Saturday, September 27, 2008
ONE OF THE OTHER THINGS I'M MAKING FOR THE COUSIN'S REUNION THIS WEEKEND, AND THAT I LOVE TO FIX BUT ONLY DO IT IF IT'S FOR A CROWD, IS TRASH BAG SNACK MIX.
TRASH BAG SNACK MIX
GET ROUGHLY SEVEN BOXES OR BAGS OF YOUR FAVORITE CRACKERS. I USUALLY USE THE WHITE CHEDDAR CHEEZITS, OYSTER CRACKERS, RITZ CHIPS, SUN CHIPS, THERE ARE SEVERAL OTHERS THAT ARE LIKE STICKS, CAN'T THINK OF THE NAMES OF THOSE BUT YOU'LL KNOW WHAT I MEAN. I'VE HAD IT WITH PRETZELS BUT I PREFER IT WITHOUT.
TAKE TWO TRASHBAGS, KITCHEN SIZE, AND DOUBLE BAG ONE INTO THE OTHER AND POUR ALL OF THE CRACKERS INTO THE BAG. TAKE ABOUT A CUP AND A HALF OF ORVILLE REDENBACHER'S BUTTER FLAVORED POPCORN OIL, MIX INTO THE OIL 1 TBSP. OF GARLIC SALT AND 1 TBSP. OF ONION POWDER. WHEN YOU'VE GOT THAT GOOD AND STIRRED UP POUR IT INTO THE BAG AND SHAKE.
OVER ABOUT A THREE HOUR PERIOD SHAKE, TOSS, AND TURN THE BAG ABOUT EVERY HALF HOUR. I SCOOP THEM OUT INTO GALLON ZIP LOCK BAGS, USUALLY RIGHT AT THREE GALLONS. SCRUMPDILLYICIOUS!!!!!
Friday, September 26, 2008
GRANDMA ASH'S BROWNIES
MY SISTER-IN-LAW GAVE ME THE RECIPE PROBABLY 35 YEARS AGO AND MADE ME PROMISE THAT I'D NEVER LET ANYBODY KNOW WHERE I GOT IT, AT LEAST NOT WHILE GRANDMA GLADYS, HER GRANDMOTHER-IN-LAW, WAS ALIVE. SAD TO SAY, SHE'S GONE. I'M GOING TO SHARE THE RECIPE WITH YOU AND LET YOU KNOW I FOUND ONE ALMOST EXACTLY LIKE IT IN A PAULA DEEN COOKBOOK. WONDER WHO GAVE PAULA DEEN GRANDMA'S BROWNIE RECIPE?!? YOU'VE HEARD OF DEATH BY CHOCOLATE? GET READY, THIS IS A TRUE CHOCOLATE OVERLOAD:
1 STICK BUTTER, ROOM TEMP
1 CUP SUGAR
16 OZ. CAN HERSHEY'S CHOCOLATE SYRUP
1 CUP FLOUR
CREAM THE BUTTER AND SUGAR, ADD THE EGGS UNTIL WELL BLENDED. STIR IN THE FLOUR AND THE HERSHEY'S SYRUP. BAKE 25 MINUTES IN A 9 X 13 PAN, GREASED, AT 350.
AS SOON AS YOU TAKE THEM OUT OF THE OVEN START TO MAKE THE FROSTING:
6 TBSP. BUTTER
1/3 CUP MILK
1 1/2 CUP SUGAR
1 CUP SEMI SWEET CHOCOLATE CHIPS
PUT THE BUTTER, MILK AND SUGAR IN A HEAVY SAUCEPAN OVER MEDIUM HEAT. STIR AND COOK TILL BOILING AND BOIL FOR ONE MINUTE. REMOVE FROM HEAT. STIR IN CHOCOLATE CHIPS UNTIL MELTED AND WELL BLENDED AND POUR OVER BROWNIES.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
ON SATURDAY MORNING OF THE REUNION WE'RE HAVING A BREAKFAST CASSEROLE THAT IS AMAZING! IT'S CALLED EASTER BREAKFAST CASSEROLE. ALSO, I'VE MADE EIGHT LOAVES OF FRUIT BREADS AND HAVE THEM IN THE FREEZER, PUMPKIN, IRISH SODA BREAD WITH CRANBERRIES, GINGERBREAD, AND OATMEAL AND APPLE BREAD (2 LOAVES EACH). WILL PROBABLY DO SOME BISCUITS ALSO.
EASTER BREAKFAST CASSEROLE
2# BACON CHOPPED AND COOKED
CHOPPED ONION - AS MUCH AS YOU LIKE
CHOPPED GREEN PEPPER - AS MUCH AS YOU LIKE
6 CUPS SHREDDED CHEDDAR CHEESE
4 CUPS MILK
2# FROZEN HASH BROWNS THAWED
USE THE CHUNK HASH BROWNS NOT THE SHREDS. THIS IS A DOUBLE RECIPE, PROBABLY TWO 9 X 13 PANS. BEAT EGGS AND MILK, MIX IN ALL INGREDIENTS. POUR IN GREASED PANS, COVER AND COOK 45 MINUTES THEN UNCOVER AND BAKE 30 MINUTES. OH YEAH, AT 350.
THIS IS REALLY, REALLY GOOD STUFF MAYNARD!!!
NOW, SOME OF THE OTHER THINGS I HAVE IN MY FREEZER ARE ALL OF THE COOKED BURGER FOR THE CHILI AND SOUP, SIX POUNDS. THE TWO POUNDS OF COOKED BACON ARE IN THERE. I HAVE TWO BATCHES OF CORN BREAD FROZEN AND A CHOPPED APPLE WITH DATES AND WALNUTS CAKE AND SOME BROWNIES. NEXT POST WILL BE THE RECIPE FOR THESE FAMOUS BROWNIES.
---The fruit breads my mom listed above are all awesome, I'll see if I can talk her into doing another guest series of her fruit breads, I'm sure she'll be making them again for Thanksgiving. I'm liking this Guest Blogger thing more and more, less work for me, but more yummy food for me to try!
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
HELLOOOO BLOGGERS! THIS IS THIS GIRL'S MOM. SHE HAS BEEN VERY BUSY AT WORK SO I AM GOING TO TELL YOU ALL ABOUT MY PREPARATIONS FOR A BIG FAMILY REUNION THIS WEEKEND AND THE COOKING THAT HAS BEEN GOING ON FOR SEVERAL WEEKS IN PREPARATION.
WE ARE HAVING A 'COUSIN REUNION' AT GRAND LAKE, OKLAHOMA. WE'RE EXPECTING AROUND 24 PEOPLE, SOME STARTING TO COME IN ON FRIDAY. THE PROBLEM IS THE TWO HOSTESSES, MYSELF AND MY COUSIN JAN, WHO I SOMETIMES REFER TO AS THE 'LITTLE GENERAL' BECAUSE OF HER ORGANIZATIONAL SKILLS, LIVE ABOUT FOUR HOURS FROM THE LAKE. WE COULD HAVE OTHERS BRING THINGS BUT MOST OF THEM ARE COMING FROM FURTHER THAN THAT, PHILADELPHIA, ST. LOUIS, KANSAS CITY, WICHITA. SO TO TRY TO MAKE THIS EASY ON THE LONG DISTANCE TRAVELERS WE DECIDED TO PROVIDE MOST OF THE FOOD.
FRIDAY EVENING WE ARE PLANNING CHILI AND A QUICK ITALIAN SOUP. CHILI IS CHILI, MINE IS PRETTY GOOD BUT I WON'T BORE YOU WITH THE DETAILS. NOW, THE QUICK ITALIAN SOUP I'M EXCITED ABOUT:
2# LEAN GROUND HAMBURGER BROWNED
CHOPPED ONION - AS MUCH AS YOU LIKE
10 CUPS HOT WATER
2 BOXES HAMBURGER HELPER LASAGNA MIX
2 CANS DICED TOMATOES WITH JUICE
2 CANS WHOLE KERNEL CORN - DRAINED
MIX THE HAMBURGER, ONION, 10 CUPS OF HOT WATER AND THE SPICE PACKETS FROM THE H.H. AND BRING TO A BOIL. LOWER HEAT AND SIMMER 10 MINUTES. ADD THE TOMATOES AND THE CORN, SIMMER 10 MINUTES. ADD THE NOODLES FROM THE H.H. AND SIMMER 10 MINUTES.
THIS IS A DOUBLE RECIPE. I'VE MADE IT SEVERAL TIMES AND I USUALLY ADD ABOUT A HALF A PALM FULL OF GOOD LARGE CUT DRIED BELL PEPPER PIECES IN WITH THE WATER.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Saturday, September 6, 2008
West 95 and I decided that it's time for us to have some killer appetizers in pocket so we are ready when the party bug hits us. Our plan is to make yummy party appetizer recipes a couple times a month so we know how they taste, how long it takes to prepare them, if they freeze well, and how much they cost to make (that's an important one if you're having a big gathering). The first recipe we decided to try was quiche. They were supposed to be mini, but neither of us owns a mini muffin pan, so they were muffin sized. Even so, they were the perfect size and consistency to be eaten without a fork, or even without a plate, if you party with heathens like we do.
Mini Sausage Quiche
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed and unfolded
1/2 pound bulk pork country sausage, hot or mild
1/4 cup finely minced sweet onion
1/4 cup finely diced sweet red bell pepper
1 clove finely minced garlic
4 ounces cream cheese (1/2 large block), at room temperature
1/8 tsp dry mustard powder
1/4 tsp ground sage
1/4 tsp ground thyme
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt
Dash of hot sauce, to taste
Dash Worcestershire sauce
Shredded Gruyere or Swiss cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and grease a mini-muffin pan. (I used a regular sized muffin pan)
Lightly flour your workspace and using a rolling pin, roll out the puff pastry to a 12" x 14" sheet. It should be about 1/8" thick. Use a biscuit cutter to cut out 24 rounds. (I actually preferred the quiches that only had crust on the bottom as opposed to crust going up each side. Use a smaller circle cutter and experiment with the amount of crust to use)
Saute sausage, onion, red bell pepper and garlic until meat is no longer pink, breaking the sausage into small pieces as it cooks. Drain the fat and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature. Place 1 tbsp of the mixture in the bottom of each cup.
Blend the cream cheese, dry mustard, sage, thyme, onion powder, salt, hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce until smooth, then beat in eggs, one at a time, until just incorporated. Spoon the egg mixture into the cups and sprinkle with the shredded cheese.
Bake 10 minutes until golden, serve warm.
The recipe also says these can be frozen and reheated in a 350 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes, and I know I told you this experiment was meant to test the freezing quotient of the dish, but soon after these honies came out of the oven, five ravenous people devoured them, rendering me incapable of that portion of the project. We'll have to take about.com's word for it.
Thursday, September 4, 2008
1 1/2# burger
1 onion chopped
1 16 oz can kidney beans with liquid
1 16 oz can chili beans
1 small bag frozen corn
1 can Rotel
1 16 oz can diced tomatoes
1 4oz can green chiles
1 pkg. Ranch Dressing mix
1 pkg. taco seasoning
1 1/2 c. water
Brown beef and saute onion - drain, stir in remaining ingredients. Simmer @ least two hours.
Serve with whatever garnishes float your boat.
P.S. This soup tastes even better on day 2. I like to mix it up by using the leftovers to make some kickin' nachos. Just drain the soup, put over a bunch of chips and ta da, taco soup with chips!
I made a meal for my husband and his parents last Sunday and wanted to try something new for a sweet finish. I saw these cookies on Cakespy and fell in love. To make them right I bought myself a new little kitchen tool at Target, a small cookie scoop. Little gadgets like this are so fun to me! Plus, they made these yummies the perfect round shape I wanted.
Courtesy of Cakespy:
For the Cookies:
1/2 c. soft butter
3/4 c. sifted confectioners sugar
1 Tbsp. vanilla
food coloring if desired
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/8 tsp. salt
Fillings: I made mine with marischino cherries which I liked because of the pink cookies. Next time I'm going to try to make a great purple color so who knows what filling I'll try.
For the Icing:
Mix 1 cup sifted confectioners' sugar, 2 tbsp cream, 1 tsp vanilla, and food coloring (if desired).
Heat oven to 350.
Mix butter, sugar, vanilla and food coloring, thoroughly. Sift flour with the salt and add to the sugar mixture. If dough is dry, add 1 to 2 Tbsp. cream. Using a small cookie scoop, partially fill with dough, add your filling, then finish with more cookie dough. Place 1" apart on un-greased cookie sheet. Bake 12 to 15 minutes, then cool on a cooling rack. Dip the tops of the cookies in frosting and decorate.
Makes 20-25 cookies.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
And there ya go, Tall Dark and Handsome, the man of few words regarding my kitchen prowess besides, Good, Hungry and Ehhh, literally made my heart swoop with one sentence. And he was right, they DID look like something that an Italian restaurant would have on it's menu. Professional. Delicious. And they look like more effort than they actually required. What cook doesn't like that??
Chicken Parmigiana Rolls:
And just so you don't worry about Gracie and Sadi, they had their treat while we had ours. But since they are always so jealous of their treats, they ate in the other room. Like I'd want that nasty thing.
Makes about 8 servings.
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
Getting ready: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter and 8 ½ x 4 ½ x 2 ½ inch loaf pan, dust the inside with flour and tap out the excess. Place the pan on an insulated baking sheet or on two regular baking sheets stacked on top of the other.
Pour a little less than half the batter into the bowl with the melted chocolate and stir to blend. Drop alternating spoonfuls of both batters into the prepared pan, then, using a table knife, swirl the batters together, taking care not to overdo it.
Bake for 1 hour and 20 to 30 minutes, or until a knife inserted deep into the center of the cake comes out clean. Check after 30 minutes and if the cake starts to brown too much, cover it loosely with a foil tent. Transfer the cake to a cooling rack and let it rest for about 15 minutes before unmolding, then cool the cake to room temperature right side up on the rack.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Here's what to do if you want to do it yourself:
1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating. (I can't figure out how to 'cross out' in Blogger, so mine will contain the comment NO WAY.
The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare (does carpaccio count?)
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
10. Baba ghanoush
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn or head cheese - NO WAY
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper - NO WAY, tongue blisters hold no appeal for me.
27. Dulce de leche
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam Chowder in Soudough Bowl
33. Salted lassi
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted Cream Tea
38. Vodka Jelly/Jell-O - ah college...
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects - I could see trying this if they were gnats covered in chocolate.
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth $120 or more
46. Fugu - seriously, why?
47. Chicken tikka masala
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
60. Carob chips
63. kaolin - wikipedia says this is clay. I don't know why anyone would eat it. Does it aid digestion?
65. Durian - NO WAY. I have a friend whose actually seen (and smelled) a durian before. The woman carrying it got kicked of the Singaporian bus.
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake - speaking of, the fair's right around the corner...
68. Haggis - NO WAY
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings or andouillette
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost or brunost
75. Roadkill - NO WAY...this one's gotta be a joke
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
79. Lapsang Souchong
81. Tom Yum
82. Eggs Benedict
84. 3 Michelin Star Tasting Menu - birthday gift ideas for me, dear husband.
85. Kobe beef
89. Horse - NO WAY. I reject this on moral grounds.
90. Criollo chocolate
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake (I've had rattlesnake, fresh from the prairie)
After going through this list, I realized I'm not as cultured as I thought I was. Thank you, Wikipedia, for defining at least 20 items on this list.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Monday, August 18, 2008
2 cups yogurt
2 or 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
Fresh parsley, chopped fine
Juice of half a lemon
Chicken pieces, whatever ya got, I used tenders
Lightly butter a large baking dish, set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Start by mixing the yogurt, garlic, parsley and lemon juice in a large bowl. Rinse your chicken and season with a little salt and pepper. Now the fun starts, toss the chicken, one piece at a time, into the yogurt mixture and turn to coat. Take out and toss the yogurty chicken into the bread crumbs, evenly coating, and place in the baking dish. Place a small pat of butter on each piece of chicken. I considered skipping this step but I'm glad I didn't. It made the bread crumbs particularly yummy. Put the dish in the oven and bake at 350 degrees for an hour. Let it sit a minute before you serve it to let everything set. Be prepared for a stampede because when it's baking, the garlic literally wafts through your house, calling every hungry tummy in a block radius to check out what's for dinner.
1 (15 1/4-ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 (14 3/4-ounce) can cream-style corn
1 (8-ounce) package corn muffin mix (I used Jiffy)
1 cup sour cream (I used fat free)
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
1 to 1 1/2 cups shredded cheese (I used 2% shredded cheddar)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a large bowl, stir together the two cans of corn, corn muffin mix, sour cream, and melted butter. Pour into a greased 9-by-13-inch casserole dish. Bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from oven and top with cheddar. Return to oven for 5 to 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Let stand for at least 5 minutes to allow it to set and then serve warm.
Evidently I have problems following directions, I made mine in an 8x8 casserole dish and it turned out wonderful, but I did have to bake it an extra 5-7 minutes. After dinner, Sous Chef Gracie helped with the dishes. Don't you appreciate a little help in the kitchen?
Sunday, August 10, 2008
1 package yeast (fast rising or regular)
1 cup warm water
1 T. oil
1 T. sugar
3 cups flour
Salt (as I type this, I realize I forgot this ingredient. Don't be like me. Use salt)
Combine warm water and yeast until dissolved. Add egg, oil, sugar and stir. Start by adding two cups flour. Mix well. Add additional flour until it's a nice dough consistency. (Don't ask me to define 'nice' dough consistency, I have no answer. I guess it just 'looks right') Put in an oiled bowl, cover with a cloth and allow to double in size, about half an hour. (I took my aunt's advice and allowed my oven to heat to about 200 degrees, then shut it off. I placed my dough in there to rise which worked well.)
For the filling:
1 pound hamburger, browned and seasoned, drained
1/2 onion, chopped and sauted
1 8oz. bag cheddar cheese
5 slices bacon, browned and crumbled
Mix all ingredients. Easy, huh?!
When dough has finished rising, lightly flour your workspace and rolling pin. Pull off a little chunk of dough and roll into a nice round shape. Put about a cup of the filling on the dough circle (mine were more of ellipses) and seal the edges to make a little pocket. Tip: don't allow any filling to touch the edges of the dough, it's darn near impossible to seal them shut if you do. Place the pockets sealed side down on a greased cookie sheet. You can brush on an egg wash if you'd like. Bake at 350 for about 35 minutes, until the bread is nice and browned.
This recipe made about seven bierocks. These four were the prettiest. My other three were not so pretty. This is gonna take practice. I served these little jewels with some ketchup and mustard. Next time, I might put a little mayo on there too.
I was really expecting this recipe to take a lot of toil. It didn't, it was really pretty easy. I dirtied lots of dishes in the process, but that's okay. Two dishwasher loads instead of one, no big deal.
Monday, August 4, 2008
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Start by frying up some bacon. Remove and place on a paper towel. Drain all but a little of the grease from the pan and saute the onion. When soft, also place on a paper towel (see a pattern here?).
Fry an egg in the bacon/onion grease. My husband prefers his yolks broken so there aren't any runny yellow surprises, and I aim to please. Season your egg a little while it's cooking.
Now for the active ingredient: hot sauce.
This recipe, originally from Saveur magazine, was adapted for the book “175 Essential Slow Cooker Classics” by Judith Finlayson.
4 slices bacon
2 onions, chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves, crumbled
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes, including juice
1 cup chicken stock
3 pounds skinless, bone-in chicken thighs (about 12 thighs)
2 (14-ounce) cans creamstyle corn
1 tablespoon chili powder, dissolved in 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (I didn't have any chili powder, so I used 1/2 tablespoon of cayenne. It was spicy but not too much!)
1 teaspoon paprika
Pinch of cayenne pepper, optional
In a skillet, cook bacon over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove and drain thoroughly on paper towel and crumble. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Drain all but 1 tablespoon of fat from pan.
Reduce heat to medium. Add onions to pan and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add garlic, oregano, pepper and salt, to taste, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add tomatoes with juice and stock, and bring to a boil.
Arrange chicken over bottom of slow cooker and cover with vegetable mixture. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours or on high for 3 hours, until juices run clear when chicken is pierced with a fork. Add corn, chili powder mixture, paprika, cayenne and reserved bacon. Stir well. Cover and cook on high for 30 minutes, until corn is heated through.
Ricotta Cheese (a spoonful for each tomato half)
Kosher salt, pepper, olive oil
Oven set to 400°.
Cut Roma tomatoes in half lengthwise and remove the soft stuff to make a shell.
Sprinkle the inside of each tomato with some salt and then transfer them, face down, to a clean towel. This helps dry the tomatoes out a little.
Mince parsley, basil and garlic, add to the ricotta, seasoning with salt and pepper and mix well. (remember that ricotta is unsalted, so be sure to taste while adding salt and pepper so you don't underseason)
Stuff the maters .
Dip the Ricotta-filled tomatoes face down into the cracker crumbs for a nice coating and place on a cookie sheet
Drizzle some olive oil on each tomato so the crumbs brown nicely. Add a little more salt and pepper since the bread crumbs aren't seasoned.
Bake 25-30 minutes for melty yumminess.