Saturday, February 21, 2009

Chicken Tamale Casserole from Cooking Light

1 cup (4 oz.) preshredded 4-cheese Mexican blend cheese, divided
1/3 cup fat-free milk
1/4 cup egg substitute
1 tsp ground cumin
1/8 tsp ground red pepper
1 (14 3/4 oz.) can cream-style corn
1 (8.5 oz.) box corn muffin mix
1 (4 oz.) can chopped green chiles, drained
Cooking spray
1 (10 oz.) can red enchilada sauce (such as Old El Paso)
2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Combine 1/4 cup cheese and next 7 ingredients (through chiles) in a large bowl, stirring just until moist. Pour mixture into a 13X9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.
3. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until set. Pierce entire surface liberally with a fork; pour enchilada sauce over top. Top with chicken; sprinkle with remaining 3/4 cup cheese. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until cheese melts. Remove from oven; let stand 5 minutes. Cut into 8 pieces; top each serving with 1 tbs sour cream. Yield: 8 servings.

Nutrition Information: 354 calories, 14.1g fat, 18.9g protein, 36.3g carb, 2.5g fiber

Melba's Note: We don't have any good Mexican restaurants in or near State College, so I'm always craving Mexican food, and I ESPECIALLY love tamales. This satisfies that craving and then some...
With Cooking Light recipes, I've found that I usually need to significantly increase (sometimes even double) the suggested cooking time. Has anyone else had that experience? I don't know if their ovens are just really hot (maybe they cook in a convection oven?) or if their food testers just like raw or undercooked food. Anyway, I cook the corn mixture for 20-25 minutes. The chicken part isn't such a big deal cuz you're just warming the whole thing and melting the cheese.

Monday, February 16, 2009


Hi All -
I know, I know. I need to post some recipes. I will, I promise. I just added the label feature to the blog to make it easier to find recipes. When I send people to the blog for a recipe, I realize they have to look through more than a year's worth of posts and it's probably kinda annoying. So... each recipe is labeled according to it's title, type of food (main dishes, soups and stews, sides, sweets, bread, or breakfasts), and either the cookbook I got it from or the person who gave it to me. Hopefully it will make the site more user-friendly.
I always joke that I get the most accomplished when I have a stack of papers to grade because I find really creative ways to put off grading. Well, I better quit now and go... yes... grade. :)

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Sammie's Steak Marinade

2/3 Cup Cranberry Juice
3 T Balsamic Vinegar
2 T Olive Oil
2 T Chopped Fresh Rosemary
2 Cloves Garlic diced
McCormick Montreal Steak Rub
2 Good-size Sirloin steaks

Combine the cranberry juice, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, rosemary and garlic in a Tupperware dish. Add the steaks to the dish – then flip the steaks so that both sides have been covered with marinade. The steaks do not need to be completely immersed in the marinade, but they should have garlic and rosemary sitting on top of them while they marinate. Let them sit in the fridge for at least 4 hours – flip the steaks about every 2 hours in the marinade.

Remove the dish from the fridge 30 minutes before cooking. Sprinkle some of the Montreal Steak rub on either side of the steaks as you put them on the grill. Continue pouring a small amount of the marinade on the steaks while they cook.

Note – I tend to be pretty generous with the garlic and rosemary. I also like to let steaks marinade overnight. If you do this, be sure to flip them right before you go to bed and in the morning when you get up.

Sammie's Note: I went to a local restaurant in September – The Allen Street Grill – and had the best steak I’ve ever had in my life. A month later, on the day I signed the offer from Dell, Melba and I went to this restaurant to celebrate and I ordered this steak again. I tried to get the recipe, but it should come as no surprise that they wouldn’t give it to me. All I know is that it is a ‘Sweet Vinaigrette’. I have been trying to duplicate it since then and this is a recipe from a Williams & Sonoma grilling cookbook which is pretty close. It’s a simple marinade which tastes awesome. W&S says it is for sirloin and while I have only used it for sirloin (don’t have the money for rib-eye), I think it will work well with any other type of steak.

Melba's Note: My Texas husband will be out on our deck, a foot of snow on the ground and more falling, grilling IN SANDALS!!!! It's wonderful.