Alpine Chicken

Alpine Chicken

4 C. diced, cooked chicken

2 C. sliced celery

2 C. croutons- I use Trader Joe’s (2 packages)

1 C mayonnaise

1/2 C. milk

1/4 C. chopped onion ( I do this sometimes)

1 tsp. salt

8 oz. Swiss cheese (sometimes I use more)

1/4 C. slivered almonds, toasted (sometimes I use toasted, sometimes not)

Combine milk and mayo in a small bowl. Combine all other ingredients in a large bowl, except the nuts.

Pour mayo/milk mixture over all and coat evenly. Pour into 2 qt. or 13 x 9 casserole dish.

Sprinkle on nuts. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes.

Sometimes I add a little more milk/mayo if it looks a bit dry.

Low fat cheese or mayo don’t work very well. Not as creamy.

Eggplant Parmesean

You have to be in the right mood for eggplant … or so I thought. I’ve never had much luck cooking this veggie quite right, it often comes out soft and mushy. But this recipe is to the rescue! The eggplant comes out crispy and delicious every time. I revisited it after buying a lovely looking eggplant at the Farmers Market and was so glad I did. Such a great non-meat dinner option. If you are in a hurry, just skip making your own sauce and use a jar.


New Best Recipes Cookbook

Use kosher salt when salting the eggplant. The coarse grains don’t dissolve as readily as the fine grains of regular table salt, so any excess can be easily wiped away. To be time-efficient, use the 30 to 45 minutes during which the salted eggplant sits to prepare the breading, cheeses, and sauce.

2 pounds globe eggplant (2 medium eggplants), cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
1 tablespoon kosher salt
8 slices high-quality white bread (about 8 ounces), torn into quarters 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese (about 2 ounces)
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
4 large eggs
6 tablespoons vegetable oil

Tomato Sauce

3 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 medium cloves garlic , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1 generous tablespoon)
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves chopped

8 ounces whole milk mozzarella or part-skim mozzarella, shredded (2 cups) 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (about 1 ounce)
10 fresh basil leaves torn, for garnish


1. FOR THE EGGPLANT: Toss half of eggplant slices and 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt in large bowl until combined; transfer salted eggplant to large colander set over bowl. Repeat with remaining eggplant and kosher salt, placing second batch in colander on top of first. Let stand until eggplant releases about 2 tablespoons liquid, 30 to 45 minutes. Arrange eggplant slices on triple layer paper towels; cover with another triple layer paper towels. Firmly press each slice to remove as much liquid as possible, then wipe off excess salt.

2. While eggplant is draining, adjust oven racks to upper- and lower-middle positions, place rimmed baking sheet on each rack, and heat oven to 425 degrees. Pulse bread in food processor to fine, even crumbs, about fifteen 1-second pulses (you should have about 4 cups). Transfer crumbs to pie plate and stir in 1 cup Parmesan, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; set aside. Wipe out bowl (do not wash) and set aside.

3. Combine flour and 1 teaspoon pepper in large zipper-lock bag; shake to combine. Beat eggs in second pie plate. Place 8 to 10 eggplant slices in bag with flour; seal bag and shake to coat eggplant. Remove eggplant slices, shaking off excess flour, dip in eggs, let excess egg run off, then coat evenly with bread crumb mixture; set breaded slices on wire rack set over baking sheet. Repeat with remaining eggplant.

4. Remove preheated baking sheets from oven; add 3 tablespoons oil to each sheet, tilting to coat evenly with oil. Place half of breaded eggplant on each sheet in single layer; bake until eggplant is well browned and crisp, about 30 minutes, switching and rotating baking sheets after 10 minutes, and flipping eggplant slices with wide spatula after 20 minutes. Do not turn off oven.

5. FOR THE SAUCE: While eggplant bakes, process 2 cans diced tomatoes in food processor until almost smooth, about 5 seconds. Heat olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes in large heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and garlic is light golden, about 3 minutes; stir in processed and remaining can of diced tomatoes. Bring sauce to boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened and reduced, about 15 minutes (you should have about 4 cups). Stir in basil and season to taste with salt and pepper.

6. TO ASSEMBLE: Spread 1 cup tomato sauce in bottom of 13 by 9-inch baking dish. Layer in half of eggplant slices, overlapping slices to fit; distribute 1 cup sauce over eggplant; sprinkle with half of mozzarella. Layer in remaining eggplant and dot with 1 cup sauce, leaving majority of eggplant exposed so it will remain crisp; sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan and remaining mozzarella. Bake until bubbling and cheese is browned, 13 to 15 minutes. Cool 10 minutes; scatter basil over top, and serve, passing remaining tomato sauce separately.

Homemade Enchilada Sauce

Oooh, how have I not made homemade enchilada sauce before? In an effort to get away from canned goods, I’ve been trying to make more of the basics. I found this enchilada sauce to be much more flavorful and (surprise surprise) tasted so much fresher. I would suggest blending the tomatoes before you put them in – especially if you are using diced instead of crushed like I did. I needed to add quite a bit of water at the end to get it the right consistency to pour over enchiladas. I liked this version, too, because if you want a lower spicy level (perfect for boys) just decrease the chili powder. I only had 1/4 tablespoon on hand when I made it and it was great for their little mouths. Next time I will double it and freeze some to have on hand!


  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • .5 cup sweet Vidalia onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • .5 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • .5 teaspoon salt
  • 28 ounces crushed tomatoes


Heat large pan and saute onions and garlic in oil until soft. Add chicken broth and remaining ingredients. Simmer for 30 minutes. Use as directed in recipes.

Freezing Directions:

Freeze sauce in a gallon freezer bag. Thaw to use in recipes.

Summer Vegetable Enchiladas

Yum! We had these enchiladas last night, after a fellow community gardener gave me some extra squash! I left out the chicken to make them vegetarian and we did not miss the meat. Great way to get in your veggie servings.

Sweet Summer Vegetable Enchiladas

Kim @



Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute zucchini, pepper, and corn until tender. Remove from heat and stir in black beans and chicken. Pour one cup of enchilada sauce in the bottom of 8×8 pans. Divide black bean mixture evenly among tortillas, top with two tablespoons cheese, and roll. Place seam side down in the pan. Pour remaining sauce over top of the enchiladas. Reserve remaining cheese for baking. Bake covered at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Remove foil, top with remaining cheese and bake for 10-15 more minutes until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve.

Freezing Directions:

Cover baking pans tightly with foil and freeze before baking. Freeze remaining cheese in a small freezer bag. TO SERVE: Thaw and bake as directed above. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve.

Servings: 4