Cowboy Caviar – Small Batch

small cowboy caviar recipe

I found a nice recipe for Cowboy Caviar but honestly – they make SO MUCH and I really didn’t need to have so much in my fridge.  I cut the recipe here and there and it still made quite a bit – great for a couple or small gathering.

Hubby hates cilantro – so I made it optional here.  Use whatever bell pepper you have on hand, I like yellow, orange & red better than green – but green would work okay as well.  I do think that red onion is a must, a regular yellow onion would be too strong.

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Easy Apple Crisp Recipe

I found this recipe and modified it a bit, and although I think it’s VERY good – it feels weird to call it a “crisp” when it contains no oatmeal.  Apple crisp – growing up, anyway- always had oatmeal.  

This recipe is great because it only takes 4 good size apples, 5 if they’re smallish – and cooks in an 8×8 pan – so its a good way to use up fruit without making a giant pan of something.  Good for small dinner parties or potlucks too.  Enjoy!

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Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa and Coconut Rice

I have posted previously about my dislike for fruit and meat combos, and I’ll stick to that in MOST cases – but last night I made a mango salsa that was amazing with grilled chicken.  Coconut rice was the perfect accompaniment – its not overpowering, and it was really tasty on a piece of Naan Bread with the salsa and chicken.

I bet this salsa would be good with fish, too.  I’m not a huge fish fan – but if I get some nice Cod, Halibut or something else I’ll try it grilled with this salsa.

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Flourless Orange & Almond Cake

I wanted something yummy and fun for Easter Dinner dessert and ran across this cake on Pinterest.  Its pretty simple, but I had to do some finagling to convert it from European Measures to US.  I’ve NEVER heard of making a cake with boiled oranges but this worked well.  The icing sugar on top of the almonds is just the perfect touch of sweet.  I’d like to try this with a glaze on top as well – maybe add some poppy seeds?  

I added the almond extract to the original recipe as well, just an extra little kick of almond to go with all the orange.  Be sure you bake for the full time – at 1 hour, the toothpick came out clean – but the bottom/middle needed more time – especially when I used an 8″ pan.  I recommend 1 hr 20 minutes for the 9″ pan – 1 hour 35-40 min for the 8″ pan

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Parmesan Meatballs Recipe

parmesan meatballs recipe

I love quick and easy weeknight meals that taste like you spent a ton of time on dinner.  I have made this parmesan meatballs recipe two ways – one from scratch like the recipe below – and the other using frozen store-bought meatballs.  Both are tasty – and there is NOTHING wrong with using good quality frozen meatballs.  It’s a nice shortcut and makes getting dinner on the table a breeze.

The trick with meatballs (and meatloaf for that matter) is to handle it gently.  Mix without squishing the meat and make your meatballs without packing the burger together.  This will guarantee a tender meatball.  If you wanted to get REALLY fancy – put a small cube of mozzarella in the middle of the meatball as you form it.

You can also get these to the “bake point” and freeze the whole pan.  This parmesan meatballs recipe is great to whip out and throw in the oven on a busy day/night.  I really like to cook mine in cast iron, if you do you can go from stovetop to oven in one pan.

This is a way to dress up boring meatballs and make something “fancy” without a lot of effort.
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Baked Chicken & Orzo

baked chicken & orzo recipe

I found a baked chicken & orzo recipe on Pinterest and adapted it for my family.  The recipe I found was HUGE, so i cut it down for 4.  Its simple and 1 pan.  Orzo is a great alternative to rice, cooks up nice and takes on flavor just like any pasta.  The original recipe called for way more butter than I used, and way more sage.  I like just a hint – you could totally substitute dried sage for the fresh if you didnt want to buy a whole package to only use 2 leaves.

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