Beans and Rice

I tried off and on for years to make something we considered edible in the beans and rice category, and failed miserably every time. But when our family lived in Florida, a friend from the Dominican Republic came over and taught me to make her black beans and rice, along with a delicious chicken. Slowly, her recipe morphed into one that is totally shelf stable and our family loves it!  –Mellyn Continue reading

Chicken-Lentil Soup

We love soups for lunch and on chilly fall evenings. They’re easy to make out of just a few ingredients and are tasty next to a sandwich. I’ve also noticed that with soup on the side, we tend to eat fewer chips and crackers, as well. Although this soup has a dark color (from the lentils), its flavor is more like chicken noodle. If you’d like the color to match the flavor, just cook your lentils separately, and add them to your soup after draining off the cooking liquid. –Mellyn  Continue reading

Grandmommie’s Mexican Squash

I remember my great grandmother making this squash recipe at a large family gathering. I think it was the first time I tasted zucchini and liked it! Since then, I’ve developed quite an appetite for this prolific vegetable, and it’s on our table year round! We don’t use a lot of Velveeta at our house, but it stores reasonably well (for about 6 months at a time) and provides some variety when my kids get tired of the same veggies. –Mellyn  Continue reading

Twirly Italian Chicken Soup

The flour in this soup gives it a creamy texture without the additional calories of cream, and the oregano and basil give it an Italian flavor that my family finds irresistible! The Hobbit (our curly-haired youngest with the appetite of a hobbit!) eats 2 or 3 bowls of this every time I serve it! –Mellyn Continue reading

African Chicken Peanut Soup

–Adapted from a Cooking Light recipe shared with us by Debbie C.

I’m just amazed at how versatile basic ingredients can be! By changing a few of the spices, basic beans and rice become something reminiscent of African cuisine?! I wasn’t sure how the kiddos would react to this one. Surprisingly, both Picky Boy and Little Girl ate it without complaining! Continue reading

Yellow Rice and Peas

A few years ago someone brought us dinner when a baby was born. She had made the most flavorful rice! It added to the meal so much. I asked her for her recipe. “Oh, I added this and that,” she stated. When people say that I am not sure if they are hiding their recipes from others to keep them secret or if they are really just so talented they can add this and that. I decided to give it a try. I added this and that to many rice dishes (of course I took notes!) and came up with a few combinations that our family loves. This is one that is super easy, yet it looks like I used a lot of effort to get a colorful and flavorful side dish. Continue reading

Chicken Enchilada Casserole

This recipe is adapted from one I received at a “kitchen” wedding shower. It has always been one of our favorites! It tastes best if you make it the day before; giving the flavors more time to blend. You can also dress it up by keeping the tortillas whole and rolling the chicken mixture into enchiladas. If you do this, I’d recommend reserving about 1/2 of the soup mixture and adding chicken to the other half. Fill your tortillas with the chicken mixture and pour the reserved “soup” mixture over the top before baking.

Continue reading