Budget friendly meal · dinner in 30 minutes · Fish · Healthy Eating · main dish · Uncategorized

Dijon Crusted Fish

Most times if I ask guests that are coming to my home for a meal if they have any foods they don’t enjoy eating, they will often say fish. I get that because some recipes for fish are just stinky and bland.

But the recipe I’m sharing today is so good that it would make a great restaurant menu item. The ingredients are simple, but add incredible flavor and texture to the fish. It is above ordinary for something that’s fixed at home. Like most fish recipes, this is super fast to pull together because it doesn’t require long in the oven, making this a great weeknight menu.

I served this with oven-roasted potatoes and a seven layer salad. It was a delicious meal! If you are a nominal fish fan, I hope you will try this great recipe from taste of home.

Dijon Crusted Fish

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons reduced-fat mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish – (I didn’t add this)
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 4 tilapia fillets (5 ounces each)
  • 1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons butter, melted

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°. Mix the first 4 ingredients and 1 tablespoon cheese. Place tilapia on a baling sheet coated with cooking spray; spread evenly with mayonnaise mixture.
  2. Toss bread crumbs with melted butter and remaining cheese; sprinkle over fillets. Bake until fish just begins to flake easily with a fork, 12-15 minutes.

Easy, fast and delicious!! I should also add, “healthy!” Its only 214 calories per filet! You might just being having fish mire often after trying this recipe!

dinner in 30 minutes · Pasta

Creamy Bow Tie Pasta With Italian Sausage

 I did it again!  I tried out a new recipe on guests!  I have a reputation for doing this, but it’s not on purpose!  I will sit down to plan my menu, and as I contemplate the night guests will be with us, I’ll consider what’s in the fridge or freezer.  Then it goes from there.  Soon I’m searching Pinterest for a recipe using those ingredients and there it is – a new menu item that sounds amazing!

In this case I was searching for a pasta recipe using Italian sausage because I had gotten a great deal at Kroger recently.

I’m happy to report that this recent recipe was successful in that it turned out as good as it sounded, and everyone loved it!  Mission accomplished, even if it was a bit risky!

I have said in the past that I’m not really a pasta lover, but it seems like that is changing, and it’s mostly because of some incredible recipes that I’ve tried!  I’ve learned that my favorite way to eat pasta is a dish made on the stove top and not baked in the oven after being prepared.  It leaves the pasta tender and the sauce creamy.  What’s not to love about that?  

Here’s the delicious recipe I found with my changes…

Creamy Bow Tie Pasta with Italian Sausage

  • 1 package (12 oz.) bow tie pasta
  • 1 pound mild Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (28 oz.) diced tomatoes, drained and coarsely chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups heavy cream – I used 3/4 2% milk and 3/4 C cream
  • 1 cup packed spinach leaves, cut into thin strips
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to package directions; drain. (I do NOT cook my pasta al dente when it’s not going to cook longer in the oven.)
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet crumble the sausage and add onion. Over medium-high heat until sausage cooked through and browned and onion is tender. Add garlic. Cook one minute. Add the tomatoes and cream/milk. Simmer until the mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. Add the spinach and cook an additional 3 minutes. Add the cooked pasta to the sauce.

You could lighten up this recipe by using all2% milk in place of the heavy cream.  I think you could also use half chicken stock and half milk.  I haven’t tried that yet, but it would still give a creamy sauce with less calories.  At any rate, this was delicious with a nice slice of French bread for soaking up the sauce!  Maybe not good table manners, but delicious!

What’s your favorite way to have pasta – Fresh from the stove top or baked in the oven? 

This is a great weeknight meal…and also a good one for company!

dinner in 30 minutes · Fast meal · Pasta

Quick Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce

If you need supper in a hurry, pasta is often a good option because it cooks so quickly. The recipe I’m sharing today came together in about 25 minutes, but it tastes like one of those dishes that took a long time to make! Oh my word, this is delicious!

The list of ingredients is small, too. I had all the ingredients on hand when I stumbled across this recipe. Pasta, sausage, tomatoes and some half and half all come together to make a satisfying and filling main dish! I can’t wait to make this again!

I found a recipe but tweaked it to our preferences. Here’s how I made it…

Pasta with Italian Sausage and Tomato Cream Sauce

Ingredients

  • 12 oz. pasta – I used what I had – Elbow, but Ziti or rigatoni would be perfect
  • 12 oz Italian sausage – I used mild
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup fat-free half and half
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach or frozen works too!
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt the water. Add the pasta and cook according to package instructions. While the pasta is cooking begin the sauce.
  • In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Brown the Italian sausage and the onion, saute until translucent. Add the garlic and saute another minute.
  • Add tomatoes, simmer and reduce the liquid by half.
  • Lower the heat, stir in the half and half, spinach, salt, pepper. Simmer until the cream is heated and the spinach is wilted. Add the Parmesan cheese and simmer until the sauce has thickened slightly.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Drain the pasta, add to the sauce and stir to combine.
  • Serve immediately.

This meal needs a nice piece of bread to go along with it. I served a dish of applesauce instead of salad. It was a wonderful, fast meal!

I’m not a big pasta fan, but this recipe might change that!

I hope you’ll make and enjoy this quick and delicious recipe!

Dinner · dinner in 30 minutes

So Many Tomatoes You Don’t Know What To Do?

If you have a garden or someone you know has one, it’s very possible you’ve been inundated with Tomatoes! I’m so blessed to have generous friends who share their bounty with me when my own Cherry Tomatoes quit producing.

I probably ended up with about 20 pounds of tomatoes last week, thanks to kind friends. My sister had told me about Ina Garten’s fabulous Cream of Fresh Tomato Soup and I knew I wanted to use my tomatoes to mix up a batch or two. I’m so glad I did! It’s super yummy!! I made a third batch and froze practically all of it. I did eat a small bowl for lunch and took a Quart to the friend who gave me her beautiful produce.Oh, if you love Cream of Tomato Soup, you need to make this! Just know this soup is in my freezer makes me excited about our fall lunches!

The next thing I made with all those tomatoes was this fresh salsa. I made two jars and it will just sit in the fridge and marinate for a number of hours and then disappear this week as we have chips and salsa and tacos. This recipe has a little honey in it for some sweetness, and a jalapeno for a little kick. Yum!

Here is the way I made the salsa recipe:

Fresh Salsa
4 or 5 red and/or yellow tomatoes, chopped
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 Jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
2 tsp honey
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp salt
Fresh black pepper

Mix all ingredients and let marinate in the refrigerator at least an hour.

I love fresh tomatoes on pizza! They can be Cherry Tomatoes or chopped up large tomatoes. This Two-Ingredient Pizza Dough recipe is my current go-to recipe!

One of the most savory tomato recipes I make is this Cheese Ravioli with Tomatoes. It’s a fast meal, but has so much flavor because of the roasted tomatoes. Oh, my goodness, I could eat this every week!

Lastly, there’s Tomato Pie. If you’re shaking your head, you’ve never tried it. I told someone recently that it’s like a grown-up BLT.

Tomato Pie

  • Baked pie crust
  • 1 Red Onion, sliced
  • 1 Tbl. Olive Oil
  • Cooked Bacon Crumbles (2 slices)
  • 2 Sliced Tomatoes
  • 1/3 C Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1/3 C Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 C Light Mayo
  • 1 tsp Basil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Saute’ onions in Olive oil. Place in baked pie shell. Place bacon crumbles on sliced tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, mix Mayo, cheeses and basil. Spread over tomatoes. Bake in 350 degree oven for 25 minutes or until lightly browned a hot.

When I made this last week, I also drizzled a LITTLE Balsamic reduction over the tomatoes. You can add that, too, if you want a depth of flavor!

This is so delicious, but don’t take my word for it. Use up those August tomatoes and make a Tomato Pie this week. I hope you’ll give some of the other tomato recipes a try as well! You’ll be in tomato heaven!

Who’s had Tomato Pie? Which of these recipes appeals most to you?

Dinner · dinner in 30 minutes · salad

Big Mac Salad

These hot August days sometimes turn my appetite away from heavy, hot foods to cold, refreshing salads. But when you need some protein, and you want more than a garden salad, what do you do?

You add ingredients to the salad that have the taste of a Big Mac without the heaviness or the calories of a burger! This Big Mac Salad is basically a deconstructed hamburger without the bun. But it’s hearty and delicious!

Here’s how you make it:

Big Mac Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Ground beef
  • 1 tsp Sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp Black pepper
  • 8 oz Romaine lettuce (or iceberg if desired)
  • 1 cup Tomatoes (chopped)
  • 3/4 cup Reduced Fat Cheddar cheese (shredded)
  • 1/2 cup Pickles (diced)

DRESSING

  • 1/2 cup Light Mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp Pickles (diced)
  • 2 tsp Mustard
  • 1 tsp White vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp Smoked paprika
  • 1 1/2 tbsp  sweetener of choice
  1. Brown ground beef, adding salt and pepper. Break beef up into small crumbles as it cooks.
  2. In a large bowl, add lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and pickles. Top with cooked ground beef. Top with dressing just before serving.
    You can also assemble each salad on the plates as I did in the photos here.
  3. For Dressing:
    Mix ingredients in a mason jar. Add warm water or oil to make it a pouring consistency .

This meal is also super fast and can be on the table in less than 30 minutes – probably faster than you could run to the local fast food restaurant and get served! It’s the perfect meal on a hot day, or a day when you want something delicious, but healthier than a hamburger!

What do you eat when it’s hot outside?