Posts Tagged ‘Quick dinners’

Monday Motivation: Super Easy Mexican Yumminess in the Slow Cooker

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017

So good!

My family loves slow cooker Monday!

I doubled the original recipe so we could have leftovers. I mixed a little white rice and the chicken mixture in a bowl, and placed it in a warm tortilla. I garnished it with a Mexican mix cheese and sour cream. Yummy!

2 (15 ounce) can corn, drained
2 large chicken breasts
1 package taco seasoning
2 (10 ounce) cans tomatoes with chilies (Rotel)
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1/3 cup (packed) cilantro, chopped
Juice of 1 1/2 lime
Spray and then grease bottom of crock-pot with cooking spray.
Spread corn into the bottom of the pot and lay chicken on top. Sprinkle chicken with taco seasoning. Layer on tomatoes and then black beans.
Cook on low for 2-3 hours.
When done, shred chicken with two forks (it will fall apart easily).
Mix in cilantro and lime juice.
Serve in tortillas with rice, cheese, sour cream, and salsa.

Attribution: Garnish and Glaze. Recipe Source: adapted from cookbook “365 Day of Slow-Cooking” by Karen Bellessa Petersen

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Farfalle Pasta with Exotic Mushroom Sauce

Saturday, January 30th, 2016
Farfalle with Exotic Mushroom Sauce

Farfalle with Exotic Mushroom Sauce

I was in the mood for pasta. The grey day reminded me of New Jersey in the winter—but about thirty degrees warmer. My dull headache due to the barometric pressure made me think of my friends who suffer migraines during this weather, and I’m thankful mine wasn’t so bad.

I found this recipe on I changed the ratio of ingredients to my taste and because I was cooking for two.

1/2 pound uncooked farfalle (bow tie pasta)
2 tablespoon butter
8 ounces presliced exotic mushroom blend
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 finely chopped shallot
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup dry white wine
2/3 cup or less whipping cream
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Minced fresh parsley (optional)


Cook pasta according to package directions, drain.
Melt the butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, onion, shallots, 1 teaspoon salt, and pepper; cook 10 minutes, then add garlic and cook  for 2 minutes. Cook until liquid is reduced and mushrooms are tender, stirring occasionally. Add wine; cook 2 minutes or until liquid evaporates slightly, stirring occasionally. Remove the skillet from heat.
Add the whipping cream, toss the pasta until coated evenly, then add the cheese, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Toss gently again to evenly coat the pasta. Stir in remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Garnish with minced fresh parsley, if desired. Serve immediately.



Serve them in a pretty bowl like this from Williams and Sonoma


Rustic Italian Tortellini Soup

Wednesday, October 28th, 2015
It's as delicious as it looks

It’s as delicious as it looks

Those of you who know me and follow the blog know I love soup. The weather is just beginning to cool off here in Tampa, and what better way to celebrate the weather change than a quick but deceptively easy soup. Make this on a night when time is limited and you’ll be surprised—it tastes like you’ve fussed for hours!




3 Italian turkey or chicken sausage links (4 ounces each), casings removed

1 medium onion, chopped

6 garlic cloves, minced

2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth

1-3/4 cups water

1/2 cup of dry red wine

1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained

1 package (9 ounces) refrigerated cheese tortellini

1 package (6 ounces) fresh baby spinach, coarsely chopped

2-1/4 teaspoons minced fresh basil or 3/4 teaspoon dried basil

1/4 teaspoon pepper

2 dashes crushed red pepper flakes

Shredded Parmesan cheese, optional

Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a preheated and sprayed stock pot. Crumble sausage into the pot; add onion. Cook and stir over medium heat until meat is no longer pink. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the broth, water and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and add red wine.
Bring a separate pot of water to a boil and add tortellini. Cook for 7-9 minutes or until just tender, stirring occasionally, remove, drain, and set aside. Add the spinach, basil, pepper and pepper flakes to the soup. Cook 2-3 minutes longer or until spinach is wilted. Place tortellini in the bottom of the soup bowl and fill bowl with soup. Serve with cheese if desired.

Attribution: A Taste of Home

No Mayo Mediterranean Chicken Salad

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

IMG_1316My husband subscribes to Runner’s World and we often find recipes we like that are light and tasty. This recipe has an added bonus – chicken salad made without the fat of mayonnaise. We used orecchiette because I think they’re cute.

Mediterranean Chicken
Chicken packs protein, B vitamins, and immune-boosting zinc. Nitrates in spinach help boost oxygen delivery to muscles.

Choose Your Pasta
5 cups cooked shells, fusilli, or penne

Add the Mix-Ins
2 cups chopped rotisserie chicken (we had made a beer can chicken the day before)
2 cups baby spinach
3/4 cup sliced, marinated artichoke hearts
1/2 cup sliced sun-dried tomatoes
1/4 cup diced feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped kalamata olives

Toss with Dressing
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon red-wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Finish with Garnish
Toasted pine nuts

I had this for dinner after a tennis match and I found it to be very satisfying. Check out Runner’s World for more great recipes. Enjoy!

Pesto and Veggie Pizza

Sunday, January 20th, 2013
Fresh veggie pizza

How did you spend your Saturday morning?

We washed windows. I could no longer stand looking out my windows and seeing the accumulation of dust and pollen. There are certain aspects of living in Florida that go along with the glorious weather; one is mold and the other is cleaning windows often.

After working for several hours we were exhausted. The inevitable question came up, “What do you want for dinner?” I suggested a veggie pizza, and my husband quickly agreed.

This pizza took about 15 minutes to put together. The only thing missing was the addition of black olives. Make sure to let the dough rest for at least an hour, otherwise it will be difficult to roll out.


1 package of pre-made pizza dough     1 small container Buitoni Pesto   1/2 sliced red bell pepper     1 package fresh mozzarella cheese     2 cloves sliced fresh garlic      1 separated sliced sweet onion      4 large white mushrooms, sliced    Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Roll out the dough with a rolling pin (rubbed with a bit of olive oil to prevent sticking) on a piece of wax paper. Transfer to a pizza stone or a metal perforated pizza pan. Take out generous spoonfuls of the pesto and spread onto the dough leaving about two inches of dough around the entire circle’s perimeter. Spread out the cheese, then the peppers, onions,  mushrooms, spinach, and finally the garlic. Drizzle a bit of the evoo over the top. Bake at 400 degrees until the crust is golden brown, about 25 minutes. Let cool five to ten minutes and grate your favorite cheese and black pepper over the top. Enjoy!

Mongolian Beef Stir-Fry

Sunday, April 22nd, 2012

I’ve become obsessed with the cookbook ‘Cooking Light – Fresh Fast Food’.

Mongolian Beef

I’ve tried several recipes, and loved them all! The recipes are simple in preparation and do not require many ingredients. Below is a recipe that we made tonight for dinner – Mongolian beef. This is ridiculously simple and very flavorful. I adjusted the amounts of the ingredients so there would be leftovers. Try it on a night when you don’t have a lot of time.


1 3/4 pounds of thinly sliced flank steak          2 tablespoons veggie oil1/2 cup hoisin sauce          3 tablespoons water          2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger       1 1/2 teaspoons pressed garlic          1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper, to taste          4 green onions sliced diagonally into 1 inch slices

Heat a large chef pan over medium high heat. Add oil and cook steak until it begins to brown and liquid has begun to evaporate. Stir occasionally.

While steak cooks, combine hoisin sauce and next 5 ingredients in a small bowl. Add sauce mixture and onions to the meat in the pan, cook for 1 to 2 minutes or until sauce is slightly reduced. (Do not overcook meat). Serve immediately over Jasmine rice, with steamed pea pods.

Notes: Pea Pods are best when bright green and crunchy. They can be steamed, sauteed separately from the beef, or blanched quickly in boiling water. We had the butcher slice the meat for us since they have the equipment to make it very thin. Don’t be shy, this is their job!