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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Weekly Menu 7/16+

Saturday smoked chicken
rice-a-roni
grilled okra
Sunday beef & cheese enchiladas
watermelon
Monday fried chicken
mashed potatoes & gravy
green beans
fudgey cake
Tuesday el rancho grande
yellow squash
peaches
Wednesday pizza
cucumber salad
Thursday smoked chicken casserole
with tomatillo sauce
broccoli
Friday frito pie
carrot salad
oatmeal chocolate chip cookies


This is birthday week, so I’m including most of my favorites, which means that I’ve diverged from the salad on Monday, just for this week, mostly because I couldn’t think of a main salad that was my favorite.   Also, this week might not be the healthiest week I’ve ever pulled together.  Ok, so it’s not at all and it’s chock full of beef recipes too.  Not to mention plenty of Mexican flavorings.  Yummmm. 

Saturday
1.        Be sure to make extra chicken tonight, for Thursday’s casserole.  You could even get crazy and make up the casserole tonight and then just be ready to pop it into the oven when it’s supper time Thursday.  Crazy, I know! 
2.       Feel free to go wild and add a few mixed veggies to the rice a roni if you want.  Or you can add chopped onion, finely chopped broccoli too.  One slice of American cheese on top when it’s finished will give you a little broccoli cheese action. 
Smoked Chicken
Salt and pepper are all you really need, plus a low and slow fire with some water to generate the steam (at least it works that way in our smoker).  That also keeps the flames down when you cook over indirect heat; which my family appreciates because that means they are not eating pollo al carbon. 
Rice-a-roni
·         ¼ c fideo vermicelli (yellow box), crushed up in small pieces
·         1 c rice
·         2T butter
·         2 ½ c chicken stock
Sautee the vermicelli and rice in butter until the –roni starts to turn golden brown.  Add in the stock and simmer for 20 minutes or when rice is done. 

Grilled Okra
Skewer raw okra, spray with Pam, sprinkle with salt and grill/smoke for 10 minutes per side.

Sunday
Beef/Cheese Enchiladas
·         Corn or flour tortillas (depending on your family’s preference)
·         1-2 cans red enchilada sauce
·         2 c ground beef
·         2-3 c grated cheddar
·         Chopped onions
In a saucepan mix 1 can enchilada sauce and beef, simmer.   Warm corn tortillas in a cast iron skillet, with just a little butter, per tortilla.  This helps get them soft and where they won't crack as you roll them up.  Stack them on a plate as they get hot.  They’ll stay hot until they are ready to roll.  Heat any flour tortillas that you will do in the same cast iron skillet, stack on top of the corn ones to keep them warm.  Spread a little of your sauce in the bottom of the pan to keep the tortillas from sticking to the pan when you are ready to serve.  Next put a little bit of meat, cheese and onion in each tortilla.  Roll it up, place seam side down in 9x13 pan.  Top with remaining sauce, use another can if you need to.  If you are making a large number of corn enchiladas, use more sauce as it will be absorbed by the tortillas as they bake.  If you making mostly flour ones, the extra sauce will make a gluey mess, so go a little easier.  Top with plenty of cheese, onion if you want and bake in a 350 degree oven until cheese is bubbly.

Watermelon

Monday
1.        If you have a chance to soak your chicken in buttermilk overnight, or all day, it does something wonderful to the chicken. 
Fried Chicken
·         Boneless chicken (soaked in buttermilk)
·         1 egg, beaten
·         1-2 c Flour
·         1 sleeve Zesta saltines (crushed)
·         Salt & pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, season-all salt, paprika, whatever else you might see in the spice cabinet
Mix flour and saltines in a large flat bowl and add in seasonings.  Remember, it’s hard to over-season the flour.  Add egg to buttermilk/chicken and stir around.  Place chicken in flour mixture and then into hot oil that is in a large skillet.  When it brown around the edges it is ready to flip. 
Mashed Potatoes
·         Potatoes ~1.5 per person
·         Butter
·         Milk
·         Salt & pepper
Boil the potatoes, drain.  Add in butter and milk, S&P and using your mixer whip those babies up. 
Green Beans
Gravy
·         ¼ c butter
·         ¼ c flour
·         Salt & pepper
·         2 c milk
Make a roux, let it brown a little.  Add salt & pepper, then milk.  Stir to remove lumps and let it come to a boil and remove from heat when it’s just the right thickness. 

Fudge-y Cake (Betty Crocker)
·         1/3 c sweetened condensed milk
·         1 c chocolate chips (6oz)
·         1 box chocolate cake mix
·         ½ c vegetable oil
·         1 c applesauce (this makes it the health food of the week)
·         2 eggs
·         ½ c chopped pecans (optional)
Grease bottom of 9x13 pan with shortening and flour; preheat oven to 350.  Melt ½ c chocolate chips and milk in a small bowl in the microwave at 50% for 1 minute.  Please don't be impatient and burn your chips.  Stir until smooth and set aside.  In large bowl beat cake mix and oil on low speed; mixture will be crumbly—reserve 1 c.  Add applesauce and eggs; beat on low for 30 seconds.  Beat on medium speed 2 minutes.  Spread batter in pan.  Drop melted chocolate by teaspoonfuls over batter, dropping more around edge than in center.  Stir remaining chips and pecans into the reserved cake mixture; sprinkle over batter.  Bake 38 to 43 minutes (odd times, yes) or until center is set.  Run knife around side of pan to loosen cake.  Cool completely, about 2 hours. 

Tuesday
1.        This is so much fun to say, especially if you really roll your R’s.  Reminds me of Sra. Chapman’s Spanish class…Erre con erre cigarro…. Sorry I got side tracked. 
El Rancho Grande
·         2 c cooked ground beef
·         6 tsp (1 packet) taco seasoning mix
·         1 small bell pepper, chopped
·         1 small onion, chopped
·         ½ c chopped celery
·         16 oz can of diced tomatoes, undrained
·         2 c water
·         1 c egg noodles (6 oz)
Sautee the veggies, then add in remaining ingredients and simmer 20 minutes.  Top with American cheese if desired (oh, I desire that). 
Yellow Squash

Wednesday
1.        This crust recipe is really good for pizza or bread.  It makes a double batch of crust, so share one with your neighbor, or make a loaf of bread.  It mixes up in no time and with these lovely warm and balmy days we are having it takes NO TIME at all for the crust to rise if you put the dough outside. 
Pizza
Crust
·         3 tsp yeast (or 1 packet)
·         1 ½ c very warm water
·         1 tsp salt
·         1/3 c olive oil
·         4 c flour
Mix water and yeast; allow to sit for 5 minutes.  Add in two cups flour and remaining ingredients.  Use mixer with dough hook(s) to mix together well.  Add remaining flour.  Mix for about 2 minutes.  Add some additional olive oil to bowl and turn dough to coat.  Cover and allow to rise, until double, in a warm spot for about an hour.  Punch down dough, divide in half.  Spread out half of the dough on large baking sheet, cover and let rise (if you want) about 20 minutes.  Par-bake for about 5 minutes in a 500 degree oven.  Reduce heat to 400 and add toppings to your pizza.  Bake another 10-15 minutes or until done.

Toppings
·         Spaghetti sauce
·         Toppings
·         Mozzarella cheese


Cucumbers Salad
·         2-3 thinly sliced and seeded cucumbers
·         ½ c sour cream
·         ½ c mayo
·         1 tsp apple cider vinegar
·         1 T sugar
·         1 T dill weed

Thursday
1.        Hopefully you have some extra smoked chicken from Saturday night. 
2.       If you’ve been to Chuy’s this is a take-off on their layered chicken stack. 
Smoked Chicken Casserole
·         2 c cooked chicken, chopped
·         ½ c chopped onion
·         ½ c chopped bell pepper
·         1 c sour cream
·         1-2 c salsa verde
·         Blue corn tortillas
·         Monterrey Jack cheese
Sautee veggies until tender.  In a medium bowl, combine chicken, veggies, sour cream and ½ c salsa.  In a round casserole dish, begin layering ¼ c salsa, tortilla, 1/3 chicken mixture, cheese and repeat until you use up all the chicken mixture.  Complete the layers with a tortilla, a little salsa and some cheese.  Bake at 375 degrees until hot and bubbly. 
Broccoli

Friday
1.        Nicole reminded me this past Saturday that I really like Frito Pie which was timely for a week full of less-than-the-best for you items. 
Frito Pie
·         Fritos
·         Chili
·         Cheese
·         Onions (optional)
Carrot Salad
·         3 c shredded carrots
·         ½ c mayo
·         ¼ c raisins
Mix it all up and let it chill for an hour if you have time. 
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

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