Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Monday, December 7, 2009
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
I wasn't sure about using the microwave for caramel corn, but it is just as crisp and tasty as caramel corn toasted in the oven. And even though it calls for pretzels and cashews, I'm sure you could come up with several other "stir-in" combinations/substitutes and the results would still be delicious.
12 cups popped popcorn (about 1/2 cup popcorn kernels)
1 cup mini pretzels
1 cup salted cashews
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 tsp salt
1 cube unsalted butter (1/2 cup)
1/2 tsp baking soda
You'll also need a large paper grocery bag.
In a large (read: huge) bowl combine popcorn, pretzels and cashews. Set aside.
Melt butter in a large, microwavable container, 1 minute. Stir in brown sugar, corn syrup and salt. Microwave for 2 minutes. Remove and stir well. Microwave 2 minutes longer. Remove and stir in baking soda. It will foam up and rise. Carefully pour over popcorn mixture and stir until evenly coated.
Pour popcorn into a large paper bag and fold over the top of the bag. Place in the microwave and cook for 1-1/2 minutes. Remove bag and shake vigorously. Return to microwave for 1 minute longer. Remove from microwave and pour onto a large cookie sheet or parchment paper to cool. Break into pieces when cool.
Then begin Caramel Corn Anonymous meetings because you will be addicted.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
I probably still won't post much for a while. He came by c-section and I'm still healing. But soon, I will be back in the kitchen (minus the barefoot and pregnant reality). Until then...
Friday, August 21, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Here's what you'll need:
1 cup rice (cook according to package directions)
1 onion, chopped
1 lb ground beef
2-8 oz cans tomato sauce (or 1-15 oz can)
1 clove garlic, minced
coarse salt and fresh ground pepper (to taste)
1/2 tsp dried oregano
2 large zucchini squash
grated cheddar cheese (or cheese slices)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Start with 2 large zucchini squash and halve them lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds to make a "boat." Place on a large rimmed baking sheet.
Next, take one pound of ground beef, 1 chopped onion and 1 clove minced garlic. Brown them and drain off excess fat.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
They used crushed pineapple, applie pie filling, a yellow cake mix, butter and English walnuts. It was great! Last night I had a houseful again and a few different ingredients. Here's what I did.
I took one large can of mandarin oranges and partially drained them. I dumped them into a 9x13 baking dish. Then I dumped in 1 quart of homemade cherry pie filling, a large can of store-bought pie fillng would work just as well. I cut 1/2 cup of butter in to a yellow cake mix and dumped it on top of the cherries and oranges. I dumped a few slivered almonds on the top. (Now I see where is gets its name.) I placed it in a 375 degree oven for 30-35 minutes and it was delicious! I would post a picture but we were on vacation last week and the camera still has not been unpacked...that or I lost it. Anyway, trust me, it was yummy!
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
You'll need 2 packages pizza dough (or make your own favorite recipe), 1 medium tomato, seeded and diced, 1 medium zucchini, thinly sliced, 1 small onion, thinly sliced, 1 cup sliced mushrooms, 2 pressed garlic cloves, 1 cup grated mozzarella, 1 cup grated cheddar
1 tsp Italian seasoning and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roll out dough onto two 14" pans. Bake 5-6 minutes or until golden. Spread garlic over crusts.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
4 large potatoes, cooled, peeled and cubed
2/3 c butter
2/3 c flour
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp white pepper
6 cups whole milk
8 oz sour cream
1/4 cup green onions
10 slices bacon, cooked and crumbed
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
In a large saucepan heat butter, flour, salt and pepper over medium heat. Whisk until smooth and bubbly. Cook one minute. Gradually whisk in milk and add potato cubes. Bring to a low boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in sour cream. Garnish individual servings with onions, bacon and cheese.
Monday, June 8, 2009
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Here's what you'll need:
So first, heat up your broiler and set the rack 4 inches from heat. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. In a shallow dish or resealable plastic bag, combine vinegar, mustard, garlic, 1 tsp coarse salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper; add chicken and turn to coat. Marinate at room temperature for 10 minutes (or cover and refrigerate in marinade up to 24 hours).
Lift chicken from marinade and place on prepared sheet; broil (without turning) until opaque throughout, 4-6 minutes. Transfer chicken to a work surface; discard pan juices from baking sheet.
Looks good so far! Now, spread each piece of your baguette with some of those apricot preserves and then top 'em off with some chicken.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
2 large sweet potatoes
coarse sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
I put a baking sheet in the oven and preheated the oven to 425 degrees. I peeled the potatoes and rinsed them, then patted them dry with paper towels. Then I sliced them into 1/4-inch sticks. I put all the sticks in a bowl and drizzled them with olive oil and tossed to coat. Once the oven was preheated, I pulled out the baking sheet and dumped the potato sticks onto the sheet and seasoned them with salt and pepper. (I wanted to put a little cayenne on them but I was out.) I baked them for 20-25 minutes, until they were starting to blister and crisp, turning once or twice during the cooking time.
Mmmmm. I think I like these better than french fries and I'm going to guess they're healthier, too. I think my SIL added some fresh basil to hers and that was really delicious also.
Monday, May 11, 2009
1 8-oz pkg cream cheese, softened
1 can refried beans
1/2 lb leftover seasoned taco meat
1/2 - 1 cup salsa
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread cream cheese into the bottom of an 8x8 baking dish. Spread refried beans over the top of the cream cheese. Mix taco meat and salsa to taste, then spread over the beans. Top with grated cheese. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until heated through and sides are bubbly. Serve with your favorite corn chips.
It's perfect for a game night!
Saturday, May 9, 2009
1/2 c butter, softened
1/2 c shortening
1 c pack brown sugar
1/2 c granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 c flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 c oats
1 c semisweet chocolate chips
1 c mini marshmallows*
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter, shortening and sugars in a large mixing bowl. Ad eggs one at a time, mixing well after each egg. Beat in vanilla. Gradually add flour, baking soda and salt. Stir in oats, chocolate chips and marshmallows. Drop by heaping teaspoon onto a greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 11-13 minutes. Let cool 1-2minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool. (If cookies come out flat, chill dough for 30 minutes before baking.)
*I don't know if it's my altitude, but I've found that the marshmallows bake better if they've been allowed to dry out a few hours before adding them to the cookie dough.
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
(Thanks, Mom, for letting me use your computer to relay this very important message!)
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Southwest Chicken Eggrolls
1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts, marinated (below)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn, drained
1/2 cup fire roasted bell peppers, drained and chopped
5 oz frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed to drain
8 oz grated pepperjack cheese
20 soft flour tortillas (thin tortilllas work best)
oil for frying
Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Slice chicken into thin, 1-inch strips and add to hot pan with 1-2 Tbs of marinade. Cook until chicken is opaque. Off heat, stir in black beans, corn, peppers, spinach and cheese. Mix well, set aside.
In another large skillet heat 1/4 inch oil over medium high heat. Working in batches, heat 4-5 tortillas in the microwave for 15 seconds, this will make them easy to bend and wrap. Place 2 Tbs chicken filling in each tortilla, fold like a burrito (click here for egg roll wrapping pictures.) Using tongs, place seam side down in hot oil. (If the tortilla begins to bubble use tongs to hold it in place until the tortilla has shaped itself.) Cook until tortilla is golden on bottom, turn over the egg roll and cook on the other side until golden. Remove with tongs onto paper towel-lined plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas. Serve warm.
For the avocado ranch dipping sauce combine 1 medium, mashed avocado and 1 cup prepared ranch dip.
1/2 c soy sauce
1/2 c Worchestershire sauce
2 Tbs olive oil
1 1/2 Tbs brown sugar
1 Tbs lime juice
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp liquid smoke
1/4 tsp black pepper
pinch of onion powder, red pepper, and cumin
Combine all ingredients and add meat. Place in a gallon size resealable bag and refrigerate for 4-6 hours or overnight.
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Do you ever cook with Pesto? If so do you make your own or buy it? Where in the grocery store do you typically find it?
Well, Anonymous, I have to admit I don't cook often with pesto. I've had it on pizza (Thai Chicken) but that's about it. I have only made it once, using the following recipe from the March 2009 issue of Everyday Food. It was pretty good, but my kids didn't like it - it was a little hot - so I don't know how often it will be reappearing on our dinner table. The second recipe is one a friend sent me in a recipe exchange, although I've not yet tried it. I know you can purchase pesto, I'm guessing in the pasta aisle or possibly refrigerated near the cheeses. My readers will correct me if I'm wrong, so be sure to check back in the comments. Hope this helps!
Fettucine with parsely pesto and walnuts
coarse salt and ground pepper
3/4 pound fettucine
2 cups packed fresh Parsley
1/4 cups walnuts, plus more chopped for serving
1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
1 garlic clove
1 Tbs fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
5 ounces baby spinach
1. In a lrge pot of boiling salted water, cook past unil al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water; drain pasta, and return to pot.
2. In a food processor, puree parsley, walnuts, Parmesan, garlic, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons water until a paste forms. With machine running, add oil in a thin stream; process until very smooth, about 1 minutes. Season pesto with salt and pepper.
3. To pasta in pot, add pesto, 1/4 cup pasta water, and spinach; toss to combine. This with pasta water as needed. Serves sprinkled with Parmesan and walnuts.
Homemade Pesto - from the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup chopped walnuts and/or pinenuts
2 cups firmly packed fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
4 cloves garlic, peeled and quartered (or about 1 tbs of canned garlic)
1/4 teaspoon salt
black pepper (to taste)
In a food processor or blender combine oil, nuts, basil, cheese, garlic, and salt. Cover and process or blend until nearly smooth, stopping and scraping sides as necessary. Add pepper to taste. If you're not serving the pesto immediately, divide it into 3 portions. Place each potion in a small airtight container and chill for 1 to 2 days or freeze up to 3 months.
Note. For 6 side-dish servings, cook 6 ounces dried pasta, such as farfalle, linguine, etc, according to package instructions. Toss with one portion (1/4 cup) of the pesto.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Here's the recap:
Sausage Egg Rolls
1 lb pork sausage
6-8 green onions, sliced
3 ribs celery, coarsely chopped
1 can water chestnuts, coarsely chopped
1 carrot, grated
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tsp Accent
1 pkg egg roll wraps (about 20)
hot oil for frying
Brown sausage and drain. Combine sausage, onions, celery, water chestnuts, carrot and egg. Stir in Accent and salt. Heat oil to 375 degrees. Spoon 2 Tbs filling into egg roll wrap and roll, burrito style. Place 3-4 egg rolls, seam side down in oil. Cook until golden. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce.
*Accent is monosodium glutemate (MSG.) This ingredient is optional.
Friday, March 6, 2009
1 pounds red new potatoes, thinly sliced
2 pints Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
2 Tbs olive oil
coarse salt and pepper
1/4 c dried apricots, finely chopped
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 Tbs apricot jam
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.. On a large rimmed baking sheet toss together potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast for 15 minutes, tossing once.
Meanwhile, combine apricots, shallot and jam in a small bowl; season with salt and pepper.
Place pork on a work surface. Holding a chef's knife parallel to work surface, make a pocket by cutting lengthwise down center of tenderloin, stopping about 1/2 inch from other side (avoid cutting all the way through). Open, and stuff with apricot mixture. Spacing evenly, tie 3 to 4 pieces of kitchen twine around the pork to close the pocket. Season with salt and pepper.
Remove baking sheet from the oven when sprouts and potatoes have roasted 15 minutes. Toss and push to sides of baking sheet, then place pork in center. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted in thickest part of pork (avoiding stuffing) register 145 degrees, 25 to 30 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes before serving and slicing.
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Friday, February 20, 2009
(Also, I called them "Wedgies" because new foods are more likely to be eaten at my house if I give them an irreverent name...don't judge me...)
Spicy Potato Wedgies
4 large russet potatoes, scrubbed and cut in 8 wedges lengthwise
1 Tbs olive oil
1 tsp seasoned salt
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp red pepper
1/4 tsp black pepper
nonstick cooking spray
Place a rimmed cookie sheet in the oven and preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place potatoes in a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil, toss to coat. In a small dish combine seasoned salt, paprika, thyme, red and black peppers. Sprinkle half the mixture over potatoes, toss to coat. When oven has preheated, remove cookie sheet and spray with cooking spray. Arrange potatoes in a single layer on cookie sheet, cut side down. Sprinkle with remaining seasonings. Put pan in oven and bake 20 minutes. Remove pan from oven. Turn over each wedgie and increase heat to 450 degrees. Bake 15 more minutes or until desired crispness is achieved.
Smoky Fry Sauce
1/4 c mayonnaise
2 Tbs ketchup
2 drops liquid smoke (I used hickory - and I do mean drops people, a little liquid smoke goes a long way!)
Combine all ingredients in a dipping bowl. Serve with spicy wedgies.
Even with the uh...enticing(?) name, my kids still didn't eat them, which was okay, they probably would have been too hot for them. If you don't want that much spice on your taters reduce or omit the red pepper. Also, heating the pan with the oven starts the potatoes crisping from the moment they touch the pan. I like that instant joy thing.
(Still no camera...I think my husband hid it.)
Thursday, February 19, 2009
4-5 large potatoes, peeled and diced
4 carrots, sliced (I almost always use about 1/2 lb whole baby carrots)
3 ribs celery, sliced
2 lbs stew meat (I used 2 top sirloin steaks and cut them into bite-size pieces)
2 Tbs sugar
2 tsp salt
2 Tbs instant tapioca (you can grind it in a coffee grinder or with a mortar and pestle for a smoother texture)
1/2 tsp pepper
3 cups vegetable juice (I use low-sodium V-8)
Place onion in the bottom of the slow cooker. Add the remaining vegetables and stew meat. Combine sugar, salt, tapioca and pepper. Sprinkle over meat and veggies. Pour in vegetable juice. Stir gently taking care to leave onion layer on the bottom so they'll cook better. Cook on LOW 8-10 hours.
(I have pictures of this recipe but I'm unable to locate my camera...dang kids!)
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
In a large mixing bowl beat 6 large eggs and 2 cups whipping cream. (I actually almost always use 1/2 and 1/2. It serves the same purpose and costs about half as much. I'm thrifty like that.) I happened to have farm fresh eggs last night that my husband brought home from a coworker. Personally, I didn't notice much difference other than the photogeneticity - it's a word, really. Stir in 1/2 cup Italian style bread crumbs, 1/2 tsp salt, 2 Tbs orange juice concentrate (mix up the rest of the concentrate and serve with quiche,) and 1 cup finely torn spinach. If you don't have Italian style bread crumbs use regular bread crumbs and about 1 tsp Italian seasoning. Also, I am notorious for letting fresh veggies go bad in the fridge, so I always use 10 oz frozen spinach. Thaw it and squeeze it really well before adding to egg mixture.