Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Chunky beef stew

Man, it's soooo cold in my house! Chicago winters are brutal, especially in a drafty home. That's why I always try to keep busy in the kitchen by baking cookies or huge entrees. There are some days when I don't have time to cook when I get home from work. That's when I use a crock pot. I get up a little early in the morning and start getting the ingredients ready to toss into the pot. While Becca and I are at work our dinner is cooking. My chunky beef stew is one of my favorites to make. I use lots of baby carrots and potatoes in this.

Chunky Beef Stew

  • 3 cups of vegetable juice (like V8 or tomato juice)
  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 lbs of stew meat, mostly BEEF!!!
  • 2 large russet potatoes or 5 small red potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 3 large carrots, peeled and chopped, or a small bag of baby carrots
  • 1 small yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup of ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons or cubes of beef flavored instant buillon
  • 2 tsp of black pepper


  1. Make sure you use a liner for your slow cooker! So much easier for clean up.
  2. Pour vegetable juice, ketchup, and water into the slow cooker.
  3. Add bouillon, beef, potatoes, carrots, onion, and pepper. Stir gently. 
  4. After stirring ingredients together, put lid on slow cooker.
  5. Set slow cooker on LOW for 8 to 9 hours OR HIGH for 4 to 5 hours, until beef is tender.

Bon appetit!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Bacon chicken

Happy New Year my lovelies!!!

To start off the new  year I want to share you a recipe from my boyfriend, Vince. He found this recipe a few months ago. He wanted to try his hand at cooking by himself one evening. It took me a while to trust him with cooking in my kitchen due to a few bad experiences with mashed potatoes, cheesy noodles, and couscous. But, I figured that he's going to have to learn some time and at least he's willing to try until he finds something that he's most comfortable with. So I told him to find a chicken recipe that he'd want to try. Sure enough he did. He tweaked it a bit to make it his own. This recipe has become a huge favorite amongst myself and friends. Vince is kind enough to share his favorite recipe on my blog :) Enjoy!

Bacon Chicken

  • 10 slices bacon
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 6 to 8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (this depends on size)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. pepper
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Turn on oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook bacon in 12" skillet until crisp, about 4-6 minutes. Crumble bacon and set aside. Pour bacon grease out of skillet, but don't wash or wipe it. 
  3. Add butter and olive oil to skillet. 
  4. Saute chicken breasts in this mixture over medium heat, turning once, until chicken is cooked and no longer pink in center. This usually takes about 7 mins on both sides.
  5. Place chicken in ungreased 12x8" baking dish.
  6. Cook onion and garlic in drippings remaining in skillet until softened, then stir in salt, pepper, and cooked bacon. 
  7. Spoon over chicken breasts and sprinkle with cheese. 
  8. Bake for 10-15 minutes until cheese is melted.