Cheesy chive potatoes

5 Large yukon gold potatoes diced into 1" pieces
1/2 medium white onion chopped
3 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
2 tbsp minced chives
1 tsp seasoned salt
1/4 tsp pepper
3 tbsp butter
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
crumbled bacon to taste

Preheat oven to 450. Coat a baking medium to small size baking dish with non stick cooking spray. Combine the first 6 ingredients and then top with butter. Cover and bake for 45 minutes. Remove lid and top with Mozzarella & cheddar cheese. Put back in oven under the broiler on low until cheese bubbles. Crumble bacon on top & serve. For extra flavor combine ranch dressing seasoning with sour cream.


Pasilla Pepper Quesidillas (vegetarian)

4 medium flour tortillas
2 pounds monteray jack cheese shredded
2 medium tomatoes diced
3 Pasilla peppers sliced into 1/2 strips
1/3 white onion halved & sliced
2 cloves garlic minced
1 can mild diced green chilis
1/2 cup vegetable stock
1 tsp salt
2 tsp olive oil

In large pan heat oil over medium heat. Add in onions, peppers & tomatoes. Mix and cook for about 3 minutes. Add in stock, diced chilis & garlic. Increase heat to medium high and boil until most of the liquid is gone & peppers are soft.

Heat a non stick pan over medium low heat. I prefer to spray the outside of my tortilla with a little bit of vegetable spray it crisps up better. Add cheese to one half, place 1/4 of the mixture on the cheese, top with more cheese and then fold. Cook until brown and flip. Make sure the liquid is mostly cooked out so you don't get soggy quesidillas.

Chicken would be a nice addition to this for meat eaters. We ate it just like that, no sour cream or anything needed. I prefer Monteray Jack cheese to mozzarella for quesidillas it adds another layer of flavor. Also if you are using chicken you could sub in chicken stock.


Portobello mushroom burgers

2 large portabello mushrooms
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
salt & pepper
1/2 cup mayo
1.5 garlic cloves shredded with microplane or VERY finely chopped
favorite burger toppings
Generous amounts of olive oil
2 buns

Turn oven onto broil on low. Scoop inside brown ribbing out of mushroom. Coat both sides very generous with olive oil and seasonings (if you have ranch powder BONUS). Place under broiler for about 15 minutes per side. Combine garlic into mayo and allow to sit until burgers cook. It adds a bit of kick, and an amazing flavor (think baseball park garlic fries). Place buns under broiler inside facing up (this allows for a softer outside that won't hurt your mouth). Generously slather buns with mayo. If you are my husband you ruin it with ketchup. Preferred toppings are lettuce, tomato, onion and avocado if it is in season. Swiss cheese would make a great addition! Add mushroom put on top cut and die from garlicy goodness.

Crispy cheddar lays baked chicken

4 cups Lays cheddar sour cream potato chips crushed up
5 pieces of chicken bone in skin on
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tbsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 450. Also heat a large oven safe skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil to pan. Beat eggs and mix in buttermilk garlic powder, pepper & salt. Roll chicken in egg mixture then roll into crushed up chips. Place skin side down in pan. Cook only for about 2 minutes just to crisp it all up. Transfer to oven and cook uncovered about 20 minutes or until chicken juice runs clear when poked.

Vegetarian no noodle lasagna

1 Medium zucchini sliced length wise 1/4" thick
1 medium squash diced
2 cups shredded mozzarella
12 carrot shredded
1 cup spinach rough chopped
2 cups mushrooms diced
1/2 medium white onion diced
1 jar your favorite pasta sauce
1 clove of garlic roughly chopped
1tsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 350. Generously coat a deep baking dish with Pam cooking spray. Heat a pan over medium heat and add oil. Add in mushrooms, onions & squash. Sauté for about 3 minutes. Add in garlic & spinach and sauté until spinach is wilted. Put about 2 tbsp sauce in the bottom of your pan to prevent sticking. Place a layer of zucchini "noodles" over sauce. Add more sauce then a couple spoonfuls of your veggie mixture followed with 1/3 of your cheese. Lather rinse repeat. The last layer should be only zucchini "noodles, sauce and then copeous amounts of cheese. Bake 20 minutes or until cheese is all bubbly and delicious.


How too's

Sometimes even I get confused with food terms. Chop, dice, mince, saute, bake, broil etc. I thought I would post some photos and definitions. Obviously chop is my favorite because IT IS IRREGULAR. I don't love having to cut stuff into uniform pieces although some recipes do need to be cubed or diced so they can cook at the same speed. Every time I cut stuff in odd sizes or not uniform my husband tells me that "insert important chef name here" would have my head. I always reply, "baby it's rustic." I hope the terms below are helpful to you. I will do my best to use appropriate terms and tell you when something NEEDS to be cut uniformly.

Cooking terms

Sauté, Pan Fry, or Stir Fry

To cook food quickly (for just a few minutes), in a small amount of fat (oil, butter, etc.), in a sauté pan or wok over direct heat. Foods that are commonly sautéed include meats, poultry, and vegetables.

To heat a liquid until bubbles break the surface (212 °F at sea level, lower at altitude). Boiling is a common way to cook foods such as pasta, sauces, and vegetables.

To cook food gently in liquid at a temperature that is just below the boiling point so that tiny bubbles just begin to break the surface. Foods are typically brought to boil over high heat, and then the heat is reduced to simmer with a lid on the pan/pot to finish the cooking. Foods that are commonly simmered are sauces, rice and some other grains, and dried beans.

To cook for a short period of time over high heat at the beginning or end of cooking, often to enhance flavor and texture, and create a nice cooked look. Browning is usually done on the stovetop, but also may be achieved in a broiler. Foods that are typically browned include meats, casseroles, and anything that needs quick melting and crisping on top.

To cook food in an oven, thereby surrounding it with dry heat. To ensure an accurate cooking temperature, it can be helpful to use an oven thermometer. Many ovens bake either hotter or cooler than their gauges read. Foods that are commonly baked include seafood, meats, casseroles, vegetables, and baked goods (breads, cakes, pies, etc.).

To cook food directly under or above a very hot heat source (~500 °F). Food can be broiled in an oven, directly under the gas or electric heat source, or on a barbecue grill (known as "char-broiling") directly over charcoal or gas heat. Foods that are typically broiled include meats, poultry, and seafood.

To cook directly over a heat source on metal racks or rods or on a special grill pan. Meats, poultry, seafood, vegetables, and even some fruits grill beautifully.

Taken from National Heart Lung Blood Institute

How to....cutting terms and photos

Photograph of chopped food.

Photograph of cubed food.

Photograph of diced food.


To cut food with a knife or food processor into fine, medium, or coarse, irregular pieces.


To cut food into uniform pieces, usually ½ inch on all sides.


To cut food into smaller uniform pieces, usually ⅛ to ¼ inch on all sides.

Photograph of minced food. Photograph of sliced food. Photograph of julienned food.


To chop food into tiny, irregular pieces.


To cut food into flat, usually thin slices from larger pieces.


To cut food into thin slices about ⅛ inch thick and about 2 inches long.

Taken from the National Heart, Lung & Blood Institute

Broccoli chicken casseorle

This is the cheapest, easiest, most lazy meal ever, and somehow EVERYONE LOVED IT! It's one of those things where I was at the store, threw 6 things in the basket and prayed.

1 Store bought roasted chicken shredded
2 cups uncooked small shell pasta
2 cups mild shredded cheese shredded
1/2 cup frozen broccoli pieces
1 can cream of mushroom chicken
1 can cream of celery chicken

Preheat oven to 450. Boil pasta. While pasta is boiling mix everything else in a bowl reserving 1/2 cup of cheese. Combine pasta in with remaining ingredients and place in an oven safe baking dish. Cover with remaining cheese and bake for 20 minutes. Serve.

Literally that is it. I told you...cheap, easy LAZY. But really good.


Parmesan sour cream mashies (with lumps please)

8 Medium size red potatoes (not peeled) sliced up
1/2 cup shredded parmesan
2/3 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk

Boil potatoes until soft. Drain then return to pan over low heat and cook for about 1 minute to cook out all excess water. Add in milk & sour cream and begin mashing. Add it Parmesan, mash a little more and serve. Leave in some lumps. These aren't meant to be creamy. Try and share.

Note. I do not salt these because of the cheese. If you want to get UBER indulgent and just wildly blow your mind add in 1/3 cup of cream cheese. Then die and go to Heaven and send me a message thanking me!


Must have meatballs

1 pound extra lean ground beef
1/4 cup Italian croutons mashed to pieces
1 tsp salt
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp Italian seasoning
2 eggs
2 tbsp milk
1 slice white bread ripped up no crust
3 cloves garlic smashed and pasted
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Place meatballs in pan and brown on all sides. Drain on paper towels.

Tonight while cooking this I Googled meatballs and most of the recipes told me to put them in the sauce to finish cooking them. I did this and it made the sauce "different." I make a really good spaghetti sauce and it just changed it all having the the meatballs cooked in it. After discussing it with Rob we decided the proper method of cooking would be to stop after you drain them and just put them on top of the spaghetti sauce after it was cooked and on the pasta! The flavor was excellent though.


Pan roasted chicken with mushroom garlic gravy

5-6 bone in skin on chicken thighs
2 cups chicken stock
1 cup water
1 package mushrooms (chopped up)
3 tbsp unsalted butter
3 tbsp flour
7 cloves garlic chopped
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp salt

In large deep skillet brown chicken on both sides. If you are married to my husband remove one piece of super crispy skin and stick it on a plate for him to dunk in hot sauce. Otherwise the skin should remain on the entire time. Add in chicken stock, salt, pepper and garlic. Simmer for about 15-20 minutes until chicken is cooked through and has clear juices when you poke it. Remove chicken and pour stock and garlic in a separate container. Add mushrooms to pan and cook down until brown. If you like you can put a small amount of cooking spray in the pan so they don't stick but they don't need oil or anything else. Once they brown reduce heat and add in the butter. Once the butter is melted sprinkle in the flour and combine. Cook for about a minute until it is all a golden brown. Don't burn it but you don't want the flour to taste like paste so it needs to cook a little. Crank the heat up to high and pour your liquid and garlic back in, whisking vigorously. It should start to thicken right up. Put the chicken into the gravy reduce heat to low and simmer it for about 2 minutes so it gets all good and coated and the skin absorbs all of the flavor. Then pour it all over a giant helping of mashed potatoes.

Only use the water if your gravy turns out too thick. Gravy is kind of a science. If you don't have the right amount of flour it will either be too runny or too thick. I prefer to err on the side of too thick because I can just add some cream or water too thin it. If it is too thing (I've done this) you have to pour it all back into your container do the butter and flour thing all over again and then mix it all back up again!

Technically cooking the chicken in the broth is poaching it. But since I pan roast it first I used that in the name. I like poaching meat like that though because it stays so moist.