Brad’s Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Carrots

I’m giving you a holiday gift today, a recipe that is company-worthy with just two ingredients for a main dish. Sure, it’s semi-homemade, but who cares when it’s this delicious?

The secret ingredient is called Soy Vey Veri Veri Teriyaki Marinade and Sauce. Now I’m sure you think you’ve never heard of it, but it’s widely available, so check your supermarket. Here’s what it looks like:

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Unforgettable Chicken Casserole

My best friend Jennifer is one of the world’s best cooks. So when she says something is unforgettable, I believe her! This sounds like an amazing cheat meal!

Makes 6 to 8 servings

3 cups chopped deli-roasted chicken
1 cup finely chopped celery
1 cup (4 oz.) grated cheddar cheese
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup mayo
1 (10 3/4-ounce) can reduced sodium cream of chicken soup
1 (4-oz) can water chestnuts, drained and chopped
11/2 cups French fried onion rings

Stir together first 8 ingredients in a large bowl. Spoon into a lightly greased 11- x-7 in. baking dish.

Bake at 350 for 40 min.  Sprinkle onion rings evenly over top. Bake 5 minutes or until bubbly around edges. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Delicious Lasagna

I made this lasagna for my family when they came for Christmas 2016, and it was really yummy! I’d had it at book club and never forgotten it.
1 pound sweet Italian sausage
3/4 pound lean ground beef
1/2 cup minced onion
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
12 lasagna noodles
16 ounces ricotta cheese
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds,
Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6
noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Taco Seasoning

The last time I needed a taco seasoning packet, I called a neighbor and they were out of the seasoning. I started digging for a good recipe, so that I could keep it on hand. What I found is that it is simple and fresher tasting. Add a pound of hamburger meat or ground turkey with this recipe and you will immediately notice the difference. If you prefer a slightly milder flavor, use a little less. I use ground turkey, flavored with this recipe (you can’t tell the difference from hamburger) on a salad with the Homemade Salsa on this blog as my go to meal. You can also use this recipe to flavor turkey for the Taco Soup recipe found on this blog.

1 tablespoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

Baked BBQ Chicken

This recipe is outstanding.  Bragging rights for the best and easiest BBQ chicken start here. The extra step in marinating before baking makes it all worthwhile.  I never knew baked chicken could be so yummy.  The smoked paprika gives the chicken a subtle smoky flavor.  If you don’t have that ingredient, invest now…..as we use it in the delicious fish tacos featured on this website as well.  The perfect tenderness of the chicken comes from marinating in four simple ingredients.  Enjoy!

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Best BBQ Burger

I can’t believe I haven’t posted this recipe before. I made it about 10 times last summer. Everyone loves them and can’t figure out why. But I know the secret ingredient – a delicious, sweet barbecue sauce you mix in with the hamburger. You can make the sauce and even mix up the patties beforehand, and just throw them on the grill when you’re ready to eat. Because my family believes in living life to the fullest, we make them as sliders and serve them on delicious, sweet Hawaiian rolls. Enjoy!

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3 Cheese Stuffed Pasta Shells

cheese shells

There is something about stuffed pasta shells that sounds fancy and hard. There is something about making them that is easy and fun.  It’s economical and great made ahead.  

My first love is taking something to friends that maybe they don’t make themselves.  It’s hard, as most of my friends are excellent cooks.  I have made this several times over the past few weeks and everyone gives it two thumbs up.  Add a salad and a loaf of French bread and call it dinner!

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