What’s For Dinner Week #3

progressive dinner 2012too

Cream of Potato and Bacon Soup

This is one of my son’s favorite soups. It is easy and inexpensive to make but so satisfying on a cold winter night.

Recipe: Wash, peel and cut about 5 or 6 medium potatoes into small cubes. In a medium saucepan sauté a small thinly sliced onion in a TBSP of oil until translucent. Add potatoes, 2 cubes of chicken bouillon and 6 cups of water to the pan with the onions. Bring to a boil and simmer on low until potatoes are tender.

In another medium saucepan melt a stick of butter then add about a ¼ cup of flour to the melted butter. Whisk until it turns to a paste like consistency add more flour if needed. Whisk for about a minute making sure it does not stick to the bottom of the pan. Next slowly add milk to the pan whisking the whole time. I never really measure this but it should be thick, smooth and without lumps so approximately 2-3 cups of milk. You just made your cream for the cream of potato soup!

Add the cream mixture into the potato soup pot stirring it gently. The whole soup should thicken nicely.

Serve with crumbled fried bacon on top. We also have added corn to the soup and topped it with cheddar cheese too.

Chicken Fajitas

Chicken Fajitas are super easy. I use the fajita packets in the taco section of the grocery store for seasoning. Grill or pan fry seasoned chicken breasts. Add thinly sliced onions and multicolored sweet peppers to the pan until just softened. Don’t overcook the veggies let them be slightly crisp not too mushy.

Use a soft taco that has been warmed in the microwave or oven. Fill the taco with the veggies and the sliced chicken, top with sour cream. Seasoned rice and refried beans make a great side dish.

Chicken and Biscuits

All I do for chicken and biscuits is boil split chicken breasts in a stockpot with thinly sliced onion and small chunked carrots and a few bouillon cubes. I add fresh sprigs of parsley and thyme when I have them in my garden otherwise dried herbs will do. When the chicken is cooked enough to almost fall apart remove the chicken to a plate to rest and cool. Add frozen peas at this point if you wish.

Make your favorite biscuits whether they are a refrigerator biscuit like Grands or a Bisquick biscuit.

To thicken the broth, combine about a cup of the broth and enough flour to make a thin liquidy paste.

Slowly pour the thickener back into the broth stirring gently. Bring to a boil then add the chicken back in after picking it off the bones. Pour over biscuits and enjoy!

Homemade Mac and Cheese

Everyone has a different recipe they like for homemade mac and cheese. I like to use whatever kind of cheese I have building up in the fridge like shredded taco cheese, a chunk of cheddar and some extra sleeves of American that haven’t been used yet.

I think one of the secrets is to slightly overcook the macaroni so it’s softer when it goes into the oven to bake.

The cheese sauce I do is pretty simple but I don’t measure anything either. I put a stick of butter into the bottom of a medium saucepan and melt it. I add milk and the cheese until all is melted together and hot and then I pour it over and stir it into the macaroni. Salt and pepper to taste and add any goodies to make it gourmet if you like.

Bake in a 350 degree oven until hot and bubbly and there is a slight crust on the top.

Chicken Spiedies

I first ate a Chicken Spiedie at our favorite out of town hang out, the American Hotel in Lima, NY. It was first created however, in nearby Binghamton, NY. My husband loves these things but unlike the recipe below we like ours with melted mozzarella and caramelized onions too.

Serves 6

The chicken cubes are grilled so if you don’t have a grill pan or don’t want to start your outdoor grill in the winter you can use a cast iron pan and brown them over high heat.

1/2 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves , minced
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons grated zest plus 1 tablespoon juice from 1 lemon
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds)
6 (6-inch) sub rolls , slit partially open lengthwise

MAKE SAUCES Combine oil, garlic, basil, oregano, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and pepper flakes in large bowl. Transfer 2 tablespoons oil mixture to separate bowl and whisk in mayonnaise, vinegar, and lemon juice; refrigerate. (Sauces can be refrigerated, covered, for 2 days.)

PREP CHICKEN Prick chicken breasts all over with fork, cut into 1¼-inch chunks, and transfer to bowl with remaining oil mixture. Refrigerate, covered, for 30 minutes or up to 3 hours.

GRILL CHICKEN Remove chicken from marinade and thread onto six 12-inch metal skewers. Grill chicken over hot fire, covered and turning frequently, until lightly charred and cooked through, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer chicken to sub rolls or bread, remove skewers, and drizzle with mayonnaise mixture. Serve with fries.

Here is a link to this recipe copied from My Sister’s Kitchen –  Chicken Spiedie Recipe.

Build your own Sliders

Sliders are basically two bite burgers like the original White Castle burgers. And we love them!

Have fun with topping like lettuce, tomato, cheeses, bacon, mayo, mustard, avocado, onion, relish, ketchup, pickles, etc.

Grab some mini rolls, some lean ground beef and some chips and you are all set.

Leftover Night

Take the night off from cooking and enjoy those leftovers!


For a printer friendly version here is a link to the original document What’s for dinner week 3  -MM

Published by marymargaretripley

I am a professional Bakery Manager at a privately owned grocery store. I also owned my own bakery for over four years. I have been baking for 15+ years professionally. I also teach canning and preserving classes and have been gardening since I was 5 years old. I live in Western, NY with my husband, teenage son, Bernie the Cat and Muffins the Hamster.

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