Thursday, January 29, 2009

Hamburger Stroganoff

Hamburger Stroganoff

1/2 C. minced onion
1 clove minced garlic
2 Tbsp butter
1 1/2 lbs. lean ground beef
2-3 Tbsp flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper, or to taste
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
1 C. (8 oz) sour cream
1 lb. Country Pasta, cooked and drained
Saute onion and garlic in butter, over medium heat. Add meat and brown. Drain all but about 2 Tbsp of grease. Add flour, salt and pepper, stir, and cook for approximately 5 minutes. Add soups, stir and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Stir in sour cream. Heat through, sprinke with parsley (optional), and serve over hot Country Pasta noodles.

Alex's dance recital pictures

"Wouldn't it be loverly"

Chocolate Pancakes

Chocolate Pancakes

1 ½ cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1/3 cup sugar
1 TBSP baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
2 1/4 cups buttermilk
1 cup miniature chocolate chips (optional)

Sift together the flour, cocoa, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large mixing bowl. In another bowl whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, and oil. Add to the flour mixture and stir just until combined. Overstirring will create flatter pancakes. We like ours thick and fluffy. Lightly stir in chocolate chips if desired. Heat a griddle or frying pan to 350 degrees. Lightly butter the hot griddle or use cooking spray and laddle the pancake batter onto the griddle using about 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake. You can make yours into heart shapes by drawing a V with the batter. When bubbles begin to set around the edges of the pancake and the griddle-side of the cake is golden (though this is hard to tell with chocolate pancakes), gently flip the pancakes. Continue to cook 1 to 2 minutes or until the pancake is set. Serve with butter and maple syrup or with whipped cream and strawberries or raspberries.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Tyler's Crock Pot Cream Cheese Chicken

Crock Pot Cream Cheese Chicken

Great served over rice or noodles
I | 20 min prep
• 3 lbs chicken pieces ( I used boneless skinless chicken tenders)
• 1 (2/3 ounce) package Italian salad dressing mix
• 4 tablespoons melted butter (divided)
• 1 small onion, chopped
• 1 garlic clove, chopped
• 1 (10 1/2 ounce) can cream of chicken soup
• 8 ounces cream cheese
• 1/2 cup chicken broth
1. Place chicken pieces in crock pot and sprinkle Italian seasoning over chicken. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons melted butter.
2. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a sauce pan and saute onion and garlic. Add Cream of Chicken Soup, cream cheese, and chicken broth. Stir until smooth.Pour over chicken.
3. Cook on low for 4-6 hours.
Serve over your favorite noodles or rice

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Weekend Visit With Baby Nathan.....FUN FUN FUN !!

How to cleanly cut brownies!!

This isn't a recipe. I wanted to share with you all something that has made my life a lot easier, when it comes to brownies. I learned this a few years ago, but I'm still shocked to see the number of people who struggle with cutting brownies. Want to know the secret to easy to cut brownies? PLASTIC KNIVES!!!! You can use a plastic knife at any time with the brownies and it makes perfect squares. No more brownie build-up on regular knives as you cut. Try it, I think you'll like it!

Best Blondies

I made these Blondie's for Alex's class...they loved them. A couple of the boys asked for my secret recipe so here it is.... I omitted the nuts and coconut for the kids version. They are great either way.

The Best Blondies
1 c pecans, chopped
1 1/2 c shredded coconut
1 1/2 c flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
12 Tbs unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks) melted and cooled
1 1/2 c light brown sugar
2 large eggs lightly beaten
2 tsp vanilla
8 ounces chocolate chips

Set oven @ 350. Grease and pam spray 9 x 13 glass baking dish.
Wisk flour, baking powder, salt in bowl, set aside
Wisk melted butter and brown sugar til combined. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well. Fold in dry ingredients with spatula til just combined. Fold in chocolate, coconut and nuts and pour into prepared pan , smoothing top with spatula.
Bake 25-30 minutes. DO NOT overbake. Top will be shiney,cracked and gloden brown. Cool to room temp on wire rack before cutting.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Orange Muffins

Muffins with a light orange taste.... great with whipped cream cheese.
1/3 C. Butter or margarine
½ C. sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon grated orange peel
½ C. orange juice
¼ C. Milk
2 Cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
Place butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat for 1 minute. Add egg ,orange peel, orange juice and milk. Mix well.
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt, and add to bowl mix just until moistened. Do Not Overmix.
Fill greased muffin tins 2/3 full. Bake at 375* for approx 15 minutes or until to the tops begin to turn golden brown.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Basic Pancakes 2 Options

Basic Pancakes

2 Cups Flour
2 TBSP Baking Powder
1/4 C.sugar
1 tsp. Salt
2 Eggs
2 C. Milk
1/3 C. Oil

Sift together dry ingredients set a side. Mix eggs, milk and oil and add to flour mixture mix until all flour is well mositened. There will still be lumps in the batter DO NOT OVERMIX..... Prepare in usual manner on a griddle heated to 350*

The following is my favorite especially if you are watching your weight . When prepared as directed and using only 1/4 c. of batter per pancake your total caloric intake per pancake is 76 with 2 grams of fiber and 2 grams of fat making them (1 point each for any of you weight watchers )

Anissa's Oat/Whole Wheat Pancakes

1 1/3 c whole wheat or oat flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 egg
1 1/3 c buttermilk (if you don't have this, you could add some lemon juice or vinegar to regular milk)
1 Tbl brown sugar
1 Tbl oil

In a medium bowl, stir or sift dry ingredients together. Beat the egg, buttermilk, brown sugar, and oil together. Sitr into dry ingredients (just until moistened). Batter should be slightly lumpy. Pour 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake onto a hot griddle (I tried making the pancakes a little bigger than this and it was a bad idea! The whole wheat/oat flour makes the pancakes a little heavier than normal pancakes, so bigger pancakes of this recipe are hard to flip over). Turn when bubbles appear on the surface. Makes 12 (4 inch) pancakes.

If the batter is too thick for you, simply thin it with water. Also, these are very good with blueberries added. I usually pour batter on griddle and top with blueberries before turning them over.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Roasted Potatoes

Oven Roasted Potatoes
5 russet potatoes
4 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons seasoning salt
freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 450ºF.
Wash each potato well, peel if desired, although peeling is not necessary. Cut each potato into eight wedges, cutting first in half, then half again, and then halves of the quarters.
Combine the melted butter, olive oil and seasoning salt in a small bowl. Mix well to combine.
Toss the potato wedges in the butter/oil mixture and lay them out on a baking sheet individually, make sure the wedges are not actually touching each other.
Sprinkle all the wedges with freshly ground pepper and then bake for 45 minutes. Flip them at the 30 minute mark to crisp both sides.
Serve with ketchup or sour cream for dipping.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Pioneer Woman "Crash Hot Potatoes"

We had these potatoes as a side to seasoned Roasted Pork...they were a great addition.

Crash Hot Potatoes
Source: The Pioneer Woman

New Potatoes
Kosher Salt
Black Pepper
Olive Oil
Fresh chopped Rosemary or any other Herb your prefer

Begin by bringing a salted pot of water to boil. Add washed potatoes and cook until they are fork tender. Meanwhile, generously drizzle olive oil over a cookie sheet or baking dish (suited to the number of potatoes you’re cooking). When potatoes are finished cooking, place them on the cooking sheet or in the baking dish a few inches apart. Take a potato masher and gently press down on the potato until is slightly mashes. Turn the masher 90 degrees and mash again, ever so slightly. Don’t completely flatten the potato, though (PDub suggests that the taters look like cookies). When all of the potatoes are mashed, drizzle or brush olive oil over each one. Then salt and pepper them, adding the chopped rosemary at the end. Broil them at 450 degrees for about 20-25 minutes, until browned and crispy!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup

Chicken Noodle Soup with Homemade Noodles
• 4 qts. water
• 1 chicken, 3-1/2 to 4 pounds
• 1 large onion
• 5 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
• 5 stalks celery, tops left on, chopped
• 4 cloves garlic
• 1 tsp. salt
• pepper to taste
• 5 sprigs of fresh flat parsley
• 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
• 3 Tbsp. chopped parsley
Place water and chicken in pot, chop the onions with the clove of garlic, add onion, carrots, celery and garlic to soup and boil for 2 hours. Let cool. The bones should easily be removed from the chicken. Discard the bones with the skin. Be careful to remove all the gristle. Chop the meat and let the broth cool. Skim off the fat. Add the meat and remaining carrots. Boil for another 15 minutes and add the noodles

To Prepare Noodles :
2 cups of flour
3/4 tsp salt
1 egg
1/4 to 1/3 cup of milk

In mixing bowl combine flour, salt beat egg and milk separately then add to flour mixture. Mix until you produce a slightly sticky ball of dough. Flour the counter and roll out dough to 1/8 inch thickness. You want them very thin because they thicken when cooked. Cut noodles (use a pizza cutter) to desired size and place on wax paper. Let the noodles dry out on the counter for 1 hour before adding them to the soup. About 30 minutes before serving soup, drop noodles in and cook. It takes a little extra effort to make the noodles but it is so worth it! Your family will think you are a domestic goddess!

Tip for cutting noodles that I have found helpful :On a flour-dusted surface, roll out the noodles to a thickness of about 1/8". Lightly dust the top of the noodle dough and roll the mixture up as if you were making a jellyroll. Slice into 1/3" strips, then unroll the noodle. Add to the soup continue cooking for 20 – 30 mi

Friday, January 2, 2009

Margherita Pizza with Italian Pizza Crust


Margherita Pizza
• 1 pizza crust dough
• Cooking spray
• 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
• 1 garlic clove, halved
• 5 plum tomatoes, thinly sliced (about 3/4 pound)
• 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded fresh mozzarella cheese
• 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
• 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
• 1/8 teaspoon salt
• 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven to 400°.
Press crust dough onto a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; pat into a 13 x 11-inch rectangle. Bake at 400° for 8 minutes. Remove crust from oven, and brush with 1/2 teaspoon oil. Rub crust with cut sides of garlic.
Arrange tomato slices on crust, leaving a 1/2-inch border; sprinkle evenly with cheese. Bake at 400° for 12 minutes or until cheese melts and crust is golden.
Combine 1/2 teaspoon oil and vinegar, stirring with a whisk.
Sprinkle pizza evenly with sliced basil, salt, and pepper. Drizzle the vinegar mixture evenly over the pizza. Cut pizza into 8 pieces.

Italian Pizza Crust/Bread

One 1/4-ounce package active dry yeast

1 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees F)

3/4 to 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, to your taste

3 1/2 cups bread flour or all-purpose unbleached flour, sifted

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (only add if making pizza)

1. In a large metal mixing bowl, previously warmed under hot running water, then dried, dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Let it rest for 5 minutes, then add the salt and shake gently.
2. Add the flour and olive oil (only if you are making pizza) and mix until you can knead it with your hands. The dough should stick a little bit for the first few minutes but will then form itself into a ball with more kneading and folding. Once it is formed into a ball, dump it onto a lightly floured wooden surface and knead for exactly 12 minutes. If making bread, do not add flour or water, if needed, until at least the eighth minute of kneading.
3. Once the ball of dough is smooth, place it in a lightly floured or oiled bowl, cover with a clean dish towel, and let rise in a warm (80 degrees F) place, such as inside a turned-off oven, for 2 hours.
4. Punch down the dough after 1 hour, cover, and let rise another hour. For more flavor, let the rising process go on longer: cover the dough with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight (this is called a cold rise), but let the dough return to room temperature before working it again. Now it is ready for making into a pizza. If you are making bread, go on to step 5, otherwise, use this dough for any recipe calling for Basic Bread and Pizza Dough.
5. Preheat the oven to 475 degrees F. Transfer the dough to a baking stone, form into the shape you wish, and score with a razor blade or very sharp knife. Place a pan of water in the bottom of the oven, then the loaf on the baking stone on the center rack. If you have another baking stone or baking tiles, you can line some in the oven for better tasting and textured bread. Reduce the oven temperature to 425 degrees F and bake until golden brown on top, about 40 minutes, spraying it with water at first. Let cool on a wire rack before slicing.
Variation : Use 6 tablespoons milk and 3/4 cup water instead of 1 cup water for a richer flavor.
Makes 2 thin-crust 16-inch pizzas, 5 very thin 14-inch pizzas, or 4 slightly thick 12-inch pizzas, 10 pizzette , ten 4-inch empanada or calzone disks, or 1 large round loaf bread

Basic Bread and Pizza Dough in an Electric Mixer
Read the instructions to your mixer. This recipe was tested on a KitchenAid mixer. I use my bosch.

One 1/4-ounce package active dry yeast

1 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees F)

3/4 to 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, to your taste

3 1/2 cups bread flour or all-purpose unbleached flour, sifted

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (only add if making pizza)

1. In a large metal mixing bowl, previously warmed under hot running water, then dried, dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Let it rest for 5 minutes, then add the salt and shake gently.
2. Add 2 1/2 cups of the flour and the olive oil (only if you are making pizza dough) and attach to the mixer affixed with the dough hook. Run according to the directions of the manufacturer, about 2 minutes, adding the remaining flour in 1/2-cup increments. Let the mixer run until the dough is pulled off the walls of the bowl and is being pushed by the dough hook.
3. Once the ball of dough is smooth, remove the mixer bowl and remove the dough from the bowl. Place it in a lightly floured or oiled bowl, cover with a clean dish towel, and let rise in a warm (80 degrees F) place, such as inside a turned-off oven, for 2 hours. Proceed as the recipe instructs.

Secrets of Baking Pizza
There are many different ways you can make pizzas, beyond the topping. They can be cooked at temperatures ranging from 350 degrees F in a home oven to 900 degrees F in a commercial wood-burning brick pizza oven. High heat gives the best results. I tend to make pizzas in three different ways. Sometimes I make pizza on a large 16-inch pizza pan, either solid or perforated, or directly on a baking stone. The dough is about a third of an inch thick, and I bake it at either 555 degrees F for just a few minutes or at 450 degrees F for a little longer. Or I make a thinner pizza, about 1/8 inch thick, which I cook for about 10 minutes at 400 degrees F. Best thing is to experiment, but without a doubt your pizza will taste better if you are using baking stones, preferably 2, one on the rack above the pizza and one either directly under the pizza dough or on the rack under the pizza.