Fiesta Chili~ Crock-Pot or Not~ You Decide!

Fiesta Chili was shared with me ages ago while coloring my favorite Nail Tech, Pam’s hair. She owns Pampered Nails in the Harris Arcade in downtown Hickory. If you need to have your nails pampered she is the go to girl! LOVE!! I have adapted this a bit so here goes! It is so quick and easy and everyone loves it!!

1 lb ground turkey browned
1 small onion, diced
1 28oz can diced tomatoes
1 can Rotel
1 can corn
1 small can green chilies
1 can seasoned blackbeans, undrained
1 can white beans, drained
1 pkt taco seasoning
½ pkt ranch seasoning

Brown turkey and dump everything in the crockpot, set to low  or do on stove top which ever is most convient!

Chip Beef Gravy

Somehow the girls and I started talking about chip beef on toast. How? no idea  Why? no clue but it had been years since any of us had eaten it! B swears it is hard to make and takes forever to prepare. L says her MIL makes it so well that she has never had the desire to make it. I shared that my Dad made it on cool winter nights when nothing else was in the house! So I made this little gem for my people the other night and they gobbled it up! It is SO EASY and really can’t be messed up. It is just gravy with this salty, cured meat tossed in and plopped on toast. There is something very comfortable about this dish. ENJOY!!

Chip Beef Gravy

4 T butter
4 T flour
2 c milk
splash of sherry
splash of Worchestershire Sauce
lots of black pepper
tiny dash of nutmeg
1 jar dried beef

Before you start cooking, open jar of beef and fill jar with water.Allow the chip beef to soak in the water while you are preparing the gravy. I KNOW!! You arethinking this chick is nuts, I am, but not when it comes to cooking!! Soaking this insanely salty meat really makes it so much better, is is so salty if you don’t that you will start sweeling beforeyou even finish dinner! OK so now let’s get to cooking!!
In a nonstick sauce pan melt butter, slowly whisk in flour, tablespoon at a time. Meanwhile warm milk in microwave 1.5 min (milk doesn’t have to be hot, but warm milk will keep gravu from lumping!!) Add milk and whisk a little at a time to keep smooth. After all milk is added do a splash of sherry & Worchestershire sauce this really adds a depth of flavor to the gravy. Cut beef over pot ( I use scissors!)  and mix well. Pour gravy over toast or bisquits, if you prefer.


Pesto Chicken

pesto chix

If you have been following you know how much I LOVE Pesto and I am always for looking for new ways to include it in my weekly menu. Check out my Perfect Pesto, I consider it perfect because it is so good but, not too strong which is the only complaint I have ever heard about pesto, some people like Tina will complain that it is too strong so the addition of the fresh spinach doesn’t change the taste, it mellows it a bit! YUM

Pesto Chicken

Boneless skinless chicken breast

garlic salt & pepper

1/2 cup Perfect Pesto

mozzarella cheese for topping

Pound chicken thin, top with pesto, cover with foil, bake 30-40 mins at 350, remove foil, top with cheese pop back in oven for 7-10 mins to melt cheese.


XOXO, Mama Bird

Pea Salad

pea salad

This is an old school recipe that I am sure has been around lots of church socials and pot lucks around the country. But, like a lot of the old school recipes IT IS GOOD and Oh it is so EASY!! Two of he best combos out there. Now don’t blink or you may miss this!

2 cans (LeSeur) peas with mushrooms & pearl onions

1 jar pimentos

1/3 c white wine vinegar

2/3 cup vegetable oil

salt & pepper to taste

THAT’S IT! Dump. Stir. Chill in fridge a few hours or overnight. ENJOY!

xoxo, Mama Bird

Italian Drip Beef {Crockpot Wednesday}


Woo- weeee Crockpot Wednesday is back! With School starting for lots of friends  (next week for us!) I love to share as many go-to recipes that make your family dinner quick and easy!!

This is a recipe that my dear friend and Crockpot Queen Jen shared with me and YOU!! ENJOY!

Italian Drip Beef

1 whole beef chuck roast

1 onion, chunked

1 can beef consommé or beef broth

3 tablespoon Italian seasoning (I used Good Seasons Salad Dressing)

salt & pepper

garlic powder

1/4 cup water, red wine or white wine

8 oz pepperoncini peppers, with juice

throw all in the cockpot cook on low all day!

Serve with: rolls and provolone cheese for a great steak sammie!!

xoxo, Mama Bird

{crockpot} Blushing Chicken

This is a super quick take on my creation Blushing Chicken. I just threw the main components in the crock pot and headed out the door!

Boneless/skinless chicken breast

1/2 c white wine

1/2 c chicken broth

1/4 c raspberry jam

Trader Joe’s 21 Seasoning Salute (spice blend)

Sprinkle chicken breast with spice. Mix all other ingredients in bowl and pour over top of chicken.  Great with steamed broccoli.

xoxo, Mama Bird

Red Pepper Honey Mustard Chicken

This is a super easy concoction that I came up with this morning while gawking in front of the fridge. I had some left over pepper jelly and decided to mix it with honey & Dijon mustard. I used equal parts of all three and allowed the chicken to marinate all day! Popped it in the oven for about 25 mins and then finished off on the grill. Enjoy!


Chicken Manicotti

this serves 6 or more so you can reduce and you can definitely spice it up with your own little touches of Italian.  have fun!
you will need…
IMG00293 28 oz of your favorite tomato pasta sauce 
1/2  cup chicken broth 
seasoning salt 
chicken breast tenders (uncooked) 
manicotti pasta shells, uncooked 
1 cup shredded Italian cheese 
Chopped fresh basil leaves
Heat oven to 350. Mix pasta sauce with water.  Spread about one third of the sauce in ungreased 13×9 baking dish.  Sprinkle garlic salt on chicken.  Insert chicken into uncooked shells, stuffing each end of shell to fill if necessary. Place shells on pasta sauce in baking dish.  Pour remaining sauce evenly over shells, covering completely.  Cover tightly with foil. 
Bake about 1 hour or until shells are tender  Sprinkle with cheese.  Bake uncovered about 5 minutes or until melted.  Sprinkle with basil.
It’s yummy and again SO EASY!!


Thai Shrimp Stew

This is a fantastic dish! It looks so gourmet and it is SO EASY to make!! It will impress your friends and family! Perfect for a Date Night or a Dinner Party!
Thanks to my girlfriend Katie who makes a very similar dish with a few differences in spices.
1 1/2 lb large shrimp in shell (21 to 25 per lb), peeled and deveined
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 (14- to 15-oz) can petite diced tomatoes including juice
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 sweet bell pepper, finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons curry
5 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1 can  lite coconut milk (shake well)
Serve with cooked white rice
Cook onion and bell pepper in olive oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately low heat, stirring, until softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Add curry, 1 tablespoon cilantro, and remaining teaspoon salt and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Toss shrimp with black pepper, 1/2 teaspoon salt, garlic, and lemon juice and marinate, covered and chilled, 15 minutes. (you want to do this here so that the shrimp doesn’t “cook” in the lemon juice) Add tomatoes and simmer briskly, stirring, until mixture is very thick, about 15 minutes.Stir in coconut milk and bring to a boil, then add shrimp mixture and cook, stirring, until shrimp are just cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes.Serve over rice.When I plate this, I usually take a 1/4 or a 1/2 measuring cup, scoop rice into, place it in the center of the plate, and then put it the stew around it.

Cranberry Horseradish Flank Steak

I had a flank steak in the freezer and wanted to do something other than the soy glaze I typically do and
I looked in the pantry and saw Cranberry Sauce the whole berry kind and decided I would make something up!  It was wonderful and will be fantastic leftover on top of a salad of mixed greens with some blue cheese. yum.
Here goes:
1/2 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1/4 cup each ketchup, soy sauce, Worcestershire
1Tb horseradish
salt & pepper to taste
Marinate at least 4hrs or overnight would be great. preheat oven on broil place steak in center of oven for 5-7mins per side. The sauce begins to caramelize and it is just yummy!