Smothered Pork Chops

I like Sundays, wait, no I LOVE Sundays. Monday thru Friday seem to go by so fast, it’s rush rush rush rush. God help me when we start having activities and practice and homework. Saturday seems to be an extension of the week though, grocery shopping, cleaning, working outside, there’s always chores to be done. And then Sunday rolls around.

Did I mention I love Sunday? It’s typically our lazy day, we’ll order a movie, lay around all day, take naps, and I always cook a bigger dinner. These pork chops are one of our favorite Sunday night dinners, they’re easy, I don’t have to spend hours at the stove, I typically have all the ingredients in house, and the whole family loves them.

Smothered Pork Chops | Feeding This Family

Smothered Pork Chops
Serves 4-6

4 thicker pork chops or 8 thin pork chops, boneless
1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Tony Chachere’s Original Creole Seasoning or other Cajun/Creole seasoning
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, separated
1 large onion, cut in half then thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 heaping tablespoon all purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
Black pepper

In a small bowl, mix the Garlic Powder and Cajun seasoning. Sprinkle seasoning mixture onto both side of the pork chops. This step can be done ahead of time, refrigerate covered until ready to cook.

When ready to cook, on medium high heat, heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a heavy bottomed pan then cook the pork chops in batches, 2 to 5 minutes per side. You will not be cooking the pork chops through, just searing them. Place the seared pork chops on a plate.

Once all the pork chops are seared, add the additional tablespoon of vegetable oil to the pan then add the onions. Lower the heat to medium and sauté the onions until caramelized, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the onions and garlic and cook for 2 more minutes before adding the chicken broth. Once the broth is added, begin scraping the bottom of the pan to deglaze it and get the good bits off the bottom. Add a good sprinkle of black pepper and allow to simmer on low for 10 minutes. Add the pork chops and juices back to the gravy and cover and continue simmering for 15-30 minutes until gravy has thickened.

Serve over rice.

I’ve linked this post with some of my favorite weekly go to’s for recipes and ideas, The Weekly Potluck, Mandy’s Recipe Box’s “Totally Tasty Tuesdays!”, and Buns in My Oven.

Does your family do Sunday dinner? What are some of your family’s favorites?

Enchilada Casserole

We’re not in tip top shape around here, allergies and fall colds, is there such a thing? There must be. I feel like every time the temperature changes people end up sick. We went from high 90’s into the 100’s to 50’s in one night.

I do love the cooler temperatures though, I’ve decorated for Halloween and Fall already, replaced all the candles with Fall scents, made a pot of Gumbo this past Sunday…I’m ready for Fall and Winter, I guess our bodies aren’t quite ready yet.

I decided to share one of our favorite recipes today, it’s easy, weeknight or weekend meal, everyone I know eats this and loves it. Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Enchilada Casserole | Hope and Wyatt

Enchilada Casserole

1 large onion, chopped
1 lb. ground beef
2 1/2 tablespoons Taco Seasoning (recipe follows) or 1 packet of taco seasoning
1 10 oz. can red enchilada sauce (I always use Old El Paso Mild)
1 15.25 oz. can corn, drained
9 corn tortillas, cut in half
1 3/4 cup shredded cheese
1/2 cup water

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8×11.5 inch baking dish with non stick spray.

In a heavy bottomed pot, brown the ground beef and onion together. When no longer pink, season with seasoning mixture and if you’re like me, use a potato masher to mash the meat into smaller more uniform pieces. If you use a higher percentage fat ground beef, you may need to drain the meat.

Add the enchilada sauce and drained corn to the beef and allow to simmer until most of the enchilada sauce had thickened.

Using half corn tortillas, arrange them in the bottom of the casserole pan, covering the bottom. Then spoon half the meat mixture on top, followed by half the cheese. Add the remaining half corn tortillas, covering the precious layer. Add the remaining meat. Being sure to reach the edges, drizzle the water over the meat. Cover with remaining cheese.

Bake for 25-35 minutes, until bubbly. Allow to cool 10-15 minutes.

Taco Seasoning

I normally double, triple or quadruple this recipe and keep in a covered mason jar on the counter.

1 tablespoon Chili Powder (sometimes I do half regular Chili Powder and half Ancho Chili Powder)
1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/4 teaspoon Onion Powder
1/8 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1/4 teaspoon Dried Oregano
1/2 teaspoon Paprika (sometimes I use Smoked Paprika)
1 1/2 teaspoons Ground Cumin
1 teaspoon Salt
1 teaspoon Black Pepper

I’ve linked this post with some of my favorite weekly go to’s for recipes and ideas, The Weekly PotluckMandy’s Recipe Box’s “Totally Tasty Tuesdays!”, and Buns in My Oven.

Do you have a favorite weeknight meal that everyone is sure to love? Please share with me!

Chicken Spaghetti

Chicken Spaghetti | Hope and Wyatt

Chicken Spaghetti

Feeds 8-12

3 chicken breasts

Chicken bouillon

1 1 lb. box of thin spaghetti, broken into pieces

2 cans Cream of Mushroom soup ( I use the 98% fat free)

1 can Rotel

1 small onion, finely chopped

3 cups grated Cheddar cheese, divided

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

Non stick spray

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Fill a large pot with water, season with the Chicken Bouillon and bring to a boil. Simmer the chicken breasts until cooked through. Remove the chicken breast. Keep the chicken broth.

Allow the chicken breast to cool and shred or cube. Bring the chicken broth back to a boil and cook the spaghetti noodles in the broth. When the noodles are done, before draining, keep a cup of the broth. Drain noodles.

In a large bowl, combine the chicken, onion,  cream of mushroom soup, Rotel, 2 cups of the cheese and seasonings. Once combined, add in the noodles. The reserved broth can be used to thin the noodle mixture out if needed, I typically use about 1/2 a cup of the broth. Spray a large casserole dish with non-stick spray and add the mixture to the dish. Top with remaining 1 cup of cheese.

Bake for 45 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Check at 30 minutes, may need to cover the last 15 minutes so the top doesn’t get too crisp.

Allow to cool for 15 minutes. Serve with a salad or green vegetable and garlic bread

This recipe can be made ahead, prepare, cover and freeze. Can we thawed and baked like normal.

Chicken Spaghetti | Feeding This Family

I’ve linked this post with some of my favorite weekly go to’s for recipes and ideas, The Weekly PotluckMandy’s Recipe Box’s “Totally Tasty Tuesdays!”, and Buns in My Oven.

Banana Bread

Banana Bread | Feeding This Family

Banana Bread

Recipe makes 1 full size loaf

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon salt

5 overripe bananas, mashed

2 eggs, beaten

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup cooking oil, melted butter or margarine

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 cup toasted chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease the bottom and sides of a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine the mashed bananas, eggs, sugar, oil (or butter/margarine), and vanilla. Add banana mixture to the flour mixture all at once and stir until just combined, the mixture will be lumpy. Fold in the nuts if using. Spoon batter in pan and bake for 60 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Check at 45 minutes and cover with foil if needed to prevent over browning. Cool in pan for 15 minutes then remove from pan and cool on wire rack.

I’ve linked this post with some of my favorite weekly go to’s for recipes and ideas, The Weekly PotluckMandy’s Recipe Box’s “Totally Tasty Tuesdays!”, and Buns in My Oven.

Barbeque Chicken Salad

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If you made the Southwest Wraps or if your refrigerator and cabinets are like mine, most of these items will be already in your house.
Barbeque Chicken Salad
Serves 4

1 chicken breast
Barbeque rub, homemade or store bought
2 romaine hearts, washed and chopped
Leftover canned corn, drained
Leftover canned black beans, rinsed and drained
Chopped cilantro
Leftover tortilla chip crumbs
Additional salad ingredients (or any almost empty anything from the refrigerator or cabinets)
1/2 c. Ranch salad dressing
1/2 T. bottled barbeque sauce

Slicing along the length of the chicken breast, slice into 1 inch width pieces. Sprinkle chicken breast pieces with rub and allow to rest, this can be done hours before. Using a hot grill pan or outdoor grill, grill chicken breast pieces on both sides until cooked thoroughly.

While the chicken is cooking, combine salad ingredients in either a large bowl or into each plate. Romaine lettuce, corn, black beans, red bell pepper, jicama, pepper jack cheese, we have used all these and taste wonderful with the salad.

Once chicken is cooked, allow to cool. You can make the dressing at this time, if your bottle of ranch dressing is almost empty you can make the dressing in the bottle, simply add the barbeque sauce to the bottle and shake or you can combine the Ranch and barbeque sauce in a bowl.

Slice cooled chicken into thin slices and combine with salad ingredients and toss with the dressing.

I’ve linked this post with some of my favorite weekly go to’s for recipes and ideas, The Weekly PotluckMandy’s Recipe Box’s “Totally Tasty Tuesdays!”, and Buns in My Oven.

Southwest Wraps

We live in a pretty small town by my standards, around 13,000 within the city limits, and we don’t even live in the city limits. We live about 15 minutes outside of town on 12 acres. I say all this to emphasis my annoyance with our food options. I was born in California and lived in different parts of Southern California and a suburb of Las Vegas until I was 16, where we then moved here, to a small town in East Texas. I was used to options, lots and lots of options. And I have options here, but it’s either Tex-Mex, hamburgers, or pizza. And while I love all these, they get old.

Years ago a small, kitschy, unique cafe opened downtown, they offered sandwiches, soups and salads, and they were different. And I loved it! One of my favorites was the Southwest Wrap. But I could never eat it all and I hated spending almost $10 on lunch. So I decided to recreate it at home and its been a favorite of ours for a couple years now.

Southwest Wraps | Feeding This Family

Southwest Wraps
Serves 2

2 Mission brand Jalapeño Cheddar Wraps
1 chicken breast
1 tablespoon taco seasoning, separated
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 a can of corn, drained
1/2 a can of black beans, rinsed and drained
1/3 of a red bell pepper, chopped finely
3 green onions, sliced thinly
Fritos

Mix a 1/2 tablespoon of the taco seasoning with the softened cream cheese and allow to sit, this process can be done ahead of time.

Pound out the chicken breast so it’s more uniform in thickness and season both sides with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of taco seasoning. While setting out the fillings, grill the chicken on both sides until cooked and no longer pink.

Southwest Wraps | Feeding This Family

Once the chicken is cooked, allow to cool and then thinly slice. To make each wrap, spread the cream cheese mixture thinly covering one side of the tortilla, leaving 1/4 inch rim without any cream cheese. Being careful not to overfill, in your mind split the tortilla in half horizontally, keep your ingredients on the the half closest to you. Place the chicken, vegetables and then a handful of crunched up Fritos, then fold over each side, the left and right side, and then roll, holding tightly, away from yourself. Repeat as necessary.

Now dig in!

Southwest Wraps | Feeding This Family

Now I know this recipes calls for 2 half cans of vegetables but keep those half cans, I have a recipe coming up early next week that will use them up. Just stored the rinsed and drained vegetables in a ziploc in the refrigerator until then.

I’ve linked this post with some of my favorite weekly go to’s for recipes and ideas, The Weekly Potluck, Mandy’s Recipe Box’s “Totally Tasty Tuesdays!”, and Buns In My Oven.

Smoky Corn Chowder

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It’s September! Thank God. That means that fall is right around the corner, and there’s not much I love more than Fall and Winter, ok and Spring. I guess I’m just really not madly in love with Summer. I do love it, what I don’t love is days this we had this past weekend, where its 100 plus degrees, humid, the air is thick, so thick and hot you dread going outside. So we didn’t. Most of the weekend we spent inside. We did have to leave and head to town Saturday morning for groceries, but besides that and a quick shopping trip Sunday, we enjoyed the air conditioning. Early Monday morning I heard the distinct pitter patter of rain and then another pitter patter of little feet wanting breakfast. I know its Labor Day Weekend and people were looking forward to long weekends on the lake and barbecuing, but I love a day off from work where the skies are dark and the weather calls for blankets, cuddles and a warm bowl of soup…So what if its 80 degrees outside, it seems like it should feel a lot colder.

Smokey Corn Chowder

serves 3-5

1 lb. bacon

1 very large or 2 average size onions, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 t. smoked paprika

1/4 t. crushed red pepper flakes

30-40 ounces of corn, fresh, frozen or canned (if using canned, please drain)

2 c. chicken broth or stock

1 c. milk

Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper

Green onions

Whenever I’m going to need crumbled bacon, I start by slicing the bacon up first then frying, so I end up with the small pieces needed, plus they cook more evenly. To do this I slice a full slab of bacon across the slices, basically perpendicular to the slices, and then chop through my slices so I end up with small squares. Then I fry all the little squares up, draining on a paper towels. You don’t have to do it this way, but I highly suggest it. Either way, fry up the bacon so you have small bacon pieces. Once browned and crisp, drain and set aside.

Allow the grease to cool slightly and drain all up about 1 1/2 tablespoons of the bacon grease. Return the pot with grease to medium heat and add the onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic, smoked paprika, and red pepper flakes. Cook, stirring for an additional 2 minutes. 20130902-112008.jpg

Add the corn, broth, and milk, bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Using an immersion blender, blend the soup until smooth. If you do not have an immersion blender, transfer the soup to a blender, being very careful to only fill the blender half way and placing a cloth towel over the cover when blending. Once blended to your desired consistency, stir in 1/2 teaspoon each, kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

20130902-114623.jpg Serve soup, topping with bacon and green onions, warm French rolls would be perfect with this, check out my trick for having warm fresh French rolls ready at all times that only cost me $0.16 each by checking out Feeeding This Family’s Facebook page.

20130902-120307.jpg I’ve linked this post with some of my favorite weekly go to’s for recipes and ideas, The Weekly Potluck, Mandy’s Recipe Box’s “Totally Tasty Tuesdays!”, and Buns In My Oven.