Category Archives: Recipes

Kel’s Creamed Chipped Beef on Toast

SOS on toast

When’s the last time you had creamed chipped beef (affectionately referred to as SOS in the military)? It had been a while for me, which is a shame because I love this creamy and delicious comfort food and have been making my own since my college days. I have a husband that doesn’t care much for food with sauces or gravies (unbelievable, I know), so lately the only time I get to enjoy creamed chipped beef is in a restaurant, usually for breakfast/brunch.

Let's eat!

The other night I came home from water aerobics and Brad and the kids had already eaten. It had been dreary all week and much cooler than normal for a North Carolina spring. I knew I wanted something warm and satisfying that wouldn’t take long to make and was thrilled to run across a jar of dried beef. Perfect – SOS to the rescue.

Continue reading

Tip of the Month, April 2013: Salad in a Jar

These look great!

Several weeks ago, I opened the refrigerator at work and this cute little Mason jar filled with a salad. Curious, I asked around and found out it belonged to my friend and coworker Denise. She had seen this on Pinterest and was giving it a try. I did some research to find out what this Salad in Jar stuff was all about and learned that it’s a great way to keep salad fresh for several days, since the lettuce doesn’t get soggy. But the big thing for me is that by making several salads at once, you save lots of time. One of the reasons I haven’t (until now) taken salads to work very often is because I found it too time consuming to make them, especially when trying to get the kids ready for school, etc. So I was happy to give this a try to see if the salads would stay as fresh as people were claiming.

Continue reading

Creamy Corn, Cheese and Bacon Casserole

Kel's Creamy Corn Cheese and Bacon Casserole

There are few foods that I dislike and cream corn is near the top of that list. Until now. I guess that’s because the only kind of cream corn I’ve tried has been that out of a can, which is totally disgusting as far as I’m concerned. As a kid I don’t remember having to eat it whenever we had it for dinner, probably because I loved almost everything else so my parents let me slide.

I was looking for a recipe for a corn and cheese casserole that did not include any type of bread and ran across one from Saveur.com that looked great, mainly because it included a pièce de résistance: bacon. Fresh corn, cheese AND bacon — I knew I had to give it a try. We are all glad that I did – everyone loved it. I changed the recipe some by doubling the bacon (no surprise there) and adding some red bell pepper and sweet onion. What a rich, creamy, sweet yet slightly smoky casserole that melts in your mouth! The only thing I would do different next time is to triple the bacon.

Continue reading

Kel’s Easy Black Bean and Garbanzo Salad (Vegan)

Kel's Cafe Black Bean and Garbanzo salad

With warm weather finally on the horizon, I made this easy black bean and garbanzo (chickpea) salad. It takes about five minutes to assemble and once it has been refrigerated for 30 minutes or so it is ready to be enjoyed! Not only is this hearty salad full of fiber and good for you, it tastes fantastic.

This is a great dish to make for a pot-luck get-together – the guests will eat it up!

Continue reading

Kel’s Crispy Oven-Baked Tilapia

Lovely piece of fish @kelscafe

For years I’ve been buying what Brad and I refer to as “oven fish” from Whole Foods or Fresh Market. “Oven fish” is simply fish filets such as tilapia, trout or flounder, encrusted in some sort of bread crumb mixture that may include Parmesan cheese and/or nuts such as pecans, pistachios or almonds. Simply bake for 20 minutes or so, and voilà, you have an easy and delicious main dish to serve for dinner. But the breaded fish usually comes at a price, as most prepared “fresh” foods do – the other day it was $10.99/lb.

So I decided to save some money and make my own encrusted fish. I found some great tilapia filets for $6.99/lb. Sliced almonds were also on sale and became my nut of choice.

Tilapia on sale!

I’m not 100% sure what the stores use to make the crust stick on the fish, but decided to give mine a bit of a kick with Dijon mustard. Excellent choice! It gave the filets a nice depth of flavor that the store-bought fish does not have. It takes a little bit longer to prepare this fish instead of buying the store-bought, but not by much and what you save makes it all worthwhile!

Continue reading

Kel’s Crispy Oven-Baked Tilapia

Lovely piece of fish @kelscafeFor years I’ve been buying what Brad and I refer to as “oven fish” from Whole Foods or Fresh Market. “Oven fish” is simply fish filets such as tilapia, trout or flounder, encrusted in some sort of bread crumb mixture that may include Parmesan cheese and/or nuts such as pecans, pistachios or almonds. Simply bake for 20 minutes or so, and voilà, you have an easy and delicious main dish to serve for dinner. But the breaded fish usually comes at a price, as most prepared “fresh” foods do – the other day it was $10.99/lb.

So I decided to save some money and make my own encrusted fish. I found some great tilapia filets for $6.99/lb. Sliced almonds were also on sale and became my nut of choice.

Tilapia on sale!

I’m not 100% sure what the stores use to make the crust stick on the fish, but decided to give mine a bit of a kick with Dijon mustard. Excellent choice! It gave the filets a nice depth of flavor that the store-bought fish does not have. It takes a little bit longer to prepare this fish instead of buying the store-bought, but not by much and what you save makes it all worthwhile!

Continue reading

Kel’s Homemade Italian Pizza with Turkey Meatballs

 

Kel's homemade Italian Pizza

I recently made some turkey meatballs (see Kel’s Tasty Turkey Meatballs for Pasta, Pizza and Pitas) and promised I would share my recipe for homemade Italian pizza. These meatballs have the right balance of seasonings and the addition of the paprika gives them a nice, smoky kick.

Turkey meatballs

The savory meatballs, sweet onions, slight bitterness of the green peppers and the mild black olives are a perfect combination on my homemade herb and garlic crust. Continue reading

Kel’s Homemade Italian Pizza with Turkey Meatballs

Kel's homemade Italian Pizza

I recently made some turkey meatballs (see Kel’s Tasty Turkey Meatballs for Pasta, Pizza and Pitas) and promised I would share my recipe for homemade Italian pizza. These meatballs have the right balance of seasonings and the addition of the paprika gives them a nice, smoky kick.

Turkey meatballs

The savory meatballs, sweet onions, slight bitterness of the green peppers and the mild black olives are a perfect combination on my homemade herb and garlic crust.

  Continue reading

Kel’s Red and Green Cabbage Sautéed With Garlic in Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Kel's Red and Green Cabbage

I’ve been making this simple and delicious sautéed cabbage for years, long before I met Brad. Brad hates cooked cabbage, but I bet he would change his mind if he would just give this a try. It has some crunch to it, plus the garlic and olive oil give it a wonderful flavor. If you have any cabbage left over from your St. Patrick’s Day feast, instead of steaming or boiling it, try it this way — you’ll be glad you did!

Continue reading

Kel’s Corned Beef and Cabbage Soup, Ninja-Style

Soup's on!

With St. Patrick’s Day quickly approaching, I thought I’d share my recipe for this awesome soup for those of you who may have leftover corned beef. This is so easy to assemble and a breeze to make in your Ninja® 3-in-1 cooking system. Don’t have a Ninja yet? I have included instructions on how to make this on your stovetop in the “Preparation” section below.

One of the things I love about this festive soup is that it’s something that you don’t run across every day in stores or restaurants. That’s a shame because it is so delicious. Plus, since March can be quite blustery and cold depending on where you live, a nice hot bowl of this hearty soup is just the ticket. Even if you only make this once a year, you will be glad you did! Savor every drop.

Continue reading