30 June, 2015

Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Pie

I adapted JL of Shreveport-Bossier recipe and made one pie using a (10-inch) graham cracker crumb crust. I combine the daiquiri mix with the sweetened condensed milk (and next time, will add food color), Then, I fold in half of the whipped topping, and repeat.

Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Pie basic filling ingredients

Pie filling before tinting

Twice, I added this much red food color.

Buy this crust and no need for oven

Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Pie after tinting

Remaining pie filling after one (10-inch) crust

My secret ingredient - - half of one  (4-oz / 113g) bottle
(Normally, I use Gerber, however, Beech-Nut was on sale.)

Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Pie ready to garnish and slice

To garnish, I'll add a fresh strawberry fan (see how-to) and/or dollop of Reddi-Wip (with real cream) to each serving, according to personal preferences.

Serve this pie directly from the freezer.

Peach Daiquiri Bacardi Mixers is also available. I'm guessing it will also make a nice frozen pie. 

How do you adapt this pie recipe? Please tell us below in comments.    

27 June, 2015

Firecracker Salsa | Cherry Home Companion

Firecracker Salsa ingredients (9)
Makes about 1.5 cups
1/2 cup dried tart cherries
1/2 cup cherry, peach, or raspberry jam or preserves
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 cup red onion, chopped
1/2 cup yellow bell pepper, chopped
1/2 fresh jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped, more or less to taste
1 to 2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
Juice of one lime

For serving
Grilled swordfish or
Grilled tuna or
Grilled hamburgers

Firecracker Salsa Directions
Combine dried tart cherries, jam (or preserves) and vinegar in a small microwave-safe bowl; mix well.

Microwave on High (100% power) until hot, about sixty to ninety (60 to 90) seconds. Let stand five (5) minutes.

Then, stir in remaining ingredients (red onion through lime juice).

Cover and refrigerate three to four (3 - 4 hours) or overnight.

Serve with grilled swordfish or tuna. Also excellent as a topping for hamburgers.

Firecracker Salsa Notes

Condiments > F

Page Last Modified 13 June 2016

26 June, 2015

Chocolate-Banana Frozen Pie with Peanut Butter Crust | Cooking Light

Chocolate-Banana Frozen Pie with Peanut Butter Crust ingredients
Makes 8 servings
1.25 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 8 cookie sheets)
1/2 cup honey (divided use)
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
3 cups mashed ripe banana (about 4)
2 cups chocolate low-fat frozen yogurt, softened
8 tsp chocolate syrup

Add 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon while cooking bananas.

Chocolate-Banana Frozen Pie with Peanut Butter Crust directions
Prepare crust
Combine cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup of honey, and peanut butter, stirring well. Press mixture into bottom and up sides of a (9-inch) pie plate. Freeze until set, about twenty (20) minutes.

Cook bananas
Combine remaining 1/4 cup of honey and banana in a large nonstick skillet. Cook over Medium heat until the mixture thickens, about six (6) minutes; stir frequently. Set aside to cool completely.

Prepare pie filling
Place the softened chocolate low-fat frozen yogurt in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer at Medium speed until smooth.

Fold cooled banana mixture into yogurt.

Fill pie crust and freeze
Spoon mixture into crust. Cover and freeze until firm, about four (4) hours.

Drizzle with chocolate syrup just before serving.

Per serving  (one wedge + 1 tsp syrup)
Calories 312 (23% from fat)
Fat 8.1g (sat 2g, mono 3.5g, poly 2.1g)
Protein 7g
Carb 58.2g
Fiber 3.5g
Chol 2mg
Iron 1.5mg
Sodium 169mg
Calc 87mg

Slightly adapts Corvin, Lorrie Hulston. "Cool and creamy." Cooking Light. Time Inc. Aug. 2005. Print. 134.

Dessert > Pie > freezer
peanut butter

Greek Pasta Salad | Weight Watchers® Healthy Life-Style Cookbook

Greek Pasta Salad ingredients (9)
Makes 2 servings
1.5 tsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, halved
1.5 cups cooked thin spaghetti
12 cherry tomatoes, halved
10 small pitted black or Kalamata olives, halved
0.75-oz. feta cheese, crumbled (divided use)
1 Tbsp chopped fresh mint
1/4 tsp grated lemon peel
1/8 tsp ground pepper

Mint sprig(s)

Greek Salad Directions
In a small saucepan, heat olive oil; then, add garlic and cook over Medium heat until lightly browned, about one to two (1 - 2) minutes. Remove and discard garlic; reserve olive oil.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine spaghetti, tomatoes, olives, 0.5-oz. feta cheese, mint, lemon peel, and pepper. Add heated olive oil and toss to coat.

To serve, transfer spaghetti mixture to serving bowl and sprinkle with remaining feta cheese. Garnish with mint sprig(s).

Per serving
Calories 221
Protein 6g
Fat 9g
Carbohydrate 29g
Calcium 89mg
Sodium 241mg
Cholesterol 9 mg
Dietary fiber 2g

Weight Watchers® International, Inc. Weight Watchers®  Healthy Life-Style Cookbook (New York: New American Library, 1990), 242.

Weight Watchers

Texas Caviar | JL Celebration Cookbook

For this Texas Caviar recipe, I substituted light agave nectar in the Marinade for the granulated sugar used in the original Junior League recipe. I use overstrike  (like this) below to denote changes I made to the original ingredient quantities or substitutions.

Texas Caviar (adapted)

Texas Caviar ingredients
Makes about 3-quarts / 2.8-liters
About forty (2.4-oz) appetizer servings
3/4 cup (6-oz US) apple cider vinegar Rosemary-Thyme-Jalapeño Red Wine Vinegar
1 Tbsp water fresh lime juice
+ 1/4 tsp lime zest
If needed, + 1 Tbsp white wine vinegar (7% acidity) to increase tartness
1/2 cup (4-oz US) vegetable oil extra virgin olive oil
1 cup sugar (1 Tbsp + 1 tsp) Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Blue Agave, Light 
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly-ground Lemon Pepper

1 (15-oz / 425g) can pinto beans
1 (15-oz / 425g) can garbanzo beans
1 (15-oz / 425g) can black beans
1 (15-oz / 425g) can (12- to 16-oz) bag frozen black-eyed peas, defrosted and drained well
2 (11-oz) cans shoepeg corn, 2 (15.25-oz/432g) cans golden sweet whole kernel corn
2 (4-oz) cans diced green chiles, drained 1/2 to 1 seeded and finely chopped fresh jalapeño pepper, reserving some seeds for increasing heat intensity, as desired 
1 (2-oz) jar finely chopped pimiento, drained
1 cup finely chopped green orange or red bell pepper, about one medium 
1 cup finely chopped celery organic celery, about five stalks
1 small 1 cup finely chopped sweet red onion, about half of one large

Red cabbage leaves, cleaned and core removed, to line serving dish
Green onion tops and/or 
Small-diced fresh avocado for the top center of the dish and
Lemon juice for dipping the avocado to prevent it from browning

For serving
Tortilla chips or scoop chips

Texas Caviar Directions
Prepare the Marinade
In a saucepan, combine all of the Marinade ingredients and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat and set aside to cool to room temperature.

Combine Dip and refrigerate for twenty-four hours
Drain and rinse each can of beans and corn under cold water. In a large colander, drain all well.

In a large bowl, combine all of the Dip ingredients.

Texas Caviar legumes combined (except for Black-Eyed Peas I forgot)

Texas Caviar aromatics

Texas Caviar before adding the Marinade

Pour over the cooled Marinade and toss well to coat.

Cover and chill for twenty-four (24) hours for the flavors to mingle with one another. For tips about marinading in a ziploc plastic bag, see Notes below.

Drain, garnish and serve
If desired, use a slotted spoon to transfer the Texas Caviar to a glass bowl or shallow dish lined with red cabbage leaves. Refrigerate the reserved Marinade. 

If you choose to garnish further, add the chopped scallion tops and/or diced fresh avocado at the last minute before serving with tortilla chips.

Refrigerate unused portions
Add back any reserved Marinade to the Texas Caviar before covering and refrigerating unused portions. 

Adapted Texas Caviar without draining Marinade before serving

Adapts the Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc., The Junior League Celebration Cookbook: A Treasury of the 400 Most Requested Recipes from Junior League Cookbooks (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2000), 36. Previously, the recipe appeared in Junior League of Wheeling, Inc.Treat Yourself to the Best Cookbook (Wheeling: Junior League of Wheeling, Inc., 1989). [Page unknown.]     Back to Top

Texas Caviar Notes
Any pools of Marinade in green and white bowl photos result from an incident where I forgot to buy black-eyed peas which would have added about another 1.5- to 2-cups of solids. 

In the Marinade, I use less of the agave nectar light to substitute for one cup of granulated sugar than the 2/3 cup (10.5+ Tbsp) suggested on the company's website. I like the balance of flavors in the modified Marinade. 

If you use more agave nectar, be sure to reduce other liquids in the recipe as suggested via the company's web site.

I have substituted one (15-oz / 425g) can of organic cannellini beans for the garbanzo beans; I prefer the garbanzo in this recipe.

Next time I will use frozen black-eyed peas (defrosted). 

For canned chilies. I will occasionally use one (4-oz / 113g) can Ortega Hot Fire Roasted Diced Green Chile Peppersdrained and chopped into smaller pieces, instead of my preferred fresh jalapeño pepper. For us, one (4-oz) can of the hot chile peppers is plenty.

Without the black-eyed peas, here's a photo of just the other legumes and shoepeg corn for purposes of considering the color impact of substitutions.

Texas Caviar legumes 
(Even after making a special trip, I forgot to buy Black-Eyed Peas!)

For example, I made a batch of this recipe using red kidney beans because I thought I would like the additional color; however, I will not do that again because, in my opinion, the kidney bean looked out of place in this dish. I think the kidney beans are too large and do not contribute any significant flavor improvement.

I chose an orange bell pepper because I was omitting the pimento and the orange bell peppers were on sale. Since the fresh jalapeño pepper and celery are both finely diced, however, I think green, red, or orange bell pepper add nice color to this recipe.

Texas Caviar marinating before serving

After combining all of the ingredients I spoon them into a resealable heavy-duty plastic bag to make it easier to redistribute the Marinade. Just turn the bag over several times during the twenty-four (24) hour rest time in the refrigerator.     Back to Top

Resealable bag of Texas Caviar inside two grocery bags

Then, I place the resealable bag inside two plastic grocery bags and lay the bundle flat inside a (9- x 13-inch) baking pan because this arrangement provides additional protection from possible spills or punctures, and facilitates lifting.     Back to Top

Adapts the Association of Junior Leagues International, Inc., The Junior League Celebration Cookbook: A Treasury of the 400 Most Requested Recipes from Junior League Cookbooks (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2000), 37. Previously, the recipe appeared in Junior League of Wheeling, Inc.Treat Yourself to the Best Cookbook (Wheeling: Junior League of Wheeling, Inc., 1989), 36.  Back to Top

black beans
garbanzo beans
pinto beans

Page Last Modified 13 May 2016

25 June, 2015

Cherries Jubilee Ice Cream Pie | Cooking Light

Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner via Cooking Light

Cherries Jubilee Ice Cream Pie ingredients
Makes 8 servings
Cherry Sauce
1/3 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
2 Tbsp brandy
1 (12-oz) package frozen pitted dark sweet cherries

2 Tbsp butter, melted
2 Tbsp honey
1.5 cups graham cracker crumbs (about nine cookie sheets)

4 cups vanilla low-fat ice cream, softened

Cherries Jubilee Ice Cream Pie Directions
Get ready
Assemble ingredients. Rearrange freezer contents as may be needed to provide level surface for freezing the pie.

Preheat oven to 375°F. (Disregard this step if you substitute a Ready-Crust®.)

Prepare cherry sauce
In a medium saucepan, combine the first five (5) ingredients (through cherries) and bring to a boil. Then, cook until thick, about two (2) minutes; stir constantly. Cool completely.

Prepare crust
In a medium bowl, combine butter and honey. Add graham cracker crumbs, stirring to blend. Press mixture into bottom and up sides of a (9-inch) pie plate. Bake at 375°F for eight (8) minutes. Cool completely.

Prepare pie filling
Place 1/2 cup cooled cherry mixture in a food processor; process until smooth. Place the remaining cherry mixture in an airtight container; cover and chill.

In a large bowl, use a mixer at Medium speed to beat the softened ice cream until smooth. Add puréed cherry mixture, and gently fold in to achieve a swirl pattern.

Fill the pie and freeze until firm
Spoon mixture into the cooled crust. Cover and freeze until firm, about four (4) hours.

Top with reserved cherry sauce just before serving.

Cover and return any remaining pie to freezer.

Per serving (one pie wedge + 3 Tbsp sauce)
Calories 277 (23% from fat)
Fat 7g (sat 3.4g, mono 2.4g, poly 0.8g)
Protein 5g
Carb 47.3g
Fiber 1.6g
Chol 24mg
Iron 0.7g
Sodium 165mg
Calc 88mg

Cherries Jubilee Ice Cream Pie Notes
  • Corvin, Lorrie Hulston. "Cool and creamy." Cooking Light. Time Inc. Aug. 2005. Print. 132.

Dessert > Pies > freezer

Page Last  Modified 13 June 2016

23 June, 2015

Balsamic Black Bean Salsa / Salad

This post contains one recipe for Balsamic Black Bean Salsa, which can also double as a cold salad. Make this recipe ahead to give the flavors time to blend.

Black Bean Salsa ingredients 
Note: I underestimated the cilantro and actually used 2x amount shown above. 

Balsamic Black Bean Salsa ingredients (10)
Makes 1-quart or
About 10 (1/2 cup) servings 
8-ozs Herdez® Salsa Verde (1 cup; half of one 16-oz / 453g bottle)
Zest from one-half of a lime
Juice from one lime
1/2 tsp ground cumin
2-ozs balsamic vinegar (1/4 cup)

1 (15-oz / 439g) can black beans, drained and rinsed well
2 cups roasted sweet corn (I defrost one (16-oz / 453g) bag frozen Birds Eye® Pure & Simple Sweet Kernel Corn and roast using Chef Bayless' oven method here)
1/2 medium onion
1 garlic clove
Fresh cilantro leaves (from about 35 stems), rinsed and patted dry

For serving
As dip, baked crackers or tortilla chips
As salad, washed, dry lettuce leaves or greens

Fresh cilantro sprigs or mild chili pepper wheel

Balsamic Black Bean Salsa Directions
Prepare marinade
In a small bowl, whisk together all of the marinade ingredients and set aside.

Prepare salsa base
Dice the onion (yield about 1/3 cup). 

Mince the garlic.

Dice the cilantro (yield about 1/2 cup).

In a covered medium bowl, combine all of the salsa base ingredients. Pour over the marinade and toss to distribute throughout. 

Refrigerate before serving
Cover and let Balsamic Black Bean Salsa rest in refrigerator at least four (4) hours, preferably overnight, to allow flavors to blend. 

To serve as dip, bring to room temperature and serve with baked chips or crackers, or tortilla chips.

To serve as salad, spoon onto lettuce leaves or greens and garnish with a fresh cilantro sprig or a mild chili wheel. I prefer serving cold as a salad.

Cover and refrigerate any unused portions.

Balsamic Black Bean Salsa after resting in refrigerator

Balsamic Black Bean Salsa Notes
  • I enjoy serving this dish as both a salsa or as a cold salad. For variation, I'll probably try adding 1 to 1.5 cups crumbled feta cheese when serving as a salad or in a sandwich using these wraps

  • After trying several different brands of frozen and canned corn, I prefer the Birds Eye® Pure & Simple Sweet Kernel Corn in this recipe. At this writing, the Birds Eye® (16-oz) bag costs less per unit than (14-oz) bag of the store brand frozen golden corn. 
Using the nutrition info on each of those packages, and for the same 2/3 cup serving size, the Birds Eye® has 80 calories vs. 100 store brand; the primary difference is carbohydrates of 14g vs. 21g store brand. Birds Eye® contains 2g dietary fiber and 6g sugar vs. 1g and 5g, respectively, of the store brand.

22 June, 2015

No-Bake Peach Pie

Photo: Dana Gallagher for Cooking Light

No-Bake Peach Pie ingredients
Makes 10 servings
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs, about 5 cookie sheets (see Notes below)
1/4 tsp salt (divided use)
1 Tbsp unsalted butter
3.5-ozs white chocolate, finely chopped
Cooking spray

Cream Cheese Filling
5-ozs 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed

Peach Filling/Topping
2 Tbsp seedless peach spread
1 Tbsp peach schnapps
1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
3 medium soft and juicy peaches (even slightly overripe), peeled, pitted and cut into 1/2-inch wedges

No-Bake Peach Pie Directions
Prepare crust
Place crumbs and 1/8 tsp salt in a food processor; process until combined.

Place butter and chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on High setting thirty (30) seconds; then, stir until chocolate is smooth.

Add melted chocolate to processor; pulse until combined. Press mixture into bottom and up sides of a (9-inch) pie plate coated with cooking spray. Freeze until set, about twenty (20) minutes.

Prepare cream cheese filling
Place cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla in a medium bowl; beat with a mixer at Medium speed until smooth. Gently fold in whipped topping. Carefully spread filling over bottom of pie crust.

Prepare peaches
Place fruit spread in a large microwave-safe bowl; microwave on High setting until bubbly, about thirty (30) seconds.

Stir in the remaining 1/8 tsp salt, the schnapps, and lemon juice. Add peach wedges; toss to combine. Chop some of this filling and spoon it into the cream cheese filling.

Arrange remaining peach wedges over pie.

Refrigerate and serve
Cover and chill three (3) hours before serving.

Per serving (one wedge of original recipe)
Calories 195
Fat 8.3g (sat 4.6g. mono 2.3g, poly 1g)
Protein 3g
Carb 27g
Fiber 1g
Chol 16mg
Iron zero mg
Sodium 155mg
Calc 41g

No-Bake Peach Pie Notes

  • Test it: Replace vanilla extract with almond extract.

  • Test it: Brandy firm, fresh peaches. Then, substitute Peach Brandy or Southern Comfort for the peach schnapps and the Brandied Peaches for the overripe ones in the Peach Filling.

  • Slightly adapts Grimes, Julianna. "2 Sides to Every Peach." Cooking Light. Time Inc. Aug. 2014. Print. 100.

Dessert > Booze & wine
Dessert > Pie > fridge

Page Last Modified 27 June 2016

21 June, 2015

Redo: Frozen Coconut Pie

Frozen Coconut Pie with minimal thawing

Frozen Coconut Pie with Toasted Salted Coconut

Frozen Coconut Pie with Toasted Salted Coconut ingredients (7 + 1 optional)
Makes one (9-inch) pie or about 8 - 10 servings
1 tsp Agave In The Raw® organic sweetener (check for coupons here)
1/2 cup Silk® Unsweetened Coconut Milk
1 (3-oz) pkg. store brand Neufchâtel cheese, softened
1+1/3 cups store brand sweetened coconut flakes
1 (8-oz / 226g) container Bird's Eye® Fat Free Cool Whip Non-Dairy Whipped Topping, thawed
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 (9-inch) Keebler® Ready-Crust® Chocolate Pie Crust

Optional garnish
One batch of Toasted Salted Coconut

Frozen Coconut Pie with Toasted Salted Coconut directions
Get ready
Check freezer space and rearrange as may be necessary to have room to freeze (9-inch) pie so that it is level.

Assemble ingredients. If preparing optional Toasted Salted Coconut, preheat oven to 350ºF.

Prepare pie filling
In a a large bowl, use a hand mixer to beat agave and and Coconut Milk into the Neufchâtel cheese. Start on Low speed so that the ingredients don't fly out of the bowl; then, increase speed gradually to beat mixture until it is smooth, adding the almond extract as you go.

Stir in the coconut, breaking apart any clumps.

Incorporate the Cool Whip®
Fold the Cool Whip® topping gently into the  mixture. Do not stir; fold. I start with half of the Cool Whip® topping. Spoon into Ready-Crust Pie Crust, gently nudging to the edge and then, smooth the top.

Cover pie (the store-bought crust comes with a handy top you can flip over for this purpose; see photo at end of this recipe) and freeze until firm, about four (4) hours.

Toast coconut
If using this optional garnish, prepare and cool Toasted Salted Coconut (photo below) while the pie is freezing,

Garnish and serve
Remove pie from freezer and let stand at room temperature about fifteen (15) minutes (or longer for softer texture) before cutting. Garnish slices with Toasted Salted Coconut (if using) and serve.

Cover and store any remaining servings in the freezer.

Frozen Coconut Pie with softer texture after longer defrost

Frozen Coconut Pie with top from Keebler® Ready-Crust® to return to freezer

Undo the Frozen Coconut Pie redo?

Frozen Coconut Pie with Hershey's Chocolate Syrup

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Dessert > Pies > frozen
Recipe Redo

Page Last Modified 29 June 2015

20 June, 2015

Toasted Salted Coconut

Toasted Salted Coconut

Toasted Salted Coconut ingredients (2)
Makes about 1/2 cup
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1/4 tsp kosher salt

Toasted Salted Coconut directions
Preheat oven to 350ºF.

On a rimmed baking sheet, toss coconut with the kosher salt.

Spread coconut evenly on the baking sheet. (I used aluminum foil in case the coconut burned. It did not.)

Coconut, salted, and ready for oven

Toast coconut in preheated 350ºF oven, stirring frequently, until golden brown. Ovens vary so check.

Mine was ready in four minutes (see photo at top of post); however, according to Martha Stewart (click to see recipe), toasting may take eight to ten (8 to 10) minutes. In The Dinner Doctor (page 477), Anne Byrn says golden brown takes seven (7) minutes.

Let cool; then cover and store until needed.

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Frozen Coconut Pie


Page Last Modified 11 July 2015

19 June, 2015

Bourbon Ice Cream | Fiesta

This Bourbon Ice Cream recipe from the Junior League of Corpus Christi, Inc. uses store-bought ice cream plus several add-ins for an adult dessert.

Bourbon Ice Cream ingredients (4)
Makes 0.5-gallon (2-quarts), 
or about 5 (12.0-ozs. / 3 scoops each) servings
0.5-gallon vanilla ice cream
1.5 cups chopped pecans, lightly toasted
1 (10-oz) jar maraschino cherries, cut and drained
(1 cup / 8-oz.) bourbon

Bourbon Ice Cream Directions
Soften ice cream. Quickly stir in other ingredients.

Refreeze in the ice cream container(s).

Junior League of Corpus Christi, Inc. Fiesta: Favorite Recipes of South Texas. Ed. Mrs. Lev H. Pritchard, III and Mrs. William N. Woolsey. (Corpus Christi: Junior League of Corpus Christi, Inc, 1973), 281.

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Dessert > Ice cream / sorbet

Page Last Modified 19 May 2016

16 June, 2015


This post contains two recipes for Nachos.

  • Nachos - BHG Mexican Cook Book (1977)

  • Nachos - Fiesta (1973)

While I cannot attest to the Mexican authenticity of this recipe, this dish is almost identical to the nachos Ruby Tuesday, Inc. used to serve in the late 1970s and early 1980s, which we enjoyed copying at home (at a very young age, of course).

Nachos ingredients (3)
Size quantity as desired
Tortilla chips 
Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese
Canned green chili peppers, rinsed and seeded

Circa late 1970s, we used a box of Velveeta® Pasteurized Process Cheese Spread (because it melts so well) and 1 - 2 (4-oz) cans of sliced jalapeño peppers (hot or mild, according to personal preference), with the seeds. On each chip, we placed a strip or square of Velveeta® and one or more jalapeño slices per chip. To increase the heat, we added some of the brine from the jalapeño peppers -- not too much, though, because you want the Velveeta® to melt, not burn in splotches.  

Preheat oven to 400ºF.
Nachos Directions
Spread tortilla chips in a single layer on an ovenproof plate or baking sheet. (We mounded on pizza pan or Teflon® cookie sheet.) 

Cut cheese in 3/4- x 3/4- x 1/4-inch pieces. (We sliced the Velveeta® and then cut in half.)

Cut chile peppers in strips. (We used sliced jalapeño peppers.) 

Place a piece of cheese on each chip and top with a strip of chili pepper. (We used one or more slice per chip.)

Bake in 400ºF oven until cheese melts, about five (5) minutes. Serve hot.

Better Homes & Gardens Books. Better Homes & Gardens Mexican Cook Book. Ed. Nancy Morton. (Des Moines, 1977), 26.

We also used tortilla chips to make Nachos like this. We place overlapping mound on a pizza pan (first apartment), or on a smaller pan to fit inside a toaster oven in the dorms.

Nachos ingredients (4)
Size quantity as desired
Refried beans 
Grated Cheddar cheese
Sliced pickled jalapeño peppers

Nachos Directions
For appetizers, cut tortillas into quarters before frying. Otherwise, leave whole. Fry tortillas until crisp. Then, spread with refried beans and sprinkle with grated cheese. Top with with sliced jalapeño peppers and broil until cheese melts. Serve hot. An excellent accompaniment to beer. 

Junior League of Corpus Christi, Inc. Fiesta: Favorite Recipes of South Texas. Ed. Mrs. Lev H. Pritchard, III and Mrs. William N. Woolsey. (Corpus Christi: Junior League of Corpus Christi, Inc, 1973), 13.

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Page Last Modified 18 May 2016

15 June, 2015

Redo: Pat's Chicken Casserole

This recipe updates one of Pat's favorite chicken casserole recipes which she received from the mother of one of her friends and shared with us in about 1979 (+/- 2 years). This redo reduces sodium and fat by swapping lower sodium and fat free versions of two of the ingredients, and rinsing a third (canned mushrooms). While I have not tried it yet, I suspect one could also sub Greek yogurt for the fat free sour cream.

Redo: Pat's Chicken Casserole

Redo: Pat's Chicken Casserole ingredients (6)
Makes about 6 servings
1 small (3-lbs.) store-bought rotisserie chicken (*See notes - there may be extra.)
1 can reduced sodium condensed cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
1 (8-oz) container fat-free sour cream
1 (4-oz) can sliced mushrooms, drained, rinsed, and drained 
Ground white pepper, to taste
1 pkg Pepperidge Farm® Herb Seasoned Stuffing (* See notes - there will be extra.)

Redo: Pat's Chicken Casserole directions
Get ready
Remove skin from chicken and discard; then, carve (for step-by-step links click here). Cut chicken into bite-size pieces and set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine soup, sour cream, and mushrooms; mix thoroughly and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Lightly apply a coat of vegetable oil cooking spray to the inside of the baking dish and set aside.

Casserole ingredients ready to assemble 
(Yes, that's recycled Fat Free Cool Whip container holding the soup mixture.)

Assemble casserole layers
Place chicken into the bottom of the baking dish. Season with pepper.

Spoon soup mixture onto casserole. Spread evenly to the edge to cover chicken.

Top by spreading Pepperidge Farm® Herb Stuffing evenly over soup mixture.

Bake and serve
Cover casserole dish, and bake in preheated 350ºF oven for fifty (50) minutes. Since ovens vary, you might wish to check sooner.

Remove casserole cover; then, bake until the top is lightly browned and crispy, but not burned. This takes no more than an additional ten (10) minutes.

Remove from oven to wire rack for five to ten (5 - 10) minutes to set before serving warm.

Redo: Pat's Chicken Casserole notes
I have used both 13- x 9- x 2-inch rectangular baking dish covered with foil and an oval 2.8L (almost 3-quarts) CorningWare® covered casserole. The original recipe was created long before rotisserie chickens were readily available, so if you have time and the inclination to cook a (3-lbs.) chicken, go right ahead. 

If you buy a rotisserie chicken, however, in my limited experience, their size is often larger (4- to 5.0-lbs.) than called for in this recipe. So, you will probably have some extra rotisserie chicken for another use (like Chicken Strawberry Salad, Hawaiian Chicken Salad, Oriental Chicken Pasta Salad, or some dip), or you can add it to the casserole, in which case I would increase the soup mixture. I have used canned chunk chicken breast packed in water, rinsed, but I didn't scale the recipe well. I used only one (12.5-oz) can, which was inadequate, even though I reduced the pan size, too.

Near the holidays, Costco usually sells large (3-lbs.) boxes of Pepperidge Farm® Herb Dressing, which keep well, at least in my experience. I secure the top of the packets and then place inside a resealable plastic bag to prevent any accidental spills. For this recipe, I use about two-thirds (2/3) of (either 1-lb. or a 14-oz) package, depending upon the size of the baking dish.  

You might like
Pat's Chicken Casserole (original from Mrs. W.)

For extra chicken, you might like
Chicken Strawberry Salad
Hawaiian Chicken Salad
Oriental Chicken Pasta Salad
or some dip

Recipe Redo

Page Last Modified 17 June 2015