Heather’s Pineapple Chicken Salad

PINEAPPLE CHICKEN
2 chicken breasts
1/2 cup of fresh cut pineapple
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
Pepper
1/4 cup of chopped onion

SALAD
Mixed greens
1 chopped tomato
3 chopped carrots
1 chopped orange pepper
1 cup chopped pineapple
1/2 cup shredded cheese
Handful of chopped mushrooms
Handful of chopped onions
3 hard boil eggs/ chopped up

DIRECTIONS: Start with Pineapple Chicken, so that it cooks while your preparing the salad. Take your half cup of pineapple and mash it up, then pour it into a medium size sauce pan. Put the 2 tablespoons of brown sugar, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, a little pepper, 1/4 cup of chopped onions and turn on low heat- stirring occasionally. Cut your chicken into small pieces (removing all the fat in the process) Put the chicken into the sauce pan. Let cook on medium heat for about 15-18 minutes (you check the chicken by cutting a piece open to make sure its thoroughly cooked. Then drain the liquid out of the saucepan and put the chicken atop the salad. (Can serve with chicken hot or cold)

Chop up all the stuff for your salad, including the greens. There are many ways you can serve this, either as a side at a potluck or large event as it could serve small portions to 10 people OR you can serve it as the main dish- makes 3 large salads.

If serving as main entree, start with the lettuce greens and sprinkle the rest of the stuff on the greens as you chop it for a nice display of color. Cheese, hard boiled eggs, pineapple and chicken should go on last. You can add croutons and serve with your favorite bread.

BROWN RICE & QUINOA STIR FRY

Package of brown rice & quinoa
2 chicken breasts
2 eggs
2 cups of chopped broccoli
2 cups of chopped carrots
1/4 cup of chopped onion
2 cups of chopped cauliflower
1 cup of chopped fresh green beans
1 cups of chopped snow peas
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup of canola oil (can use any type of oil)
3 tablespoons of butter Pepper & Salt
1/4 cup of soy sauce
2 tablespoons of brown sugar

DIRECTIONS: Chop the chicken into small pieces and cook in a skillet on medium heat. Season with salt and pepper. Flip chicken until cooked thoroughly. Make the brown rice and quinwa mix, follow the instructions on the box. (You can make this from scratch, but to save time the box mixture tastes great and is simple)

In another skillet, crack and beat the 2 eggs and turn on medium heat. Add oil to the pan, let the eggs sit until they are almost cooked all the way through, then flip it over. When its done, take it out of skillet, put on cutting board and let cool. Then chop it up and put it aside to add to the mixture in the end.

In a large sauce pan add butter, oil, chopped garlic, onions, salt, pepper, soy sauce and brown sugar; turn on low heat. Mix together and let simmer while you chop all the vegetables. Then put the vegetables in the large sauce pan and stir so that the liquid mixture glazes all of them. Cook for about 10 min on medium heat, stirring occasionally.

Then pour the cooked rice & quinoa, cooked chicken and chopped eggs in with the vegetables and mix together. Keep on medium heat stirring occasionally for 5 minutes. Then serve and enjoy! You can put Soy Sauce on the table so people can add more according to their liking!

4TH of JULY- RED VELVET CAKE POP’S

Cake Pops are a delicious dessert, that can transform a simple past time into a festive holiday treat! Lets keep it super simple, by buying a box of your favoriate cake mix. (Get Betty Crocker or Duncan Hines – you can actually taste the difference in the end the result!) If your favoriate is vanilla, but the holiday is fourth of July you can add red or blue food coloring to the cake mix to make it extra festive. Red velvet, chocolate, marble and confettie cake are all great options too!

What you will need:
*1 Box of Betty Crocker or Duncan Hignes cake mix
1 - 12 Ounce container of icing (what ever flavor you want)
1 - 12 Ounce bag of melting candies
2 Teaspoons of shorting (DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP)
40-60 Round edge popcycle sticks
1 Large square piece of styrofoam
Food coloring (if your wanting to create extra colors)
Anything extra you want to decorate the pops with (ie, sprinkles, sugar crystals, candies, etc)

 *Normally a box cake calls for 3 eggs, 1 1/4cups of vegitable oil & water
Melting candies and white rounded edge popcycle sticks can be purchased at a store like ‘Micheal’s Crafts’ They come in lots of different colors, although if you want to save money you can get the white ones and add food coloring. So you get a few colors out of one bag of white ‘melting candies’

DIRECTIONS: First you want to make the cake the mixture (follow the box), let it cook and cool. After its cooled for about 30 minutes, get a large bowl and break up the entire cake into a bunch of crumbs. If any of the outside edges of the cake are hard or burned, throw them away.

Now take your container of icing and pour the entire container into the crumb mixture, dont worry if you are using ‘cream cheese icing’ in red velvet cake, the icing will not be visable. Mix this together with your hands until all is mixed together. Then your going to scoop out a small amount of the batter (can use a mini ice cream scooper or spoon- to measure the amount) Roll it in your hands to form the perfect ball and place it on a wax covered cookie sheet. After all the balls are complete, put it in the freezer for about 15-30 minutes.

Take your ‘Melting Candies’ and put them in a microwaveable bowl and put them in the microwave. Put them on defrost for about 30 seconds, take out and stir well. Put back in for another 20 seconds and take out to stir. You can keep doing this until the candies are completely melted and simply running off the spoon. The mixture will probably be a bit thick, add a teaspoon of shortening to the mixture and stir in well. This will thin it out, if its still a little on the thick side, add another teaspoon.

Now get your cake balls out of the freezer and take your pop sticks and dip about an inch of the top of the stick into the chocolate mixture (aka ‘melted candies’) and then insert about half way into the cake ball. Set back on the cookie tray to dry.

After they are all dry, your going to want to take each cake pop and dip it entirely into the chocolate mixture and then shake it gently to get the excess off. This is when you push the stick into your styrofoam square to hold it til it dries. Then you can decorate with other colored icings. If you choose to decorate only with sprinkles or candies, I suggest you add these while the chocolate mixture is still wet on the cake balls.

If you pour a bit of sprinkles or colored sugar crystals onto a plate you can gently roll the cake pop in it after you dip in the chocolate mixture. Or even sprinkle all around it, because the mixture is wet it will stick and dry hard.

Once these are dry,  you can wrap them up to searve individually or create a fun display for a party. They do not need to be refridgerated after they are complete!

 

GRANDMA PORTUGAL’S SPANISH RICE

1 Cup rice
2 Cups water
1 Can tomato sauce
2 1/2 Teaspoons of chicken bouillon
1/4 Cup vegetable oil

DIRECTIONS: First add vegetable oil into the skillet, you want enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan.  On medium heat, add in 1 cup of dry brown rice and make sure to mix it up so that all the rice gets covered with a bit of oil.  As the rice turns brown, add in your can of tomato sauce. You want to make sure that all the rice has been covered with the sauce.  As the sauce begins to cook, it will start to have the look of bubble craters in the rice and sauce, when this happens you want to turn the stove top down to a low heat. Then in a separate container you add 2 1/2 teaspoons of chicken bouillon with 2 cups of warm water. Stir it up well. Then pour about a 3rd of the water mixture into the rice and cover. Wait about 7-10 minutes and add another 3rd of the water mixture. Wait another 7-10 minutes and add the last of the water mixture. Then turn the heat off and let the rice sit for about 15 minutes. You can take the lid off the rice, fluff it up and add any other seasonings to your liking.

*When Chris’s “Grandma Portugal” used to make this dish for the family, she stuck with the old Mexican tradition and used lard instead of oil.

CHRIS’S RICE PILAF

1 Cup of rice
2 Cups water
1 Quarter of first layer of an onion
1 Whole clove
1 Bay leaf
1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil

DIRECTIONS: First add vegetable oil into the skillet, you want enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Turn the heat onto medium temperature and when it starts to get warm, add your cup of rice. You want to mix it around so that all the rice is covered by oil and let it sit to warm. While this is warming take one onion and peel the skin off of it and then peel back the first layer of the onion and cut a quarter of it off. You will take your whole clove and put it on top of your bay leaf and under the bay leaf is your onion slice. You will now push down with the clove so that it goes through the bay leaf and into the onion, sort of pinning it all together. Add 2 cups of water to the rice mixture. Then put the onion, clove, bay leaf into the rice mixture and try to position it so that the rice is on top of this. This will allow the flavors to cook out and rise up into the rice.  Bring it to a slight boil, then put it in a pan and place it in the oven at 350 for 15 minutes. Pull it out, fluff the rice and add salt to your liking.

EZRA’S WHOLE WHEAT PANCAKES

2 eggs
2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
2 cups Buttermilk
4 tbsp Brown Sugar
4 tbsp Olive Oil
2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Soda
2 tbsp Cinnamon
2 tbsn Vanilla
1/2 cup *Chopped Walnuts

Directions: Start by mixing the egg, buttermilk, olive oil and vanilla in a seperate bowl. Then in a bigger bowl mix the whole wheat flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda and cinnamon.  Pour the ingrediants from the first bowl into the second and mix until smooth, then stir in the *walnuts.  Put a skillet on the stove over meduim heat (if using a non stick pan, no grease is required) Pour about a forth cup onto the skillet for each pancake. Cook approximately 1 -2 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Makes 10 medium sized pancakes!*Walnuts can be substituted for other nuts, chocolate chips or your favorate berries. Top them off with butter and pure maple syrup then enjoy! Makes for not only a deliscious and fun but healthy Saturday morning breakfast around the kitchen table with the family!

This recipe was created by Ezra Suko after recently relocating to sunny Southern California, after his time in the military and away from his family. He wanted to create something that reminded him of home and what better way to do that than recreating a Saturday morning favoriate for him and seven of his siblings. Ezra Suko is a phenominal fine art landscape oil painter who has fine tuned the craft of creating a master piece on canvas and is also learning to use his creativity in the kitchen! You can check out his art work at www.EzraSuko.com Thank you for sharing this recipe with us!

MOTHER LIKE DAUGHTER CUP CAKES

1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 cup cream
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

DIRECTIONS: In making these cakes, sweet cream or sour cream may be used. If the sour cream is used, use ½ teaspoon soda and 1 teaspoon baking powder. Should chocolate cakes be desired, deduct 1/3 cup flower and add 1/3 cup cocoa and 1 tablespoon extra sugar.

Sift flour, baking powder and salt several times. Cream sugar and eggs thoroughly. Add cream and flour and stir thoroughly until very lights and fluffy. Fill cups two-thirds full and bake. Preheat the oven – Bake at 375 – 20 to 30 minutes

CHOCOLATE FROSTING
2 ounces of chocolate
1/3 cups milk or cream
3 tablespoons butter
3 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar
1/3 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

DIRECTIONS: Melt 2 ounces of chocolate. Scold 1/3 cups milk or cream, with 3 tablespoon butter. Remove from heat; add 3 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar, all at once, 1/3 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat. Add Chocolate. Beat until thick. Spread. (You can thin the icing with a few drops of cream)

 *This recipe is an ode to my Grandmother Joyce.  She had a way of turning a bad day good and a making good day great. Her love, wisdom and grace was the perfect recipe for living and loving in life. This was one of her personal recipes from “Angels in the Kitchen” By Joyce Rogers Emert, a collective book of our family recipes. She put this book together because she said, “When I think of all the care and love you’ve given to your loved ones and friends by providing meals and goodies, practically all the days of your lives, I just feel you deserve such honor.”  To Gramma Joyce, I thank you for honoring us all!

GRANNY NOVA’S HAMBURGER CASSEROLE

2 ½ pounds of ground beef
1 cup of diced bell pepper
½ cup of diced onion
1 can of corn (drained)
1 can of kidney beans (drained)
1 pack of Mexican rice
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of pepper
1 small can of tomato sauce
1 cup of grated cheese

DIRECTIONS: First put the hamburger meat in a large skillet on turn on medium heat. Dice the bell pepper and onion and mix into the meat. Add the salt and pepper (add more if desired for flavor) In a separate skillet make the Mexican rice (you can make this from scratch if you desire or purchase a pack that already has the Mexican flavors in it) When the rice is finished add it to the meat along with the corn, kidney beans and tomato sauce. When the meat is finished cooking and all ingredients are well mixed together (this takes about 30 minutes for all the ingredients to fully blend by cooking). You can pour the mixture into a baking dish and pour your grated cheese over the top and place on the top rack in the oven. Cook on 325 for 15 minutes.

Granny Nova was my grandmother on my mom’s side and was mother of five children.  Always with a full house, that smelled of the most delicious treats and meals.  She would cook with vegetables, fresh from her garden out back.  Helping her harvest was so much fun because at dinner time when I’d see what she cooked I’d always get really excited and ask, “Are these the things from the garden?”  She’d laugh and answer, “Yes!”  Cooking and growing your own vegetables is a great way to have family time combined with healthy eating.  Thanks to her I got to learn all about it at an early age.  To Granny Nova I thank you for taking the time to teach me tips in the kitchen and the secrets of her garden.

FAMILY TIME PANCAKES

1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
2 cups soy flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups milk
2 eggs – beaten well
2 tablespoons oil

DIRECTIONS: First mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Then mix the milk, eggs and oil together in a separate bowl, slowly pour the dry ingredients in and mix together. Mix until the batter is not clumpy. If you are cooking on a skillet, turn the stove to medium heat, drop a little butter into the pan so the batter does not stick and pour half a cup of batter onto the skillet for each pancake. As the batter begins to cook, small bubble holes will form at the top of the pancake, when the top half is covered in them, it is safe to flip the pancake. You can test the pancake to see if it is completely done cooking by sticking a fork into the center of it, if you pull it out and no batter is stuck to the fork they are finished. **This is a thick batter, so you can add a few tablespoons of water or milk if thinner batter is desired. Both tasty and nutritious!
*This recipe is a family favorite from my mom, Karla Shrake. Eating meals she made in the kitchen always created a sense of warmth and compassion, a time for us as a family to unite. I often describe her as “Super Mom” because she is not just a mom but a doctor, a counselor, a chef, a confidant, a mentor and my best friend. She showed me how to mix a lil love into the recipe that is life, by loving us all unconditionally. To my mom, I thank you!

MONSIEUR BON BONS SECRET FUDGE

1 lb. granulated sugar
1 small can evaporated milk
¼ lb butter
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon corn syrup
4 tablespoons unsweetened chocolate

DIRECTIONS: Put all the ingredients into a sauce pan. Melt slowly on low heat until the mixture thickens slightly and becomes absolutely smooth. Then turn up the heat and bring it to a good boil. Have a large bowl of cold water near your saucepan, so you can test the mixture to see when it’s ready. It will be ready when you take a spoonful of the fudge mixture and drop it into the bowl of cold water, the fudge will form into a ball. When this happens, remove the mixture from the heat and beat well with a wooden spoon, as it rethickens. Pour the whole mixture into a flat pan lined with wax paper, mark the squares in the fudge and wait for it to cool. When it’s cold, DEVOUR!

*My sister Dawna DeLa Fuente wrote this in 1981. It was one of her favorite snacks to make for our family trips to see the Nutcracker with our Gramma.  Dawna is a Fashion Stylist for De LA Fuente Image Consulting and has a high-end, fine jewelry line, accessories and a t-shirt line for men and woman.  She also has a beautiful family of her own, with three amazing kids who she gets to cook with daily.