Category Archives: Living Healthy

Corn Recipes

As we begin a new month and new season here at Cookin’ Food we want to expand our horizons. So we’ll be hosting a link party every Thursday to feature your creations. Our hope is to inspire Good Times in every home, by sharing your gifts and talents with others. Please join in the fun, tell your friends, visit the other blogs, and let the Good Times roll!

Easy Kettle Corn

homemade kettle corn

Perfectly Sweet and Salty Kettle Corn in 5 minutes!

To kick off the party we’ll share some of our recipes this week, but in the weeks to come we’ll feature some of our favorites that you link up.

Corn Recipes from Popcorn to Cornbread

mom's-popcorn

Easy Homemade Popcorn

Ghosts Almond Bark Popcorn

Spooky Almond Bark Popcorn Ghosts

Festive Popcorn

Fall Popcorn for Parties

CaramelCornCandybar

Homemade Caramel Popcorn

cornbread

The Best Cornbread

Mexican Sweet Corn Cake

Mexican Sweet Corn Cake

mom's-popcorn

Simple Old Fashioned Homemade Popcorn Recipe

mom's-popcorn

The smell of popcorn instantly transports me to memories of the drive-in theatre that we’d go to when we were kids. Mom and Dad would bundle us up in our pj’s because they knew we would fall asleep. We’d always bring dinner like fried chicken. And Mom would make popcorn on the stove and throw it in a paper bag to bring with us.

Well a couple years ago I was just sick of the microwave fake popcorn. I mean, have you ever cut one of those bags open? Some fake congealed yellow butter-flavored oily substance coats a small handful of kernels that have been sitting in that yellow mush for months until you finally throw it in the microwave. Not something I want to put in my mouth. Remember, I’m all about eating REAL food. So I set out to make Real Homemade Popcorn like Mom used to, with my own spin of course.

popcorn

Easy Homemade Popcorn

The perfect after school, sleep over, movie, or game night treat. Stovetop popcorn is super easy, and ready in just a couple of minutes -just as fast, better for you, and better tasting than the microwave!

Simple Old Fashioned Homemade Popcorn Recipe
 
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Homemade Old Fashioned Popcorn like Mom used to make it! Simple and real ingredients!
Author:
Recipe type: Snack
Serves/Makes: 4

Ingredients
  • 2T Butter, or a bit more.
  • 2T Canola Oil (I’ve also heard Sunflower Oil works well)
  • ⅓-1/2 Cup Popping Corn, I let the measuring cup fill over
  • Salt or Season Salt – our recipe here!
  • 1 Large Clean Paper Bag or a couple paper lunch bags

Directions
  1. Place all but the salt in a thick bottom 8 qt sauce pot with a good fitting lid covering it.
  2. Put heat on high, yup high. Now gently shake back and forth. In a few minutes you will hear it begin to pop (about 2minutes). I suggest wearing oven mitts to keep your hands comfortable during this.
  3. Shake a bit more vigorously while kernels pop and keep contents moving well.
  4. Then when popping starts to really slow down – believe me you will be able to hear it (about 1 minute of popping). Take it off the heat and quickly pour into paper bag or large bowl, salt to taste and shimy shake the bag for a moment or two.
  5. DONE! Pop in a flic, get a cold beverage, and enjoy!

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Beef and Green Bean Stir Fry

The Recipe Olympics: Chinese Beef and Green Bean Stir Fry



This recipe has been staring me in the face the last couple weeks as it’s waited to be published. Everyday, yummy beef, green beans, and maitake mushrooms seem to call to me from the desktop, begging to be made again…

This simple stir fry comes from one of our good friends, Wei, who brings us simple Chinese cuisine from his homeland. Asian cuisine is something I struggle with as a cook, I’m just not good at making it, but Wei was able to direct me with ease, and point me in the right direction.

Don’t forget to submit your recipes for the Recipe Olympics!

Here’s a few pointers that I live by now: When it comes to stir fry, less is more. Just a couple veggies at most and a protein are usually all you need in one dish. Also, select like vegetables to cook together. Meaning, veggies that have a similar cook time and manner of cooking, either cooked better in water or in oil. Think broccoli and carrots are similar both in their cook times and are better simmered in water. Where as green beans went fairly well with mushrooms as they have a very short cook time, and can be cooked in a small amount of oil. Likewise select a protein that works with your vegetables. Cook everything in one skillet, so if you’re cooking your protein in oil, choose veggies that are best in oil. (Never mix oil and water on the stove unless you want a grease fire.) Cook hot and fast, keep it simple, and you’ll be enjoying a fresh stir fry every time.

Chinese Beef and Green Bean Stir Fry

A light and simple stir fry made in 10 minutes, perfect for dinner or lunch, healthy and satisfying!
Ingredients
6-8oz Thin Sliced Top Round (1″ long pieces)
2 Cups Fresh Green Beans (ends cut or pinched off)
1 Cup Sliced Mushrooms (thick as beans, Maitake, or White)
2-4 Tbs Toasted Sesame Oil (or Vegetable Oil)
2-4 Tbs Soy Sauce (or Teriyaki, or other Stir Fry Sauce)

Directions
Over high heat in a large skillet cook your protein in enough oil to coat bottom of pan, set aside. In same pan sautee veggies with a small amount of oil as needed, then add back protein. End with soy sauce or other stir fry sauce to taste, and you’re done. A little salt and pepper, or even crushed red pepper for spice wouldn’t hurt either. I also threw in a very small amount of onions just for a little extra flavor.

Serves: 2
Time: 15 minutes

Tip: Veggies should not be killed in the process of a stir fry. I find just a couple minutes is all you need to cook that vegetable properly, they’ll still need some life and snap to them, no need to serve soggy veggies.


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Mac and Cheese

Homemade Mac & Cheese

Mac and Cheese

 

Creamy Homemade Mac and Cheese

Made this awesome mac and cheese for a picnic. I was able to smother a bag and a half of macaroni with this awesome cheese sauce! My tip to you is taste the sauce while you make it, after you add each cup or so of cheese, to make it the way you like it! This sauce can be made two ways, light and rich, which is why many ingredients have 2 measurements. Have at it, and make yourself some easy comfort food! Just stir in the cheeses slowly, to melt, and cheese and season to taste, literally takes maybe 20 minutes to make. Oh and cook the pasta while you make your sauce, for a super quick dinner! Pairs great with Cornbread, salad, and any meat :)

Homemade Mac & Cheese
 
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Good old American Comfort Food. Make it rich and creamy or take it easy on the cheese and add cauliflower for a healthier option
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: Comfort Food
Serves/Makes: 5

Ingredients
  • 2 Tbs Butter
  • 2 Tbs All Purpose Flour
  • 2-3 Cups Milk
  • 1 Tbs Garlic Powder
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Pepper
  • 1-2 Cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese (whole milk for creamy mac, or part-skim for healthier)
  • 2-4 Cups Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • 1-2 Cups Monterey Jack Cheese
  • 1 Bag cooked Macaroni
  • For super rich and creamy add another half stick of butter when mixing at the end.

Directions
  1. Melt butter, and whisk in flour over medium heat in a large skillet. Cook rue mixture, continuing to stir for 60 seconds.
  2. Slowly whisk in 1 cup of Milk, Let thicken and then add another full cup of milk. The remaining cup of milk can be added over time while you add the cheese if you want a thinner sauce.
  3. Season the white sauce with garlic powder, and salt and pepper. Add 1 cup of mozzarella to the white sauce and use a wooden spoon or heat resistant spatula to stir slowly. Allow for the cheese to melt completely.
  4. The remaining cheese can be added a cup at a time to your taste. If you would like to make the full, rich sauce follow the largest amounts of the recipe. -otherwise only use 1 cup of mozzarella in the sauce and only 2 cups of cheddar.
  5. Once you have either added all the ingredients or have cut back on some of the cheese to your liking, pour in the cooked macaroni pasta and mix it together. Serve up the mac, and top with Monterey Jack cheese and a sprinkling of salt and pepper to taste.

Tips
Stir slowly the entire time making the sauce. Follow the smaller measurements for a lighter sauce and the largest measurements for a thicker richer sauce.

 

Caprese-Salad

Caprese Salad Skewers

Hello everyone! Sorry it’s been so long since I’ve posted. Been a busy few months. But I have so much to share, so stay tuned these next couple weeks for some great Summer Party ideas!

Caprese-Salad

Caprese Salad Skewers

These mini caprese skewers are perfect for a summer party or picnic and are so simple to make. I recently made these for my sister’s graduation party, and they were a huge hit! In fact, everyone liked them so much, I made them 3 times last week. I’ll share some more small-bites recipes from the party later on. But for now, enjoy this mouthful of flavor!

Caprese Salad Skewers
 
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These small skewers are a perfect one-bite treat. They’re an ideal balance of savory fresh ingredients you don’t even have to cook!
Author:
Recipe type: Summer Parties
Cuisine: Italian
Serves/Makes: 20

Ingredients
  • 40 Cherry Tomatoes
  • 20 Mozzarella Pearls
  • 10 Large or 20 Small Basil Leaves
  • 4 Tbs Olive Oil
  • 4 Tbs Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 Tbs Kosher Salt
  • 20 3-4″ Skewers/ Picks/ or toothpicks
  • Garlic (optional)

Directions
  1. Before you skewer ingredients, you can reduce the balsamic vinegar in half (1/2 cup to ¼ cup over medium heat) for a sweeter flavor. If you do this, turn your fan on or open a window because your house will smell like vinegar!
  2. I also dressed it up a bit and took 2 cloves of garlic (split open) and a ½ cup of extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt and let it sit over low heat for 30 minutes to make an infused garlic olive oil. These first two steps are optional, but they can really enhance the flavor of this dish.
  3. Start my rinsing tomatoes and basil.
  4. Skewer in order: 1 tomato, 1 small or ½ basil leaf, 1 mozzarella pearl, and finish with 1 tomato. Lay skewers however you like on a large platter. If you’re making a bunch for a party you can double or triple the amount and skewer these hours or even the night before and refrigerate.
  5. If you chose to reduce the vinegar and infuse the olive oil, set aside and let cool completely.
  6. Right before serving, drizzle olive oil and vinegar over the skewers and a dash of salt. Enjoy!