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Dine In: Chile Relleno Soup

Chile Relleno SoupThere was a time when I made it my mission to taste every chile relleno at every Mexican restaurant in a 100-mile radius.

I think I was pretty successful; there’s really no more relleno dishes left that I haven’t taste-tested. I know to avoid the soggy, greasy dish at one certain restaurant. I know that at another, the golden, crisp goodness and gooey cheese is what I’m going to eat before I even open the menu.

I’ve tried making chile rellenos at home, with varying degrees of success.

However, this soup highlights the essence of the dish, without having to deep-fry anything.

The best part is that you can eat it at home on your back porch in front of a roaring fire on a lazy Friday night. No reservations or gratuity required.

Chile Relleno Soup

4 poblano peppers
4 Tbs butter
1/4 cup onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp ground cumin
4 cups chicken stock
salt and pepper, to taste
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
8 oz cream cheese, cut into cubes
3 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided

Roast the peppers over a gas flame or in the oven under the broiler on high heat until pepper skin is charred and blistered. Put peppers into brown paper bag, and close bag. Let steam and cool for about 20 minutes. Rub the skin to remove as much char as possible. Then, remove seeds and pith; finely chop.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and cook until foamy. Add onions and cook, stirring frequently, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, cumin and poblano peppers. Stir until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add in the chicken broth; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to a simmer. Add the chicken, and cook until the chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes.

Incorporate cream cheese and cheddar cheese into the broth, whisking until smooth. To serve, divide into bowls, and then top with remaining cheese. Serve immediately with finely diced tomatoes and minced fresh cilantro, optional.

Nutritional Information: Calories from Fat: 341, Fat: 38 g, Carbohydrates: 10.24 g, Fiber: 2.64 g, Protein: 41.11 g, Cholesterol: 183 mg.

Shop the Sale: Pork and Pasta Stew

Pork and Pasta Stew“Hey Mom, what are you writing about?” my younger son just asked me.

“Pork butt,” I replied.

He collapsed into fits of raucous laughter only a teenage boy could produce at the mention of the word “butt.” Boys never really grow up.

Teenage boys do, however, eat me out of house and home. That’s why it’s important to be able to make them a meal that is filling, nutritious and economical.

Enter Brookshire’s Boston butt roast.

This is one of my favorite things to cook because one roast will feed a small army (aka, teenage boys), and the pork gets so much flavor from the fat.

This meal is super easy because you make it in the slow cooker, so it’s ready when you walk in the door at night.

Pork and Pasta Stew

1 1/2 lbs pork butt roast (Boston butt), cut into 1-inch pieces
4 cups chicken broth
1 (28 oz) can whole tomatoes, chopped (liquid reserved)
6 cloves garlic, sliced
1/2 Tbs crushed red pepper
1 Tbs oregano
1 1/4 tsp kosher salt
6 oz small shaped pasta, uncooked
4 oz baby spinach
2 oz parmesan cheese, grated

Combine the pork roast, broth, tomatoes and the liquid, garlic, red pepper, oregano and salt in a large slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 6 hours.

Just before serving, add the pasta. Cover and cook for 10 more minutes. Stir in the spinach. Cover and cook until the pasta is al dente, about 2 minutes. Serve immediately topped with parmesan cheese.

Serves 6

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 400, Calories from Fat: 104, Fat: 12 g (4 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 132 mg, Sodium: 1175 mg, Carbohydrates: 26 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugar: 4 g, Protein: 47 g.

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Dine In: Slow Cooker French Onion Soup

Slow Cooker French Onion SoupA few weeks ago, I had lunch at my favorite local bakery and café, a place I eat so frequently that everybody knows my name. It helps that my BFF’s daughter is the manager there, too.

I went in for lunch, and the owner greeted me and suggested that I try the French Onion Soup.

To be totally honest, while I like French Onion Soup, it’s never something I crave or choose off a menu.

She brought me a little cup of soup, and I was hooked. I even went back later in the week for some more, and now I’ve made them promise to alert me on days they are serving the magical soup.

Their French Onion Soup is a secret family recipe. No amount of cajoling could get them to give it up. However, I do know one of the major ingredients, so I set off to find a similar recipe featuring red wine. I also know it’s slow-cooked for hours.

French Onion Soup is definitely a meal that you can dress up for a stay-at-home date night or serve as a hearty fall family dinner.

I can’t wait to make it at home, and then enjoy the leftovers all weekend long.

Slow Cooker French Onion Soup

1 bay leaf
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 large yellow onions, slivered
8 cups beef broth
1 cup dry red wine
1/2 tsp pepper
3/4 tsp salt
1 loaf French bread, sliced into 4 thick slices
6 Tbs butter
1/2 lb Gruyere cheese, sliced

Combine bay leaf, garlic, onions, beef broth, wine, salt and pepper in a slow cooker. Cook on low for 8 hours or more.

Spread butter on 4 slices of bread. Ladle soup into four oven-proof bowls. Top each bowl with a slice of bread, butter-side up, and then add a slice of Gruyere cheese. Broil on high until cheese is melted. Serve immediately.

Serves 4

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 648, Calories from Fat: 351, Fat: 39 g (22 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 108 mg, Sodium: 2470 mg, Carbohydrates: 32 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugar: 8 g, Protein: 32 g.

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Shop the Sale: Sunday Roast

Sunday RoastMy mom always made the BEST roast beef.

However, it seems like in my adult years that when I try a roast beef recipe, I get shredded beef or more of a pot roast instead of a piece of meat I can slice and serve with a sprinkling of pan gravy.

Tonight, I’m going to try another new roast beef recipe, and I think this one is going to be a winner. Of course, I’m already starting out winning with rump roast from Brookshire’s.

Use rump roast. Not chuck roast. Chuck roast tends to “shred” and we want to slice, remember?

Be sure to bring your meat to room temperature before you sear it. You’ll get the most beautiful sear that way, I promise.

When you take the meat out of the oven and let it rest, whisk about a tablespoon of flour into the pan juices on the stove over medium-high heat (if you cook in cast-iron, you can just set the skillet on the stove and not dirty another pan). Cook, stirring often, until thickened and bubbly for a brown pan gravy.

Perfect Roast Beef

2 Tbs canola oil
2 1/2 lbs rump roast, room temperature
2 white onions, chopped
1 cup baby carrots
1 cup water
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 300° F.

In a heavy cast-iron skillet, heat oil over heat. Season the room temperature rump roast with salt, pepper and garlic, massaging spices into meat.

Sear in the hot oil, turning so each side gets browned.

Remove from heat and add onions, carrots and water.

Roast for 20 minutes per pound for rare or 30 minutes per pound for medium-rare.

Serves 6

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 407, Calories from Fat: 145, Fat: 16 g (0 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 0 mg, Sodium: 16 mg, Carbohydrates: 6 g, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 3 g, Protein: 59 g.

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Healthy Living: Greek Yogurt Mac & Cheese

Greek Yogurt Mac and CheeseI love mac and cheese.

It’s one of my favorite dishes, and I try to make it as often as possible.

I even make a mean Cauliflower and Cheese dish, also featured on this blog.

While I love the cauliflower variety, sometimes you just want some pasta.

Even while eating pasta (use whole-grain for added fiber and health benefits), you can make a healthier sauce for the mac and cheese using Greek yogurt instead of butter and cream for the base.

This is so creamy and tangy that you don’t even miss the added fat.

The Greek yogurt is a great source of protein, and it gives the sauce a rich, full flavor.

Greek Yogurt Mac and Cheese

8 oz whole-wheat macaroni or other small pasta
8 oz sharp cheddar, grated
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
2 cups fresh baby spinach
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder

Cook the pasta until al dente, according to package directions (about 8 minutes).

Drain the pasta well, reserving about 1/2 cup of the pasta water, and toss with spinach to wilt the spinach. Return the pasta and spinach to the pot.

Add about 1/4 cup of the reserved water to the pot, and stir in the cheese until melted. Stir in the Greek yogurt and all the spices; stir until smooth and creamy. Thin with remaining reserved water, if necessary. Serve immediately.

Serves 4

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 321, Fat: 5 g (4 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 13 mg, Sodium: 373 mg, Carbohydrates: 45 g, Fiber: 5 g, Sugar: 2 g, Protein: 25 g.

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Product Talk: Grandma’s Molasses

Grandma’s Molasses Marble CakeFall and holiday baking season are upon us, and there’s nothing like the rich flavor of molasses to use in your cool weather treats.

Grandma’s Molasses is an unsulfured, sugarcane molasses that is a great alternative to sugar and a perfect ingredient for baking or seeping into slow-cooked dishes like baked beans.

Molasses is one of the earliest ingredients used in baking. Originally sourced from the West Indies, having molasses to sweeten your cakes and breads was considered a status symbol at one time.

Grandma’s Molasses comes in Original or Robust varieties. Both are kosher and gluten-free. Robust molasses is more concentrated and less sweet than original. It’s made of a blend of “first molasses,” which is what remains once the sugarcane juice has crystallized, according to the company website.

Whether you’re making barbecue sauce or baking cookies, molasses is a deep, rich, aromatic ingredient that will enhance the flavor of anything you make.

Marble Cake

2 cups cake flour, sifted
1 tsp salt
3 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2/3 cup milk
1/4 cup Grandma’s® Original Molasses
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves

Sift together flour, salt and cream of tartar. Cream together shortening, sugar and vanilla. Beat in eggs. Add milk alternately with flour mixture. Beat for 30 seconds. Place 1/3 of batter in a small bowl; stir in molasses and spices. Pour light and dark batters alternately into a well-greased, lightly floured, 8-inch tube cake pan or into a 9 x 9 pan. Bake tube cake for 1 hour in 325° F oven, or bake the 9 x 9 cake for 45 minutes in 350° F oven. Frost as desired.

Serves 12

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 254, Fat: 10 g (3 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 28 mg, Sodium: 214 mg, Carbohydrates: 39 g, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 21 g, Protein: 4 g.


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Dine In: Easy Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

Chicken Cordon Bleu CasseroleGrowing up, the gold standard for a fancy meal was Chicken Cordon Bleu.

I figured if we were having that dish, it was a special occasion. This all stems from my parents taking me to a French restaurant for an early birthday, at age 10 maybe, and that clearly made a huge impression on me. Also, that was the first time I had Chicken Cordon Bleu, and I think I requested it for every birthday after that.

Chicken Cordon Bleu is still a pretty snazzy meal in my book, but it’s faster to make in casserole form!

You can purchase a rotisserie chicken to make this dish quickly as a great date night dish for a Friday night.

Easy Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole

6 cups cooked chicken, shredded (from 2 lb chicken)
6 oz ham, diced
4 oz butter, melted
6 oz cream cheese, softened
1 Tbs Dijon mustard
1 Tbs white wine, optional
2 oz lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
5 oz Swiss cheese, sliced

Preheat oven to 350° F. Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Place chicken in the bottom of the pan, and top with pieces of ham.

In a food processor, combine butter, cream cheese, white wine (optional), mustard, lemon juice and salt. Blend until thickened. Pour over chicken and ham in the baking dish, and top with slices of Swiss cheese.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until hot and bubbly.

If desired, broil under high heat for 2 minutes to get cheese golden.

Serves 6

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 605, Fat: 39 g (22 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 226 mg, Sodium: 928 mg, Carbohydrates: 4 g, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 1 g, Protein: 57 g.

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Shop the Sale: Smoked Whole Fryer Chicken

Smoked Whole Fryer ChickenRight now, right this very minute, I have a whole fryer on the smoker.

It’s kind of a misnomer, isn’t it, when you say you are going to smoke a “fryer,” but a whole fryer chicken was originally intended to be processed and fried!

However, as I’m sure you know, they’re delicious smoked or roasted, as well.

Not only are they delicious and deliciously easy to cook, but they smell good, too. Really good. In fact, I’m moving my laptop out onto the back porch so I can work downwind of the smoker.

Be right back.

There. Oh my. This is amazing.

The scent of the smoker always reminds me of fall, even when it’s still hitting 95 degrees down here in the South.

I’m going to love how this smells all day long!

Grab a fryer (or two, or three) at Brookshire’s. Fry it if you want. Smoke it if you want. Roast it if you want. Any way you cook it, it will be delicious!

Smoked Whole Fryer Chicken

1 whole fryer, rinsed and patted dry
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup Twisted Q Crazy Chic Seasoning, or your favorite spice rub

Preheat smoker to 250° F. Sprinkle hickory wood chips near the heat source.

After chicken is rinsed and patted dry, rub with butter, and then sprinkle with seasonings, patting firmly to adhere seasonings to butter.

Place chicken in smoker and close lid. Do not open the lid during the cooking process to maintain proper temperature.

Smoke chicken until meat thermometer reads 165° F and juices run clear, about 1 hour per pound.

Remove from smoker and serve immediately.

Serves 8

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 615, Fat: 22 g (10 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 292 mg, Sodium: 296 mg, Carbohydrates: 0 g, Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 0 g, Protein: 98 g.

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Product Talk: Campbell’s French Onion Soup Beef Bourguignon

Campbell’s French Onion Soup Beef Bourguignon I spent quite a bit of time in France, visiting the nearby country during the years I lived in Germany.

Suffice it to say that I ate quite a bit of one of the country’s signature dishes, Beef Bourguignon or Beef Burgundy. It was one of my favorites. Not only does the rich flavor develop after hours of cooking, but the smell is so comforting and always reminds me of fall in France.

A few years after I returned, I went to a friend’s house for dinner, and she had made Beef Bourguignon. While I was helping her prepare a side salad, I noticed empty cans of Campbell’s French Onion Soup in her trash can.

Surely, she hadn’t used canned soup (gasp!) in the beef bourguignon.

She had.

It was delicious, just as good as anything you’d eat in France.

I have to say that I use it myself now.

Campbell’s French Onion Soup has a rich flavor that any French chef would approve of.

Campbell’s French Onion Soup Beef Bourguignon

2 lbs beef stew meat
1 large onion, sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb mushrooms, sliced
1/2 lb bacon, diced
2 cans Campbell’s French Onion Soup
1 bottle burgundy (or dry red) wine (if you really don’t want to use wine – the alcohol does burn off – substitute 1 can beef consommé and 1 can tomato paste)
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Season the meat with salt and pepper. Set aside. In a heavy skillet, sauté bacon until crisp. Remove the bacon from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside. In the bacon grease, sauté onions until translucent. Add garlic and mushrooms; stir for 1 minute. Add in the beef, and sear on all sides. Remove from heat. Transfer the meat mixture to an oven-safe baking dish with a lid. Stir in soups and burgundy. Braise at 375° F for 2 hours.

Serve over rice or egg noodles.

Serves 6

Nutritional Information: Calories Per Serving: 710, Calories from Fat: 239, Fat: 27 g (9 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 177 mg, Sodium: 1819 mg, Carbohydrates: 22 g, Fiber: 2 g, Sugar: 8 g, Protein: 63 g.

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Family Matters: Family Time Casserole

Family Time CasseroleSchool is underway, and the hustle and bustle of everyday living is crazy again, especially with two seniors this year! Let me tell you how nice it is to get home from working all day to find supper on the table and ready to eat. Below is a recipe that one of my daughters prepared after school: it was delicious. It did not take hours to prepare, and in our house, that is our kind of meal!

As days get busier and our kids get older, we still need to focus on family time each day – sitting down for supper is so important. Remember to take time to talk with your kids, hug them tight, and sit and eat together…it makes a difference. Remind them how important they are and how much you appreciate them helping at home. Count your blessings daily, and give thanks for time with your family!

Family Time Casserole

3 bags Brookshire’s Boil-in-Bag Brown Rice
1 large can Brookshire’s Cream of Chicken Soup
3 large cans Brookshire’s Chunk White Chicken
1 cup milk
1 cup fresh broccoli, chopped
1 (8 oz) pkg Brookshire’s Shredded Colby Jack Cheese
1 box Brookshire’s Garlic Toast
Morton Nature’s Seasons Seasoning Blend

Boil the bagged brown rice per instructions on the box. Put prepared rice in large bowl. Add cream of chicken soup and milk; mix together. Add in canned chicken and chopped broccoli. Mix really well so the chicken pieces break apart. Preheat oven to 350° F. Place mixture in large rectangle dish, and cook in the oven for 30 minutes (until bubbling around edges). Pull pan from oven. Add the shredded cheese over the top; return to oven to melt and crisp the cheese. Cook garlic bread in oven as directed on box. You can add a green salad for a little something extra.

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The products mentioned in “Share, the Brookshire’s Blog” are sold by Brookshire Grocery Company, DBA Brookshire’s . Some products may be mentioned as part of a relationship between its manufacturer and Brookshire’s.

Product Talk

Each Monday we feature a new or interesting product.

Healthy Living

Tips on maintaining a healthy lifestyle, every Tuesday.

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On Wednesdays, get a tip or idea on using an item in the circular.

Family Matters

Ideas for the whole family come to you every Thursday.

Dine In

Stop fighting the crowds, save money and dine in, every Friday.

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