Hearty Veggie Lasagna

When I open a can of freeze dried vegetables I like to use them within about 3-6 months — just because they look best and taste best in this time frame.  This recipe is an awesome way to make dinner and help use whatever is left of the freeze dried veggies in the house. Talk about win-win! Continue reading

Simple Red Beans and Rice

This recipe comes from sweet Megan. She was born and raised a true Southern. This classic is so good we just had to have the recipe. We think of her each time we make it. Megan’s recipe called for 1 lb. of smoke sausage. I only simplified it to make it is easier on food storage, but when I have sausage available I surely throw it in, though the flavor here is still good and desirable without.

  • 2 cups Dry Navy Beans
  • 2 cups Dry Kidney Beans
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 Tablespoons Tony’s Charcheres Seasoning**
  • 2 Tablespoons Dehydrated Onion, or 1/2 large onion chopped
  • 3 cups Rice
  • 6 cups Boiling Water
Mix beans, 8 cups water, seasoning, and onion in large crockpot and cook on High for 8-10 hours.* Before serving, mash some of the beans with spoon to thicken the liquid (add water if it’s too thick). Cook rice with boiling water according to package directions.
serve over rice.
*If you soak the beans overnight in the crockpot with the 8 cups of water, you can add the rest of the ingredients in the morning and cook on high for 4-5 hours.
**I found this seasoning at Walmart.  It comes in a green canister and is about the size and style of a small grated parmesan cheese container.

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.

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Butternut Turkey Casserole

Although I can’t seem to find a way to make butternut squash truly shelf stable. The freezer is a good place to store it when my garden is plentiful. I’ve found that peeling it with a vegetable peeler and then cubing it (remember to get rid of the seeds in the middle) before throwing it into a ziploc makes it ready and available all through the winter. When I need some for a recipe or a side dish I use my double broiler and in 15-20 minutes I have hot, soft squash! This is just one of the recipes I love to make with this frozen vegetable. Either leftover turkey from the big day or a can of turkey off the shelf are great in this and both are welcome at my table! Continue reading

Cream of “Chicken” Soup

After realizing my family can’t rotate 40 cans of cream of chicken soup fast enough to keep them from expiring, I was determined to find a way to make a replacement from scratch. At about the same time I discovered bean flour and the miraculous way it can substitute for butter and oils. This recipe is the marriage of those two ideas! The canned stuff is creamier in its condensed form, but as I’ve used this substitution in our recipes, we haven’t noticed the difference. In fact, Spicy Girl poured today’s batch (I was trying to get you a good photo!) all over her pasta at dinner and pronounced it delicious! Which gives me an idea for a casserole…

Speaking of the picture…cream of chicken soup isn’t exactly a glamorous specimen of culinary delight. Open at your own risk!

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Brazilian Black Beans (Feijoada) and Rice

–From Jeanie R.

These rich black beans have just a few ingredients, but the result is flavorful and delicious! Jeanie said she normally uses 4-5 slices of bacon to flavor her beans, but felt that real bacon bits or even jerky would be an acceptable shelf-stable substitute. I also found that Yoder’s, an Amish company based in Ohio, sells canned pork chunks containing just pork, salt and water. Their website boasts a 10-year shelf life! Definitely something to look into!  –Mellyn