Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Maple Pepper Bacon, Lettuce & Tomato Sandwich and Lemon Herb Roasted Potatoes

I wanted a simple side dish to have alongside a BLT.   I had a bag of honeygold potatoes that I bought without a purpose, so I set about finding one on my Pinterest boards.     This recipe from Rock Recipes was perfect.

For the BLT, I sprinkled some locally made Maple Pepper onto center cut bacon and cooked it to crispy in my Cuisinart Griddler.    Serve on toasted Texas Toast bread, with lettuce and on the vine tomatoes, thinkly sliced.

Lemon Herb Roasted Potatoes

1/2 bag honeygold potatoes (about 8)
1/8c olive oil
1/4 t kosher salt
1/4 t cracked black pepper
1/2t each rosemary, thyme and oregano
Zest from one lemon, juice from one half

Heat your oven to 375, with the baking dish you'll be using inside to heat up.

I started the potatoes off in the microwave,  piercing them all over with a fork.   I cooked them for about 7 minutes, then let them cool slightly before quartering them.    I tossed them with the lemon juice and let them sit while I combined the salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme, oregano, lemon zest and olive oil.  

Toss the potatoes with the oil mixture, coating evenly.     Pour into your preheated pan.    Shake the pan after about 10 mins to make sure they aren't sticking.   Continue to roast them for about 40 minutes more, turning every 20 mins so that all sides get golden brown. 

Adapted from  http://www.rockrecipes.com/lemon-herb-roasted-potatoes/

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Baked Cheddar Dijon Chicken Tenders

It never fails.   Whenever I stock up on something, the guys suddenly tire of it.   I had managed to accumulate several boxes of Cheez-Its and I got tired of moving them around the cabinet.   This recipe was just the thing to use some up.  I read the recipe, and thought 'piece of cake!' and proceeded to completely miss the flour step.    No worries.   They were crisp and delicious and the coating seemed to stay put ok.
Huge hit with the kid, he ate 4.    He liked his drizzled with a little honey, I went with honey mustard.     Thanks so much to Kelly at Just a Taste for this fantastic way to reduce my stockpile of Cheez-Its  :)

* Exported from MasterCook *

                   Baked Cheddar Dijon Chicken Tenders

  2        Tablespoons  olive oil
  1 box Cheez-Its, crushed with a rolling pin or pulsed in food processor
1 heaping teaspoon paprika
2 1/4         pounds  uncooked chicken tenders
 4              large  eggs
 2T         Dijon mustard

Heat oven to 475, moving rack to the lower third of the oven.  Brush a foil lined half sheet pan with the olive oil.

Combine crushed Cheez-Its and paprika in a large cake pan.   Beat eggs with dijon in another cake pan.   Dip the chicken pieces into the egg mixture, let drain slightly and then dredge into the Cheez-It mixture.   Press lightly to make sure it is completely coated.    Lay on prepared sheet in a single layer. 

Bake for 8 minutes, then flip carefully.   Bake 7 to 8 minutes more, or until crispy and cooked through.  


Thursday, March 19, 2015

Crescent Cheeseburger Pie

I've made a couple versions of Cheeseburger Pie this year.   I pulled ground beef out yesterday, but a quick check of my freezer showed the pie crust I thought I had was gone.   I had a tube of crescent rolls in the fridge, so I went with those.  

Brown 1lb ground beef with 1T minced dried onion, then drain.   Add salt, pepper (to taste), 1/4c ketchup, 2t mustard and 1/4c shredded cheddar cheese and give it a stir.   Pour into a greased pie plate, and top it with another 1/2c shredded cheddar.   Separate the crescents and lay them around the pie plate, making sure the whole surface is covered.   Roll the edge over and crimp with fingers to make a crust.   Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake according to crescent directions (mine took about 10 minutes at 375ยบ).

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Chocolate Chip Banana Mini Muffins

I've got a stockpile of frozen bananas and a kid who loves mini muffins.   This recipe was easy to throw together and will make perfect treats for his lunch box.    Thank you to Jenn at Princess Pinky Girl for sharing the recipe!

* Exported from MasterCook *

                    Chocolate Chip Banana Mini Muffins

  1                cup  sugar
1 stick  butter (melted)
  2                     eggs
  3       bananas, mashed (I used ones I'd frozen)
  1         tablespoon  lemon juice
  2               cups  flour
  1               tbsp  baking powder
     1/2      teaspoon  salt
     1/2             c  mini chocolate chips -- plus more to sprinkle on top, if desired

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together melted butter and sugar.   Add in eggs.   Stir in mashed bananas and lemon juice. Combine flour, baking powder and salt, and stir into banana mixture.   Add chocolate chips.

Spray mini muffin tins ( I used Pampered Chef).  Using a small cookie scoop, fill tins about 3/4 full.   Top each muffin with a few additional chips, if desired.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.   The tops should not look wet and the sides will be golden brown.   Let cool slightly, remove and cool completely on racks. 


Chicken Picatta Pasta

I've mentioned it before- I live with picky people.   And sometimes I feel absolutely terrible about how I have to mangle a recipe to get my family to eat it.   This is one of those recipes.    The first thing to go was the capers.   They won't touch them.    Next to go is any discernible onion- instead of the diced red, which I would love, I used Penzey's dried minced onion.     Fresh herbs have been rejected- my son calls them "lawn mowings".   Sigh.   

I apologize to Sommer for what I had to do to her lovely recipe.  That being said, he ate two helpings of what I put on the table.  My husband is at work, but I know that he'll love it later too.    The sun went away as soon as I put it on the table, and since Jake was eager to eat I didn't spend a lot of time on the pictures.    Go check out the ones at A Spicy Perspective, as well as her other awesome recipes.  

* Exported from MasterCook *

                          Chicken Picatta Pasta

1/2 box angel hair pasta
  1  1/2            lb.  chicken tenders -- in bite size pieces
      Salt and Pepper (to taste)
   4                Tb.  flour -- divided
  1              stick  butter
  3                Tb.  olive oil
  2             cloves  garlic -- minced, jarred
 1 tablespoon Penzey's Minced dried onion
1            teaspoon dried rosemary
     1/3           cup  fresh lemon juice
     3/4           cup  chicken broth (reduced sodium)
    1T         dried parsley

Fill pasta pot with water and bring to a boil.   Cut chicken into bite size pieces.   Heat butter and oil in a large skillet with high sides over medium heat.   Combine 2T flour, salt and pepper in a large ziploc.   Add chicken and shake to coat thoroughly.   Cook pasta according to package directions.

When butter is completely melted, carefully add the chicken and cook until golden brown on both sides (about 2 to 3 mins per side).   Use a slotted spoon to remove chicken to a paper towel lined plate.

Combine broth, rosemary, garlic, and onion.   Pour into skillet.   Whisk 2T flour into lemon juice and then add to the skillet.   Whisk to get all the browned bits off the bottom and let thicken slightly.   Add drained pasta and chicken to the simmering sauce and sprinkle with 2t parsley.    Move to serving dish and top with remaining parsley.

Adapted from  "http://www.aspicyperspective.com/2013/07/chicken-picatta-pasta.html"

Linked to- Weekend Potluck #162

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Taco Bell Crunchwrap Supreme Copycat

I've been trying to clean out my cabinets/pantry for a while now.    I pulled ground beef from the freezer yesterday, and when I checked to see if I had taco seasoning, I found an Old El Paso Hard and Soft Taco dinner kit that had been pushed to the back.    I remembered pinning something that used a hard and soft taco and went to find it.   As usual, I had to deal with my picky people. I am the only one that will eat sour cream, lettuce or tomato, so I set about making myself one of these copycats.

I broke open the kit and realized my mistake, taco shells and tostada shells are not the same  :)  No problem, I just broke the taco shell in half so it lay flat.    Then my second mistake- I'd forgotten the can of nacho cheese.     I hedged my bets and used shredded Mexican cheese blend.     I used a burrito size tortilla for the base, laid down a nice amount of cheese.   Topped it with the taco meat, then the broken shell.   Sour cream, lettuce, tomato.   I topped it with one of small soft tortillas from the dinner kit and folded it according to the directions.    To cook them, I used my Cuisinart Griddler (I know, I need a 12 step program).    I brushed the grates with some butter, threw it in and let it do its thing til it was crispy and golden.

Mine doesn't look like the pictures, but it was delicious.    Thank you so much to Holly at Life in the Lofthouse for sharing the recipe!

(As for the rest of the dinner kit?   I laid out the soft tortillas, added a good amount of shredded cheese and then microwaved them until it was melted.  I pressed it around a hard shell to make them double layered.  Everyone was happy! ) 

* Exported from MasterCook *

                  Taco Bell Crunchwrap Supreme (Copycat)

  1                 lb  ground beef
  1             packet  taco seasoning mix
1  generous cup shredded Mexican cheese blend
 burrito-size flour tortillas
Old El Paso Hard and Soft Taco dinner kit
  1                cup  sour cream
shredded lettuce
diced tomato
  1                cup  shredded Mexican cheese blend
                        Butter to coat the cooking surface (I used a Cuisinart Griddler)

Heat a skillet over medium high heat.   Break up and brown the ground beef until it's no longer pink, then drain.   Add the seasoning and water and cook according to the package instructions.

Place burrito size flour tortillas on a flat surface.  Sprinkle a layer of shredded Mexican cheese in the center.  Add taco meat, about 1/2 cup.    Break hard taco shell in half so it lays flat over the meat.    Top with a layer of sour cream, lettuce and tomato.   Sprinkle with cheese.   Place a soft taco from the kit on top of the cheese.

Fold the burrito sized tortilla up towards the center.   Continue all the way around, pressing lightly.     Preheat the griddle or press.   Brush the surface with butter.    Add wraps and cook until crispy and golden brown. 


Linked to Weekend Potluck

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Barbecue Chicken bread with bacon, red onions and cheddar

Laid back sunday here.  Before my surgery, I threw some chicken and barbecue sauce in the crockpot, let it cook for 6 hours, then shredded it.   It got a nice gorgeous dark color on it.   I cooled it, froze it in ziploc bags and promptly forgot about it.   I stumbled across it in the freezer earlier this week and thought that I would use it in this recipe.

1)  Go see Buns In My Oven's pics.   Right now.   They are far superior to mine.   I cannot photograph brown foods, and I am far too heavy handed with the cheese for good pictures.   In a vain attempt to make it a pretty final picture I had reserved some of the chopped onion and bacon for garnish.  

2) This can be made on anything.   I forgot to buy Italian bread, so I used long sub rolls.   It would be great on bulky rolls, pizza crust, pita bread, naan.   

3) I had no reserved sauce to drizzle over the top, next time I'll make sure I do, just for that extra added oomph.

Huge thanks to Karly at Buns in My Oven for this recipe!   Seriously, go look at her pictures.    :)

* Exported from MasterCook *

                          Barbecue Chicken Bread

2 Italian sub rolls, sliced longways
  1 1/2           cups  shredded cooked chicken
  1                cup  your favorite barbecue sauce -- plus more for drizzling (I used Sweet Baby Rays)
     1/2           cup  shredded cheddar cheese (I guesstimated, I never measure cheese)
  4             slices  center cut bacon -- cooked and chopped (I did mine in the Cuisinart Griddler)
     1/4           cup  diced red onion

Heat the oven to 350*  Line a baking sheet with foil.   Lay out bread halves on sheet.    Heat the chicken and sauce together until heated through and well coated.    Spoon onto the bread halves.   Sprinkle with bacon, chopped onion (reserve some for garnish if desired) and cheddar cheese.   Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until the cheese is bubbly and melted.    Garnish with reserved items. 

Slice and serve with the additional barbecue sauce for drizzling or dipping.  

Source  "http://www.bunsinmyoven.com/2013/05/13/barbecue-chicken-bread/"

Monday, March 2, 2015

Blueberry muffin waffles

Breakfast for dinner was the request for tonight, and I want to start working my way through my stockpile of frozen blueberries.    This recipe looked fantastic, so I preheated my Presto Flip Side Belgian Waffle maker while I mixed up the batter.    The first thing that should have tipped me off what a disaster was coming was the thickness of the batter.   I don't know if my flour has settled or maybe my egg was undersized, but it was thick.    Also, due to the mechanics of my iron, it's very hard to brush both sides with butter, because it doesn't open flat.   I buttered one side, and sprayed the other with cooking spray, and hoped for the best.  

The result?  The waffles stuck like mad.   The first one out came out in pieces, delicious, blueberry flavored pieces.   My son didn't care, saved him the trouble of cutting it up.   :)   For the second waffle, I tried to get more butter into the grooves of the iron, and I got about half of mine out in one piece.      He had his with a little vanilla ice cream, and I had mine the traditional way with butter and syrup.     I don't think I'd make them again with my current iron, but with a different brand I'm sure they'd be just fine.    Thanks so much to Deborah at Taste and Tell for the recipe!

* Exported from MasterCook *

                         Blueberry Muffin Waffles

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1 1/2           cups  flour
     3/4           cup  sugar
     1/2      teaspoon  salt
  2          teaspoons  baking powder
     1/3           cup  vegetable oil
  1                     egg
     2/3           cup  milk
  1                cup  unthawed frozen blueberries
                        Melted butter/cooking spray -- for the waffle iron

Preheat waffle iron.

Combine the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.   Create a well in the center of the flour mixture and add the wet ingredients.    Stir, but only until just combined.   Fold in blueberries.

Brush iron with butter and/or spray with cooking spray.   Add batter to the iron and cook according to your model's instructions.   


Hot Mint Cocoa Toddy

Sunday was one of those days I just couldn't get warm.   It was also the last day of our winter break, so I thought nice spiked cocoa would be just the thing.    I found this on HamptonRoadsHappy Hour.com.  

I like dark hot cocoa, so I went with that for mine and regular for Tim's.   I didn't use the cinnamon stick, the ones I have are ancient.    I garnished with mini chocolate chips instead of the grated chocolate.    It made for a nice warm, relaxing afternoon   :)

* Exported from MasterCook *

             Hot Mint Cocoa Toddy

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1                oz.  Kahlua
  1                oz.  Peppermint Schnapps
                        Cocoa mix (enough to make 6 oz.)
  6                oz. hot water

Combine water, cocoa  mix, kahlua and Peppermint Schnapps in your favorite mug.  Garnish with mini marshmallows and mini chocolate chips.