Sunday, September 22, 2013

Mexi Stuffed Pasta Shells

I have to admit, I wasn't even going to put this recipe on my blog because it was a Pinspired recipe that has been going around for quite a while. The thing is, I see it on Pinterest, but never actually look at the recipe. I have no idea if it has the same ingredients as another recipe already posted. I try to keep it as original as possible.

Anyway, I made these on Thursday; it is now Sunday, and my husband is STILL raving about how good the shells were. I've had several people ask me for the recipe in a matter of days... so I figured I should go ahead and post it. To be extra sure, I did look at the stuffed shell recipes on Pinterest, and none of them seemed too much like mine (YAY!).


1lb lean ground beef
1 cup yellow corn (I always keep frozen corn in the house, but you could use a small can of corn or mexi-corn)
1 15oz can seasoned black beans (Goya, Glory, or Rosarita)
1 10oz can Rotel (hot or mild)
1 package low sodium taco seasoning
2 cups shredded colby & monterrey jack cheese
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1 28oz can enchilada sauce
1 12oz box Barilla jumbo pasta shells
sliced jalapenos (optional)


In a large pot, bring water (according to package) to boil. Add pasta shells and cook for 9 minutes. Drain in colander and set aside to cool.

In a large skillet, add hamburger meat, taco seasoning, corn, Rotel, and black beans. Cook until hamburger meat is browned, drain.

Preheat oven to 350.

In a 9x13" baking dish, fill each shell with about 2 spoonfuls of meat mixture. Pour enchilada sauce evenly over shells. Sprinkle chopped green onions on top, then add cheese. Add sliced jalapenos. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes until cheese is melted and slightly golden and sauce is bubbling.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Chile Relleno Casserole

So being from Texas, I love some good Mexican food, or Tex-Mex. LOVE IT. Well, the part of Georgia that I live in doesn't exactly have any amazing Mexican food to offer. It makes me so sad. Great for the diet, but not so great when you're craving something authentic. Well, I learned a trick or two and I can produce some pretty authentic tasting yummies.

With that being said, I have had a hankering something fierce for a good chile relleno. Well, when I was in the grocery store the other day, I decided to remedy this. Now, while I will usually go all out with my authentic dishes, I didn't so much feel like it this week. There's a lot going on, and I wanted flavor AND convenience. So my solution was a casserole. Of course it was... I'm surprised I didn't try to come up with something crock pot related (stay tuned, and I just might).

The result?

Oh my goodness. Oh. My. Goodness. OHMYGOODNESS. I felt like I was eating a chile relleno. The real thing. Straight from Texas and all. Now, this may be that I have been out of state for so long, but this may be my best casserole recipe yet.... even better than my Fiesta Casserole. Oh yes. Is it possible to have a mouthgasm? I think it happened.

So here's how to create this amazingness...


1tsp chipotle chile powder
1tsp cumin
6 eggs
1/4 cup masa flour
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 cups milk

4 poblano peppers, roasted and seeded
8oz canned diced green chiles (2, 4oz cans)
1 yellow onion, chopped
16oz queso fresco (fresh mozzarella) sliced into 1/2 inch, or so, pieces... or shredded mozzarella
16oz CHORIZO (all caps, muy importante! I used Ole brand, see pic)


Set oven to Broil, High. Roast poblano peppers on a piece of foil, about 3-4 minutes on each side until blistered. Turn broil off & set oven to 350 degrees.

Set aside.

Cut end off of chorizo casing and squeeze into medium sized skillet, repeat. Cook on medium-high heat for 5-7 minutes, mashing with fork to mix together until fat is cooked to a liquid. Take off heat and set aside.

Going back to your poblanos, take thumbs and rub off "blistered" pepper skin. Discard. cut the top off of each pepper and remove stem/seeds. slice each pepper into 4 pieces.

Grease 8x11" pyrex dish (or pam), and place in oven for a few minute while completing the net step:

In a medium sized bowl, add flour and masa flour (Maseca), chile pepper, and cumin. Slowly add milk, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. Mix in eggs. Take pyrex out of oven and pour in half of egg mixture. Layer poblano peppers, half of cheese, half of onion, and 4oz canned diced green chiles.

Layer in sausage using a large "colander spoon" to drain the fat, sprinkle over other half of onion, 4oz canned green chiles, and remaining cheese, layered somewhat evenly. Evenly pour in the remaining egg mixture.

Bake at 350 for 45-50 minutes.

Enjoy... immensely.

It's ok to drool a little :)

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Morning Power Shake

This has become my go-to breakfast. Not only is it easy, but it's tasty... And good for you. 

I know I post a lot (okay, a lot A LOT) of meals that aren't so healthy. Some that are... But they're definitely outweighed by the comfort foods loaded with calories. To be fair, most of my recipes posted here are those that I make on the weekends. I'm a firm believer that calories should not count on the weekends, but I do try to keep it healthy during the week. 

In an effort to even things out, I want to start posting about some healthy and easy meals. This may take me a bit because they're just not as fun to post, but I'll try. Why not start with breakfast?

I am not, I repeat, I AM NOT a morning person. I find that shakes are the easiest way to start my morning and get me going... And who wouldn't want to start their day with:

Chocolate Banana Peanut Butter Power Shake

Sounds amazing, right? It is. 

1 level scoop of Nutrilite Body Key meal replacement shake powder (or similar)
1 banana
1 tbsp PB2 or peanut butter
2 ice cubes
1/2 cup water

Mix all ingredients in blender until smooth, creamy consistency (like a shake should be of course!). For a thicker shake, use less water.

*low calorie
*vitamins & minerals

Monday, September 2, 2013

Easy Shredded Chicken Fajita Tacos

I have another slow cooker recipe for y'all! You'll love the zesty flavor and hint of kick with this recipe. Plus, it was super easy and delicious.


4 chicken breasts
1 10oz can Old El Paso enchilada sauce
4 packets Goya Sazon con Achiote
1tsp chile pepper powder
1tsp cayenne pepper powder

10 flour or corn tortillas
2 cups sliced fajita vegetables
2  sliced jalapenos
1 tbsp cilantro paste *optional*

2tbs margarine/butter
1/4 cup water


Put chicken breasts in crockpot and apply 1 packet of Goya seasoning (spread evenly) over each chicken breast. Sprinkle in chile pepper and cayenne, then pour in enchilada sauce. Cook on low 6 hours.

After chicken is cooked, put crockpot on warm. Drain half of juice/enchilada sauce into skillet & add vegetables and jalapenos (and cilantro paste). Cook on medium-high heat until onions are translucent and juice has boiled out.

Roughly shred chicken in crockpot with 2 forks. Keep on warm until done serving meat as it will continue to soak up the juices and spices left in the crockpot.

**Optional but recommended**
Preheat oven to 350. In a regular microwaveable bowl, heat butter and water for 30 seconds. Slightly mix. Dip each tortilla in butter/water mixture and place on a piece of foil roughly the size of the tortilla. Roll tortilla foil side out so that it isn't sticking to itself. Do this for as many tortillas as you like, up to 10 as there will be plenty of filling. Bake tortillas for about 7 minutes. This warms the tortilla and gives it an almost homemade taste without making it crispy.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Allergies, Sinus Problems, & Ear Infections, Oh My!

I'm deviating from my normal recipe posts as a public service announcement... Of sorts. 

Since moving to Georgia, I have had THE WORST problems with allergies. For whatever reason, medicines, either OTC or prescribed, have been no help. In a bout of frustration, I decided to switch to natural remedies. I have no clue why it took me so long to do so, but I am glad I did. 

To combat allergies, I incorporated raw, organic, local honey into my diet. There are many ways this can be done, but my favorite (other than right out of the jar) is to add a tablespoon of honey into my green tea every morning OR even better... I made a post a while ago about skinny water. I love that stuff. Love it to the point of can't live without it. Most people make their skinny water (spa water, detox water, etc.) with just water, lemons, cucumbers, mint and/or ginger, but I put 8oz (one bag brewed) of green tea in mine for the flavor and antioxidants. So of course I get the idea to brew my green tea with a tablespoon of local honey and add that to my skinny water. It tastes so good!! But that's not it.... I also brew green tea with a tablespoon of local honey, a teaspoon of organic cinnamon, and add it to the skinny water using apples instead of cucumbers and lemon. Oh my goodness, let that stuff sit for a day and it's like drinking your desert with amazing health benefits. 

The local honey really helped with the frequency and severity of my allergy issues, but I still have sinus flare ups. A friend of mine, who advocates natural remedies, gave me a product called Sinucheck. Oh wow. It changed my world. I can tell you that it will leave a slight eucalyptus taste in your mouth, but it isn't overpowering or unpleasant (to me anyway), and the results are incredible. Seriously, when nothing worked for me and I had sinus pain, sore throat, headache, loss of voice, drippy nose, cough... A plethora of irritating symptoms... Sinucheck came to the rescue. I will be forever grateful to my friend that recommended this product, and I sing its praises all the time. 

For a while, I had my allergies completely under control, then my husband and I traveled out of state on vacation. I made the mistake of not keeping up with my honey intake, and when we got back home, my allergies hit full force. I had a horrible ear infection in BOTH ears, and I was absolutely positively miserable. My personal Facebook friends can attest to this as I did nothing but complain for a solid month. At least. 

Why that long? Well... 1. I'm stubborn and think if I'm sick it should just go away out of shear force of will. I even believe that it will magically work that way. Every. Time. 2. Once I finally admit I'm sick beyond repair, I still do not like doctor visits. I'm not sure why... I just don't. 3. I can't really handle antibiotics because of my varying degree of allergic reactions to them. Plus... Antibiotics have an extensive list of side effects that are less than appealing and even harmful (like killing the good flora in your intestines). 

I did some research and tried a number of things... To include putting apple cider vinegar in my ear twice a day. Nothing seemed to do the trick, so I did even more research and found Wally's Ear Oil. After so many days of terrible ear pain, nausea and feeling beyond miserable, this was my last shot before giving in and going to the doctor. Amazingly enough, Wally's ear oil fixed my ears in 4 days. Had I known about this product sooner, I wouldn't have had to spend a month in ear pain annoying others with my complaining. Now I'm going to make sure I always have it available. 

I've also started taking "Hear All" to try to prevent any future problems and because... Well, I couldn't hear very well to begin with (a past of working on jets and genetics, I guess) and I don't need any other damage done to my ears. Supposedly Hear All will help with that. I guess only time will tell. 

Anyhoodle, I'm obviously not a doctor, so I can't say that these products are good for everyone, and I recommend doing your own research; however, they are natural and worked wonders for me. Hopefully they're able to help you if you have some of the same problems with allergies/sinuses/ear infections that I do! 

Monday, August 19, 2013

Ranch Pork Roast

The classic pot roast is one of the easiest & most delicious meals to make in a crock pot. There are many recipes out there; heck, I know I have several, but when I think of the classic comfort food, this is one of the recipes I turn to.

Now... I know there's a stigma attached to the cream of whatever soup... and I get that, I do. So consider this your warning: there is cream of whatever in this recipe. If you can look over that, I promise you're in for a super easy, mouthwatering meal.


1 Boston butt pork roast, bone in or out. The poundage is strictly left to preference, but I like to make sure to get one without a lot of fat. I also prefer bone-in.

1 pkg. Hidden Valley buttermilk ranch dressing dry mix
1 regular can (10 3/4oz) cream of mushroom soup
12oz beef broth
1 medium onion, sliced
4 cloves garlic, whole
6-8 red potatoes, halved


Place pork roast in crock pot and arrange all of your potatoes, onions, & garlic around it. Pour ranch powder over roast/potatoes. In a small bowl, mix soup and beef broth, pour over roast/potatoes. Cook on low for 8 hours.

Easy-peasy. Best made when you are out of the house for a bit as the delicious smell will have you salivating! Serve with your favorite veggie side-dish & some bread for sopping up that gravy!  

Texas Trash Dip

It has been ages since I have posted anything, but goodness gracious, it's like I just never have the time anymore... or maybe I just don't make the time. I need to change that! My husband kindly reminded me this weekend part of the reason for starting this blog in the first place: I don't remember my own recipes. This happens all the time; usually it will come to me, but when he was trying to describe something I cooked over a year ago, I just stared at him blankly. I guess when you throw stuff together on a whim, as I am oft to do, then don't  write it down... it goes into the recesses of the mind that harbor cobwebs and all sorts of other useless bits of info.

Anyhoo... I'm a Texas girl, born and raised, and though I don't long to return to my home state, I do miss the food. I've seen Texas Trash floating around Pinterest, and for such a simple creation, there are so many variations. I had no idea! I remember my mom making this dip for big football parties... back when the Cowboys were America's team and won Super Bowls.

Well, I may not be a Cowboys fan (Go Patriots!), but I am definitely a fan of football & football parties. It's that season again, and I couldn't be any more thrilled! So, in the spirit of football season and my husband's fantasy league draft, I made Texas trash. Since the entire contents of the dish were devoured, I'd say it was a hit.


1lb ground beef
2 16oz cans refried beans
8oz sour cream
8oz cream cheese
3 cups shredded cheese **I use pizza blend and sharp cheddar, but it's called Texas "trash" for a reason... use what you like. Colby jack, taco blend, mild cheddar, sharp cheddar.... whatever floats your boat!**
1 small can ( 7 3/4 oz) of El Pato tomato sauce **some people use Rotel. I don't like the texture of Rotel in the bean dip, so I find that the spicy tomato sauce usually found in the Hispanic food isle of the grocery store makes this dip SO much better than having chunks of tomato mess up the creaminess of the dip.**
1 package taco seasoning 
Sliced jalapenos and black olives to taste


Preheat oven to 350. Brown ground beef in skillet until cooked through, drain. In a large microwaveable bowl, combine cream cheese and beans... no need to mix just yet. Microwave for 1 minute; this will soften cream cheese and beans so that they are easy to mix. Stir until there are no lumps of cream cheese. Add in ground beef, sour cream, taco seasoning, and tomato sauce. Mix thoroughly. Pour out mixture into a 9x13" baking dish. Top with cheese and sliced jalapenos and olives. Bake for 25-30 minutes until cheese is melted. This is best served warm with tortilla chips and an ice cold beer on the side :). Enjoy!