Tag Archives: recipe

Mister’s Simple & Quick Calzones

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Mister has worked in pizza kitchens for the majority of his life, so when I had a hankering for calzones, I knew it was best to just let him take over in the kitchen. I love homemade stromboli and calzones not just because they are delicious, but because they are so cheap to make. I normally have my favorite toppings on hand, so all it usually requires is the dough, cheese, and sauce. Here’s the recipe:

For ONE Calzone

– 1 can of pizza dough (Pillsbury makes an exceptionally good one!)
– 4 Tbsp. canned pizza sauce (more or less to taste. Mister and I sprang for the pricier sauce just because it was so yummy.)
– handful mozzarella cheese
– Your yummy toppings (I’m a pepperoni and banana peppers kind of girl, and Mister goes for ham and pineapple)
– Olive oil/vegetable oil (whichever you have on hand)
– 1 Tbsp. melted butter
– dash of Italian seasoning
– sprinkling of grated Parmesan cheese

Ball up the pizza dough and then press out onto an oiled, circular plate until dough is flat and can be stretched without tearing.

Add sauce, cheese, and toppings to one half of the dough – careful not to overstuff.

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Fold the other half over top of the toppings. Secure the edges of the dough by crimping with your fingers.

Cut 2-3 slits in the top of the dough. If you like, top calzone with reserved toppings to show what deliciousness is inside.

Brush with melted butter, then top with a sprinkling of grated Parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning.

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Pop it in the oven (preferably on a baking stone!) at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes (or until golden).

Enjoy your delicious pizza-y treat.

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(Hint — for a delicious dipper, mix a few Tbsp. of Catalina dressing with a squirt of ketchup to make the famous red sauce often served with calzones.)

Unforgettable Fried Chicken

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This past Saturday, my lovely mister and I decided to make some fried chicken for ourselves and my family. I must say, he has shared a secret to the best breading I have ever tasted, and I feel the need to share it with you. It’s so deliciously simple too.

Equal parts flour and cornmeal
A couple table spoons Old Bay
-Here’s the secret- Instead of just dipping it in the egg wash, then the dry mix, then frying — DOUBLE DIP! Return it to the egg wash and then the dry mix for another coating.

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I adore frying in cast iron. Can’t get enough of it.

I also suggest stuffing your chicken with delicious goodies. He butterflied this piece open and tossed in some pepperjack cheese before frying.

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We wound up with a huge plate of yumminess. Absolutely delicious!

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I wish I had taken a picture of the Memorial Day meal we made. We bought some mini party buns and made tiny burgers (that really weren’t tiny at all) that were stuffed with either cheddar and bacon or mushroom and swiss. Unfortunately, by the time we finished grilling, I was so hungry that I forgot to snap any pictures.

OPA!

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I haven’t posted in way too long, and I have so much to get caught up on. I worked my entire break so what little I did do that I wanted to post about, I was often too tired to go through the process of uploading and posting. I’m pulling myself out of that funk tonight though. I’m going to devote this to one heavenly meal I made this week. Beware, this entry will be image-heavy with what my buddy Donn likes to call “food porn”.

Being Greek, I am naturally drawn to Greek dishes and flavors. I live for roasted lamb, spanakopita, dolmades…and so on. Unfortunately, this area is not familiar with the best cuisine the world has to offer, and therefore, there’s no place within probably a hundred miles offering quality Greek food. So usually I end up making my own or infusing Greek flavors into other dishes – Greek Lasagna, anyone? That was a real winner. So when I had a large amount of chicken breasts to prepare, I decided to do a little experiment in a Greek ingredient stuffing. One of the things I adore most are kalamata olives. Often, as a snack I will eat a whole bowl of them covered in Feta cheese. Although they are pricey, they are worth every penny.

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Nom nom. Anywhooo….I started by making a stuffing of sauteed mushrooms, chopped kalamata olives, cooked spinach, and feta cheese. Slice the chicken breast as if you are going to butterfly it, but don’t cut all the way through on the ends.

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You will need to secure the chicken with toothpicks during baking so that the stuffing doesn’t run out.

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I made a quick sauce with chopped tomatoes, some Greek seasoning, and the spinach that I had leftover from making the stuffing. I also topped it off with more of the feta cheese.

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Popped those lovelies in the oven to bake, and I started on a couple side dishes. Greek seasoned fried potatoes and some zucchini with a dash of the Greek seasoning I used on the potatoes.

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About an hour later, I pulled this out:

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…and served over top of spaghetti noodles.

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It looked MASSIVE on the plate. It truly was a ton of food. Very difficult to finish all of it but it was great to the last bite.

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…and check out that yummy stuffed center…

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It was heavenly, as Greek food always is. 😉

I cook with wine…but it doesn’t always make it into the food ;)

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A very, very busy evening in the kitchen!
I ended up trying out a new recipe and also using an old faithful to make a ton of food (and leftovers) for my parentals and myself. I love getting to bring a ton of food back to school after a weekend at home. First, let me share with you the new recipe for….*drumroll* Oriental Chicken Lettuce Wraps!!

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I have been craving these since I first devoured some at P.F.Chang’s a few weeks ago. I did my best to find a good copycat recipe similar to how the restaurant prepares them. I mostly followed this recipe exactly – with only a couple exceptions – I left out the sesame oil, as it is near impossible to find in this area. I also doubled the amount of stir fry sauce. This recipe was so cheap and easy, since I already had most of the ingredients in the fridge.

Ingredients
3 tablespoons oil
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup water chestnut
2/3 cup mushroom
3 tablespoons chopped onions
1 teaspoon minced garlic
4 -5 leaves iceberg lettuce

Special Sauce
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon hot mustard
2 teaspoons water
1 -2 teaspoon garlic and red chile paste

Stir Fry Sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon rice wine vinegar

Directions:
Prep Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 25 mins

1. Make the special sauce by dissolving the sugar in water in a small bowl.
2. Add soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, ketchup, lemon juice and sesame oil.
3. Mix well and refrigerate this sauce until you’re ready to serve.
4. Combine the hot water with the hot mustard and set this aside as well.
5. Eventually add your desired measurement of mustard and garlic chili sauce to the special sauce mixture to pour over the wraps.
6. Bring oil to high heat in a wok or large frying pan.
7. Saute chicken breasts for 4 to 5 minutes per side or done.
8. Remove chicken from the pan and cool.
9. Keep oil in the pan, keep hot.
10. As chicken cools mince water chestnuts and mushrooms to about the size of small peas.
11. Prepare the stir fry sauce by mixing the soy sauce, brown sugar, and rice vinegar together in a small bowl.
12. When chicken is cool, mince it as the mushrooms and water chestnuts are.
13. With the pan still on high heat, add another Tbsp of vegetable oil.
14. Add chicken, garlic, onions, water chestnuts and mushrooms to the pan.
15. Add the stir fry sauce to the pan and saute the mixture for a couple minutes then serve it in the lettuce”cups”.
16. Top with”Special Sauce”.

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These are quite possibly my new favorite snack. Even Dad enjoyed them, and normally this wouldn’t be his ideal meal.

Moving on, we had a ton of shrimp mom wanted used, and I also had leftover chicken from the mega-pack we bought on sale for the wraps. I decided to combine the two in my old faithful recipe of chicken and shrimp fettucini alfredo. I’d share the recipe, but honestly I do this one just based off of what looks right. 🙂

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It feels great to be back in the kitchen again. I have a long break coming up soon, so hopefully I’ll be able to experiment a bit more.

What’s for dinner?

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While I do plan on updating soon with pictures of last minute Christmas present projects for Mister Fuzzy, I decided tonight would be a good opportunity to share some creativity of the edible variety.

Inspiration struck me earlier this week while watching a cook on television talk about biscuits she serves at her restaurant that contain spinach and brie cheese. Brie isn’t commonly found at the grocery stores in this area, so although I thought the idea was nifty, I didn’t anticipate recreating it. That is, until our office Christmas party took place at none other than Red Lobster – home of those delicious cheddar biscuits that I often smuggle out in my purse just so I can ask for more and take them home. It hit me then! Why not do cheddar and spinach? It sounded like such a delightful combination.

I decided to experiment with it. Unfortunately for you, I never do exact measurements when I cook, but I must have used something like this:
4 c. bisquick
1 c. milk
1/2 c. melted butter
a couple heaping handfuls of sharp cheddar
1/3 package of frozen spinach (I believe it was Green Giant)

When I put the dough onto the baking sheet, I topped the balls with a sprinkle of garlic salt.

The result was miraculous (and tasty!)!  Scrumptious biscuits! I will definitely be experimenting with these again.

I then went on to make a hodgepodge of foods from various ethnic backgrounds, but they tasted so wonderful together. Mister Fuzzy and I thoroughly enjoyed it, and it was adorable getting him to help me in the kitchen.

Other than the delicious biscuits, we made a spring greens salad with feta, sliced tomatoes, and we ended up topping it with a ginger dressing (not pictured).

I am rather fond of flat iron steak and its versatility in dishes. I wish I’d been able to give it longer to marinate, but our tummies were rumbling and we just couldn’t wait any longer. It still came out nice and tender, and I could have eaten it whole like this…

…but instead, I made white rice and then stir fried some veggies (including those leftover from a few festive holiday veggie trays) to serve as a bed for thinly sliced strips of the steak.

It was an absolutely lovely dinner with such a wide variety of flavors. I could definitely go for seconds right now! Share a dinner like this with someone you love tonight!