Archive | November, 2010

Cheeseburger & Fries Casserole

21 Nov

Hey everyone! I hope you’re all enjoying your weekend!

For this week’s LION BITE, I wanted to share with you a recipe I made earlier this week for a potluck dinner that I hosted: Cheeseburger & Fries Casserole.  I know, sounds amazing, right?  That’s because it is!  It’s stick to your bones American deliciousness all in one 9×13 pan!  I love anything that can be thrown together in a baking dish or crock pot and be ready with very little attention from me when I’m having a busy week.  This recipe is one I found in my Better Homes & Gardens: 9×13 The Pan That Can Cookbook

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 lbs lean ground beef
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 10.75 oz can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 10.75 oz can cheddar cheese soup
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 3/4 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
  • 1 20 oz bag of frozen french fries
  • various seasonings: garlic salt, paprika, seasoned salt & oregano


Start off,  by browning your ground beef in a large pan with the garlic powder and finely diced onion.  I split mine into two batches because it was easier to brown that way.  Then I dumped it into a 9X13 baking dish (ungreased).

I mixed the two cans of soup in a bowl until they were well blended & poured this over the browned hamburger, then mixed in 1/2 cup cheddar cheese to the whole thing.

I like well seasoned fries, so I cut the top of my bag of frozen fries & seasoned with garlic salt, paprika, seasoned salt & oregano, closed the top of the bag and shook it up.  Then I just topped my burger & soup mixture with the french fries and baked in the oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

After 45 minutes, I added the leftover 1/4 cup of cheddar cheese to the top & put it back in the oven until the cheese was melted.


This was simple, fairly inexpensive and very well liked, especially by the guys, at the potluck!  Definitely give it a try for one of those nights you’re craving burgers but comfort food all at once!


WE ARE…happy to be home for Thanksgiving break.


Southwest (Tex-Mex) Soup

16 Nov

Hey everyone!! Sorry for the late update! I know I’ve been bad at getting this out on Sundays lately but I have been super super busy.  My entire weekend I didn’t even have an hour that I didn’t have something specific to do! It was crazy!

So the weather has been getting colder, and that always puts me in the mood for soup.  ESPECIALLY soups like chili.  The LION BITE for this week is a chili-like mexican inspired soup that my mom got the recipe for last year. When she made it I loved it immediately.  I have made it multiple times since she acquired the recipe, making little variations each

time.  It’s so easy to personalize this soup to your liking.  The best part is that the only effort required is to brown the meat & give it an occasional stir! This truly is a dump and stir recipe.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 lb ground beef or ground turkey (Both work excellently. I usually use whatever is cheaper…broke college student :-/)
  • 1 can black beans (drained)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (I used fired roasted this time for some extra spice)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes & green chiles
  • 1 can of water (can just be from the tap)
  • 1 packet of taco seasoning or chili seasoning
    If desired: 1 tbsp garlic powder,
    diced onion, diced peppers, etc

To start off the recipe, I brown my ground beef/turkey in a skillet with garlic powder and    salt & pepper (chopping into small chunks the whole time as though you are making    tacos). Although I didn’t this particular time, I would add the onion in with the browned  beef if I were using it.   While the meat is browning, start a large pot over high heat with  both cans of diced tomatoes, drained black beans & water and allow that to start to  simmer.

Once the beef/turkey is cooked entirely through, I would then drain off the excess grease   from the meat & add this to my sauce pot.  After this simmers awhile, I stir in about half a  packet of either taco seasoning or chili seasoning (save the other half for next time!), and  turn the heat down to medium-low.  Cover and allow this to simmer for about an hour,  stirring occasionally and enjoy!!! This recipe makes enough for multiple people or enough  for you to have the next day for lunch AND dinner if you want!  That’s one reason I really  like it.  It’s simple, quick and delicious.

I like to top my soup with shredded cheese & tortilla chips!


My Tips:

  • If you don’t like spicy things, stick with the mild chiles & diced tomatoes, but they have a “hot” version for all you heat lovers out there!
  • This is a great way to use up leftover taco meat by just adding it to the soup & skipping adding the seasoning packet later.  You can also use up any leftover onions & peppers you have in your fridge.
  • Don’t forget to check on it occasionally! You might need to adjust the heat on your stove. You don’t want it to boil over!
  • Serve topped with shredded cheese & crunched tortilla chips!

WE ARE…. having a potluck dinner tonight so check back soon for another update!!!

A Trip to the Cheese Farm!!!

7 Nov

Any of you that know me know that I LOVE cheese (in fact, I’ve never met a cheese I didn’t enjoy!), so you can guess how excited I was when we took a trip with the Catering Club to a local cheese farm!

Last Monday, our club spent the day at Stone Meadow Farm in Woodward, PA, where we were treated to a presentation from the farmer who showed us how he makes cheese with raw milk from his own cows! Now that’s local cheese!  When we arrived, the farmer had already started his cheese-making process by adding rennet, which contains rennin (the enzyme to make cheese) to the milk. . After slicing down into the semi-solid milk/rennin mixture into cubes in a giant vat, they mixed that up & began to ladle it into cylindrical containers placed on mesh wire.  This allows the curds to stay in the cylinder and the whey to compress. That day, he was making Tellegio & brie cheeses. After some time, the curds compress upon themselves and whey drains out, so that the cylinders shrink down! I thought that was so cool! I had been to a cheese farm in Holland before, but never knew about this process!

Ladling the curds & whey into the cylinders

We even got to have some samples of various cheeses including: Tellegio, Cheddar, Jalapeño Jack, Camembert & Swiss.  They were all delicious! Some of us even sampled the whey.

While the curds & whey compressed, he took us into his storage cooler and showed us all the cheese he had stored in vacuum sealed packages. We had a picnic out on the yard & of course we all purchased some cheese to take home with us!  This was a really cool experience.  If you ever get the chance to see this, I really encourage you to do it!!

Support your local farmers at your nearby farmer’s market! It’s not all about the veggies & fruits! They’ve got some really cool products & I encourage you to explore everything they have to offer!