Rediscovering the Joy of Cooking

July 3, 2010

Chicken and Dressing Casserole

Filed under: chicken, main dish, make ahead — Emily @ 10:44 am

My friend Olivia’s mother made this for us when I was in college and visiting her family in Atlanta. It is very easy to throw together and delicious! Definitely a true Southern meal.

Chicken and Dressing Casserole

4 chicken breasts

1 can cream of chicken soup

1 can of milk (fill the soup can with milk)

1 BAG cornbread stuffing (use something better than Stovetop!)

1 stick of butter

Chicken broth, as needed

Boil the chicken in water until cooked through. Shred the chicken and put in 9×13-inch casserole dish. Add can of cream of chicken soup and the milk and mix well. Pour over chicken.

Melt the butter in a medium size bowl and add the stuffing to butter. Add in broth to make moist. Top chicken with stuffing mixture.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Source: my friend Olivia

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November 17, 2009

Pumpkin Dip

Filed under: dessert, make ahead — Emily @ 3:44 pm

I’ve seen this recipe for pumpkin dip for many years now, but for some reason I’ve always put off making it. It just didn’t sound like it would be very good. Boy was I wrong! I’m kicking myself for not making this years ago. It is SO good—and incredibly easy. It has become my go to recipe for the Fall.

Pumpkin Dip

12 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup pumpkin (canned)
4 teaspoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Beat together cream cheese and brown sugar until well blended. Add pumpkin, syrup and cinnamon; beat until smooth.  Keep refrigerated and serve with apples, gingersnaps, vanilla wafers, and graham crackers.

Source: Pennies on a Platter

October 13, 2009

Sweet-and-Sour Brisket

Filed under: beef, freezer, main dish, make ahead — Emily @ 8:48 am

This brisket is unbelievable. My husband actually said “this is the best meat dish I’ve ever eaten…” and yet, it is very easy to throw together. It is best if you make it a day or two in advance and let it marinate for awhile—it just continues to get better and better. After eating it for a day or two, buy some big, crusty sandwich rolls and enjoy it with a side of jus. Since it’s essentially just slabs of meat, the picture really doesn’t do it justice. But I promise, you will not regret making this dish.

Sweet-and-Sour Brisket

1/2 cup red wine

1 can (14 ounces) low-sodium beef broth

3/4 cup chili sauce, such as Heinz

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1 bay leaf

1 brisket (about 5 pounds)

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

4 medium yellow onions, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

To make the sweet-and-sour sauce:

Combine the wine, broth, chili sauce, vinegar, brown sugar, thyme, and bay leaf in a medium bowl. Set aside.

To prepare the brisket:

Season the brisket on both sides with kosher salt and pepper to taste. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a 6-quart pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the brisket, fat-side down, and cook until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Turn the brisket over and cook until browned, 3 to 4 minutes more. Transfer to a plate. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pot. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to caramelize, about 5 minutes. Place the brisket on top of the onions and cover with the sauce.

Cover the pot, place in the oven, and bake for 1 1/2 hours. Transfer the brisket to a cutting board, scrape off the excess fat, and cut across the grain of the meat into 1/8-1/4-inch-thick slices. Return the slices to the pot, overlapping them. Spoon the sauce over the brisket, covering the meat well. Bake until the meat is fork tender, 1 1/2 to 2 hours more.

For the best flavor, let the brisket cool, then cover and refrigerate overnight. When ready to serve, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Put the brisket in a large pot and smother with the sweet-and-sour sauce to enhance the flavor and preserve moistness. Cover and bake for 20 to 30 minutes.

Tip: This brisket freezes beautifully. Because the flavors get better over time, we refrigerate the brisket for a day or two before freezing (if you can resist eating it!) Thaw the brisket before reheating it.

Source: Bride and Groom First and Forever

October 10, 2009

Meatballs with Sour Cream and Mushrooms

Filed under: appetizers, beef, make ahead — Emily @ 11:28 am

This is a really unique recipe for meatballs. I’ve never had them before with this combination of flavors. And they definitely work! You can make these ahead of time and keep them warm in the crockpot, which is what I did. The picture isn’t the greatest. I made these for a football party and didn’t really have time to take a good picture. You can also make these into delicious meatball sandwiches!

Meatballs with Sour Cream and Mushrooms

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 cup sour cream

1/2 cup white wine and/or low-sodium chicken broth

1-2 gloves chopped garlic

handful of dried mushrooms, crumbled and sprinkled

a few tablespoons fresh chopped parsley

fresh chopped dill, to taste

salt and pepper, to taste

2 pounds meatballs

Mix all the ingredients together except the meatballs to make the sauce.

Brown the meatballs in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the sauce to the meatballs (either in the pan or in a crock pot) and heat the sauce.

Source: my mom’s friend

September 15, 2009

Beer Baked Beans

Filed under: bacon, make ahead, pork, side dish — Emily @ 8:30 am

These are some of the greatest baked beans I have ever tasted. The beer adds such a great flavor! And they are really easy to throw together. A perfect addition to a barbecue or pot luck. They are easily reheated as well so they can be made ahead.

Beer Baked Beans

6 bacon slices

1 1/2 cup chopped onion

1 1/4 cup barbecue sauce

3/4 cup dark beer (this *makes* the dish–don’t leave it out!)

1/4 cup molasses

3 tablespoons Dijon mustard

3 tablespoons dark brown sugar

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon soy sauce

4-6 teaspoons chipotles

6 15-16 oz. cans beans (Great Northern or cannellini beans)

Cook bacon to your liking and drain off fat. Cut bacon into pieces and set aside. Cook onion in a little of the bacon grease until translucent. Add the rest of the ingredients (including the cooked bacon and onion) in an ovenproof dish and cook at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Source: Epicurious

August 31, 2009

Chicken “Divine”

Filed under: chicken, freezer, main dish, make ahead, pasta — Emily @ 6:00 am

I got this recipe from one of my favorite cookbooks that I received at a wedding shower—over 5 years ago! Even though I now live in California and grew up in Chicago, I still reminice fondly of our time in Nashville¬† and feel very connected to some of the Southern heritage and cooking! This is a spin on the classic Southern dish, Chicken Divan. This dish comes together very quick and can be made a day in advance. I saw a Paula Deen show once where she said that chicken divan should be in every wife’s repertoire. I’d never even had it before, so I figure I better get on it!

Chicken “Divine”

4 cups fresh broccoli florets, or 2 packages (10 oz. each) frozen broccoli florets, thawed

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme, or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup dry white wine (I usually use 2 buck Chuck chardonnay)

1 jar (16 oz.) Alfredo sauce

2 cups (4 oz.) grated smoked Gouda or Edam cheese

1/2 cup milk

1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

4 cups cooked penne, macaroni or orecchiette (about 3 cups dried)

2 cups shredded roast chicken, home cooked or purchased

1/4 cup dry Italian-style bread crumbs

Paprika for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

If using fresh broccoli, cook the florets in a steamer until tender-crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Rinse with cold water to stop the cooking and drain thoroughly. If using thawed frozen broccoli, squeeze out the excess liquid. Set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, thyme, kosher salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Add the wine, increase the heat to high, and cook until the liquid has evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the Alfredo sauce, 1/2 cup of the cheese, the milk, and nutmeg. Then stir in the cooked pasta, broccoli, and chicken and mix thoroughly.

Transfer to an 8 or 9-inch square baking dish. Top with the remaining 1 1/2 cups cheese and the bread crumbs. Sprinkle with paprika, cover with aluminum foil, and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes more.

Tip: This casserole can be made 1 day in advance and refrigerated. It can also be assembled and then frozen. If the casserole was frozen, thaw in the refrigerator and bake as directed.

Source: Bride & Groom First and Forever

One thing I love about this cookbook is that it has a lot of recipes with only 2-4 servings, so it’s perfect for a married couple or an intimate dinner party.

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