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Annie’s Homegrown

Annies Homegrown Creamy Deluxe packages Annie’s hired me to create recipes to appear on new packaging for Creamy Deluxe Macaroni Dinners. The packages debuted spring 2010.

ROTINI & WHITE CHEDDAR SAUCE
Creamy Cauliflower & Cheese Bake with Crunchy Cheddar Topping

Hands-on time: 25 minutes
Total time: 35 minutes
Makes 4 servings

2/3 c. crushed Annie’s Cheddar Bunnies Crackers
1 tbsp. olive oil, plus more for baking pan
1 pkg. Rotini & White Cheddar
4 c. small cauliflower florets
1 c. shredded Gruyere or Swiss cheese
1/2 c. sour cream
|2 tbsp. Annie’s Organic Dijon Mustard
1 to 2 tsp. prepared horseradish (optional)

1. PREHEAT oven to 400°F.

2. COMBINE Cheddar Bunnies and olive oil; set aside.

3. BOIL 10 c. water in large saucepan over high heat. Add rotini; cook 6 minutes. Add cauliflower; cook 4 minutes, until rotini and cauliflower are tender. Drain; return to pot.

4. STIR in cheese sauce, Gruyere, sour cream, mustard, and horseradish, if using. Add salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to oiled 8×8-in. baking pan. Top with Cheddar Bunnies mixture.

5. BAKE 10 minutes, until topping is browned.

SHELLS & REAL-AGED CHEDDAR SAUCE
Bacon Cheeseburger Stovetop Casserole

Hands-on time: 25 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes
Makes 6 servings

4 slices thick-cut bacon, cut crosswise into strips
1 lb. ground beef or turkey
1 small onion, diced
1 pkg. Shells & Real-Aged Cheddar
2 c. chopped tomatoes
1 c. shredded Cheddar cheese (optional)

1. BROWN bacon in large skillet over medium heat; use slotted spoon to transfer to plate. Drain fat (if using turkey, drain all but 2 tbsp.).

2. ADD meat and onion to skillet. Increase heat to high; cook until browned. Add 2 c. water; bring to boil. Add shells; reduce to simmer. Cover; cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until shells are tender.

3. STIR in cheese sauce, 3/4 of bacon, and tomatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Top with Cheddar, if using, and remaining bacon; serve.

ELBOWS & FOUR-CHEESE SAUCE
Italian Elbows with Turkey Sausage, Peppers & Onions

Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes
Makes 4 servings

1 pkg. Elbows & Four-Cheese
2 tbsp. olive oil
8 oz. Italian turkey sausage, casings removed
1/2 green bell pepper, cut into strips
1/2 red bell pepper, cut into strips
1/2 small red onion, cut into strips
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

1. BOIL 6 c. water in large saucepan over high heat. Add elbows; cook 8-10 minutes or until tender.

2. MEANWHILE, heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add sausage, peppers, and onion; cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sausage is brown and vegetables are tender.

3. DRAIN pasta; return to saucepan. Stir in cheese sauce and sausage mixture. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with Parmesan, if using; serve.

GLUTEN-FREE RICE PASTA & EXTRA CHEESY CHEDDAR SAUCE
Gluten-Free “Lasagna”

Hands-on time: 25 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
Makes 4 servings

1 pkg. Rice Pasta & Extra Cheesy Cheddar
1 tbsp. olive oil, plus more for baking pan
8 oz. ground beef or turkey (optional)
1 1/3 c. prepared marinara sauce
2/3 c. ricotta cheese
2 tbsp. chopped fresh oregano
1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese

1. PREHEAT oven to 400°F.

2. PREPARE Rice Pasta & Extra Cheesy Cheddar according to package directions.

3. MEANWHILE, if using meat, heat oil in medium skillet over medium heat. Add beef or turkey and brown. (If not using meat, stir olive oil into pasta.)

4. LAYER one third Rice Pasta & Extra Cheesy Cheddar in oiled 8×8-in. baking pan; top with half of meat, half of marinara sauce, half of ricotta, and half of oregano. Repeat. Finish with final third of Rice Pasta & Extra Cheesy Cheddar. Sprinkle with mozzarella.

5. BAKE 20 minutes, until heated through and cheese is melted.

ORGANIC ELBOWS & CREAMY MILD CHEDDAR SAUCE
Barbecue Chicken Pasta

Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes
Makes 4 servings

1 pkg. Organic Elbows & Creamy Mild Cheddar
1/2 rotisserie chicken, shredded (2 c.)
1/2 c. Annie’s Organic Sweet & Spicy BBQ Sauce
1/4 small red onion, thinly sliced
2 green onions, sliced
1/2 cup shredded smoked Gouda cheese (optional)
1/4 c. chopped fresh cilantro

1. BOIL 6 c. water in large saucepan over high heat. Add elbows and cook 8-10 minutes or until tender.

2. DRAIN pasta; return to saucepan. Stir in cheese sauce, chicken, Annie’s BBQ Sauce, red onion, and green onions. Add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with Gouda, if using, and cilantro; serve.

WHOLE WHEAT SHELLS & EXTRA CHEESY CHEDDAR SAUCE
Tex-Mex Stuffed Peppers

Hands-on time: 25 minutes
Total time: 65 minutes
Makes 6 servings

1 pkg. Whole Wheat Shells & Extra Cheesy Cheddar
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 lb. ground turkey
1 1/2 c. prepared salsa
1 c. corn kernels
1/2 c. coarsely crushed corn tortilla chips
6 large red bell peppers, tops removed, seeded
3/4 c. shredded Mexican blend cheese

1. PREHEAT oven to 400°F.

2. BOIL 8 c. water in large saucepan over high heat. Add shells; cook 10 minutes or until tender.

3. MEANWHILE, heat olive oil in medium skillet over medium heat. Add turkey and brown.

4. DRAIN shells; return to pot. Stir in cheese sauce, turkey, salsa, corn, and tortilla chips. Add salt and pepper to taste; stuff mixture into peppers. Arrange peppers in 9×13-in. baking pan.

5. BAKE 30 minutes, until peppers are tender and filling is heated through. Sprinkle with Mexican cheese; bake 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.