Monday, December 28, 2009
It's a little late, since I didn't really have a plan until now. With the holidays I haven't been on top of my game, but think I have a plan for this week. We are having a 2nd Christmas on the 29th, which also happens to be my birthday. Hubby will be preparing a smorgasbord of my favorite foods, which we will be enjoying with some of his family. The rest of the week will be devoted to returning the house to normal, with the removal of our dying Christmas tree and decorations. So here is the plan for this week.
Mon- Pasta Fagioli soup
Tues- Bday dinner: BBQ ribs, homemade Ravioli, Chicken and Dumplings and chocolate cake
Fri- Tuna with Cheesy Garlic Biscuits (new recipe)
Sun- Braised Beef with noodles
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and has a happy and safe New Year!!!
Sunday, December 20, 2009
So far my list is half completed. I've made Chow Mein Noodle Cookies and Knock You Naked Brownies, which you can find on previous posts. The recipes I'd like to share with you today are Lemon Graham Squares and Roll Out Sugar Cookies. I first made the lemon squares last Christmas. I normally make lemon squares with a shortbread crust, so thought I'd see what this recipe was like. Hubby and I love lemon, so I knew they wouldn't be wasted. I have to say I prefer these to my original lemon bars. I find they taste tangier and the brown sugar in the crust add a deep, warm and comforting feel to them. These are super easy to make and taste amazing.
When Mr.B was 2, I had a vision in my head of the perfect Christmas, complete with us decorating sugar cookies, as a family. My vision didn't turn out the way I had wanted it too, but the cookies were divine. I've been making them every Christmas since. And the vision of the perfect Christmas is also improving with every passing year, now that Mr.B is getting older and more patient.
Queenie sat on the sidelines for these, and was the sprinkle Quality Control Girl, LOL.
I let Mr.B roll, cut out and decorate 1/3 of the dough. I kept the rest for me to roll and frost with a really great frosting I found on Cooking for your Family. It was a nice evening with the kids, who enjoyed sampling one of Mr.B's creations, before bed.
Rolled Sugar Cookies
Submitted by Maureen via Pillsbury
1 Cup sugar
1 Cup margarine or butter
3 TBS milk
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups all purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
Heat oven to 400°F. In a large bowl, combine sugar, margarine, milk, vanilla and egg; mix well. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt; mix well.
On lightly floured surface, roll out 1/3 of dough at a time to 1/8 in. thickness. Cut with cookie cutters. Place one inch apart on ungreased cookies sheet.
Bake 5-9 minutes or until edges are light brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheets
Sugar Cookie Icing
Submitted by Kris, adapted from allrecipes
1 C powdered sugar
1 heaping, slightly overflowing T of milk
1 level T of light corn syrup
1/8 tsp of almond extract*
choice of food coloring
Mix all ingredients together well. Seperate in small bowls and tint with food coloring. If you're adding sprinkles to the cookies, add them quickly, before this icing hardens on the cookie. If the icing has sat, untouched, for a while, you may need to stir it to soften it up again. This recipe needs to be doubled in order to have enough to frost all the cookies from Maureen's recipe. I just divided it into different bowls to make all the different colors I wanted.
Lemon Graham Squares
Submitted by: ~Mommy2Jeremy&Tyler~
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 24 squares)
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 cup butter, melted
In a bowl, combine the milk and lemon juice; mix well and set aside. In another bowl, combine cracker crumbs, flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir in butter until crumbly. Press half of the crumb mixture into a greased 9 inch square baking dish. Pour lemon mixture over crust; sprinkle with remaining crumbs. Bake at 375* for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely before cutting into squares. (Makes 3 dozen)
Friday, December 18, 2009
This is a pretty quick recipe, using canned cream soup and frozen vegetables. It is quite similar to the Bisquick Pot Pie, except I use my Mom's Baking Powder Biscuit recipe to put on top. It just makes it feel more like home. I think it was just what we needed tonight, since we all ate with much enthusiasm, LOL. Great comfort food, for those cold winter nights.
Chicken Pot Pie with Biscuit Crust
1 2/3 cup frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
1 cup cut-up cooked chicken
1 can (10 3/4 oz) condensed cream of chicken soup
1 can of milk
2 C flour
1/3 C shortening
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbs baking powder
3/4 C milk (more if too thick)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a bowl, whisk together the milk and soup, until smooth. Add in vegetables and chicken and mix well. Pour into a 9 inch pie plate. In another bowl, mix together the flour, salt and baking powder. Cut in shortening, until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the milk and mix well, adding additional milk if needed. The batter should be thinner than a biscuit batter, almost like a super thick pancake batter. Evenly spoon batter onto the soup mixture, trying to smooth is out, as much as possible. Bake uncovered, for 45 minutes, until bubbling and crust is golden brown.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Refrigerate: 3 hours
Cook Time: 7 minutes per batch
Makes 3 dozen or 36 (1 cookie) servings.
3 1/4 cups flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons McCormick® Cream of Tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
72 small pretzel twists
72 candy-coated milk chocolate pieces
36 small red gumdrops
1. Mix, flour, cocoa powder, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt; set aside.
2. Beat butter and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Gradually stir in flour mixture until well mixed. Divide dough into 6 portions. Wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate about 3 hours or until dough is easy to handle.
3. Preheat oven to 375°F. On a lightly floured surface, roll each portion of dough into a 6-inch circle. Using a knife, cut each circle into 6 wedges. Place wedges about 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.
4. For antlers, lightly press pretzels into the upper corners of each triangle. Press in chocolate pieces for eyes. For a nose, press a red gumdrop about 1/2 inch from the point.
5. Bake 7 to 9 minutes or until edges are firm. Do not overbake. Cool on baking sheets 1 minute. Remove to wire racks; cool completely.
Recipes tested and approved for McCormick by the Better Homes and Gardens® Test Kitchen.
Saturday Night Special
Recipe of the Week
Monday, December 14, 2009
Good morning everyone! This upcoming week will be a busy and eventful one for us. It's Mr.B's last week of school before Christmas Holidays. He will also be performing in his first Christmas concert at school. I'm so excited to go see my little boy sing on stage with his class! We still need to finish Christmas shopping and start wrapping gifts. I'm also starting my baking this week, with Mr.B helping me make Reindeer Cookies for his class party. Keep an eye out for those in the next few days..... Here is what's on the menu this week. I just hope I have enough energy at the end of the day to follow through with it, LOL.
- Roast Beef with potatoes and corn
- Hubby's Chicken and Dumplings
- Pierogi Chicken Lasagna with a salad
- Open Faced Hot Beef Sandwiches with peas
- Leftovers ( hopefully enough for 2 nights this week)
Once again Thanks to the Organizing Junkie for hosting Meal Plan Mondays. Head on over to check out tons of other great meal plans!!
Saturday, December 12, 2009
New England Baked Beans
Adapted from Cooks.com
1 pound dry navy beans (or other small white bean)
1 1/4 C. brown sugar
1 C. ketchup (may sub chili sauce for more kick)
1/2 C. dark molasses
2 T. your favorite mustard
2 T. vinegar
1/2 t. fresh ground pepper
salt to taste
Sort and rinse beans, then place in a large pot and cover with water plus 3 inches. Let beans soak 8 to 12 hours. Drain and rinse then add fresh water to cover. Bring to a rolling boil, cover, lower heat and simmer for about 45 minutes. Drain and reserve the liquid. Place beans and all remaining ingredients in a 6 quart pot. Mix well. Add enough of the cooking water to cover plus about 1/2 inch above. Cover tightly and place in preheated 325 degree oven. Bake for 4-5 hours, stirring a couple times, and adding liquid if they start to get dry.
Cindy's notes: I like to add partridge or chicken breast to my beans. They soak up the sweet molasses taste and it's heavenly. If you decide to do this, add the meat before baking the beans in the oven.
Friday, December 11, 2009
8-10 Hot dogs
1 cup Cornmeal
1 cup flour
1 T sugar
1 T baking powder
1 t Chili powder
1 t salt
1 cup milk
1/4 cup Oil
Oil for frying
Impale the hot dogs on skewers, popsicle sticks or trimmed twigs. Dry the dogs well and set aside. Mix dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Beat milk, eggs and oil in another bowl. Stir milk mixture into dry ingredients just until the batter comes together. Heat about 1" of oil in a skillet till just shimmering, about 360°. Pour batter into a tall glass. Dip the dog in the batter to cover. Fry dog in hot oil on both sides till browned (about 2-3 minutes). Remove to paper towels. Continue as above with the rest of the dogs till all done.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
3 Cheese and Bacon Macaroni
4 cups dried macaroni
1/2 lb of bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/4 cup (1/2 stick, 4 tablespoons) butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 1/2 cups whole milk
2 C sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1 C Mozzarella cheese, grated
1/2 C Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt (more to taste)
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
12 Ritz crackers, finely crushed
1/2C cheddar cheese, grated
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook macaroni until al dente and drain. In a large pot, melt butter and sprinkle in flour. Whisk together over medium-low heat. Cook mixture for three minutes, whisking constantly. Don’t let it burn. Pour in milk and whisk until smooth. Cook for five minutes until very thick. Reduce heat to low. Add in cheeses and stir to melt. Add salt and pepper and taste to see if you need to adjust seasonings. Add in bacon and cooked macaroni. Spoon into a casserole dish sprayed with cooking spray. Mix cracker crumbs and 1/2 C of cheese together. Sprinkle evenly onto macaroni. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes until to is golden brown.
Monday, December 7, 2009
In no particular order:
- Pasta with White Beans and Tomatoes
- Pork Stir Fry
- Hubby's BBQ Ribs, Baked Potatoes and corn
- Lasagna, Garlic Bread and Caesar Salad
- Corn Dogs and French Fries
- Baked Beans with Partridge and Fresh Bread
Once again I'm participating in Meal Plan Mondays over at The Orginazation Junkie. Head on over to find tons of meals plans from busy Moms, getting ready for the Holidays.
Saturday, December 5, 2009
These were really good. I especially like the contrast between the crunchy topping and soft sweet potatoes. The kids are still unconvinced that sweet potatoes are good, so they turned their noses up at it, after the one bite rule. Hubby and my nephew must have liked them, since there is only a tiny bit left this morning. This would be a really great alternative to sweet potato casserole, for Thanksgiving. Thanks MM for sharing your awesome recipe with us.
Ms. EnPlace, adapted from Sugary Sam's Sweet Potatoes
1 40 oz can cut sweet potatoes, drained
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup butter, melted
Heat oven to 350. Place drained yams in an ungreased 2 qt casserole or baking dish. (Note: I like to spread the yams out even more in a larger dish so that the topping is more evenly distributed) If some pieces are too large, cut them to the size you'd like. In a small bowl, combine remaining ingredients; blend well. Sprinkle over yams. Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes or until bubbly.
Cindy's notes: I used fresh sweet potatoes that I boiled until fork tender, then sliced about 1/4 inch thick.
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Master Pizza Dough
Submitted by Amy
Makes 1 (14-inch) thick-crust pizza or 2 (12-inch) thin-crust pizzas.
3 to 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 package FLEISCHMANN'S RapidRise Yeast
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup very warm water (120 to 130F)
2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
In large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, undissolved yeast, and salt. Stir very warm water and olive oil into dry ingredients. Stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 4 to 6 minutes. Cover; let rest on floured surface10 minutes. Lightly oil 1 (14-inch) or 2 (12-inch) round pizza pan(s).** Sprinkle with cornmeal. Shape dough into smooth ball. Divide and roll dough to fit desired pan(s). Bake in preheated hot oven (450)for about 10-15 minutes.
Amy’s Notes: Honestly, I think this recipe is so easy, I just mix it with a spoon at first and then switch to using my hands. I only knead until it is smooth --probably about 4 or 5 minutes. test it after a few minutes to see if you can pull a piece of the dough into a thin, tight membrane that you can see light through. If it breaks before you can get it there, knead some more
TO FREEZE: Just put the dough into a ball, put a very light coat of olive oil on it, then place it in two plastic bags, tied tightly. It will keep in the freezer for about 3 months. When you need to use it, simply take it out and thaw.
Deep Fried Vegetables
Adapted from Cooks.com
1 c. sifted flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 c. milk
2 tbsp. oil
1 lb of veggies such as zucchini ( cut into 3-4 inch sticks), mushrooms, onions (sliced into rings), cauliflower (cut into florets) or dill pickle (sliced).
Additional flour (optional)
Oil for deep frying
Heat oil to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add egg and milk and whisk until smooth. Toss the veggies with flour, then dip into the batter. Gently drop battered veggies into the oil, making sure to not over crowd the fryer, since they will stick together. Cook until golden brown on both sides. Remove and drain on paper towels. Serve veggies with your choice of Ranch dressing, Ketchup or marinara sauce for dipping.
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
The first time I made Pasta Primavera was at my sister's house, many years ago. I was visiting for a few weeks and was making dinner for her and her family, to give her a break after work. I found the recipe in a Canadian Living cookbook. It was so simple to make that the recipe has stuck in my head this whole time. I like it because it's a great way to get a lot of veggies in, while enjoying one of my favorite foods; Pasta.
3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 C flour
salt and pepper
2 Tbs water
1/2 C seasoned bread crumbs
1 jar of your favorite pasta sauce
6 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded
oil for frying
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large Ziploc bag, pound out chicken to 1/2 an inch thick. Place flour in a shallow dish or pie plate. Season with salt and pepper. In a second shallow dish whisk together the egg and water. In a third shallow dish mix together the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Add enough oil, to a large fry pan, to coat the bottom. Heat oil, over medium heat. Once oil is hot, take 1 chicken breast and dredge in flour. Then in the egg mixture and finally in the breadcrumb mixture. Repeat with each remaining chicken breast. Place in hot oil and cook on both sides until golden brown, 3-5 minutes each side. Once browned place chicken breast in a baking dish and cover with pasta sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella and bake, covered, for 30-45 minutes; until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.
Adapted from Canadian Living Cookbook
2/3 box spaghetti
2Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp onion powder
1 med zucchini, cut into thin strips
1 large carrot, cut into thin strips
1 rib celery, chopped
1 red pepper, cut into thin strips
1/2 C chicken broth
salt and pepper
2 Tbs butter
1/2 C Parmesan cheese
In a large pot of boiling water, cook spaghetti. Meanwhile in a large skillet heat oil and butter, over medium heat. Once butter starts to bubble add in garlic. Cook for 30 seconds, then add vegetables. Season with salt, pepper and onion powder. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in chicken broth and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer until carrots are tender, but slightly crisp, 5-10 minutes. Once pasta is cooked, drain and return to pot. Add butter to hot pasta and toss to coat. Once vegetables are tender, add spaghetti to the skillet, along with the Parmesan cheese. Toss to coat and serve.
Cindy's notes: I used Penne pasta, since that's what I was in the mood for. I also omitted the red pepper, since we didn't have any.