Monday, June 30, 2008

Chicken Divan

This past week, I finally put my menu planning skills to work and planned a pretty well-thought out menu for the week (see below). So by building upon the meal from the day before, I decided to use Sunday's Mushroom Chicken to make my Chicken Divan. This was my first stab at making Chicken Divan and I must say that Ken and I are now in love! We both enjoyed this casserole sooooo much! It's very easy to make and is extremely tasty! You should give it a's how:

Chicken Divan
Recipe Courtesy of Paula Dean


2 (10-ounce) packages frozen broccoli, chopped
6 cups shredded chicken, cooked
2 (10 3/4-ounce) cans condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream
1 cup grated sharp Cheddar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon curry powder
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs
2 tablespoons butter, melted


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Remove the outer wrappers from the boxes of broccoli. Open 1 end of each box. Microwave on full power for 2 minutes, until thawed. Drain the broccoli and put into a casserole dish.

3. Add the shredded chicken.
4. In a medium bowl, combine the soup, mayonnaise, sour cream, Cheddar, lemon juice, curry powder, salt and pepper, to taste, and wine.

5. Whisk together to make a sauce.
6. Pour the sauce over the broccoli and chicken.
7. Mix well with a spatula.
8. Place the mixture into an 11 by 7-inch casserole dish or 2 (9-inch) square disposable aluminum foil pans that have been sprayed with vegetable oil cooking spray.

9. Pat down evenly and smooth with a spatula.
10. Combine the Parmesan, bread crumbs and butter and sprinkle over the top.
11. Bake for about 30 to 45 minutes.

Food for the Soul

There's nothing like a good Soul Food meal on a Sunday afternoon. So in honor of that tradition, I try to cook a Southern, "down home" type meal most Sunday's. This past Sunday (June 22nd), I decided to make Collard Greens, Mac and Cheese, Mushroom Chicken, and Cornbread. Here's how it turned out!

Collards, Mac and Cheese, Mushroom Chicken

Friday, June 27, 2008

South of the Border

The hubby and I played host this past weekend to his two sisters and our niece. So in honor of their visit, I wanted to make sure I prepared meals that I knew they'd all like. Thus, this yummy creation! My hubby makes a delish casserole similar to this, but I decided to change it up a bit and put a Southwestern spin on it. Here's how it turned out...

Southwestern Mac and Cheese


1 pound ground beef
1 (14 ounce) can stewed tomatoes (chopped)
1 (12 ounce) can whole kernel corn
1 teaspoon garlic salt
Seasoned salt and Pepper to taste

1 (16 ounce) package macaroni
1 (8 ounce) container sour cream
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese


1. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, brown hamburger. Drain fat.
2. Add tomatoes and corn and heat through.
3. Season with garlic salt, seasoned salt, and pepper.
4. Cook elbow macaroni in a large pot of boiling water until tender. Remove from heat and drain.
5. Top macaroni with meat mixture, grated cheddar, and a dollop of sour cream.

Bon Appétit!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Dinner Menu for the Week

Braised Collard Greens
Corn and Rice Casserole
Baked Mushroom Chicken

Chicken Divan
Green Salad


Garlic Parmesan Chicken
Green Salad
Garlic Bread

Leftovers or Date Night

Sloppy Joes

Pizza Casserole or Take Out Pizza

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sunday Dinner

Being a true bred Southerner, Sunday just doesn't feel like Sunday unless you have a yummy Soul Food meal. So in keeping in line with that tradition, I try to make a full, Southern-style meal over the weekend for Sunday dinner. This past Sunday, we had braised cabbage, smothered yellow squash, mac and cheese, and fried pork chops. Yummmmmy! =)

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Cool Summer Dessert

I'm not a huge dessert person at all. I normally leave that to my hubby. So, when I find a dessert I really like, that means it's a knock out. Well, I've found a knock out...Stawberry Shortcut Cake. It's moist and light and a perfect dessert for the Summer months. And as the name suggests, it's pretty easy and quick to prepare. Give it a try!

Strawberry Shortcut Cake


1 (18.25-ounce) box strawberry cake mix
3 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
2 tablespoons cognac
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (3-ounce) package strawberry flavored gelatin


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Follow cake directions as written on cake mix box.
3. Remove from oven and cool cake completely.
4. In a medium bowl, combine strawberries, cognac and sugar. Let strawberries macerate 20 minutes.
5. Mix gelatin as directed on box. Refrigerate gelatin mix but do not let it harden, it should cool to a liquid consistency.
6. Invert and release cake onto a decorative platter.
7. Using a straw, poke holes all over the cake.
8. Pour gelatin into holes and spread over the top of the cake.
9. Spread layer of macerated strawberries on top of cake.
10. Whip cream with confectioners' sugar and vanilla at medium-high speed until it reaches stiff peaks. Do not over whip.
11. Spread layer of whipped cream on top of the strawberries, making pretty swirls and ripples.
12. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.

Memorial Day Meal

We had a pretty low-key Memorial Day weekend. We didn't attend any cookouts nor did we host one of our own. However, my mother-in-law came up to visit, so I made a simple cookout inspired meal to celebrate the holiday. The menu included BBQ Pulled Chicken, Baked Beans, and Potato Salad. I prepared the chicken using my new slow cooker! The chicken was so moist and tender and the best part is I wasn't in the kitchen all day preparing it! My mother-in-law liked it, so I think my mission was accomplished. =)

Slow Cooked BBQ Chicken


3 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 can chicken broth
1 (12 ounce) bottle barbeque sauce


1. Place chicken in a slow cooker.
2. Pour chicken both over chicken.
3. Cook on High for 4 hours.
4. Drain broth from slow cooker and shred chicken.
6. Pour bbq sauce over shredded chicken.
7. Cover and cook another hour on High.

My New Love!

DH and I received a slow cooker as one of our wedding gifts. Well a couple weekends ago, I pulled it out and used it for the first time and let me just say, I'm in love! It's the best thing ever to be able to put all your ingredients in there, set the heat and time and forget about it! I made a delicious roast beef with potatoes and carrots. Here's how it turned out...

In addition to the roast and potatoes and carrots, I prepared some green beens and mac and cheese. It turned out to be a great combo of some comfort food favs.

Apple Dumplings

This is the BEST comfort food dessert ever! It is so sinfully good and super easy to make. If you like apple pie, this is the dessert for you!

Apple Dumplings
Recipe Courtesy of The Pioneer Woman


2 Granny Smith apples
2 cans crescent rolls
2 sticks butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoons vanilla
1 small can Mountain Dew


1. Peel and core apples. Cut apples into 8 slices each.
2. Roll each apple slice in a crescent roll.
3. Place in a 9 x 13 buttered pan.
4. Melt butter, then add sugar and barely stir.
5. Add vanilla, stir, and pour over apples.
6. Pour Mountain Dew around the edges of the pan.
7. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.
8. Serve with ice cream, and spoon some of the sweet sauces from the pan over the top.

And voilà!