Friday, April 26, 2013

Sweet and Sour Chicken

This chicken is seriously the BEST sweet and sour chicken I have ever made. Not only is it the best I have made, it compares to the best take out Chinese food. I had serious reservations on trying this but the blogger where I got the recipe from said it was her favorite, so I thought why not?! My husband and I have enjoyed it so much I have made it twice this week and I went to the store to get more to make this weekend...{Don't judge me!}

The complexity of this recipe was not too bad. You do have to stir the chicken every 15 minutes and it does cook  for one hour so allow a night where you have a bit of time to babysit the chicken. It was cheaper than going out for Chinese which is also a plus. Now all I need is for someone to send me a stellar recipe for fried rice so I can have the whole package. My attempts were feeble at best but the chicken made up for it. ;)

Sweet and Sour Chicken

2-3 boneless chicken breasts
Salt and Pepper to Taste
1 c. cornstarch
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 c. canola oil 

For the Sauce:

3/4 c. sugar
4 Tbs ketchup
1/2 c vinegar
1 Tbs soy sauce
1 tsp garlic salt
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes (optional, I didn't want it to be overly sweet)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cut chicken into cubes and salt and pepper to taste. Heat oil in pan on medium heat. Coat chicken first in cornstarch and then dip into beaten eggs. Fry until brown but do not cook all the way through, this will finish in the oven. 

Place chicken in 9x13 baking dish. Mix all the sauce ingredients and pour over the chicken. Bake for 1 hour and turn the chicken every 15 minutes.

{Make sure to soak the 9x13 dish right away after cooking so the sauce doesn't cake onto the sides!}

Source: Mandy's Recipe Box

Friday, April 12, 2013

Grandma's Hotdish

I love one pot wonders for supper! They are my absolute fave. You may call it a casserole or a hotdish depending on how you grew up, I just call them amazing! My grandma's hotdish has been my favorite ever since I was little. It was the first meal I ever remember getting excited about. I was such a picky eater growing up {sorry mom} and I got so excited about this meal.

This hotdish has evolved over the years as my taste buds have matured. Ah hem :) I've added spice but it is so easy to take away the spice for a more simple but yummy hotdish! Its a great base to start with and play with and adapt to what your family enjoys. For instance you could use tomato soup or cheddar soup instead of  fiesta nacho cheese soup.

I hope you  enjoy this hotdish as much as I do. And just a FYI it is great as leftovers, its like the flavors have time to hang out together and become so much more!

Grandma's Hotdish

1 lb hamburger
1/2 medium onion
3 cups uncooked Wacky Mac Past
1 can Campbells Fiesta Nacho Cheese Soup
1 8 oz can Rotel Tomato Sauce {Note this is SAUCE}
1 8oz can Tomato Sauce 
1- 1.5 c frozen corn
1 Tbs Brown Sugar {my grandma's secret weapon!}
1 c Cheddar or Pepper jack cheese

Brown hamburger and onion. At the same time cook the pasta according to the package. 

Once the hamburger is browned add soup, tomato sauces, corn, and brown sugar. Mix through and them add over drained pasta in 5 qt pan or dutch oven and mix.  Then sprinkle cheese on top and place in preheated oven to 350 degrees.

Bake for 45 minutes until bubbly and cheese is melted.

Source: Adapted from my Grandma Mary's recipe

Thursday, April 4, 2013

BBQ Beef Pockets

Growing up I don't think we ever had a bottle of bbq sauce in the fridge. {Correct me if I'm wrong mom!} I was too picky growing up to ever try the darn stuff so mom probably just kept it out of the house. To me bbq meant sloppy joes, the tomato based ones. It is amazing how my taste buds have changed as I've grown up. 

This recipe is a hearty supper chalk full of bbq flavor. If you are fan a bbq sauce this would be a great supper to try. It is so easy to make and only requires 4 ingredients!  That is a winner in my book. My husband and I really liked the left overs, which I was afraid they wouldn't be as good the second day. Oh cont-rare my friend I thought it was even better! 

BBQ Beef Pockets1 lb beef
3/4 bottle (18 oz) your favorite BBQ sauce (I used sweet baby rays, will try famous daves next time)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 box refrigerated Pillsbury Pie Crust

Brown hamburger until no longer pink. Drain off any grease. 
Next add bbq sauce until meat is well coated. You don't want them to be dry!
Roll out both pie crusts. Cut both pie crusts into quarters. You will have 8 sections when done.{They make big pockets, if you want smaller pockets cut the dough into smaller sections}
Take one quarter of the pie crust and spoon on beef mixture. If you are doing just 4 pockets put 1/4 of beef mixture on. Sprinkle on desired amount of cheddar cheese. 
Place a second quarter of pie crust on top of beef filled pie crust and pinch the seams all the way around until it is sealed. 
Repeat these steps until you have 4 beef pockets. When finished make 3 slits on each pocket so the steam can escape.
Bake at 425 degrees for 20-25 minutes until tops are golden brown.


Source: Chef In Training