Friday, December 12, 2008

Cabbage Rolls

As promised, another easy weeknight meal. After eating this dish throughout my childhood, I decided to look up a little history on it. I found out that cabbage rolls are a common peasant food originating in Europe and Western Asia. They were meant as a means for using up leftover food, so additions and changes are encouraged. The sauce varies widely by Finland and Sweden, the sauce is typically a bittersweet ligonberry jam. This tomato-based sauce would most likely be from Eastern Europe.

You could make it even healthier by using ground turkey and brown rice. Enjoy!

Grandma D's Cabbage Rolls

Mix together:
1 lb ground beef (or turkey)
3 Tbsp raw rice
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 can diced tomatoes

Rest of recipe calls for:
8-10 cabbage leaves
remainder from can of diced tomatoes
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste

Boil whole cabbage leaves until pliable, about 3-5 minutes. Drain. Trim rib from back of leaves. Roll meat in leaves like a burrito. Place in skillet, cover with remainder of can of diced tomatoes with a little salt, pepper, garlic powder, and oregano sprinkled over the cabbage rolls. Cover and simmer until done (about 45 minutes). Add a little stock or water if it gets too thick.

Monday, December 8, 2008

All You Need is Love

I'm always on the lookout for any signs from above, lessons in karma and other cosmic activity. So far, I have not found any images of the Virgin Mary on my grilled cheese sandwiches and have not seen a UFO. So imagine slicing off the side of a bell pepper for a salad and having this little extra goodie falling out onto your cutting board. A perfect heart!! I put it on my husband's plate and I got all mushy inside and thought it was a reminder of how much my family is shrouded in love...and how lucky we are to have each other.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Apricot Dijon Chicken

I was looking over my blog and realized that there are a lot of desserts and condiments and just not enough main dishes. Therefore, I will try to give you a few of my easy weeknight dinners in the next couple of posts. After a day of shopping, taxi-driving, baking, breaking up fights and picking up toys, it's really incredibly easy to order pizza. Believe me, I've been there....recently last night.

This simple one is from a recent Family Circle magazine and the whole family really seemed to enjoy it. The kids preferred theirs without the nuts and parsley (eww...something GREEN?)

I know everyone has a similar recipe in their files, but if you don't, give it a try. Pair it with brown rice and a salad for a healthy dinner.

Apricot-Dijon Chicken

1/3 cup apricot preserves
2 T ketchup
1 T dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts (I used walnuts)
1 box wild rice (I used brown rice)
1 T. olive oil (I omitted)

Make rice according to directions. Heat oven to 400. Spray baking dish with nonstick spray.

Whisk together apricot preserves, ketchup, mustard, ginger and garlic. Reserve 1/4 cup of mixture. Place chicken in dish and spread remaining apricot mixture over the tops. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until done.

To serve, lay one chicken breast on top of 1/2 cup rice, drizzle with a little extra sauce if desired. Sprinkle with chopped nuts and parsely, if you have any on hand.