Thursday, February 27, 2014

Chicken and Dumplin' Soup...oh, so good! WIth yet another cold snap, this will warm your heart and soul :)


2 packs chicken tenders, cut into bite-size pieces

1 family-size cream of chicken soup (26 ounces)

2 teaspoons each of salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder

3 tablespoons chicken bouillon granules                       

1 (14-ounce) can chicken broth

1 bag frozen peas and carrots or package of mixed vegetables

1 cup potatoes, cubed (optional)


2 ¼ cups Bisquick

2/3 cup whole milk

2 teaspoons sage

1 teaspoon garlic salt

1 teaspoon salt and pepper

Place the chicken tenders in a large pot and put enough water in the pot just to cover the tenders.  You can also season the chicken with salt and pepper before adding the water.  Bring to a boil and as soon as it comes to a boil, turn down the burner as low as it will go, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.  Next add the cream of chicken soup, seasonings, peas, carrots and potatoes and simmer for about 15-30 minutes.  Add all the ingredients together for the dumplings and drop by very small teaspoons or even a baby spoon  into the soup.  Take a fork and gently separate the dumplings as they are cooking so that they don’t form one big dumpling J  Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes then place the lid back on the pot and cook another 10 or so minutes on very low.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

I was in a restaurant in downtown Atlanta this past weekend, and a waiter passed by me with a gorgeous shrimp cocktail. I thought to myself, "I can make that at home!" It's such a simple thing to put together and I think it's an absolutely gorgeous appetizer! My family felt very special when I made this for them :)


16 to 20 jumbo shrimp with shells on (this is about  1lb.)

1 (3-ounce) box Zatarain’s extra spicy crab boil in a bag

1 large lemon, quartered

4 tablespoons salt

2 tablespoons vinegar

1 cup zesty cocktail sauce

2 heaping teaspoons prepared horseradish

Parsley and lemon for garnish

In a large pot, place 4 quarts of water, crab boil bag, salt, lemon (squeeze juice of quartered lemon pieces into the water and throw the quarters in the water) and vinegar.  Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium and let simmer for about 15 minutes.  This will really give the water a great flavor for the shrimp.  Meanwhile, mix the cocktail sauce and horseradish together and place in the fridge.  Next, place the shrimp into the boiling water and boil for exactly one minute.  Remove from heat, and cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid for 10 minutes.  Pour water and shrimp from the pot into a large colander.  Drain well and discard crab boil bag and lemon.   Once they cool down enough to touch, carefully peel each shrimp.  At this point you are ready to assemble.  I prefer my shrimp chilled so I place them in the fridge for a little while or leave overnight.  Take 3 martini or wine glasses, place a few tablespoons of sauce into each glass and place parsley on top of sauce for garnish.  Assemble shrimp around the rim of the glass and place a lemon wedge on the glass for garnish.   This recipe yields about 6 – 8 shrimp per person, so I can get 3 servings out of this recipe.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Tortellini and Italian Sausage soup..this one of my favorite soup recipes! It's so hearty, delicious and filling! You can also substiute turkey italian sausage for less fat...serve with a nice salad and piping hot French bread for a great meal! :)

Tortellini  & Italian Sausage Soup


1 lb. Italian Sausage

1 cup chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, minced

5 cups beef broth

½ cup water

½ cup dry red wine or water

1 can petite-diced tomatoes

1 cup sliced carrots

1 t. dried basil

1 t. dried oregano

1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

3 zucchini, sliced

8-ounces refrigerated cheese tortellini

3 T. chopped fresh parsley

1 medium green bell pepper, chopped

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese


Take the casing off sausage and brown whole on all sides in a black-iron or heavy-duty skillet.  Remove sausage from skillet and place on paper towels to drain, reserving drippings from sausage.  Transfer drippings into a large soup pot, and cook onions and garlic in drippings until tender.  Slice sausage and it to the onion mixture, along with broth, water, wine, tomatoes, carrots, basil, oregano, and tomato sauce and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.  Stir in zucchini, tortellini, parsley and bell pepper.  Cover and simmer 25 minutes or until tortellini are tender.  Sprinkle each serving with Parmesan cheese.


Monday, February 3, 2014

Fried rice at much healthier for you!

Melissa’s Fried Rice

2 tablespoons real butter

2 tablespoons sesame oil

1 small onion, chopped

1 small bag frozen peas and carrots

2 eggs

1 teaspoon salt and pepper

3 tablespoons soy sauce

2 cups cooked white rice ( I like to cook my rice in the morning and refrigerate it for about 6 hours)

In a large wok or electric skillet, heat butter and sesame oil for about  1 minute.  Add onion, peas and carrots and cook on high for about 6 to 8 minutes.  Push to the side and add eggs, salt and pepper.  Cook eggs for 1 to 2 minutes or until scrambled.  Add rice and soy sauce.  Mix all together and cook on high for an additional 3 to 4 minutes. 



Sunday, February 2, 2014

My pecan crusted salmon....oh, so delicious!

Baked Salmon with Pecan Crunch Topping

4 salmon filets

Salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder

2 tablespoons course ground Dijon mustard

2 tablespoon real butter

1 tablespoon honey

¼ cup seasoned breadcrumbs

¼ cup chopped pecans

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Pat salmon dry and season with salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder.  Place the filets, skin-side down, in a baking dish.  Mix together the mustard, butter and honey and spoon over the filets.  In a small bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs, pecans and parsley.  Spoon this over the filets as well.  Bake in a 450 oven for 12 minutes or until the fish flakes.  Delicious served with couscous and a nice salad.  Enjoy J