Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Chicken Spinach Soup




I am back on the spinach wagon, again. I really like this recipe because it was simple and quick. I got the actual recipe from the cooking light magazine, so you can google it and get the exact stuff. Or you can go from mine, I tweaked it a bit to fit my family. Like larger the soup pot. I also took a picture of it for you, but alas it turned out kinda blurry. You can also google their recipe and see a beautiful picture of the soup. It is as good as it is pretty.

So let me get started. I liked this recipe, because I had everything I needed on my shelves, and freezer. Easy and quick.

Chicken Spinach Soup

Ingredients:

2 cans of chicken broth (3 cups)(you can use homemade or chicken boulion (just remember the boulion has salt)

2 cans of cream of chicken soup

1 small box of dried cheese tortellini (mine actually came in a box)

1 small 10 bag of frozen spinach (drain this and chop up)

2 chicken breasts (cooked) (or leftover chicken you have, shredded or cut into pieces)

2 cups of skim milk

A dash of salt and pepper

Directions:

I took the chicken broth first and started it to boil. My chicken was uncooked so I cooked it in the broth and removed it to cut it up. Then I dropped the tortellini in the boiling water, till just about tender. Then I added the rest, bringing it to a boil, and then cut heat low until the tortellini's were completely cooked. Turn off heat and let cool about 5 minutes. The taste of the soup is better if it cools a bit.

It really was so easy and so quick. The kids ate almost a whole soup pot full. I think next time I will add more tortellinis.

The little bit of what was left, was also wonderful. It thickened up and was great. I actually hid and ate it.

I hope this post finds all my friends and family. Well and happy. Till next time..

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spinach Pizza



***You know I gotta put a tempting picture, when I can.***

Spinach Pizza

Keeping away from temptation and making food at home instead of eating out or drive through, is getting a little bit easier. I actually used to try to do this for our health, but now it seems it is for my pocket these days. My husband, the kids, and I went through Wendy’s and the total was $26.00. Wow, I could have bought the same stuff and made dinner and then some.

As far as fast food goes, my bunch usually get tummy sick after those meals, so they were easy to do away with. Chinese takeout is a no go around here, because in the South it is too expensive. I make a mean Hot and Sour Soup, Egg Drop Soup, Egg Rolls, Chicken and Broccoli and Egg Foo Young.

so … BOOOOO YAHHHHHH!

Any of the other restaurants I usually can make whatever any likes in those. I can cook and replicate just about anything I like, or the family likes. I think that is what makes it a challenge to cook. I take a recipe, revamp it so it is can be easy for me to make and sometimes even very cheaply. All I know is that everything turns out delicious and that makes me happy. I always enjoy sharing with everyone too.

I am labeling this Spinach Pizza, because that is what I have made today to share with everyone.

I always keep a bag of frozen spinach and a container of ricotta cheese in my freezer. If it is pre-thought out I will pull it out and let it all thaw. If not, I have been known to thaw it out in the microwave. I also sometimes make extra of this to do other things with. It is a very versatile filling. If you don’t use it all at once, always remember to drain the liquids before using it. Sometimes sitting in the fridge it gets a little watery.

With this filling you can make pizza (see above) stuffed shells, manicotti, ravioli’s, lasagna, calzone’s, Greek Spanikota, and even the little appetizer, which are delicious. I am sure if you use your creativity you can think of other things.
I am going to break this down into two parts and how you want to use it, is your choice.


>>>If you are making pizza this is the part where I olive oil the pan, put down the crust and bake till slightly brown. It keeps the pizza from being soggy. Then I make the ingredients.

Spinach Filling

1 bag of frozen (thawed and drained spinach) I squeeze it until all the water is gone
1 container of regatta cheese (1 can make 2 pizzas)
½ cup mozzarella cheese
2 eggs
4 cloves of garlic (minced)
½ onion diced (small)
Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

Squeeze all water out of spinach, and mix in ricotta cheese, egg, garlic, onion, salt and pepper. Mix it all together well. This is now the filling or the pizza topping.

>>To make pizza:
Spread mixture out, thick or thin (should have enough to 2 thin ones)
Cover with a handful of mozzarella cheese
Place in oven until browned. 350 for about 15minutes

>>>>for the pasta dishes:

Stuffed Shells or Manicotti: Precook all your pasta. Pipe filling in, put a layer of sauce in bottom of pan you are putting in oven, cover with tomato sauce and a bit of cheese and bake, usually 350 for 30 minutes.

Spaghetti Pie: Leftover over spaghetti, pressed into a pan, like a pizza crust then put filling in the middle to the edges, and cover with sauce and cheese. Bake till a bit firm.

Lasagna: Precook lasagna noodles and layer filling in layers with the regatta cheese. You can keep this all white, but I find that it needs more moisture so I also layer the sauce in too and on top.

Raviolis: you can use the large or small wonton wrappers. Fill so there are no air bubbles and drop in boiling water. When floating, remove and sauce.

>>> For the other things:

Greek pie (Spanikota): Spread between layers of phyllo sheets and butter. Bake till brown. You need to watch this because phylo is a quick browning.

Appetizer: You can use the small phyllo cups, small wonton wrappers (placed in muffin tins and baked a bit first.) fill with mixture, top with cheese and bake until brown.

I just re-read what I have wrote and gosh, I think this one little spinach filling can really give you a big bang for the buck and for your appetite too.

If you try it and you like it, be sure to comment. I also have an email tab on my blog, so you can subscribe to reading me all the time.

Well got to get off of here, got to eat this pizza before they eat it all gone.
Enjoy your day and will write again soon.

Much love to all and as always, Enjoy The Moments!