Blog Archives

Tomato Mac & Cheese

Tomato and Mac & Cheese. It’s sounds like a strange combo doesn’t it?! At first, it really did sound crazy to me, but then I thought about it. One of my favorite comfort foods is grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup. So why not a Tomato Mac & Cheese? See, not so strange now, is it?

The entire idea behind my recipes as of late, is simplicity. Simple weeknight fall comfort foods. I’m no longer just a mom and housewife. I took a part time job at a school, and although part time, it’s fast paced. It’s a busy busy job, and by the time I’m done there and get home, I’m beat. The last thing I want to think about is dinner. This is where planning ahead, and making things very simple come into play.

This Tomato Mac & Cheese couldn’t be easier. It looks a lot like Dad’s Glop, but don’t get fooled because it’s a totally different flavor. Probably just as easy to prepare though, which is not a bad thing at all. Tired or not, I still need to bring my family around the table. Gathering my family around the table in the evenings, sharing a delicious meal, is so important to me that no matter what, it will not be compromised. With this recipe, you can do it too, and enjoy conversation and reconnecting with your family. To save on precious time, I like to chop my onions and garlic the night before and store them in an air tight container in the fridge. That way when I get home from work, and it’s time to cook dinner, I don’t have to waste precious time chopping the veggies. At this point it’s pretty much a dump and cook recipe. I hope you enjoy it as much as my family and I did, and enjoy some much needed reconnect time with your loved ones.

Print Recipe
Tomato Mac & Cheese Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a skillet, cook ground beef, onion and garlic over medium-high heat until meat is no longer pink. Drain any fat if necessary. Season with salt & pepper.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine cooked pasta, the beef mixture, soup, sauce, and milk. Heat mixture over medium heat until heated through, stirring occasionally.
  3. Serve with Parmesan cheese.
Recipe Notes

Adapted from Campbell's Kitchen

Share this Recipe

Fabulous Greek Burgers with Feta and Tzatziki Sauce – #SundaySupper

Sunday Supper and I are back, and this time we want to gather around the picnic table. That’s right, we are bringing you some awesome ideas for your Labor Day cookout. Whether you choose to spend it on the lack, in a friend’s backyard, or in your own backyard, you won’t want to miss these recipes. So, take the day off, gather your friends and family, choose your picnic spot, and celebrate the last hurrah before Fall!

What I’ve chosen to bring to this Sunday Supper table for Labor Day, is a nice big juicy burger. I love burgers, and because I love them so much, I prefer to make them at home rather than eat them out at a fast food place. The quality is so much better, and nearly the fat and calories you’ll consume at your local fast food joint. Another plus side to making them at home, you discover how versatile burgers can be! You see, this isn’t just any burger. This, my friends, is a Fabulous Greek Burger with Feta and Tzatziki Sauce, and it’s oh so easy, so delicious, and truly fabulous.  You’re gonna love it!

So lets start with the Tzatziki sauce. If you’ve never had Greek food, and you have no clue what in the world this sauce is, it’s just a cucumber/yogurt sauce, to put it simply. Seriously though, if you’ve never had this sauce, it’s gonna blow your mind when you try it. I very slightly adapted this sauce from one of my favorite blogs, Recipe Runner. To make the sauce, take your peeled and diced up English cucumber, non-fat plain Greek  yogurt, a little lemon juice, dill, pressed garlic, salt and pepper and combine that together. Then I put it in a blender, pulsed a few times until smooth. Cover, and refrigerate until you’re ready for it. Nice little make-ahead dealy there.  😉

For your burgers, you’ll want an extra large bowl so you have room to work with.  In this large bowl, mix your ground beef, crumbled fetta, red onion, garlic and hamburger seasoning. The best tool for mixing it up real good, your good clean hands. Once it’s all combined, I separate it out evenly into 6 large meatballs.

Press and shape your large meatballs into hamburger patties. I take my meatball that’s nice and packed tight, put it between wax paper, and smoosh it. Then peel the paper back, and shape the sides, patting out as needed. Then I line a baking sheet with wax paper and place my patties on that so that it’s ready for and easy for the Hubster to take them out the grill. My work is done here! It’s all on him now. 😆

And ladies & gentlemen, this is one of the reasons I love that man so much. Perfectly grilled, fabulous, juicy burgers and toasted buns. To assemble, just slather the bottom bun with that beautiful, mind-blowing Tzatziki sauce, top that with a beautifully grilled burger that’s loaded with feta and goodness, add your tomato slice, and top with baby spinach leaves, and then your top bun. Now finally, sit back, relax, and enjoy this burger, which happens to be our new favorite. Yes, even the kids!

Need something to go with it? Got ya covered! Serve this yummy burger up with a side of my Greek Pasta Salad. Perfect accompaniment! Have a safe and fun Labor Day folks! I hope you have found some inspiration for your own BBQ.

Labor Day Menu Ideas

Scrumptious Labor Day Sides and Starters

Delicious Labor Day Entrees

Luscious Labor Day Desserts

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Print Recipe
Fabulous Greek Burgers with Feta and Tzatziki Sauce Yum
Recipe by: Christine Titus
Cuisine Greek
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Cuisine Greek
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. SAUCE:
  2. Peel and dice cucumber. In a medium bowl, whisk remaining ingredients until well combined. Fold in the cucumber. Transfer mixture to a blender or food processor and pulse a few times until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings to your liking. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. BURGERS:
  4. In a large bowl, mix all burger ingredients except for buns, spinach and tomatoes.
  5. Shape into 6 patties, and place patties on the grill over medium heat.Cover and cook 5-8 minutes, turning once, until a meat thermometer reads 160 when inserted in the center of the patties.
  6. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of sauce on the bottom half of each bun. Top with a burger, tomato and spinach. Cover with top buns and enjoy!
Recipe Notes

Sauce slightly adapted from reciperunner.com

Burgers adapted from Betty Crocker

Share this Recipe

Dad’s Glop – #SundaySupper

Oh my we have been busy with back to school lately haven’t we?! Speaking of busy, things just get busier once school is in full swing. Before you know it there’s sports, and band, and fundraisers, and just all sorts of things going on all year to keep the kids and the parents busy! Thanks to #SundaySupper and our gracious host Em from Life Tastes Good for this back to school dinner event, we’ve got some fresh ideas for those busy weeknight dinners.

This one, is one of my favorites, and my family’s favorite too. Some people call it Goulash, others may call it American Chop Suey, but around here, we call this Dad’s Glop. Doesn’t sound appetizing does it? Well I can assure you it’s amazing. Not just amazing, but it’s quick and perfect for busy dinner nights.

There’s a reason for the unappetizing name though. There were occasional times when my dad would be in charge of dinner. I grew up with both of my parents working, so sometimes mom had to work late, or maybe wasn’t feeling well, or whatever the case that kept her out of the kitchen, and so it was up to dad. I remember asking him what was for dinner, and his answer was…. “Glop!” No joke. That’s what he said. He’s a funny guy, and apparently, this is Glop. My father isn’t just a funny guy, he’s a very simple guy, and folks, cooking doesn’t have to be a gourmet feast. It doesn’t have to be difficult. Simplicity can be so wonderful. Just like my Dad’s Glop. My brother still makes this from time to time for his family. I remember him calling me and asking me “what’s the recipe for Dad’s Glop?” I had to stifle a giggle before I told him how to make it. His response, “That’s it?!” Yea… that’s it.

So how simple? Well, let me show you how simple my dad likes to keep it, and hopefully you’ll give it a try yourself, and enjoy it as much as my family and I do.

First, grab a large pot and get some salted water started on the stove to boiling. While you are waiting for the water to boil, you’re going to want to chop up a small – medium onion and about 4 or 5 medium-large garlic cloves. I have a little hand chopper I use for both the onion and the garlic, which saves time for me because I’m really no good with a knife. I can’t do what I see Chefs on TV do. So anyway, you’ll want to brown your ground beef with the onion and garlic until the beef is no longer pink.

Drain your meat if necessary. Depends on how lean your beef is. Then add your favorite pasta sauce (homemade if you can your own would be great!) I like to  use a Tomato & Basil pasta sauce. Just 1 jar will do ya. Then add some black pepper to taste, and about 1-2 tablespoons of Italian seasoning. I just sprinkle it in until it looks like that (above). It’s really just to your taste.

Stir that all up in the pan real good and heat it just until it starts to bubble. Then cover it with a lid and lower the heat to simmer. Stir occasionally. By this time, your water should be boiling, or about to. Just dump your elbow noodles in the boiling water and cook as per the directions on the package; drain.

Now combine everything together in that same large pot. Mix it all up really good. Now you are ready to serve!

You can serve this with some cheesy garlic Texas toast, and a quick tossed salad like I did and you have a very family pleasing, quick weeknight meal!

I hope you give this a try, and enjoy Dad’s Glop!

Here are some more idea’s from my #SundaySupper friends!

Back to School Dinners

Beef and Pork

Pastas, Soups, Rice and Stews

Poultry

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Print Recipe
Dad's Glop Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus Inspired by my Father, John Soden
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet brown ground beef with onion and garlic until beef is no longer pink; drain and return to skillet.
  3. Add pasta sauce, pepper, and Italian seasoning to beef in skillet. Mix thoroughly. Bring just to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low and let simmer, stirring ocassionally.
  4. Add elbow macaroni to boiling water and cook according to package directions; drain and return to large pot.
  5. Add beef mixture to macaroni and stir to combine. Serve with Parmesan cheese, if desired and enjoy!
Recipe Notes

To round out this meal, serve with garlic bread and a tossed green salad with your favorite dressing.

From time to time, I add sliced black olives to the beef mixture when I add the sauce. I also like to use ground Italian sausage in place of the ground beef, or half sausage and half beef for a different twist.

Share this Recipe
8 Comments
POSTED IN: , ,


5 Bean Chili – #SundaySupper

Ok, so how many of you have kids that are just so sick of sandwiches? Or just don’t care for them? OR are just picky?! I happen to have a couple of those, and yet they want so badly to take lunch to school. I can’t blame them, the cafeteria food at their school is just, gross. I tried to come up with a more polite way of saying it, but lets face it, it’s gross. Poor kids don’t even get access to salt & pepper! Savage, right?!

Not to worry! #SundaySupper, along with our gracious host Christie Campbell from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures, are here to give you ideas for hot lunches to send your kids to school with. I never thought I could send hot lunches to school with my kids. I don’t know about your kids, but mine do not have access to a microwave while at school. So how do you keep food hot?

You would be amazed at the items available these days, from insulated lunch bags, to insulated containers that go beyond a thermos. Here’s one I really like:

Thermos Foogo – They have other colors besides pink, of course. This is a 10 oz food container, vacuum insulated to keep food hot or cold. It keeps things warm for 5 hours and cold for 7. The outside of the thermos doesn’t get hot, so it’s fine to put it in your lunch bag with cold items. Also, it’s easy to open. This particular one was designed with kids in mind. Yea it’s a thermos, but you can put so much more than just soup in it. Try leftover pasta from the night before, or a real kid favorite like mac & cheese.

Or, how about the recipe I’ve got for you today? This would go perfectly into that cute container, and would stay hot/warm until lunch time. My 5 bean chili! Now, I make my chili on the mild side because that’s just how I roll. My kids appreciate it too, and in fact they love this recipe. Even my bean hater doesn’t mind mom’s chili. It’s so simple too, because I make this in my 6 quart, black, oval Crockpot, and I just LOVE my Crockpot!

First you want to brown up 2 pounds of ground beef along with a bunch of chopped onion. I used two medium onions. As you can already tell, this recipe makes quite a bit of chili. It’s perfect for taking to a potluck, or you can freeze some of it. I have some in the freezer right now.

Once you’ve got the beef all browned up and the onion soft, drain it, if necessary, depending on how lean your meat is. Then just dump it in the slow cooker! The rest of this recipe, is pure dumping.

Drain your 5 cans of beans, and dump those into the slow cooker on top of your beef. I’ve got light red kidney beans, Cannellini beans, black beans, dark red kidney beans, and pinto beans.

Now dump in your 3 cans of Rotel, chili seasoning mixes, tomato sauce, water and salt & pepper. Then mix it up to combine it all real good. Cover, and cook on low for 7-8 hours or on high for 4 hours.

Garnish however you wish. For mine, I went heavy on some low-fat Mexican cheese blend, and a nice dollop of light sour cream. There are a lot of ways we have topped this delicious chili. We’ve used corn bread, fritos, tortilla chips, chopped fresh cilantro, jalapeno slices for those that enjoy a spicy kick. Top it with whatever your favorite toppings are.

Like I mentioned before, this makes a ton of chili, so why not turn leftovers into chili dogs? Or, how about Chili Cheese Burritos? I found that recipe over on Meggan’s blog Culinary Hill. So as you can see this chili is versatile, easy to make, delicious, and perfect for packing into your child’s thermos to take to school for lunch. Add a home made corn muffin, some fruit or a veggie like carrot sticks & celery along with their favorite dip and you’ve got a full and happy kid! It’s time to go beyond sandwiches, and add extra love into the lunch boxes!

 

Sunday Supper Hot Lunch Ideas

Hearty Hot Lunches

Soups and Stews

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Print Recipe
5 Bean Chili Yum
Recipe by: Christine Titus
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a skillet over medium-high heat, brown ground beef with the onions, breaking up clumps.
  2. Transfer beef mixture to slow cooker.
  3. Add beans, Rotel, seasoning mix, tomato sauce, water and salt and pepper. Stir everything together well. Cover and cook on high setting for 4 hours or on low for 7 to 8 hours.
  4. Ladle into bowls and serve with your favorite toppings and some cornbread.
Recipe Notes

Adapted from Sandra Lee

Share this Recipe

Amazing Blue Cheese & Bacon Burgers

This summer has been quite amazing so far! We’ve had a lot of cookouts, and a lot of time spent with family and friends. Although back to school is coming, and coming fast, it may feel like summer is coming to an end. In reality, we still have quite a bit of summer left! So lets not waste it! Fire up that grill! I’ve got something amazing for you!

I recently had my dad visiting from South Carolina. Although some would say my dad is a very picky eater, I wouldn’t classify him as picky. I would put him in the “simple” category. He’s a very simple person when it comes to food. He’s all about easy, traditional, and a meat & potatoes kinda guy. So for me, that’s super easy to cook for. I know the man pretty darn well, and I know that there are three things he loves a lot! That’s burgers, blue cheese, and bacon. So I created this Amazing Blue Cheese & Bacon Burger for him, which I slightly adapted from a Kraft. Before I get into the recipe, I just want to let you know that although I mention McCormick Grill Mates specifically, this is in no way a compensated post. I just really like the stuff.

Burgers, in my opinion, are always simple. Especially since I don’t run the grill. If you have yourself a personal grill master, all you have to do is mix it all up, smash some patties together and present them to the grill master! Your work is done! I happen to absolutely love my grill master.  😉

So take all of the ingredients listed, except for the bun of course, and mix it all up. I use my hands for this. Clean hands of course! Sometimes, you just gotta get down and dirty to get all those ingredients mixed up completely. It works really well. I do the same thing when I make meatloaf.

When it comes to the bacon bits, please don’t use that dried up nasty crunchy stuff like Bacos. I am using Real Bacon Bits which are located with all of the other salad toppings, usually in a plastic resealable bag. It makes a world of difference. You can also fry up some bacon and crumble it. The real bacon bits just save me that step and make it more convenient.

Feel free to top your burgers with your favorite toppings. We had lettuce and tomato for ours, but you could add pickles, and onion and all sorts of things. The sky’s the limit! Whatever you like!

Sit back, relax, and enjoy this juicy burger! I kept this very simple by serving it with some potato salad. But you could do a pasta salad, or perhaps from potato wedges or fries. What do you like to serve your burgers with?


Print Recipe
Amazing Blue Cheese & Bacon Burgers Yum
Recipe by: Christine Titus
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Preheat your grill to medium heat.
  2. In a large bowl, mix ground beef, blue cheese, real bacon bits, steak sauce and hamburger seasoning. I use my hands (clean of course) to mix it all up. It works so much better than a spoon and really gets it all incorporated into the meat.
  3. Divide meat into equal portions and shape into 8 patties (for hamburgers) or 12 patties (for sliders).
  4. Grill burgers, covered, over medium heat for 5-7 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer reads 160° and juices run clear. Place buns, cut side down, on grill for the last 2 minutes to toast the buns.
  5. Fill buns with burgers, and desired toppings.
  6. Enjoy!
  7. Serves: 8 hamburgers or 12 sliders
Recipe Notes

Slightly adapted from Kraft

Share this Recipe

Mashed Potato Hot Dish

This casserole is the perfect dish to serve your family on busy weekdays. You probably have all of the ingredients already in your pantry. This dish has a lot going on for it. It’s budget friendly for one, it’s easy to put together, and it tastes fantastic! All you need to round it out is a simple salad to serve on the side. Easy Peasy! Oh, and one other thing I love about this recipe, it’s topped with my favorite mashed potatoes. I make double the mashed potatoes for what I actually need in this recipe, so there are leftovers that I can serve as a side dish the next day. I mean, if I already have to make them, I might as well double up. That makes for an easy dinner the next day, since I don’t have to worry about a side. The potatoes go with anything, meatloaf, chicken, steak, pork chops. Oh I can name a million things that go with mashed potatoes, and trust me, after you taste these, you’re going to want more.

So lets get cooking!

There’s nothing to it really.  You’re just gonna take your ground beef, garlic and onion, and toss that in a large pan. Brown  up that hamburger and drain the fat if necessary. Then add your green beans, cream of chicken soup, and salt and pepper. Next layer!

Cheese! Oh yea. You’ve got to have cheese. If you’re worried about the fat content in this recipe, don’t be worried! I’ll let you in on a little secret. I used low fat cream of chicken soup, reduced fat cheese, 1/3 less fat Neufchatel cheese (instead of full fat cream cheese), and light sour cream. No one noticed! Just as I suspected. If you’re worried about the beef, switch it out for ground turkey. It’ll work out just the same and be fabulous, just the same. In fact next time I’m going to use ground turkey. So there go, don’t be scared, now put that cheese layer on. Next layer!

The mashed potato layer. These potatoes are easy to make, and this is also where the cream cheese, sour cream, butter and ranch dressing mix comes into play. But like I said above, you can lighten it up. I did! So spread that deliciousness over the cheese.

No, I’m not kidding. More cheese. That’s your final layer. Now plop that in the oven at 350 and bake it until it’s bubbly and the cheese is melted. About 20-25 minutes, which was the perfect amount of time for me to clean up those pans I used, and toss together a crisp green salad.

Enjoy!


Print Recipe
Mashed Potato Hot Dish Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Place potatoes in a large pot. Cover with water, and bring to a boil. Boil potatoes for 15-20 minutes or until fork tender; drain well.
  2. Return potatoes to large pot and add cream cheese, ranch dressing mix, sour cream and butter. With an electric hand held mixer on low speed, blend ingredients together. Once combined, turn to faster setting and whip potatoes until smooth. Cover and set aside.
  3. In a large skillet, cook beef, onion and garlic over medium heat until no longer pink and onion is soft. Drain if necessary.
  4. Stir in soup, green beans, and salt and pepper to taste
  5. Transfer beef mixture to a greased 2-qt. baking dish. Top with 1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese. Top cheese with mashed potatoes. Sprinkle top of potatoes with remaining cheese.
  6. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until bubbly and cheese is melted.
Recipe Notes

This recipe makes double Mashed potatoes than what you will need for this casserole. I like to make extra and then eat the left over potatoes as a side dish the next day. If you don't wish to do that, then just cut the mashed potato recipe in half.

Share this Recipe

Enchilada Bubble Bake

Mmmm Enchiladas. I can’t get enough of them! It’s one of my favorite flavors, that red enchilada sauce, therefore, one of my favorite Mexican dishes. Enchiladas are easy to make too, in fact I posted my take on some easy enchiladas which I named Awesome Beef Enchiladas. If you missed that, be sure to check it out.

But speaking of simplicity and my obsession with enchiladas, this dish I bring you today is even easier than my Awesome Beef Enchiladas! So if you don’t feel like rolling up tortillas with delicious enchilada fillings, and just wish you could have enchiladas you can just throw in a 13×9 and be done with it, well… your wish is my command!  This is exactly that easy. There is  just one little thing I would like to point out. I used to have a horrible time with dishes like this because it seemed like it would take FOREVER to get the biscuits to cook all the way through and even still, you might find one or two still a little raw in the center. Used to make me NUTS! The secret, make sure your meat mixture is piping hot when you add your biscuit dough to it. This will help those biscuits cook on time, evenly, and completely through.

So now, I bring to you….

I hope you enjoy!

Print Recipe
Enchilada Bubble Bake Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 13x9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. In a large skillet, cook beef over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until no longer pink. Drain, if necessary.
  3. Meanwhile, separate each can of dough into 10 biscuits. With a knife, or I like to use a pizza cutter, cut each biscuit into quarters.
  4. In large bowl, stir together beef, beans, and enchilada sauce. Add biscuit pieces and toss gently to coat. Spread mixture evenly in baking dish. Sprinkle cheese over top.
  5. Bake 25 to 30 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Recipe Notes
  • You will want to make sure your meat mixture is piping hot when you add your biscuit dough to it. This will help those biscuits cook on time, evenly, and completely through.
  • You can top this delicious casserole with any of your favorite toppings like sour cream and/or guacamole.
  • You could also use ground turkey in this recipe.

Slightly adapted from Betty Crocker

Share this Recipe