Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Makes 4 servings
2 t olive oil
2 c sliced mushrooms
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 c skim milk
1/3 c nonfat cottage cheese
3 T basil leaves
3 T parsley leaves
2 T all purpose flour
1 t dried oregano
1/4 grated Parmesan cheese
2 T grated Asiago cheese
4 cups fusilli or penne pasta (we used whole wheat and that added a little more flavor)
1/2 lb. green beans, trimmed and cut into 2 inch pieces
1. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil. Add the mushrooms and garlic; cook, stirring as needed, until the mushrooms release their liquid, 4-5 minutes.
2. In a blender or food processor, puree the milk, cottage cheese, basil, parsley, flour and oregano. Add to the mushroom mixture; stir in the Parmesana nd the Asiago cheeses and cook, stirring as needed, until heated through, about 2 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions, adding the green beans during the last 4 minutes of cooking time. Drain and transfer to a large bowl. Immediately top with the mushroom sauce; toss to coat.
Anyway, it was really cold and great to come home to a warm meal already cooking. Here it is:
Barbecued Beef (from my All Recipes cookbook)
1 1/2 c ketchup
1/4 c packed brown sugar
1/4 c red wine vinegar
2 T prepared mustard (Dijon or regular)
2 T Worcestershire sauce
1 t liquid smoke flavoring
1/2 t salt
1/4 t ground black pepper
1/4 t garlic powder
1 (4 pound) boneless chuck roast, cut in half, fat trimmed
1. In a slow cooker, combine everything but the roast. Stir well.
2. Place chuck roast halves in slow cooker. Turn meat to oat with ketchup mixture. Cover and cook on high for 1 hour. Reduce heat to low and cook 7 to 8 hours.
3. Remove roast, shred with two forks, and return to slow cooker. Sitr meat to evenly coat with sauce. Continue cooking on low approximately one hour.
Yield: 12 servings
You can put everything in the crockpot the night before, then stick it on high right when you wake up. Before you leave (about an hour for me), put it back on low.
Serve on toasted sandwich buns with extra sauce. There will be enough sauce that you could use it as a dipping sauce if you like. We had it on toasted rosemary ciabatta buns which was soooo good!
**A good way to skim more fat: put the sauce in a container in the freezer while you shred the beef. The grease will harden on top and then you can skim off the extra grease/fat at the top. Then return the sauce to the slow cooker with the shredded beef to cook for the remaining hour.
Edit: I used the leftover beef for a beef stew, and it was really really good in that. It added a slightly sweet element I don't normally have in beef stew. Definitely do this with leftovers!
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
These are the addictive Andes mint cookies. I got them from the Sister's Cafe blog, and then I melted some semisweet chocolate squares (with a touch of veg oil to make it easier to drizzle) to put on top. YUM! I might have had a few already today...
3 large granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 8 wedges each (we used some other apple and cut them into slightly thinner slices--I'd say the apple doesn't matter, but I would cut them thinner)
½ c milk
2 T oil
½ t vanilla
1 c flour
5 T powdered sugar
¾ t baking powder
¼ t salt
3 T butter or margarine
¼ t cinnamon
Powdered sugar and/or maple syrup for serving
1. Place rack in center of oven and preheat to 425.
2. In a medium bowl, beat milk, egg, oil, and vanilla until well blended. Stir in flour, 3 T powdered sugar, baking powder, and salt. Stir until blended.
3. In a 10”, oven proof, non-stick skillet, melt butter over a medium heat. Add apples, 2 T powdered sugar, and cinnamon. Cook, turning often, for 5-7 minutes until apple slices are browned but still hold their shape.
4. Spread slices in an even layer in skillet, stir batter, and pour over hot apples.
5. Place skillet in oven and bake 13-15 minutes, until the batter is cooked and puffs up around the edge of the pan.
6. Remove and loosen the edges from the pan. Place a serving platter over the skillet and flip the pancake onto the serving platter. Garnish with powdered sugar or maple syrup.
Friday, December 5, 2008
After my family left, we both needed more of this stuff! He wasn't shy and just sat down with the bowl and a spoon...hey, might as well! You've got to try this stuff. I had extra filling, so I took it to school to make mini ones for my kids and it is definitely teenager approved, also.
Monday, December 1, 2008
Libby’s Pumpkin Pie
¾ c granulated sugar
1 t ground cinnamon
½ t salt
½ t ground ginger
¼ t ground cloves
2 large eggs
1 can (15 oz) pure pumpkin
1 can (12 oz) Evaporated milk
1 pie shell (homemade or store bought)
Mix sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger, and cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk.
Pour into pie shell.
Bake in preheated 425 F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 F; bake for 40-50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate.
From Joy of Cooking
Yield: 24 2-inch rolls
1 c milk
1 T sugar
2 T butter
¾ t salt
1 package active dry yeast
2 T 105-115 F water
2 2/3 c all-purpose flour, sifted
Add sugar, butter, and salt and stir until dissolved.
Sprinkle yeast over water.
Add the milk mixture when the yeast/water has cooled to lukewarm.
Beat in egg.
Stir in part of the flour; knead in the rest. Use only enough flour to form a dough that can be handled easily. Place in a greased bowl. Brush the top with melted butter.
Cover and let dough rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk.
Punch down the dough. Now, fill greased muffin tins about one-third with 3 small balls (as sketched in Joy of Cooking, page 611).
Brush the tops with melted butter.
Let rise covered in a warm place until about doubled in bulk.
Bake in a preheated 425 F oven 15-18 minutes. Remove at once from pans.
For this lunch, we started with homemade chicken stock (which was hilarious to watch the kids figure out how to cut a chicken and boil the necks and backs of a chicken!) to make chicken noodle soup. We were not brave enough (nor had enough time!) to make our own noodles, but our chicken noodle soup was great. From making the stock, we had some extra veggies, so we decided to puree them and then add them to the soup to thicken it up and add some extra veggies without any chunks. I really liked that idea--more flavor, more veggies, and nobody knows they're eating more veggies.
This french bread is awesome. It is a lot like Panera; kind of a crunch to the outside, which is mainly because of the egg wash--don't skip that step. Most of the people that had it first asked if we ordered it from Panera, then asked for the recipe, which is extremely easy! Then, you could make sandwiches, serve it on the side (great bread for sopping up extra broth in, say, chicken noodle soup???), or make an awesome French toast out of it!
The menu of our lunch was: Old Fashioned Chicken Noodle Soup, french bread, and apple crisp. Add a soda to that and the whole meal was only $6 to order--not bad, huh?:) I was proud of my kids again!
Yield: 30 servings
5 2/3 c all purpose flour
2 ½ packages active dry yeast
2 t salt
2 c warm water (110 F)
1 T cornmeal
1 egg white
1 T water
1 T butter
1 t sugar
1. In a small bowl, combine yeast, 1 c of the warm water, and sugar. Let sit until instructed to use.
2. In a large bowl, combine 2 c flour and salt. Stir in the other 1 c warm water. Combine.
3. Add yeast mixture to this and beat until well blended using a stand mixer with a dough attachment. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can.
4. On a lightly floured surface, knead in enough flour to make a stiff dough that is smooth and elastic. Knead for about 8-10 minutes total. Shape into a ball. Place dough in a greased bowl, and turn once. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled.
5. Punch dough down and divide in half. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Cover, and let rest for 10 minutes. Roll each half into a large rectangle. Roll up, starting from a long side. Moisten edge with water and seal. Taper ends.
6. Grease a large baking sheet. Sprinkle with cornmeal. Place loaves, seam side down, on the prepared baking sheet. Lightly beat the egg white with 1 T water and brush on. With a very sharp knife, make 3 or 4 diagonal cuts about ¼ inch deep across top of each loaf. Cover with a damp cloth. Let rise until nearly doubled, 35 to 40 minutes.
7. Bake in a preheated oven 375 F for 20 minutes. Brush again with egg white mixture. Bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until bread tests done. If necessary, cover loosely with foil to prevent over browning. Remove from baking sheet and cool on wire rack.
Adapted from http://www.allrecipes.com/
Yield: 12 (1/2 c) servings
6 c sliced apples, peeled if desired
1 T cinnamon
1 T water
1 t lemon juice
1 c rolled oats
¾ c all purpose flour
¾ c firmly packed brown sugar
½ c margarine or butter, softened
1 t nutmeg
½ t ground cloves
1. Heat oven to 375 F. Place fruit in ungreased 2-quart casserole. Sprinkle with cinnamon, water, and lemon juice.
2. In large bowl, combine all topping ingredients. With pastry blender or fork, mix until crumbly. Sprinkle evenly over fruit.
3. Bake at 375 F for 25 to 35 minutes or until fruit is tender and topping is golden brown.
Adapted from Pillsbury
Yield: 64 oz.
2 lb. chicken backs, necks, and/or wings
2 quarts (8 cups) water
2 small onions, quartered
1 c coarsely chopped celery with leaves
½ c sliced carrots
2 t chopped fresh parsley
1 t salt
¼ t pepper
1 bay leaf
½ t salt
1. In Dutch oven, combine chicken and water. Bring to a boil. Skim and discard residue that rises to surface. Reduce heat; partially cover and simmer 30 minutes.
2. Add all remaining ingredients except ½ t salt; partially cover and simmer an additional 4 hours.
3. Remove bones from broth. Cool slightly. Remove meat from bones; refrigerate or freeze for a later use.
4. Strain broth; stir in ½ t salt. Cool uncovered in refrigerator. Skim fat from broth; discard. Cover; store in refrigerator up to 3 days or freeze up to 6 months.
Yield: 5 (1 ½ c) servings
1 ½ c cubed cooked chicken
1 c sliced carrots
½ c chopped celery
½ c chopped onion
1 parsnip, peeled, cubed (3/4 c)
2 t chopped fresh parsley
1 t chopped fresh dill
58 oz. chicken broth
2 c uncooked wide egg noodles
1. In Dutch oven or large saucepan, combine all ingredients except noodles; mix well. Cook over medium heat 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.
2. Add egg noodles; cook 15 minutes or until of desired doneness.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Fall food sale choices were finally made; we will be making that pumpkin bread, the apple spice bars, pumpkin pie, lemon poppyseed bread, cinnamon sugar biscotti, and cloverleaf yeast rolls. We will put the order forms out tomorrow and start baking up a storm in a couple of weeks! Hopefully we have a lot of orders from the teachers in the building--we wrote on the order form that people who order can "fool your family members into thinking you made it yourself!" If that's not a selling point, I don't know what would be !! :)
Today's menu and recipes:
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 (4 pound) boneless pork loin roast
Combine spices and rub over pork loin.
Randomly cut 20 deep slits, 1 in. wide, on inside surface of roast. Fill slits with some of spice mixture. Wrap in foil. Marinate in refrigerator for at least 6 hours (overnight is fine).
After marinating, remove foil and place pork in a shallow baking pan. Bake, uncovered, at 450 for ten minutes. Then lower oven temperature to 275 to cook for 1 ½ to 2 hours longer. Check internal temperature to determine doneness.
(I looked at a whole bunch of different recipes, from allrecipes to Joy of Cooking, to decide on the following recipe. It's mostly from Joy of Cooking. I would change it for next time by using about 3/4 of the liquid we used this time.)
8 slices white bread, torn into small pieces
3 apples, peeled and cut fine
½ t rubbed sage
¾ t salt
1 dash pepper
½ c margarine
1/2 medium onion, chopped fine
½ c milk
1 egg, beaten
1. Mix bread, apples, sage, salt, and pepper in a bowl and set aside.
2. Melt margarine over stovetop and add chopped onion. Simmer a few minutes.
3. Remove from stove and add milk and egg.
4. Pour this mixture over dry ingredients and mix well.Bake in greased casserole pan at 375 degrees for 30-45 minutes.
from Good Things Catered; originally from Joy of Cooking; funny because I found it in Joy of Cooking and figured I'd browse the internet quickly to see if there were any better ones, and saw it again, and knew it must be good! It is the best pumpkin bread I've ever eaten and I am a pumpkin lover!
We took the allspice out of one batch and left it in the other; they tasted pretty similar; if you don't have it you don't have to go out and buy it for this. It is tasty both ways!
½ c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/3 c. milk
½ tsp vanilla
6 Tbsp butter, at room temp
1 c. granulated sugar
1/3 c. packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 c. pumpkin puree
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Have all ingredients at room temp and prepare 9x5 loaf pan.
Whisk together flour, soda, powder, salt and spices thoroughly.
In another bowl combine milk and vanilla.
In large bowl of mixer beat butter until creamy (about 30 sec).
Gradually add sugars and beat on high speed until lightened in texture (3-4 min).
Beat in eggs one at a time.
Add pumpkin puree on low speed until just blended.
Add flour mixture in 3 parts alternating with the milk mixture in 2 parts beating on low or stirring with spatula until just combined.
Scrape batter into pan and spread evenly.
Bake about 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Friday, October 31, 2008
Here are a few recipes that I have made lately and wanted to share: (easy easy easy!)
8 oz fresh cheese ravioli
2 T extra virgin olive oil
Dry Italian Bread crumbs
Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
Preheat oven to 400 F. Lightly spray a baking sheet. Brush ravioli with olive oil. Sprinkle lightly with bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Place on baking sheet and bake in preheated oven until golden, about 7-9 minutes. Serve hot with chilled red sauce as an appetizer, or with heated sauce as a meal.
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup Ranch dressing
3/4 cup pepper sauce, such as Franks® Red Hot®
1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1 bunch celery, cleaned and cut into 4 inch pieces
1 (8 ounce) box chicken-flavored crackers
Heat chicken and hot sauce in a skillet over medium heat, until heated through. Stir in cream cheese and ranch dressing. Cook, stirring until well blended and warm. Mix in half of the shredded cheese, and transfer the mixture to a slow cooker. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top, cover, and cook on Low setting until hot and bubbly. Serve with celery sticks and crackers.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
This cake could be something simple and semi-impressive to bring to a small get together or something for work, but it probably won't make it there if you're like us.
The "healthy" part of it is:
1 box yellow cake mix
1 regular sized can pure pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling; not the giant fat can)
Mix together and bake according to package directions. Make it in your Bundt pan to make it a little more special than a regular cake!
Then, Norris wanted me to ice it. I didn't want to make a heavy cream cheese icing. I wanted to make some sort of a glaze. I was burning my Henri Bendel Bitter Orange candle, and it made me think of orange icing!
1 c powdered sugar
3 T orange juice
1 T melted butter
Drizzle it over the top! I did it while it was still warm, so it pretty much soaked into the cake, which I actually like. You could wait until the cake is cooled and the icing is set before doing it and it would probably sit on top of the cake more.
We just ate way too much of this cake and it was so good! You could make it without the icing for a "diet" dessert (hey, it's better than the real cake recipe, right?!?):)
We've been married for a whopping 4 months today. I really can't believe how fast those four months have gone....and am sure I will be saying the same thing about 50 years from now!
Monday, October 27, 2008
We had Farmer's casserole, fruit kebabs with dip, and those ninety minute cinnamon rolls from the other day. The best part about this whole meal is that everything could be made the night before or everything could be made the morning of, in not too much time. We only started a couple hours before they arrived, and it was all done (including cinnamon rolls!)
Nonstick cooking spray
6 c frozen shredded hash brown potatoes (not with peppers or onions)
1 ½ c shredded Monterey Jack cheese or shredded cheddar cheese
2 c diced cooked ham or bacon (your choice)
8 beaten eggs
3 c milk
¼ t salt
¼ t pepper
1. Coat a 3-qt. baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Arrange potatoes evenly in the bottom of the dish. Sprinkle with cheese and ham.
2. In a bowl combine eggs, milk, salt, and pepper. Pour egg mixture over potato mixture.
3. Bake, uncovered in a 350 oven 40-45 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
½ of a watermelon or any melon of your choice (I would choose watermelon or cantaloupe, depending on which is cheaper)
Grapes (1 bag)
Strawberries (if decent price)- 1 large container
Pineapple (if decent price)
20 wooden party skewers (can find in baking supply aisle)
Basically, just choose three to four of the above fruits. Three is probably best.
Cut fruit into ¼ to ½ inch squares, depending on size of fruit. Thread 3-4 different fruit cubes on to each skewer. Cover and refrigerate.
Serve chilled fruit kebabs with chilled fruit dip.
2 c non fat vanilla yogurt
1 c brown sugar
1 t vanilla or almond extract
Combine until well blended. Refrigerate.
Can serve fruit skewers in a bowl lined with lettuce leaves with dip on the side. Can also serve fruit skewers lying down on a tray. (or any way you want)
Thursday, October 23, 2008
On the planning front, I fortunately had this week pretty well planned ahead so we have actually been eating good dinners each night and I've been getting exercise in while getting other things done. On Tuesday I made some chicken tacos--they were so good--I got chipotle taco seasoning this time and that made a huge difference; we liked the flavor a whole lot more.
Last night I made beef stroganoff, another recipe that I hadn't made before because I've never been a big "meat and potatoes" eater, but in an effort to fill Norris up with good warm food, I tried this one out, and it was actually good. It was pretty easy to make too, and was a good meal that I could get prepped, then go to the gym, then come home and finish it off within about 25 minutes of getting home from the gym. I served it over some garlicky Yukon gold mashed potatoes (best potatoes for mashing!) and a salad. Tonight is my night to help at the cooking school, so I won't get home until around 9:30 or so, yuck. It's poultry night with chef Damien, so hopefully I'll learn something good and different!
Tomorrow night we are going to a coworker's for a bbq, then to the high school football game. I'm pretty excited because my school is playing the school I used to work at! Saturday we are headed to the KSU/OU game (hmm...might not be pretty!) and then to Joey's birthday party/costume party in Topeka! I'm not sure that we'll be dressing up though. Sunday, we are having brunch (that my mom and I are making) with my sister, her bf, his parents, and my parents. Big day! We are making those awesome homemade cinnamon rolls, fruit kebabs with fruit dip, and a farmer's casserole (eggs and meat type dish). It's going to be a full fun weekend!
I also already voted this week by mail. It was crazy to finally see the presidential candidates' names on a ballot--it seemed like this was never going to get here. Glad to have voted!
I am stressing a little bit just thinking about next week. We are going for a lot more rounds of cinnamon rolls as my CC class is taking preorders for cinnamon rolls for teachers to buy before our Wed. morning PLC meeting (starts at 7:10!) This means I will have to get here around 6:15 to get the rolls in the oven and iced before they pick them up! Then we will sell them to students in the hallway before school. THEN on Thursday, we are serving (so far) 46 people, mostly teachers a great lunch of paninis on homemade focaccia, barbecue kettle chips, and S'more snack cake. We will be prepping that next week. It will be a wild week and Friday is Halloween, so we'll be ready for a little bit of a relaxing day!
Anyway, enjoy your weekend! I am going to post the S'more snack cake recipe because it's pretty darn good! We had a practice meal that the kids served each other to make sure the recipes they picked were good. I already posted the focaccia, and you can buy the kettle chips at the store, obviously:) I am also posting the sweet and sour pork with vegetables recipe that we are finishing cooking and eating today in PC class. It is another yummy one! I will post the farmer's casserole recipe on Monday after we make it Sunday.
Prep Time: 25 minutes (ready in 2 hrs. 15 minutes)
Yield: 16 servings
1 c all-purpose flour
1 ½ c graham cracker crumbs (24 squares)
1 t baking powder
½ t baking soda
½ t salt
1 c firmly packed brown sugar
½ c shortening
1 c milk
1 c mini semisweet chocolate chips
1 (7-oz) jar (1 ½ c) marshmallow crème
1. Heat oven to 350 F. Grease and flour 13x9 inch pan. In medium bowl, combine flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking powder, baking soda and salt; mix well.
2. In large bowl, combine brown sugar, shortening, and eggs; beat until well blended. Add dry ingredients and milk; beat at low speed until well blended. Beat 1 minute at medium speed. Stir in 2/3 c of the chocolate chips. Spoon and spread batter evenly into greased and floured pan.
3. Bake at 350 F for 25-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 15 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, in small saucepan, melt remaining 1/3 c chocolate chips over low heat. Spoon teaspoonfuls of marshmallow crème onto top of warm cake; carefully spread with knife dipped in hot water. Drizzle with melted chocolate; swirl chocolate through marshmallow crème to marble. Cool 1 hour or until completely cooled
1 green pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
½ red pepper, cut into thin strips
½ c sliced bamboo shoots
½ c sliced water chestnuts
1 c pineapple chunks
Combine marinade ingredients; pour over pork and marinate meat 30 minutes or longer. (May be marinated overnight in the refrigerator if desired.)
Combine all sauce ingredients by first dissolving cornstarch in water. Then add remaining ingredients. Stir. Cook over medium heat until sauce comes to a boil and is thickened. (Or, microwave until sauce thickens, stirring occasionally). Set aside.
Put rice on to cook according to package directions.
Combine egg and cornstarch. Add pork cubes, drained, to the batter and stir to coat the pieces. (Note: Batter should be very thick; if not, sprinkle in a little more cornstarch).
Heat three inches of oil in deep fat fryer, deep skillet, or wok until 375 degrees F. Deep fry meat, a few pieces at a time, until golden and cooked on the interior. (You may need to cut into a sample piece to check to see if it is done). Transfer meat to paper towels to drain. Repeat process with remaining pork until it is all cooked. Drain all oil from wok except 2 T.
Stir fry vegetable mixture by first stir frying carrot for 1-2 minutes. Then add onion, green, and red peppers. Stir fry for 1-2 minutes until tender crisp. Add bamboo shoots and water chestnuts; stir fry a minute or two until very hot.
Add pineapple and sauce to the work. Toss to combine and to coat ingredients. Return cooked pork to the wok, stirring to coat with sauce. Serve with rice if desired.
Makes 4-6 servings.
Cook’s Tips: Start this recipe the day before if you like to simplify things. Marinate the pork and refrigerate it; it will hold nicely 24 hours. To speed things up a bit, use the microwave to cook the sauce. It may be refrigerated for 24 hours also. Often times I cook the vegetables in the microwave so they are ready to use the minute the meat is cooked.
All you need to do before serving is dip the drained pork pieces into the batter and fry them. Drain oil from work; stir in prepared sauce and microwave-cooked vegetables. Stir until all ingredients are heated and coated with sauce.
Recipe from: Contemporary Cooking, written by Bonnie A.
Monday, October 20, 2008
Tonight I made homemade pizza with lean ground beef and mushrooms on top. I like making it homemade so I can make a thinner crust, use lean beef, and less cheese. It was really good--Norris approved!:) I just used a Jiffy pizza crust mix, which is super easy and really cheap. You could easily make your own crust. I didn't take a picture because it was coming out of the oven when I got home from the gym and it was time to eat!
So, not a great picture of the apple bars, but an excellent treat! I know, I made treats yesterday...cinnamon rolls. I have had this recipe sitting here printed out since the day I saw it on another food blog-- Good Things Catered and it is so yummy. It tastes a lot like apple pie, but is a whole lot easier to make.
Here is the recipe:
Apple Spice Cookie Bars
2 c. plus 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp allspice ( I didn't have allspice or cloves, so I just used a dash more of nutmeg)
small pinch ground cloves
1/2 c. butter, melted
1 c. packed brown sugar
1 c. white sugar
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
2 apples, cored and diced (a little less than 2 c.)
cinnamon sugar for sprinkling (I used Splenda and cinnamon-- same trick)
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 9x13 pan with foil and baking spray. **This is my least favorite thing to do in baking, so I am certain it would also work fine with a well greased 9x13 pan.
-In medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves.
-Whisk to combine well and set aside.
-In another bowl, combine sugars and butter and beat on medium high until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.
-Add eggs, one at a time, beating well to combine.
-Add vanilla extract and beat to combine.
-Turn mixer on slow and fold in flour mixture a little at a time until just combined.
-Fold in apples.
-Spread mixture evenly into prepared pan and sprinkle top generously with cinnamon Splenda/sugar.
-Place in oven and bake until cooked through, when top slightly bounces back to the touch, about 33 minutes.
-Remove from oven and let cool completely before removing from pan, cutting and serving. (bars will be very soft)
ENJOY! These would be a great Thanksgiving treat if you wanted a little variation from the typical apple pie. I guess I'm in apple pie mode, since I did those dumplings a couple weeks ago...time to move on to a new flavor!
Tomorrow night: chicken tacos (simple!) and Wed. night, a new recipe for Beef Stroganoff. I used to think this stuff was the grossest when it was served in the cafeteria in elementary, so we'll see if I can get myself to like it this many years later!
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Ninety Minute Cinnamon Rolls
adapted from allrecipes.com
1/4 cup margarine, softened
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (divided)
1 (.25 ounce) package instant
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup water
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
6T margarine, softened
1/2 cup raisins (leave them out if you want)
1.Heat the milk in a small saucepan until it bubbles, then remove from heat. Mix in margarine; stir until melted. Let cool until lukewarm.
2.In a large mixing bowl, combine 2 1/4 cup flour, yeast, sugar and salt; mix well. Add water, egg and the milk mixture; beat well. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. When the dough has just pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 5 minutes. **You will have to add a little more flour as you knead it, as it is super sticky straight from the bowl. Don't add too much--you don't want tough rolls! Just enough to make the dough smooth.
3.Cover the dough with a warm damp cloth and let rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, cinnamon, and softened margarine.
5.Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until browned. Ice with Confectioner's Icing (or buttercream, or whatever you want) and serve warm.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
It's teen read week, and the theme is "Take A bite out of reading", so our librarian wanted us to make Pac Man cookies. I got what is truly the best sugar cookie recipe I have ever used from the blog Good Things Catered http://goodthingscatered.blogspot.com/ and we made 250 cookies (yes, rolled, cut, and iced....what a process with ten teenagers!!) We made buttercream and royal icing, colored it yellow and red (go Heights!:) and set out to ice them today. Whew---what a project. Fortunately, I have great students who stayed through their lunch hour and came in when they were done with classes to finish icing and helping me clean up. We are so glad to be done!
Next up: tomorrow--teaching another knife skills class, which means another round of Zippy Potato Soup (recipe in a previous post), then next week I am demonstrating cooking techniques, so we are making Sweet and Sour Pork with vegetables and brown rice. I will post that next week--it's great!
And the focaccia from the other night....all gone! We had excellent sandwiches on it on Monday. Last night I made some chicken and rice soup and we finished it off with that. Oh it's sooooo good! I can't wait to make it for our food sale at school!
Oh, and these cookies are sooooo not good for you, but enjoy one anyway!! Don't forget to cream the butter for 5 minutes. We tried not to, and it definitely does make a difference!
1 1/2 c. butter
1 1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 Tbsp lemon zest
5 c. flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
Powdered sugar, for rolling
-Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
-Cream butter and sugars in a mixer for 5 minutes.
-Add eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly.
-Add vanilla, almond, and lemon zest.
-Sift in flour, baking powder, and salt a little at a time.
-Do not over mix, this process should take about one minute.
-Chill dough for up to a week in the fridge, or roll out and cut right away.
-Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and bake cookies for 7-8 minutes.
-Wait until cookies are cooled before icing.
I found that this recipe made 30-32 big, thick cookies. I decorated the cookies with an edge of buttercream, filling of royal icing, and decoration with buttercream.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
I am planning to make paninis tomorrow with grilled chicken and swiss or cheddar cheese. I have a kind of spicy sauce that I am going to put on them (just something leftover from girls' night from last Tues). We tasted a bite of it tonight and it tastes like an herbed breadstick--it's really good. It could definitely be served on its own as the bread with a meal or as a sandwich. Use as little olive oil as possible to make it best and best for you. (you will have to use some though!)
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Chicken Breasts with Tomatillo salsa serve on top of spanish rice
Chicken Breasts with Tomatillo Salsa
Prep- 25 min, 4 servings
2 tablespoons yellow cornmeal
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon chili powder
½ teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 13-ounce can tomatillos
3 tablespoons snipped fresh cilantro
3 tablespoons finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
In a plastic bag combine cornmeal, flour, chili powder, salt, and black pepper. Add chicken pieces, a few at a time, shaking once. In a large skillet cook chicken in hot oil for 8 to 10 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink (170F), turning once. Meanwhile, for salsa, drain, rinse, and coarsely chop tomatillos. Cilantro, onion, lime juice, and jalapeno pepper. Serve salsa over chicken.
**You could also just buy the verde salsa in a jar. Pace makes it. I would still add fresh cilantro and lime juice, and jalapeno peppers if you want, to make it more fresh tasting.
Prep- 15 min., cook- 20
Makes- about 5 cups (6 to 8 side-dish servings)
½ cup chopped onion (1 medium)
½ cup chopped green sweet pepper
1 clove garlic; minced
1 Table spoon cooking oil
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 28-ounce can tomatoes, un-drained and cut up
¾ cup un-cooked long grain rice
1 4-ounce can diced green chile peppers, un-drained
Several dashes bottled hot pepper sauce (optional)
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
1. In a large skillet cook onion, sweet pepper,and garlic in hot oil until tender. Add chili powder; cook one more minute. Stir in un-drained tomatoes, chile peppers, hot pepper sauce (if desired), one cup water, ¼ teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, and rice
2. Bring to boil; reduce heat. Simmer covered for about twenty minutes or until rice is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed. If desired, sprinkle with the shredded cheddar cheese.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Red Lobster Cheese Biscuits
1 1/4 lbs. Bisquik
3 Oz. freshly shredded cheddar cheese
11 Oz. cold water
1/2 cup melted butter
1 teas. garlic powder
1/4 teas. salt
1/8 teas. onion powder
1/8 teas. dried parsley
To cold water, add Bisquik and cheese, blending in a mixing bowl.
Mix until dough is firm.
Using a small scoop, place the dough on a baking pan lined with
baking paper. Bake in 375 degree oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until
golden brown. While biscuits bake, combine spread ingredients.
Brush baked biscuits with the garlic topping.
CATEGORY: Low Fat
TIME: Prep: 25 min. + rising Bake: 15 min.
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 package (1/4 ounce) quick-rise yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup water
1/4 cup butter
4 cups thinly sliced peeled Rome Beauty or other baking apples (2 to 3 medium)
1/3 cup Splenda
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup skim milk
4 teaspoons sugar or Splenda
Directions: In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 cup flour, yeast, sugar and salt. In a saucepan, heat the water and butter to 120°-130°. Add to the dry ingredients; beat just until moistened. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.
Divide dough into four portions. Roll each portion into an 8-in. square. Cut into four 4-in. squares. Cut apple slices into thirds; toss with sugar, flour and cinnamon. Place 1/4 cup filling on each square; bring up the corners up over the filling and pinch to seal. Secure with a toothpick if needed. Place 3 in. apart on baking sheets coated with cooking spray.
Cover and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.
Brush with milk; sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 375° for 12-14 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to wire racks. Discard toothpicks before serving. Yield: 16 servings.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
I made some Braised Round Steak with Gravy, peas with mushrooms and garlic sauce, and biscuits. It was really pretty great! I have a few more packages of round steak in the deep freeze (they were on good sale!) so I am trying to find something different to do with each package...they need to be braised, so this was the perfect recipe for tonight.
Braised Round Steak with Gravy
2 large round steaks, fat trimmed (about 1.5 lbs worth, up to 2 lbs)
1 can 98% fat free cream of mushroom soup
3 beef bouillion cubes dissolved in 1 cup of boiling water
Heat a large skillet to medium high. Pan sear the steaks (about 1 minute on each side). Whisk together the mushroom soup with beef broth. Pour this mixture over the steaks in the pan to deglaze it and create a pan gravy. Put all of this in a casserole dish/roasting pan and put it on about 275 F for 2.5 hours. If you need it ready quicker, this is one of those recipes you could crank up to about 375 for 1.5-1.75 hours instead, or you could cook it slower if necessary. I think you could also do it in the crock pot. Yummy!!!
Oh, and spin was great tonight...always get a good sweat going with that!
Monday, September 29, 2008
And what I'm so proud of...my kids did demonstrations using small utensils in class over the last few days. The girls today did such a great job and turned out with such a great product. They were so proud of themselves, and they had such a great presentation! They chatted and told stories and what they were doing just like the Food Network Pros!!