Hearty Soups and Stew Recipes


Rezich Family Kitchen

Can you tell we’re anxiously waiting for spring and summer?  Like most of the country our temperatures in Michigan are unbelievable cold.  At 3:00 p.m. in the afternoon, with the sun shinning we are at -2 degrees F.

Snow Storm January 2014

Great day for staying indoors and making a hearty soup or chili that will warm you from the inside out.  Today we’d like to share with you the link to our Chili, Soup and Stew Recipe page.

Visit our Chili, Soup and Stews Page at Rezich Family Kitchen

https://rezichfamilykitchen.wordpress.com/chili-soups-and-stew-recipes/

 

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Cocoa Chili

Loaded Chicken And Potatoes

Today I have a special treat, a recipe from my daughter Nikki.  Nikki is a wonderful cook, like her momma she isn’t afraid to try new things or to deviate from a recipe to make it her own.  If Nikki is afraid of anything it’s the thought of me turning the blog over to her, just can’t seem to get Nikki comfortable with writing about her cooking adventures.  I’m working on it though.

We’re pretty proud of our girl.  She is going through some life changes lately some are good, a few are bad, others are sad.  But Nikki is a strong girl with a good head on her shoulders, there is no doubt she is going to come out on top of all of this.

Recently Nikki quit her job of eight plus years because of the hours and the time it was taking her away from her little man Eric who started Kindergarten this past September.  As scary as that decision was it turned out to be the right one.  Nikki immediately landed a great job with endless possibilities; a great place for her to settle into a career and not just a job.  Best of all she can take Eric to school in the morning and she is home at night with her little man.  Eric loves it and so does Nikki!   It also means that I get to spend a couple hours a day, a few days a week with Eric before Nikki comes home.  It’s a win, win, win for all three of us!

Eric and Nikki have been putting their time together to good use.  They do homework, read books, play outside, go for walks and play on ABC Mouse.  They have been cooking up a storm too!!  It’s fun watching them together, Nikki will actually ask Eric what they should make for dinner, he gives his opinion.  A family meeting resulting in a joint decision, a mutual agreement.  Needless to say I am hoping that all this cooking and experimenting over there is going to be great for our blog!

Yesterday when Nikki shared this recipe on her Facebook page and posted that she was making it for dinner last night I knew I had to get her to let me blog about it.  I had no doubt that I wouldn’t get Nikki to write the blog so we agreed that she would whip up the dish and let me know how it turned out so I could blog about it.

When Nikki took it out of the oven she sent me a picture via text and her message read; “Smells and looks fantastic!”  After she taste tested it she sent me another text; “OMG!!  Cajun instead of paprika one “hell of a kick!!”  It’s awesome!!  No doubt Nikki is my daughter, she used Cajun instead of the paprika the recipe calls for.  Not only did she make a spice switch she made sure it was spicy too!!

This dish is easy to make and can be put together pretty quickly.  Perfect for a fall evening at home while spending time with those you love.  Give it a try!

Thanks Nikki!!  Can I put my request in now for one new recipe a week?  Next I have to work on my momma, she has some great recipes I’d like to share, I just need to get Mom a digital camera for photo’s!!

Have a great Thursday everyone!!

Loaded Chicken and Potatoes

LOADED CHICKEN AND POTATOES

Ingredients:

1 lb boneless chicken breasts, cubed (1″)

6-8 medium skin on red potatoes, cut in 1/2″ cubes

1/3 c olive oil

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

1 Tbsp paprika (Nikki substituted Cajun Seasoning)

2 Tbsp garlic powder

2 Tbsp hot sauce (more if you like it HOT)

Topping:

2 c fiesta blend cheese

1 c crumbled bacon

1 c diced green onion (Nikki omitted the onion)

Directions:

  • Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Spray a 9X13″ baking dish with cooking spray
  • In a large bowl, mix together the olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika (cajun seasoning), garlic powder, and hot sauce
  • Add the cubed potatoes and chicken and stir to coat
  • Carefully scoop the potatoes and chicken into the prepared baking dish
  • Bake the potatoes and chicken for 55-60 minutes, stirring every 20 minutes, until cooked through, crispy, and browned on the outside
  • While the potatoes are cooking, fry your bacon (about half a pound)
  • Once the potatoes and chicken are fully cooked, remove from the oven
  • Top the cooked potatoes with the cheese, bacon, and green onion
  • Return the casserole to the oven and bake for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted

Serve with any of the following:

  • Extra hot sauce
  • Ranch Dressing
  • Sour Cream

Source:  N. Kiester (Source: SuperMoms Raising Healthy Kids – Kristen Washington)

Crock Pot Buffalo Chicken Pasta

There is no denying that I have been on a mission, for several years now, to find the perfect recipe that comes even remotely close to Red Robin’s Sante Fe Chicken Pasta, which unfortunately they replaced it with Southwest Chicken Pasta and there is absolutely no comparison between the two, I’d rather have the original Sante Fe Chicken Pasta.

Sante Fe Chicken Pasta had a great kick to it, a creamy alfredo sauce with chipolte peppers, sweet red and green peppers. slivers of sautéed red onion served over a bed of penne pasta and grilled chicken breast on top – YUMMY!  Over the years I’ve tried several “Sante Fe” type recipes and they just don’t come close enough for me so, I keep trying.

When I found this recipe, Crock Pot Buffalo Chicken Pasta, on Pinterest through allthecooks.com; http://www.allthecooks.com/crockpot-buffalo-chicken-pasta.html.  I did make just a few minor additions, I added sliced red, green and yellow peppers (half of each one) along with a small red onion slivered.  I tossed it in about an hour before dinner was scheduled to be ready.

I knew this wasn’t going to taste like the Sante Fe Chicken Pasta I was craving but it sure did look delicious and I was hoping that the buffalo wing hot sauce would give it enough of a kick for me.  I’m happy to say this recipe was quite delicious and easy to make.  Go ahead, give it a try.

Crock Pot Buffallo Chicken Pasta

CROCK POT BUFFALO CHICKEN PASTA

What You’ll Need:

1 pound ·  Chicken breasts, bite-sized pieces

1 can · Cream of chicken soup

½ cup · Hot sauce, like for buffalo wings

1 ½ cup · Shredded mozzarella cheese

½ cup · Crumbled blue cheese

Sliced red, green and yellow peppers

Sliced red onion – thin

3 cup · Uncooked penne pasta

1 ½ cup · Sour cream

Directions:

  • Season chicken with salt and pepper and put in crock pot
  • Add soup and hot sauce and stir
  • Cook on low 4-6 hours or high 2-3 hours
  • About an hour before adding the cheeses and sour cream add your onion and peppers
  • Stir in cheeses and sour cream
  • Turn off crock pot
  • Cook pasta according to package directions – Drain.
  • Add to crock pot
  • Stir well and serve

Source:   allthecooks.com; http://www.allthecooks.com/crockpot-buffalo-chicken-pasta.html

Quick And Easy Nacho Chicken

Do you like cooking at home, creating tasty dishes and desserts for your family?  Or do you prefer the convenience of eating out or maybe picking up a quick take out?  Where does your preference lie?  10 years ago I would have readily told you that I preferred to eat out.  Quick, easy, variety, relaxing.  No planning, no shopping, no prep and no clean up.  How could I not be drawn to that?

That preference lasted until 2007 when our kitchen went through a major remodel.  I wanted walls torn down which resulted in the new joists added to the exiting ones in the attic and the floors torn out all the way down to the floor beams.  For two and half months our kitchen was blocked off by sheets of plastic resulting in Walt and I eating out each and every day, including lunches.

The first few weeks it was an adventure.   It wasn’t like we weren’t creative about the process.  Walt and I wrote the names of about twenty restaurants on little strips of paper and placed them in a box.  We included all types of cuisine and each morning one of us would pick one out and that’s were we would have dinner.

Once through the twenty or so names in the box we became less enchanted with our adventure.  By the two month mark even Joshua who was four years old at the time and was with during the weekends said “Grandma, I’m tired of eating out, when can we eat at home?”  Joshua missed his “Grandma’s Sunday Big Breakfast.”

But it didn’t last forever and once the plastic was torn down and we had access to our pretty new kitchen filled with beautiful new cabinets and counter tops, new top of the line appliances were in place and a lot more counter space than I had previously had before.  It didn’t take long before for the chopping, blending, mixing, baking, frying and simmering began.

Today we do eat out, at least once a week sometimes twice a week.  But, if the truth be told, we really do prefer our own home cooked meals that’s why we’re always looking through cookbooks, reading blogs and surfing recipe sites looking for new ideas.  It’s also why we’re not afraid to throw together, things we like with things we want to try just to see where our little experiment takes us.

That’s how Easy Nacho Chicken came to be.  A few weeks ago I had defrosted chicken breasts thinking that I would throw them on the grill when I came home from work but the temperature that day reached into the mid 90’s, heavy humidity hanging in the air.  The thought of standing over a grill in the heat and humidity just wasn’t appealing.  Something quickly thrown together in my nice air conditioned kitchen was much more appealing.

Going through the cupboards, I found two cans of Campbell’s Fiesta Nacho Cheese Soup and of course rice (I always have rice).  Going through the refrigerator I found green onions just begging to be used and sour cream.  Since I already knew the Fiesta Nacho Cheese soup had a nice little kick to it and that I wouldn’t have to add any spices I had absolutely no doubt that I could put together a tasty dish without much effort and it would be ready in a matter of minutes.

So, if you’re looking for a dish with few ingredients and with just a little bit of a kick try this one.  It won’t disappoint.

Nacho Skillet Chicken

EASY NACHO CHICKEN

What You’ll Need:

1.5 lbs boneless/skinless chicken breast cut into cubes

2 cans Campbell’s Fiesta Nacho Cheese Soup

1 soup can of water (more or less to desired thickness/thinness of sauce)

3 green onions cleaned and chopped

Sour Cream

Cooked white rice (I usually make 1.5 cups dry to 3 cups water)

Directions:

  • In a large skillet, brown chicken breasts in oil – drain grease
  • Return chicken to pan – add both cans of soup
  • Add 1 can of water
  • Stir to mix
  • Cook about 30 minutes until chicken is cooked through
  • Pour over white rice
  • Garnish with green onions and sour cream

A Burst Of Color On My Plate

Nancy's Colorful Salad

NANCYS GRILLED CHICKEN SALAD

What You’ll Need:

Mixed Italian Salad Greens (*See Note)

2 – Grilled Boneless Chicken Breasts – Sliced

2 – Hard boiled eggs sliced

1 – Yellow Golden Delicious Apple – (peel, seed, chop – divide)

12 – Strawberries (Wash, core, quarter – divide)

6 – Slices Bacon – (fried, chopped into pieces)

1 – Container Crumbled Feta Cheese

Ken’s Raspberry vinaigrette dressing

Assemble all ingredients (evenly divided) into two individual salad bowls/dishes and serve with the Raspberry vinaigrette and enjoy!

NOTE:  Our fruit and veggie market sells a variety of all ready cleaned and chopped lettuce selection choices in plastic containers for about $4.99.  Although much more expensive than a head of lettuce or a stalk of romaine, for us it’s well worth the cost of having it already cleaned and chopped as well as the option of picking up mixtures that we otherwise might not want to take the time to make during a hectic work week.  The other plus, it’s enough greens to make multiple salads during the week for us.

Cracker Cheddar Chicken

A gorgeous Tuesday here in Michigan, picture perfect, I wish we could have 365 days a year like today.  It always amazes me how quickly things go from a dreary grey/brown to bright lush green, how it seems that the bare trees pop their leaves overnight and the flowers secretly break through the ground.  Everything is fresh and new….a taste of summer which is on its way.

I have another tasty chicken recipe for you today, Cracker Chicken.  I know, there are tons of recipes out there for chicken using Ritz crackers and all of them tasty.  I do something just a little different, instead of dredging the chicken through egg or milk I spread Miracle Whip over the chicken breasts before I roll them in the cracker/cheese mixture.  Miracle Whip you ask….yes, the Miracle Whip will help keep the chicken moist.

This recipe has only 5 ingredients, ingredients that most people have on hand.  Plus it is so easy to put together your family will think you spent some serious time in the kitchen creating it.  You can serve it as is or make a quick chicken gravy to go with it.  It pairs well with mashed potatoes, scalloped potatoes or even ranch potato salad and corn on the cob!!  Try this, I bet it’ll be a hit at your house too!

CRACKER CHICKEN

Cracker Chicken

What You’ll Need:

4 – Boneless/Skin-less Chicken Breasts

1/4 Cup Miracle Whip

24 Ritz Crackers – crushed fine

6-8 oz. Shredded Cheddar Cheese

Lawry’s Seasoning

Directions:

  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
  • Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil – spray with cooking spray
  • In a bowl mix crushed crackers with shredded cheddar cheese
  • Spread Miracle Whip on chicken breasts
  • Season with Lawry Seasoning Salt
  • Roll chicken breasts in the cracker/cheese mixture to cover chicken
  • Place on baking sheet
  • When all chicken breasts are covered….spread some of the remaining cracker/cheese mixture over the chicken breasts
  • Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes until chicken is cooked through and no longer pink
  • Serve and enjoy

Source:  N. Rezich

 

 

 

Slow Cooker Chicken and Stuffing

Welcome to Monday everyone!!  Our perfect spring weather continues here in Michigan slowly, steadily wiping away our memories of cold, snowy, rainy, dismal days.  Days like today and the last two are what I look forward too once we get through the Christmas holidays….these are the days that I wait for and literally count down to.

Of course warmer temperatures has brought an increase in utilizing our bbq grill.  This past weekend we spent time outside in the yard cleaning up and uncovering things so a quick hot dog or burger as we moved through Saturday and Sunday was perfect for us and tasty.

Grilling though did bring up a quick conversation on whether or not to leave the slow cooker out or to put it in the cabinet downstairs for the summer.  For right now I’m opting to keep it out and use it at least once maybe twice a week during the summer.  My reasoning is to use it instead of the oven in order to keep the kitchen cool.

Today, I have a tasty slow cooker recipe for you.  When I first found this recipe and saved it I went back to it several times before deciding to give it a try.  I hesitated because I just wasn’t sure how well a stove top stuffing would turn out in a slow cooker I was afraid it would either be undercooked or that it would turn to mush.

I’m happy to say that this chicken and stuffing dish turned out fantastic and I’m happy to share it with you today.  The chicken was tender and the stuffing was nice and moist.  We served it with mashed potatoes and peas and it was a delicious meal.  Walt, not generally a fan of boxed stuffing gave it two thumbs up which means it will be a keeper in our house.

I found this recipe on http://team-t-adventures.blogspot.com/2010/01/easy-crockpot-chicken-stuffing.html through Pinterest.  Give it a try, let us know how it turns out for you.

 

Chicken and Stuffing

SLOW COOKER CHICKEN AND STUFFING

What You’ll Need:

4 thawed chicken breasts

1 6 oz. package of Stove Top Stuffing Mix

1/2 cup of sour cream

1/4 cup of water

1 can cream of chicken soup

Directions:

  • Spray you slow cooker with non-stick spray
  • Lay chicken breasts on bottom of slow cooker – Season (I used Lawry’s seasoning)
  • Open the envelope of stuffing and pour evenly over chicken (yes – uncooked)
  • Whisk sour cream, soup and water together in a small bowl
  • Pour the mixture evenly over the stuffing (you may have to spread it a little)
  • Cook on LOW 4 hours until chicken in cooked through
  • Fluff and serve

Baked Chicken Fajitas

It’s no secret, Walt and I love Mexican food, so it should be no surprise that I would be drawn to this recipe posted on Pinterest by Six Sisters  http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/p/about-us.html.

I will admit that at first I was just a wee-bit skeptical that baked fajitas could be as tasty as traditional fajitas but these were delicious!!  I will also admit that we both helped ourselves to one more than we should have, I’m going to justify that with the fact they are baked.

The only draw back to this recipe is the diced tomatoes.  Even having drained the tomatoes first, I still ended up with a little more liquid at the bottom of the dish than I would have liked but it did not take away from the taste or quality of this dish.

Try them, let us know how they turn out for you.  Enjoy!!

BAKED CHICKEN FAJITAS

Chicken Fajitas

What You’ll Need:
1 pound boneless, skin-less chicken breasts, cut into strips
1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chilies
1 medium onion, sliced
1 large bell pepper, seeded and sliced
2 Tablespoon vegetable oil
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon salt
12 flour tortillas, warmed to serve

Directions:

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees
  • Grease a 13×9 baking dish
  • Mix together chicken, tomatoes, chilies, peppers, and onions in the dish
  • In a small bowl combine the oil and spices
  • Drizzle the spice mixture over the chicken and toss to coat
  • Bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender
  • Serve with warmed tortillas and enjoy!

Chicken Fajitas

Source:  http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2012/01/baked-chicken-fajitas-recipe.html

 

Destiny?

Destiny…..”The hidden power believed to control what will happen in the future; fate.”  I truly do believe that things happen for a reason; the detour, the lost keys, a last-minute change in routine.  Events that happen to either put us in the right place at the right time or events which happen to keep us from being in the wrong place at the wrong time.  When the outcome is positive it’s because it was meant to be, when the outcome is negative I believe it’s because we’re meant to learn something from it.  Some of us learn from those experiences…some of us don’t.

I was scheduled to start a new job on Friday with Home Depot as a sales associate.  Yesterday at 1:00 p.m. the human resources person for the location I’ll be working at called to confirm my appointment on Thursday to complete employment paperwork and confirm my orientation at a sister store on Friday.  At 2:00 p.m. the phone rang again and it was the HR person informing me that orientation has been cancelled and could potentially be scheduled for next week, she’ll call me back.  I inquired as to whether or not I should still come in on Thursday to fill out the papers and she said no.  She said that they were undergoing some “changes” and that I would be notified of a new orientation date.  I will admit I hung up confused, disappointed, frustrated and yes, I will admit, even a little angry.

Has destiny stepped in?  Is there a reason for this delay that will alter my future or is it making sure I’m not in the wrong place at the wrong time?  Will another position present itself to me in the next few days that I would rather accept?  Perhaps my job board stalking will finally pay off?  I know, now you’re wondering what a “job board stalker” is, let me explain; a job board stalker hangs out on all the popular job boards sites all day, each board open on the lap top and as soon as a job is posted, not yet one second old, you immediately hit the send button with your resume attached hoping your resume is at the top of the heap.

For whatever reason, I am not starting a new job this Friday.  Will I ever actually become a Home Depot employee?  Only my “destiny” knows what it has planned for me, I’ll wait and see what she has in store.  For now I’m still looking, still hopeful that my resume will spark interest with the right person, at the right time and for the right place.

Today I am going to leave you with a recipe for “Slow Cooker Chicken Pot Pie Stew” which I found on http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Slow-Cooker-Chicken-Pot-Pie-Stew/Detail.aspx.  This recipe is great when you know you have a taste for chicken pot pie but know you won’t have time to whip one up when you get home after a long day.  Throw everything into the crock pot in the morning, come home and bake a roll of your favorite Pillsbury biscuits and you’ve got dinner on the table.

Of course I made some minor modifications to mine, well actually some major changes which is reflected in my recipe below.  The link above will take you to the original recipe on allrecipes.com. which inspired my version.  Enjoy!!

SLOW COOKER CHICKEN POT PIE STEW 

Slow cooker chicken pot pie

 What You’ll Need:

4 chicken breasts cut into cubes

5 large red potatoes – washed and chopped into small pieces

1 small onion chopped

2 cans Cream of Chicken Soup

1-2 cloves of garlic minced fine

1/2 tsp. Tarragon

1 – 16 oz. bag frozen mixed vegetables

1 can Pillsbury Country Style Biscuits

Directions:

  • Spray crock pot with cooking spray
  • Place into crock pot in this order; chicken, onions, garlic, potatoes
  • Mix tarragon with the cream of chicken soup and spread over the top of the potatoes in the crock pot
  • Cook on High for 5 hours
  • Add the bag of frozen mixed vegetables
  • Cook on High an additional hour
  • When ready, bake biscuits as directed on package
  • Serve pot pie stew over hot biscuits

Source: N. Rezich – adapted from allrecipes.com

Back Into The Groove

Yes, yes, I know…it’s been a while.  I don’t know why, I just couldn’t get motivated to write.  Not for lack of anything going on….there is ALWAYS something going on here.

Saturday we celebrated Walt’s dad’s 81st birthday.  It was fun to get together with Walt’s family, I love catching up with Walt’s sister Anna and her girls, Nina and Michelle.  Nina and her husband Chris are expecting their first child this a summer, a baby girl.  So exciting!!  Michelle has four children, the oldest is sliding into those scary teen years..Joey will be 16, he’s a boy, but none-the-less  you still worry about everything.  Michelle also has a pre-teen daughter, Adrianna, a sweet quiet little lady who, like all girls, is exploring and creating her own identity her own niche.  I am so glad those years are behind me but Michelle seems to have things under control.  Josh went with us, he loves hanging out playing with John and Mary’s big old dog and with Michelle’s other children, the younger ones, Lindsey and Billy.

Monday, our Joshua turned nine years old.  Nine, I remember the day he was born so clearly…..not even 5 minutes old and he tried to pee on me…lol, I even changed his first poopy diaper.  I tell Josh that story all the time, I’ll stop when he starts dating so I won’t embarrass him.  I was lucky that Cindy allowed me to stay in the room while she delivered, it was an amazing experience.

I had a second interview with the Home Depot this week and things look promising.  I interviewed for a sales associate position in the garden dept. and actually got a call for a season position, 29 hours a week.  I’ll share more about that another time.

Today I’ll leave you with a great slow cooker soup recipe, Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup.  Walt and I loved this, try it we’re sure you will too.

SLOW COOKER CHICKEN TORTILLA SOUP

Chicken Tortilla Soup

What You’ll Need:

1 lb Chicken breast, trimmed
15 oz Can sweet whole corn kernels, drained
15 oz Can diced tomatoes, drained
5 Cup Chicken stock
3/4 Cup Onion, chopped
3/4 Cup Green pepper, chopped
1 Serrano pepper, minced
2 Cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp  Chili powder
1 1/2 tsp Salt, divided
1 tsp Ground pepper, divided
Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
Seasoned tortilla strips

Directions:

  • To your slow cooker add the first 9 ingredients plus 1 tsp salt and 3/4 tsp ground pepper.
  • Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.

Source:  http://www.pincookie.com/slow-cooker-chicken-tortilla-soup/