Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Sugar Cookies & My First Giveaway!

I was thrilled when Elizabeth, from Ann Clark LTD, wrote to me to ask if I would be interested in reviewing some of their cookie cutters. If you are not familiar with the Ann Clark company, they have been producing unique cookie cutters and related gift products in Vermont since 1990. Anne Clark LTD is one of the leading cookie cutter companies in the United States, plus they enjoy a distribution across the country and world wide.

Let me tell you first hand, their cookie cutters are very nice. I've had the opportunity to use their over-sized individual cookie cutters. Each cutter comes with a cookie recipe + an icing recipe.

I used the recipes that came with the cookie cutters. There are several more cookie recipes on their website, as well. The cookies were crisp on the edges and soft and chewy in the centers ...just the way sugar cookies should be!

Where's the pictures of the cookies that I baked? Sadly, there aren't any. I made the sugar cookies with every intention of icing them but then my son and I got sick once again. We both suffer with allergies and this year the tree pollen is really causing havoc for us. So we ended up eating the cookies without icing them (they are really good that way!). There will be a next time for these cookie cutters and then I will post a picture of them!

~*~*~ Instead of waiting for the pictures of my sugar cookies, you will have a chance to win your very own set of Ann Clark Cookie Cutters! ~*~*~


One lucky winner will win a "My Green Thumb" cookie cutter set!

A delightful set of five tin cookie cutters packaged in a sturdy gift box. Each set comes with the artwork of Ann Clark and recipes for cookies and frosting. Cookie cutters include: hummingbird, butterfly, dragonfly, ladybug, and watering can.


1. Sign up to follow Tami's Kitchen Table Talk using Google Friend Connect or let me know that you are already a follower. (please provide the name that you're signed up under.)

2. Sign up to receive Tami's Kitchen Table Talk newsletter or let me know that you already receive it. (please provide the email address.)

3. Join the Cookie Carnival Blog Event that I host each month or let me know that you are already a member of it. (please provide the email address that you use to receive the Cookie Carnival info.)

4. Check out the Ann Clark website and tell me what your favorite cookie cutter is PLUS sign up to join their "Make More Cookies" blog. (please let me know that you've signed up.)


The winner will have 48 hrs. to contact me after being notified of winning. If there's no response, I will move on and pick another winner. 



Monday, April 26, 2010

Broiled Tomato & Goat Cheese Salad

This delicious salad makes a wonderful lunch or light dinner.

I came up with this recipe on a night when my family was enjoying pasta with red sauce and I didn't want to feel completely left out.The roasted tomatoes and slightly strong goat cheese pair wonderfully together. Low carber or not, this salad is sure to please.

Broiled Tomato & Goat Cheese Salad

1 tomato (about the size of a baseball), cut into 4 slices
1/2 c. crumbled goat cheese
olive oil
dried basil (you could definitely use fresh basil but I didn't have any on hand)
1/2 c. cooked and crumbled hot sausage
1 - 1 1/2 c. Italian salad blend lettuce
low carb vinaigrette* - recipe below
grated Parmesan cheese

Wash salad mix and set aside.

To make the low carb vinaigrette:

1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. red wine vinegar
1 packet Splenda
1 tsp. grainy brown mustard
1 tsp. Italian seasoning

Pour all ingredients into a salad dressing cup or a container with a tight fitting lid. Shake well. Pour over salad. Toss to mix. Set aside.

Line a baking sheet with foil. Lightly drizzle olive oil over the foil. Lay the slices of tomato on top of the olive oil. Lightly sprinkle some dried basil over the tops of the tomatoes. Flip the tomatoes over, drizzle with olive oil and dried basil.

Evenly divide the 1/2 c. of hot sausage over the tomatoes.

Sprinkle the goat cheese evenly over the sausage.

Heat the broiler to 450*  Stick the pan under the broiler until the cheese has slightly browned  - 5 to 8 minutes.

 Serve tomatoes on top of salad greens. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the salad.


Stuffed Pepper Soup

Do you love stuffed peppers but hate the hassle of making them? I've taken the hassle out of it by creating a quick and easy stuffed pepper soup. From the start of preparing it ... to serving it up for dinner, it is less than 60 minutes!

Stuffed Pepper Soup

2 tbsp. olive oil 2 lb. ground turkey
3 medium-sized green peppers, diced into small pieces
1- 48 oz can of brand name tomato juice (Use a name brand for better flavor)
2 c. chicken broth
1 - 14.5 can of diced tomatoes
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. onion powder
2 dashes of liquid smoke (leave it out if you don't like it)
2 tsp. Montreal steak seasoning (or course ground black pepper)
4 c. cooked rice, set aside

Add 2tbsp. of olive oil to a large (non-stick) stock pot. Brown the ground turkey and green peppers together in the pot. Stir the remaining ingredients (not including the rice) into the turkey and peppers. Cover the pot with a lid; cook over medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring once in a while. Lower heat to medium-low and continue cooking for 15 - 25.

To serve: 

Using an ice cream scoop, place one scoop of rice into a bowl. Ladle the soup over the rice.

Serve with warm cornbread.

***Crockpot Method***

You can also cook this soup in the crockpot. Brown the turkey and green peppers. While these items are browning, pour the remaining ingredients (not including the rice) into a 5 quart crockpot. Stir in the turkey and peppers. Cook on low for 4 -6 hrs.

Serve over cooked rice with cornbread on the side.

Leftover soup may be frozen.

Menu Plan Monday

I'm so happy to see Monday arrive! Here's our menus for the week...... 

Family Menu

M - stuffed pepper soup* - new recipe

T - blueberry pancakes, scrambled eggs & turkey bacon

W - chili

H - fajita pizza* & salad - new recipe

F - Chili's southwest egg rolls* - new recipe

A - Asian chicken lettuce wraps & fried rice* - new recipes

My Low Carb Menu

M - low carb stuffed pepper

T - omelet & turkey bacon

W - tuna lettuce wraps

H - cheesy cauliflower bacon soup*  - new recipe

F - taco chicken salad

A - Asian chicken lettuce wraps* - new recipe

Have a wonderful week!

Check out Menu Plan Monday at Org. Junkie .com. (will add link once it's up and running)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Menu Plan

It's been a crazy week here at home but I did manage to get a menu planned for this week. I decided last week that I would start making some of the recipes that I marked in several of the magazines that I've been saving. Once again I'm keeping the menu simple so that dinner time will (hopefully) stay calm.

Family Menu

M- pork tenderloin, pierogies & green beans

T - pasta shells & sauce

W - Mexican tortilla pizza & Spanish rice (recipe from last week. Did not make it)

H - egg mcmuffins, fried potatoes

F - ham & turkey cordon bleu on a bun, cucumber salad & tater tots

A - Kraft quick beef and pasta post

My Low Carb Menu

M - pork tenderloin, zucchini ribbons & green beans

T - broiled tomatoes w/goat cheese & salad

W - Mexi-American burger

H - eggs and ham (not green. lol!)

F - ham & turkey lettuce wraps

A - leftovers

For more inspiration, check out the many other menu plans on Menu Plan Monday

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Twisted Chicken Salad - Low Carb, Too!

I ended up really stirring things up for my low carb dinner tonight. Some of my best recipes come from throwing together "a little of this and that". That's what happened when I decided that I wasn't in the mood for a "normal" chicken salad. My family was having chicken & cheese enchiladas so a taco salad was the obvious next move....wasn't wanting that either.

On hand I had....
cooked shredded chicken
sour cream
Monterey Jack cheese
coleslaw mix

I decided on making a taco salad with a twist - using coleslaw instead of lettuce & sour cream and salsa instead of a salad dressing.

Twisted Chicken Salad
makes 1 -2 servings 

If you are serving 2, you will need
to make an extra cheese crisp bowl.

1 C. shredded cooked chicken
1/4 C. sour cream
1/2 C. salsa
1/2 C shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 C. coleslaw mix
5 black olives for garnish
1 large cheese crisp bowl* - instructions below

Stir together sour cream and salsa. Stir in chicken, cheese and coleslaw mix. Refrigerate mixture for at least 30 minutes in a container with a tight fitting lid.

While the chicken salad is chilling, make the cheese crisp bowl:

I make my cheese crisps a little differently than a lot of people... I like to use shredded cheese instead of cubed cheese. I also microwave them instead of baking them or cooking them on a stove top. Any way you choose to make them, they are so good!

There are great examples of how to make cheese crisps on Linda's Low Carb Recipes & Menus. She posts instructions, along with many pictures. I have had much success in the past using the microwave to make them.

I doubled the amt. of cheese that Linda uses to make the large crisp in her first picture. I blotted the oils from the cheese using a paper towel after the first minute or so of cooking. It took about 3 minutes to cook this large crisp. Immediately remove the plate from the microwave (use oven mitts!!) and sit on the counter to cool for 30 seconds or until it is still hot but you can handle it. Once you can pick up the crisp, fold the sides of the crisp to create a "dish".

Fill the cheese dish half full of the chicken salad. Garnish with sliced olives.


Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas

My family loved tonight's dinner from Campbell's - Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas. - other than the fact that I nearly burned them down with flaming hot picante sauce. I searched all over the bottle for the word "hot" but I didn't see it written anywhere....I assumed that it wouldn't be that hot. (and what is it that they say about assuming???) This didn't stop them from asking me to make it again --- just to cool it down.

I doubled the recipe to make 12 enchiladas. It's such an easy recipe that went together really quickly. Once assembled, all you have to do is pop it into the oven and put the rice (the side dish) on to cook.

Can you say MMmmm MMmmm Good!

Chicken and Cheese Enchiladas
from Campbell's

1 can (10 3/4 ounces) Campbell's® Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup  (Regular or 98% Fat Free)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup Pace® Picante Sauce - I bought another brand but the next time I will buy Pace!
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese  (about 2 ounces)
6 flour tortillas (6-inch), warmed
1 small tomato, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1 green onion, sliced (about 2 tablespoons)

Heat the oven to 350°F. Stir the soup, sour cream, picante sauce and chili powder in a medium bowl.

Stir 1 cup soup mixture, chicken and cheese in a large bowl.

Divide the chicken mixture among the tortillas. Roll up the tortillas and place seam-side up (I put them seam side down and it worked out much better. Be sure to spray your pan with non-stick cooking spray.) in a 2-quart shallow baking dish.

Pour the remaining soup mixture over the filled tortillas. Cover the baking dish.

 Bake for 40 minutes or until the enchiladas are hot and bubbling.  

Top with the tomato and onion. I didn't do this extra step. Instead, I sprinkled on about 3 oz more of Monterey Jack cheese on top of the enchiladas. The next time that I make this dish, I will stick it back under the broiler to melt the cheese topping and to crisp it up a bit.

 Serve the enchiladas over cooked rice.

Vegetable Beef Soup with Cheese Crisps - Low Carb, Too!

I cooked a big beef roast in my crockpot last week. The leftovers from that roast went into Monday's soup.

I changed the ingredients from my family's soup so that I could eat it without loading up on too many carbs. This soup turned out to be some of the best soup that I've ever eaten. 

This is certainly not just a low carb dish. Just double or triple this recipe to feed a family. 

Low Carb Vegetable Beef Soup
makes 2 hearty servings

2 C. beef broth
1/3 C shredded, cooked beef roast
1 small zucchini, peeled and cut into small cubes
1 turnip, peeled and cut into small cubes
1/4 C. cooked carrots ( I used leftovers)
1 - 1 1/2 C. coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage)
1 pinch each of: lemon-pepper seasoning, basil,
garlic powder & red pepper flakes

Pour beef broth into a med-sized pot. Turn heat to high to heat up the broth. Turn the heat down to medium.

Add the remaining ingredients. Cook the soup until the turnips and zucchini are tender - about 10 minutes.

While the soup is cooking, make the cheese crisps: 

Cheese Crisps

I make my cheese crisps a little differently than a lot of people... I like to use shredded cheese instead of cubed cheese. I also microwave them instead of baking them or cooking them on a stove top. Any way you choose to make them, they are so good!

There are great examples of how to make cheese crisps on Linda's Low Carb Recipes & Menus. She posts instructions, along with many pictures. I have had much success in the past using the microwave to make them.

Menu Plan

Somehow I've lost my mojo when it comes to being creative in the kitchen and blogging about it. I took last week of to spend with my kids while they were on spring break. I thought that it might inspire me.....  I haven't been bitten by the inspiration bug just yet. I'm working on getting it back!

I made it a point to plan simple meals this week.
I'm still trying new a couple of new recipes. :)

Our Family Menu

M - beefy vegetable soup (made with leftover beef roast from last week)

T - Campbell's chicken & cheese enchiladas

W -crockpot bbq roast beef sandwiches & pasta salad

H - Mexican tortilla pizzas* & salad - new recipe

F - blueberry pancakes, scrambled eggs & turkey bacon

A - stuffed pepper soup* (if I can find a deal on green peppers - if not, plan on chili)

I'm back to strictly low carbing again. I was really off last week.

My Low Carb Menu

M - beefy vegetable soup with cheese crisps

T - chicken salad

W - roast beef  roll ups & mashed "faux"tatoes

H - Mexican pizza crisps* & salad - new recipe

F - omelet & turkey bacon

S - sloppy joe stuffed pepper ( could change depending on family meal)

I hope that you are having a great week!

For more menu ideas, check out Menu Plan Monday.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Cookie Carnival - March Round Up!


Check out all of these wonderful versions of Hershey's Walnut Mint Bars from our creative Cookie Carnival blogger friends:

Carol @ No Reason Needed says "I was never a fan of walnuts in baked items but these bars were wonderful - maybe even more so because of the walnuts!"

Tiffiny @ The Bake-Off Flunkie took a chance on baking this recipe with no altitude adjustments and ended up very happy with the results!

Amanda @ Amanda's Cookin switched out the walnuts & mint for almonds in her almond cheesecake bars!

Tessa @ The Cookin' Chemist also left the nuts out of her bars, calling them mint cream cheese bars!

Michelle @ Something New is Cooking celebrated her 200th post with the Cookie Carnival!

Tami @ Tami's Kitchen Table Talk  switched out the walnuts for pecans in her pecan mint bars!

Carrie @ Carrie's Sweet Life says that she was not a mint fan...until lately. She said that she loved these mint bars!

This was a great round-up, everyone!

I look forward to seeing everyone at the end of April!

If you'd like to join in on the fun at the Cookie Carnival, here's what you need to do

Happy Baking,
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