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Posts from December 2013

The Top 25 Showbiz Stories of 2013

These are the top 25 showbiz storiesof 2013. ~Dennis

1.  Paul Walker and Cory Monteith died tragically and far too young

2.  Mindy McCready suicided in the same place her boyfriend did.

3.  Manti Te'o was tricked into being in a relationship with someone he thought was a girl.

4.  The Jason Collins story

5.  The Year in Coming Out . . . including Jodie Foster, Michelle Rodriguez, and Clive Davis

6.  Alec Baldwin got a show on MSNBC, then lost it.

7.  Paula Deen admitted to using a very bad word.

8.  New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez charged with murder.

9.  Lance Armstrong smugly admitted he's been doping.

10.  Michael Douglas's Cancer

 11.  They finally locked up Amanda Bynes

 12.  Lindsay Lohan failed to escape 2013 scandal-free

 13.  Reese Witherspoon was arrested for interfering with her husband's DUI arrest

14.  Jimmy Fallon was annointed as Jay Leno's "Tonight Show" successor

15.  Barbara Walters announced her retirement

16.  The Year in TV and Movies . . . including Ben Affleck being chosen as the new Batman

17.  The Jonas Brothers finally broke up

18.  The Stone Temple Pilots fired Scott Weiland and replaced him with Chester Bennington

19.  Craig Morgan jumped off his tour bus to administer CPR at a freeway accident

20.  Jake Owen got into a nasty go kart accident and lost the tip of his finger

21.  The Year in Sexy and Unsexy . . . including Sydney Leathers, Tan Mom, and Farrah Abraham

22.  The Year in oops! moments . . . including Jennifer LawrenceAl Roker, and John Cena

23.  Justin Bieber getting into trouble

24.  Kanye Kardashian Kaos . . . including the birth of North West, Kim & Kanye's "Bound 2" video, and its hilarious parody

25.  Miley Cyrus twerked . . . and the world changed forever

 

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Sirloin Strips with Rice

Another fast weeknight meal, handled in about thirty minutes!

1-1/2 pounds beef top sirloin steak, cut into thin strips
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 tsp olive oil, divided
2 medium onions, one red and one white, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 can (14-1/2 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1/2 cup reduced-sodium beef broth
1/3 cup dry red wine (OR addt'l beef broth)
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp each dried basil and dried thyme
3 cups hot cooked rice

Sprinkle beef strips with salt and pepper.  In a large skillet coated with cooking spray, brown beef in 1 tsp oil.  Remove and keep warm.

In the same skillet, saute onions and garlic in remaining oil until tender.  Stir in the tomatoes, broth, wine (or addt'l broth), bay leaf, basil and thyme.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.

Return beef to the pan; cook for 2-4 minutes or until tender and mixture is heated through.  Discard bay leaf.  Serve over rice.

Image: Wikimedia Commons
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Crab Patties

A quick and easy meal after a long day of holiday fun!  (And it's easily doubled if your fam is "starving"!)

1 egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
2 tbsp finely chopped onion
1-1/2 tsp (each) of chopped sweet red pepper, prepared horseradish, Dijon mustard
1/8 tsp (each) salt and cayenne pepper
1/4 cup mayonnaise, divided
6 ounces imitation crabmeat, chopped
1 tbsp butter
2 English muffins, split and toasted
4 slices tomato
1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese

In a large bowl, combine the egg, bread crumbs, onion, red pepper, horseradish, mustard, salt and cayenne pepper; stir in 2 tbsp mayonnaise.  Add crab and mix well.  Shape into four patties.  In a large skillet, cook patties in butter over medium heat for 3-4 minutes on each side or until golden brown.

Place the English muffins on a baking sheet (remember to toast them lightly first!).  Spread with the remaining mayonnaise.  Top with tomato, crab pattoes and cheese.  Broil 4-in. from the heat for 2 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Image: Wikimedia Commons


 
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Stuffed Pepper Soup

Tastes just like it sounds...a stuffed pepper in soup form!

1 pound lean ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
3 cups water
4 beef bouillon cubes
1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 cup white rice
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp paprika
1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 sweet red bell pepper, seeded and diced

In a large Dutch oven, cook ground beef with onion, until the meat is brown and onion is tender; drain.  Add water, bouillon cubes, tomatoes, rice and seasonings.  Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer covered for one hour.

Add peppers; cook uncovered for 10-15 minutes until peppers are tender.

Image: Wikimedia Commons
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Tortellini Primavera

Your family might not even notice this is a Meat-Free Monday dish; it is so chock-full of goodness!

1 package (19 oz) frozen cheese tortellini
1/2 pound sliced fresh mushrooms
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp butter
2/3 cup milk
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, cubed
1 package (10 oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 large tomato, chopped
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Cook tortellini according to package directions.  In a large skillet, saute the mushrooms, onion and garlic in butter until tender.  Stir in milk; heat through.  Stir in the cream cheese until blended.  Add spinach and Italian seaoning; heat through.

Drain tortellini; toss with sauce and tomato.  Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Image: Wikimedia Commons
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PB&J Pie

Kids love this pie!  And it is so easy to put together...

1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1 chocolate crumb crust (9 inches)
1/2 cup strawberry preserves
2 cups whipped topping

In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and peanut butter until smooth.  Spoon into crust.  Top with strawberry preserves first and then the whipped topping.  Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight before serving.

Image: Wikimedia Commons
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Pizza Burgers

Surprise!  The cheese is IN the burger!!

1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp beef bouillon granules
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
1 pound ground beef
4 slices part-skim mozzarella cheese
4 hamburger buns, split
6 tbsp pizza sauce, warmed
8 green pepper rings

In a small bowl, combine the garlic, bouillon, Italian seasoning and salt.  Crumble beef over mixture; mix well.  Shape into 8 thin patties.  Place a slice of cheese on a patty; top with another patty and press edges to seal.

Pan fry over medium heat for 6-8 minutes on each side or until meat is no longer pink.  Serve on buns with pizza sauce and green pepper rings.

Image: Wikimedia Commons
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Cashew Chicken Pasta Salad

Prepare this fun salad for a potluck...you won't be bringing home leftovers, that's for sure!

1 package (16 oz) spiral pasta
4 cups cubed cooked chicken
1 can (20 oz) pineapple tidbits, drained
1-1/2 cups sliced celery
3/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1 cup seedless red grapes, halved
1 cup seedless green grapes, halved
1 package (6 oz) dried cranberries
1 cup ranch salad dressing
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 cups salted cashews

Cook pasta according to package directions.  In a large bowl, combine chicken, pineapple, celery, onions, grapes and cranberries.  Drain the pasta and rinse it in cold water.  Stir pasta into chicken mixture.

In a small bowl, whisk ranch dressing and mayonnaise together.  Pour over salad and toss to coat.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.  Just before serving, stir in cashews.

Image: Wikimedia Commons
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Meatball Tortellini Soup

Premade tortellini and frozen meatballs help this soup become a fast weeknight favorite!

1 can (14-1/2 oz) reduced sodium beef broth
12 frozen fully cooked Italian meatballs (each meatball should be around 1/2 oz)
3/4 cup fresh baby spinach
3/4 cup stewed tomatoes
1 can (11 oz) Mexicorn, drained
3/4 cup frozen cheese tortellini (about 20)
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large saucepan, bring the broth to a boil.  Add the meatballs.  Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes.

Add the spinach, tomatoes and corn; cover and simmer for 5 minutes.  Add the tortellini, salt and pepper; cover and simmer for 3 minutes or until the tortellini is tender.

Image: Wikimedia Commons
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Baked Catfish

All the flavor with less calories than fried, this catfish is one delicious dish!  Round out the meal with your fav steamed veggies.

2 tbsp minced fresh parsley
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp each dried thyme, dried oregano, dried basil and pepper
4 catfish fillets (6 oz each)
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp butter, melted
1 garlic clove, minced

Combine seasonings; sprinkle over fillets on both sides.  Place in a greased baking dish.  Combine the lemon juice, butter and garlic; drizzle over fillets.

Bake uncovered at 350 for 15-20 minutes or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.

Image: Wikimedia Commons
 
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