Sunday, August 26, 2012

September Menu Plan - Part 2

Well, after making meals with less servings recently and starting earlier and earlier each month, I'm finally a whole month off...hence, two September plans.  This one should legit last till October though, so that's good :)  It might even last a little longer than that since I'm going to be gone for about a week and a half at the end of September to go to Vermont for vacation (woot!).  Anyway, so I totally cheated this time because I was much too lazy to figure out calories for everything, but I wanted to make new stuff...soooooo...I got all the recipes of the Betty Crocker site so the calories were all calculated for me.  I'm doing all new meals this month, so fingers crossed I don't regret that decision.  lol :)  Here's the plan:

Pork Sausage Apple Loaf* (8 servings - 390 calories) + Parmesan Hashbrown Cups (101 calories) = 491 calories
Turkey Pumpkin Casserole* (8 servings - 350 calories) + Cream Cheese Corn (120 calories) = 470 calories
Sweet Potato Topped Shepherds Pie* (8 servings – 250 calories) + Biscuit (170 calories) = 420 calories
Taco Beef Bake w/Cheddar Biscuit Topping* (6 servings – 460 calories) + NO SIDE = 460 calories
Baked Chicken Panzanella* (6 servings – 290 calories) + Garlic Bread (153 calories) = 443 calories
Cooking in a week or so, hopefully.  Later!

September Recipe Update

Hey, I'm actually posting a recipe update BEFORE I'm cooking again...I'm doing good this month!  I figured since I only had one recipe to write an update for, I didn't have much of an excuse for continuing to procrastinate.  So here we go:

Stovetop Cheesy Chicken and Rice
All I have to say about this is "eh..."  It was okay, I guess...nothing special though, sort of bland, and majorly lacking in the texture department.  I don't anticipate having any need/reason to be making it again, so that's that!  Easiest update ever :) 

Now I'm off to work on writing Part 2 of the September Menu Plan.  My making smaller amounts earlier in the month has finally caught up with me, so I'm a whole month off now.  Soooo...back to work!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Cheesy Chicken and Rice...

Okay, this recipe was originally Slow Cooker Cheesy Chicken and Rice, until I realized I had a brain fart and scheduled myself two slow cooker recipes this month, when I only have one slow cooker. is now Stovetop Cheesy Chicken and Rice.  Although, if I make it again, I'll probably do the slow cooker thing, the info for which can be found on the original recipe at Christy Jordan's Southern Plate (it's pretty much the same, except the chicken, onions, and cream of chicken soup go in the slow cooker on low for 7-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours).  That said, here's the recipe as I made it today:

Cheesy Chicken and Rice
6 servings - 375 calories each

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (I actually used a package of tenderloins instead)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 large onion, diced
1 package Zatarains Yellow Rice Mix
2 T margarine
2 1/2 c. water
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 can corn, drained

Put the chicken, cream of chicken soup, and diced onion in a pot on the stovetop and set on low/med. low.  Make sure to watch it!  I burned mine a bit because I was multi-tasking.  While the chicken is cooking, prepare the Zatarains according to package directions with water and margarine.  When chicken mixture and rice are cooked, mix together and add corn and cheese.  Heat until the cheese is melted and everything is combined.  And you're all set :)

September Menu Plan...

Well with how busy I am this month, it's going to be mostly a remix month (sorry!).  It just goes faster to make stuff you already know how to make than it does to make new things where you're looking back at the directions every few minutes (yeah, my short-term memory isn't always fantastic).  I've still got one newbie planned for you though (marked with an asterisk as usual).  Everything I already made is linked to when I originally posted it  :)  As always, calories are calculated on 

Slow Cooker Cheesy Chicken & Rice* (375 calories) + Crescent Rolls (100 calories) – 6 servings @ 475 each
3 Envelope Roast Beef (261 calories) + Risotto w/Peas &Parmesan (165 calories) – 6 servings @ 426 each
Chicken & Broccoli Pie (306 calories) + Crescent Rolls (100 calories) – 4 servings @ 406 each
Lasagna (435 calories) – 8 servings @ 435 each
Sausage Rolls (334 calories) + Cheesy Cauliflower Pancakes (123 calories) – 6 servings @ 457 each

That's all for recipe later :)

August Recipe Update...

Alrighty, running behind again this month and doing my recipe update on the same day as posting my new menu plan AND cooking...woot!  Things have been crazy lately...I almost skipped the cooking thing this month entirely, because there just wasn't a really convenient time to do it, and I've got so many things to do.  But then, I remembered, if I do that I'll just eat like crap all month getting takeout and whatnot, and drop way too much money in the process, so cooking wins out again! 

Anyway, all that said, here's how last month's stuff turned out:

Crash Hot Sweet Potatoes -
Despite the fact that these didn't crisp up like the were supposed to, and that I had trouble smashing them like they were supposed to be, they did turn out rather tasty.  The flavor was good with a good level of seasoning.  The texture wound up being really soft and smooth, and like maybe they could almost become mashed potatoes if you added a little extra effort, so I might just consider doing that next time instead.  Either way, worth making again.

Beef Enchilada Pie -
Delicious!  I'll definitely be making this again.  It had all the flavor of the Santa Fe Enchilada Bake I made a couple of months ago, without the texture issue of the corn tortillas.  It had a good amount of heat with the green chiles and reheated well.  Will be making this again too :)

Bacon and Caramelized Onion Mac & Cheese -
Yum!  All in all, this was a really good month for new recipes.  This one was good as well.  The sweetness of the onions really added a nice extra layer of flavor.  Hearty and reheated well.  This will make it into another rotation at some point, for sure.

Crockpot Cube Steak -
As I said in the original post, I misread the instructions for the sauce a bit, so I would definitely make it a point to use a gravy mix next time to thicken it up.  The taste was good, although I'd probably scale back the time on the crockpot by a seemed a tiny bit overcooked.  I'll give it another go in the future and tweak it a little bit for a better turnout.

Lazy Sunday Casserole -
 This was awesome.  I'm really glad I used the hot italian sausage, because it added some heat that went well with some of the vegetables that added sweetness to balance it all out.  Very hearty...probably wouldn't have needed a side with it afterall.  I'll be making this again as well :)

Stay tuned for the menu plan for next month shortly!