What’s for dinner? Cheesy Pizza Sticks

Kids love finger foods! OK, OK, so do grown-ups!

It was pizza night the other night and I decided to try something new. It was getting late and I wasn’t in the mood to make a big meal.

Here’s what I made:

Cheesy Pizza Sticks

Cheesy Pizza Sticks

Ingredients:

1 tube of refrigerated pizza dough

10 mozzarella stringable cheese

40 slices of pizza pepperoni

Pizza sauce

2 Tbsp butter

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp dried basil

Directions:

Preheat oven to 450 deg.

Open the tube of pizza dough and roll it out to 1/8″ thick and cut it into 10 equal pieces.

Place 4 slices of pepperoni on each piece of dough. Top with a cheese string. Squeeze a line of pizza sauce on top.

Stretch the dough over the stack and seal the edges with your fingers.

Place the rolls on the prepared baking sheet.

Melt the butter, add garlic powder and basil, and stir to combine. Brush the tops of each roll with the butter mixture.

Place the baking sheet into the preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes.

Remove from oven, let cool for a couple minutes, serve and enjoy!

* you can use any toppings that you like to fill these. Try Hawaiian, peppers, olives or mushrooms. Just make sure the pieces are cut small and they aren’t over-filled.

Cheesy Pizza Stick

Cheesy Pizza Sticks

What’s for dinner? Miso Glazed Salmon and Mushroom Wild Rice

I’ve probably mentioned it before, but we love salmon!

Fortunately, a big filet of wild coho was affordable at the grocery store, so I took advantage.

Here’s what I made:

Miso Salmon & Wild Rice

Miso Glazed Salmon

Ingredients:

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

2 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp hot water

2 tbsp miso (soybean paste)

1 large salmon fillet (about 1 inch thick)

Cooking spray

1 tbsp chopped fresh chives

Directions:

Preheat broiler.

Combine first 4 ingredients, stirring with a whisk. Arrange fish in a shallow baking dish coated with cooking spray. Spoon miso mixture evenly over fish.

Broil 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork, basting twice with miso mixture. Sprinkle with chives.

Wild Rice Blend & Mushrooms

Ingredients:

4 servings of cooked wild rice blend (I used Lundberg Wild Blend Rice)

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp butter

½ medium onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

12 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced

½ cup chicken stock

½ tsp Kosher salt

½ tsp dried thyme

1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley, optional

Instructions: 

Prepare wild rice according to package instructions in a 3-quart saucepan.

Meanwhile, in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat, add olive oil and butter and sauté onion until tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic and mushrooms and cook until tender, about 7 to 10 more minutes. Pour in chicken stock, salt and dried thyme and cook until the chicken stock is reduced by about half. Remove from heat and stir mushroom mixture into the cooked rice and top with fresh parsley, if using. Serve warm.

I steamed up some broccoli and sliced up fresh avocado to have with dinner and everyone gobbled it up!

What’s for dinner? Chicken Alfredo Pasta Bake

It was another rainy day in the city today…

Something hearty and easy was in order for dinner tonight. Our daughter had some homework to get done afterschool, and I wanted to help her with it, so being in the kitchen a lot wasn’t gonna fly. I needed something that could cook unattended for awhile, so here’s what I made:

Chicken Alfredo Pasta Bake

Chicken Alfredo Pasta Bake

adapted from gimmesomeoven.com

Ingredients:

Chicken Alfredo Pasta Bake Ingredients

350g short pasta

2 cups shredded, cooked chicken (about 2 small chicken breasts)

1 batch alfredo sauce (see below)

1-1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (I didn’t have enough, so I added in some cheddar)

1 cup frozen peas

Handful of spinach (chopped)

Alfredo Sauce Ingredients:

1 Tbsp. olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbsp. flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup low-fat milk (I used 1%)
3/4 cup freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cook the pasta al dente in a large stockpot of well-salted boiling according to package instructions. Drain. Return pasta to the stockpot and add chicken, alfredo sauce, peas and spinach. Gently toss to combine until the pasta is evenly coated.

Pour half of the pasta into a greased 11×7-inch or 9×13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with 1 cup of cheese. Layer the remaining half of the pasta evenly on top. Sprinkle evenly with the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until the cheese is melted and just barely starts to turn golden. Remove and serve immediately, sprinkled with additional toppings if desired.

To make the Alfredo Sauce:

Heat olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and saute one minute, stirring occasionally, until fragrant. Sprinkle with flour, and stir to combine. Saute for an additional minute to cook the flour, stirring occasionally.

Slowly add chicken broth, whisking to combine until smooth. Whisk in milk, and bring the mixture to a simmer. Let cook for an additional minute until thickened, then stir in Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper until the cheese melted. Remove from heat and set aside.

So this turned out to be awesome! No fighting with the kids to eat their dinner AND, Little Dude had 3, 3! helpings!!!

What’s for dinner? Garlic Dijon Baked Salmon

We all know that salmon is good for you!

Even our kids love the taste of salmon! Our daughter can’t get enough salmon sashimi on Sushi Night, but that’s an occasional treat.

Here’s what I made:

Garlic Dijon Baked Salmon

Garlic Dijon Baked Salmon

Ingredients:

1.5 lbs salmon fillets (I used wild coho)
2 Tbsp parsley, freshly chopped
2 large or 3 small garlic cloves, pressed
1/2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
1/8 cup light olive oil
2 Tbsp of fresh lemon juice
Lemon slices

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 450° F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.

In a small bowl, mix together: 2 Tbsp chopped parsley, 2-3 pressed cloves garlic, ½ Tbsp Dijon mustard, ½ tsp salt, ⅛ tsp of pepper, ⅛ cup of olive oil and 2 Tbsp of lemon juice.

Slice salmon into even portions. Lay them onto a lined baking dish with the skin-side-down.

Generously brush all sides of salmon with sauce and top with fresh slices of lemon.

Bake at 450°F for 12-15 min or until just cooked through and flaky. Don’t over-cook or it will be dry.

Serve with rice and your favourite veggies.

Another winner here! The kids wanted seconds!

What’s for dinner? Thin Crust Pizza with Creamy Garlic Sauce

We love pizza!

Who doesn’t?! It’s kid-friendly and you can put whatever toppings you like on them.

We wanted to switch things up a bit, so I tried out a new recipe for the pizza sauce.

Here’s what I made:

  
Thin Crust Pizza with Creamy Garlic Sauce

Ingredients:

4 x tortilla wraps (your choice of flavour)

2-3 Tbsp Creamy Garlic Sauce*

Toppings of your choice. We flash fried a couple of chicken breasts with some light seasoning and diced them up. Chopped mushrooms, spinach, and of course, black olives (the kids favourite).

1 cup grated cheese (non-dairy is perfect too)

For the White Garlic Sauce:
2 tbsp butter
3 tbsp flour
1 1/4 cup milk
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp fresh basil, finely chopped
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded

  

For the White Garlic Sauce:
Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour until no lumps remain.
Gradually whisk in milk. Add salt, pepper, garlic and basil.
Mix in Parmesan cheese and stir until the cheese has melted.
Remove from heat. Sauce will thicken as it stands.

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place the tortilla on a pizza pan or cookie sheet. Spread creamy garlic sauce over the entire surface of the tortilla. Add your toppings all over. Sprinkle with grated cheese. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until cheese is melted. Watch the edges of the tortilla so they don’t burn. Remove from oven and let cool for 2-3 minutes. Slice and sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and/ or Sriracha sauce if you’d like to kick it up a notch!

The kids gobbled up a half a pizza each! I’m definitely making this again!

What’s for dinner? Tater Tot Casserole

Today was a weird windy day!

The kids wanted to stay and play in the swirling leaves after school and before I knew it, it was 4 o’clock and we still had to hit up the grocery store!

Here’s what I whipped up:

Tater Tot Casserole

Tater Tot Casserole

Ingredients:
1 lb ground beef, turkey or chicken
1 onion, chopped
1 (10 ounce) can cream of mushroom soup*
1 (10 ounce) can cream of chicken soup*
72 tater tots (onion flavored or regular)
2 cups cheddar cheese, grated*
*reduced fat soup and cheese can be used

Directions:

Spray 9×13 pan with cooking spray.
Arrange tater tots in single layer.
Brown ground meat and onion together, drain.
Combine meat/ onion mixture & soup.
Spread evenly over tater tots.
Top with cheese and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

You can mix frozen broccoli, cauliflower, carrots or corn for a veggie component or serve them up along side if your kiddos hate it when their food touches each other! Score another win for Mommy! The kids LOVED this!

What’s baking? Wacky Cake and Mock Whipped Cream Icing

When I was a kid, we didn’t have baked goods that often.

Clearly we were missing out, because now as a parent, I LOVE to bake! I was chatting with my Mum the other day and she told me that she had made a Wacky Cake. I remember eating this when I was a kid and it was soooooo good! Especially when you kept it in the fridge. The icing stiffened up like butter and was amazing when you took a bite!

Wacky Cake, Crazy Cake or Depression Cake is a type of cake that was commonly made during the Great Depression. The ingredients include little or no milk, sugar, butter or eggs, because the ingredients were then either expensive or hard to obtain. It’s super moist and über yummy!

Wacky Cake

Wacky Cake

Ingredients:
1-1/2 cups flour (all-purpose)
3 tbsp cocoa (unsweetened)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp white vinegar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
5 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup water

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8″ square baking pan.

Mix first 5 dry ingredients in a large bowl. Make 3 depressions in dry ingredients. Pour vinegar in one depression, vanilla in the other and the vegetable oil in third larger depression. Pour water over all. Mix well until smooth.

Bake on middle rack of oven for 35 minutes. Oven baking times will vary, so check with toothpick to make sure it comes out clean. Cool.

Mock Whipped Cream Icing

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup icing sugar
2 tablespoons milk or half & half
2 tablespoons boiling water

Directions:

Beat butter & icing sugar together until light & creamy. Add milk slowly & keep beating. Add boiling water (must be boiling) little by little beating all the time.
Icing goes watery, keep beating for 5 minutes to thicken.
Flavour with vanilla.

Once the cake has cooled, top with the icing and place in the fridge. When the icing is firm, slice and enjoy!