June 26, 2015

Creamy Chicken and Cheese Tortilla Pie

I've made something similar to this recipe over here, which I love by the way, but this was just different enough that I fell in love with it and will definitely be making it more often.
What's not to love about layers of cheese, sour cream, chicken and tortilla?? Such a simple concept, but absolutely delicious.
I love the idea of stacking the tortillas and chicken in a springform pan because they fit perfectly and also being able to take the sides off of the pan makes it amazing for serving.
This is something your family will love and there are so many ways you can add more flavor to it. Especially with toppings!
We loved adding our favorite peach and mango salsa on top for some sweet and spicy flavor! So good!

Creamy Chicken and Cheese Tortilla Pie
Adapted from Damn Delicious
1 large chicken breast, shredded
1 tsp. cumin 
5 9-inch flour tortillas
3/4 cup sour cream
2-3 cups Monterey jack cheese
salsa, avocado, tomato, cilantro for topping, optional

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly coat a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick spray.
2. Stir cumin into shredded chicken and set aside.
3. Heat a large skillet or griddle to medium high heat. Working one at a time, add a tortilla and cook until crisp and lightly browned, about 1-2 minutes per side, flipping only once.
4. Place one tortilla on the bottom of the springform pan. Spread 2 tablespoons sour cream evenly over the top, followed by some chicken and cheese. Repeat with 3 more layers. Top with remaining tortilla and sprinkle with cheese.
5. Place into oven and bake for 20 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the stack is heated through.
6. Cut into wedges and serve immediately. Garnish with toppings if desired.

June 24, 2015

Toasted Marshmallow Brownies

This is barely a recipe, more like a good idea, but I had to share! These brownies are perfect for summer and give the yummy sensation of eating a toasted marshmallow in your home without having to smell like campfire smoke. And we all know marshmallows and chocolate are two peas in a pod, right?
The marshmallows are perfectly browned underneath your oven broiler (make sure you watch closely so as not to burn) and make a great addition to an already delicious boxed brownie. Definitely simple to make and oh so good!

Toasted Marshmallow Brownies
1 boxed (9x13) brownie mix (I prefer Pilsbury) 
27 large marshmallows

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with non-stick spray and set aside.
2. Prepare the brownie mix as instructed on the box. Pour into prepared 9x13-inch dish. Bake as instructed on the box.
3. Let brownies cool completely.
4. Cut each marshmallow in half and place the sticky side down on top of the brownies so each marshmallow is touching.
5. Broil in your oven for 1-2 minutes, WATCHING the entire time so they don’t burn. (If the marshmallows even start to smoke make sure you turn or remove the pan from the oven.)

6. Let cool and cut into squares if serving to a crowd. (Spray a spatula with cooking spray for easier cutting because it will get very sticky.)

June 22, 2015

Healthy Banana Oat Bread Bars

So I've always been a fan of banana bread because who isn't, really? And I'm always up for trying new variations of banana bread. So when I saw this recipe I was instantly intrigued. Even though it took me a while to try them, I can now say I'm hooked. These bars are soft, fluffy, sweet, flavorful and filling. The perfect healthy snack. And dare I say better than banana bread?? I think so.
These are so easy to whip together and will make your whole family happy. My picky 3-year-old loved them and so did my husband. We finished the whole plan in a day so if you have a large family, it'd be a good idea to double the recipe. They really are amazing and you should make them as soon as the bananas sitting on your counter turn the perfect brown.

Healthy Banana Oat Bread Bars
Slightly Adapted from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe
2 1/4 cups rolled oats, finely ground in a blender or food processor (measure the oats before grinding)
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
3 medium ripe bananas
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup honey
1/4-1/3 cup chocolate chips 

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat an 8X8 or 9X9-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the ground oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
3. Add the bananas, vanilla, applesauce, and honey to a blender and process until smooth.
Pour the wet mixture over the dry ingredients and mix just until combined.
4. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan. Sprinkle with chocolate chips. Bake for 14-18 minutes until set around the edges and barely moist in the center.

June 11, 2015

Lemon Cream Pancakes

I have really been on a lemon kick lately while cooking and I just had to post this recipe as soon as possible. It is a definite keeper! These pancakes are packed full of lemon flavor and are totally worth all the butter and cream! Decadent but light and perfectly fluffy.
This is one of those great pancake recipes that would be perfect to serve to a crowd, but also feed them something a little unexpected. Because we all know that homemade pancake batter trumps store-bought any day, right? And lemon cream pancakes? Does it get much better than that?

Lemon Cream Pancakes
Slightly Adapted from Dessert for Two
Serves 4-6
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 cup granulated sugar
pinch of salt
1-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
2 large eggs, beaten
zest of one lemon

1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt.
2. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the milk, cream, melted butter, egg and lemon zest.
3. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry, and whisk until no streaks of flour remain, but do not whisk the lumps out.
4. Let the batter rest while you preheat a greased griddle to 350 degrees F.
5. Using a 1/3-cup measuring cup, portion out pancakes slowly. To get a perfect circle, do not move the cup around the pan; pour in one continuous motion.
6. Cook the pancakes on the first side until bubbles appear on the surface. Flip and finish cooking.

7. Serve with butter and maple syrup.

June 9, 2015

Sixteen-Spice-Rubbed Chicken with Mango-Garlic Cream Sauce and Creamy Cilantro Mashed Potatoes

This dish is a fun adaptation from a dish served at Mesa Grill by Bobby Flay in Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. Caesar's Palace is a Roman-themed hotel and if you've ever been to Vegas, you know themes are a big deal. Since not everyone can make their way to Vegas, this is a fun way to enjoy a normally $30+ meal right at home for less than half the restaurant's price.
I decided to pick this dish because I love Southwestern food and knew it was something I would not only love, but be able to easily prepare in my own kitchen.
Sixteen spices rubbed on a chicken breast does not leave room for simple flavor and the mango cream sauce on top??? Out of this world! I could easily pour it on everything I eat.
The mashed potatoes, blended with half-and-half, butter, garlic and some cilantro are delicious as well. They pair perfectly with the chicken and mango sauce.
This is definitely one of those meals that makes you feel like you should be sitting in a fancy restaurant while you eat. And it's so simple to make, too! What's not to love?

Sixteen-Spice-Rubbed Chicken
Adapted from Bobby Flay
1/2 Tbsp. chili powder
1/2 Tbsp. ground cumin
1/2 Tbsp. ginger
1/2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. ground allspice
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. coriander
4 boneless chicken breasts
1/4 cup canola oil

1. Heat your grill to high. Stir together all of the spices and set aside.
2. Brush both sides of each breast with the oil. Rub the top side of each breast with a few tablespoons of the rub, shaking any excess off.
3. Place on the grill, rub side down. Grill until golden brown and slightly charred, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the breasts over and continue grilling until just cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes longer.

Mango-Garlic Cream Sauce
Adapted from Food.com
1 Tbsp. butter
1 tsp. garlic, minced
1 mango, peeled, cored and pureed (in blender or food processor)
1/2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 Tbsp. cream or half-and-half

1. In a small pan over medium heat, melt butter, add garlic and sauté until tender.
2. Add mango and lemon and simmer gently for 5 minutes.
3. Stir in cream and serve.

Cilantro Cream Mashed Potatoes
Adapted from Epicurious
2 large russet potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 1/2 tsp. garlic
1/2 cup warm half-and-half
2 Tbsp. butter, room temperature
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
kosher salt and pepper

1. Cook potatoes in large pot of boiling salted water until very tender, about 35 minutes. Drain. Transfer potatoes to a large bowl. 
2. Using a potato masher, mash potatoes until smooth. Stir in garlic. Gradually mix in half-and-half. Add butter and stir or mash until melted. Stir in cilantro. Season with salt and pepper.

June 5, 2015

Thai Coconut Curry Soup

Words cannot describe the love I have for this soup. A soup so good and so flavorful that I seriously considered whipping up another batch. If only I had another can of coconut milk on hand...However, I can definitely see myself making this soup again, which would be two weeks in a row. It is that good.
Coming from someone who knows next to nothing about Thai food, I can quite possibly say I am completely converted to it if it tastes anything like this soup. This soup is sweet from the coconut milk, has a perfect curry spice and is downright delicious. Again, I could go on and ON. My advice to you is to at least try it, even if you're not a big curry fan because I would be completely surprised if you didn't like it. Just saying.

Thai Coconut Curry Soup
Adapted from: Let’s Dish
Serves: 3-4
1-2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 tsp. curry powder, plus more for seasoning chicken
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
Dash of cayenne pepper
1 (12 oz.) can coconut milk
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbsp. lime juice
1 1/2-2 cups cooked white rice
Optional toppings: chopped fresh cilantro, lime wedges

1. Season the chicken with curry powder, salt and pepper. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a large pot over medium heat, add the chicken and cook until no longer pink.
2. Add the chicken broth, curry powder, brown sugar, ginger, salt, pepper and cayenne. Stir to combine. Turn down heat and let simmer for 20 minutes.
3. Add coconut milk, stir and let heat through about 5 minutes. 
4. Just before serving, stir in the cilantro and lime juice.
5. Place cooked white rice in bowls and ladle the soup over top. Stir in desired toppings.

*This recipe can easily be adapted for the slow cooker by adding all of the ingredients except for the cilantro and lime juice into the slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours. Then complete steps 4 and 5. 

June 3, 2015

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Chimichurri Sauce

Ohhhhh man. These potatoes. Let's just say these were part of one heck of a week of good recipes. One pan was not enough for my husband and I because they were that good. Not only did they taste incredible, but they are healthy, too. It's a definite win-win in my book.
These potatoes are super easy to throw together and will rock your world. I used a blender to make the chimichurri (out of laziness...), which only coarsely chopped most of the cilantro and parsley. However, we found out we liked the coarseness of it just fine. I am all for trying a finer chimichurri with a food processor though.

Anyway, these pictures are making me incredibly hungry...Go make yourself some.

Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Chimichurri Sauce
Adapted from Our Best Bites
Sweet Potatoes
2 lbs. sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1/2-3/4″ pieces
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. onion powder
Kosher salt
Pepper

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
2. Place chopped sweet potatoes in a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle on seasonings and stir to coat. Spread potatoes on a baking sheet into an even layer.
3. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until toasted and tender

Chimichurri
3/4 cup roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
3/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro
3 tsp. garlic, finely minced
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
1/2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
pinch red pepper flakes
About 4 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1. Place parsley, cilantro, garlic, lime juice, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper in a small food processor or blender. (Alternately, you may chop everything by hand very finely.) Process until finely (or coarsely) chopped and then transfer to a small bowl. Add in pepper flakes and olive oil and stir to combine. 

2. When potatoes have cooked, toss with chimichurri and serve immediately.

June 2, 2015

New Blog URL!

I finally got around to choosing a domain for this blog to match my blog name after blogging 5+ years now...nothing else has changed and all the old posts are active so this is just an FYI.

My new blog URL is theforloveoffoodblog.com and is up and running.

Thanks for stopping by!

June 1, 2015

Easy Six-Layer Taco Cups

I've made these taco cups several times now and am finally getting around to sharing the recipe. These Six-Layer Taco Cups are EASY and flavorful little pockets of goodness. They are one of my new favorite things.
Tortilla cups are so simple and fun to throw together and would make a great appetizer or meal.
The layers can be as versatile as you want, too, but I have definitely found a good combination. With rice, black beans, cheese, sour cream, salsa and cilantro, your tastebuds will not be disappointed.
And if you serve them alongside these AMAZING sweet potatoes (recipe coming soon), you'll have yourself one heck of a meal!
Now, don't you just want to take a bite?

Easy Six-Layer Taco Cups
Adapted from Averie Cooks
Makes 12 Cups
3 flour tortillas, cut into fourths
1/2 cup cooked white rice
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
Cumin, for sprinkling
About 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Sour cream, for garnishing
Salsa, for garnishing
chopped cilantro

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a non-stick 12-cup regular muffin pan with cooking spray and set aside.
2. Press a tortilla fourth down into each cup. (The edges will stick up or you can trim them.)
3. Add 1 Tbsp. of rice to each tortilla and top with 1 Tbsp. of beans. Sprinkle each cup with a generous pinch of cumin. Top each taco cup with 1-2 Tbsp. of cheddar cheese.
4. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until cheese has melted and tortilla shells are lightly golden brown around the edges.
5. Garnish each cup with sour cream, salsa and cilantro as desired. Serve immediately.