zesty barbecue chicken sliders

We’re closing in on the end of summer, but luckily this chicken dish is good in any season. Made in the crock-pot and packed with flavor, I charmed my book club with these sliders and then froze the leftovers. Pair the sliders with cheese, eat the meat without the bun, the options are endless–and tasty to boot.

The original recipe is from Allrecipes and for a change, I followed this one to the letter. And served it with the crunch coleslaw. Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 6 frozen skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1 (12 ounce) bottle barbecue sauce
  • 1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

Directions

  1. Place chicken in a slow cooker.
  2. In a bowl, mix the barbecue sauce, Italian salad dressing, brown sugar, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over the chicken.
  3. Cover, and cook 3 to 4 hours on High or 6 to 8 hours on Low.

 

crunchy coleslaw

A new take on an old favorite, this coleslaw has been a fave of mine for years–ever since I had it at my friend Denise’s. While I think we have her sister to thank for the recipe, I’m also going to site Food.com for their version (minus the onions).

For those final cook outs this summer, or something a little out of the ordinary–give this a try and let me know how what you think. Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 1(16 ounce) package Coleslaw (grated cabbage and carrots)
  • 4 green onions, chopped (I never put these in)
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons  sugar
  • 1 package ramen noodles (beef flavor)
  • 1⁄2cup slivered almonds
  • 1⁄2cup  sunflower seeds

Directions

  1. Toss together cole slaw and green onions.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, sugar, and ramen seasoning packet.
  3. Pour over salad and toss together.
  4. Just before serving, add ramen noodles (broken into small pieces), almonds and sunflower seeds and toss together.

 

strawberry salsa

 

Whether you’re bringing a dish to a summer party or hanging at home on the deck with family, this quick and pretty dish is sure to please. The original recipe is courtesy of one of my favorite kitchen chef’s, The Pioneer Woman, and I only altered it slightly for a recent book club reunion with some girlfriends.

 

Letting the salsa sit overnight allowed all of the ingredients to spend some quality time together so that when it’s served, you get maximum flavor.

Ingredients

  • salt to taste

Directions

Put the strawberries in a bowl along with the onion, bell pepper, and some of the cilantro, reserving some for garnish. Add some salt and the juice of 1 lime. Mix it all together, cover and refrigerate.

Serve with tortilla chips.

thai coconut mussels

unnamed-2Let’s hear it for Chef Michelle!

I just love Thai food and was excited to try out this new recipe from The Skinny-Taste Cookbook by Gina Homolka. This was easy to make, healthy, and everyone went back for seconds so this is another KEEPER! For those of you looking for a new cookbook that features, as Gina puts it, “Light on calories, big on flavor,” recipes, I highly recommend this one. It has quickly turned into one of my favorite, go-to cookbooks.

Hands-on Time: 30 min.
Total Time: Under 1 hour.
Serves 5 (easily)

Ingredients:unnamed
1 teaspoon coconut oil
½ finely chopped red bell pepper
3 medium scallions, thinly sliced
1 tbsp. chopped fresh ginger*
1 (14.5 oz) can petite diced tomatoes
1 (14 oz) can light coconut milk (I went with Gina’s recommendation of using Thai Kitchen brand)
1 to 2 fresh red chiles, finely chopped or ½ to ¾ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes)**
½ cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
½ tsp. kosher salt
3 pound mussels, scrubbed and de-bearded (about 60 medium)***
½ lime
Loaf of crusty bread for soaking up the yummy sauceunnamed-1

michelle’s musings
*Since I didn’t have fresh ginger on hand I used 1 packet of sushi ginger. I usually keep a few packets from sushi takeout in my refrigerator just in case.

** I used ¾ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

***I used 1 bag of Wegman’s Organic Mussels and we had plenty for 6 servings.

Directions:
1. In a large pot, heat the coconut oil over medium-low heat. Add the bell pepper and scallions and cook, stirring, until soft, 1—2 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, coconut milk, chilies or red pepper flakes, ¼ cup of the cilantro and salt. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes to blend the flavors.

2. Add the mussels, cover, and cook until the mussels open, 5—7 minutes. Squeeze the lime over the mussels and top with the remaining ¼ cup cilantro. Divide the mussels and broth equally among bowls and serve with crusty bread.

ENJOY!

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Nutrition Information (courtesy of the Skinny-Taste Cookbook):
1 Serving (12 mussels): 302 calories; 12.5 fat (5.5g saturated); 33g protein; 21g carbohydrates; 1.5g fiber; 54mg cholesterol; 5g sugars; 918mg sodium

crock-pot pulled pork bbq

unnamedChef Michelle is on the scene once again!

I am a huge crock-pot fan! Throw a bunch of stuff in, walk out the door, and when you get home dinner is done. Who doesn’t love that?! I wanted to share this super simple recipe that is a family favorite. I’m not sure what magazine I ripped this out of years ago but I hope you like it as much as we do. ENJOY!

Hands-on Time:
10 min.
Total Time: 6—9 hours.
Serves 6 (easily)

Ingredients:
3 lb. or larger boneless pork butt roast, trimmed of fat.unnamed-1
1 12-oz. can of Coke (I use 1-20 oz. bottle of Coke Zero to help save on calories while still getting the flavor. Don’t use diet soda.)
18.5 bottle of your favorite barbeque sauce (I use Stubb’s Spicy barbeque)
Rolls for serving – either sandwich size or you can use slider rolls.

Directions
1). Place the pork butt roast in your crock pot and pour the soda in. Cook on low for 6—8 hours.unnamed-2

2). Remove roast, shred meat and remove any extra fatty pieces. Reserve the juices.

3). Return meat to the crock pot. Add in your barbeque sauce and some of the reserved juices to make a medium-thin sauce. Cook and additional 30—60 minutes.

michelle’s musings
I have a large crock pot so I typically use a 6 lb. size for leftovers. I don’t trim the fat off since I think it adds flavor and it’s much easier to take any fat off when shredding it. Place the roast fat side up in your crock pot. I have also used bone-in which again, no big deal removing the bone and fat at the end when shredding. If you want to substitute with chicken breasts, I have made it by cooking it on high for 4.5 hours.

I love BBQ with slaw so I will also grab a bag of the pre-mixed coleslaw and add Wegman’s Yogurt Coleslaw Dressing. Another great slaw recipe is from Cooking Light, Tequila Slaw with Lime and Cilantro.

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