Friday, July 16, 2010

Ham and Cheese Bowtie

8 ounces farfalle (bow tie) pasta
1/4 cup butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups milk (I used 2 1/2 c. to make it a little runnier)
1/2 teaspoon prepared mustard
2 1/2 cups shredded Colby cheese
4 ounces cooked ham (I used chicken; cubed 3 chicken breats and made sure to season it)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
2.Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes: drain.
3.In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Saute garlic 30 seconds. Whisk in flour, salt and pepper. Cook and stir until smooth. Pour in milk, a little at a time, stirring constantly. Bring to a boil for 1 minute. Stir in mustard and Colby. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until cheese is melted. Remove from heat and stir in pasta and ham.
4.Pour into a 2 quart baking dish. Sprinkle with Parmesan.
5.Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until bubbly and golden

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Steak Gorgonzola


1 (2 1/2 lb) boneless beef top sirloin steaks
1 1/2 cups Italian dressing
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 lb uncooked fettuccine pasta
4 cups chopped spinach
2 cups alfredo sauce (buy your own or prepare using ingredients below)
1/2 cup chopped green onion
3 tablespoons gorgonzola, crumbled
2 tablespoons gorgonzola (for sprinkling on top of finished dish)
2 tablespoons chopped sun-dried tomatoes (didn't use this)
2 tablespoons balsamic glaze (buy your own or prepare using ingredients below)

(for alfredo sauce)-we just used our own
1 1/2 cups white milk
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup imported parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 cup imported romano cheese, grated
6 jumbo egg yolks
salt and black pepper

(for balsamic glaze)
1 (8 ounce) bottle balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup sugar (we used splenda)

1. A key to this recipe is marinating the steak for at least 1 hour, I prefer half a day or more. If you will be making your own alfredo sauce and/or balsamic reduction these can and should be done first. They can then be refrigerated for future use or set on a back burner until the steak and pasta are cooked.
3. Cut beef into 1/2" cubes and set aside.
4. Add the italian dressing to the beef, toss and let marinate for at least 1 hours
6. Heat the milk and cream in a heavy bottom saucepan until it comes to a simmer. Slowly whip in all the cheese, then remove from heat.
7. In a separate bowl, place the egg yolks and slowly whip in a portion of the hot milk and cream mixture. Slowly add the egg yolk mixture back into the remaining cream mixture. (This will increase the temperature of the egg yolks which is called tempering).
8. Season to taste with the salt and fresh cracked black pepper.
9. Refrigerate until needed.
11. Take the bottle of balsamic vinegar and pour it into a saucepan with about 1/2 cup of sugar. Heat, stirring constantly for about 20-25 minutes until the sauce reduces to about half and coats the spoon. Don't allow to boil as the sugar will burn. You'll know when it's the right consistency when you take a little dab (about the size of a pearl) and put it on a chilled plate, and it holds it's shape pretty well. Cool and store in a covered container.
13. Heat Alfredo sauce in large sauté pan.
14. Add onion, spinach and gorgonzola cheese.
15. Grill steak to desired doneness.
16. Cook pasta. Place drained pasta in sauté pan with heated alfredo sauce.
17. Toss pasta with sauce and place on a large platter.
18. Place grilled beef on pasta and sauce.
19. Drizzle with balsamic glaze.
20. Sprinkle remaining gorgonzola cheese and sun dried tomatoes.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Homemade Spaghetti Sauce

1 large can Hunts tomato puree
1 large can Hunts tomato sauce
1 Large can Hunts tomato paste
1 large can mushrooms, stems and pieces (optional)
7 cups water
2 medium/1 large onion, cut fine
4 large green peppers, cut fine
6 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon oregano leaves
1 tablespoon italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon onion salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons parmesan cheese (add after finished)
2-3 pounds of cooked hamburger, drained and rinsed

Add all ingredients and bring to a boil. Continue to simmer for 5-7 hours until thick, stirring occasionally. Add cooked hamburger and parmesan cheese. Warm and serve over spaghetti noodles.

*I use 2 small cans of tomato paste because I can't find a large one.
*I use 6 cups water instead of 7 because my pan is too small but it works just fine.
*This makes a lot of sauce so I freeze a bunch of it in gallon bags.

Chicken Fajitas w/ homemade fajita sauce

Chicken Fajitas
2 chicken breasts, cut in strips and browned
1 Large green pepper, cut in strips
1 Large sweet onion, cut finely

Brown chicken. Saute peppers and onion until soft. Add chicken and stir fry sauce. Warm and serve.

*I boiled chicken until cooked throughly and shredded it. This helps the chicken absorb the sauce and makes the fajitas juicy.
*I don't use a whole onion - just a few strips to add flavor.

Fajita Sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon corn starch

Add broth to separate pan then combine rest. Bring to a boil (will turn dark brown). Add to peppers, onion, and chicken. If it is too thick add a little water.

*The sauce is sweet and very yummy!!!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Avocado, Tomato and Mango Salsa


  • 1 mango - peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1 avocado - peeled, pitted, and diced
  • 4 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil


1. In a medium bowl, combine the mango, avocado, tomatoes, jalapeno, cilantro, and garlic. Stir in the salt, lime juice, red onion, and olive oil. To blend the flavors, refrigerate for about 30 minutes before serving.