This recipe came with its own crust recipe, but to save time, I used a sheet of puff pastry and cut it to fit the baking dish. Enjoy!

3 cups Chicken Stock, divided
2 1/3 cups cubed red potato (about 1 pound)
1 cup (1/4-inch-thick) sliced carrot
2 teaspoons butter or stick margarine
1/2 cup chopped shallots or onions
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups diced cooked chicken
1 cup frozen petite green peas
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
Dash of black pepper
Cooking spray
2 teaspoons 1% low-fat milk

Preheat oven to 400°.

To prepare filling, bring 2 1/2 cups Chicken Stock to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add potato and carrot; cook 2 minutes. Drain mixture in a colander over a bowl, reserving cooking liquid.

Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add shallots; cook 3 minutes. Lightly spoon 1/2 cup flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine 1/2 cup flour and 1/2 cup Chicken Stock; stir with a whisk. Add to skillet. Stir in potato mixture, reserved cooking liquid, chicken, peas, 3/4 teaspoon salt, thyme, and pepper. Cook 10 minutes. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Spoon chicken mixture into a 1 1/2-quart casserole dish coated with cooking spray. Please puff pastry on top of mixture and press edges. Cut 5 slits in top of crust to allow steam to escape. Gently brush crust with milk. Bake at 400° for 25 minutes or until golden. Let stand 10 minutes.


I made this last Friday night for dinner and I ate it through Wednesday! I makes a ton and is a great remedy for the winter!

French Onion Soup – From CookingLight

2 teaspoons olive oil
4 cups thinly vertically sliced Walla Walla or other sweet onion
4 cups thinly vertically sliced red onion
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup dry white wine
8 cups less-sodium beef broth
1/4 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
8 (1-ounce) slices French bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
8 (1-ounce) slices reduced-fat, reduced-sodium Swiss cheese (such as Alpine Lace)

Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onions to pan; sauté for 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in sugar, pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Reduce heat to medium; cook 20 minutes, stirring frequently. Increase heat to medium-high, and sauté for 5 minutes or until onion is golden brown. Stir in wine, and cook for 1 minute. Add broth and thyme; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 2 hours.

Preheat broiler.

Place bread in a single layer on a baking sheet; broil 2 minutes or until toasted, turning after 1 minute.

Place 8 ovenproof bowls on a jelly-roll pan. Ladle 1 cup soup into each bowl. Divide bread evenly among bowls; top each serving with 1 cheese slice. Broil 3 minutes or until cheese begins to brown.


Happy New Year! Here’s a recipe you can make if your New Year’s resolution was to eat healthier. Who says you can’t grill during the winter? I made this after we got back from our holiday vacation. It was a great way to start 2009!



4 tilapia fillets, about 6 ounces each
2-1/2 tsp. olive oil
1 scallion, minced
1 lb. fresh spinach, stemmed and washed
2 cups cherry tomatoes

Prepare grill (high heat). Brush fish with 1 tsp. oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Grill fish about 2-3 minutes per side, until cooked through.

Meanwhile, heat 1-1/2 tsp. oil in a heavy nonstick skillet over high heat. Stir in scallions and sauté 2 minutes. Add spinach and sauté about 3 minutes, until wilted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer spinach to a platter and keep warm. Sauté tomatoes 2 minutes in same skillet over high heat, until they start to burst or their skins look wrinkly. Season with salt and pepper Serve fish on top of spinach on platter with tomatoes.

Bon Appetit!!


Lauren Kase
Hillman’s Helpings


Happy Almost Holidays! Last weekend my friend hosted a holiday party and I was tasked with bringing an appetizer. I found the recipe below on my favorite website, Cooking Light, but was a little nervous about making it for a crowd as I’d never tried it before. Well we were not disappointed – everyone loved it! If you make this be careful – it is a decent amount of garlic in it, so if you’re going to be around strangers, you might want to use a little less garlic than the recipe calls for.



1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated Asiago cheese, divided
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
1 (14-ounce) can hearts of palm, drained and chopped
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry
1 (8-ounce) block fat-free cream cheese, softened
1 (6.5-ounce) tub light garlic-and-herbs spreadable cheese (such as Alouette Light)


Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine mozzarella, 1/4 cup Asiago, sour cream, and remaining ingredients, stirring until well blended. Spoon spinach mixture into a 1 1/2-quart baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Asiago. Bake at 350° for 40 minutes or until bubbly and lightly browned. Serve warm with chips or veggies.


Lauren Kase
Hillman’s Helpings


I hope everyone had a nice and delicious Thanksgiving. I cooked this year for my family and one of my favorite new Thanksgiving dishes was a super healthy green bean recipe which I was able to make part of a few days prior to Thursday. This can be made any day, any season! My guests also really enjoyed my butternut bisque. That recipe can be found here.


Green Beans with Toasted Hazelnut Lemon Butter

Serves 6

Note: You can prepare the butter up to a week ahead and keep in the refrigerator.

1 1/2 tablespoons butter, softened
3 tablespoons finely chopped hazelnuts, toasted
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
2 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
8 cups water
1 1/2 pounds green beans, trimmed

Combine butter, hazelnuts, rind, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a small bowl; stir with a fork until well blended.

Bring 8 cups water and remaining 1 3/4 teaspoons salt to a boil in a large saucepan. Add green beans; cook 3 minutes. Drain. Return pan to medium heat. Add beans and butter mixture; cook 3 minutes or until the butter mixture melts. Toss gently to coat.


Lauren Kase
Hillman’s Helpings

We made these great waffles on New Years Day! It was a great way to start 2009!


Makes about 3 LARGE waffles

1.75 C all-purpose flour
1 T baking powder
1 T sugar
1/2 t salt
3 large eggs, well beaten
8 T butter
1.5 C milk

Mix the dry together; whisk the wet together. Make a well in the dry and add the wet. Gently whisk them together with a few switft strokes. (The batter should have a pebbled look, similar to a muffin batter.) Make on a waffle iron!

Top with berries, or incorporate chocolate chips into the batter!

My friend and I cooked dinner on Saturday night. We were looking for a warm and comforting dish. What could be better than meatballs!

From Joy of Cooking

1 lb ground beef
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumb
1 large egg, beaten
3 tablespoons dry red wine (optional)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons olive oil

Mix all ingredients up to the dried oregano with your hands.
Scoop out mixture in heaping tablespoons and form into 2-inch balls.
Dredge the meatballs in the flour.
Heat in a large skillet over medium heat the 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
Brown the meatballs in batches.
Place in baking pan and cook in a preheated 375 degree oven for 10 minutes.
If desired finish cooking in the sauce of your choice.