccoli Rice Casserole recipe came from a long-time high school friend when I was just married. Hank didn’t like soup combined with his rice and let me know it.  Then an Aunt made this and he raved about how good it was.   He even requested it with
his favorite meal which was a ham.