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2014 Recipe Round Up

Snacky Sunday- Bacon Wrapped Kielbasa with Brown Sugar Glaze and Pizza biscuits

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We took down and put away Christmas this morning, and ended up eating a late breakfast.   Last Pats game of the regular season today, and I thought I'd make some things that would be easy to snack on in front of the tv.

These go together quick if you do them assembly line style, and it's a good payoff in the end.   Sticky, meaty, sweet deliciousness.    I make sure to do the clean up right away before everything hardens. 





* Exported from MasterCook *

Bacon Wrapped Kielbasa Bites with Brown Sugar Glaze - What the Fork Food Blog

  1                lb.  kielbasa- used Hillshire Farm Polska Kielbasa Links
10 slices center cut bacon
  1                  C  brown sugar -- packed
  3               Tbsp  dijon mustard
  3               Tbsp  rice wine vinegar
  1/2 Tbsp fresh cracked black pepper

Heat oven to 375.   For easier clean up,  line a baking sheet with foil or parchment.   Top with a baking rack lightly sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.

Cut each kielbasa link into 1&q…

Christmas Baking 2014

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Because I'm just getting back into the kitchen after hand surgery, my usual cookie baking bonanza wasn't going to happen this year.    We have a gathering on Christmas Eve of about 15 people and I bring a tray to pass.   I figured the best way to get a good variety was to focus on recipes that I could bake in 13x9 pans. 

Here is the finished tray, minus the Mounds Brownies, which stayed in their own pan:


First up, Honeybun Cake:
I prefer Betty Crocker cake mixes, and those have now been reduced to 15.25 oz.   My friend Carol shared a cake mix upsizer and it worked perfectly in this recipe.   Thank you to Serve at Once for sharing the recipe!



* Exported from MasterCook *

                              Honeybun Cake

  1                box  Yellow Cake Mix --  Betty Crocker 15.25 + 3oz Cake mix upsizer
  4              whole  Eggs
  1                cup light Sour Cream
     3/4          cups  Vegetable Oil
  1                cup  Light Brown Sugar
  2          teaspoons  Cinnamon
  …

Bacon Cheeseburger Pie

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There are just some nights when you shouldn't attempt a new recipe.   Last night was one of them, but I stubbornly clung to my planned menu.   .

My first problem- I couldn't find refrigerated hashbrowns, so I bought the frozen ones, a 30oz bag.   I eyeballed 20oz and defrosted them in the microwave.    Next issue- despite having a dozen pie pans, none of them are deep dish.   I went with a Pyrex.    When I put the crust into the oven, a major homework meltdown occurred and I was distracted and forgot to set the timer.   I am guessing that I shorted the time the crust should have baked by about 5 mins based on how long it took to cook through in the end.

In the filling, I used minced dried onion, which is the only way I can get it past the people I live with. A quick count made me realize that I couldn't use the eggs without compromising my Christmas baking, so I omitted them, along with the panko.   I meant to put Penzey's BBQ 3000 in for my 'steak seasoning', …

Baked Gingerbread Mini Donuts

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It's beginning to look a lot like DONUTS!  :)   Struggling a bit with my Christmas spirit this year.   I decided to play some cheerful music and bake a nice treat for breakfast.   I knew I wanted donuts, but I couldn't decide on a flavor- eggnog?  peppermint?  Nope, I wanted gingerbread and I had these on my donut Pinterest board from Pinch of Yum.

No changes to this one, except that I cannot remember adding the maple syrup.  The minute I stepped into the kitchen, I was swarmed with people needing answers to urgent questions that apparently I only possess the answer to.   I know I did, the lid was off and I had a measuring spoon with remnants in it, but whether I added it to the batter or the glaze, I have no idea.    

I let the kid go a little nuts with the sprinkles.   And they turned out delicious.  It's the holidays, and calories don't count til January, right?     Thank you so much to Lindsay at Pinch of Yum for the recipe, and for helping my Grinchy heart grow …

Apple Slab 'Pie'

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So happy to be getting back into the kitchen a little.  I've been recovering from hand surgery and though I was prepared with frozen and quick fix meals, I was unprepared for how much I'd actually miss cooking.   The guys have done a great job helping out and yesterday I decided they deserved a little treat.

I've accumulated four boxes of puff pastry and had a half dozen Cortland apples, and turnovers were on my mind.    I saw this Apple Slab Pie from Natasha's Kitchen on Pinterest, and it was easy to throw together.    I know my family and took Natasha's advice about doubling it up and making both sheets of puff pastry.   My apples were a bit closer to the edges than hers, so I didn't get as nice of a puff on the pastry, but it is still delicious.   The first one disappeared very, very quickly.     I packed slices in both of the guys lunches today and will be enjoying a piece myself shortly for breakfast.  What? It's fruit, so that = breakfast, right?  I a…

Cheesy Garlic Crescents

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I needed a side dish to go with pasta and had a can of Pillsbury Crescent Rolls kicking around the fridge.    I knew that I wanted to stuff them with cheese, and have seen lots of recipes around using a cheese stick.   I didn't have any on hand, so I used shredded mozzarella (part skim).    For the topping, I combined Penzey's Brady Street Cheese Sprinkle and melted butter.      They came together quickly, baked up quickly and were delicious.    I did have some cheese oozing issues, so next time I may give the cheese sticks a try.   






Cheesy Garlic Crescents

Cooking spray 1 tube refrigerated Pillsbury Crescent Rolls Shredded mozzarella or string cheese  1 to 1 1/2t Penzey's Brady Street Cheese Sprinkle* 3T melted butter
Preheat oven to 375º.   Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.   
Unroll the crescents and separate into triangles.   Place a string cheese stick or a large pinch of shredded mozzarella on each triangle and roll from the wide end.     Place on …

Jack O 'Lantern Cheeseburger Pie

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This was Jake's first year not Trick Or Treating, but I still wanted to make him something special.   I spent a week or so browsing Pinterest, and this recipe from Southern Living caught my eye.    Cheesy beef in a pie crust?  I'm in  :) 

I swapped the onion for dried onion and jarred garlic instead of fresh.   I also decided to add the mustard in with the beef mixture.  He's not a huge fan and if it was visible he might have balked.    I used a sharp shredded cheddar for my cheese.   Easy, fun and the grownups enjoyed it too! 




* Exported from MasterCook *

                     Jack O' Lantern Cheeseburger Pie



  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1              pound  ground beef
  2T             dried minced Onion
  2t               minced jarred garlic
     3/4      teaspoon  salt
     1/2      teaspoon  pepper
     1/4           cup  ketchup
  1           teaspoon  Worcestershire sauce
 …

Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake

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We're having unseasonably warm temps in New England the last few days.   I saw this recipe on Pinterest and despite that fact that it was going to heat up the house, I couldn't resist.  

Instead of boiling the brown sugar/butter mixture on the stove, I put both into the cake pan and into the oven while it preheated.   By time I'd mixed the batter ingredients and sliced the apples, it was ready to go.    I had 2 nice sized honeycrisp, and I sliced them about 1/4" thick and overlapped them in a pretty design. 

My cake baked in exactly 50 mins, and and some point I realized that I'd forgotten to grease or spray the sides of the pan.    I got lucky, I ran a knife around the edge and I only had minor sticking.  

I did not make the whipped topping, it was a fantastic cake without it.     Thank you to Alyssa at The Recipe Critic, this one is "I don't care if it's nearly 80 degrees out, I have to bake this cake" good.  



* Exported from MasterCook *

     …

Cider Bacon Chicken

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Fall is my favorite season.   Apple picking, cider, cozy sweaters, comfort food.  But this is New England, and today summer decided to make a comeback.    I had this meal on the menu and it turned out to be the perfect choice- it tasted like fall, but was quick and easy and didn't heat the house up.  

I buy thinly sliced chicken breasts and that saved me the trouble of pounding and plastic wrap.   I only had a 1/2 cup of chicken broth, so I upped the amount of cider to make up the difference.   I used minced dried onion and dried herbs, it's what I always have on hand.    For a side, I made couscous, replacing the recommended amount of water with cider, and finishing it with some thyme.  

This was a big winner here, even my picky kid ate it and asked for seconds.    Thank you Simply Scratch for this new family favorite!



* Exported from MasterCook *

                        Cider Bacon Chicken Dinner


5 thin sliced chicken breasts
                        Kosher Salt
          …

Lasagna Rolls

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This is very similar to a dish I made a while back.   I changed up some of the ingredients based on what I had on hand.   Measurements are estimated, I rarely measure shredded cheeses or sauce.  I used about 1/2 of a 26 oz jar.    Italian Herb Mix from Penzey's is my go to for this type of dish, you can certainly sub Italian seasoning or your favorite blend.   This also would be great with some browned ground beef or Italian sausage! 

A lot of the pictures I see out there show the majority of the roll uncovered by sauce.   I am always afraid of winding up with crunchy pasta that way.





I ended up making sure that all of the edges were going to be covered by the sauce, and the result was perfectly cooked lasagna rolls, but not as pretty to look at lasagna rolls  :) 








* Exported from MasterCook *

                              Lasagna Rolls


  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  9                     lasagna noodle…

Concord Grape Jelly

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We took my son out over the weekend to shoot his bow, and my husband stumbled across a treasure trove of Concord grapes.   Luckily we had a little cooler, and he filled it up pretty quickly.



I spent a while picking through, taking out the leaves, sticks, and critters, and then scurried to find a recipe.     I ended up going with this one from Sure Jell/Kraft.    It calls for a LOT of sugar, but  a good portion of the grapes we picked seemed to be underripe, so I wanted to make sure the resulting jelly was edible.

It was getting late, so I decided that I was going to get the grapes as far as juice, and then I'd complete the jam when I had some more time.      I added them to a large stockpot along with the water, mashing them with a potato masher.     It didn't take long for them to give up their juice, but I had no cheesecloth or jelly bag to strain them through.    I ended up using a very fine mesh colander, which worked, and is a total pain to clean.      I let the juice coo…

Tiramisu Treasure Cookies

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This one is a blast from the past!   I submitted these as my entry in 2007 to the Derryfest Cookie contest.   I was narrowly beat by a very common cookie, and when I realized how much 'politics' was involved in the judging, I stopped entering.   

I pouted about it for a while, and then I lost the recipe when my MasterCook program crashed.  The cookie came up in conversation today, and I put a call out on Facebook to see if anyone had saved a copy of the recipe, and my friend Lisa still had it!    The pictures aren't great, these were from a trial run and I went real light on the filling.       Thank you so much Lisa, I can't wait to make these again   :)




* Exported from MasterCook *

                        Tiramisu Treasure Cookies


  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1              stick  butter -- softened
     1/2             c  powdered sugar
  1              large  egg -- beaten
     1/…

Quadruple Chocolate Soft Fudgy Pudding Cookies

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I have been craving chocolate for a week, but we had a sudden surge in temperatures that killed any desire I had to bake.   Finally, the temps today were nice and I assembled my ingredients to make these amazing looking cookies.   FOUR kinds of chocolate?  Oh yeah, I'm in.    I doubled the recipe, cookies disappear fast around here and 17 didn't seem like a lot.     I ended up using Hershey's Special Dark chips for the dark chocolate and I didn't chop them.    I used a cookie scoop to keep them all uniform, and I flattened them with the glass after I pulled them from the oven.

So deliciously, chocolatey good.  Both myself and my husband both think they'd be fantastic as an ice cream sandwich with some vanilla bean ice cream.    Thank you so much to Averie for satisfying my chocolate craving! 




* Exported from MasterCook *

              Quadruple Chocolate Soft Fudgy Pudding Cookies


  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --…

One pot Pizza Pasta Bake

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Tim keeps craving pasta, I keep craving pizza and I ran across this recipe from Damn Delicious that was going to cover both of those cravings perfectly.     My husband doesn't eat breakfast and barely eats lunch, so I wanted to make sure that dinner was sufficiently hearty enough for him.    I used the entire package of Johnsonville Sweet Italian Sausage (19oz).   To account for the increased volume in the pan, I also added a second can of tomato sauce.   This led to increasing the spices, and I always toss in a pinch of brown sugar with any red sauce.    Life is too short to measure cheese, I just put a nice handful over the top.    After I took the dish out from underneath the broiler, I gave it a sprinkle of Penzey's Italian Herb Mix and on my own serving I used some crushed red pepper flakes.

This is easy, filling and my changes made for plenty of leftovers.   Damn Delicious is absolutely the right name for her blog and most definitely this dish.     Thank you so much Chun…

Chinese Orange Chicken

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At the moment, chicken seems to be the most affordable protein out there.   We've always eaten a lot of it, but now it can be as much as 2x a week.  Unfortunately, Jake's school has seemed to come to the same conclusion, and it's on the menu there 2 to 3x a week also.  I've got zillions of chicken recipes saved, and when I went looking for a fried Chinese style dish, this one popped right up. 

Few minor changes to the ingredients- dried onions for the fresh, fresh ginger for the dried.    My orange juice had been squeezed a while back and frozen in ice cube trays, and the zest was long gone, used in another dish.   I used Penzey's dried zest instead.

I made a critical error with this, trying to save myself time-  I dipped all the chicken in the egg, then added it to a resealable bag with the cornstarch and gave it a shake.    The problem was, as the chicken sat waiting it's turn in the hot oil, the pieces all clumped together and the egg seeped through.    I h…

Cheeseburger Quesadillas

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Meals have been a challenge since my son started back to school.   I think we've finally gotten into a groove now, going over the school lunch menu and my home menu and making sure there is some variety.    This week's menu had been planned, but wasn't quite right when my friend Sue shared she'd be making these Cheeseburger Quesadillas for dinner.     That was my missing piece!  

A few tweaks.    I had a little over a pound of ground beef.    The guys will not eat real chopped onion, so I used Penzey's dried and added to the beef while it cooked.    The recipe doesn't say to drain off the grease, but I did since mine had a pretty high fat content (85/15).     I used real bacon, microwaved til crisp.  

When the hamburger mixture was complete, it was a lot.   I ended up doing two large quesadillas, and plan on freezing the leftovers for a quick lunch or snack.     I did not bake mine in the oven, I heated 2 griddle pans and lightly buttered them.    I browned th…