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Tag Archives: quick meals

  • Whistle Stop Chili

    We've had the Whistle Stop Chili at the market for a few years now.  A while back I brought a box home to try, but never got around to it.  While searching the kitchen cabinet, I found the box and finally decided to give it a go.  When I told my husband I was making chili at 5 o'clock, he instantly got a look on his face.  He also told me it was impossible to make good chili in such a short amount of time.  Little did he know, I had the Whistle Stop Chili starter.

    chili starter

    This dish dates back to the 1880s as a "poor people's food" and it all started in San Antonio, TX.  It was said the dish had as much pepper as chunks of meat.  Interestingly enough, chili is mostly served as an appetizer or side dish in today's restaurants.

    I followed the recipe on the back and cut it by half for the amount of meat I had.  I don't like red kidney beans, so I used Cannellini beans instead.  Cannellini beans are white kidney beans and I find them to be a bit creamier than their red kidney bean relative.  They are great in soups, stews and even in salads.  If you've never tried them, click here for 12 different ways to cook Cannellini beans.


    We had some roasted butternut squash leftovers, so I added it to our bowls and topped with cheddar cheese.  For the girls, I mashed the butternut squash in their bowls first, then added the chili.  They didn't even notice!  They enjoyed eating their meal and even asked for seconds.  Enjoy!


    Do you sneak veggies in your children's plates?

    How do you make your chili?

    Do you have a favorite bean?

  • Fast Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup

    With cold season in full swing, one of my favorite things to make is homemade chicken noodle soup.  There's just something about all the colorful veggies in a steamy broth that makes me smile.  For my version of homemade chicken noodle soup, I start with the "Holy Trinity Trio" of onion, celery and carrots.  Saute the veggies for a few minutes with a little olive oil.

    Onion, celery and carrots: "Holy Trinity Cooking Trio"

    What makes my chicken noodle fast, is that I use chicken stock/broth instead of water.  After working a full day at the market, I don't have time to make my own stock for the soup.   Sprinkle the chopped chicken breast pieces with Everglades Seasoning.

    Japanese Rice Noodles

    Here's where I like to get creative.  You can add any kind of pasta for your "noodles" or even rice.  This time, I decided to use some Japanese rice noodles I had in my pantry.   Add the noodles and cook for a few more minutes.

    This is definitively one of those meals were everyone wants more.  Cold or not, I enjoy having eating soup anytime of the year.

    Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup:

    1 medium onion

    2 carrots, peeled, diced

    2 celery stalks, diced

    1 garlic clove, minced

    2 chicken breasts, diced

    Everglades seasoning

    44 oz chicken broth/stock


    Start by sauteing the veggies with some olive oil.  Season chicken  with Everglades Seasoning.  Lightly brown the chicken pieces.  Add chicken stock and simmer for about 30 minutes.  Add noodles and follow package instructions.  Enjoy!

    Are you a "soup person"? What's your favorite soup?

  • 100% Fresh Pressed Apple Cider from PA available now...

    For the past month, I've been pestering asking my husband for apple cider.  You see, eight years ago, we visited Connecticut in the fall for our friends' wedding.  While we were visiting, we ventured to a local apple orchard and had the best apple cider ever.  This was our first time at an apple orchard.  Needless to say, we came back home with a ton of apples!


    Now every October, when our friends celebrate their wedding anniversary I also remember our visit to the apple orchard and that wonderful apple cider.  Our new apple guy has been bringing us some amazingly fresh apples from Pennsylvania.  As luck would have it, he was able to get us some of this wonderfully fresh 100% pressed apple cider.


    100% fresh pressed Apple Cider from Country Acres, Waynesboro, Pennsylvania.


    Have you ever cooked with apple cider? Me neither.  Until I found this recipe from Rachel Ray.  The recipe calls for making your own apple sauce.  I skipped that step.  Instead, I just used two small containers of already made apple sauce.  I warmed it up with minced ginger and sprinkled it with nutmeg and cinnamon to taste.  Rachel Ray's recipe calls for apple juice to deglaze the pan.  I chose our apple cider instead! And of course, I used our Troyer real butter.  Instead of salt and pepper, I used our Everglades Seasoning.


    I served the apple sauce on the side for dipping, and pour the pan sauce over the pork chop.   I've never been a real fan of the pork and apple sauce combination until now.  The pan sauce was delicious.  It was salty and sweet and very flavorful.  The mixture of real butter and fresh apple cider in the pan sauce made our dinner taste kinda like apple pie!  But in a good way.  A very savory apple pie.

    P.S. In case you are wondering, the salad is from ABC Pizza.  They make a great Greek salad. ;)


    Have you ever cooked dinner with apple juice or cider?


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