Sunday, February 21, 2010

Berries on a Cloud....Ohhh Baby.

I love meringue!! I love how it it puffs up and cracks and looks beautifully homemade! I love the soft marshmallowy center. This recipe adds even more by topping the meringue with a fluffy cream cheesey whip cream layer and then smothered with cherries and strawberries oh my!!!

Recipe adapted from The Recipe Club
6 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 (3 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups heavy whipping cream, whipped
1 (21 ounce) can cherry pie filling
2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
1 teaspoon lemon juice
In a mixing bowl, beat egg whites, cream of tartar and salt until foamy. Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form (do not underbeat). Spread evenly in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pan. Bake at 275 degrees F for 1 hour; turn off oven (do not open door). Let cool in oven overnight or at least 12 hours.
Beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth; gently fold in whipped cream. Spread over meringue. Chill for 4 hours. Cut into 16 pieces. Combine topping ingredients; spoon 1/4 cup over each serving.

Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

I love soups! This is a gem from my friend Kristi. It literally took like 10 minutes to make and is soooo creamy, warm, and delicious!
4 cups chicken broth

2 cups water

2 1/2 - 3 cups cooked and cubed chicken (I used the white meat from a rotisserie chicken)

1 (6.2 oz) box of quick cooking long grain and wild rice mix with seasoning packet

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

3/4 cup flour

1/2 cup butter

2 cups heavy cream

1/2 - 1 cup frozen peas and carrots

In a large pot combine broth, water, and chicken. Bring to boiling and stir in the rice only from the rice mix. Turn heat down to low and simmer with cover on for 5 minutes.Meanwhile in a small bowl combine salt, pepper and flour. In a medium saucepan over medium heat melt the butter. Stir in the rice seasoning packet. Reduce heat to low, then whisk in flour to form a roux. Slowly whisk in cream until fully incorporated and smooth. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 2 minutes, until slightly thickened.Stir cream mixture into the broth, chicken, and rice in pot. Cook over medium heat until heated through. Add drained peas and carrots and heat through. If needed add more chicken broth to thin the soup to desired consistency.

French Bread

This is a very easy and delish french bread recipe that I found on Jen's "Yummy Fun" blog.

7 C flour

3 C water

1 Tlb sugar

2 tsp coarse salt

1 Tlb + 1 tsp yeast

1-2 Tlb cornmeal


1 egg white

1 Tlb water

Mix 4 Cups flour, sugar, (very warm) water and yeast in mixer and let knead for 3-4 minutes. Add salt and remaining flour gradually and let knead for 6-8 minutes. Once kneading is complete, roll out on floured counter space and divide in 1/2 or 1/3's (depending if you want 3 loaves or 2). Roll out into a 8x10 rectangle and roll up lengthwise, jelly roll style. Pinch seams together to seal. Grease cookie sheets and sprinkle cornmeal on sheet. Place loaf on sheet and set aside in warm place to rise (should double) approx 20 minutes. Whisk egg whites and water together, brush over dough loaves. With sharp knife make four shallow slashes across the top of dough loaf. You can also do this before rising if you don't trust yourself with knives and worry about slashing too deep.. you do not want to deflate your loaf. Bake 375 for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool on wire racks.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Orange Pork and Happy Chinese New Year!

So since Valentines day fell on Chinese New year this time around, I thought we would have a little fun and have a chinese Valentines feast for dinner! We enjoyed lettuce wraps, rice, pot stickers and this amazing orange pork!!! It was probably the highlight of the meal! You could also do it with chicken and it would be just as tasty I'm sure!!Recipe modified from
1-2 pounds boneless, skinless pork chopes, cut into small bitesized cubes
1 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 eggs (beaten)
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
Oil (for frying)

Orange Sauce-
1 ½ cups water
2 tablespoons orange juice
¼ cup lemon juice
1/3 cup rice vinegar
2 ½ tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon orange zest (grated)
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ teaspoon ginger root (minced)
½ teaspoon garlic (minced)
2 tablespoons green onion (chopped)
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons water

Combine flour, salt, and pepper. Dip chicken in egg mixture and shake in flour mixture to coat. Deep fry chicken in batches at 375 degrees in a deep fryer (or use a wok) until completely cooked. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan combine 1 ½ cups water, lemon juice, orange juice, rice vinegar, and soy sauce. Blend well over medium heat for a few minutes. Stir in brown sugar, orange zest, ginger garlic, and onion. Bring to a boil.

Combine 3 tablespoons of cornstarch with 1/4 cup of water and mix thoroughly. Slowly stir cornstarch mixture into sauce until it thickens. Pour sauce over breaded chicken, and if desired add red pepper flakes and garnish with green onions. Enjoy

Mexicali Plate

This is a great, quick week night dinner. Thanks for sharing Kristi!! This is one of our new favorites! 1 lb ground beef
1 can refried beans or black beans ( I used black beans)
1/2 t. chile powder
1 12oz can drained white corn ( I used frozen corn)
1 small can sliced olives

1 8oz can of tomate sauce
Cook beef until browned and then add all the rest of ingredients into the pan and heat through. Add 1 cup shredded jack cheese and stir until cheese melts. Top with additional cheese. Serve over lettuce and tortillas. (or tortilla chips to make a "taco salad".) We also added sour cream, chopped cilantro, green onions, and mild salsa to ours.

My favorite new snack....

Sorry, this picture is pretty crappy, but don't let it stop you from trying this!!! It is soooo easy and soooo refreshing! I have it almost every morning for breakfast. Very healthy also! 1 c. mixed, frozen berries (make sure they are frozen! Don't defrost!)

1 small container of peach or strawberry yogurt (or you can do half and half).
Mix together in a bowl and let sit for about 3 minutes for the flavors to blend. Eat and enjoy! You could also top with some granola for a little crunch, but I like it just the way it is!

Jamies "almost' Lasagna and Yummy Garlic Bread

My friend Jamie introduced me to these 2 wonderful recipes....I love easy italian meals that I can whip up fast! The kids love it! I also love, love, love, love, garlic bread and this recipe is a fun twist! Enjoy!

Almost Lasagna

8 oz. barilla mostacccioli noodles
Cook in salted water according to directions. Drain and rinse with cold water.

1tsp. salt
1 tsp. garlic
1 lb. ground beef
1 tsp. pepper
1 bottle of your favorite spaghetti sauce

Cook hamburger with listed seasonings. Drain grease and then add spaghetti sauce. Cook until it starts to boil and take off heat.

1 C. cottage cheese
1 C. sour cream
1 C. grated cheddar cheese

Mix together and add to noodles.

Layer in 9 x 13 starting with meat. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese on top. Bake covered 350 for 30 minutes.

Cheesy bread

french bread loaf sliced in half
1/2 C. mayo
4 TBSP. butter, softened
dash of garlic salt
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1 C. grated cheddar cheese

Combine and spread over bread. Bake at 400 until bubbly and crispy.

Chocolate Banana Bread

Chocolate Swirled Banana Bread
from Our best bites:
2 c. flour
¾ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1 c. sugar
¼ c. butter, softened
1 ½ c. mashed ripe bananas (about 3-4 medium bananas)\
2 eggs
1/3 c. plain lowfat yogurt or sour cream
½ c. chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spoon flour into measuring cups and level. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Cream sugar and butter. Add bananas, eggs, and yogurt, beating until just blended. Add flour mixture. Beat on low until just moistened. Microwave chocolate chips in a medium bowl for 1 minute. Stir until smooth. Cool slightly. Add 1 c. batter to chocolate, stirring until well-combined. Spoon chocolate batter alternately with plain batter (so you have stripes of plain and chocolate batter) in an 8 ½” x 4 ½” loaf pan coated with cooking spray, and swirl batters with a knife Bake at 350 for 1 hour and 15 minutes (give or take a little; I'd probably set your timer for 1 hour and 10 minutes to be safe) or until a knife comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan and then remove and cool completely on a wire rack.
*Note: I just poured the banana batter and then the chocolate batter into the pan, i was lazy and i didn't alternate or swirl....Next time I will alternate and swirl because the chocolate batter burned a little on top and I didn't get that "neat" swirl pattern....The taste is out of this world though!!

Coconut Cupcakes

I love coconut anything!! One of my favorites! I like to make mini cupcakes that are bitesized that you can just pop in your mouth. It makes you feel better when you eat 3 or 4 at a time! :)

Recipe from Ina Garten on the food network:

*note: this recipe is for making the cake version, I like to do mini cupcakes, the recipe doesn't change, just the baking time if you want to do cupcakes!)
3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing the pans
2 cups sugar
5 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons pure almond extract
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the pans
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup milk
4 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
For the frosting:
1 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
1 pound confectioners' sugar, sifted
6 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 2 (9-inch) round cake pans, then line them parchment paper. Grease them again and dust lightly with flour.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium-high speed for 3 to 5 minutes, until light yellow and fluffy. Crack the eggs into a small bowl. With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs 1 at a time, scraping down the bowl once during mixing. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix well. The mixture might look curdled; don't be concerned.
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the dry ingredients and the milk to the batter in 3 parts, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Mix until just combined. Fold in the 4 ounces of coconut with a rubber spatula.
Pour the batter evenly into the 2 pans and smooth the top with a knife. Bake in the center of the oven for 45 to 55 minutes, until the tops are browned and a cake tester comes out clean. Cool on a baking rack for 30 minutes, then turn the cakes out onto a baking rack to finish cooling.
For the frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese, butter, vanilla and almond extract on low speed. Add the confectioners' sugar and mix until just smooth (don't whip!).
To assemble, place 1 layer on a flat serving plate, top side down, and spread with frosting. Place the second layer on top, top side up, and frost the top and sides. To decorate the cake, sprinkle the top with coconut and lightly press more coconut onto the sides. Serve at room temperature.

Superbowl Goodies!!!

We had such a fun Superbowl party at our house this year! We love to throw parties and I tend to go overboard with the food! Here is a sampling of some of the goodies we had.....Some old and some new, but all delicious!!!

Posted by PicasaAll the recipes are posted on this blog, so check them out for next year! We had my favorite homemade salsa, Becca's buffalo wings, creamy hot corn dip, and kahlua pork BBQ sandwiches...and that's just what I made! There was a lot of food, a good game, and lots of good friends!!! Hopefully next year my Bronco's will be in the game!!! :P

Creamy Corn Dip

This was another superbowl treat this year....Really creamy, with a little kick! Nummy with tortilla chips! I think it would also be good with slices of baguette!Creamy Corn Dip

2 tablespoons butter
3 1/2 cups corn kernels (from 4 ears fresh white or yellow corn, or frozen fresh corn)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup finely chopped yellow onions
1/2 cup finely chopped red bell peppers - I used roasted red bell peppers from a jar.
1/4 cup chopped green onions (green and white parts)
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 to 1 cup mayonnaise - 1/2 C was plenty for mine
4 ounces monterey jack or cheddar, shredded- I used monterey jack
4 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
Tortilla chips, for dipping
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the corn, salt, and black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the kernels turn deep golden brown, about 5 minutes. Note that if you're using frozen corn it probably won't get golden brown. Just cook for about 5 minutes as the recipe states. Transfer to a bowl.
Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter in the skillet. Add the onions and bell peppers and cook, stirring often, until the onions are wilted, about 2 minutes. Add the green onions, jalapeno, and garlic and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, or until the vegetables are softened. Transfer to the bowl with the corn.
Add 1/2 C mayo, cayenne pepper, half of the monterey jack and half of the cheddar and mix well. If you need more mayo to hold the mixture together then add it, but I found that 1/2 C was plenty, and I even added a little extra cheese.
Pour into an 8-inch square baking dish, or something equivilant and sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. Bake until bubbly and golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Serve hot with tortilla chips.

Kalua Pork

This is a must add to your recipe box recipe! It only has 4 ingredients, feeds a lot of people and is SOOOOO good!!! We sure enjoyed it while watching the superbowl!!!
Kalua Pork BBQ sandwiches
adapted from My Kitchen Cafe

7-8 lbs pork shoulder butt roast
1 bottle liquid smoke
2-3 T. sea salt
1 c. water

Trim large fat pockets off of roast. (leave some fat for flavor!) Pour water and liquid smoke into crock pot. Rub sea salt all over pork roast and add to crock pot. Cook on low for 8-10 hours until roast shreds with a fork. You can just eat it this way with rice or potatoes and it is soooo tender and good! We made it into BBQ sandwiches for our superbowl party and they were a hit!! Just toast up some hoagie rolls, butter, top with pork, your favorite BBQ sauce, and a slice of provolone cheese!! TO DIE FOR!!!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Superbowl Tasties!!!

Hey all! Stay tuned for some yummy superbowl recipes coming soon! (i know I'm behind...but that's the story of my life!!!)......


Share with us all! If you have any recipes you would like me to post or try, email them to me: . Thanks for sharing your kitchens with me! Happy cooking!

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