Salmon Stir Fry (Super quick and super tasty!)

Salmon Stir-Fry (Super quick, and super tasty!)

This Salmon Stir-Fry was devised because I am always trying to come up with really easy and fast recipes, that still have a slight twist of gourmet, for my family and I. This is one of my favorites, that has pretty much been perfected by now!

It only takes four ingredients, and about roughly fifteen to twenty minutes to put together. Continue reading

HONEY APPLE ROASTED HAM (a very quick and easy, delicious recipe!)

Usually I remember to make supper — but sometimes I just get so busy that I forget to take out meat to thaw, and I end up in a pinch! This is why I have been trying to come up with more quick and easy recipes, that don’t have to sacrifice flavor!

I’ve really been trying to keep my freezer stocked up with a variety of frozen meats, beef, pork, chicken, and with emergency frozen vegetables as well… corn, peas and carrots, etc.

Lately, every time that I am at the grocery store, I try to remember to grab a couple of hams to throw in there, because; 1. They are usually pre-cooked so they cook up really quickly, and 2. If you are like me, and always forget to take meat out of the freezer so that it can be thawed in time for supper, you can easily defrost it in a bowl of cold water.

So the other night, I realized that I of course, forgot to take something out of the freezer for supper, and instead of having a full-on panic attack, I instead ran out to the deep freeze in the garage and pulled out a ham… Whew — Crisis averted!

And well, that brings us to this new and exciting, super easy and quick ham recipe…

What you’ll need:

  • Honey (about ½ a cup)
  • Apple Juice (1 juice box – yep, I said juice box… I am a busy mom!)
  • Pepper (just a sprinkle for extra flavor)
  • Ham

Step One: Slice the ham up so that it is about ¼” thick, and then put the ham into a casserole baking dish.

Step Two: Pour the box of apple juice over the ham.

Step Three: Pour the honey over the ham, and then sprinkle on the pepper on top.

Step Four: Cover and bake in the oven at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes.

Step Five: Serve and enjoy!

Psst! Looking for the perfect side dish to go with your ham?! Check out my yummy Double Baked Loaded Potatoes!

 

Ten Minute Tuna Pasta Salad!

2Summer is finally here! BBQ’s and summer get-together’s are in the air!

Tonight I thought that I would share with you one of my favorite, go-to side dishes — Tuna Pasta Salad…. The best part about this salad is that it can be ready in just ten minutes!

This salad always knows how to get me out of a jam when I come home late from work and have to be somewhere ASAP, and this pasta salad is always there for me when I forget to plan out dinner and need something quick and tasty…. I guess, if salads were besties, this one would be mine!

All you need is:

  • 1/2 a bag of Pasta (I prefer small shells for this pasta, but just about any type will do!)
  • 1 can of Tuna
  • 1/4 cup of chopped Green or Regular Onions (Whichever you have on hand!)
  • 1/4 cup of chopped Celery
  • 2/3 cup of Mayo
  • 6 dashes of Hot Sauce
  • Pepper

Step One: The very first thing I do in order to get the ball rolling for this pasta is get my water boiling, and my pasta on.

Step Two: While the pasta is cooking, I take full advantage of the time, and get my veggies (onions and celery), all chopped up and into a big bowl.

Step Three: Next I drain my can of tuna, and then add it to my big bowl.

Step Four: I then throw in my mayo and hot sauce. My favorite mayo to use is Hellman’s because I love “salty”, but any type of mayo will work!

Step Five: As soon as my pasta is soft, I then pour it into a big strainer. I usually let my pasta cook for about 7 minutes, but you can check your packaging for exact timing!

Step Six: I run cold water all over my pasta, and stir it with a spoon while doing so. This really helps it cool down fast…. A great trick for when you are always late like me, or just in a huge hurry!

Step Seven: After your pasta is cool and drained, add it into the big bowl and mix, mix, mix!

Step Eight: Place pasta into your favorite serving dish, garnish with celery leaves, sprinkle with pepper, and enjoy!

Tip: This salad keeps very well if you wanted to make it a day ahead, or eat the yummy leftovers for lunch the next day!

 

Weekly Meal Plan – A How-To Guide


Weekly Meal Plan - A How-To Guide

Ok, here’s how to do it! Here’s how to save a TON of money per month! It’s really simple, it’s really easy…. and I’ll give you a hint: It has to do with FOOD!

Yes — If you are anything like my husband and I, we eat out everyday for lunch…. breakfast too! And at night, we find it way too easy to give in to our daily cravings of whatever might come our way…. Maybe it was that Burger King that we drove by on the way home from work, that DQ commercial that we just saw on TV…. Or perhaps, we just feel unorganized and lazy and nothing seems more appealing than my absolute favorite go-to meal: Pizza!



Well, guess what…. those days are over! It’s time to shape up, it’s time to start saving money and it’s time to eat a little healthier! So here’s how we are going to do it….. with a WEEKLY MEAL PLAN! I’m not only going to show you an easy way to do it, but a super-versatile way too, so you don’t get super-bored and give up!

Ready, set, go!

Step One – Create the base: Designate each night of the week for a type of meat, (or protein if you don’t care for meat!) or a certain meal “type”. I would define a meal “type” as something like tacos, or casserole, or even crock-pot! By doing this, you are predetermining what you are going to need to purchase or take out of the freezer ahead of time.

Step Two – Make a list of side dishes: You can use this list and switch up your choices for different nights of different weeks, and this way, you’re sure to never get bored! Let’s face it — This isn’t the 1950’s and we don’t want to sit down and eat meat, potatoes, carrots — every single night!




To give you an idea, here is what the base of my weekly meal plan looks like:

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Now I’m going to give you some different ideas for these different categories, which include links to some of the best recipes out there! Go ahead, try them out! Eat yummy and save money! 😉

Chicken Recipes

Taco Recipes

Casserole Recipes




Pork Recipes

Beef Recipes

Crock-Pot

Side Dishes


HERE ARE SOME MORE RECIPES THAT YOU MAY ENJOY!

Four Ingredient Gourmet Burgers (The quick and tasty burger hack!)

3 Ingredient Meat-Loaf

Get More out of your Hamburger Helper

Honey Apple Roasted Ham (A very quick and easy, delicious recipe!)

Steak Marinade! Perfect for Grilling!


Weekly Meal Plan - A How-To Guide


*This post may contain affiliate links.

Healthy, Easy, Yummy — Apple Chutney!

Healthy, Easy, Yummy — Apple Chutney!

Prep Time: 5 minutes, Bake Time: 10 minutes

Hello, hello everyone! It’s been a little while since the Project Pile has done a recipe… we have just been so busy around here! Last September I started teaching at our local college, then I starting working on another “project” for another company here in town…. Plus, we are now expecting again — Yes, expecting! So, now it’s the end of the school year, I thought that I would share this really yummy, really easy and healthy apple chutney recipe that I came up with last week when I had to quickly throw together one of those last minute, yet super delicious, home-cooked meals!

I needed the perfect side to go with my pork chops…. something fresh, crisp and summery…. and then it came to me — Apple chutney! Now, here’s the interesting part, the part where my chutney differs a little bit from other recipes…. there is no vinegar in this chutney recipe at all! The vinegar is actually replaced with cranberry juice, which allows the amount of sugar required to be significantly reduced, therefore making it much healthier than your typical chutney recipes! 🙂

So here it goes — hope you enjoy!

All you need is:

  • 3 diced Apples
  • 1/4 cup of Cranberry Juice
  • 1/4 cup of diced Onions
  • 1/4 cup of Sunflower Seeds
  • 1/4 cup of Cranberries
  • 1 tsp of Butter or Margarine
  • 1 tsp of Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of cinnamon

Step One: In a small or medium sized frying pan, saute onions on medium heat in the butter or margarine, until golden-brown.

Tip: Add any extra seasoning that you like during the sauteing process, for extra flavor!

Step Two: Add the apples, cinnamon and cranberry juice. Bring to a boil, then cover and let simmer for seven minutes, or until the apples are soft.

Tip: The cooking time will vary depending on the type of apples that you use. The softer the apple, the less time it will take for them to soften.

Step Three: Stir in the brown sugar and simmer for about two more minutes.

Tip: The addition of the brown sugar won’t only sweeten the mixture, but it will help to thicken it a little too, as it cools.

Step Four: Remove the mixture from heat, and add the sunflower seeds and dried cranberries — Then serve and enjoy!

Tip: It’s best to add the cranberries and sunflower seeds at the very end of the process, otherwise they may harden.

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The Best Crock Pot Chili!

Mmm…. On a cold or rainy day, this chili is my go-to meal! Not only does this chili taste amazing — it’s also kind of a “cheater” chili, meaning that its so easy to make! I used canned beans, canned tomatoes and frozen vegetables — such a time saver! But remember, if you wanted to replace these canned items with fresh ingredients instead, you absolutely can! Oh and just in case you are wondering… the vegetables totally cancel out the bacon! 😉

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What You’ll Need:

1 lb of hamburger

1 package of bacon

1 medium diced onion

1 can of bean medley (mixed beans)

1 can of baked beans (in maple sauce)

1 can of diced tomatoes

1 cup of frozen veggies (peas, carrots, corn, green and Lima beans)

1 cup of diced mushrooms

1 1/4 tsp of cumin or chili powder

1 tsp hot sauce

2 tbsp of ketchup

Step One: In a frying pan, saute hamburger, onions, mushrooms and bacon.

Tip: During this step is where you can throw in any extra seasoning if you like! Sometimes I’ll add oregano, thyme, or even just plain old salt and pepper.

Step Two: After the meat mixture has been prepared and drained, add the mixture plus all of your other ingredients into the crock pot.

Tip: If there are any veggies that you don’t totally love in this recipe, feel free to substitute them with some veggies that you do love!

Step Three: Turn the crock pot onto high and let everything simmer together for three to four hours.

Tip: If you are going to be away all day, turn your crock pot to the low setting rather than high…. this way it can simmer all day long and won’t burn!

Step Four: Serve your chili in a nice big bowl, and enjoy!

Tip: Cheesy garlic bread, or a nice soft bun with butter are the perfect addition to this meal…. oh and maybe a nice big glass of red wine too! 🙂

Savory Southern Stew

3Savory Southern Stew!

I’m so excited that it finally got a little bit cold here in Southern-Ontario! In order to celebrate, I decided to make my favorite stew and I thought…. why not share it with you! It is seriously the easiest stew to make… All you have to do is lightly saute the beef, and then throw everything into the crock pot to simmer for the day!

What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup of chopped or baby carrots
  • 1 cup of diced potatoes
  • 1 cup of mushrooms
  • 1.5 lbs of cubed beef
  • 2 tbsp of butter or margarine
  • 1 can of condensed tomato soup
  • 1/4 tsp each, of  salt, pepper and thyme

Step 1: Lightly saute about 1.5 lbs of cubed beef in a frying pan in butter and pepper.

While sauteing your cubes of beef, this is where you could add in one and a half tablespoons of flour for a thicker stew. I chose to leave the flour out, since I’ve been trying really, really hard to eat super-healthy! If you are looking for a thicker stew, after your meat is sauteed, toss it in the flour until all of the flour has been absorbed… It will later mix in nice with the rest of the contents of your stew, causing it to thicken, but by mixing it in with the meat first, you will prevent the flour from clumping!

Step 2: Add beef, carrots, potatoes, mushrooms, onions, spices, and one can of condensed tomato soup into the crock pot.

For this stew, I chose to use some of my favorite vegetables; carrots, potatoes, mushrooms and onions…. but really, you can use whatever kind of vegetables you like, or even whatever you already have on hand! I also used just a few of my favorite spices to keep it nice and simple, but you can also choose to use your favorite spices too!

Step 3: Let simmer for at least 4 to 6 hours.

I like to let my stew simmer all day long to make it extra savory! But since the meat is pre-sauteed, you really only have to make sure that your vegetables are cooked all of the way through before serving. Remember, that the smaller you chop your vegetables, the quicker they will be ready!

Step 4: Serve and enjoy! 🙂

A nice dinner roll or slice of bread with butter (plus maybe, a glass of wine)…. make the perfect accessories for this meal!

Cranberry Brie Appetizer

5Whether entertaining over the holidays, or during any time of the year, this Cranberry Brie appetizer is the perfect dish!

What you need:

1 wheel of Brie Cheese

1 cup of frozen Cranberries

1 Tbsp of Margarine or Butter

2 Tbsp of Brown Sugar

1/4 cup of chopped Almonds or Walnuts (Optional!)

1/8 cup of Kahlua (Optional!)

In a sauce pan, melt the butter, add the cranberries and simmer until the cranberries are soft. Stir in the brown sugar and Kahlua. Let simmer until the mixture is thickened…. for approximately 10 minutes. Remember the mixture will thicken as it sits, as well. Remove from heat and stir in the nuts of your choice.

Slice off the top of the brie cheese wheel, but leave it in place. Next, place the brie cheese wheel in tin foil, (this makes it easier to transfer out of the oven and onto a serving tray). Bake in the oven for 10 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Remove the brie cheese wheel from the oven and place it onto a serving tray. Then, remove the top of the Brie cheese wheel, and place the cranberry mixture on top. Serve with crackers and enjoy!

If you are looking for another yummy appetizer to make, check out this amazing 3 Ingredient Crab Dip…. Its my fav!!!!

Sweet Roasted Squash

 

3Sweet Roasted Squash
Besides tasting absolutely amazing, this dish is also super easy to make!
All you need:
1 Squash (of any type)
1 Tbsp. of Margarine or Butter
3 Tbsp. of Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup of Cream
Slice your squash in half and place face down on a baking sheet. Add a layer of water to cover the baking sheet, and bake in the oven for 40 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Once your squash is done baking, scrape the squash out of the shell and into a bowl. Mash the squash, cream, butter and 1 Tbsp of Brown Sugar all together. Place the mixture into a baking dish and sprinkle the remaining brown sugar on top. Place back into the oven and broil on high for 4-8 minutes, until you get a bubbly brown-sugar topping, (broiling time may vary, dependent on the oven). Serve and enjoy!