Cajun Alfredo Skillet

This has combo protein in it.  And Cajun seasoning.  And bell pepper and onion.  Feel free to double the spice as the quantities here are for people not accustomed to the Cajun blend. It’s like chili powder though, in that some have more heat than others.  If you want extra heat, add some red hot sauce that comes in the bottle with the tiny neck, sold under various names (not sriracha, that’s Asian).

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Cajun Alfredo Skillet

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Ingredients
  • 1 large or 2 small chicken breasts, diced
  • 1 Tbsp Cajun seasoning, divided (I use Slap Ya Mama)
  • 1/4 c + 2 Tbsp milk
  • 2 tsp canola or other unflavored cooking oil
  • 1 ea red and green bell pepper, cut in half strips
  • 1 onion , sliced in half-rings
  • 1/2 lb smoked sausage, cut in half-moons
  • 3 c cooked brown rice
Method
  1. Toss chicken with 1 tsp Cajun seasoning.
  2. In bowl, mix cream cheese with 2 Tbsp milk
  3. Heat oil in mondo skillet on medium.
  4. Add chicken and veggies. Cook, stirring frequently, until chicken is done, 6-7 minutes.
  5. Add sausage, cook 3 minutes, stirring frequently.
  6. Add cream cheese mixture, 1/4 c milk and 2 tsp Cajun seasoning.
  7. Cook until heated through.
  8. Stir in rice.

Reuben Salad

If you ever cook corned beef for another recipe, cook extra for this.  If not, then a slice from the deli on #8 will do you in most cases.  Home cooked is so much better, though.

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Reuben Salad

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Ingredients
  • 2 10-12 oz bags romaine salad mix
  • 1 c croutons
  • 1 lb corned beef, chopped
  • 8 oz Swiss cheese, cubed
  • 1/3 c sauerkraut rinsed and drained
  • Thousand Island dressing to taste
Method
  1. Combine everything but dressing in large bowl
  2. Toss with dressing.

Cornmeal and Pecan Crusted Catfish

“Eric’s mom” gave me this recipe, too.  Eric was my eldest son’s friend and our neighbor for a couple of years many years ago when we were in an apartment complex.  His mother was a state-fair prize-winning cook in her younger days and I used to remember her name but we lost touch and it’s been too many years. Anyway, I grew up on the Dakota prairie and hadn’t cooked catfish till I moved to southeast Texas.  This is tasty, and not too fussy of a recipe.

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Cornmeal and Pecan Crusted Catfish

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Ingredients
  • 4 catfish fillets (about 1.5 lbs)
  • 6 Tbsp cornmeal
  • 1/4 c AP flour
  • 2 Tbsp chopped pecans
  • 1.5 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 1 tsp canola oil
  • cooking spray
  • lemon wedges (for serving)
Method
  1. Combine cornmeal, flour, pecans, salt, garlic powder and paprika mix well.
  2. Divide into two pie plates
  3. Combine egg and water and put in another pie plate.
  4. Dredge each piece of catfish in one plate, then in egg mixture then the other plate.
  5. Spray skillet with cooking spray, then heat canola oil over medium heat.
  6. When hot, add fillets. Cook 4 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily.
  7. Serve with lemon wedges.

Tejano Chili Lime Roasted Chicken

I usually make this with boneless breasts.  I tend to make this in quantity (more than three pounds will comfortably fit in a jumbo bag) and use it as a meal base for snacky summer bowls (with roasted veggies, rice/quinoa and dressed with salsa and/or ranch).  When I say “Mexican beer” I usually use Dos Equis but you can use whatever your fave is.  Domestic brews work, too, but there’s a mystique at play here.  Also, beer salt is probably available wherever you can buy the Mexican beer.  THe idea is, you get the lime flavor without the liquid from the juice or the hassle of zesting the limes.

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Tejano Chili Lime Roasted Chicken

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Nutrition per portion

Ingredients
  • 2 c. water
  • 1/4 c. kosher salt
  • 1/4 c. dark brown sugar
  • 2 bottles Mexican beer
  • 1 chicken cut up, or 2-3 lbs chicken pieces, bone in or boneless
  • 1 Tbsp EVOO
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • lime beer salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • lime wedges for serving
Method
  1. Place jumbo zipper bag in large bowl.
  2. Combine water, salt, and brown sugar.
  3. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Add beer.
  4. Add chicken. Seal bag and refrigerate several hours or overnight.
  5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  6. Remove chicken from brine and rinse under cold water.
  7. Pat dry with paper towels.
  8. Place chicken on sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil and turn to coat. Rub with chili powder, beer salt, and pepper.
  9. Roast chicken until cooked through, at least 170 on a thermometer.  Time varies from about 15 minutes for boneless thighs to about an hour for bone-in leg quarters.
  10. Serve with lime wedges.

Cheesesteak-Stuffed Peppers

I don’t know about you, but I see a lot of recipes from Tasty on my Facebook feed.  They are little how-to-make-this-amazing-food videos and usually, they have one feature or another that makes them look a little too imposing.  Maybe they make too little or too much or they use an ingredient my kids won’t eat or are allergic to or … Whatever the issue, Cheesesteak-Stuffed Peppers is the first of theirs I’m going to try. This actually makes exactly twice what I need but I figure the leftovers will make lunches.