10/14- Slow Cooker Steak Fajitas

Obviously, another Crock Pot one! It's a keeper, too. Even though you don't get the "just grilled" flavor of traditional fajitas, this comes really really close. It turns out pretty juicy, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Too moist is way better than too dry, right? The only issue I had with it was that the steak pretty much disintegrated upon serving, but in the end it really didn't matter because it tasted so good. I served it with shredded cheddar, sour cream, and guacamole. SO good! The kids devoured it! Sadly, I made this when we had a house full of out-of-town family, and didn't think to snap a picture. You should really try this one, though, it's worth it!

1 beef flank steak (about 1 pound)
1 medium onion, cut into strips
1/2 c medium salsa, plus additional for garnish
2 T chopped fresh cilantro
2T fresh lime juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp salt
1 small green bell pepper, cut into strips
1 small red bell pepper, cut into strips
flour tortillas

1. Cut flank steak lengthwise in half, then crosswise into thrin strips; place meat into Crock Pot slow cooker. Combine onion, 1.2 c salsa, cilantro, lime juice, garlic, chili powder, cumin and salt in Crock Pot slow cooker. Cover; cook on LOW 5 to 6 hours.
2. Add bell peppers. Cover; cook on LOW 1 hour.
3. Serve with flour tortillas and additional salsa, if desired.

10/24- Easy Corn Chowder

Another one from the Crock Pot cookbook, and it's a keeper! Again, it's super easy, and it's absolutely made for these cool Fall nights. It's awesome!

2 cans (14/5 ounces) chicken broth
1 bag (16 oz) frozen whole kernel corn, thawed
3 small red potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 rib celery, sliced
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/2 c heavy cream
8 slices bacon, crisp-cooked and crumbled

1. Place broth, corn, potatoes,  ell pepper, onion, celery, salt, black pepper, and coriander into Crock Pot slow cooker. Cover; cook on LOW 7 to 8 hours.
2. Partially mash soup mixture with potato masher to thicken. Stir in cream; cook on HIGH, uncovered, until hot. Adjust seasonings, if desired. To serve, sprinkle on bacon.

I thought mashing it with the potato masher sounded weird, but it really made a huge difference. It takes some time to get it to actually work, so keep on mashing until you start to notice a difference. This soup is seriously good. The kids weren't as crazy about it as Joe and I were, but that could be because of the pepper. The next chilly night you see coming, try this out. You won't regret it!

10/4- Chicken in Honey Sauce

I borrowed a Crock Pot cookbook from a friend, and found some really amazing ones in there. This was the first one I tried, and it did not disappoint! Being a Crock Pot recipe, it was really easy. I will say to be sure not to cook it too long. I put it in earlier than I should have because that was my only window of time to get it done, and it was a bit overcooked. All that really means is that the chicken completely fell apart and the color was extra dark, but it still tasted great. I served it with rice and peas. Delicious! More to come from this cookbook for sure.

6 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1.5 pounds)
2 cups honey
1 c soy sauce
1/2 c ketchup
1/4 c oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
Sesame seeds

1. Place chicken in crock pot slow cooker; season with salt and pepper.
2. Combine honey, soy sauce, ketchup, oil and garlic in medium bowl. Pour over chicken. Cover; cook on LOW 6 to 8 hours, or on HIGH 3 to 4 hours.
3. Garnish with sesame seeds before serving. Serve extra sauce on side, if desired

9/25-Summer Vegetable Stew with Basil Puree

This soup was seriously good; better than I expected it to be. The basil puree just makes it. Looking back now, I think I made some substitutions or slight changes, but I can't remember what they were anymore. I don't think they were anything super major, though, so go ahead and give the recipe a shot. You won't be disappointed!

9/23- Hot Chicken Salad

I got this recipe from a friend at Church; actually, it was given to me at mainly music (a kids' music program at our Church) as a Mother's Day gift. Anyway, we liked it so much when we had it that first time that I decided to make it again. Even though the name is "chicken salad", it's really not much like your traditional chicken salad. To us, it's more like a one-pot Thanksgiving meal. It's shredded chicken, herbed stuffing, lemon juice, mayo, and cheese all mixed up and baked. All it's missing is the gravy, which is a great way to moisten it up.  The lemon juice is the key in the recipe, it really brightens up the flavor.

2 c cooked, cut up chicken
1 c chopped celery (optional)
1 c shredded cheddar cheese
3 c Herb seasoned stuffing
3 T lemon juice
enough mayo to make it moist (about 1 cup)

Mix all together and put it in baking dish. Bake at 350* for 30-40 minutes, until heated through. Bake it covered if you want it moister. (for 13 x 9 pan, double recipe).

9/20- Chicken Philly Sandwiches

These were amazing. Just writing about them right now is making me hungry. Aside from the slicing and dicing time, they really didn't take too long. Having a grill pan made a huge difference in finishing them off, if you ask me. The grill marks on the bread were just perfect. These sandwiches were a huge hit with the whole family, kids included!