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Easy pantry dish – Clam Chowder

Captain's Log, Supplemental

I just got this incredibly easy (but not very good for you) clam chowder from Cheryl Wyatt, who knows all about easy cooking when she’s on deadline (she’s got three kids).

Clam Chowder

1 can Campbell's Chunky New England clam chowder
1 can Campbell's Select New England clam chowder
1 can New England clam chowder (just the regular red & white label soup can)
1 can cream of potato soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of celery soup
1 quart half and half
1 stick butter

Combine all ingredients in crock pot. Heat on high for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Camy here: I’d also add a can of minced clams and serve with some French bread from your local grocery store, toasted a few minutes in the oven.

Any easy-peasy recipes you can share with me? I’m always on the lookout for crockpot recipes or easy stuff I can throw together in half an hour. Because, really, who wants to cook when I could be writing? :)


  1. Here's a simple recipe for you that I made up for a church lunch. It can either be eaten as an entree over rice or easily taken to parties and potlucks.



    2 bags of frozen meatballs (original flavor...not "Italian")
    1 can of crushed pineapple
    1 cup of salsa
    2 tsps of Ginger (powder form)

    Cook the meatballs in a skillet with just a bit of oil and occasionally turning them til they are browned. While they are cooking, mix together the pineapple, salsa, and ginger. Put half of it in the bottom of a crockpot. Put the meatballs in the crockpot. Pour the rest of the pineapple/salsa mixture over the meatballs and stir GENTLY til all the balls have some sauce on them. Cook the meatballs on low or high heat til they are hot and bubbly then turn to warm until ready to serve.

    Eat them by themselves or they can be served over rice. If going the rice route, double the "sauce" so that you'll have plenty of it to flavor the rice.


    Happy Eatin'!

  2. Tex Mex Fried Rice

    I don't have an exact recipe. Its one of those kind where I add a little of this and a little of that. But basically its the same as Chinese fried rice but with Tex-Mex seasonings. I put enough good-fat oil in a black skillet to cover the bottom. Then I put a layer of cooked rice about an inch deep. Then I put a variety of things....Tex Mex spices (cumin, red pepper, chili powder, salt, etc), dollops of salsa, and then according to what I have on hand, I might add corn, black beans, or even sauteed veggies such as chopped up zucchini. Usually, though, its just the corn and beans. I then add another layer of rice and more spices.

    I let that cook over medium heat for a while til the bottom begins to brown, then I use a spatula to flip over different sections so that the "top" has a chance to brown.

    Then we eat it up! Its delish and packs a bit more nutritional punch than just spanish rice. It can also be made very easily with brown rice.

    If you like it spicier, you can pump up the heat with Tabasco sauce or dried red pepper flakes.

    Sometimes I'll serve refried beans and sour cream on top and eat it almost like a dip with tortilla chips.

    I had a big plate of it that way for breakfast one a.m. I also added some guacamole on top. It was YUM-O!

    Hope you like it.


  3. And yet another one.


    I sliced up the eggplant, dusted it with Italian seasoned bread crumbs mixed with whole wheat flour, salt, and pepper.

    I heated up just enough olive oil to cover a skillet (don't do more as the eggplant soaks it up and you'll get really oily eggplants) and then over medium heat, cooked the eggplant slices til they were lightly browned and soft to the touch. After each panful of eggplants, you'll have to add more olive oil.

    As the eggplants are cooking, cook up a potful of angel hair pasta and your favorite vegetarian spaghetti or marinara sauce. Mine was simply a large can of tomato paste, some water, italian herbs, salt and pepper, a bit of ketchup, and some water.

    When the pasta is cooked, drain and put in the bottom of a large, rectangular casserole dish. Put a thin layer of sauce over the pasta. Then layer your cooked eggplant slices. Dollop the rest of the sauce over each eggplant and grate cheese over the top of the dish. I used monterey but cheddar, gouda, or mozzarella (sp?) would all be fine choices.

    Your casserole is going to be warm so all you have to do is put it in a hot oven (mine was set at 350) until the cheese gets nice and melted.

    Then just serve it up! I made this entire dish in about 30 minutes plus garlic toast and sauteed broccoli.

    It looks fancy, but its really so easy and I love fact, I love it so much that I had it for breakfast this a.m.!

  4. And can you stand one more? This a favorite in my family.


    In a big pot, add however much chicken meat you want to cook. For my family, I usually do 3 boneless chicken breasts. If you want to use cheaper parts of the chicken, such as thighs, cook them and then debone before continuing with the recipe.

    Okay, so back to the first part. Put the chicken in a pot. Cover it with water. You should have enough water to make about 2 to 3 cups of broth. Add some salt, pepper, and chopped onion (anywhere from 1/4 to a cup according to how much you like onion). Boil til chicken is done.

    Remove chicken from broth and cut up into bite-sized and smaller pieces. Return to broth.

    Reduce heat to medium. Add to this 3 small cans of tomato paste (the 6 oz size) and a jar of peanut butter (I use smooth, all-natural but use whatever you want. If you use the kind with sugar and salt added, you'll not need to add additional salt and sweetening). If you are using all-natural p.b. add a few squirts of ketchup, a bit of stevia, or a little bit of honey. You want a bit of sweetener to cut the acidic taste of the tomato paste just like most folks do with spaghetti sauce.

    Stir often until pb is melted and its well blended. Lower heat---you do NOT want the pb to burn!

    Add a bit of ground red pepper to the stew, stir, and serve over rice.

    If you've used smooth peanut butter, offer chopped peanuts (or other nut of your choice, even sunflower seeds) to sprinkle on top before eating. The crunch adds a nice touch.

    I also like my peanut stew HOT so I add hot sauce on my serving before eating.

    The meal that my friend always served included these items---

    Peanut Stew
    White bread w/butter and jelly
    Fruit salad made of chopped bananas, oranges, and pineapple

    There is something about the combination of these foods that really works well together. I don't do sliced white bread but I do white yeast rolls. In most parts of Africa, white bread is considered fancy and is preferred over brown or whole wheat bread.

  5. I LOVE this idea, Camy! I used to cook the full course meals. Thought the family wouldn't think I loved them if I didn't. But you're right... the last thing I want to do is cook when I could be writing! I Just add "I Love You" and to the note taped outside my locked office door. And "look in the oven" if I bothered making something. Here are a few things I can make quick that they really like and still feel loved.

    Cheesy potatoes

    for a 9x13 pan
    2lb frozen shredded hash browns (not diced)
    1lb shredded cheddar
    1 cup diced ham, or crumbled cooked bacon
    1 med onion chopped (I like white)
    1/4 cup flour
    2 cups milk
    salt, pepper, chopped fresh or dried chives, garlic salt or any other fav potato seasoning

    1. brown onion in some butter till clear. Add flour, then whisk in milk. Add salt & pepper, seasonings.

    Spray a 9x13 pan, layer half the potatoes, half the ham and layer half the cheese.Pour half the onion white sauce over. Layer remaining potatoes, ham, then sauce, and top with remaining cheese. Sprinke with chives, paprika if you like. Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until you can smell it (always the truest test, I tell my kids).

    I often double this in a larger pan for a crowd or to get out of cooking the next day. Also keep a giant bowl of green salad in the fridge at all times.

    Another is Pizza Hoagies:
    open stadium style hoagie rolls. spread with pizza sauce, top with grated or sliced cheese (mozz, provolone, etc) then top with meat and toppings of your choice. Place on a foil lined baking sheet (a writer's good friend) and bake at 400 for 10-15 minutes. Kids will think you rock. Keep that big bowl of salad full too, that way you can tell yourself they're eating healthy.




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