Monday, November 26, 2012

Slow Cooked Elk with Rich Tomato Gravy

This is a modification of a pot roast recipe we enjoy. The tomato gravy compliments the elk so perfectly. My 4 year-old twins couldn't get enough of this and actually asked for second helpings! (They don't ask for second helping of ANYTHING). This takes a little bit of effort up front but the results are wonderful. Be sure to thaw your roast before cooking to make this more tender. (My favorite method: place frozen roast in a ziploc bag and the place the bag in a large bowel. Cover the bag with cool water and let thaw overnight in the refrigerator.)

FYI: Elk is super lean so don't skimp on the added oil, otherwise you end up with tough dry elk.

3 TBSP vegetable oil
1 elk roast (3-4 lbs)
1 large onion, thinly sliced
3 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1 small bag of baby carrots or 3 large carrots, peeled and cut in pieces
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 TBSP flour
1 can (10 oz) condensed tomato soup
1/2 cup beef broth

In a large skillet, heat 1 TBSP oil over medium-high heat. Add roast and cook, turning, until brown on all sides, about 8 minutes. Pour 2 TBSP oil into slow cooker and transfer roast to cooker.

Reduce heat to medium. Add onions, celery and carrots to skillet and cook, stirring, until vegetables are softened, about 7 minutes. Add garlic, mustard, thyme, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute. Sprinkle mixture with flour and stir. Add romato soup and broth and cook, stirring, until thickened.

Pour mixture over roast, cover and cook on high 4-6 hours or low 8-12 hours, until meat is very tender.
This is excellent served with mashed potatoes.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Cranberry Relish so easy my 4 year old made it

This is a great recipe for anyone who loves cranberry relish but doesn't like all the sugar. My father-in-law is diabetic and has difficulty with regular cranberry sauce so this is a great alternative. The best part is that you just make it in the blender and Viola! Cranberry Relish! Apart from coring and seeding, my 4 year old daughter really did make this. FYI: the picture is chunkier than I prefer, but do whatever suits your family.

1 bag of fresh cranberries
1 apple, washed and cored (peel on)
1 orange, rind on, seeds removed
1/4 cup agave or honey. More to taste if desired.

Place all ingredients in a blender and puree. If your blender isn't very big, start out with two batches to grind up the big chunks then combined to finish the puree.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Marinated Chicken (7up Chicken)

While growing up I thought that chicken breasts were only made one way because my parents would really only prepare this recipe. I loved it and rediscovered it recently which made me very nostalgic. The only trick to this recipe is to use regular soda, NO DIET SODA. The sugar is a key component to making this chicken so juicy and it really only adds a negligible amount to the end product. Enjoy!


1/2 cup soy sauce
12 oz Lemon-Lime soda pop
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 tsp horseradish (optional)
4-5 chicken breasts

Combine first 4 ingredients in a ziploc bag or bowl with a lid. Add chicken breast and marinate at least 30 minutes (the longer the better, I prefer overnight). Grill chicken over medium heat until cooked all the way through.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Chicken Salad Sandwiches

My husband recently requested chicken salad sandwiches for a lunch at the lake. I haven't made chicken salad before because I don't like a lot of the fillers that people put in them. I found a simple recipe which I modified to be healthier and everyone LOVED it, including me! To make it healthier, omit mayo and use 3/4 cup yogurt. Also the bread makes a big difference in how healthy these are. My husband likes it on a croissant but I like it on a hearty bread. One last thing, you will need more or less ingredients depending on the size of your chicken. I used a pretty small chicken so adjust accordingly.

1 whole cooked rotisserie chicken
1/4 cup mayo
1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
1 cup small-diced celery (about 2 stalks)
1 1/2 Tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon leaves
   or 1 1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon leaves
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
Bread of choice
Green Salad

Remove meat from chicken and shred or chop into bite-sized pieces. Place the chicken in a bowl and add the mayo, yogurt, tarragon, celery, salt and pepper. Toss well.

Spread chicken mixture on bread. Top with salad leaves and enjoy!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Super Easy Baked Mac and Cheese

My family loves Mac and Cheese. Because of this I feel like I have tried every recipe I can get my hands on trying to come up with something easy without resorting to plastic looking processed cheese product. This recipe is one of my favorites. What makes it so awesome? The sauce is assembled in the blender! So easy! Fresh Parmesan cheese is best, if you use the pre-grated kind you may need to add extra liquid since it will absorb the surrounding liquid and may get a bit dry.


  • 3 cups
     (12 ounces) uncooked penne (tube-shaped pasta)
  • (12-ounce) carton 2% low-fat cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • 3 tablespoons panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
  1. Preparation
  2. 1. Preheat oven to 375°.
  3. 2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain; place in a large bowl.
  4. 3. Place cottage cheese in a food processor; process until smooth. Add cheddar cheese, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper. Blend until smooth. Add the cheese mixture to pasta, and stir well. Spoon mixture into an 11 x 7-inch glass or ceramic baking dish coated with cooking spray.
  5. 4. Combine remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan, panko, and parsley in a small bowl. Sprinkle evenly over pasta mixture. Bake at 375° for 10 minutes.
  6. 5. Preheat broiler (do not remove dish from the oven).
  7. 6. Broil pasta 1 minute or until top browns.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Turkey Breakfast Sausage

20 oz. pkg. ground turkey
1 t. rubbed or ground sage
1 t. ground black pepper
1/4 t. red pepper flakes

In large bowl, combine turkey and seasonings. Mix thoroughly. Shape into patties (for calorie calculation, it is easiest to make 20 1 oz. patties). Heat skillet sprayed with Pam. Add patties and cook thoroughly until no longer pink inside.

Patties may also be frozen, and warmed up in the microwave for a quick breakfast.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Healthy Asian Lettuce Wraps

8 oz. water chestnuts
1 c. sliced mushrooms
5 green onions
6 (or more!) baby carrots (can grate these instead of chop)
Chop all of these really small (or the Pampered Chef food chopper works well)

Cook 1 pound ground lean turkey or chicken in 1 T. olive oil or cooking spray. Cook until just a little pink left in meat, then add veggies. Cook until meat is done.
Add sauce and cook just a minute longer.

Serve in iceberg, romaine, or butter lettuce leaves

3 T. soy sauce or liquid aminos
2 T. sugar
3 cloves crushed garlic
1 1/2 t. rice vinegar or red wine vinegar