Sunday, December 30, 2012

Brazilian Lemonade like Tucanos





Brazilian Lemonade
4 juicy limes (try and find ones with thin, smooth skins; they’re the juiciest and the thin skin cuts down on the chance of your drink being bitter)
1 c. sugar
6 c. cold water
6 Tbsp. sweetened condensed milk
Mix cold water and sugar very well and chill until ready to use. This step can be done ahead of time.
Wash limes thoroughly with soap (I just use hand-dishwashing soap or regular hand soap); you need the soap to get the wax and pesticides off of the limes because you’re using the WHOLE lime, baby. Cut the ends off the limes and then cut each lime into 8ths.
Place 1/2 of the limes in your blender.
Add 1/2 of the sugar water, place the lid on your blender, and pulse 5 times. Place a fine-mesh strainer over a pitcher (the one you’ll serve the lemonade in) and pour the blended mixture through the strainer and into the pitcher. Use a spoon to press the rest of the liquid into the pitcher. Dump the pulp and stuff in the strainer into the trash. Repeat with remaining limes and sugar water. Add sweetened condensed milk; DO NOT leave this step out unless you will die of a horrible sweetened condensed milk allergy because this is the secret ingredient! You may want to taste test it at this point; I used giant, thick-skinned limes tonight and didn’t test it and it came out a little bitter. If it’s bitter, just add some more sugar and maybe a little more milk.
Serve immediately over lots of ice. This does not keep well, so don’t make this in advance (although you can cut the limes, mix the sugar water, and measure the sweetened condensed milk in advance). Serves 4

Monday, December 24, 2012

Pancakes

My family's favorite pancakes. Add 1/4-1/2 cup pureed veggies for added health! You can also add a dash of cinnamon or a 1/2 tsp of vanilla.


Ingredients (Chill the batter for 20-30 minutes beforehand if possible)

1 cup flour
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk, more if needed for desired consistency
1 egg
2 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted butter

Directions
  1. Preheat a lightly oiled griddle over medium-high heat.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl, beat together egg, milk and oil. Pour milk mixture into flour mixture. Beat until smooth. QUICK METHOD- Combine dry ingredients and mix well. Add other ingredients to dry ingredients and immediately mix until well combined.
  3. Pour or scoop the batter onto the hot griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot.










Friday, December 21, 2012

Peaches and Cream Stuffed French Toast

 

Ingredients:

For the filling:
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup sliced fresh peaches
For the French toast:
4 slices French bread
4 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Diced peaches and maple syrup, for serving

Directions:

1. To make the filling, in a small bowl, mix cream cheese, powdered sugar, cinnamon and vanilla extract, until smooth. Spread cream cheese filling on slices of bread; top with peach slices. Make two French toast "sandwiches."

2. In shallow pan or pie plate, beat eggs, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon. Dip the sandwiches in the egg mixture, on each side.
3. Heat a large skillet or griddle to medium-high heat. Cook French toast sandwiches, on both sides, until golden brown, about 4-5 minutes each side. Serve warm with diced peaches and maple syrup.

Recipe from http://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com/

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Crockpot Chicken for the freezer

Ingredients:
1 large bag frozen chicken (about 8 chicken breasts, or as much chicken as fits in your crockpot)
1 onion, cut into chunks
Salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika

Directions:
Place half of onion on the bottom of Crockpot. Layer chicken into the Crockpot. You can defrost the chicken if you'd like but frozen is fine. Place remaining onion pieces over the top. Optional: Sprinkle with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika. Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 3 hours or until chicken is done through and tender.
Put each chicken breast into its own plastic bag with a spoonful of the juices from the bottom of the Crockpot. This will keep it moist when you defrost it. I use regular zip-lock bags because I use the chicken quickly. If your chicken will be in the freezer for a while, you might want to use freezer bags. Put all the individual bags of chicken into a bigger bag. This keeps the chicken all in one place in the freezer so it's easier to find, and it adds another layer of protection from freezer burn.  Defrost chicken and use in soups, sandwiches, casseroles, and pasta dishes.

Cream Cheese and Chicken Enchiladas

Ingredients:
2-3 chicken breasts, shredded {OR rotisserie chicken}
1 {8 oz.} pkg. cream cheese
1 28 oz. can green enchilada sauce
1 can black beans, drained & rinsed
2 cups cooked rice
Tortillas
1-2 cups shredded Monterrey & Colby cheese

Directions:
Cook rice. Cook chicken and shred. (Boil or bake it so there is no need to touch any raw chicken.) Mix the shredded chicken, cream cheese, and 2 cups of the enchilada sauce together.  Spray the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Pour half a cup of the enchilada sauce into the bottom of the baking dish. Layer the rice and beans onto tortillas. Top with chicken mixture. Roll up each of the tortillas and place them in the baking dish seam side down.  Top with 1 cup of the enchilada sauce and 1-2 cups of shredded cheese. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake at 375 for about 25 minutes. Uncover the enchiladas, turn on the broiler, and broil for about 3-5 minutes uncovered or just long enough to brown the cheese.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

English Toffee



English Toffee
1 C. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 package chocolate chips
1/2 C. finely chopped walnuts
1 1/2 C. butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla

First, chop nuts and spread half on the bottom of the cookie sheet. Have your chocolate chips measured and ready. Stir and cook the butter, sugar and salt in a sauce pan over medium-high heat until light brown. Stir fast for 5-10 minutes. When it reaches the right color (dark carmel) remove from heat and add vanilla. Pour over the chopped nuts and spread out as best you can with a knife or spatula. Next, pour chips on and spread to melt. Sprinkle the remaining nuts onto melted chocolate. Refrigerate. When cool, take a knife; place the tip into the toffee and break into desired pieces. Store in refrigerator in closed container.

*You can also freeze this candy to eat later!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Qashpi

This is often served for breakfast, though it can be served for other meals as well.

Ingredients:
1/2 lb Queso fresco or cotija, chopped
1 red, yellow or white onion, chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 lime or 1/2 lemon, squeezed
Salt to taste
5 potatoes, cooked

Directions:
Mix cheese, onion, cilantro, lime and salt in bowl. Serve over potato (as you would chili). Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Heavenly Bread Pudding


INGREDIENTS (see also sauce below)
6 large croissants (Costco)
8 large eggs
1 c. sugar
3 c. heavy cream
2 tsps. vanilla bean paste (available at Williams and Sonoma, but regular vanilla can be substituted)

DIRECTIONS
Butter a 9x13 dish.  Slice the croissants in half lengthwise.  Layer half of croissants, crust-side down, in bottom of pan, then layer the other half, crust-side up, on top.  In a bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar; then whisk in the cream and vanilla paste.  Pour slowly over the croissants and smash down with a spoon and allow to soak for 10 minutes.  Place the 9x13 pan inside a larger pan for a water bath fill the outside pan with water ¾ full and bake at 350 for 1 ½ hours (check the pudding after 1 hour 15 minutes and take out of oven if it is golden brown).  Make sure the eggs are all cooked.

Dish into bowls and pour a couple spoonfuls of sauce on top.  Sprinkle with raspberries, boysenberries, etc.  (I get the Costco berry mix in the frozen food section and add some sugar.). Serve warm or at room temperature.

**I covered the pudding the first half of the bake time with tinfoil. I tented it and cut a few holes in it to allow steam to escape like Ina suggests in her bread pudding recipe.

**You can add raisins, nuts, chocolate, coconut etc to the pudding. Just place it between the two croissant pieces (make sure it is covered or it may burn)


SAUCE
1 cube butter
1 c. sugar
½ c. heavy cream
1 tsp. vanilla

Melt butter in small saucepan and add other ingredients.  Stir on medium-low heat until sugar is dissolved.  Do not boil.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Locro de Zapallo (squash or pumpkin stew)


















Ingredients:
-1 small onion finely chopped
-1 garlic clove finely chopped
-1TBS olive oil
-1 TBSP Mexican hot sauce (I used Valentina brand, since that is what I had in hand)
-3 lbs. Banana squash, butternut squash ,any yellow almost orange squash or even Halloween pumpkin chopped in small 1/2 inch squares
-1 potato chopped in 1/2 inch squares
-1/2 cup frozen corn
-1/2 cup frozen peas
-1/2 cup queso fresco crumbled or you may use mozzarella cheese
-1/4 cup milk (optional)
Garnish with chopped cilantro

Directions:
Saute onion, garlic and Mexican hot sauce in olive oil until onions are soft. Add chopped squash, stir, add 1 cup of water and let cook in medium heat for 45 minutes to an hour stirring every 15 minutes until squash is soft (press squash against pot). When squash is soft add  potatoes, frozen corn and peas, let cook for 20 minutes or until potato is cooked. Add cheese once everything is cooked, stir and the squash is supposed to look mushy but if it is too thick you may add the milk. Garnish each serving with cilantro and serve with warm white rice.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Oven Roasted Potatoes with Bacon

1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 lb hickory smoked, thick sliced bacon
3 1/2 lbs Yukon Gold Potatoes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, freshly grated
coarse salt
fresh ground pepper
fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 425 and put a big pot of water on to boil.
Peel and chop into mouth-size pieces. Place in pot of water and boil about 10 min, until just barely fork tender. Meanwhile cut bacon into about 1/2 inch pieces prior to cooking, then cook until golden but not crunchy. 
Next, prepare the baking sheet by brushing 1 tablespoon of olive oil and half the bacon drippings on the bottom of the pan. Place in 425° oven for 35-40 minutes. Reduce temperature to 375°, turn potatoes over and sprinkle with the bacon, garlic, and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Add more salt and pepper if desired.  Return to oven for an additional 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are evenly browned and cheese is melted.  Remove from oven and sprinkle with fresh parsley.  Makes 4-6 servings, depending on serving size. Serve immediately!



 Recipe from myadventuresinthecountry.com.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Porcupine Meatballs

Ingredients:
Meatballs
-1 1/2 lbs ground beef
-2 Tbs chopped onion
-1 tsp seasoned salt
-1/2 tsp pepper
-1-2 tsp oregano, basil or any other spice desired for flavor
-2-3 cups cooked rice
Sauce
-1 can tomato soup
-1 can water

Directions:
Mix meatball ingredients together. Shape into balls and place in a deep skillet or 9x13 pan. Mix sauce and heat to boiling. Pour over meat. Cover. Cook over low heat 1 hour or bake 325 degrees F for 1 hour. Serve over plain rice. Freeze meatballs for a quick freezer meal.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Slow-Cooker Lemon Garlic Chicken



4 to 5 pound chicken
For the seasoning rub:
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 sprigs thyme, leaves stripped and minced
For the cooking liquid:
2 lemons, quartered
1 head garlic, cloves separated, but left in their skins
2 chicken bouillon cubes or 1 teaspoon bouillon paste, divided (optional for richer flavor)
2 sprigs thyme
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 cup chicken broth
2 sprigs rosemary
For the gravy:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
Remove the bag of gizzards and discard (or reserve for stock). Pat the chicken dry with paper towels.
Mix all the seasoning ingredients together in a bowl. Gently work your fingers under the skin covering the breast meat and slide them back and forth to separate the skin from the meat without tearing it. Scoop up a dollop of the seasoning and work it under the skin covering both breasts. Rub any remaining seasoning over the drumsticks and thighs. Transfer the chicken to the slow cooker, breast-side up.
Squeeze and reserve the juice from one of the lemons. Stuff the rinds into the cavity of the chicken along with one whole bouillon cube and a few garlic cloves. Crumble the other bouillon cube over the chicken and rub it into the skin. Arrange the remaining lemon quarters, the rest of garlic cloves, and the thyme around the chicken. Combine the reserved lemon juice, the soy sauce, and the broth, and pour it over the chicken.
Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on high heat for 4 to 6 hours. Thirty minutes or so before the time is done, add the rosemary sprigs.
Remove chicken from the slow-cooker and allow it to rest on a baking sheet, tented with foil, for about 20 minutes. The wings and drumsticks may fall away as you lift the chicken; this is normal.
While the chicken is resting, strain the cooking liquid into a sauce pan and bring to a rapid simmer. Scoop out a half cup of the liquid and whisk it with the flour in a separate bowl. Slowly pour the flour slurry back into the cooking liquid while whisking. Continue simmering and whisking until the gravy thickens. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.
When ready to serve, remove the skin from the chicken and discard. Use your fingers to pull the meat away off the bones; it should come away easily with gentle pressure or use a knife as needed. Serve the breasts, thighs, and drumsticks right away and tear the remaining meat into shreds for using in leftovers. Serve with the gravy alongside.

NOTES:
I just did this with some chicken breasts for easiness
Rosemary tends to get bitter if cooked for too long. Adding it in the last half hour of cooking helps give the dish rosemary flavor without the bitterness.

Cooking times longer than 6 hours are not recommended. With longer cooking, the chicken bones start to become too soft, making it difficult to separate the meat and get a good gravy

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Green enchiladas


Ingredients:
-24 corn tortillas
-2 chicken breast (cooked and shredded)
-15 small tomatillos or 10 big ones
-1/3 bunch cilantro
-1 garlic clove
-1/4 onion divided
-Salt to taste
-1 cup queso fresco, cotija or feta cheese crumbled
-1 red bell pepper chopped
OPTIONAL:
-1/2 cup onion
-1/2 cup frozen corn
-Sour cream




Instructions:
Boil tomatillos in water(should cover tomatillos) for 5 minutes or until tomatillos change color. Blend tomatillos, cilantro, garlic, onion, and salt to taste.
To assemble enchilada: fry corn tortillas in just a little bit of oil so the tortillas can get soft (you can also just warm it up in the microwave but it doesn't taste as good).
Fold corn tortilla and add cooked chicken inside of it. After you are done assembling the enchiladas, pour the tomatillos sauce on top of enchiladas.
To garnish enchilada: sprinkle queso fresco or cotija or feta cheese on top, chop red bell peppers, chop onions, corn and/or sour cream.
Serve enchiladas with white rice. I put on my enchiladas cheese and red bell peppers. It is so delicious!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Chicken Chorizo Zucchini Stir Fry

Ingredients
  • ½ red onion, chopped (I use white if I don't have red)
  • ½ chopped cilantro
  • 4 large zucchini, cut into 1/3 inch cubes
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and chopped (green is okay if that's all you have)
  • 6-8 oz. Mexican chorizo (This is spicy! Add less until you know how spicy you like it, say 3-4 oz.)
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, chopped or shredded
  • 1 Tb. oil, if needed
  • Salt and Pepper

Instructions

  1. Heat a large skillet over medium-high. Brown the chorizo for 2-3 minutes, then add the chicken until warmed through. Remove the chorizo and chicken, and set aside.
  2. Add the onions to the skillet and sauté for 1 minute. Add the zucchini, red pepper and a tablespoon of oil if needed. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, until just cooked, but not mushy. Salt and pepper to taste. Then add the protein back in.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in the cilantro. Serve immediately!
Got recipe from here: http://punchfork.com/r?url=http%3A%2F%2Faspicyperspective.com%2F2011%2F02%2Fchicken-chorizo-no-potato-hash.html

Pavlova 2

This makes a small size pavlova for 4-6 people. Double the mix for a good family size pavlova.

 PAVLOVA
2 egg whites (large eggs)
1 ½ cup sugar (C&H is finest)
½ teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon vinegar
1 teaspoon cornflour (cornstarch)
4 tablespoons boiling water

Put in a bowl and beat until peaks form and are very very stiff.
Bake at 300° for 10 min & 200° for 1 hour.
Top with freshly whipped cream , strawberries, kiwi and passionfruit.
Tips:
Leave in oven to cool, do not open oven door during cooking. Put on lightly greased foil covered flat tray. Heap the mixture in center as high as you can, use spatula to raise the sides as high as you can make them. Make sure no egg shells get in and make sure bowl is freshly cleaned and dried.

Recipe from Annette Smith who got it from Barbara Baker, both Aussies

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Skillet Mac and Cheese from America's Test Kitchen

3 1/2 c. water
1 (12 ox) can evaporated Milk
3 cups elbow macaroni
salt and pepper
1 tsp corn starch
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp hot sauce
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups shredded monterey Jack cheese
3 TB butter

Bring 3 1/2 cups water, 1 cup evap milk, macaroni and 1/2 tsp salt to simmer in skillet over high heat, stirring often until Mac is tender. Whisk remaining 1/2 cup evap milk, cornstarch, mustard and tobasco together then stir into skillet. Continue to simmer until thickened, about 1 min.
Remove from heat, stir in chesses one handful at a time--add additional water as needed to adjust sauce consistency. Stir in butter and season with salt and pepper.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Baked Chicken with a Ritz Crust

3-4 chicken breasts (2 big ones)
Ritz crackers, crushed
Italian seasoning and any other seasoning you like to add flavor
Salt and pepper


Fillet and cut chicken in to smaller pieces about 1/2"-3/4" thick and 2-3 inches across. In a bowl add crushed ritz crackers and all the seasonings you'd like. Salt and pepper chicken directily, then dip into bowl with ritz crackers and completely cover. Put chicken in 9x9 dish and bake at 350 for 20 or so minutes until done.

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes



1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cups onion, diced
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
2 cups whole milk
2 cloves garlic
2 1/4 cups shredded cheese (I used a blend of cheddar, mozzarella, and monterey jack), divided
1/3 cup chives, snipped
4 large yukon gold potatoes (any kind will do), skins on, thinly sliced


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. For sauce, melt butter in saucepan over medium heat, then add diced onion until soft. Next, stir in flour thoroughly into the onions and add the mil and garlic. Stir sauce over medium/high heat until it bubbles and thickens. Remove from heat and stir in 2 cups of grated cheese. Set aside.

Next, spray 9x9 with pam. Add a single layer of potato slices in the bottom of the dish, followed by a sprinkling of snipped chives and a spoonful or two of the cheese sauce. Add another layer and repeat until potatoes are used up. Pour the sauce (most will still be left) over the potatoes and shake a little to get the sauce to ooze down. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup cheese on top and another sprinkling of chives. Place on cookie sheet in case it bubbles over (mine didn't) and bake for 60 minutes until brown and bubbly.

Recipe from familyfeedbag.com

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookies (from Brooke S)



1/2 cup shortening
1 stick butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs

2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 pack vanilla instant pudding (large or small)
1 bag chocolate chips

Blend shortening, butter, and sugars. Add vanilla and eggs.
In seperate bowl mix flous, salt, baking soda, and vanilla. Mix with sugar mixture. Stir in chocolate chips.
Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Marinara Sauce (from Kathy)

Use about 20 tomatoes
In a food processor (or I grate them), I process the tomatoes. Then I cook them down until they get quite thick. It can take 4-6 hours depending on how many I have. I add salt, pepper and Italian seasoning to taste.

In a large frying pan, I saute, in olive oil, two large onions that have been chopped into pieces.  When they are about half way cooked, I add a lot of sliced mushrooms that have been sliced. When the onions and mushrooms are just about cooked, I add some grated garlic, salt, and Pepper to taste. Saute together for a minute of two and remove from heat.

In the bottom of a large pot, I brown 2 pounds of hamburger, or 1 pound of hamburger and one pound of pork or veal. Season with seasoning salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning to taste. When the meat is browned. Add the tomatoes and the onion mixture and heat through together.

To this I add one, two or all, depending on my mood and how things are tasting to me: large container of any kind of Prego Spaghetti sauce, 2-15oz cans of Italian stewed tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, 1-2 tablespoons of granulated sugar, water.

Sometimes I leave out the meat and add fresh cooked or steamed veggies. I don't cook them in the spaghetti sauce because it makes the sauce too watery.

Bowtie Pasta Salad (From Brooke S.)


16 oz bow tie pasta cooked and cooled
1 bag baby spinach leaves
1 red bell pepper sliced
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1 large can mandarin oranges drained
2 cooked seasoned chicken breasts chopped (omit this if you want vegetarian)
1/2 cup sugared pecans
Poppy seed dressing

Lightly mix ingredients together in salad bowl.

Poppy seed dressing1 cup olive oil
1 tsp salt
1/2 c sugar
1/2 tsp dried tarragon
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 tsp mustard
1 TB minced onion
1 TB poppy seed
Blend ingredients together in a blender or food processor for 2 minutes.  Dressing will be thick.

Sugared pecans1 cup pecans
1 TB orange juice
3 TB sugar

Heat the juice and 2 TB of sugar in small fry pan.  Add the nuts and stir gently for 2 minutes until the juice is absorbed.  Transfer to small bowl.  Add the rest of the sugar.  Spread nuts on foil on cookie sheet.  Bake at 375 for 8 minutes.  Cool and store in fridge.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Whipped Vanilla Bean Frosting




Ingredients
3 sticks + 2 tablespoons (375 grams/13 ounces) unsalted butter, softened and cut into cubes
3 cups sifted (480 grams/1 lb + 1 ounce) confectioners’ sugar (icing, powdered)
3 tablespoons (45 mL) milk
1 vanilla bean, scraped
1 teaspoon (5 mL) pure vanilla extract — I use Nielsen-Massey Vanillas 8-oz. Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Extract
pinch of salt
Method
1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip butter for 8 minutes on medium speed (I use “4″ on my KitchenAid). Butter will become very pale & creamy.
2. Add remaining ingredients and mix on low speed for 1 minute, then on medium speed for 6 minutes. Frosting will be very light, creamy, and fluffy.
3. Best used right away.
4. You can eliminate the vanilla bean and use a total of 1 1/2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract.

Fluffy Vanilla Cake



Yield: One 2-layer, 8-inch round cake
Ingredients
5 large egg whites (5 ounces/150 grams) at room temperature
3/4 cup whole milk (180 mL/6 liquid ounces), at room temperature
2 1/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (9 grams) — I use Nielsen-Massey Vanillas 8-oz. Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Extract
2 3/4 cups cake flour, sifted (11 ounces/315 grams)
1 3/4 cups sugar (12 ounces/350 grams)
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon baking powder (19.5 grams)
3/4 teaspoon salt (5 grams)
12 tablespoons unsalted butter (6 ounces/170 grams), at room temperature and cut into cubes

Method
1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease, line with parchment, and flour two round 8-inch pans.
2. In a medium bowl or measuring cup, combine and stir the egg whites, 1/4 cup of milk, and the vanilla. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the dry ingredients together on low speed (I use the “stir” setting on my mixer) for 30 seconds.
4. Add the butter and remaining 1/2 cup of milk, and mix on low speed until just moistened. Increase to medium speed and mix for 1 1/2 minutes.
5. Scrape the sides of the bowl and begin to add the egg mixture in 3 separate batches; beat on medium speed for 20 seconds after each addition.
6. Divide the batter in two, spreading it evenly with a small offset palette knife. If you have a kitchen scale, weigh to ensure 2 even layers.
7. Bake 25-35 minutes or until a cake tester comes clean when inserted into the center. Be so careful to not overbake. Check cake at 20 minutes, but not before, and once you feel it’s almost ready, set the timer for 2 minute intervals. Let cool on racks for 10 minutes before loosening the sides with a small metal spatula, and invert onto greased wire racks. Gently turn cakes back up, so the tops are up and cool completely.
8. Wrap tightly and store at room temperature for up to 2 days, refrigerator for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 2 months. Best eaten the same day as baked.


from sweetapolita.com

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Ham and Cheese Sliders





Ingredients:

24 good white dinner rolls
24 pieces good honey ham
24 small slices Swiss cheese
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup miracle whip


Poppy seed sauce 
1 Tablespoon poppyseeds
1 1/2 Tablespoons yellow mustard
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 Tablespoon minced onion
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Instructions:
In a small bowl, mix together mayonnaise and miracle whip. Spread onto both sides of the center of each roll. Place a slice of ham and a slice of Swiss inside of each roll. Close rolls and place them into a large baking dish or heavy cookie sheet. Place very close together.

In a medium bowl, whisk together all of the poppy seed sauce ingredients. Pour evenly over all of the sandwiches. You do not have to use all of the sauce! Just use enough to cover the tops. Let sit 10 minutes or until butter sets slightly. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until cheese is melted. Uncover and cook for 2 additional minutes or until tops are slightly brown and crispy. Serve warm.

Note: Sandwiches can be assembled a day ahead and kept in the fridge ready to bake.
Recipe from thegirlwhoateeverything

Classic Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Classic American Buttercream frosting. This recipe uses powdered sugar, butter, vanilla and milk. This is a great recipe for decorating and piping on cupcakes and cake.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks or 1/2 pound), softened (but not melted!) Ideal texture should be like ice cream.
  • 3-4 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar, SIFTED
  • 1/4 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • up to 4 tablespoons milk or heavy cream
Instructions
  1. Beat butter for a few minutes with a mixer with the paddle attachment on medium speed. Add 3 cups of powdered sugar and turn your mixer on the lowest speed (so the sugar doesn’t blow everywhere) until the sugar has been incorporated with the butter. Increase mixer speed to medium and add vanilla extract, salt, and 2 tablespoons of milk/cream and beat for 3 minutes. If your frosting needs a more stiff consistency, add remaining sugar. If your frosting needs to be thinned out, add remaining milk 1 tablespoons at a time.

French Peasant Bread



Ingredients
  • 1 pkg dry yeast or 2 1/4 tsp yeast
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 TBSP sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 4 cups flour
  • olive oil
  • corn meal
  • melted butter
Directions

Place yeast, water, sugar and salt in warm bowl and stir until dissolved. Add flour and stir until blended. Do not knead. Cover and let rise one hour or until doubled in size. Flour hands, remove dough from the bowl and place in 2 rounds on an oiled cookie sheet sprinkled with corn meal. Cover with bread cloth (or loosely with saran wrap sprayed with pam). Let rise an additional hour. Brush the top with melted butter and bake at 425 F for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 F and cook an additional 15 minutes. Remove from oven and brush again with butter. Serve warm. Takes just under 3 hours from start to finish.

Vegan Tomato Soup

Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2-1 cup chopped onion (I use 1/2)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrot
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 2 (28 ounce) cans crushed tomatoes or 8 cups peeled tomatoes or about 12 medium tomtaoes
  • 3 1/2 cups vegetable broth or water or chicken broth
  • 1/2-1 tablespoon vegetarian Worcestershire sauce (I use 1/2)
  • 3/4-1 teaspoon salt (depending on what your broth is)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 drops hot pepper sauce
Directions
  1. Heat oil in a large pot oven over medium-high heat. Saute onion and garlic until onion is tender.
  2. Add carrot and celery; cook 7 to 9 minutes until tender, stirring frequently. Stir in tomatoes, broth, Worcestershire sauce, salt, thyme, pepper and hot pepper sauce. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer 20 minutes, stirring frequently. 
**From allrecipes but altered a bit by me

Monday, August 13, 2012

Mashed Cauliflower

Ingredients:
-2 heads cauliflower, trimmed and roughly chopped
-4-6 garlic cloves, whole
-2 tsp fresh thyme (or a little over 1 tsp dried thyme)
-4 Tbs butter
-3/4 tsp + salt
-1/2 tsp pepper

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Add the cauliflower and garlic and cook 6-8 minutes, or until fork tender. Drain and put in food processor or puree with an immersion blender. Add the butter, thyme, salt and pepper. Puree until smooth. Top with a little Parmesan cheese if desired. Serves 8.

Chocolate Surprise Cupcakes

Ingredients:

Cupcakes
-3 cups flour
-2 to 2 1/2 cups sugar (depending on how sweet you like your cupcakes)
-1/2 cup cocoa powder
-1 tsp salt
-2 tsp baking soda
-2/3 cup vegetable oil
-2 cups water
-2 Tbs vinegar
-2 tsp vanilla

Filling
-1(8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
-1 egg
-1/2 cup sugar
-1/4 tsp salt
-1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24+ muffin cups with paper liners.
Cupcake mixture: In large bowl, mix together flour, 2 to 2 1/2 cups sugar, cocoa powder, 1 tsp salt and baking soda. Stir in oil, water, vinegar and vanilla until blended.
Filling Mixture: In medium bowl, beat together the cream cheese, egg, 1/2 cup sugar and 1/4 tsp salt until light and fluffy. Stir in chocolate chips.
Pour cupcake mixture into muffin cups, filling each 1/3 full. Add spoonful of filling mixture into each cupcake. Pour remaining cupcake mixture into muffin cups. Bake for 25 minutes. Allow to cool to let filling set. Great stored in the fridge for the next day. Tasty with chocolate or cream cheese frosting, but also delicious by themselves.

Recipe from allrecipies.com


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The 4-Hour Body Recipe Ideas

Some High Protein and/or Low Carb Meal Ideas for those doing The 4 Hour Body:The 4-

Fish tacos (fish, cabbage, salsa, maybe tarter sauce)
Chicken Breast broiled or baked with olive oil and herbs
Lettuce wraps
Soups
Salads 

Chili

Crockpot

  • Crock pot chicken and black beans

BeansTry adding cumin to the beans and mixing with cooked veggies.

Spinach, tuna and bean salad with oil and vinegar

Add more as you think of them!