Monthly Archives: April 2012

Easter Haystacks

You will need:

  • 1 bag of chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 bag of fiber one cereal
  • 1 bag of whoppers robins egg

Temper the chocolate until melted. Mix with cereal until well coated. Shape into nests on a wax-paper lined cookie sheet. Top with robins eggs and freeze for 30 minutes or until hard. Enjoy!

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Best-yet homemade Mac n’ Cheese

After several recipes, methods, and ingredients, we’ve come down to this: best-yet homemade mac n’ cheese.

Yum!

You will need:

  • 6 strips of center-cut bacon
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 garlic glove, minced
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 1/2 cups grated extra sharp white cheese, shredded (we used Cougar Gold)
  • pepper to taste
  • 1 box of ribbed penne pasta
  • 1 cup of pretzels; broken into bits

Cook bacon in a saucepan; set aside. Keep bacon grease to saute onion and garlic. Once browned, add butter. Once melted, reduce heat to medium and add flour. Mix with a whisk; this is the start of your roux. Once combined, reduce heat to low and add heavy cream and milk in 1/4 cup increments, alternating milk and cream. Mix each addition until blended; the sauce will be thick and beige. After all milk/cream is added, turn heat off and add shredded cheese, stirring constantly to incorporate. Add bacon and pepper to taste.

In a 9×12 baking dish, add 1/2 of the cooked pasta; add 1/2 of the sauce. Repeat. Mix sauce and pasta to combine. Top with pretzels.

Bake for 30 minutes at 400F or until top is browned.

Enjoy!

Baked Chicken in Creamy Tomato Sauce

This is my new favorite dinner recipe!

Called, “The Six-Kid Crowdpleaser” from Dinner: a Love Story.

A note on the medium: definitely use a dutch oven. Skillet to bakeware simply does not work.

In an ovenproof skillet or Dutch oven , brown 3 to 4 large boneless chicken breasts over high heat in olive oil, about 2 minutes a side. Remove breasts from pan. (They do not have to be cooked through.) Turn down heat to medium-low and add one onion (finely chopped) and 2 cloves garlic (minced). After about 2 minutes, stir in one 15-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in 3-4 tablespoons mascarpone and a handful of roughly chopped basil. Add chicken back to pan, immersing them in sauce. Bake at 350°F for 20 minutes.

Old-fashioned Banana Cake

From The Barefoot Contessa- How Easy is That?

Saw Ina make this for a bake sale on Food network.

Basically, banana bread + cream cheese frosting. Upgrade!

Tomatoes on the Vine's rendition- mine looked very similar (yes this means I forgot to take a picture, again)
http://tomatoesonthevine-velva.blogspot.com

  • 3 very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Grated zest of 1 orange
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking sod
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe follows)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9 by 2-inch round cake pan.

Mix the bananas, granulated sugar, and brown sugar on low speed until combined. With the mixer still on low, add the oil, eggs, sour cream, vanilla, and orange zest. Mix until smooth.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Stir in the chopped walnuts. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes, turn out onto a cooling rack, and cool completely.

Add frosting, liberally:

  • 6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar

Mix the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on low speed until just combined.  Add the sugar and mix until smooth.

Tagged

Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas

From “Joyful Momma’s Kitchen- Cooking, Baking, and Mess Making” (http://joyful-mommas-kitchen.blogspot.com).

I had been searching for a white-sauce chicken enchilada recipe for a while, and this one is quite tasty!

Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas

These are delicious!

You will need:

10 soft taco shells
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
3 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. flour
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup sour cream
1 (4 oz) can diced green chillies
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 9×13 pan
Mix chicken and 1 cup cheese.  Roll up in tortillas and place in pan.
In a sauce pan, melt butter, stir in flour and cook 1 minute.  Add broth and whisk until smooth.  Heat over medium heat until thick and bubbly.  Stir in sour cream and chilies.  Do not bring to boil, you don’t want curdled sour cream.
Pour over enchiladas and top with remaining cheese.

Bake 22 min and then under high broil for 3 min to brown the cheese.

This classic recipe is simple and hearty, from “A Year of Slow Cooking” by Stephanie O’Dea (crockpot365.blogspot.com).

Stephanie O'Dea's Taco Soup from "A Year of Slow Cooking"

You will need:
2 cans of kidney beans
2 cans of pinto beans
2 cans of corn
1 large can of diced tomatoes
1 can tomatoes and chiles
1 packet taco seasoning (McCormick)
1 packet ranch dressing mix (Hidden Valley)
1 lb browned ground hamburger
Shredded cheese, sour cream
Brown meat; drain fat and add meat to crockpot. Sprinkle seasoning packets on top of meat. Drain and rinse the beans and add. Add the entire contents of the corn and tomato cans. Stir together.
Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 4-5. The longer you cook it, the better! Embellish (cheese, sour cream).
Enjoy!

Taco Soup