Hi Everyone, remember me!? Sorry I have been MIA for the past few weeks! Between recovering from vacation (it is a hard life lounging on a tropical beach for a week ya know!), and a week long seminar I am finally home and cooking again. At the end of my seminar I spent some great time with my friend Alicia and we made Beans and Rice which were delicious and the inspiration for this meal. I did change things up, adding more veggies and using chorizo instead of ham but the basics are the same. This is a simple meal with tons of flavors, hearty and healthy – some of my favorite characteristics in a dish.
Mexican Beans & Rice: Serves 4
1 Box Goya Yellow Rice
2tsp Olive Oil
8oz Red Potato – Cubed into 1/4″ Cubes
1 Bell Pepper – Chopped
1 Onion – Chopped
1oz Chorizo – Chopped into small chunks
1/8-1/4tsp Cayenne Pepper
8oz Tomato Sauce
16oz Canned Pinto Beans – Drained & Rinsed
Salt & Pepper
First chop up all your veggies, put a teaspoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the potato, bell pepper, onion and chorizo and stir to coat. Add the cayenne pepper, cumin & coriander with some salt and pepper (light on the salt as the chorizo has lots of flavor). Cook for 8-10 minutes until the veggies soften up then add the beans, tomato sauce, salsa and water, give it a stir, bring up to a simmer and cook for 20-30 minutes stirring occasionally. The sauce will thicken as it cooks.
Once you set the veggies to simmer you can get started on the rice. Add 2C of water to a pot with the remaining teaspoon of olive oil, bring up to a boil then add the goya rice (it has seasonings in the rice packet to make it nice and tasty!), let it boil for a minute, then reduce the heat to a low simmer, cover and cook for approximately 25 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed into the rice. Fluff with a fork then split the rice into 4 bowls, top with the veggie mix, serve and enjoy!
WW: 10 Points Plus / serving
The other night I made Italian Spiced Chicken and served it with similarly spiced wild rice and Roasted Brussels Sprouts. I love making side dishes like this that really compliment the main dish and I can fix it and forget about it while it cooks.
Place the rice, water, olive oil and seasonings in a small sauce pot, bring up to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover with a lid and let it cook slowly until all of the water has been absorbed by the rice. Fluff with a fork, serve & enjoy!
WW: 4 Points Plus / serving
For the past few weeks I have been pretty busy, getting ready for vacation, being on vacation, recovering from vacation….it really is tiring! I didn’t have a lot of time to cook and was looking for quick meals. This chicken dish was a result of my having not thought ahead to marinate the chicken, I was really happy with the results and would eat this on its own, on a salad, or mixed into any stir fry.
Tip: To cook your chicken more evenly slice in half horizontally so it is a more even. It also helps speed up your dinner as the chicken cooks in 10-15 minutes!
Lay the chicken breasts out on a plate and lightly sprinkle all of the spices evenly over each side. Place on a greased cookie sheet and bake at 375° for 10-15 minutes (longer if you don’t slice your chicken in half)! until the chicken is cooked through. Remove from the oven and let it sit for 5 minutes to make sure the juices stay in the chicken! Serve & Enjoy!
WW: 3 Points Plus / serving
Tonight was one of those days that I was debating just ordering take out because I was being super lazy. I finally decided that being lazy was not a good reason to eat junk so I went to my fridge with the idea that I would make something healthy but not something that I really had to think about. I like to call recipes like this one a happy accident, the perfect ingredients were in the fridge and now I have an impressive dish to serve friends.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain and set to the side. While the pasta is cooking heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat, add the onions and garlic with some salt and pepper and cook for a minute or two. Add the cherry tomatoes, stir and cover with a lid and let cook for 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes easily pop open when light pressure is applied with the back of a spoon (be careful of squirting liquid!!!) Pop all of the tomatoes, add the oregano and basil and cook for 2-3 minutes with the lid off and the sauce simmering rapidly.
Add the wine – I do this away from the stove to ensure that the alcohol does not catch fire. Stir and bring the sauce back up to a rapid simmer, allow the sauce to reduce for another 5-6 minutes stirring occasionally. Now add the shrimp and butter and stir into the sauce, bring back up to a simmer and cook for another 4-5 minutes until the shrimp is completely cooked through. Remove from the heat and add the cooked pasta. Stir to evenly coat the pasta, cover with a lid and let the sauce soak into the pasta for another 4-5 minutes. Stir once more, serve and enjoy!
WW: 10 Points Plus / serving
Dear Sister….this recipe is for you. She told me I needed more potato recipes because she didn’t want to eat any of the ones I already had again. So I just started to make stuff up and what came out is pretty good! This is a good side dish for any meal but does take some time! I particularly liked it because it warmed my cold apartment up.
Twice Roasted Cheesy Potatoes: Serves 4-8
1.5lbs Red Potatoes (small ones!)
1C Cottage Cheese – Low Fat (I used Daisy Brand)
2oz Shredded Cheddar
1tsp Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper
At my grocery store they sell bags of small red potatoes that are about 2″ around and all the same size, I like using these because the potatoes will cook at the same rate. First scrub your potatoes – leave the skins on! Dry them, toss with the olive oil, salt and pepper and place on a greased cookie sheet. Place in a 450° oven for approximately 30 minutes until the potatoes are easily pierced with a fork – note cooking time can vary depending on the size of your potatoes.
Once they are cooked through add to a stand mixer and on low gently beat until the potatoes are all broken up. Add the remaining ingredients, taste test to see if you need some more salt and pepper, mix again until nicely incorporated. Scoop into a greased casserole dish, rake with a fork to make ridges and put back in the oven for an additional 30 minutes until the top is nice and golden. Serve and Enjoy!
WW: 7 Points Plus / serving @ 4 servings
5 Points Plus / serving @ 6 servings
3 Points Plus / serving @ 8 servings
Welcome to my kitchen!
I am a 29 yr old who loves to cook! I do not cook for a living, in fact I'm a project manager at an Architecture Firm in Baltimore, MD. I find that cooking is one of the best ways for me to decompress after a long day. I get to take time for me, make something nice, and sometimes share it with those that matter in my life. I love to cook with others and learn new things, while also teaching my recipes to my friends and family.
Two years ago I wrote a cookbook of family and friend favorites and I find I am still finding new recipes to explore and share and thought this would be the best way to do it.
I will be sharing the things I make weekly, great recipe websites, and other recipes I can't wait to try. I hope you find something useful here and encourage you to post any thoughts and comments as well as modifications to the recipes if you give them a try!