Monday, August 15, 2011

Meatless Monday: Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

The Count whipped these up for us last week and they were so delicious!  I could eat them every week! They  tasted great reheated over the next couple days for lunches too. They are without a doubt the best vegetarian stuffed peppers I have ever had!
Vegetarian Stuffed Pepper Recipe
Makes 8 Stuffed Peppers

4 Large Green Bell Peppers
15 MorningStar Farms Veggie Sausage Patties
1 Tbsp Italian Seasoning
1 tsp Crushed Red Peppers (Optional)
1 tsp of Salt
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
3 Cloves of fresh Garlic (Minced)
2 Cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
¼ C of Grated Parmesan Cheese
2 C Marinara Sauce

Wash the peppers and remove their stems. Cut them in half from top to bottom and remove their seeds and veins. Boil the peppers in a large pot for 7-10 minutes, until slightly tender. Remove from the pot and drain. Microwave the sausage patties for 1 minute on each side. Then run the patties through a food processor to form a consistency similar to ground beef. In a large skillet, add 2 Tbsp of Olive Oil and sauté the garlic. Add the crumbled sausage patties and toss. After a couple of minutes, add the Italian Seasoning, Red Pepper, and Salt. Continue to sauté for a few minutes. Add the Parmesan Cheese and toss for a minute. Add 1 Cup of the Mozzarella Cheese and toss until the cheese has melted. Add the Marinara sauce and cook for another minute, then remove the skillet from heat.

Preheat the oven to 350. On a baking sheet, greased with Olive Oil, arrange the Peppers with the open side up, creating small bowls. Stuff the sausage mixture into each of the peppers. Top each evenly with the remaining 1 Cup of Mozzarella. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Muffin Tin Monday

Have you tried Muffin Tin Meals for your little ones yet?  I've seen lots of posts about them all around Blog Land, but hadn't tried them until recently.  I only had full-size muffin tins (with 12 cups), so I purchase four 6-cups muffin tins at The Dollar Tree especially for muffin tin meals.  The cups in the tins are regular size, but the tins themselves are small (just six cups).  At first it was a little bit of a challenge for me to come up with six healthy, balanced servings of kid-friendly foods, but it gets easier and my girls really love them!

Here are a few of the combinations we've tried so far:
1. Morning Star Farms Chik'n Nuggets
2. Carrots
3. Raisins
5.Keebler Club Minis Multi-Grain Crackers
6. Sharp Cheddar Cheese

1. Annie's Bunny Grahams Friends
2. Blackberries
3. Chobani Blueberry 0% Greek Yogurt
4. Nature's Promise Organic Unsweetened Applesauce
5. Strawberries
6. Plain Quaker Oatmeal w/Raisins Added

1. Mashed Potatoes
2. Snaps Peas
3. Watermelon
4. Roasted Red Pepper Hummus
5. Baby Carrots
6. Mozzarella String Cheese

1. Chobani Blueberry 0% Greek Yogurt
2. Post Banana Nut Crunch Cereal and Milk
3. Grapes
4. Banana
5. Raspberry
6. Craisins

And here's Zazu cheesing like a crazy baby in anticipation of her muffin tin breakfast:
Can you tell she loves them?

Monday, August 1, 2011

Meatless Monday: Mashed Potato Wreath

My blog has been completely neglected lately while I've been off enjoying the summer, but I'm back now with a super yummy Meatless Monday Recipe.  The Count and I collaborated on this recipe and we both loved the result!  This recipe was inspired by the Pizza Skins (without bacon) at Uno's Chicago Grill.  Sadly, they closed the Uno's near us, so the creation of this recipe was an attempt (a delicious attempt) to satisfy my Pizza Skin craving.
This is some serious comfort food.


3lbs of Red Skinned Potatoes (Peeled)
3/4 Stick of butter or margarine
2 Cups of Sour Cream plus extra for garnish
Garlic Salt to taste
2 Cans Reduced Fat Crescent Rolls
8 oz Shredded Cheddar Cheese

Mashed Potatoes 
This is a two for one recipe, because these may possibly be the best mashed potatoes ever! Peel the Potatoes and cut the bigger ones in half. Place the Potatoes in a large pot and completely submerge them in warm water. Bring the water to a boil and boil the potatoes for 15 to 20 minutes. It is important not to overcook the potatoes as they will become gluey. You can tell they are done when a small fork will pass through with almost no resistance. Remove the Potatoes and place them in a strainer.

While the Potatoes are still hot, place them in the stand mixer with the butter. Use the wire whisk attachment and beat the potatoes until the butter is mixed in completely. (This could also be done with a hand mixer, but mine is broken and I love my stand mixer.) Then add the sour cream in intervals until the potatoes reach the right consistency. Add garlic salt to taste and set them aside. 

The Wreath
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Arrange the crescent roll triangles on a pizza stone in a sunshine sort of shape like this:

Use a Baker's Roller or your fingers to press the center of the circle together.  It doesn't have to be perfect.

Scoop the mashed potatoes onto your wreath like this:

Cover the top on the potatoes with the shredded cheese.

Fold all of the points of your sun into the center of your wreath and use your fingers to press the points into the bottom layer of dough in along the edge of your center circle.

Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden brown. Serve with a side of sour cream and a nice salad!

If your pizza stone is well-used and "ugly" like mine, you can transfer your wreath to a nice serving platter if you want or you can just dig in!

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