Thursday, October 23, 2014

Thursday’s Side Dish: Nature Valley Breakfast Biscuits

Breakfast on-the-go best

The Mixed Stew recommends this food item for anyone who that has a difficult time waking up in the morning.  Nature Valley brand name breakfast biscuits contain 26 grams whole grain in each crunchy serving of biscuits.  They come in blueberry and honey but watch out for the possibility of newer flavors being issued.  An 8.85 oz. box comes with 5 individual servings of 4 biscuits.  We purchased 1 box for $2.50 at our local Giant.  Look for them at your favorite grocery chain.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Wednesday’s Helping: Alternative Ingredients for Burger Cheese Mac

No fancier cheeses means no problem

If you’re feeling a pinch in the wallet, then we suggest using less expensive cheese varieties compared to gouda and gruyere.  Regular American, cheddar, and even mozzarella don’t the pungent cheesy taste.  Pricier cheeses, such as asiago, may take some getting used to because of their pungent flavors.  Popular cheeses also come more readily available in low-fat and non-fat versions.   Using American and cheddar tends to be a favorite with the kids, too.  Substitute the heavy cream with light cream, sour cream, or even whole milk if you wanna lower the fat content.  Lastly, remember that the bacon can be eliminated to also lower the calorie count.     

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tuesday’s Cupful: Background on Cheeseburger Mac –N-Cheese

Oomph it up with melted cheese and beef

This dish is really two All-American staples in a casserole.  The Mixed Stew crew thought of our previous chili mac and macaroni and cheese offerings as we developed this recipe.  We recommend serving this instead of the same ol’ burgers and fries.  The quartet of gouda, gruyere, asiago, and parmesan cheeses melt then meld into ooey-gooey servings of a yummy mac –n-cheese.         

Monday, October 20, 2014

Monday’s Bread Bowl: Cheeseburger Mac –n- Cheese

It's beef-n-cheese time

This version of mac –n- cheese is one that we’ve wanted to share for some time.  It’s one cheesey dish to cut into that you’ll wanna add to your list of faves.  Here’s the recipe:

What you will need:

1 wooden spatula
1 large mixing bowl

1 large stockpot
Olive oil
Cooking oil spray
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 (12 oz.) packs of elbow macaroni, cooked al dente
4 slices bacon
1 cup gouda cheese, grated
1 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
1 aluminum baking pan
1 collander
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
2 tablespoons bread crumbs
1/2 cup asiago cheese, grated
1 onion, chopped small
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup milk
1 pint heavy cream
3 small chile peppers, minced
¼ Dijon mustard
1 lb ground beef, cooked and crumbled

Cooking and Directions:

Heat stock pot on medium-high heat.  Pour in olive oil, onion, garlic, and bacon.  Let ingredients sautee until onion turns translucent.  Gradually stir in all-purpose flour and milk.  Let the flour cook while constantly stirring.  This should form a slurry or rue.  Let the rue turn brown, which means the flour is cooked.  Add pepper, mustard, ground beef, and cream.  Continue to stir constantly.  Mix and pour in cheeses.  This should form a cheesey sauce.  Add the macaroni while tossing well.  Quickly remove pot from stove top.  Grease baking pan with cooking spray then add macaroni and cheese.  Spread out until level in pan.  Preheat oven at 350 degrees.  Pour bread crumbs over mac-n-cheese.  Place baking pan in heated for 30 minutes.  Let bread crumbs form golden crust.  Remove mac-n-cheese once ½ hour has elapsed.  Let cheesey mac rest for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.  Enjoy.         

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Wednesday’s Helping: Substitutes for Stuffed Peppers ala Mexico

Without Corno di Toro

The chili peppers lend heat and sweetness to our special recipe.  But what if you cannot find Italian Carmen peppers?  Remember that poblano, Anaheim chile, and even regular bell peppers can do instead.  We recommend farmers’ cheese or cottage cheese if you cannot find queso freco.  Meanwhile, substitute shrimp, canned salmon, or canned crab meat for the canned tuna for different twists on seafood flavors.  Lastly, eliminate the tuna all-together for real vegetarian fare.            

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Tuesday’s Cupful: Background on Stuffed Peppers ala Mexico

A bit of Mexican enchilada

Slicing into one of these stuffed peppers is comfy, like meatloaf, but also spicy like hot tamales.  The carno di toro aka Carmen pepper provides a sweet and peppery skin that acts like a crust to seal in juices for this dish.  Look for the common “longhorn-shape” of these award-winning peppers that often grows longer than 8 inches in length.  We also need to mention that this recipe is a spin on our baked enchiladas recipe.  The green chile verde sauce does the trick in forming a binding ingredient for this rich meal. 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Monday’s Bread Bowl: Tuna Stuffed Chili Peppers ala Mexico

Spicy, cheesy, and seafoodie

We recommend this dish if you’re in the mood for some Mexican comfort food that’s spicy but also loaded with seafood flavor.  Here’s the recipe:

1 large mixing bowl
1 metal bowl
Aluminum foil
1 (28 oz.) can green chile enchilada sauce
1 pair metal tongs

1 baking pan
1 whole egg, beaten
2 (12 oz.) blocks, queso fresco, chopped into small cubes
8 – 12 Carmen (Corno di toro-type) peppers
2 (5 oz.) cans of tuna, drained
1 cup spinach, coarsely chopped
1 yellow onion, diced small
3 garlic toes, minced
Olive oil

Cooking and Directions:

Slightly roast peppers on stove-top with metal tongs.  Do not blacken.  Turn as needed.  Create blisters but do not char.  Place peppers in metal bowl and set aside.  Combine cheese, tuna, onion, garlic, and egg in mixing bowl.  Mix well.  Set aside.

Preheat oven at 350 degrees.  Make a lengthwise incision in each pepper.  Remove seeds.  Repeat until all peppers are clean.  Carefully stuff peppers with tuna mixture as shown.  Position stuffed peppers on foil-lined baking pan.  Drizzle tops of peppers with olive oil.  Finally, pour green chile verde enchilada sauce in pan and around peppers.  Place peppers in oven for 1 hour or until cheese starts to brown.  Serve immediately.