Slow Cooker Meatball Tortellini Soup
1 19oz. bag of frozen cheese tortellini
1 14oz. bag of frozen meatballs
1 28oz. can of chopped tomatoes
1 14.5oz. can of tomato sauce
1 qt. chicken stock
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
3 stalks of celery, trimmed and sliced
1/2 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 tsp dried oregano
3 bay leaves
Add all of the ingredients to a 6 quart slow cooker. Stir, and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
Remove the bay leaves, and serve.
This easy tortellini soup recipe goes together quickly, with very little effort or preparation time. This meatball tortellini soup is as easy as dumping the ingredients into the slow cooker, and cooking them.
This pork tenderloin recipe is bursting with flavor, and goes together quickly, using only a few simple igredients. If you want to speed things up, you can omit the marinade, and simply season the medallions with a little bit of salt and pepper. If you have the time, though, the marinade adds a lot of flavor to the pork.
1 pork tenderloin, about 12-16 oz.
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons salt
2 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1/4 cup port wine
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
Slice the pork tenderloin into 1 inch thick medallions.
In a medium bowl, combine the oil, worcestershire sauce, salt, garlic cloves, and rosemary. Pour the marinade into a resealable bag, place the pork into the bag with the marinade, . Marinate for 1 hour, turning the bag over a couple of times to marinate evenly.
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat.
Remove the pork medallions from the marinade, and pat dry. Press down on the medallions with the heel of your hand, to flatten them to about 1/2 inch thick. Add the pork medallions to the hot pan, and cook for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side. Remove the pork from the pan, and set aside to rest.
Pour the wine and the balsamic vinegar into the pan, and reduce the heat to medium. Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring occasionally for about 3-5 minutes, until the sauce has thickened.
Pour the sauce over the pork and serve.
This potato soup recipe goes together quickly. You can cook the steak and the jalapenos while the potatoes are cooking. I chose to grill the steak, but if you wish, you can fry or broil the steak instead. The jalapenos add a little bit of a kick to the potato soup, but keep in mind some jalapenos are spicier than others. You can omit the jalapenos if you want a mild potato soup.
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 quart chicken stock
2 Strip steak, about 1 pound
2 Tbsp. butter
4 jalapenos, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
Put the potatoes and the chicken stock into a soup kettle. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to low. Cover, and simmer for 15 minutes, until the potatoes are tender.
Season the steak with a little bit of salt and pepper. Grill over medium high heat for 3-4 minutes per side until the steak reaches the desired doneness. Remove the steak from the grill and let rest for 5 minutes.
In a skillet, melt the 2 Tbsp. of butter. Add the jalapenos, garlic, and onion. Cook over medium high heat until tender. Remove from the heat and set aside.
When the potatoes are done, puree the potatoes in batches in a countertop blender, or use an immersion blender. Stir in the milk. Add the jalapenos, garlic, and onion. Season with salt and pepper to taste
Thinly slice the steaks. Ladle some of the soup into the serving bowls, and divide the sliced steak among the bowls. Sprinkle the potato soup with sliced green onions and/or cheese if desired and serve.
For the chicken
For the sauce:
1 Tbsp butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, minced
1 8oz. can of tomato sauce
1 cup heavy cream
2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground cardamom
In a medium mixing bowl, combine the yogurt, salt, lemon juice, garlic powder, 2 tsp cayenne pepper, and coriander. Add the chicken strips, and stir to coat the chicken with the yogurt mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Preheat your grill to high.
Remove the chicken from the refrigerator, remove from the marinade and grill for 5-6 minutes on each side. 10-12 minutes total. Remove from the heat, and cut into bite sized pieces.
Add the chicken to the skillet, and stir to coat the chicken with the sauce. Turn the heat to medium low, and simmer for 5-8 minutes. Remove the chicken and serve with the sauce over a bed of basmati rice (white rice if you don’t have basmati).
2 cups shredded pork
2 10oz. cans enchilada sauce
2 Tbsp. pineapple juice
4 oz. crumbled queso fresco
8 9in. flour tortillas
4 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
4 oz. shredded cotija cheese
Preheat the oven to 350° F.
Spray a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray.
Pour one of the cans of enchilada sauce in the bottom of the pan.
In a medium bowl, combine the shredded pork, two tablespoons of the enchilada sauce, the pineapple juice and the queso fresco.
Place 1/4 cup of the pork mixture on each tortilla. Wrap the tortilla around the filling, and place, seam side down, in the pan.
Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the enchiladas, then top with the shredded cheddar and cotija cheeses.
Cover the pan with foil, and bake at 350° F. for 20 minutes. Remove the foil, and bake for another 10 minutes.
Notes: These enchiladas will also work great with shredded beef or chicken.
1/4 cup salt
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
3 Tbsp. garlic powder
2 Tbsp. chili powder
4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 chipotle pepper, finely minced
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 8-9 lb. pork shoulder
3 cups pineapple juice.
In a small mixing bowl, combine the salt, brown sugar, garlic powder, chili powder, 2 tsp of the cayenne pepper, the cumin, the chipotle, and the vegetable oil.
Trim any excess fat from the pork shoulder. Rub the spice mixture on the pork shoulder.
Wrap the pork shoulder in plastic wrap, place in a large bowl and refrigerate for 8 hours.
Unwrap the pork, and place into a slow cooker with 1 1/2 cups of the pineapple juice. Cook on high for 5-6 hours, until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 190° F.
Remove the pork from the slow cooker and let it rest for 30 minutes. Discard the cooking liquid
Using 2 forks, shred the pork, discarding the bone and excess fat.
Return the pork to the slow cooker with the remaining 1 1/2 pineapple juice and 2 tsp. cayenne pepper. Cook on low for 1-2 hours.
Notes: This is a good, easy recipe for pulled pork. It is not an authentic Carolina pulled pork, but it does provide a juicy and flavorful pulled pork for sandwiches, enchiladas, tacos, or just to eat as is.
These fig and gorgonzola tarts are a huge hit whenever I take them to parties. They always seem to be the first appetizer to disappear.
1 7oz. bag of dried figs
1 8oz. package of cream cheese
4oz. crumbled gorgonzola cheese
60 phyllo shells
Preheat your oven to 350º F.
Put the dried figs in the bowl of a food processor, and pulse until coarsely chopped.
Add the chopped figs, cream cheese, and gorgonzola cheese to the bowl of a mixer. Mix on medium speed until combined.
Place the phyllo shells on two baking sheets. Spoon the filling into each shell. Bake at 350º for 10-15 minutes. Remove the tarts from the oven, and transfer them to a cooling rack.
Makes 60 tarts.
Note: You can find the phyllo tart shells in the dessert section of the freezer at your local grocery store. They typically come in packages of 15, so you’ll need 4 packages.
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp chopped fresh oregano
1 tsp fresh thyme
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 12oz. pork tenderloin
salt & pepper
Preheat the oven to 375° F.
In a small mixing bowl, combine the garlic, rosemary, oregano, thyme, and parmesan.
Lightly season the pork tenderloin with salt and pepper.
Sprinkle the parmesan cheese and herb mixture over the pork, lightly pressing it into the tenderloin.
Place the tenderloin in a lightly greased baking dish, Cook at 375° for 15 minutes. Turn the tenderloin over, and cook for another 15 minutes.
Remove the tenderloin from the oven and place on a cutting board to rest for 5 minutes. Slice and serve.
Gnocchi is an Italian potato dumpling, made with mashed potatoes, eggs, and flour. You may be able to find it at the grocery store in the pasta section. In some parts of Italy, it is served in lieu of pasta.
Serves 2-4, depending on appetite.
1/4 pound prosciutto ham
3 cloves garlic
2 Tbsp butter or margarine
1 Tbsp all purpose flour
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
1 pound gnocchi
Slice the prosciutto into 1/4 inch strips. Saute in a large frying pan over medium heat until heated through, about 2 minutes. Remove the prosciutto from the pan, and set aside.
At this time, you should set a kettle of water on the stove to boil, over high heat. It should be boiling by the time you finish the sauce.
With the side of a chefs knife, crush the cloves of garlic, and remove the skin. Add the garlic and the butter or margarine to the pan, and cook the garlic for 1-2 minutes. Do not let it burn. Remove the garlic and discard.
Add the flour to the oil in the pan. Stir and cook over medium heat until the flour and oil form a paste, called roux. Cook the roux until light brown, 30 seconds to a minute.
Add the cream to the roux, and stir until thick and bubbly. Remove the pan from the heat, and stir in the gorgonzola. Stir until the cheese is melted. Stir in half of the prosciutto, then pour the sauce into a medium mixing bowl.
Add the gnocchi to the boiling water, and cook until the gnocchi floats to the surface, about two minutes. Drain the gnocchi, and toss it with the sauce in the mixing bowl. Divide the gnocchi into two serving bowls, and sprinkle the remaining prosciutto over the top.
Note: I used store bought gnocchi for this recipe. If you have a good recipe, you can make your own gnocchi, but this recipe comes together very quickly with pre-made gnocchi. If you can’t find prosciutto in your local store, then you can substitute sliced deli ham, or bacon.
Health Benefits Of Chickpeas
Legumes are a very healthy food. Chickpeas, also called garbanzo beans, are no exception. Chickpeas have several health benefits and should be included as a part of your diet.
One of the major health benefits of chickpeas is their fiber content. One cup of chickpeas contains 50% of the daily recommended value. Two thirds of the fiber in garbanzo beans is insoluble fiber. This means that it passes unchanged through the digestive system, serving as a “push broom” to sweep the colon clean.
Chickpeas are also a good source of protein. The protein, combined with the fiber help to regulate blood sugar, which is important for diabetics. The fiber and protein keep the food from being broken down too quickly and releasing sugar into the bloodstream too quickly.
Another one of the health benefits of chickpeas is a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease. Just ¾ of a cup of chickpeas a day can lower bad cholesterol and triglycerides, reducing the risk of cardiovascular problems.
Chickpeas contain a number of antioxidants. These nutrients help to prevent damage to the body caused by oxidation by free radicals. Antioxidants can help to protect the body from diseases like cancer, and from damage to the blood vessels.
To enjoy the health benefits of chickpeas, you can easily work them into your diet. They can be used in soups or salads, and they are a key ingredient in hummus. Unlike canned vegetables, there is very little difference in the nutritional value of canned chickpeas or those that you cook yourself. If you are short on time, the canned chickpeas are just fine. One suggestion to help you enjoy the health benefits of chickpeas is to try this garbanzo bean salad recipe.
garbanzo Beans – $3.95