Smoky Baked Goulash

(Becky, the Mama.)

The other night was crazy.

I performed my usual bedtime routines: bath, then walked through the kitchen on the way to the bedroom, put lotion on my feet and legs and got in bed.

Suddenly my feet were on FIRE! Could not imagine why, but I rushed to get a wet cloth and washed them off.  Thankfully, the pain subsided, so I padded back through the kitchen, applied  more lotion, back in bed. Feet on fire!

I trekked back to the  kitchen where I saw that while making the recipe, I somehow spilled Tony’s Cajun Seasoning all over the kitchen floor. So basically, I was putting salt and cayenne pepper on my feet, then rubbing it in with lotion.

I hate it with this happens, don’t you?

So enjoy this recipe for Smoky Baked Goulash, as it is delicious and easy and great for a crowd.  (When your family is tired of turkey, this is a great make-ahead dish to stick in the oven and serve with a simple salad.)   Just make sure to let it melt in your mouth, and not on your feet.

Smoky Baked Goulash

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Serves six to eight people

Ingredients:

1 lb ground beef

1/2  lb  sweet Italian turkey sausage

(*Vegans: In place of beef and sausage, use a mixture of crumbled vegan sausage– Field Roast Apple Sage brand recommended; lentils or beans; and chopped Portobello mushrooms to equal about  2 ½ cups)

3 cloves garlic, minced or grated

1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes

½ c. BBQ sauce (I like Sweet Baby Ray’s brand)

1 t. cumin

1 t. smoked paprika

1 t. Hungarian paprika

½ t. Tony’s Cajun seasoning

Salt & Pepper to Taste

8 oz  Penne Noodles (I used a high fiber Barilla Plus brand)

½ c to 1 c. cheddar cheese

1 red onion, diced

1 chopped sweet red or yellow pepper (or mixture)

½ cup Lite Ranch Dressing

¼ cup sliced olives, green or black

Directions:

Cook noodles according to package directions.  While they are cooking, brown the hamburger and crumbled turkey sausage in a large skillet  (Vegans, use a little olive oil and sauté the mushrooms and vegan sausage, then add beans or lentils.)

Add can of crushed tomatoes, bar-b-que sauce and seasonings to browned meat in skillet  Add salt and pepper to taste.

In a separate pan sauté onions and pepper in olive oil. (To save time, you can do this when you brown the meat.  But it is prettier to see that layer of color on top of the casserole.)

When noodles are done, lightly oil a large rectangle casserole pan, and place noodles in it, in an even layer.   Gently spoon the meat sauce over the noodles.

Next, spoon sautéed onions and peppers over the sauce.  Then sprinkle cheddar cheese over all, as much as you like.  (We go light on the cheese, but if you love it, go for it! Vegans, omit cheese or use a vegan cheese product.)

Then pour pretty “squiggles” of Ranch Dressing over cheese layer. (Vegans use Vegan Ranch Dressing or make Rachel’s awesome recipe!)

Finally top with olives.

Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or until melts and dish is hot all the way through.

Variations: This is a great recipe for using left-over veggies: corn, diced carrots, mushrooms,  diced squash, beans — it is all good.

This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook
The site URL: http://welaughwecrywecook.com
The Title: Smoky Baked Goulash
The URL: http://wp.me/p1UwM9-MW
This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook

Advertisements

Balsamic Blistery Potato Chips

I do believe that if my husband Greg were to choose foods that make up his “dream meal,” it would no doubt have Kettle potato chips on the plate.  I’m just not sure if they would be a side dish, or the main attraction.   I dare not leave him alone in the house with a bag of thick cut potato chips because he cannot stop until he’s eaten them all, and by this I mean turned the bag upside down, shaking any remains of potato and salt into his mouth. He loves them too much to have them readily available,  except for very special occasions.               

“When did you start loving potato chips so much?” I asked him.

He grinned and said, “When I was a kid, I’d ride my bike home from school and of course I’d be starving. Then I’d plop in front of the TV with a bag of potato chips and eat the whole bag while I watched three episodes of Star Trek in a row.”  He sighed,then added. “It was heaven.  My favorite ones were Bar-B-Q and I’d lick all the goody off the sides before eating them.  It was before my parents divorced, and I just remember it as a simple, happy time.”

My husband just gave a perfect example of “taste memory” – when something you eat triggers warm happy memories.   I was inspired to create some potato chips that Greg could savor and enjoy, that would give him those warm fuzzy “taste memories,” but would do his body more good than harm.  Last week I tried an experiment that turned out amazingly well.  Rather than baking sliced potato rounds, I broiled them on both sides until “blistery.” In a word:  fabulous.  They are a great cross between an oven fry and a chip.  Greg loves them!

The following recipe is just one version of my Blistery Potato Chips, made with a balsamic-pomegranate vinegar, but you can create 50 Shades of (Homemade) Lays (Potato Chips) with a little imagination, a couple of sliced potatoes, some olive oil and great variety of herbs or spices.  Let your imagination go wild.

Try them as a healthy snack for you or the kids, or a quick, easy, delicious side dish with any meal. We especially love them with Chili Lime Catfish and coleslaw. 

What are some foods that bring warm happy memories to your mind?

Blistery Balsamic Potato Chips

Heat Oven to Broil.

Serves 2-4 people (depending on size of potatoes and appetites)

Ingredients:

2 Idaho potatoes, washed but not peeled, sliced thin (about ¼ inch)

¼ cup olive oil

2 T. balsamic vinegar (I used pomegranate balsamic)

Sea Salt (fresh ground if you have it on hand)

1 T. chopped green onions or chives (optional)

¼ c. catsup, BBQ sauce,  or Ranch dressing for dipping (optional)

Directions:

Place sliced potatoes in a shallow bowl and sprinkle with vinegar. Using clean hands, toss them around until they begin to soak up some of the vinegar.  Add in the oil and do the same. 

Lay “chips” on a big cookie sheet, spread apart and not touching each other.  

Lightly sprinkle them with sea salt.  Broil about 4 inches from broiler on one side for 3 minutes or so,  or until golden brown in spots.  Remove try from oven and turn over all the chips, sprinkle this side with more salt and put back under the broiler until the tops are golden brown.  Remove from oven.  The bottom side of the potatoes will have by now “blistered” and turned an even prettier shade of brown.   Taste one as soon as they are cool to see if more salt may be needed.  Garnish with chopped green onions or chives if you like.  Serve with a side of Ranch Dressing, BBQ sauce or catsup if desired. 

 

 

This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook

The site URL: http://welaughwecrywecook.com

The Title: Balsamic Blistery Broiled Potato Chips

The URL: http://wp.me/p1UwM9-DQ

© Copyright 2012 – All Rights Reserved

   


Vegan Ranch Dressing

Vegan Ranch Dressing, great as a dip or on a salad.

(Rachel)

This weekend I cleaned out my refrigerator door and overflowed the trash can with expired bottled salad dressings and corn syrup-filled marinades. It dawned on me that I haven’t eaten bottled dressing in years. Once you start making your own fresh dressing, it’s hard to go back.

Usually I make a simple vinaigrette or something like my mom’s Lemon Drop Dressing, but sometimes Jared and I crave the creamy classic, Ranch Dressing.

When Jackson was just a few weeks old, Jared got a hankering for a salad with ranch dressing, but I was nursing the baby and couldn’t get up to help him. So from the rocking chair in the living room, I walked him through the steps of washing, drying and chopping the parsley, mixing it with vegan mayo, salt, pepper, minced onions, and garlic powder, and thinning it out with a little unsweetened milk.

Unsure if he got the seasoning right, he brought the bowl to me so I could taste it. Just as he stepped onto the carpet, our cat Marvin, jetted in front of him, tripping Jared and sending the bowl into the air. Like a scene out of a Steve Martin comedy, the bowl came down landing right on the cat. In a panic, Marvin took off, shaking frantically throughout the living room sending ranch flying in every direction, coating us, baby included, the furniture, the walls, and the carpet.

The house (and the cat) smelled of onion and parsley for days.

If you can chop parsley and dodge schizo cats, you can make this dressing. It’s a great base for other creative combinations, too, like Avocado Goddess Dressing or Roasted Pepper Ranch. You can use dried parsley in this recipe too, but the fresh parsley really pops.

Easy, fresh, and so much better than bottled ranch dressing.

Rachel’s Vegan Ranch Dressing

Makes 1 cup of dressing

Ingredients

1 c. vegan mayo (We like the Grapeseed Oil Vegenaise)
1/8 c. flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 t. dried minced onion
1/2 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. salt
1 t. freshed cracked pepper
2 T. unsweetened non-dairy milk (add a little more for a thinner consistency or less for a thicker dip)

Directions

Combine ingredients and store in an air tight container in the refrigerator. Let sit for a couple of hours before using if possible. It should keep for about three days.

This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook
The site URL: http://welaughwecrywecook.com
The Title: Vegan Ranch Dressing
The URL: https://welaughwecrywecook.com/2012/05/24/vegan-ranch-dressing/
© Copyright 2012 – All Rights Reserved