Dinner with the Kids

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Baked Ziti
Baked ziti is a baked casserole dish made with ziti macaroni and sauce characteristic of Italian-American cuisine. It is similar to pasta al forno.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add ziti pasta, and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes; drain.
  2. In a large skillet, brown onion and ground beef over medium heat. Add spaghetti sauce, and simmer 15 minutes.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. Layer as follows: 1/2 of the ziti, Provolone cheese, sour cream, 1/2 sauce mixture, remaining ziti, mozzarella cheese and remaining sauce mixture. Top with grated Parmesan cheese.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cheeses are melted.
Recipe Notes

TIP - Aluminum foil can be used to keep food moist, cook it evenly, and make clean-up easier.

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Red Beans and Rice
Red beans and rice is an emblematic dish of Louisiana Creole cuisine traditionally made on Mondays with red beans, vegetables, spices and pork bones as left over from Sunday dinner, cooked together slowly in a pot and served over rice.
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 185 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 185 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Rinse beans, and then soak in a large pot of water overnight.
  2. In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Cook onion, bell pepper, garlic, and celery in olive oil for 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. Rinse beans, and transfer to a large pot with 6 cups water. Stir cooked vegetables into beans. Season with bay leaves, cayenne pepper, thyme, sage, parsley, and Cajun seasoning. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for 2 1/2 hours.
  4. Stir sausage into beans, and continue to simmer for 30 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare the rice. In a saucepan, bring water and rice to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Serve beans over steamed white rice.
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Chicken Fried Rice
Fried rice is a dish of cooked rice that has been stir-fried in a wok or a frying pan and, usually, mixed with other ingredients, such as eggs, vegetables, and meat, and as such, often served as a complete dish.
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and saute until soft, then add chicken and 2 tablespoons soy sauce and stir-fry for 5 to 6 minutes.
  2. Stir in carrots, celery, red bell pepper, pea pods and green bell pepper and stir-fry another 5 minutes. Then add rice and stir thoroughly.
  3. Finally, stir in scrambled eggs and 1/3 cup soy sauce, heat through and serve hot.
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Mac and Cheese
Traditional macaroni and cheese is a casserole baked in the oven.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Cook macaroni according to the package directions. Drain.
  2. In a saucepan, melt butter or margarine over medium heat. Stir in enough flour to make a roux. Add milk to roux slowly, stirring constantly. Stir in cheeses, and cook over low heat until cheese is melted and the sauce is a little thick. Put macaroni in large casserole dish, and pour sauce over macaroni. Stir well.
  3. Melt butter or margarine in a skillet over medium heat. Add breadcrumbs and brown. Spread over the macaroni and cheese to cover. Sprinkle with a little paprika.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes. Serve.
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Lasagna
Traditional lasagne is made by interleaving layers of pasta with layers of sauce, made with ricotta or mozzarella cheese, tomato sauce, and various meats (e.g., ground beef, pork or chicken).
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 150 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 150 mins
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  4. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Dinner for One

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Broccoli and Chicken Stir-Fry
Simple and quick stir-fry. Best served with rice.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Stir soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger, and red pepper flakes together in a bowl to dissolve sugar into the liquid. Mix water and cornstarch together in a small bowl; stir with a whisk until cornstarch dissolves completely.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over high heat. Fry chicken and onion in hot oil until the chicken is no longer pink in the center and the onion is tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir broccoli with the chicken and onion; saute until the broccoli is hot, about 5 minutes. Push the chicken and vegetables mixture to the side of the skillet.
  3. Heat oil in a large skillet over high heat. Fry chicken and onion in hot oil until the chicken is no longer pink in the center and the onion is tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir broccoli with the chicken and onion; saute until the broccoli is hot, about 5 minutes. Push the chicken and vegetables mixture to the side of the skillet.
Recipe Notes

Tip - Aluminum foil helps keep food moist, ensures it cooks evenly, keeps leftovers fresh, and makes clean-up easy.

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Chicken and Mushrooms
Simple and delicious dish using only chicken and mushrooms.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  2. Season chicken on all sides with salt and ground black pepper.
  3. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in an ovenproof skillet. Place chicken skin-side down in skillet and cook until browned, about 5 minutes.
  4. Turn chicken over; stir mushrooms with a pinch of salt into skillet. Increase heat to high; cook, stirring mushrooms occasionally, until mushrooms shrink slightly, about 5 minutes.
  5. Transfer skillet to the preheated oven and cook until chicken is no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear, 15 to 20 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read 165 degrees F (74 degrees C). Transfer chicken breasts to a plate and loosely tent with foil; set aside.
  6. Set skillet on the stovetop over medium-high heat; cook and stir mushrooms until brown bits start to form on the bottom of the pan, about 5 minutes. Pour water into the skillet, and bring to a boil while scraping the browned bits off of the bottom of the pan. Cook until water is reduced by half, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  7. Stir in any accumulated juices from the chicken into the skillet. Stir butter into mushroom mixture, stirring constantly until butter is completely melted and incorporated.
  8. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon mushroom sauce over chicken and serve.
Recipe Notes

Tip - Aluminum foil can be used to keep food moist, cook it evenly, and make clean-up easier.

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One Pan Orecchiette Pasta
This delicious orecchiette pasta recipe only has a handful of ingredients, is very cheap to make, and most importantly: only uses one pan or pot for the entire procedure.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat olive oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir onion with a pinch of salt in hot oil until onion is soft and golden, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir sausage into onions; cook and stir until sausage is broken up and browned, 5 to 7 minutes.
  2. Pour 1 1/2 cups chicken broth into sausage mixture and bring to a boil while scraping the browned bits of food off of the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Add orecchiette pasta; cook and stir pasta in hot broth, adding remaining broth when liquid is absorbed, until pasta is cooked through and most of the broth is absorbed, about 15 minutes.
  3. Stir arugula into pasta-sausage mixture until arugula wilts. Ladle pasta into bowls and dust with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
Recipe Notes

Tip - Aluminum foil helps keep food moist, ensures it cooks evenly, keeps leftovers fresh, and makes clean-up easy.

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Black Bean Breakfast Bowl
A quick breakfast (for dinner?), especially if you're trying to avoid carbs!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat olive oil in a small pan over medium heat. Cook and stir eggs until eggs are set, 3 to 5 minutes.
  2. Place black beans in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat on High in the microwave until warm, about 1 minute.
  3. Divide warmed black beans between two bowls.
  4. Top each bowl with scrambled eggs, avocado, and salsa. Season with salt and black pepper.
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Basic Chicken Salad
Chicken salad is any salad with chicken as a main ingredient. Other common ingredients may include mayonnaise, hard-boiled egg, celery, onion, pepper, pickles and a variety of mustards.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Servings
serving
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Place almonds in a frying pan. Toast over medium-high heat, shaking frequently. Watch carefully, as they burn easily.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together mayonnaise, lemon juice, and pepper. Toss with chicken, almonds, and celery.