Split Pea and Ham Soup

     Talk about winter comfort food.  This is it.  Just look at those chunks of Ham and Carrots.  I’ve tweaked my recipe, so it tastes even better. Pair it with a Salad and/or Cornbread for a wholesome, delicious meal.  Give it a try!  It freezes wonderfully, so make extra.

INGREDIENTS:

2 1/4 cups dried Split Peas

2 quarts Chicken Broth (64 oz) (5 cans = 70 oz)

1 ½ lbs ham bone (or leftover diced ham)

½ cup Diced Celery

1 chopped Onion

1 clove garlic

½ tsp salt

½ tsp pepper

¼ tsp thyme

1/8 tsp marjoram

1 potato, trimmed and cubed (If you plan on freezing, omit the taters)

Start with 2 carrots, add a few more later.   Original ones will break down

OPTIONAL: ¼ tsp Crushed Red Pepper

PREPARATION:

     There is two ways to prepare dried Peas.  Sort and rinse the Peas before you do anything.  Then either soak them overnight in cold water, or the quicker way is to simmer them for 5 minutes, and remove from heat.  Let them soak for 60 to 90 minutes.

     In a large pot (minimum 6 quart), add Ham Bone, soaked Peas, Chicken Broth, Celery, Garlic, and Onion.  (Even though they will get blended later, I add a chopped Carrot or two now because they will add extra flavor to the Soup.) Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook until Peas are tender.  It will take at least 90 minutes.  NOTE:  If you’re using leftover diced Ham, don’t add it until the Peas have been blended.

     Once the Peas are tender, remove the Ham Bone and set aside.  You can either use a food processor or an immersible blender to blend the soup to your desired consistency.  Add diced Carrots and cook until tender.  Add diced Ham.  Add seasonings and cook for 5 more minutes.  Serve.

Sausage Mushroom Cornbread Stuffing

Made with my Prize-Winning Cornbread Recipe

     I LOVE Cornbread Stuffing!  I can still remember the first time I ever had it.  I couldn’t believe how delicious it was.  I make Cornbread a lot, so I often make an extra one to put in the freezer for when I’m craving Cornbread Stuffing.  It goes great with most anything, Poultry, Fish, Ham, Meatloaf, Pork Chops or Roast, or anything else you can think of.  Since the main Ingredient is Cornbread, you want to make homemade.  Eat some of it for dinner the night before or have it for breakfast.  Day old Cornbread is best for Cornbread Stuffing. (My recipe is below.)

     This recipe has the addition of Mushrooms and Carrots which I don’t always add to my Stuffing.  It’s very nice for a change. 

INGREDIENTS:  YIELDS 5-6 Servings

½ lb Breakfast Sausage (I prefer Jimmy Dean, Sage flavor) Freeze the rest.

4 cups crumbled Cornbread

¾ cup Herbed Stuffing Mix (or stale bread, crumbled)

3 TBSP Butter

1 cup Mushrooms, chopped

¼ cup Onions, chopped

3 TBSP Mini Sweet Peppers, chopped

3 TBSP Celery, chopped

3 TBSP Carrot, diced

½ – ¾ tsp Dried Sage + extra for cooking

½ tsp Dried Thyme

Salt & Black Pepper to taste

1 ¾ cups Chicken Broth (or use some Buttermilk & less Chicken Broth)

PREPARATION:

     In a large skillet, cook and crumble Sausage.  Place in large bowl.  Drain grease, if there is any.

     In the same skillet, add Butter, all the Vegetables, and a few dashes of Pepper, Sage, and Thyme.  Cook until Carrots are just about tender.  Add ½ tsp Sage and ½ tsp Thyme, and stir into the Vegetables.  Remove from heat and set aside for a minute.

     In the same large bowl, add Herbed Stuffing Mix and crumbled Cornbread on top of the Sausage.  Stir.

Add the cooked Vegetables, and stir. 

    Pour Chicken Broth over mixture, stir.  Cornbread Stuffing needs to be wetter than normal Stuffing because it’s best when it’s on the moist side. Add the Chicken Broth and stir well.  If it seems too dry, add some extra Chicken Broth, Buttermilk or regular Milk.

     Place Stuffing into a Buttered 9” x 9” baking dish.  Cover with Aluminum Foil to prevent it from drying too much.  Bake for 20 minutes at 375° F.  Remove the Foil and check to see if you need to add any extra liquid.  Return Stuffing to the oven.  Bake for another 30 minutes or so.  You want the top to be slightly browned and a little crispy, but don’t let it dry out. 

NOTES:  This is an easily customizable dish.  Omit any of the Vegetables you don’t want, add other Vegetables you do want. 

You can cook it at a higher temperature if you’re cooking something else as the main course, just lessen the baking time. 

     The only cornbread recipe I use.  I like my Cornbread moist and a little on the sweet side.  Give this a try.  It freezes beautifully! If you love Cornbread Stuffing, this is the Cornbread to use!  This is my cornbread that won first prize at the Jefferson County Fair. I always sauté chopped Onion in the same cast iron skillet that I’ll bake the Bread in.  Most of the time I add about 6 chopped Jalapenos.  Sometimes I add chopped Bell Pepper or chopped Mini Sweet Peppers.  (If you plan on making Cornbread Stuffing, omit the Jalapenos.  I think it ruins the Stuffing.)

     Wonderful with chili, tuna casserole, soup, breakfast.  Cornbread is basically a quick bread.  It’s incredibly easy and so satisfying.  I can’t think of anything Cornbread doesn’t go with.

INGREDIENTS:

½ cup Crisco

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 cup + 2 TBSP yellow corn meal

2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

1 ½ cup flour

1 ½ cup buttermilk

PREPARATION:

Cream Crisco and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add eggs and half of the milk.  Beat well.

Add baking powder and salt, mixing until combined.

Add corn meal, flour and remainder of milk.  Mix until combined.

The best cornbread is always baked in a cast iron pan.  The edges get so wonderfully crispy.  If you don’t have one, use a greased cake pan or baking dish.

BAKE AT 375* for about 40 minutes, or until desired browning is achieved. I don’t like mine pale and always let it get browned.  (See picture)

I often bake a half batch.  Know, however, that the leftover bread can be frozen to make stuffing with!

NOTE:  My special additives are sautéed onions, chopped jalapenos, a little cooked and crumbled bacon, mini sweet peppers, green bell pepper, fresh corn, etc.  I think you get the idea.  If it sounds good?  Add it.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2019

PEANUT BUTTER HONEY COOKIES

PEANUT BUTTER HONEY COOKIES
PEANUT BUTTER HONEY COOKIES

    There’s just something soothing and homey about homemade peanut butter cookies.  Is it because your grandmother and mother used to make them?  Is it just because they’re so darn good?  I’m not sure, but whatever the reason – we love ‘em! 

     This simple recipe uses one bowl, one measuring cup and a spatula.  It’s simple enough for your beginner baker to try his or her hand.

INGREDIENTS: Yield 25 cookies

3/4 cup – honey*

1/4 cup – butter or margarine, softened

1 – egg

3/4 cup – peanut butter

1 teaspoon – vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon – salt

1/2 teaspoon – baking soda

1-1/2 cups AP unbleached flour

¾ cup chocolate chips

PREPARATION:

In mixer bowl, cream honey and butter until light and fluffy. Beat in egg, peanut butter, vanilla, salt, and baking soda. Add flour, mixing until combined. Stir in chocolate chips.

Drop dough, one heaping tablespoon at a time, onto well-greased baking sheet. Bake at 350°F for 12-15 minutes. Remove cookies from sheet and cool on wire rack.

Please remember not to feed honey to children under one- year-old.  Read more:   http://kidshealth.org/parent/infections/bacterial_viral/botulism.html

*I used local raw honey

PEANUT BUTTER HONEY COOKIES
PEANUT BUTTER HONEY COOKIES

PEANUT BUTTER HONEY COOKIES
PEANUT BUTTER HONEY COOKIES

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CHEW WANNA EAT?

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CHEW WANNA EAT, by Gail Westover is her newest creation.  Gail, an avid cook, has been writing what she calls “the never ending cookbook” for many years.  In the meantime, friends regularly ask for her recipe for one thing or another.  Instead of a book, Gail has chose to go this route for now.  Guest cooks will be invited to share some of their special creations.  Submit your recipe with good quality photo to chewwannaeat@gmail.com

Parmesan/Mozzarella Fried Green Tomatoes Over Pasta

Vegetarian!

     Imagine eating a homemade chunky Mushroom Spaghetti Sauce over Rigatoni topped with Parmesan and Mozzarella Green Fried Tomatoes?  I imagined it this week, and here it is.  Bob had asked for my Fried Green Tomatoes, and this is what I served him.  Boy, was he happy!!  He loved it!  He didn’t want any Salad or Homemade Italian Bread, although I would have normally served both of them.  Anyway, here it is!  Parmesan/Mozzarella Green Fried Tomatoes with Mushrooms over Rigatoni.  Of course, you can use any Pasta you would like. 

CHUNKY-STYLE MUSHROOM SAUCE INGREDIENTS:  Yields 4 Servings

Drizzle Olive Oil

2 TBSP Tomato Paste

¼ cup Onion, diced or chopped

2-3 cloves Garlic, chopped

3” squirt of Anchovy Paste

½ – ¾ cup Mushrooms, sliced

One 28 oz can Diced or Crushed Tomatoes

¼ cup Parmesan Cheese, grated

¼ cup Romano Cheese, grated

Seasonings: ½ tsp Onion Powder, ½ tsp Garlic Powder, ½ tsp Parsley, ½ tsp Basil, ¼ tsp crushed Red Pepper, ¼ tsp Italian

PREPARATION:

     Drizzle a few TBSP of Olive Oil in 3 quart sauce pan.  Add Tomato Paste, Onion, Garlic and Anchovy Paste.  Sauté 3 minutes over Low heat, stirring often.  Add Mushrooms and Sauté over Low heat another few minutes.   (Start the Tomatoes while Sauce is simmering).

     Add Tomatoes, stir to combine.  Bring to a simmer and let it cook 15-20 minutes.  Add grated Cheeses and Seasonings.  Simmer another few minutes.  Serve over cooked Pasta with Sauce.

TOMATO INGREDIENTS:  Yields 4 Servings

2 eggs, beaten

2 TBSP milk

3 large Green Tomatoes, washed and thinly sliced

1 cup AP flour

1/3 cup Yellow Corn Meal

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp parsley

Salt and pepper

Optional ½ tsp Crushed Red Pepper

8 oz Marinara or prepared Spaghetti Sauce

PREPARATION:

     In a small bowl, beat egg and milk.  Set aside.

     In a second small bowl, combine Flour, Corn Meal, and all the Seasonings. 

     Dip sliced tomatoes first in flour, then in egg, then in flour again. Coat both sides. 

     I placed the slices on aluminum foil which I lightly sprayed with cooking spray.  After breading, I drizzled with Olive Oil and cooked them 10 min in air fryer until they were golden brown.  Then I flipped them over, (no need to drizzle more olive oil) and cook for 6 -7 minutes or until they are golden brown. NOTE:  These could easily be pan fried, cooked in a convection oven, or a standard oven.

     Place a little dab of Spaghetti Sauce or Marinara on top of each tomato.  Sprinkle Parmesan, Romano, and Mozzarella Cheese on top.  Return to air fryer for 1 – 2 minutes or until Cheeses are bubbly and golden.

     Plate the pasta, add Sauce, place Tomatoes on top.  Serve.

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Fried Green Tomato Parm and Fried Zucchini Parm

     These were knock your socks off delicious. Even the fussy little grandkids liked them because they are lightly crispy on the outside, and topped with sauce and cheese.  They thought they were having mini pizza. 

If you are lucky enough to have a garden that produced a lot of Tomatoes and Zucchini, but you’re getting sick to death of BLTs, Tomato Sandwiches, Zucchini Bread, Sauteed Zucchini, etc. give this a try! FRIED GREEN TOMATO PARMESAN AND FRIED ZUCCHINI PARMESAN The Vegetables were knock your socks off delicious. Even the fussy little grandkids liked them because they were lightly crispy on the outside, and topped with sauce and cheese. They said it was like eating mini pizza.

Bob loves fried green tomatoes. Unfortunately, I never remember to make them until one of our tomatoes falls off the vine before it ripens. The kids mentioned a few Tomatoes had fallen, and just like that – I had a revelation! Fried Green Tomatoes for Bob! Between the garden (which is about 1 step from the back door) and the house, I changed my mind. I thought, “Hmm, I wonder what Fried Green Tomatoes Parmesan would taste like?”

In the few seconds it took to wash the tomatoes and turn to the counter, I saw a Zucchini just lying on the counter. I thought, “Hmm, I wonder what Fried Zucchini Parmesan would taste like?” And I was off! This is how my mind works sometimes when I’m in the kitchen. Things just pop in there. I have no clue if Fried Green Tomato Parmesan – OR – Fried Zucchini Parmesan are real dishes or not. I’ve never heard of either.

INGREDIENTS:

2 Medium Green Tomatoes, washed and thinly sliced.

1 Small Zucchini, washed and sliced 1/2” thick

1 cup AP flour

½ cup yellow corn meal

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp parsley

Salt and pepper

2 eggs, beaten

2 TBSP milk

PREPARATION:

In a small bowl, beat egg and milk. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Place flour and corn meal in a second bowl, add parsley, garlic powder, onion powder. Stir.

Dip sliced tomatoes first in flour, then in egg, then in flour again. Coat both sides. Repeat with the Zucchini.

I cooked everything in the air fryer on one tray (See pics). I used aluminum foil which I lightly sprayed with cooking spray. After breading, I drizzled with Olive Oil and cooked them 10 min in air fryer until they were golden brown. Then I flipped them over, drizzled more olive oil and cooked for 6 -7 minutes or until they were golden brown.

Dab a little Spaghetti Sauce or Marinara on top of each one. Sprinkle Parmesan, Romano, and Mozzarella Cheese on top. Return to air fryer for 1 – 2 minutes or until Cheeses are bubbly and golden.

NOTE: These could easily be pan fried, cooked in a convection oven, or a standard oven.

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Zucchini Banana Bread

     This may sound like a weird combination, but trust me; it’s delicious. Moist, tender, and subtle flavors. Just look at the photo.  By the time I let it cool a bit, and grabbed my camera it was nearly half gone.   I’m glad they love it, but give a grandma a break!  The flavor compares to a milder-tasting Banana Bread, with a hint of something else, but nobody ever knows what it is.  Perfect for people that don’t think they’re fans of Zucchini Bread.  Personally, I love Zucchini Bread far and above Banana Bread, but to each his own.  Give this a try!  I make it in my Ninja, but if you’d rather use your mixer, hand-grate the Zucchini, and then follow the rest of Preparation Instructions as written.

INGREDIENTS:  Yields 1 Loaf

2 over-ripe Bananas (about 1 cup+ 2 TBSP)

1 cup + 3 TBSP Zucchini

1 stick Butter at room temperature, plus more for greasing the pan

1 cup Sugar

2 large Eggs

1 teaspoon Baking Soda

½ tsp Salt

1 ½ tsp Cinnamon

1 ½ tsp Pure Vanilla Extract

1 cup + 2 TBSP unbleached AP Flour (often I do half White and half Whole Wheat)

OPTIONAL:  Toasted Walnuts, Dates, Raisins, Chocolate Chips

PREPARATION:

     This is a quick bread and only takes a few minutes to prepare.  Preheat oven to 350° F.

     Peel most of the skin off the Zucchini and cut the ends off.  In a food processor, process the zucchini until very fine. (or use a hand grater).  Add Bananas and pulse until well incorporated.  Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.

     In the same processor (or mixer bowl), cream Butter and Sugar until well mixed.  Add Eggs, Vanilla, Baking Soda, Salt, and Cinnamon.  Beat well.  Add Banana/Zucchini mixture and mix until incorporated.

     Add Flour and mix only until blended.  Add Optional Ingredients.  Stir or Pulse until evenly distributed.

     Pour Batter into prepared pan. Bake for 50 ish minutes.  Use toothpick test for doneness. Cool 10 min, and turn out on rack to finish cooling.

     This bread freezes beautifully.  Wrap in plastic wrap, and then aluminum foil.                                                                                                                                                                                               

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2020

Chicken and Rice (Tacos or Burritos)

Look t this filling! Yum!

     Mexican food YOUR WAY!  This was so good and so easy, and you don’t have to turn the oven on.  Everyone loved it.  Some wanted Tacos, others wanted Burritos, so I made both.  Unfortunately, there were no leftovers.  Customize however you’d like.  Maybe add some Corn.  Yes!  I should have added Corn.  What was I thinking?

INGREDIENTS:

3 cups Chicken Broth

¼ tsp Cumin

½ tsp Pepper

1 cup uncooked Rice

1 large Onion, chopped

1-2 Jalapenos, chopped

2 TBSP Garlic, chopped

1/3 – ½ cup Mini Sweet Pepper or Bell Peppers, chopped

Juice of half a Lime

1 ½ – 2 lbs Chicken Breasts

1 TBSP Butter

1 can Black Beans, drained

½ cup Salsa

Tortilla or Taco Shells

Additional Seasonings to taste:  Onion Powder, Smoked Paprika, Chipotle Chili Pepper, Cilantro

Corn.  Put some Corn in it!  Can’t believe I didn’t think of it sooner.

PREPARATION:

     In a medium saucepan, bring Chicken Broth, Cumin, and Pepper to a simmer.  Add 1 cup Rice.  Cover and simmer 15 minutes.

    In a large skillet, sauté Onion, Jalapeno, Garlic, and Mini Sweet Peppers. While the Veggies are cooking, season the Chicken Breasts if they are thick, slice them horizontally.  Sprinkle Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Smoked Paprika, and Chipotle Chili Pepper on top and bottom of each Breast. Let rest.

     When Veggies are tender, remove from skillet and add to pan with Rice.  Stir to blend.  Preheat the same skillet, drizzling Olive Oil and 1 TBSP Butter on the bottom.  Over medium heat, sear Chicken on both sides, then turn heat down and continue to cook until chicken is no longer pink in the middle.  Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces, long strips, or shred.  Add the Rice Mixture, Black Beans, Salsa, and a big handful or two of frozen Corn.  Simmer covered on low heat for about 10 minutes.  If the liquid boils out, add additional Chicken Broth or water.  At any point, add the Lime Juice. Taste.

  That’s your filling!  You can add the filling and maybe some Colby and Jack cheese.  Roll up Burrito-style and bake for 15-20 minutes.  -OR- serve the filling Taco style with shredded Lettuce, Tomato, Red Onion, additional chopped Jalapenos, grated Mexican style Cheese.  Serve with Sour Cream, Guacamole, Pico de Gallo, Salsa, etc.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2020

My Favorite Goulash

     There are certain foods we call comfort foods, I consider Goulash one of them.  It’s simple, pretty quick to make, and something you can easily make after a long day without having to stand over the stove.  I LOVE to add Cabbage to mine.  I might be the only one that does it, but it adds something that I really like.  Leftovers are great!

INGREDIENTS:

1 ½ lbs ground Beef, or ¾ lb Beef and ¾ lb Ground Turkey

¼ – 1/3 cup Celery, Chopped

¼ – 1/3 cup Bell Pepper, mixed colors, chopped

3/4 cup Onion, chopped

3-4 cloves Garlic, chopped

1 ½ cups Water

¾ cup Beef Broth

28 oz can Diced Tomatoes

8 oz Spaghetti Sauce

¼ cup Apple Sauce

1 Bay Leaf

1 tsp Italian Seasoning

Salt and Pepper

½ tsp Crushed Red Pepper

1 ½ cups Elbow Macaroni, Farfalle, or Ziti

8 oz Grated Italian Cheese Blend

OPTIONAL:  1 – ½ cups Cabbage, shredded

     In a large skillet, brown Ground Beef until pink.  Drain most of the grease.  Add Celery, Peppers, Onion, and Garlic.  Cook another 3-4 minutes.

     Add Water, Beef Broth, Diced Tomatoes, Spaghetti Sauce, Applesauce, Bay Leaf, Italian Seasoning, Salt and Pepper, and Crushed Red Pepper.  Add Cabbage now if using.  Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

     Add uncooked Pasta and 1 cup Cheese.  Cover, and simmer until Pasta is done (20-30 minutes).  Stir occasionally and make sure the Pasta isn’t soaking up all the liquid.  If it does, add a bit more water.  Remove Bay Leaf.  Sprinkle remaining Cheese over the top.  Cover until melted.  Serve. If it is a cool day, pop it under the broiler until the Cheese is bubbly and browned.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2020

New! Mediterranean-Style Salsa

Mediterranean-Style Salsa, by Chew Wanna Eat?

     This Mediterranean-Style Salsa is quick to throw together, travels well, and can be made ahead of time.  Excellent with Doritos or Scoops!!!  Try it with Pita Chips, Pita Bread, or Toasted Tortilla Shells.  Add it as a Topping when serving Burritos, Chimichangas, or in place of Pico de Gallo. 

INGREDIENTS:  Yields a little over a quart

1 (15 ounce) can sweet corn, drained

1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 can Kidney Beans, drained

2-3 cloves Garlic, chopped

1 ¼ cup Vidalia onion, diced (OR scallions)

1 cup fresh Tomatoes, chopped   

1/4 cup + 1 TBSP olive oil

1/3 cup cider vinegar

3 TBSP sugar 

½ tsp Black Pepper

1 cup feta cheese, crumbled (1 small container)

PREPARATION:

Add Olive Oil, Cider Vinegar, Sugar, and Pepper in a medium bowl.  Whisk it.  Add remaining Ingredients.  Stir, cover, and refrigerate for at least an hour. 

Taste it!  Make sure you have enough Garlic and Vinegar.  Some palates prefer more than this recipe calls for.  Keep in mind that the Olive Oil will set up a little after being refrigerated for a long time.  Allow it to warm up for a good 15 minutes, stirring here and there.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2020

No-Bake Banana Split Cake

No-Bake Banana Split Cake

     Here’s my newest creation.  No-Bake Banana Split Cake.  It’s very good, and simple to make! No fuss, no muss.  One bowl, one beater, and a spatula.  Kids will go crazy over it, trust me.  I’m just a big kid and I snuck a piece way before dinner.  Well?  I had to try it, didn’t I?

     A couple of fun facts:  The inventor of Ice Cream Sundaes (1892) is credited to a druggist by the name of Chester Platt who hailed from Ithaca, N.Y.  It was common in those days to have a soda fountain, Ice Cream counter in pharmacies.  Cornell students loved them and spread the word until ice cream shops near and wide began to sell Sundaes.

     In 1904 a 23-year-old student at the University of Pittsburgh worked as an apprentice pharmacist.  David “Dog” Strickler was challenged to make something different.  He came up with a split Banana, a scoop each of Strawberry, Chocolate, and Vanilla Ice Cream.  He added the Syrups, Whipped Cream, and a Cherry.  And there you have a Banana Split. *

Variations:  If you’d like to vary the topping, or pudding flavors, feel free.  You can do topping sections of the cake with one flavor, or mix them all up.  Get creative!  Other than Hot Fudge, Pineapple, Strawberry or Caramel would be awesome! You can also vary the crust by using the crushed Vanilla Wafer Crust or regular golden Graham Crackers.  Go crazy!

INGREDIENTS:   Yield 9” x 13” pan – Feel free to cut the recipe in half.

2 small (3.4 oz) packages of Instant Vanilla or French Vanilla Pudding

2 ¾ cups milk

8 oz. Cool Whip, thawed and divided

Chocolate Graham Crackers (2 sleeves)

2 Large Bananas, coarsely chopped

¼ Cup Hot Fudge Sauce

Maraschino Cherries for Garnish

OPTIONAL:  Crushed Peanuts

PREPARATION:

      In a mixer bowl, beat Pudding and Milk on low speed for about 3 minutes, stopping once to scrape bowl and beater.  Add approximately ¾ of the thawed Cool Whip, reserving about 1 ½ cups for garnish.  Beat only until thoroughly mixed in. 

     9” x 13” pan, no need for greasing.  Layer Graham Crackers to cover bottom of pan.  You’ll have to cut a few in order to avoid any bare spots. 

    Pour half of Pudding mixture on top of the Graham Crackers.  Evenly spread all the chopped Bananas on top.  I used a large spoon and a butter knife.

     Place remaining Pudding mixture on top and spread evenly.  Warm Hot Fudge Sauce in the microwave (Try 15 seconds, stir, and heat again) so it can be drizzled, and then go ahead and drizzle over the Pudding mixture. 

     Fit a large star tip on a Pastry Bag and fill the bag with the remaining Cool Whip.  Squeeze Bag to make designs on the cake.  If you’re using Peanuts, sprinkle them on now.  You can do just half the cake if you want.  Place a Maraschino Cherry on top of each.  Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2020

Quick Homemade Baked Beans (4 Ways)

     We love Baked Beans, and I have never found a recipe that was just the right blend of sweet and savory.  I had no choice but to make my own.  We’re very happy with how they turned out – not too sweet, not too spicy, they’re just right!  I included three variations at the bottom of the recipe.  One is a Spicy-Style, the second is BBQ-Style, and the third is Hobo-Style.

INGREDIENTS:  YIELDS 4-5 Servings

One 15.5 oz can Great Northern Beans, drained

3-4 slices Bacon

¼ cup Sweet Onion, chopped

1 Sweet Mini Pepper, chopped

2 TBSP Brown Sugar

2 TBSP Molasses

1 rounded TBSP Spicy Brown Mustard

1 TBSP Apple Cider Vinegar

1 TBSP Worcestershire Sauce

¼ cup Ketchup

3 TBSP Water

PREPARATION:

     In a small Cast Iron or other oven-safe pan, cook Bacon until crisp.  Remove Bacon and reserve 1 TBSP Bacon Grease in the pan. 

     Sauté Onions and Mini Sweet Pepper until soft.  Add remaining Ingredients and cook for 5 minutes over low/medium heat.  Add Bacon.

     Cover with Aluminum Foil and bake at 375° F for 30 minutes.  Remove Foil and bake an additional 5 minutes.  Serve.

Like em spicy?  When Sautéing Onions and Sweet Pepper, add 2 chopped Jalapeno Peppers and a few dashes of Cayenne Pepper.

Rather have BBQ style?  Replace the Ketchup with BBQ sauce.

Want em hearty?  Cook the Bacon as directed above.  Remove from pan along with most of the grease.  Add ½ lb Ground Beef and cook about halfway, chopping it as you go.  Add the Onions and Sweet Mini Pepper.  Continue cooking until Beef is no longer pink.  If a lot of grease remains, drain it.  Continue with recipe as directed above.

By Tika 6/19/2020

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2020

Quick Steak and Mushrooms

Steak, Mushrooms, Onions, and Gravy

     Looking for an enjoyable, yet super quick meal?  Even for hearty appetites, this is totally satisfying.  And the big surprise?  It’s inexpensive!  Yep.  I used something called Sizzler Steaks.  They were designed probably for Philadelphia Cheese Steaks, but you know me.  Gotta mess around with everything.  So, here’s what I did:

INGREDIENTS: Yields 5-6 Servings

1 ½ – 1 ¾ LBS Steak Sizzlers (or very thinly cut Steak)

Fresh Mushrooms (As many as you want)

1 Large Onion, Sliced from top to bottom into strips

Butter and Olive Oil for Frying

½ can Beef Broth

2 TBSP Corn Starch

Salt/Pepper

Optional Steak Marinade:  1/3 cup Low Sodium Soy Sauce, 3 – 5 cloves Garlic, chopped, 1/3 cup Olive Oil, 1” piece of Ginger Root (peeled and chopped), 1 ½ – 2 TBSP Honey, Black Pepper, ¼ cup Onion, chopped

PREPARATION:

     I marinated the Steak for a few hours, but not necessary.  I love my Asian flavors, so I did it.  If you don’t want Asian flavors, you could marinate in a bit of Olive Oil, a couple TBSP Cider Vinegar, Garlic, Onion, Salt and Pepper. 

     Preheat a 10” – 12” cast iron skillet.  Add a pat of Butter and a TBSP or so of Olive Oil.  Cook the Mushrooms and Onions until done to your liking.  Remove to a bowl. 

     Add a little more Butter and Oil, and drain the Steak, reserving the Marinade if you used it.  Fry two Steaks at a time over medium/high heat.  It only takes a minute or so on each side.  Then remove and just stack them up on your cutting board or a plate.  Continue until all the Steaks are cooked. 

     Leave the drippings in the pan, add ½ can Beef Broth, reserved Marinade, 2 TBSP Corn Starch.  Cook until thickened the way you like it.  Add Steak and Vegetables just long enough to heat through.

     Serve over Egg Noodles, Linguine, plain Rice, Fried Rice, or Mashed Potatoes.

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Pineapple and Pork Fried Rice

     Sometimes one of my new recipes makes me want to shout from a mountain top how delicious it is.  A week or so ago I created Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp and the family went crazy over it.  Last night I did something new with Pork Chops and they we SOOOO good!  I had 3 left over because we also served BBQ Ribs and the kids went for the Ribs instead of the Pork Chops.  So, I put my leftover Asian Pork Chops in the fridge and thought all night about what to do with the leftovers.  Bob bought 2 pineapples last week for $1.00 each.  I cut them up and froze them in individual packages.  I also had some leftover Rice in the fridge.  Unfortunately for me, someone got into the leftover Pork Chops and I only had 1 ½ Chops left.  You might want to double the recipe if you’re feeding a family.

     As I began to cook, my mind started doing its thing, and I had to start taking notes because I wanted kind of a Sweet, Spicy result.  Then once I started cooking, I added additional ingredients.  The end result is plenty spicy with just ½ tsp Sriracha Sauce. Our newest Westover Leftover!

Here’s what I came up with:    

INGREDIENTS:

2 cup cooked long grain rice

3 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled

¼ cup Celery, chopped

1 large Scallion, chopped

1 large clove Garlic, chopped

2 TBSP Olive Oil

2 TBSP Low Sodium Soy Sauce

1 tsp Hoisin

 1 ½ tsp Rice Vinegar

1/8 tsp Ginger Powder Or 3/4 tsp fresh grated Ginger

½ tsp Sriracha Chili Sauce

1 TBSP Sake

1 tsp dried Cilantro Leaves or use fresh is you have it

½ cup +/- Leftover Pork, cubed

2-3 TBSP fresh Pineapple

OPTIONAL:  Mushrooms, Carrots, Peas, Asparagus, Broccoli

     In a large skillet, fry bacon until crisp, crumble and set aside.  Pour off grease, leaving 1 TBSP behind in the pan.

     In the reserved Bacon Grease, sauté Celery, and Scallions for 2 minutes over low heat.  Add Garlic and sauté 1 minute more.  Add Olive Oil, Soy, Hoisin, Rice Vinegar, Ginger Powder, Chili Sauce, and Sake to the Veggies.   Stir over low heat just until everything is well combined.

     Add the Rice and give it a few minutes to crisp up a little.  You may want to turn the heat up.

     Add Cilantro, Pork, and Bacon.  Saute until heated through.  Add Pineapple, stir and serve.

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By Tika for CHEW WANNA EAT? © 2020

This is a double batch!