Mexican “Pollo Con Crema” Chicken

D7111BFA-230D-45CE-A3EA-161FEFFEAE0F“Pollo Con Crema” is my absolute favorite Mexican chicken dish. I always order it when we go out for Mexican so of course I had to recreate it at home and I am so glad I did! It tastes so much better home made and is fast and easy to make so perfect for a busy weeknight. I pair it with Spanish rice (recipe below) and highly recommend you make both recipes together!

Mexican “Pollo Con Crema” Chicken {Serves 4-6} :

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 Boneless/Skinless Chicken Breasts (cut into thin strips)
  • 2 TBS Olive Oil
  • 1 Large Sweet Onion (cut into thin strips)
  • 1 Pack Mushrooms (sliced thick)
  • 2 Green Bell Peppers (sliced into thin strips)
  • 1 (16 oz.) Container Sour Cream
  • 1.5 Cups Heavy Cream
  • 2 Tablespoons “Better then bullion” Chicken base
  • Salt/Pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp Paprika
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper (for a spicy kick, to your preference)
  • Montreal Chicken Seasoning

 

Directions:

1) Do the prep work first. Wash and cut all the veggies and Chicken breast. Heat olive oil in a large pan on Med-High heat. Add the chicken breast and season it with salt/pepper and Montreal chicken seasoning.

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2) Cook until chicken cooks all the way through and gets golden.  Then add in the onion, mushrooms, bell pepper, and cook until the onion is soft and translucent and all veggies are soft and cooked through well.

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3) Add in the heavy cream and chicken base. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.

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4) Stir in the sour cream, sprinkle in the paprika and cayenne pepper and turn burner off and mix well. The cream should be a creamy but slightly thick consistency. Serve with my amazing Spanish rice, some warm tortillas, and Mexican beans or avocado on the side for the perfect Mexican dinner!

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Spanish Rice (Restaurant Style)

83B36211-669B-4AF4-8047-60B0ABE1877DLately we have been really into Mexican restaurants. I always order the same dish “Pollo Con Crema” which is chicken in a white sour cream sauce and it comes with Spanish rice and a side of beans and tortillas, Yum!!! I wanted to experiment and try cooking a new cuisine at home so we decided on Mexican. I made this Spanish rice and the chicken in sour cream sauce dishes for dinner and they both turned out amazing!!! My husband said it tastes better then the restaurant dishes and I completely agree with him! The good news is I have mastered these 2 new, family favorite Mexican dishes. This Spanish/Mexican rice is surprisingly easy and pairs well with any Mexican dish or even taco’s but I highly suggest making it with my “Pollo Con Crema” recipe that I will be posting next. Enjoy!

Spanish/Mexican Rice (Restaurant Style) {Serves 8-10}: 

Ingredients: 

  • 2 Cups Long Grain Rice (I used Jasmine Rice)
  • 1/4 Cup Oil (I used Olive Oil)
  • 4 Cups Chicken broth (I used “Chicken Better Then Boillon” with 4 cups water)
  • 12 oz Salsa (I used Mild)
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Garlic cloves (minced)
  • Pepper to taste (a dash)
  • Cumin (a dash)

6C367411-BF52-4E2B-B1DD-AA4FC2D440EADirections:

1) Make 4 cups of chicken bouillon and set it aside. In a large skillet, heat oil on Medium heat.

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2) Add rice to the skillet and cook it starts to crisp to a golden brown color. About 3-5 minutes, stirring continually.

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3) Add the chicken broth, salsa, salt/pepper, garlic cloves, cumin into the rice and mix gently to combine.

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4) Stir and cover the pan. Simmer on low heat for 30-40 minutes until rice is cooked through and there is no liquid left. I opened and gently mixed rice with a spatula twice while it was cooking.

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Garlic, Lemon, Herb Baked Salon

6E1B01DE-0795-4B7B-B9AE-CBA72D9873A2This garlic, lemon, herb baked salmon is absolutely delicious!!! It has become my favorite week night dinner because it takes just a few minutes to prep and bakes in only 10 minutes! That’s right, only 10 minutes! However it is so juicy and flavorful, it tastes just like a gourmet restaurant dish. I usually pair it with mashed potatoes or rice and salad for a complete meal. I got the idea for this recipe from my friend Candice, who I met through Open Hearts And Homes hosting company and she is currently in the process of adopting a beautiful boy from Ukraine! She brought this yummy salmon to an OHHC hosting Christimas party this past year and I couldn’t get enough of it! I knew I had to find out who brought that salmon and get the recipe so of course I did and it has been on my “to cook” list for the past few months. Note, adding lemon juice was my idea but it makes the salmon even more juicy, flavorful, and delicious but it is optional. I finally got around to trying this recipe last week and mine turned out incredible too! I am still shocked at how super easy and fast this recipe is! It has seriously got to be the easiest dinner ever and healthy too? Score! My new favorite way to bake salmon. Enjoy!!!

Garlic, Lemon, Herb Baked Salmon {Serves 4-5 as a meal}

Ingredients:

  • 1 Salmon Fillet (Mine was 2.60 LB I bought it at Costco, antibiotic free)
  • Olive Oil (About 3 TBS)
  • Salt & Peper (to taste)
  • Garlic, and Herb spice (Salt free)
  • 1 Lemon

Note: I cut my salmon fillet in half because I only needed 2 servings, and made the other half of salmon the next day for dinner. Some pictures you will see are from the 2nd day that I made this salmon for dinner. I split the ingredients in half also (half a lemon etc).

Directions:

1) Wash the salmon fillet and tap it dry with paper towels. Line a baking sheet with foil and brush the foil with about 1.5 TBS olive oil.  Lay the washed/patted dry salmon fillet on the oil brushed foil. Brush another 1.5 to 2 TBS olive oil all over the salmon fillet and brush around to evenly distribute the oil.

2) Preheat the over to the BROIL setting. Squeeze the lemon juice onto the salmon fillet. Sprinkle salt & pepper on it. Then generously sprinkle the garlic & herb spice all over the salmon fillet. Using the brush rub all the oil, lemon juice, and spices together on the salmon fillet.

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3) When the oven preheats to broil, stick the salmon fillet in the over and let it bake on broil for 10 minutes. Then turn the oven off and let the salmon bake another 2 to 4 minutes.

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When baked and ready it should look golden on the outside like this:

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4) Take it out of the oven when ready to serve, cut as desired and dig in! I like to pair it with mashed potatoes or rice and a salad.

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Roasted Red Bell Pepper & Gouda Soup

5E1F7906-00B4-4E63-AAB4-BF58C72B39C2My hubby and I first tried this delicious soup at Dean & Deluca and I knew I had to recreate it at home. Of course I did just that and it tastes almost exactly like Dean & Deluca, except that I don’t put dry roasted red bell pepper into my soup. This soup is creamy, comforting and just perfect for a chilly winter day like today and was a hit with my hubby! The best part is how easy it is to make and that it’s a gluten free/low carb recipe. We are gearing up for a healthier lifestyle and healthier eating in the new year and I am on the lookout for healthy recipes already because it’s never too early to start the next new year’s resolutions now. I hope you love this recipe as much as we did! 🙂

Roasted Red Bell Pepper Guada Soup {Serves 4-6}:

Ingredients:

  • 1 Medium Onion (finely diced)
  • 3 Garlic Cloves (minced)
  • 2 TBS Butter
  • 17 oz Jar Roasted Red Peppers
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans Fire Roasted Tomatoes
  • 2 TBS Tomato Paste
  • 3 Cups Filtered Water & 3 TBS Better Than Bouillion Paste (Or 3 Cups chicken stock)
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 2 tsp Basil
  • 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Pepper
  • 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 8 oz Guada Cheese (Shredded)

Directions:

1) In a medium pot, melt 2 TBS butter on Med-high heat (I did 7.5). Add the diced onion and cook until soft and translucent. Then add minced garlic and stir for a minute until fragrant.

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2) Add the Roasted Red Peppers, Fire Roasted Tomatoes, Tomato Paste, Chicken broth/stock, Oregano, Basil, Salt & Pepper. Mix until well combined. Bring to a boil. Then cover with lid, lower the heat to a low simmer (I did 1.5) and let it simmer for 1 hour.

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3) When soup is done simmering for 1 hour, transfer to blender and blend to a smooth pure or use a hand blender. Then transfer back to the pot. Add heavy cream and shredded guada cheese. Mix well and let it simmer on low for another 30 minutes.

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4) Serve hot with some oyster crackers and enjoy!

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How To Make Taco’s

9D925FF1-FDEB-42E1-AD4B-CE0849B00DF6Yesterday was Taco Tuesday at our house. Yum!!! Even my picky son, who hardly ever eats anything, ate 4 taco’s yesterday evening for dinner! I was surprised but so thrilled. Upon going to bed, he told me that this was the best dinner ever and that’s something this momma was so glad to hear! I think we may make Taco Tuesdays a weekly thing at our house now since it proved to be such a hit with my family. The best part about a taco dinner is how easy and fast everything is to prepare so it is perfect for a weeknight dinner. I think the fun part is everyone making their own perfect taco so this is also a great dinner to make if you have company coming over. This is not really a recipe because everyone knows pretty much what a taco consists of, this is just my step by step tutorial for those that reached out to me asking about how I make the meat filling and stuff. I hope you make next Tuesday a taco Tuesday too! 😉

How To Make Taco’s {Serves 6-8 people}

Ingredients:

  • 2 LB Ground Beef
  • 2 (1.25 oz) Packets (Ortega Brand) Taco Seasoning Mix (I use the 40% Less Sodium)
  • Taco Sauce (Mild) (Optional, to top)
  • 2 Boxes of Taco Shells (13-15 Count) *I like the stand & stuff shells, so much easier
  • 1 Large tomatoe
  • Romaine Lettuce (Or regular lettuce)
  • 1 (8oz) Block Sharp Cheddar Cheese (Shredded)
  • 1 Container Sour Cream (Optional, to top)
  • 2 TBS Olive Oil (For Sauté)

9CEEC5C6-CF37-48C2-A86F-6B8066A6C96FDirections:

1) Do all the prep work first. Wash and chop up the Romain lettuce, set aside in a plate. Wash and finely chop up the tomato, set aside in a plate. Shredd the block of Cheddar Cheese, set aside in a plate.

2) In a saucepan on Med-High heat add 2 TBS Olive Oil. When the oil heats up, add the ground beef, break it into pieces using a spatula.

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3) Add the packets of Taco Seasoning. You need 1 packet of seasoning for 1 pound of ground beef. I use Ortega brand 40% less sodium packets bc I don’t like my meat to be too salty and using regular packets of seasoning in my opinion make it too salty. Mix thoroughly and cook until the meat has browned and is cooked through (about 15-20 minutes). Meanwhile bake the taco shells on 350 degrees in the oven for 5-7 mins until hot (be careful not to burn them).

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4) Set up a “taco station” on the table with all the toppings in plates, the meat, the taco shells, taco sauce, and sour cream.

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Everyone creates their own perfect taco! Yum!!!

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Mediterranean Style Jasmine Rice

IMG_0463This Mediterranean style jasmine rice is literally the BEST rice I have ever tried! I don’t throw the word best around lightly you now. I tried it at a Mediterranean restaurant once and got hooked so I knew I had to recreate the recipe at home and I did just that. This rice pairs perfectly with any kind of meat, but especially with a yummy rack of lamb. Stay tuned for that recipe next and you will have the perfect Mediterranean style dinner!

Mediterranean Style Jasmine Rice {Yields 6 Cups rice abt 4 Servings}:

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups Uncooked, Long Grain, Jasmine Rice
  • 3 Cups Chicken Broth (I used the Better The Bouillon Paste and it worked great!)
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter (Unsalted)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves (Minced)
  • 1 teaspoon Turmeric Spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cumin Spice

1) Wash the rice thoroughly and set aside. If using Better Then Bouillon chicken paste instead of Chicken Broth, in a small sauce pan boil 3 cups of water. When the water comes to a boil, add the Better Then Bouillon paste (3 teaspoons) and mix well, to make a hearty chicken broth and set aside.

2) In a medium sized pot, add the butter, garlic, cumin, and turmeric. Sauté over medium heat for 2-3 minutes until the garlic has softened and spices give off a yummy fragrance.

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3) Add the dry rice to the pot and stir to combine for about 3 minutes to slightly toast the rice.

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4) Add the chicken broth (or Better Then Bouillon broth) and 1 bay leaf to the pot. Mix well. Bring to a rolling boil.IMG_0461

5) Cover with lid and simmer on LOW heat for about 15 minutes, until the rice is cooked through. I opened the pot and mixed the rice 2-3 times to keep it from sticking to the pot.

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6) Fluff with a fork and your rice is ready to serve! This rice reheats well. IMG_0463

 

The Best Home Made Salsa

IMG_0441This is a recipe for the best home made salsa! I found the basic recipe on google and just changed a few things up to my liking. Not only is this the best tasting home made salsa, it is also the easiest to make and yields a big batch! So it is perfect for entertaining or bringing to an event. I made a batch for a cook out a few weeks ago and for a party recently, both times it was a big hit! Nearly all of it was gone. Keep in mind you will need 2 bags of tortilla chips for this much salsa. I like to get Trader Joe’s, no salt tortilla chips because they are perfect and not too salty. Anyway, once you try this delicious home made salsa, you will never go back to store bought salsa again!

The Best Home Made Salsa {Yields about 12 Cups Salsa}:

Ingredients:

  • 1 (28 oz) can peeled tomatoes
  • 2 cans Rotel Brand Tomatoes and Green Chilies (Mild)
  • 1 Bunch of Cilantro
  • 1 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 Small Onion (or 1/2 of a big onion)
  • Juice from 1/2 Lime (1 whole lime, if a smaller lime)
  • 1/2 Jalapeño Pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cumin

IMG_0438Directions: 

1) Do all the prep work first. Open the can of tomatoes and tomatoes with green chilies. Wash and finely cut the cilantro leaves. Desead the finely chop the jalapeño pepper. Chop the onion. Finely mince garlic clove.

2) Put the can of tomatoes, can of Rotel tomatoes & chilies, cilantro, garlic, onion, and jalapeño pepper into a big bowl and puree in a blender or food processor in 2 parts. I used a blender, and pulsed each batch 4 times for a quick second but feel free to make yours any consistancy you like.

3) Pour puréed mixture into a big bowl (with a lid). Add the lime juice, salt, sugar, and cumin spice. Mix and refrigerate for at least a few hours for best taste!

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Serve with your favorite tortilla chips!

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Summer Squash Soup

IMG_0416Nothing tastes more like summer then this summer squash soup! I got the idea for this recipe after trying this soup at Dean & Deluca restaurant and getting absolutely hooked to this soup so I knew I had to recreate this yummy recipe at home! To my surprise, this soup tastes better on the second day because all the yummy flavors get to blend overnight. For a vegan version or less calories, you can omit the heavy cream but I highly suggest adding it because it gives the soup an extra creamy flavor. This recipe is perfect for busy summer days because it’s the easiest squash soup recipe ever, yet the most delicious so it’s a win win!

Summer Squash Soup {Serves 8}

Ingredients:

  • 2.5-3 LB Butternut Squash, cubed
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, chopped
  • 2 Celery Ribs, chopped
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 3 Garlic Cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon 21 Seasoning, Mrs.Dash, or any Salt-Free seasoning

IMG_0415Instructions:

1) Do the prep work first. Wash  all the veggies. Peel the squash, chop it into large cubes. Chop the bell pepper into cubes. Chop the celery and onion into cubes. Peel the garlic cloves and chop in halves.

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2) In a medium pot, add all the cut veggies, sugar and salt. Mix and add enough filtered water to cover all the veggies. (About 6 Cups water). Bring to a boil on high heat.

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3) Once the water boils, put the lid on the pot, and let is simmer on the Low setting for about 35-40 minutes, until all the veggies are tender.

4) Once the veggies cook through, add the veggies and water to a blender and pure to a smooth consistency. I had to divide the soup into 3 batches to blend it all. If you have a hand held immersion blender, that would be much easier.

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5) Transfer the soup pure to a big pot. Add the heavy cream, seasoning, and mix.

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6) Laddle the soup into bowls and enjoy! If you’d like to warm the soup up more, just heat it up on medium heat. Tastes just as great, if not better, on the second day!

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Creamy Tomato Basil Soup

IMG_0120This tomato basil soup is creamy and dreamy! One of our new favorite family recipes. We get this soup all the time at Dean & Deluca restaurant and I really wanted to recreate the same tasting soup at home, so I did just that! This recipe requires very minimal ingredients so it is budget friendly and the best part is how fast it is to cook. With prep work and total cook time it only takes about 45 minutes! I made this soup for our friends and for a ladies night event at my house and both times it was a hit. Even my picky 5 year old loves this soup, with oyster crackers of course! Mmmm this soup is perfect for the cold and windy weather we have today! Enjoy! 🙂

Creamy Tomato 🍅 Basil 🌿 Soup {Serves 4-5}

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 Tomatoes (Peeled & De-seeded)
  • 1.5 to 2 Cups Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 6 Cups Tomato Juice (Organic)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon Basil Leaves Spice
  • 1 Tablespoon Dried Basil Leaves (And more to garnish soup)
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter (Unsalted)
  • Salt/Pepper to taste
  • Oyster Crackers (optional, to top)

IMG_0116Directions:

1) Peel the tomatoes using a peeler. Cut them into 4 and de-seed them. Put tomatoes into a medium pot, add in the 4 cups of tomato juice. Bring to a boil, then cover with lid and let it simmer for 25-30 minutes.

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2) Transfer the cooked tomato and tomato juice mixture into a blender. Blend until it turns into a puree/smoothie consistency.

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3) Transfer the puréed tomato mixture back to the pot.

4) Turn the heat up to low-medium (I did 4). Add 1 cup of heavy whipping cream. Add the Italian Seasoning, Basil Leaves Spice and Dried Basil Leaves. Then add 2 Tablespoons butter. Sprinkle salt/pepper according to your preference, you don’t need much salt because the tomato juice already has salt in it. Mix, everything together and let it simmer for about 5 minutes, don’t let it come to a boil.

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5) Serve hot, with Oyster Crackers on the side. Sprinkle each bowl of soup with a little more dried basil leaves.

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Baked Teriyaki Chicken Thighs

img_0083These teriyaki chicken thighs are a great option if you are craving some chinese takeout but also want to eat healthy too. I came up with this recipe idea myself and made it for dinner when we had friends over. Needless to say, they turned out great! You know The food is good, when people reach for seconds, that’s the best compliment to any chef! These teriyaki chicken thighs are super delicious, restaurant quality and best part is how easy and fast this recipe is. Just make sure you give it at least 8 hours or over night to marinate for best teriyaki flavor! Enjoy!

Baked Teriyaki Chicken Thighs {Serves 4-6}

Ingredients:

  • 8 Chicken Thighs (Organic, Bone in, Skin on)
  • Seasoning: Salt, Pepper, Garlic Salt, Montreal Chicken Seasoning, Meat Tenderizer Seasoning
  • Teriyaki Marinade & Sauce (1/2 Cup)
  • Korean Teriyaki Sauce (About 1/2 Cup)

 

Directions:

1) Wash the chicken thighs thoroughly. Pat dry with paper towels. On a paper plate or sheet of foil, season both sides of each chicken thigh one at a time. *Keep in mind the Teriyaki marinade and sauce both have salt in them so be careful with the salt and only use a sprinkle of salt. On one side only of the chicken thighs. Transfer seasoned chicken thighs to a big bowl.

2) Pour 1/2 cup of the Teriyaki Marinade & Sauce over the seasoned chicken thighs. Then add 2 Tablespoons of the Korean Teriyaki Sauce also. Mix well. Cover and let it marinate in fridge over night or for at least 8 hours.

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3) When you are ready to cook Teriyaki chicken thighs: Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees. Cover a baking dish with foil, spray the foil with an oil spray. Put the chicken thighs on the foil, leaving space in between each thigh. Bake on 350 Degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

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4) When chicken thighs are done baking, take them out of the oven. Brush the Korean Teriyaki Sauce to top each chicken thigh then stick back in the oven on the Broil setting (500 Degrees) and let it bake for about 5 minutes, this makes the skin very golden and perfectly crispy.

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Great served with rice or baked potatoes and a fresh salad!

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