Saturday, April 5, 2014

Beef Enchiladas with Red Sauce

As I established in my post for chicken enchiladas with a green chili and sour cream sauce, I LOVE enchiladas! These enchiladas are filled with ground beef, green chilies, cheddar cheese, black olives, and green onions. They are then wrapped in corn tortillas and rolled in a red enchilada sauce. There are so many great flavors all wrapped up into these little enchiladas! They are perfect for a Mexican fiesta!

To make roughly 3 servings (about 10 enchiladas) you will need:
  • 8 oz. GROUND BEEF (I used 80/20, but feel free to use whatever your normally use!)
  • 1 small ONION, chopped
  • 1 (4 oz.) can GREEN CHILIES
  • about 10 CORN TORTILLAS
  • 1 & 1/2 cup CHEDDAR CHEESE, grated
  • 1 (2.25 oz.) can BLACK OLIVES, chopped
  • 4-6 GREEN ONIONS, chopped
  • 1/4 cup CILANTRO, chopped
For the sauce you will need:
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp of CANOLA OIL
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp FLOUR
  • 1 (14 oz.) can of ENCHILADA SAUCE
  • 1 cup CHICKEN BROTH
  • 1/4 tsp SALT
  • 1/4 tsp PEPPER
  • 1 Tbs FRESH CILANTRO, chopped

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Whisk the oil and flour together in a medium sized saucepan. Then add the enchilada sauce, chicken broth, salt, pepper, and cilantro. Let the sauce simmer for about 20 minutes while you cook the beef.  


Saute the onion in a skillet until they just begin to turn translucent, then add the ground beef. Cook the beef until done and then stir in the green chilies. 


Heat up either a skillet or a large griddle and spray on a little cooking spray. Cook the corn tortillas for about 2 minutes on each side in order to make them easier to fill. (Doing this will prevent some of the cracking that usually happens when you try to roll corn tortillas.)



Once the sauce is done simmering, pour a little bit into the bottom of your baking dish so that it just coats the bottom. (I used a 10 x 10 inch pan, but you could use a 9 x 13 inch pan)


Now it's time to build the enchiladas! Once the tortillas have been cooked on each side, dip them into the red sauce. Make sure that the whole tortilla is coated! Then  layer on the beef mixture, cheese, black olives, green onions, and cilantro!


Next, roll up the tortilla and lay it in the baking pan seam side down! You may need to use a toothpick to keep it from unrolling until you get a few enchiladas into the pan.


Repeat this process until you either use up all of the beef mixture or fill you pan!


Pour the extra sauce over the top of the enchiladas...


...and top with any extra cheese, green onions, or black olives you have left!


Bake the enchiladas for 20 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly!


Top with any extra cilantro and then serve it up!










Beef Enchiladas with Red Sauce

Ingredients:

To make roughly 3 servings (about 10 enchiladas) you will need:
  • 8 oz. GROUND BEEF (I used 80/20, but feel free to use whatever your normally use!)
  • 1 small ONION, chopped
  • 1 (4 oz.) can GREEN CHILIES
  • about 10 CORN TORTILLAS
  • 1 & 1/2 cup CHEDDAR CHEESE, grated
  • 1 (2.25 oz.) can BLACK OLIVES, chopped
  • 4-6 GREEN ONIONS, chopped
  • 1/4 cup CILANTRO, chopped
For the sauce you will need:
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp of CANOLA OIL
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp FLOUR
  • 1 (14 oz.) can of ENCHILADA SAUCE
  • 1 cup CHICKEN BROTH
  • 1/4 tsp SALT
  • 1/4 tsp PEPPER
  • 1 Tbs FRESH CILANTRO, chopped

    Directions:
    1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. 
    2. Whisk the oil and flour together in a medium sized saucepan. Then add the enchilada sauce, chicken broth, salt, pepper, and cilantro. Let the sauce simmer for about 20 minutes while you cook the beef.  
    3. Saute the onion in a skillet until they just begin to turn translucent, then add the ground beef. Cook the beef until done and then stir in the green chilies. 
    4. Heat up either a skillet or a large griddle and spray on a little cooking spray. Cook the corn tortillas for about 2 minutes on each side in order to make them easier to fill.
      • Doing this will prevent some of the cracking that usually happens when you try to roll corn tortillas.
    5. Once the sauce is done simmering, pour a little bit into the bottom of your baking dish so that it just coats the bottom. 
      • I used a 10 x 10 inch pan, but you could use a 9 x 13 inch pan.
    6. Once the tortillas have been cooked on each side, dip them into the red sauce. Make sure that the whole tortilla is coated! 
    7. Layer the beef mixture, cheese, black olives, green onions, and cilantro onto the coated tortilla.
    8. Next, roll up the tortilla and lay it seam side down in the baking pan! 
      • You may need to use a toothpick to keep it from unrolling until you get a few enchiladas into the pan.
    9. Repeat this process until you either use up all of the beef mixture or fill you pan!
    10. Pour the extra sauce over the top of the enchiladas and top with any extra cheese, green onions, or black olives you have left!
    11. Bake the enchiladas for 20 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly!
    12. Top with any extra cilantro and then serve it up!



      I adapted this recipe from the following blog: http://jamiecooksitup.net/2011/09/ground-beef-enchiladas/

      Wednesday, April 2, 2014

      Chocolate Zucchini Bread



      It is no secret that cakes and breads are not exactly "healthy." This is a problem because I love to bake and I especially love to eat what I bake! This chocolate zucchini bread is great because it is fluffy, moist, chocolaty, AND relatively healthy! There is absolutely no flour or sugar in this recipe but you would never know it by tasting the bread! I think it actually tastes more like a chocolate cake than a bread!

      To make this chocolate zucchini bread you will need:
      • 1 cup ALMOND BUTTER
      • 3 Tbs HONEY
      • 2 Tbs COCOA POWDER
      • 2 LARGE EGGS
      • 1/8 tsp SALT
      • 1 Tbs VANILLA
      • 1 tsp APPLE CIDER VINEGAR
      • 1/2 tsp BAKING SODA
      • 1 cup ZUCCHINI, shredded (squeeze as much of the excess water out as possible)
      • Optional: 1/3 cup NUTS (I used pecans)

      Start off by preheating your oven to 400 degrees F. Then put the almond butter, honey, cocoa powder, eggs, salt, and vanilla into a medium bowl. Use a handheld mixer to blend on a medium speed for 2 minutes.

      Add the vinegar and baking soda to the mixture and blend for another 30 seconds.


      Next, fold in the zucchini and the nuts with a spatula.


      It won't exactly look pretty... but I promise it tastes good!


      Pour the batter into a loaf pan that has been lined with parchment paper and sprayed with cooking spray.


      Bake the bread for 25-35 minutes depending on how much water you were able to get out of the zucchini.

      Note: I would recommend checking the bread with a toothpick every few minutes after the first 25 minutes until it comes out clean.


      You can serve it warm or at room temperature!


      I cut my bread into pieces that were 3/4 to 1 inch thick which gave me about 10 slices.






      Chocolate Zucchini Bread

      Ingredients:
      • 1 cup ALMOND BUTTER
      • 3 Tbs HONEY
      • 2 Tbs COCOA POWDER
      • LARGE EGGS
      • 1/8 tsp SALT
      • 1 Tbs VANILLA
      • 1 tsp APPLE CIDER VINEGAR
      • 1/2 tsp BAKING SODA
      • 1 cup ZUCCHINI, shredded (squeeze as much of the excess water out as possible)
      • Optional: 1/3 cup NUTS (I used pecans)
        Directions:
        1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F
        2. Put the almond butter, honey, cocoa powder, eggs, salt, and vanilla into a medium bowl. Use a handheld mixer to blend on a medium speed for 2 minutes.
        3. Add the vinegar and baking soda to the mixture and blend for another 30 seconds.
        4. Next, fold in the zucchini and the nuts with a spatula.
        5. Pour the batter into a loaf pan that has been lined with parchment paper and sprayed with cooking spray
        6. Bake the bread for 25-35 minutes depending on how much water you were able to get out of the zucchini. Note: I would recommend checking the bread with a toothpick every few minutes after the first 25 minutes until it comes out clean.



          I adapted this recipe from the following blog: http://wholelifestylenutrition.com/recipes/organic-chocolate-zucchini-bread-recipe/

          Wednesday, March 26, 2014

          Shrimp Scampi


          This is my husband's recipe for shrimp scampi and it is delicious! This recipe is also super easy and quick to make!

          To make 2 servings of shrimp scampi you will need:
          • 6 oz. PASTA (we used fettuccine)
          • 12 oz. SHRIMP
          • 3 Tbs UNSALTED BUTTER
          • 2 Tbs OLIVE OIL
          • 1/2 medium ONION, chopped
          • 2 cloves GARLIC, minced
          • 1/8 tsp RED PEPPER (feel free to add more if you like spicy food!)
          • 1/2 tsp SALT
          • 1/4 tsp PEPPER
          • 1 LEMON or 3 Tbs LEMON JUICE
          • 1/4 cup WHITE WINE
          • Optional: PARSLEY, to garnish

          Start off by putting a pot of water on to boil. Once the water comes to a boil, add the pasta and cook according to the directions on the box (about 10 minutes). 

          Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a skillet and then add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Once the butter is melted and the oil is hot, saute the onion and garlic until the onion starts to get translucent. Add the red pepper, salt, and pepper.


          Next, add the shrimp, wine, and lemon juice.


          Stir everything together and bring the contents to a simmer. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the shrimp turns pink.


          Add the cooked pasta and toss the it in the sauce!


          Serve and garnish with chopped parsley!


          Yum!






          Shrimp Scampi

          Ingredients:
          • 6 oz. PASTA (we used fettuccine)
          • 12 oz. SHRIMP
          • 3 Tbs UNSALTED BUTTER
          • 2 Tbs OLIVE OIL
          • 1/2 medium ONION, chopped
          • 2 cloves GARLIC, minced
          • 1/8 tsp RED PEPPER (feel free to add more if you like spicy food!)
          • 1/2 tsp SALT
          • 1/4 tsp PEPPER
          • LEMON or 3 Tbs LEMON JUICE
          • 1/4 cup WHITE WINE
          • Optional: PARSLEY, to garnish
            Directions:
            1. Start off by putting a pot of water on to boil. Once the water comes to a boil, add the pasta and cook according to the directions on the box (about 10 minutes). 
            2. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a skillet and then add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Once the butter is melted and the oil is hot, saute the onion and garlic until the onion starts to get translucent. 
            3. Add the red pepper, salt, and pepper.
            4. Next, add the shrimp, wine, and lemon juice. 
            5. Stir everything together and bring the contents to a simmer. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the shrimp turns pink.
            6. Add the cooked pasta and toss the it in the sauce.
            7. Serve and garnish with chopped parsley!




              Monday, March 24, 2014

              Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs



              Lately my husband and I have been trying to focus on eating healthier and cutting back on carbohydrates. One meal that we both loved was this spaghetti squash with meatballs. It is basically spaghetti and meatballs, but instead of using spaghetti we used spaghetti squash. Now, I'm not going to lie to you and say that it tastes just like regular spaghetti because it doesn't. It isn't pasta, it's a vegetable! Don't let that keep you from making this dish though, it turned out delicious! The flavors of the tomato sauce paired really well with the flavor of the spaghetti squash! We liked it so much we are making it again this week!

              This recipe will make about 16 meatballs which I would consider 4 servings. To make the meatballs you will need:
              • 3/4 lb. GROUND BEEF
              • 2 cloves GARLIC, minced
              • 6 Tbs PLAIN BREAD CRUMBS
              • LARGE EGG
              • 6 Tbs PARMESAN CHEESE, shredded
              • 2 Tbs FRESH PARSLEY, minced
              • pinch of SALT and PEPPER
              • splash of MILK
              • 3-4 Tbs OLIVE OIL
              To make the sauce you will need:
              • 1/2 YELLOW ONION, chopped
              • 2 cloves GARLIC, minced
              • 1/2 tsp SALT
              • 1/2 tsp PEPPER
              • 28 oz. CRUSHED TOMATOES 
              • Optional: 1/4 cup WHITE WINE
              • 1/4 tsp SUGAR
              • 1/2 tsp SALT
              • 1/2 tsp PEPPER
              • 2 Tbs FRESH PARSLEY, minced
              You will also need:
              • 2 medium SPAGHETTI SPAGHETTI SQUASHES (1/2 a squash per serving) 

              Start off by mixing together the ground beef, garlic, bread crumbs, egg, Parmesan cheese, parsley, salt, pepper, and milk in a medium bowl.


              Don't be afraid, get your hands in there and mix it all up!


              Once the mixture is well combined roll out balls that are about 1 & 1/2 inches in diameter and place them on a cookie sheet. Once all of the meatball are rolled out, place the cookie sheet in the freezer for about 10 minutes. Doing this helps them stay together better while you brown them. 


              Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, sear the meatballs in the pot, turn to brown. (You are not trying to cook the meatballs just yet, you are just trying to get a good sear all over.) 


              Place the meatballs on a paper towel once they have a good sear in order to drain off any excess oil. 


              Into the large pot with oil, add the onion and garlic and cook for a few minutes until they start to to turn translucent.



              Then add the crushed tomatoes, wine, salt, pepper, and parsley. Stir and cook for about 5 minutes over medium heat.



              Then add the meatballs to the sauce and cook for another 30 minutes. Stir gently as to not break up the meatballs. If the sauce starts to get too thick you can add more crushed tomatoes if you have them or else a little bit of water.



              While the meatballs are cooking prepare the spaghetti squash. This way all of the food will be ready at once!

              Pierce the skin of the squash several times with a sharp knife in order to allow the steam to escape (Basically stab it a few times, but be careful! The skin is very tough!).


              If you choose to bake it, preheat your oven to 375 degrees F and then bake it on a cookie sheet for 1 hour. OR you could take the quicker route and put it on a plate and microwave it for 10-12 minutes making sure to rotate the squash half-way through. Your choice! The squash is done cooking when you can pierce the squash with your knife fairly easily.

              After cooking your squash, cut it open lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. 


              Then take a fork and scrape the stringy, spaghetti-like squash out.


              Transfer the squash to a bowl... 


              and top with the sauce and meatballs! 



              Then sit back and enjoy!





              Spaghetti Squash & Meatballs

              Ingredients:

              To make the meatballs you will need:
              • 3/4 lb. GROUND BEEF
              • 2 cloves GARLIC, minced
              • 6 Tbs PLAIN BREAD CRUMBS
              • LARGE EGG
              • 6 Tbs PARMESAN CHEESE, shredded
              • 2 Tbs FRESH PARSLEY, minced
              • pinch of SALT and PEPPER
              • splash of MILK
              • 3-4 Tbs OLIVE OIL
              To make the sauce you will need:
              • 1/2 YELLOW ONION, chopped
              • 2 cloves GARLIC, minced
              • 1/2 tsp SALT
              • 1/2 tsp PEPPER
              • 28 oz. CRUSHED TOMATOES 
              • Optional: 1/4 cup WHITE WINE
              • 1/4 tsp SUGAR
              • 1/2 tsp SALT
              • 1/2 tsp PEPPER
              • 2 Tbs FRESH PARSLEY, minced
              You will also need:
              • 2 medium SPAGHETTI SPAGHETTI SQUASHES (1/2 a squash per serving) 
              Directions:
              1. Start off by mixing together the ground beef, garlic, bread crumbs, egg, Parmesan cheese, parsley, salt, pepper, and milk in a medium bowl. Don't be afraid, get your hands in there and mix it all up!
              2. Once the mixture is well combined, roll out balls that are about 1 & 1/2 inches in diameter and place them on a cookie sheet. Once all of the meatball are rolled out, place the cookie sheet in the freezer for about 10 minutes
              3. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, sear the meatballs in the pot, turn to brown. (You are not trying to cook the meatballs just yet, you are just trying to get a good sear all over.) 
              4. Place the meatballs on a paper towel once they have a good sear in order to drain off any excess oil. 
              5. Into the large pot with oil, add the onion and garlic and cook for a few minutes until they start to to turn translucent. Then add the crushed tomatoes, wine, salt, pepper, and parsley. Stir and cook for about 5 minutes over medium heat. 
              6. Then add the meatballs to the sauce and cook for another 30 minutes. Stir gently as to not break up the meatballs. (If the sauce starts to get too thick you can add more crushed tomatoes if you have them or else a little bit of water.) While the meatballs are cooking prepare the spaghetti squash.
              7. Pierce the skin of the squash several times with a sharp knife in order to allow the steam to escape while cooking (Basically stab it a few times, but be careful! The skin is very tough!). The squash is done cooking when you can pierce the squash with your knife fairly easily.
                • If you choose to bake it, preheat your oven to 375 degrees F and then bake it on a cookie sheet for 1 hour. 
                • If you choose to microwave it, put it on a plate and heat it for 10-12 minutes making sure to rotate the squash half-way through.
              8. After cooking your squash, cut it open lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. 
              9. Then take a fork and scrape the stringy, spaghetti-like squash out.
              10. Serve the meatballs and sauce over the spaghetti squash and top with Parmesan cheese and fresh basil! Then sit back and enjoy!


                  Saturday, March 22, 2014

                  Spinach Alfredo Pizza


                  One of my favorite types of pizza is spinach alfredo. Even as a kid I loved it! When my family would go out to dinner at a pizza buffet restaurant I would always head for the spinach alfredo. It might sound weird at first, but it is so good! In just one bite you get the creamy, cheesy flavor of the alfredo sauce with baked spinach and even more more cheese on top of a softy and chewy crust. Yum!

                  To make this pizza you will need:
                  • PIZZA DOUGH (click here to get the recipe I use!)
                  • 2 Tbs BUTTER
                  • 1/4 cup HEAVY CREAM
                  • 1/2 cup PARMESAN CHEESE, grated
                  • 2-3 cups of FRESH SPINACH
                  • 1 & 1/2 cup MOZZARELLA CHEESE
                  Start off by preparing the dough. If you decide to use the recipe that I use, follow the directions at this link. Once the dough is ready, prepare the sauce. Now, you could just use a jar of store bought alfredo sauce but I like to make my own (It's really easy!). To do this I melt the butter in a small saucepan, then stir in the heavy cream, and lastly whisk in the parmesan cheese. Boom! Alfredo Sauce!


                  Next, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F, roll out your dough, and spread the sauce on top!


                  Then layer on the spinach! Don't be afraid to add a lot (the picture below is not what I would consider "a lot," I just forgot to take a picture after we added more). The spinach will shrink up a lot in the oven!


                  Lastly, sprinkle the mozzarella cheese on top and pop it in the oven! Bake for 15-20 minutes depending on how thinly you rolled out the dough.



                  Mmmmm just look at that cheesy goodness!


                  Slice up the pizza and dig in!






                  Spinach Alfredo Pizza

                  Ingredients:
                  • PIZZA DOUGH (click here to get the recipe I use!)
                  • 2 Tbs BUTTER
                  • 1/4 cup HEAVY CREAM
                  • 1/2 cup PARMESAN CHEESE, grated
                  • 2-3 cups of FRESH SPINACH
                  • 1 & 1/2 cup MOZZARELLA CHEESE
                    Directions:
                    1. Start off by preparing the dough. If you decide to use the recipe that I use, follow the direction at this link
                    2. Once the dough is ready, prepare the sauce. Now, you could just use a jar of store bought alfredo sauce but I like to make my own (It's really easy!). To do this I melt the butter in a small saucepan, stir in the heavy cream, and lastly whisk in the parmesan cheese. Boom! Alfredo Sauce!
                    3. Next, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F, roll out your dough, and spread the sauce on top!
                    4. Then layer on the spinach! Don't be afraid to add a lot. The spinach will shrink up a lot in the oven!
                    5. Lastly, sprinkle the mozzarella cheese on top and pop it in the oven! Bake for 15-20 minutes depending on how thinly you rolled out the dough.
                    6. Slice up the pizza and dig in!