Summery main dish salad

We make a lot of salads in the summer, they are quick, easy, cool and not too filling.
Summery main dish salad
Here's one I came up with the other day that was spectacular with a lot of variety in it- tons of produce on sale at Kroger this week.  Try it, I think you'll like it.

Baby spinach, romaine, radicchio, arugula, carrots, purple cabbage, leftover chicken breast from a slow cooker rotisserie style chicken, Swiss cheese, strawberries, peaches & pine nuts-  I topped with a couple of Tablespoons of Catalina but a vinaigrette or really any salad dressing you like would be good on it.

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Pressure Cooker Pot Roast

Electric pressure cooker
My grandma always used a pressure cooker, and now I know why, and it's not just because you have a fabulous meal in an hour.  You would think a pot roast is a pot roast and it would taste the same as the pot roast you make in the oven or the crockpot, but you'd be wrong.  The flavors are intensified and it is tender, tender, tender-  melts in your mouth like buddah, baby.

We made an incredibly basic roast with minimal seasonings and onions as the only additions and it was to die for good.
Sliced onions

Peel and slice two large onions then lay them in the bottom of your pressure cooker.  (I am using my fabulous, wonderful, best ever Cuisinart Electric Pressure Cooker.)
Seasoned boneless chuck roast
Rub your seasonings into your meat- we used a garlic salt w/parsley blend and fresh cracked black pepper.

Put your meat on your onions and add 2 cans beef broth (we used 2 cans of Swanson's 98% fat free because I got them on clearance), you can use any you want- low sodium, homemade, even bullion cubes dissolved in water.

Lock the lid into place and set the time on for 50 minutes to 1 hour.  Let 'er rip while you get your potatoes or whatever you are serving with it ready then release pressure when the time is up.

Remove meat & onions and at this point you can make your gravy right in the pressure cooker by mixing cornstarch, Wondra or flour and water, myo gravy mix or use our simple, never fail perfect gravy recipe using the liquid from the pressure cooker.
Pot roast w/mashed potatoes & gravy, sesame green beans

Pressure cooker pot roast

1 boneless chuck roast (~4 lbs)
2 large onions, sliced
2 cans beef broth
seasonings of choice

Put onions in bottom of pressure cooker.
Rub seasonings into meat and lay on top of onions
Pour on broth.
Lock the lid and turn on high, cook for ~1 hour.
Release pressure and remove meat & onions from cooker.
Make gravy and serve with sides of choice- we like roasted potatoes & carrots, mashed potatoes or use as au juice for french dip sandwiches.

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Menu for week of 5/21 - 5/27

Sausage & pepper stuffed shells
Ugh it is so hot here-  90's already, I don't like to even think of the *scorcher* months of June & July.  Thankfully I have some toys that I can use that won't heat up our house as much.  My current love is a Cuisinart Electric Pressure Cooker my mommy got me.  She is the best.  :)

Major deliciousness will be a repeat-  in last weeks menu I put down sausage & pepper stuffed shells because I knew I wanted something made with our spaghetti sauce, and both Italian sausage & pepper hoagies and stuffed shells sounded good so I figured I would play around and find a way to combine them-  and there are so many shells in a box I knew that I could make plenty so I also "cooked" for the freezer.  They were so good that we're having them again this week already.  Score!

In no particular order, here is our menu for the week:
Pressure cooker pot roast w/onions
Pot Roast w/onions (pressure cooker); mashed potatoes; sesame green beans

Breakfast for dinner: farm fresh fried egg sandwiches on English muffins w/cheese; honeydew, cantaloupe & watermelon

Pot pie or cottage pie made w/leftover pot roast; ww dinner rolls; tossed salad w/choice of dressing

Veggie egg rolls; easy fried rice; sliced kiwi & strawberries
Brats served on toasted buns w/caramelized onions; oven baked regular or sweet potato fries: fresh fruit
Sausage & pepper stuffed shells
Sausage & pepper stuffed shells: garlic bread made from leftover buns; romaine salad w/lots of veggies & creamy Italian dressing
Bountiful garden veggie casserole
Oven *fried* panko & parmesan chicken strips; bountiful garden veggie casserole

I'll be adding the recipes for the pot roast and stuffed shells later today, but I wanted to get this linked up to MPM.  What's on your menu this week?  Are you playing along?  For more menu ideas head on over to I'm an Organizing Junkie.

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Menu for week of 5/14 - 5/20

It's summer hot here, so fairly light eating- a lot of new to us recipes we'll be posting the ones that work well so be sure to look for them if you want to add to your repertoire.  As usual, the menu is in no particular order, we'll see how the week goes and what sounds good on which day and fits in with our schedules (which have lightened up considerably now that school's over for another semester).

Homemade chicken gyros w/tzatziki; watermelon & honeydew

Pasta salad loaded w/veggies & fresh mozzarella; ? not sure what we'll serve with, if anything

Updated pork chops & applesauce; sesame green beans

BLAST (bacon, lettuce, avocado, spinach & tomato) wraps; smoothies or rootbeer floats

Italian sausage and pepper stuffed shells; garlic bread;  mock Caesar salad (dressing has no eggs, no anchovies)

Simple baked chicken breasts; baked veggie casserole; garlic bread made on leftover buns

Breakfast for dinner-  dippy eggs (that's what Ian calls poached eggs and it stuck); buttered bagels; fruit

What's cooking at your house?  Are you eating summery yet or did you get that snow last week?  For more menu ideas head on over to I'm an Organizing Junkie.

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Menu for week of 5/7 - 5/13

Trying a new salad that got outstanding reviews this week since we have all the ingredients-  hoping it brings a bit of the Island Magic to our sweltering days.  Nothing else much fancy going on-  furniture will be delivered tomorrow and we've been doing  a LOT of reorganizing/rearranging and are getting on track to repaint, refloor, revamp this place so we'll have to see how it goes.  Either we'll follow the menu in no particular order or eat lots of salads and sandwiches. ;)

Baked chicken breasts*, spicy curly sweet potato oven fries (HM); grape tomatoes
*make extra chicken for Chinese chicken salad

Lemon pepper fish (light white, whatever is fresh); spaghetti squash w/oven roasted grape tomatoes, red, yellow & orange peppers, and zucchini topped w/shaved parmesan; garlic bread made from leftover hamburger & hot dog buns; strawberries

Light & easy Chinese chicken salad; Hawaiian sweet bread

Breakfast for dinner: omelet w/softened cream cheese (we mix in a bit of garlic powder & whatever spices strike our fancy), roasted red peppers, mushrooms & green chilies; 12 grain toast; fresh fruit

Pressure cooker beef stew; hot buttered dinner rolls

Island pork tenderloin salad; ??  maybe some pineapple & kiwi or something, not sure- we'll see what sounds good when we make it

French onion soup; open faced cheddar, tomato & bacon sandwiches on rye

What's cooking in your neck of the woods?  Trying any new recipes, or have you tried any lately?  We're always looking for something new to add to our repertoire.  For more menu ideas head on over to I'm an Organizing Junkie.

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Sesame Green Beans

This is one of those stupidly easy recipes that you can't screw up, but everyone compliments them.  In fact, we made them for Ki's wedding and I'm almost embarrassed to admit that due to time & budget constraints we went with canned whole green beans and this was the MOST requested recipe.

How good are they, really?  For reference, Ki's granny made her crawfish fettucini and everyone who tried it wants her to move here and they will take turns hosting her so she can cook for them.  She is a  seriously excellent cook, one of the best I know, and I learned a lot from her.  She was one who requested the recipe and said that whenever she has to bring something to a potluck she will be making these, and will probably never eat green beans any other way.

Green beans, any kind- fresh, frozen, canned, doesn't matter.
Cook green beans however you like them done- crisp tender, mush, doesn't matter but DON'T season them!  When they are done to your liking add equal parts butter and soy sauce, just enough to coat, probably a Tbsp of each for a lb of beans. Sprinkle with sesame seeds - we prefer toasted, but plain work as well.  Toss gently.

For the wedding we kept them warm in a crockpot and they stayed perfect.

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