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Dinner Recipes


This summer I had each of my daughters prepare dinner for our family.  We had quite the variety of recipes (which was great!) and it was nice to have new meals to put into the rotation.    One of the choices my daughter found online for taquitos.  I couldn't find the original recipe that she had so I found another one today and then tweaked it to accommodate the ingredients that I had in my pantry and fridge.  Feel free to experiment with what you have on hand!  I would have posted a picture, but there wasn't one left to photograph!

1 lb lean ground beef or ground turkey
2 tbsp taco seasoning (homemade or store-bought)
1/3 cup light cream cheese
1/2 cup salsa
1/2 cup of light sour cream
1 cup grated cheese
12 small flour tortillas (can also use corn tortillas)

Heat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly coat with cooking spray.

In a large frying pan over medium-high heat, brown the ground beef and break it up into crumbles as it cooks. Add the taco seasoning and cook the beef about 8 minutes until cooked through.

Heat cream cheese in the microwave for about 20-30 seconds so it's soft and easy to stir. Add salsa, sour cream, taco seasoning and cheese and stir to combine. Once the beef is browned, add the beef and combine well.

Place 2-3 tbsp of beef mixture on the lower third of a tortilla, keeping it about 1/2 inch from the edges. Roll it up as tight as you can. If your tortillas are cracking or breaking, you can microwave them for 10-20 seconds with a damp paper towel over top. Once rolled, place seam side down on the baking sheet. Lay all of the taquitos on the baking sheet and make sure they are not touching each other. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle some salt on top. Place pan in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until crisp and the ends start to get golden brown.

You can serve these with guacamole, sour cream or salsa.    The serving size is two taquitos per person which was very filling.  Put a salad on the table and you are good to go!

Brining a turkey--the only way to prepare it! 

(In my opinion!)

This recipe has been a Thanksgiving tradition in our house since 1999.  I was home on maternity leave, awaiting baby #2 who was due 2 weeks after Thanksgiving.  I had a lot of time to watch the food network and Alton Brown talked about brining a turkey.  I thought it was a great idea and my husband thought I was nuts to "test out" this recipe on Thanksgiving when we had 22 people coming to dinner!  I'm sure he was thinking PB&J was going to be the back up plan, but he humored me and got a 5 gallon bucket out for me to brine the turkey.  Turns out, it was the BEST turkey ever!!  Alton knew what he was talking about!  Now every year, Jess gets out the turkey bucket before I can even ask him to!  The leftover turkey is so moist and juicy and makes those day after sandwiches even better!  Here's the recipe:

Brine Solution:
1 cup salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 gallon of vegetable stock (I've used chicken stock and even boullion cubes in a pinch!)
1/2 T pepper
1/2 T all spice
1/2 T ground ginger

  • Combine the above and bring to a boil on the stove until the sugar and salt dissolve.   Let it cool to room temperature.  Combine the cooled brine solution and 1 gallon of ice water in a clean 5 gallon bucket.
  • Place your thawed turkey breast side down  in the bucket and cover.  Keep in a cool area like the basement or garage, overnight.

The next morning:

  • Heat oven to 500 degrees.
  • Rinse turkey and place in roasting pan.  Pat dry.  
  • Add the following into the cavity of the turkey: 
    • 1 apple quartered
    • 1/2 onion quartered
    • rosemary and sage.

  • Rub turkey with canola oil.  Form a double layer of aluminum foil to fit the turkey breast and set aside.  Put turkey into the oven, uncovered for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven, cover breast with the foil and return to the oven with a reduced temperature of 350 degrees.  Roast until the turkey reaches an internal temp of 161 degrees.  A 14-16 pound turkey will take 2- 2 1/2 hours.  Let turkey rest, loosely covered for 15 minutes before carving.


White Lasagne

This is a delicious make ahead dinner!  I put it together last night and then I just popped it in the oven when I got home from school this afternoon.  It was soooo good!!
Ingredients:3 eggs
1 can of evaporated milk
½ cup of milk
2 small containers of ricotta cheese
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 cup (8oz.) sour cream
1 T diced garlic
1 cup chopped broccoli (I used fresh, but frozen would be fine too.)
2 cups cubed cooked ham
½ a box of uncooked lasagna noodles (Aprox. 16)

·         Combine the eggs, evaporated milk, regular milk, ricotta cheese, salt, pepper, sour cream, ham and broccoli into a mixing bowl.
·         Place 1/3 of the creamy ham mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 pan.
·         Cover with a layer of uncooked noodles on top of the ham mixture.
·         Repeat, creating two more layers. 
·         Cover the noodles with the remaining creamy ham sauce. Make sure that the noodles are not sticking out of the sauce. Push them down in so they're fully covered.  I added a layer of shredded cheddar cheese on top, but you could leave it out if you want.
·         Bake (covered) at 350 for 1 hour.  Let it rest for 15 before serving.

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