Family Favorites · New Favorite

Cheeseburger Soup

Cheeseburger Soup on a cold, Colorado day, hit the spot.  I love soups and I love cheeseburgers…so what’s not to like?

I modified the recipe a bit and added green beans so there was something green in the soup.  After eating it, I decided I will add broccoli next time for a Cheeseburger Broccoli Soup, combining another favorite.  

CHEESEBURGER SOUP

4 tablespoons butter, divided
3/4 cup chopped onion
3/4 cup shredded carrots
3/4 cup diced celery
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
1-3/4 pounds (about 4 cups) cubed peeled potatoes
4 cups chicken broth (and I added 2 additional cups of water)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 to 4 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1-1/2 cups whole milk
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup sour cream
Optional:  Add frozen green beans or fresh broccoli when you add the potatoes

  • In a large soup pot,  over medium heat, cook and crumble beef until no longer pink; drain and set aside.
  • In same saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Saute onion, carrots, celery, basil and parsley until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add broth, potatoes, ground beef, and optional green beans or broccoli; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, until potatoes are tender, 10-12 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a small skillet, melt remaining butter. Add flour; cook and stir until bubbly, 3-5 minutes. Add milk, slowly, to make a white sauce.
  • Add sauce to soup; bring to a boil. Cook and stir 2 minutes.
  • Reduce heat to low. Stir in cheese, salt and pepper; cook until cheese melts. Remove from heat; blend in sour cream.

Recipe adapted from tasteofhome.com

New Favorite

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Cold winter nights mean hearty soups in my kitchen. Broccoli Cheddar Soup is always a favorite when dining out but I’ve rarely made it.  This is a great recipe that has become a family favorite.

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BROCCOLI CHEDDAR SOUP

1 tablespoon + 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1 small/medium sweet yellow onion, diced small
1 clove garlic, peeled and minced finely
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock
2 cups fat-free half-and-half (I used regular half-and-half)
3 cups broccoli florets, diced into bite-size pieces
2 large carrots, trimmed, peeled, and finely chopped
3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika or regular paprika, optional and to taste
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder, optional and to taste
pinch cayenne pepper, optional and to taste
8 ounces grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese, with a small amount reserved for garnishing bowls

  • In a small saucepan, add 1 tablespoon butter, the diced onion, and sauté   over medium heat until the onion is translucent and barely browned, about 4 minutes. Stir intermittently.
  • Add the garlic and cook about 30 seconds, stirring constantly so it doesn’t burn. Remove from heat and set pan aside.
  • In a large heavy-bottom pot, add 4 tablespoons butter, flour, and cook over medium heat for about 3 to 5 minutes, whisking constantly, until flour is thickened. You are making a roux and it’s very important the mixture is thick or soup will never thicken properly later.
  • Slowly add the vegetable stock, whisking constantly.
  • Slowly add the half-and-half, whisking constantly.
  • Allow mixture to simmer over low heat for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until it has reduced and thickened some. Whisk intermittently to re-incorporate the ‘skin’ that inevitably forms, this is normal.
  • While mixture is simmering, chop the broccoli and carrots. After simmering 15 to 20 minutes, add the broccoli, carrots, and the onion and garlic you previously set aside.
  • Add the salt, pepper, optional paprika, optional dry mustard powder, and optional cayenne.  Stir to combine.
  • Allow soup to simmer over low heat for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until it has reduced and thickened some. Whisk intermittently to re-incorporate the ‘skin’ that inevitably forms, this is normal.
  • Optional: I used a Braun hand blender to blend the vegetables into a creamier consistency.
  • While soup simmers, grate the cheese. After simmering about 20 to 25 minutes, add most of the cheese, reserving a small amount for garnishing bowls. Stir in the cheese until melted and incorporated fully, less than 1 minute.
  • Transfer soup to bowls, garnish with reserved cheese, and serve immediately. Soup will keep airtight for 5 to 7 days in the fridge. Reheat gently in the microwave.

Recipe slightly adapted from Averiecooks.com  

Family Favorites · Gluten Free · New Favorite

Quinoa Broccoli Cheese Bites

Our girls LOVED Broccoli Rice Casserole when they were growing up and this recipe sounded delicious using quinoa instead of the traditional rice.  They were so yummy that I ate them for breakfast and as a side side for dinner. It would be great to add bits of ham or bacon for a ‘grab and go’ breakfast dish.

QUINOA BROCCOLI CHEESE BITES

3/4 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
1 1/2 cups water (or vegetable or chicken broth)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups broccoli florets, finely diced
1 cup yellow onion, finely diced
1 garlic clove, finely diced
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon paprika
crushed red pepper (optional) to taste

  • In a medium sauce pan, combine quinoa and water (or broth) and cook according to package directions. Let cool.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease muffin tins.
  • In a large bowl, combine cooled quinoa, eggs, broccoli, onion, garlic, cheese and paprika.
  • Put a heaping tablespoon of quinoa mixture into prepared muffin tins.
  • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until edges turn golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes and then gently remove from pan to cool completely.

 

Home · New Favorite

Chicken YUM YUM lives up to its name!

Great friend and neighbor, Maribeth, shared this recipe with me several months ago. She had shared with me that Chicken Yum Yum was a family favorite and I was excited to try it. For some reason, I envisioned a Chinese dish but this is true Americana comfort food. I have made it with cooked chicken breasts (a little drier) or with a whole roasted chicken.  The roasted (or rotissiere chicken from the store) wins, hands down.

This would be a great recipe to assemble the night before (sans the stuffing), adding the stuffing and butter immediately before baking.

I paired the Chicken Yum Yum with roasted broccoli and it was…YUM YUM!

CHICKEN YUM YUM

1 cooked chicken
1 cup sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 box stove top stuffing
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 stick (1/2 cup) margarine/butter

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cut chicken into bite sized pieces.  Place evenly in a 9×13″ greased pan.
  • Mix together sour cream and cream of chicken soup and pour over chicken.
  • Sprinkle box of stuffing over soup/sour cream layer.
  • Drizzle chicken broth over stuffing layer.
  • Melt 1 stick margarine or butter and drizzle over the top.
  • Bake for 60 minutes.
Family · Family Favorites

Chicken Divine…a family fav!

Chicken Divine is a recipe I discovered in the ’90s.  I wish I could recall where the recipe originated but it had the elements that my young children liked: chicken, rice, broccoli and, of course, CHEESE!  I made, they liked, repeat.

To this day, it is still a favorite and the aroma of the baking chicken with rosemary is wonderful. I sincerely hope your family enjoys as much as ours does!

CHICKEN DIVINE

3 whole chicken breasts
rosemary to taste
salt and pepper to taste
1 sliced onion
1 pound fresh or frozen broccoli
3/4 cup raw rice, cooked

CHEESE SAUCE:
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup grated, sharp Cheddar Cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Sprinkle chicken with rosemary, salt and pepper. Bake chicken at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Cool. Skin, bone and slice.
  • Prepare the rice.
  • Cook broccoli in water with salt and onion. Drain.
  • Layer chicken, then broccoli, then rice in buttered casserole.
  • Prepare the cheese sauce:   Melt butter, add flour and stir until smooth. Cook 2 minutes. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly until thickened. Add cheeses and seasonings. (I have often made 1 1/2 recipes of the sauce to put on top to make it even more moist.)
  • Pour cheese sauce over entire dish. Add more grated Parmesan on top if desired.
  • Bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until bubbly.

 

 

 

Family Favorites

Chicken Divine

Chicken Divine starts by roasting chicken breasts with savory rosemary making your mouth water, anticipating the great final dish to come.  This dish takes a while but you could easily bake the chicken breasts ahead of time.

I do not recall where I found this recipe but it’s been a family favorite for the past 20 years.  Pair Chicken Divine with a green salad, crusty bread and a nice glass of white wine.  Dinner is served!

CHICKEN DIVINE

3 whole chicken breasts
rosemary to taste
salt and pepper to taste
1 sliced onion
1 pound fresh or frozen broccoli
3/4 cup raw rice, cooked

CHEESE SAUCE:

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 cup grated, sharp Cheddar Cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

SAUCE:

  • Melt butter, add flour and stir until smooth. Cook 2 minutes. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly until thickened. Add cheeses and seasonings.

CASSEROLE:

  • Sprinkle chicken with rosemary, salt and pepper. Bake chicken at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Cool. Skin, bone and slice.
  • Cook broccoli in water with salt and onion. Drain.
  • Layer chicken, then broccoli, then rice in buttered casserole.
  • Pour cheese sauce over entire dish. Add more grated Parmesan on top if desired.

  • Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until bubbly.
Family Favorites

Curry Chicken and Broccoli Casserole…winter comfort food

Curry Chicken and Broccoli Casserole is a wonderful winter comfort food and a great way to use chicken or turkey leftovers. This recipe has been with me for years and as good as ever!

CURRY CHICKEN AND BROCCOLI CASSEROLE

Servings: 8
2 10 ounce packages frozen chopped broccoli
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1 can cream of mushroom soup
3 tablespoons sherry
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon curry powder
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons melted butter
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
4 cups diced cooked chicken
2 cups grated cheddar cheese
3 cups toasted bread crumbs
1 cup toasted sliced almonds

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cook broccoli 1/2 of the time directed. Mix with celery and onions. Place in buttered casserole 9 x 13″.
  • To make sauce, combine mushroom soup, sherry, garlic, curry powder, milk and mayonnaise, butter and pepper.
  • Heat sauce thoroughly. Add chicken to the sauce. Pour sauce mixture over broccoli mixture. Bake for 20 minutes.
  • Top casserole with toasted bread cubes, cheese and almonds (tossed together). Bake an additional 10 minutes.
Family Favorites · Vegetarian

Vegetable Pizza…cold and scrumptious!

Vegetable Pizza served cold and is a great appetizer and a family favorite.  This recipe made its way to my wooden recipe box many moons ago and has been a favorite of our family for many years.

The recipe is simple and easy to make.  Two tubes of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls, sour cream, garlic powder, dill, fresh veggies and cheese and you’re prepared.  It’s refreshing in the summer and a side dish to serve with a hearty soup.

Make an hour or two before serving and chill in the refrigerator.

VEGETABLE PIZZA

2 cans Pillsbury crescent rolls
2 cups sour cream
2 teaspoons dill weed
1 teaspoon garlic powder
chopped broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, avocado, lettuce, onion, green pepper (or your choice)
shredded cheddar cheese

  • Spread crescent rolls flat and bake in 9×13″ pan until slightly brown.  Cool.
  • Mix together sour cream, dill weed and garlic powder. Spread on cooled crust.
  • Top with chopped fresh vegetables.
  • Sprinkle top with shredded cheese.  Cut into small squares for serving.

Can half the recipe and bake on round pizza pan.

Family · New Traditions

Chicken Broccoli Dish…a new favorite comfort food

 

Recently I was joining my neighbors for dinner and wanted to make a main dish from items I had in my pantry and freezer.  I discovered this recipe in the Cornerstone Cookbook published by the Assistance League, Marshalltown, IA in 1976.    My Mother gave me this cookbook, on my 23rd birthday, and it has become one of my ‘go-to’ cookbooks.

This casserole was a hit and will now join my list of favorite recipes.

CHICKEN BROCCOLI CASSEROLE

2 packages frozen (or fresh) broccoli
2 cups chopped, cooked chicken or turkey
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup sour cream (or Greek yogurt)
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs
1/4 cup melted butter

  • Cook broccoli until tender. Arrange in bottom of buttered baking dish (9″x13″). Place two cups cooked, cubed chicken on top of broccoli.

  • Combine chicken soup, sour cream, mayonnaise, cheese, lemon juice and curry powder. Pour over chicken and broccoli.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Combine crumbs and butter and spread over top of casserole. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.