Monday, November 30, 2009

Grandma Sandy's Chicken Broccoli Casserole

This was a family favorite when I was growing up. Now my family loves it. Dallin and Amanda cheered last night when they found out what we were having. Emily doesn't like anything with sauce, so she was only excited when I picked the broccoli and chicken out of the sauce. Serve this with brown rice and a nice green salad. I have modified my Mom's original recipe to make it a little more healthy.

Chicken Broccoli Casserole

Cover the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan with bite size pieces of broccoli (about 2 cups) (I buy the big bag of pre-cut and washed broccoli from Costco. You still need to cut it up a bit.)

Put about 2 Cups, or 2 chicken breast of cooked chopped chicken on top of the broccoli

Mix in a bowl:

1/2 Cup lite Mayo
1 Can cream of chicken
1-2 teaspoons curry
1 T lemon juice

Put mixture on top of broccoli and chicken

Sprinkle with 1/2 Cup grated cheddar cheese

Sprinkle 1/2 bread crumbs on top of the cheese (just cut up some bread)

Drizzle 1 Tablespoon melted butter on top

Bake in 375 degree oven for about 20 minutes. Do longer if you like your broccoli mussy.

Serve over Brown rice

Spinach Salad with pears, pinenuts and white cheddar

2 Cups baby spinach
1 pears diced
1/4 Cup pinenuts toasted lightly (in a frying pan til you see brown on them)
Couple Tablespoons of roughly chopped aged white cheddar

Balsamic dressing

3 T olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix well and drizzle over salad just before serving (you may not need all of the dressing)

The week of meal ideas!

Are you tired of thinking of food ideas for your family? I am here to help! This week I am going to post each meal we eat, and along with it, I will give you tips on how to make your meals healthier for your kids. To start out, I wanted to share with you what we had last night. Orange Chicken and brown rice with stir fried veggies, and Asian salad.

First, the orange chicken. This is from a frozen box. It is from Costco, and it contains 2 packs of chicken. Just heat in 400 degree oven for 20 minutes and put sauce on top. It is called Mandarin Orange Chicken, By Crazy Cuizine. It is less than 30% fat (if you bake and not fry it). The ingredient pass my test (no trans fat or high-fructose corn syrup).

Before you cook the chicken, be sure you start your brown rice. Remember that brown rice takes a whole hour to cook! Do twice as much water as rice. I have tried brown rice in the rice cooker, and I have not gotten it to work. Any ideas?

Stir Fry

  • carrots
  • purple cabbage
  • purple onion
  • green beans (mine were frozen)
  • other veggies you have on hand (broccoli, asparagus, zucchini . . .)
Heat 1 T of canola oil in non-stick pan. Add carrots and cook on medium heat for 5 minutes. Then add onions and cook 2 more minutes. Add green beans and cabbage and cook for 2 more minutes. Add about 1 Tablespoon of the orange sauce from the chicken packet.

Asian salad

  • Baby spinach (or any lettuce)
  • can of mandarin oranges
  • grated or slice carrots
  • purple onion (green onion is even better)
  • purple cabbage sliced thinly
  • (other things that go well are broccoli in small pieces, snow peas, and red pepper)
Make a dressing with about 3 T canola oil, 1 T rice wine vinegar, 1 T sugar, 1 t soy sauce, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Tip of the day:

When your kids want seconds of the yummy orange chicken, have them eat 3 bits of veggies first. Explain to your kids that you can eat something you don't like, and that it is good to try foods to be sure that you still don't like that food. Remember, you are in charge. Most of all, the parent also needs to finish their veggies before taking seconds of something. If your kids are out of the habit of asking before they take seconds, keep the non-veggies off of the table and up at the counter so you have more control.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Cheesy Vegetable Soup

This has been a family favorite for years. It is a great way to get your kids to eat veggies that they normally don't like (unless they are like Emily, she only likes veggies plain with no sauce on them). I got this recipe from my mother-in-law. It is very fast and easy to make.

Vegetable Cheese Soup

1 small bunch broccoli, cut in small pieces

1 onion, diced

1 cup diced carrots

1 cup diced potato

1 cup cauliflower, cut into bite size pieces

2 10 ¾ ounce cans chicken broth

2 tsp or cubes bouillon

2 cups milk

¼ cup flour

3 cups grated Cheddar cheese (or less)

1 tsp dry mustard

1/8 tsp cayenne

In a large pan, combine diced vegetables, bouillon and broth (I reserve broccoli tops and add towards the end). Simmer for 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. In a medium bowl, mix milk with flour; blend until smooth. Gradually add milk mixture to vegetables, stirring constantly. Add grated cheese, dry mustard and cayenne pepper. Simmer until cheese melts.

I usually double this recipe

Sorry there is no picture. I will make it again this week and add it.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Healthy Fries

I love these Potato Fries. They are easy to make, but they do take some time to bake. Tonight we are having Turkey burgers and these homemade fries. The recipe isn't exact, so feel free to use your imagination.

Uses about 1 medium potato per person.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees

Wash potatoes

Slice potatoes length-wise into 8 wedges (leave skin on)

Put potato wedges in a bowl. Drizzle on about 2 Tablespoons olive oil or canola oil and toss to coat.

Sprinkle with the following seasonings:

  • Garlic Powder
  • Paprika
  • Rosemary
  • Onion Powder
  • Season Salt
  • Salt if you don't do season salt
  • Pepper
Bake in 450 degree oven for about 30-40 minutes (until baked through). Serve with ketchup. My kids love these. Hope your kids do too!

Lay potatoes in a row on a baking sheet skin side down.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween Candy

I imagine that your house is like mine right now. . . Candy everywhere! I came up with one fun thing to do with your Candy this year that does not involve hiding it, or eating it. I got this idea from one of my favorite magazines, Family Fun. What is it? You experiment with it! Use any candy that your kids don't like, or they are willing to play with instead of eat. We mostly microwaved them to see what they looked like melted (it reminded me of that baby shower game where you guess the melted candy bar in the diaper). Dallin added milk to his, and Emily added water to hers. They had fun doing it. Now I just need to come up with more games. Maybe I can see if they want to see who can throw the candy off the deck the farthest? What are some of your ideas. Leave a comment.