Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Crockpot Cafe Rio Chicken Tortilla Soup

Today I was going to make this soup, and realized I couldn't find my recipe anywhere. When I finally found it stuffed inside a cookbook, I decided I needed to post it on the blog so I'll have easier access to it.

So, here's my own version of Cafe Rio chicken tortilla soup (it's also a good food storage recipe):

2 14oz cans of chicken or vegetable stock
1 undrained 10 or 12oz can chicken (or one chicken breast)
1/2 can rinsed black beans
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
2 cloves minced garlic (or 1/4 tsp dried minced garlic)
1/2 minced onion (or sprinkle of dried minced onion)
1/2 cup prepared green salsa
1 lime (or 4 TBSP lime juice)

mix it all in the crockpot and cook for several hours (or if you are using raw chicken, until the chicken can be pulled apart and mixed into the soup).

When ready to serve, top each bowl with a sprinkle of cheese, tortilla chips, and stir in a spoonful of guacamole (for a quick guacamole, just mash up one or two ripe avocados with a bit of salsa).

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Potato Soup

■6 slices Thin Bacon, Cut Into 1-inch Pieces

■1 whole Medium Onion, Diced

■3 whole Carrots, Scrubbed Clean And Diced

■3 stalks Celery, Diced

■6 whole Small Russet Potatoes, Peeled And Diced

■8 cups Low Sodium Chicken Or Vegetable Broth

■3 Tablespoons All-purpose Flour

■1 cup Milk

■1/2 cup Heavy Cream

■1/2 teaspoon Salt, More To Taste

■Black Pepper To Taste

■1/2 teaspoon Cajun Spice Mix

■1 teaspoon Minced Fresh Parsley

■1 cup Grated Cheese Of Your Choice

Preparation Instructions

Add bacon pieces to a soup pot over medium heat and cook bacon until crisp and fat is rendered. Remove the bacon from the pot and set it aside. Pour off most of the grease, but do not clean the pot.

Return the hot to medium-high heat and add the onions, carrots, and celery. Stir and cook for 2 minutes or so, then add the diced potatoes. Cook for 5 minutes, seasoning with salt, pepper, and Cajun spice.

Pour in the broth and bring it to a gentle boil. Cook for 10 minutes, or until the potatoes are starting to get tender. Whisk together the flour and the milk, then pour into the soup and allow the soup to cook for another 5 minutes.

Remove half to 2/3 the soup and blend in a blender/food process until completely smooth. Pour it back into the soup pot and stir to combine. Let it heat back up as you taste for seasonings, adding more of what it needs. Stir in cream, then stir in parsley, reserving a little for garnish.

Serve in bowls garnished with parsley, grated cheese and crisp bacon pieces.

Cheesy Chicken adn Wild Rice Casserole

3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, finely diced
3 stalks celery, finely diced
3 carrots, peeled and diced
2 Tablespoons fresh minced garlic
2 Cups shredded, cooked chicken breast
1 Cups steamed white rice
16 oz prepared wild rice (I just used a package of Uncle Ben's)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt

Cheese Sauce
4 Tablespoons butter
1/4 Cup all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 Cups chicken broth
2 Cups shredded cheddar cheese
Top with 1 1/2 Cups shredded cheddar cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Heat oil into a medium dutch oven or pot over medium heat. Saute onion, celery and carrots until softened, about 10 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook for 1 minute. Stir in chicken, both rices, salt, pepper and garlic salt. Reduce heat to low.

2. To prepare cheese sauce melt butter into a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Whisk in flour, salt and pepper then slowly pour in chicken broth whisking continuously. Whisk until thick and nearly boiling then stir in cheese until melted. Pour cheese sauce into rice mixture then transfer to a 9×13 inch baking dish. Top with additional cheddar cheese and bake for 25-30 minutes or until cheese is melted through. Serve.

Chili - Wendy's Style

Chili {Wendy's Style} Ingredients:
2 pounds ground beef, browned and drained

1 large yellow (sweet) onions, chopped

2 large green bell peppers, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

1 heaping tablespoon minced garlic (I use jarred)

2 cans dark red kidney beans, drained (15 ounce cans)

1 cans Original Rotel Diced Tomatoes & Green Chili (10 ounce cans)

1 cans stewed tomatoes (15 ounce cans)

2 cans plain tomato sauce (15 ounce cans)

1 packages McCormick Mild Chili Seasoning (1.25 ounce packages)

Combine all ingredients in a large stock pot.*

Simmer for at least three hours (I let mine cook all day long).

Monterey Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/4 c. bar-b-que sauce ( I use Bull's Eye)

1/4 c. real bacon bits

1 c. colby and jack cheese, shredded

1 14 oz. can Rotel tomatoes, drained (canned with green chilies added)

sliced green onions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Pound out chicken breasts to flatten. Season with pepper. Grill chicken until no long pink (we used our George Foreman grill) and place on baking sheet covered with foil. Top each chicken breast with one tablespoon bar-b-que sauce, 1/4 c. cheese, 1/4 c. tomatoes, green onions and one tablespoon of bacon bits. Place in oven and bake until cheese is melted (about 5 minutes).

Chicken Cordon Bleu with Parmesan Dijon Cream Sauce


3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in half (like you're butterflying, but finish the cut)

12 slices deli honey ham

1 cup Panko bread crumbs

2 tablespoons butter, melted

1/2 pounds thinly sliced Swiss cheese

Parmesan-Dijon Cream Sauce

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup milk

1 chicken bouillon cube, crushed

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese


Coat a 9" x 13" baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a medium bowl, combine the bread crumbs and 2 tablespoons melted butter; set aside.

Lay the chicken breast halves in a single layer in the baking dish. Top each breast with two slices of ham and 2 slices of Swiss cheese. It's okay for the ham and cheese to overlap, as long as the entire breast is covered. Sprinkle bread crumbs over the top of the chicken.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through (clear juices), the cheese is bubbly and the bread crumbs are golden brown.

While the chicken bakes, melt 2 tablespoons butter in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour to form a roux, cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Slowly pour in the milk while whisking constantly, make sure there are no clumps. Stir in the bouillon and salt. Whisk constantly until the mixture begins to thicken, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and Parmesan cheese. Stir until the cheese is melted. Keep the sauce warm.

Remove chicken from oven, plate, and top with sauce.

Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas

1 lb chicken breast, diced

1 medium onion, chopped

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

8 flour tortillas, softened (8 inches each)

1 1/2 cups grated monterey jack cheese or 1 1/2 cups Mexican blend cheese, divided

1/4 cup butter

1/4 cup flour

1 (15 ounce) can chicken broth

1 cup sour cream

1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chilies


1In frypan, cook chicken and onion together in oil over medium-high heat until chicken is just done.

2Divide cooked chicken evenly between 8 tortillas; add 1 1/2 tablespoons cheese to each tortilla.

3Roll enchiladas and place seam-side down in 9x13" baking dish that has been lightly sprayed with no-stick cooking spray.

4Melt butter in a medium saucepan; stir in flour to make a roux; stir and cook until bubbly; gradually whisk in chicken broth then bring to boiling, stirring frequently.

5Remove from heat; stir in sour cream and green chiles; pour sauce evenly over enchiladas.

6Top with remaining 3/4 cup cheese (baking dish may be double-wrapped and frozen at this point) and bake at 400F for 20 minutes until cheese is melted and sauce near edges of baking dish is bubbly.