Monthly Archives: July 2014

Chicken Broccoli Casserole

This is the first time I have made this recipe and have altered it from the original.  I continually do that but I know what we like and it is more fun to do it that way.  The end result is interesting.   Just remember don’t stress over this just keep plugging along and discover something new that you have created.

Chop your broccoli into pieces.  Place the broccoli into a pot of water along with the juice of 1/2 lemon, bring to a boil and let it cook for about 3-4 minutes.  Add salt & pepper, after 3 minutes remove from pot.  Place into a bowl and set aside. Fresh veggies are so good at this time of the year.

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Next place your chicken pieces into the same water and cook for 15-20 minutes.

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Let cool in the water.  This will keep the chicken moist.

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After it has cooled, place the chicken into the bowl with broccoli.  I did these steps the day before covered the bowl and placed it into the fridge so it was ready to use when I needed it.

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Next I decided to add these ingredients.  Kale and onions.

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Chop your kale and onions

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Into a pan add 3-5 tablespoons of olive oil.

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Next add your onions and fry until translucent.

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I decided to add my favourite ingredient, grated garlic and fry for a minute.  Next I added the white wine.

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Oh next the kale, yum.

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Fry until the kale turns soft.

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Place your broccoli into an oven proof pan in one layer.  Place the onions, kale and chicken on top of the broccoli with some cheese.

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In the same pan you fried your onions in, add more oil and some butter. I mean how can you go wrong with butter?

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Add flour

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Curry powder

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Stir until well blended.

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Add the chicken broth and wine

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Continue stirring until it starts to thicken.

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Then add then milk, continue stirring adding mayonnaise.

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Pour the sauce over meat mixture.

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Sprinkle with breadcrumbs

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Place in oven to bake.

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When heated through out and bubbling around edges, remove from oven.

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Serve on top of rice.

RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

2-4 Chicken Breasts

1 Large Head Of Broccoli Chopped

2-3 cups Chicken Broth

1-150 ml. Carnation Milk

1 Teaspoon Curry

1/2 Lemon, Juiced

Salt And Pepper To Taste

1 Large Onion, Chopped

1-2 Cloves Garlic, Grated

1 cup Kale, Chopped

1/2-1 cup White Wine

1 Heaping Tablespoon Mayonnaise

1 cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese, Or Cheese Of Your Choice

1-2 Tablespoon Butter

1-2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

PREPARATION  INSTRUCTIONS

Place the broccoli into a large pot of boiling water, along with the juice of 1/2 lemon, bring to a boil and cook 3-4 minutes.  Remove the broccoli, place into a bowl. Add your chicken breasts to the same water bring to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes slightly covered.  Take chicken off the burner and cool in the water.  This will keep the chicken juicy when cooling.  Cut chicken into cubes when cooled, set aside.  Add olive oil to the pan, heat, add onions fry until translucent.  Next add chopped garlic, fry a few minutes and add your kale, cook until softened.

In a oven proof pan place your broccoli, chicken and kale.  Top with cheese.  In the same fry pan that the kale mixture was fried in, add some more olive oil and some butter and fry until butter is melted. Next add the flour, curry powder mix until combined then add your chicken broth and your wine, along with the carnation milk and mayonnaise.  Stirring until it is well combined and it starts to thicken. Pour over meat mixture, sprinkle with bread crumbs and place in oven for about 30-40 minutes. Casserole should be hot through out and bubbling.  Great served with your favourite rice.

 

 

A Wonderful Way To Have Lunch

To many of us think that to enjoy a nice meal or the surroundings we’re in, it has to be a super special occasion.  This isn’t true. All you need is simply to be surrounded by the people you enjoy being with, or just simply to be aware of and enjoy what is around you. That’s what makes it a special occasion.  One that you’ll remember.  You can discover so many wonderful places close to home.

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This is a little cafe that sits on a harbour overlooking the yachts that are docked.  Knowing that it was there, but never going until my friend Susan asked me to meet her there for coffee once.  I loved it.  Now my husband and I go quite often.

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Seeing the yachts on the water is so relaxing.

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A time you can sit and dream about whatever pleases you.  Winning the lottery so you could buy one of these yachts, or going on a dream vacation.  Maybe even opening up a cafe with surroundings like this.

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How nice would it be sailing away.

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For now, I just enjoy having lunch with my husband, watching the yachts and people around me.  Sitting here, time just seems to melt away.

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You could be adventurous and go for a walk, which we sometimes do.

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But always coming back to relax and enjoy the scenery.  So take a look around where you live and discover places you can enjoy everyday, or whenever the mood strikes you.  I love going to cafés and restaurants.  You see, that’s where I get inspired.  That’s where I get ideas for recipes that I can make my own.  It is really amusing when you take pictures of what you are eating, seeing people watching you and wondering why.  Others love taking pictures of scenery, people and places. No one thinks anything of it.  I love taking pictures of food. Each to his own.

It all comes down to what you enjoy.  Life isn’t that long, so take time to smell the roses or whatever else is around you.  It isn’t coincidence that you are where you are.  So enjoy!

Baba

 

Super Simple Carmel Sauce

This caramel sauce is so super simple that you’ll make it all the time.  I always thought that Sweetened Condensed Milk was just for baking.  WRONG.  I can’t get enough of this stuff.  When I make this I store it in a little container in my fridge and it’s ready to go when I need it.  The only disadvantage to it is you can also eat it by the spoonful.  It tastes like a little bit of heaven in your mouth.  Thick, creamy and sweet. Oooohhhh it’s so good!

imageThis is the only ingredient you will need.

imagePlace the can of Sweetened Condensed Milk into a pot of cold water, making sure the can is totally covered with water. Bring it to a boil then turn down the heat and simmer for 2 1/2-3 hours. Yes 2 1/2-3 hours.

I cover the  pot leaving the lid just off to the side a bit.  I also keep a kettle of  HOT water handy in case I need to add it to the simmering pot with the Sweetened Condensed Milk.  The Sweetened Condensed Milk must always be submerged in water.  When it has simmered for 2 1/2 hours remove it from the water and let it cool completely.

imageThen open the can.

imageThis is what you have created.  A soft sweet carmel that you can use in your coffee, tea, salad dressings, baking, sandwiches, on burgers, hot dogs, just let your imagination run wild.  I have a recipe on my blog for a green tea frappicino using this. FANTASTIC!  Seriously, you HAVE to try this!

Fantastic Strawberry Jam

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Strawberry jam is so easy to make if you have the right recipe and method.  For years I  tried all different kinds of these recipes, without much success.  Needless to say I was sceptical of this recipe but I thought I would give it a try. There was no looking back. My daughter-in-law and her friend decided to make strawberry jam and asked me to show them how I made mine.  I quickly agreed.  You see I had an ulterior motive.  I could take pictures of the process for my blog without having to make it myself. This is an easy method. I encourage you to give it a try.

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Wash your jars and their rings in the dishwasher.  It’s also ok to do them by hand, remembering to rinse them really well.  Preheat your oven to 170 degrees farinheit.  Place the jars into the oven where they will remain until you will be ready to use them.  Also place a spoon in the freezer.  Trust me on this one.

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Hull your strawberries and place them into a large bowl.  I challenge you not to eat these while performing this task.

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With a potato masher, mash them to the consistency you like.  I like mine with a lot of lumps.  I wouldn’t use a food processor.  It would make them too watery.  Oh gosh they smell heavenly!

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Place the berries into a pot.

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Add your Certo Crystals.

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Place the pot on your stove on a medium-high heat, stirring continually until it comes to a boil.

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Add your sugar

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Lower your heat a little after mixture of berries, certo and sugar comes to a boil, retaining a smaller boil.  Stirring often, allow mixture to boil about 40 minutes.  Careful not to burn the jam.  The house now smells ssssooooo good.

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After 40 minutes skim off the foam.  It will have reduced quit a bit and will be thicker.  Can you smell the strawberries?  Oh I can.  Mmmmmm!

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Then take out spoon from freezer, dip quickly into jam.  If the spoon is coated your jam is ready. If it runs off spoon just cook a bit longer.  Remove pot from heat and continue stirring 5 minutes.

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Into a pot with water, place 2 sealing lids, bring them to a boil and boil them for 6 minutes.

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Take only two jars out of the oven at one time.  Oops, sorry for the glare.  It’s all about not having enough arms to do two different things.  Taking a hot jar out of the oven and taking a picture of it at the same time.

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Insert wide END of a large funnel into the jar, proceed to fill jar and repeat with second jar.

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Take a clean and damp tea towel wiping the very top of the jars.

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With another dry clean tea towel, wipe the same edges to ensure they are dry for a good seal.

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Remove the sealing lids from the boiling water 1 at a time.  Wipe in a dry clean tea towel, making sure it is completely dry.

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Very carefully, place sealing lids are on jars.

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Take the rings putting them on the jar but place finger on sealing lid to ensure it doesn’t move while tighting.

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Take the two jars, placing them on a flat surface that have a very thick towel on it, covering them with another thick towel.  Don’t they look like you know what you are doing?

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I like to use nice thick beach towels.  Don’t they look pretty? Repeat with other jars. Only uncovering when 2 more jars are ready to be placed under towels.

When you have finished filling all the jars and have placed them under the towels, leave covered overnight.  They should be sealed next morning.  Any jars not sealed properly, use now or refrigerate .

Well I knew this would happen.  I had no intentions of doing jam this year.  After helping the girls and doing the blog, I’ve decided to do some jam.  So off to the market I go tomorrow.

 

RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

4 1/2 cups hulled, mashed strawberries

1 box certo crystals, (57 grams)

3 cups sugar

PREPARATION INSTRUCTIONS

Place mason jars in the oven at 170 degrees.

Hull the strawberries and mash with a potato masher. Only doing 4 1/2 cups at a time. NEVER do more then  this at one time because the jam won’t turn out.

Mix certo crystals with fruit in a large pan.

Place over medium-high heat and stir continually until it bubbles.

Add 3 cups sugar.

After berries, certo and sugar come to a boil, again continually stirring, lower heat a little but maintain a smaller boil.

Stirring often allow mixture to boil 40 minutes – careful not to burn jam.

Place teaspoon in freezer for 15-20 minutes-using a frozen spoon, dip quickly into jam and set aside for a couple of minutes.  If jam sticks to spoon, then it is good to go.  If not then it needs a few more minutes to cook.

If jam is set, take pan off heat and remove foam then stir for about 5 minutes.

Pour jam into heated jars. Make sure sealing lids are clean and dry place the sealing lid on the jar and the ring, tighten.

Place jars onto a flat surface covered with a thick towel. Then cover the jars with another thick towel and let sit over night.  Each jars top will pop as it cools. This will create a good seal. You will be able to see that the lid will fall and if pushed will not move. If any jars have not sealed, use now or refrigerate .

Each quart or 4 1/2 cups of berries makes one jar of jam.

There will be times when the jam is too hard or too soft because the berries are soft from a lot of rain or they are small and hard from not enough rain.

Just feel a sense of accomplishment because of what you have made but most of all enjoy the fruits of your labour.  Ha ha, get it?

Thanks Sarah and Jenn, you’ve just given me more work to do at home.

 

Iced Coffee (OMGosh)

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If you love iced coffee, you’ll love this.  To me this is better then Starbucks Double Shot Coffee that I order.  I have been trying to make an imitation copy of  the Double Shot but I always seem to fall short.  Seems to lack in taste till I made this .  I just didn’t have the time to be brewing espresso shots when I wanted a coffee so I thought, what if I just put the grounds into a jar with some water.  The first time I made this I of course eyeballed it, went to bed and fell asleep.  Next morning when I came down into the kitchen there it sat on the counter.  I thought it would be ruined. Not wanting to dump it, because my espresso is expensive I strained it and placed it in the fridge.  Hoping there would be nothing wrong with it when I decided to make a coffee. Well guess what, it was fine.  I now have a new best friend which I have discovered, you can use not just in baking but in drinks.  Sweetened Condensed Milk.  Oooohhhh, is it ever good!  When you marry these two ingredients together, it’s a match made in heaven.

To my surprise cruising recipes one day on different websites didn’t I find a recipe similar to this.  It was on Pioneer Women.  I was flabbergasted.  Here I was trying to make shortcuts for myself and thinking I’ve come up with a new way of doing something and it was already out there. Amazing!  Well here is my version.

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My coffee of choice is espresso.  You can use what you like.

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I placed the coffee into a jar and added the water.

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Then I gave it a stir to make sure all the grounds were in the water.  Placed the lid on the jar and left it at room temperature.

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After 8 hours, I place a sieve over a pot because that’s all I had.

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Placed some paper towels into the sieve to act as a filter.

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Then poured the coffee into the filter from the jar.  Sorry, no picture but it’s a little hard to pour the coffee, hold the sieve and take a picture.

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From the pot I poured the coffee into a jar that would seal.  Again no picture, I need another arm to take the pictures.  Then I placed the jar in the fridge.

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When I finally had some time to have an iced coffee, I filled the glass up with ice and added the coffee.  Don’t you just love these little jars?  You could also use a mason jar.

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Next I added the Sweetened Condensed Milk.  This stuff I could eat with a spoon.  Funny thing is, I never have sugar in my coffee.

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I then put a lid on the jar and shake it until it is combined.

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Ooohhh it looks good!

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I place a lid with a spout on top and the ring for the jar, inserted my straw and I’m mobile to go where I please, with my coffee in hand.  This for the fraction of the cost that I use to pay at Starbucks. Oh, the lid with the spout was purchased at Canadian Tire.

RECIPE

INGREDIENTS

4 ounces Espresso

4 cups of Water

Sweetened Condensed Milk

PREPARATION INSTRUCTIONS

In a jar combine espresso and water.  Cover and let it sit at room temperature.  I left it overnight when I first made it so now I follow that process.

Line a strainer with paper towels and pour the coffee through into a pot. From the pot into a jar with a lid that will seal. Place in fridge use as needed

ICED COFFEE

Fill a glass with ice.  Pour your coffee in and add the Sweetened Condensed Milk.  Cover with your lid and give it a good shake.  You could also add some other milk of your choice if you like with the Sweetened Condensed Milk. A good solution if you find the coffee to strong.

Enjoy!

 

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ShayDbooks

Books are just one of the many beautiful forms of art. Here we recognize Art In all forms

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by Evelina Di Lauro

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Recipes From My Little Reliable Organised Cooking Kitchen

ashlyblakecosplay

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THE MEDITERRANEAN MICROWAVE

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Celticlady's Book Reviews

Book Reviews, Book Spotlights and Giveaways

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