Tasty Tuesday–Turkey, Cranberry, and Goat Cheese Quesadillas

I modified this recipe from one our local grocery store suggested as a way to use up leftover turkey…the combination of flavors is amazing! I will definitely be adding this one to our Thanksgiving leftovers permanent collection!

  • 2 limes
  • 1/2 cup leftover or whole berry canned cranberry sauce
  • 8 (8-inch) flour tortillas
  • 1 8 oz. package chèvre (goat cheese) with herbs, softened
  • 2 cups chopped leftover or cooked turkey
  • 1 small jalapeño pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
  • salsa and/or guacamole

Zest limes. In small bowl, stir together cranberry sauce and lime zest.

Place tortillas on work surface; evenly spread each with one ounce chèvre, then cranberry sauce mixture. Evenly top four tortillas with turkey and jalapeño; top with remaining tortillas to close quesadillas.

In batches, spray 12-inch skillet with cooking spray; add 1 quesadilla and cook over medium-low heat 2 to 3 minutes or until bottom is golden brown. Spray top of quesadilla with cooking spray; turn and cook 2 to 3 minutes longer or until bottom is golden brown. Cut each into 6 wedges; serve with salsa and guacamole.

Quote of the Day

This is totally how I rationalize my exploits while cooking:

I wasn’t eating them, I was merely checking them to see if they were not burnt. It’s a chef’s thing, dear. Miss Piggy as Emily Cratchit in The Muppet Christmas Carol

Tasty Tuesday–Thanksgiving Leftovers Casserole

Thanksgiving is almost here! It’s hard to tell if we like the holiday meal better, or all the leftovers meals that follow. Today, I’m sharing my favorite of our leftovers dinners (other than turkey soup)…it uses four different Thanksgiving foods (all of which I make from scratch)! I’ll be honest, though, and admit that I always end up making a fresh batch of mashed potatoes for this recipe, because we never have leftovers of those! Also, the amounts are fairly flexible, so if you have a little less stuffing, or a little more turkey, you can still make it work.

  • 4 cups leftover prepared stuffing
  • 3/4 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
  • 4 cups leftover cooked turkey (about 1 lb.)
  • 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
  • 2-3 Tbsp. Italian seasoned dry bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9×13 pan. Spoon in stuffing, then top with cranberry sauce and turkey.
Combine mayonnaise with cheese. Evenly spread 1/2 of the mayonnaise mixture over turkey. Top with potatoes, then evenly spread with remaining mayonnaise mixture. Sprinkle with bread crumbs.
Bake 40 minutes or until golden brown and heated through. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Tasty Tuesday–“Laissez les bon temps rouler!”

I decided to go all out for Mardi Gras this year! We had pączki for breakfast (store bought…one of these years I’ll make them from scratch), red beans and rice with andouille sausage for lunch, beignet for an afternoon snack (my first-ever attempt at making donuts, and a very successful one at that!), jambalaya for dinner, and a King Cake for dessert. It was a delicious day!

Let the good times roll!

Tasty Tuesday–Pasta e Fagioli

Pasta e Fagioli (from Giordano’s!) was one of my favorite soups when I was a child. I decided to try to replicate it at home. Maybe it’s just because it’s been so long since I had it, but I think I did a pretty good job, and all of the children loved it!

  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 29 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. dried basil
  • 1 Tbsp. dried oregano
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 15 oz. can cannellini or Great Northern beans
  • 1 15 oz. can navy beans
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 pound ditalini (or other small) pasta

In a large pot over medium heat, cook onion in olive oil until translucent. Stir in garlic and cook until tender. Add wine and reduce. Reduce heat, and stir in tomato sauce, water, parsley, basil, oregano, salt, cannelini beans, navy or Great Northern beans and parmesan cheese. Simmer 1 hour.
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain. Stir into soup and heat through..

The First Feast of 2015

Yesterday marked our first feast of the New Year…pot roast, mashed potatoes and gravy, roast carrots, cherry Jell-O, and crescent rolls, with a champagne cake for dessert:

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I’m already looking forward to all of the other special celebrations we’ll be having this year!

The Thanksgiving Feast–2014

We had our standard Thanksgiving feast today: turkey and gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberries, green beans with almonds, and rolls. I did add brussels sprouts for the first time, since they’ve become the children’s favorite vegetable, but that was the only new addition.

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We had a record seven pies for dessert after our annual family viewing of Holiday Inn. Frankly, I can’t believe anybody had room for dessert, but we managed to put a dent in them. There’s still plenty left, though, for more desserts the next few days, and our traditional pie for breakfast the day after Thanksgiving!

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I think I’ve gotten pretty good at setting a festive table. I especially love the addition of the Lego turkey…it’s so us, and so fun!

I hope your Thanksgiving was as happy and full of love and laughter as ours was!

Oktoberfest 2014

Today was our annual family Oktoberfest celebration. We had some old favorites (homemade pretzels, German beer and cheese fondue served with brats, pretzels, and pickles, sauerkraut, and Black Forest Cherry Torte for dessert), and some new items (bratwurst and homemade German potato salad), on our menu.

This is always a fun day. The children really look forward to making the pretzels, and I love the chance to break out our polka CD so we can sing and dance! Prost!

A Feast for the Fourth–2014

We had our standard Fourth of July feast for dinner tonight: beef brisket, corn on the cob, baked beans, potato salad, and watermelon…yum!

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I made something new for dessert…a triple berry crisp, served warm with ice cream. It was also a hit!

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Today was a very nice Independence Day!

Tasty Tuesday–Gyros

Since we had leftover Easter lamb, I decided to try making gyros, complete with homemade tzatziki sauce. I was quite impressed with the end result!

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