By Jenny Stauffer

This month includes more of our family favorites! We are all busy right now, starting back to school, getting into a routine, and these recipes will get your family to dinner with little effort on your part. All of these are in our family’s regular rotation of meals.

Pork Tenderloin

This is a way my mom cooks tenderloin. It comes out very fork-tender and flavorful and my kids love tenderloin made this way. It smells delicious cooking and is a start to an easy home-cooked meal!

1 package pork tenderloin
1 pkg Lipton Onion Soup Mix

Place tenderloins on a roasting rack (sprayed with Pam) in a roasting pan. Add enough water to cover the pan and cover loosely with foil. Place pan in an oven warmed to 350. Let cook for about 3 hours. The last 45 minutes-an hour, uncover.

**Continue to check pan for water. The water will absorb and evaporate, and the bottom juices will burn without the water.

When the 3 hours is up, you can take the rack out of the pan, put the pan on the stovetop, and add stock (if needed) and flour to make a gravy from the drippings.

“Bourbon” Chicken

This comes from my childhood friend, Jaime. She and I share recipes often. The kids love this and Tom and I do, too! Don’t worry…there is no bourbon in this recipe!

1 pkg chicken breasts, cut into cubes
1 T olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed (can use jarred garlic)
¼ tsp powdered ginger
¼ cup apple juice
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 T ketchup
1 T cider vinegar
½ cup water
1/3 cup soy sauce

Heat oil in large skillet.  Add chicken and cook until lightly browned. Meanwhile (this is my shortcut), add remaining ingredients in a measuring cup and microwave until boiling, stirring occasionally until dissolved and mixed well. Add to chicken and bring to a hard boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Serve over hot rice.

Jaime’s “Best Spaghetti Sauce”

This is another recipe courtesy of Jaime. The original recipe calls for one large can of tomato soup. Well, in the recipe book that Jaime gave me, there is NO mention of this ingredient. I always made it without, until I was at my mom’s and wanted to fix this. When I called her to recount the recipe, we figured this mistake out! I did make it with the soup, and I must say (and she knows), my family loves it without the soup. Funny, but true! We truly love this sauce for a change of pace!

I pkg ground sirloin
½ onion, chopped small for little ones
1 green pepper, chopped
1 32 oz can tomatoes
1 12 oz can tomato paste
3 T Worcestershire sauce
¼ cup sugar
1 T salt
1 tsp chili powder

This tastes a little like chili. Brown meat in a large pot and drain. Add all other ingredients. Simmer over low heat for 2 hours, and adjust seasonings to taste. Stir occasionally. Serve over pasta.

Chicken Upside Down

This is one of my kids’ favorite meals. It makes a lot, and is good for leftovers.

2/3 cup butter
2 1/2 c cooked chicken, cubed
2/3 c flour
1 egg
3 c chicken broth
2/3 c milk
2 c milk
3 T oil
1 tsp salt
1 cup self-rising cornmeal
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp sugar
2 T lemon juice

Melt butter in pan over medium heat. Whisk in flour until well blended. Gradually add broth, then milk, seasonings, and lemon juice. Cook until sauce is thickened. Add chicken. Pour mixture into buttered 9x13x2 dish. The creamed chicken may be prepared ahead and frozen. When ready to serve, partially thaw and prepare cornbread topping. To prepare cornbread topping, mix together egg, 2/3 c milk, oil, cornmeal and sugar. Pour over chicken and bake 40 min. at 350 or until browned. Serves 8.