Sunday, January 5, 2014

Penne with Tomato Basil Cream Sauce



I saw an episode of Pioneer Woman and was inspired to create this recipe.  I can’t even link to her blog because I don’t even know the recipe she was doing, just saw it part way through and used some of her ideas to create something that I thought was new and that our family would like.  It was funny, Brady was helping me and I was pouring ingredients into the pan.  He asked, “Aren’t you going to measure anything?”  I said, “no, don’t you trust me?  I know what I’m doing, I’m the cook”

This is what I came up with:

1 lb Turkey sausage (I like Jenni O or Honeysuckle white- I use the breakfast sausage and not just ground turkey- I love the flavor)  (I’m on a turkey sausage kick lately, its healthier and has more flavor that regular ground beef)

Brown the sausage and remove from the pan

Saute 1/2 an onion and 2-3 cloves of garlic in the sausage drippings and a little olive oil

Add 1/2 cup chicken stock

Add 1 jar or your favorite Pasta Sauce- I used and we LOVED it Ragu Parmesan and Romano

stir until bubbly

Add 1 cup of cream (I used heavy whipping cream)

Salt, Pepper to taste

Chopped Italian Parsley and Fresh Basil

Add to pan and simmer until thickened

Pour over Penne pasta, or your favorite pasta and Enjoy!!  (WE DID- for 2 nights)

Chicken Bacon Ranch Taquitos

Baked Chicken Bacon Ranch Taquitos


My whole family LOVED this recipe from Six Sisters Stuff here.  I used some leftover chicken from a Rotisserie Chicken and some leftover Prime Rib Roast .

1 8 oz package of cream cheese

4 cups meat (chicken, beef or whatever you have leftover)

12 slices of back cooked and crumbled

2 cups of cheese (their recipe called for Monterey Jack, but I only had Colby Jack- what I always have)

1/2 package dry Ranch dressing mix

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Salt, and pepper to taste

20 flour tortillas

cooking spray

salt for the top

Mix filling and fill and roll tortillas tightly.  Place seam side down on cookie sheet.  I make 10 at a time and save the rest of the filling for the next night.  They are best freshly cooked.  Spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt.  Cook at 425 for 15-20 min.  Tastes great dipped in Ranch, Sour cream, or Salsa Ranch (equal parts of ranch and salsa).

Sage Ciabatta Stuffing


I must apologize for the bad picture.  This was taken with my very dumb phone and didn’t get a better picture before it was gobbled up (both times I’ve made it).

I have never been fond of stuffing.  I have wanted to and always go into the Thanksgiving season with the intention that I like it and am excited to make it.  However, I am always disappointed after I eat it… it wasn’t as good as I thought it should be.  I’ve been searching for the perfect stuffing recipe and trying different variations.  I think I have found it!!  We all loved this recipe..and all who have tried it have liked it.  I found the basic recipe from here.  I liked his idea, but as always, I like to make it my own, based on my family’s likes and tastes.  So, this is my version of the stuffing:

6 large square ciabatta rolls, cubed and dried in the oven at 250 degrees for 30 min.  Cook them on 2 cookie sheets and let them cool.

While the bread is cooking,  cook 1 lb sage flavored pork sausage until crispy (a little more done than you might think).  Remove from the pan.

In the drippings, saute a chopped onion and 3 cloves of minced garlic.  Add 3 or 4 stalkes of chopped celery to the pan.

Add 1/2 cup chopped pecans

Add 1/2 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1 tsp poultry seasoning

Chop up 1 bunch of Italian Parsley, put half into the pan and save 1/2 it  for a little later.

Pour cooled bread into a LARGE bowl that you can stir all the ingredients together.

Pour sausage mixture into it.  Shred 2 apples with a cheese grater and add to the mixture.  I don’t even peel the apple.

Add the rest of the parsley

Stir all together

Add 2- 2 1/2 cups chicken broth mixed with 1/2 cup butter.  Add as much as you like depending on how moist you like your stuffing.

Pour into a large roasting pan.  I like to use a very large one because I like my stuffing on the crispy side and the thicker it is, the more moist it will be.

Cook at 350 for 30 min covered with foil.  Remove the foil and cook longer if you like it crispy on top