Thursday, March 19, 2009

From Parents Magazine

Beef and Bean Tortilla Casserole

Makes: 8 servings Bake: at 375 degree F for 45 minutes Cook: 9 minutes Prep: 15 minutes View Nutrition Facts
1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
2 teaspoons hot chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
2-1/2 cups prepared reduced-sodium salsa (such as Muir Glen Organic or Green Mountain Gringo)
8 fajita-size flour tortillas
1 can (15 ounces) red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups shredded reduced-fat taco cheese blend (such as Sargento)
1. Heat oven to 375°. Coat a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
2. Spray a large nonstick skillet with nonstick cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat. Crumble in ground beef and onion. Cook for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add chili powder, cumin and salt and cook 1 minute. Stir in 1 cup of the salsa and heat through.
3. Line the prepared baking dish with 2 of the tortillas. Cut a third tortilla into pieces, and use some of the pieces to completely cover bottom of dish. In a medium-size bowl, coarsely mash the beans and stir in 1 cup of the salsa. Spoon mixture evenly over the tortillas in the baking dish. Sprinkle 2/3 cup of the cheese over the top.
4. Place another layer of tortillas (and tortilla pieces) over beans and cheese. Evenly spoon beef mixture over tortillas. Sprinkle with 2/3 cup of the cheese. Place the remaining tortillas over the beef and cheese layer. Top with the remaining 1/2 cup salsa and the rest of the cheese.
5. Cover with foil and bake at 375° for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to set for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Chicken & Bean Stew

Makes: 6 servings Prep: 15 minutes Slow Cook: 3-1/2 hours on HIGH or 5-1/2 hours on LOW View Nutrition Facts
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed
1 large onion, sliced
1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes with pepper, celery and onions (such as Hunt's), drained
3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 cup frozen corn
3/4 cup frozen lima beans
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
4 cups prepared mashed potatoes (optional)
1. Stir together chicken, onion, tomatoes, broth, cayenne and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper in slow cooker bowl. Cover and cook on HIGH for 3 hours or LOW for 5 hours.
2. Remove chicken from slow cooker and cut into 1-inch pieces. Return chicken to slow cooker and stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper, frozen corn and lima beans (no need to thaw) and the mustard. Cook 30 minutes more.
3. Serve with mashed potatoes, if desired.

Slow-Cooker Mediterranean Pork Roast

Makes: 8 servings Slow Cook: 3 hours on HIGH or 6 hours on LOW Prep: 15 minutes View Nutrition Facts
2 fennel bulbs, trimmed and sliced
1 boneless pork loin roast (about 3 pounds), trimmed
4 teaspoons Greek seasoning mix (such as McCormick)
4 plum tomatoes, chopped
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons low-sodium chicken broth
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespons cornstarch
1-1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup chopped black olives (optional)
1. Place fennel in slow cooker bowl. Rub pork with 1 teaspoon of the Greek seasoning and place in bowl on top of fennel.
2. Scatter tomatoes around pork. Pour 1/3 cup of the broth in bowl; top with 2 teaspoons Greek seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper. Cook 3 hours on HIGH or 6 hours on LOW.
3. Blend remaining 2 tablespoons broth, the cornstarch and Worcestershire. Remove pork to a serving platter; keep warm. Strain liquid from slow cooker into a small saucepan; place vegetables around pork.
4. Bring liquid to a boil over medium-high heat. Whisk in cornstarch mixture, remaining 1 teaspoon Greek seasoning and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and black pepper; cook 1 minute. Spoon sauce over pork. Sprinkle with olives, if desired.

Honey Barbecue Ham with Roasted Potatoes

Makes: 12 servings Cook: 5 minutes on stovetop, then in slow-cooker for 2 hours on HIGH or 5 hours on LOW Prep: 10 minutes View Nutrition Facts
1/2 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons dark-brown sugar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon plus 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
3-1/2 pounds fully cooked boneless ham
3 pounds potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1. In a small saucepan, stir together ketchup, vinegar, sugar, Worcestershire, 1 teaspoon oil and mustard. Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.
2. Score surface of ham, making diamond shapes 1/2-inch deep. Place ham in a 4- to 5-quart slow cooker and brush generously with the barbecue sauce.
3. In a large bowl, stir together potatoes and remaining tablespoon of vegetable oil. Place potatoes around ham in slow cooker. Cook for 2 hours on HIGH or 5 hours on LOW, brushing ham generously with sauce once every hour.
4. Remove ham from slow cooker and set aside. Stir parsley, salt and pepper into potatoes and serve with ham and remaining sauce.

Corn Chowder

Makes: 6 servings Prep: 15 minutes Cook: slow cook 2 hours, 40 minutes on HIGH; 4 hours, 10 minutes on LOW View Nutrition Facts
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 medium-size carrots, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 large Idaho potato (about 1 pound), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
3 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 bay leaf
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/8 teaspoon paprika
4 cups frozen corn kernels
2 cups milk
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons white wine
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
3/4 teaspoon salt
5 slices ready-to-serve bacon (such as Oscar Meyer), prepared according to package directions and crumbled
1. Place oil in a 4- to 6-quart stovetop-safe slow-cooker bowl over medium-high heat on stovetop. Cook carrot, celery and onion for 7 minutes or until softened.
2. Transfer to slow-cooker base and add potatoes to bowl. Pour broth over top and add bay leaf, dried thyme and paprika. Cover and cook on HIGH for 1-1/2 hours or LOW for 3 hours, or until potatoes are cooked through.
3. Stir in corn and milk; cover and cook for 1 hour or until heated through.
4. In a small bowl, stir together cornstarch and wine and whisk into soup; cook an additional 10 minutes. Stir in fresh thyme and salt.
5. Using a potato masher, gently mash the soup until slightly thickened. Sprinkle each serving with a generous 1/2 tablespoon crumbled bacon and serve immediately.

Beef Tostadas

Makes: 12 tostadas Prep: 15 minutes Microwave: 1-1/2 minutes Slow Cook: 6 hours on HIGH or 8 hours on LOW. View Nutrition Facts
1-1/2 pounds boneless beef round steak
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup lime juice
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped
1 large onion, chopped
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
12 packaged tostada or hard taco shells
3/4 cup fat-free refried beans
1-1/2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
1 cup reduced-fat shredded Mexican-blend cheese
3/4 cup salsa
1. Sprinkle steak with salt and pepper. Place 3 tablespoons of the lime juice, the garlic, jalapeño, onion, chili powder, cumin and cayenne in a slow cooker. Place beef on top and cook on HIGH for 6 hours or LOW for 8 hours.
2. Remove beef to a cutting board and when cool enough to handle, shred with fingers or using two forks. Place shredded beef in a large bowl.
3. Strain remaining liquid in slow cooker over a bowl or measuring cup, discarding solids. Add strained liquid and remaining 1 tablespoon lime juice to beef in bowl and stir to combine. Cover; keep warm.
4. Warm tostada shells in oven according to package directions. While tostadas are baking, heat refried beans in microwave for 1-1/2 minutes on HIGH, stirring halfway through until warm and spreadable.
5. Spread each tostada with 1 tablespoon refried beans. Place 1/3 cup beef over beans and divide lettuce equally among tostadas. Top each with 1 heaping tablespoon cheese and 1 tablespoon salsa.

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

Makes: 6 servings Prep: 10 minutes Cook: 2 minutes Chill: at least 1 hour Slow Cook: 6 hours on HIGH or 8 hours on LOW View Nutrition Facts
2-1/2 tablespoons dark-brown sugar
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 boneless pork butt or shoulder (about 2-1/2 pounds), trimmed
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons ketchup
6 hamburger buns
1. In a small bowl, stir together 1 tablespoon of the sugar, the paprika, chili powder, cumin and pepper; set aside.
2. Lay pork on work surface and sprinkle on all sides with spice rub; rub well into meat. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight.
3. Unwrap pork and place in slow cooker with chicken broth. Cover and cook on HIGH for 6 hours or LOW for 8 hours. Remove pork from slow cooker and cut into large chunks; let stand for 20 minutes or until cool enough to handle.
4. While pork is cooling, pour cooking liquid into a fat separator. Pour de-fatted liquid into small saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat. Whisk in vinegar, ketchup and remaining 1-1/2 tablespoons brown sugar. Cook until sugar has dissolved, about 2 minutes; set aside.
5. Using forks or your hands, pull meat into shreds, discarding excess fat, and place in bowl. Stir in sauce and put 1/2 cup meat on each bun. Serve immediately.

Red Beans and Rice

Makes: 6 servings Cook: 8 minutes Prep: 10 minutes Slow Cook: 3-1/2 hours on HIGH, 5 hours on LOW View Nutrition Facts
1 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 small green pepper, finely chopped
1 rib celery, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning (such as McCormick)
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 pound dried red kidney beans, rinsed and picked over
1 large chicken bouillon cube
3 cups water
1/2 pound Lite kielbasa, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch half moons
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 cups cooked white rice
1. Heat oil in a medium-size skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, green pepper and celery to skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, for 7 minutes or until softened. Add garlic and cook 1 minute.
2. Scrape contents of skilllet into slow cooker and add Cajun seasoning, bay leaves, oregano, thyme, beans, bouillon cube and water. Cook for 3-1/2 hours on HIGH or 5 hours on LOW or until beans are soft and liquid has thickened.
3. Stir in sausage and black pepper. Cook an additional 15 minutes or until heated through. Discard bay leaves and serve over rice.

Nacho Casserole

Cook: 5 minutes Prep: 10 minutes Bake: 35 minutes View Nutrition Facts
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 pound presliced sweet peppers (about 1/2 inch wide)
1 pound lean ground beef
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
2 ounces each) refrigerated pizza dough
1 medium -hot salsa
3 cups preshredded taco cheese blend
1 can (2.2 ounces) sliced black olives, drained (about 1/4 cup)
3 large scallions, sliced
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Coat 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
2. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the sweet peppers, ground beef and garlic salt; cook, stirring to break up clumps of beef, until the peppers are softened and beef is no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Carefully drain off any excess fat from the skillet.
3. Remove the pizza dough from the tubes. Cut the dough crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices, then cut each slice into quarters.
4. In a large bowl, toss together the dough pieces and salsa. Add the cooked meat mixture, 2 cups of the shredded taco cheese blend and the olives. Scrape mixture into baking dish. Sprinkle the remaining 1 cup shredded taco cheese blend over the top.
5. Bake in 375 degree F oven for 30 minutes. Sprinkle the scallions evenly over the top. Bake for another 5 minutes. Makes 8 servings.

Beef And Broccoli Potatoes
Makes: 6 servings Cook: 10 minutes Broil: 2 to 3 minutes View Nutrition Facts
6 medium-size baking potatoes (about 3 pounds total), scrubbed and pierced with fork
1 pound ground beef
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian herb seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 package (12 ounces) broccoli slaw
1 container (10 ounces) refrigerated reduced-fat alfredo sauce
1-1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup milk
Pinch ground nutmeg
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
1. Place baking potatoes on paper towel in microwave oven. Microwave on 100% power for 16 to 18 minutes or until knife-tender, turning once. Remove potatoes; wrap each in foil. Let stand 5 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, heat large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add ground beef; cook until no longer pink, 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Add broccoli slaw; cook, stirring, until slaw is wilted, 3 to 4 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, in small bowl, whisk together alfredo sauce, 1/2 cup of cheddar, the milk and nutmeg. Stir into beef mixture in skillet; cook until heated through and cheese is melted, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
4. Heat broiler.
5. Unwrap potatoes, leaving foil in place. Slice potatoes in half lengthwise on top. Gently push ends to slightly open tops. Transfer potatoes in foil to baking sheet or broiler pan. Season with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Scoop 3/4 cup of beef mixture into each split potato. Sprinkle each potato with about 2 tablespoons of remaining cheddar.
6. Broil stuffed potatoes 6 inches from heat until cheese melts and bubbles slightly, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve potatoes while still warm.