Creating memories in the kitchen...One meal at a time.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

French Toast Supreme

I am a huge fan of Monte Cristo sandwiches, so when I came across this recipe in a new cookbook I picked up, I just had to try it. Well, it didn't disappoint! This was such a yummy version of french toast, I may never go back to the plain stuff again!

French Toast Supreme
from the Taste of Home Simple & Delicious Cookbook

8 slices Texas toast
4 sliced Canadian bacon
4 slices Monetery Jack cheese
1 egg
1/2 cup refrigerated French vanilla nondairy creamer
Confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup seedless raspberry jam

On four slices of Texas toast, place one slice of bacon and one slice of cheese; top with remaining Texas toast. In a shallow bowl, whisk egg and creamer. Dip sandwiches into egg mixture.

On a hot griddle or large skillet coated with nonstick cooking spray, cook sandwiches for 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Sprinkle with confectioners' sugar if desired. Serve with jam. Makes 4 servings.

Posted by: Julia
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Monday, June 15, 2009

Father's Day Menu

We'll be heading off later this week for a well anticipated summer vacation so I won't be posting for quite awhile, but I wanted to leave you with a menu idea for Father's Day. These ribs are one of my Mom's most requested recipes. They are my absolute, all time favorite and quickly became a favorite of my husbands too. I have to admit, I've never even tried another recipe. The sweet of the chili sauce, with the tart from the lemon is a winning combination. I like to use the boneless, country style ribs. They cook up so tender with no annoying bones to worry about. Plus, I think they taste just as delicious baked as they do on the grill so you if you're like me and are clueless when it comes to the BBQ, no worries. Most of this meal can be made the day before so you can both relax!
The Menu:
BBQ Ribs
Potato Salad or Funeral Potatoes
Corn on the Cob
Lemon Cake or Texas Sheet Cake

Mom's BBQ'd (or baked) Ribs
from Better Homes and Gardens
2 lbs. boneless, country style pork ribs

For the Sauce:
1/2 c. chili sauce
2 1/2 tsp. prepared mustard
1/4 c. butter1/4 c. finely minced onion (I like to do mine in a mini food processor and get them nice and small)
1 c. Ketchup
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. Worcestershire
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1 lemon sliced

Either- Simmer ribs covered in salt water in saucepan until tender about 45-60 minutes or (my preferred method )-- put ribs in crock pot until just barely covered with salted water. Cook on low for 7 hours. Drain and refrigerate until baking or grilling. (I do this the night before). Meanwhile, prepare sauce. In a saucepan, combine ketchup, chili sauce, brown sugar, butter and onion. Add mustard, Worcestershire sauce, garlic salt and lemon slices. Bring mixture to a boil. Remove from heat.
If Baking in oven: Place hot ribs in shallow roasting pan; pour generous amount of sauce over ribs. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, basting with sauce every 10 minutes.
If grilling: Grill ribs over medium to low coals about 10-15 minutes each side, brushing often with sauce.

Perfect Potato Salad
My Kitchen Cafe

This potato salad was great. I've never had a potato salad recipe I've liked well enough to stick with. I really liked the "dressing" on this one. This recipe also gives you the option of serving it warm or cold. I will definitely be making this again. I think next time I will add pickles too.

2 cups mayonnaise
2/3 cups buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. minced dried onions
1 1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. seasoned salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
2 tbsp. mustard

Shake vigorously in jar or blend in blender until well combined.

5 lbs. potatoes (red is what I used)
1 cup sliced olives
10 hard boiled eggs, diced
Peel, dice and boil potatoes until tender but not mushy. Drain potatoes well and pour into large bowl. Add sliced olives and hard boiled eggs. If you want to serve it warm--- Pour dressing over warm potatoes until desired "dressing-level" is reached. If you would like it cold pour a thin coating over the potatoes and refrigerate until cold (or overnight). Right before serving add remaining dressing to your liking. The recipe says it serves 6-8 but I would say 10-15.

Lemon Cake w/ Lemon Glaze
This recipe was given to me by my Mother in Law and has been a favorite of both my husband and I for years. The cake is moist and full of lemon flavor and it starts with a cake mix so it's really easy. It's got a nice, simple glaze of powdered sugar and lemon juice which keeps it nice and light, perfect for spring and summer.

1 box yellow cake mix
1 3 oz. pkg. Lemon Jello
3/4 c. oil
3/4 c. water
4 eggs
1 tsp. lemon extract

1 1/2-2 cups powdered sugar
3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat all ingredients together for 4 minutes. Bake in greased 9 x 13 pan for 30-40 minutes. When cake is done poke holes with fork all over the top of the cake. Pour glaze evenly over cake and put back in a 200 degree oven for 2-5 minutes just to "bake-in" the glaze.
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Friday, June 12, 2009

Out of this World Rice Krispie Treats

I think I've died and gone to Heaven. I could seriously be sitting here as I type eating a whole pan of these, but like the saint that I am, I will dutifully send them to a Soccer Party as promised. Good thing too because I really don't know if I could restrain myself . These are that good! Loaded with gooey marshmallows, peanut butter, toffee chips and a thick, gooey layer of chocolate on top. Believe me, they won't last long.

Toffee Rice Krispie Treats
adapted from recipezaar

1/2 c. butter
80 large marshmallows
1/3 cup peanut butter
10 cups Rice Krispie's Cereal
1 1/3 bag toffee pieces
12 oz. chocolate chips, milk or semi-sweet
butter for pan

1. Place butter in a very large mixing bowl.
2. Microwave on high for 1-1 1/2 minutes or until melted.
3. Add marshmallows and stir to coat with butter.
4. Microwave on high for 3 minutes, stirring after each minute.
5. Stir in peanut butter until smooth.
6. Stir in cereal and toffee chips until well coated
7. Transfer mixture to a foil-lined and buttered 9 x 13 pan.
8. With buttered spatula, press mixture evenly into pan.
9. Melt chocolate chips in microwave stirring every 30 seconds. Spread evenly on top of Rice Krispie Treats.
Makes 20 bars

Posted by: Sallie

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Thursday, June 11, 2009

French Dip Sandwiches

Up until now there has been a household debate when it comes to French Dip Sandwiches. My husbands idea of a perfect French Dip- buy sliced roast beef lunch meat, warm it up, get some cheese, slap it all on a roll and open a can of beef broth and there you go. I on the other hand, prefer a real roast, simmered in the crock pot with lots of flavors. Thankfully, I found this recipe that we both love. Just as an added note this meal is GREAT for leftovers. I've included a few ideas below.

Beef Taquitos- Remember the chicken taquitos we loved? Apparently so did everyone else so they created a beef version. Just make sure to cook a large roast so you'll have enough leftovers

Barbequed Beef Sandwiches- Just add your favorite BBQ sauce to the shredded meat and there you go.

French Dip Sandwiches
From our best bites

2.5-3 lb. beef roast (you can use a frozen roast if you want)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
salt and pepper
2 1-ounce packages dry onion soup mix
2 c. water
2 cans beef broth
6-8 large buns (or more...6 would be VERY generous servings!)
Swiss, provolone, or mozzarella cheese, shredded or sliced.
Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat and rub roast with salt and pepper.When very hot, carefully place roast in pan and sear on all sides. You're not cooking the meat, you're just browning it quickly on all sides to add flavor and seal in the juices. Place in crockpot and sprinkle with onion soup mixes. Pour water and beef broth over roast.Cook 8-10 hours on low or cook 4-5 hours on high and another 3-4 hours on low. It's hard to screw this part up; basically, the longer it cooks, the more tender it will be. But you know it's done when you pop a fork in it and the meat just falls apart. When meat is ready, shred with a fork.Place meat in crusty rolls. Top with cheese and broil open-faced in the oven or toaster oven for a few minutes, until bread is golden and cheese is melty. Ladle juices into small cups for dipping and enjoy! 8 servings.

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Baked Manicotti

I love eating pasta but sometimes want something a little different. I saw this recipe made on America's Test Kitchen and knew I wanted to try it. I loved their great idea of soaking no boil lasagna noodles instead of using the manicotti shells. It made it so much easier and looked really pretty. The tomato sauce came together really quickly and all the different layers of cheese were so yummy. This dish does take a little extra time but it was well worth it. My favorite part was the top layer of sauce and the broiled parmesan cheese. This dish is definately worthy of company. (I promise it looks a lot better than the picture. I really need to take a photography class.)

Baked Manicotti

America's Test Kitchen

Tomato Sauce
2 28-ounce cans diced tomatoes (in juice)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 medium cloves garlic , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1 tablespoon)
1/2 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes , optional (I used these and it wasn't hot at all)
Table Salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Cheese Filling and Pasta
cups part-skim ricotta cheese
4 ounces grated Parmesan cheese (about 2 cups)
8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese (about 2 cups)
2 large eggs , lightly beaten
3/4 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
16 No-boil lasagna noodles (they recommend Barilla which is what I used)

1. For the Sauce: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Pulse 1 can tomatoes with their juice in food processor until coarsely chopped, 3 or 4 pulses. Transfer to bowl. Repeat with remaining can tomatoes.
2. Heat oil, garlic, and pepper flakes (if using) in large saucepan over medium heat until fragrant but not brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and 1/2 teaspoon salt and simmer until thickened slightly, about 15 minutes. Stir in basil; adjust seasoning with salt.
3. For the cheese filling: Combine ricotta, 1 cup Parmesan, mozzarella, eggs, salt, pepper, and herbs in medium bowl; set aside.
4. To assemble: Pour 1 inch boiling water into 13 by 9-inch broilersafe baking dish, then add noodles one at a time. Let noodles soak until pliable, about 5 minutes, separating noodles with tip of sharp knife to prevent sticking. Remove noodles from water and place in single layer on clean kitchen towels; discard water in baking dish and dry baking dish.
5. Spread bottom of baking dish evenly with 1 1/2 cups sauce. Using soupspoon, spread 1/4 cup cheese mixture evenly onto bottom three-quarters of each noodle (with short side facing you), leaving top quarter of noodle exposed. Roll into tube shape and arrange in baking dish seam side down. Top evenly with remaining sauce, making certain that pasta is completely covered.
6. Cover manicotti with aluminum foil. Bake until bubbling, about 40 minutes, then remove foil. Remove baking dish, adjust oven rack to uppermost position (about 6 inches from heating element), and heat broiler. Sprinkle manicotti evenly with remaining 1 cup Parmesan. Broil until cheese is spotty brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Cool 15 minutes, then serve. Serves 8.

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Toffee Apple Dip

A friend just called and requested the recipe and it is too yummy not to post. I make this a lot in the fall but really it's perfect for anytime of year. It's the perfect mix of sweet,creamy and crunchy. Just like eating a yummy caramel apple. Really easy too.

Toffee Apple Dip

8 oz. cream cheese
1/4 c. brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 bag of skor candy bits

Mix together cream cheese, brown sugar, sugar and vanilla until smooth. Stir in toffee bits. Serve with red and green apple slices.

Posted by: Sallie

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Monday, June 8, 2009

Sweet and Salty Turtle Cookie Bars

My friend Christy made these a couple of days ago and they were so delicious, I put them on the menu for Sunday dessert. They start with a layer of chocolate chip cookie dough on the bottom , followed by drizzled caramel ice cream topping, crushed pretzels, pecans andthen to finish it off, another layer of cookie dough on top. Pure heaven. Even better with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side. My pictures turned out really bad, so I used the one from Jenny's website. (Just FYI mine did not look a lot like hers. Instead of scooping the extra dough out of a cookie scoop, I just pressed it down over all the toppings so the finished look was a lot like a normal chocolate chip cookie bar. I might try it the other way next time because hers do look really pretty.)

Sweet and Salty Turtle Cookie Bars

slightly adapted from Picky Palate

2 sticks softened butter

3/4 Cup sugar

3/4 Cup brown sugar

2 eggs 1 teaspoon vanillla

2 1/2 Cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 Cups chocolate chips

3/4 Cup caramel ice cream topping

1/2 Cup chopped pretzel sticks

1/2 Cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a stand or electric mixer cream butter and sugars until well combined. Add eggs and vanilla until well combined. Place flour, baking soda and salt into a large bowl and slowly add to wet ingredients. Stir in chocolate chips. 2. Spray a 11x7 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Press 1/2 of the cookie dough into the bottom of the dish. Drizzle caramel sauce over dough then sprinkle with pretzels and nuts . With a cookie scoop, scoop the remaining cookie dough evenly over top of pretzels and nuts. Press down slightly, should look uneven. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until cookies just start to turn golden on the edges. Remove and let cool completely before cutting into squares. 12 bars

Posted by: Sallie
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Sunday, June 7, 2009

Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos

This was a major hit at my house. Seriously. My son, who was on his way to soccer practice after dinner, made me promise repeatedly that I would save him more taquitos for when he got home and that was the first thing he asked about when he got picked up. My husband, after finishing dinner said, I'm ready to have those again soon! In fact, EVERYONE in my house loved them and that's a winner in my book. The filling is super easy, especially if you use your crockpot to cook the chicken, and is so creamy and flavorful. The taquitos baked up nice and crunchy and the kosher salt was the perfect finishing touch. Plus, another great thing is that these are baked, not fried. They would also make a great appetizer.
Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos
1/3 C (3 oz) cream cheese
1/4 C green salsa
1T fresh lime juice
1/2 t cumin
1 t chili powder
1/2 t onion powder
1/4 t granulated garlic or garlic powder
3 T chopped cilantro
2 T sliced green onions
2 C shredded cooked chicken
1 C grated pepperjack cheese (I used monterey jack)
small corn tortillas
kosher salt
cooking spray
Heat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly coat with cooking spray.Heat cream cheese in the microwave for about 20-30 seconds so it's soft and easy to stir. Add green salsa, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, onion powder and granulated garlic. Stir to combine and then add cilantro and green onions. Add chicken and cheese and combine well.You can prepare up to this step ahead of time. Just keep the mixture in the fridge. Work with a few tortillas at a time and heat in the microwave until they are soft enough to roll without cracking. It helps to place them between damp paper towels. Usually 20-30 seconds will do it. If you find yours are cracking when you roll them or come unrolled right away, just try heating them longer and try the paper towel thing.Place 2-3 T of chicken mixture on the lower third of a tortilla, keeping it about 1/2 inch from the edges. Then roll it up as tight as you can.Place seam side down on the baking sheet. Lay all of the taquitos on the baking sheet and make sure they are not touching each other. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray or an oil mister and sprinkle some kosher salt on top. Place pan in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until crisp and the ends start to get golden brown.Dip 'em in salsa, sour cream or guacamole. Makes about 16.
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Thick and Chewy M & M Cookies

This is the Cook's Illustrated version of Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies. I was making them for kids so I decided to swap out half the chocolate chips for M & M's. I've made them before and was happy to be reminded of how much I like them. They make a thick, chewy cookie, just like you'd get at the bakery and they are delicious. To keep them nice and chewy make sure you let them cool completely on the cookie sheet.

Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
Cook's Illustrated

Printable Version
2 1/8 cups bleached all-purpose flour (about 10 1/2 ounces)
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
12 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), melted and cooled slightly
1 cup brown sugar (light or dark), 7 ounces
1/2 cup granulated sugar (3 1/2 ounces)
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 - 2 cups chocolate chips or chunks (semi or bittersweet. Or use 1 c. chocolate chips and 1 cup M & M's.

1. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Adjust oven racks to upper- and lower-middle positions. Mix flour, salt, and baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.
2. Either by hand or with electric mixer, mix butter and sugars until thoroughly blended. Mix in egg, yolk, and vanilla. Add dry ingredients; mix until just combined. Stir in chips.
3. Form scant 1/4 cup dough into ball. Holding dough ball using fingertips of both hands, pull into two equal halves. Rotate halves ninety degrees and, with jagged surfaces exposed, join halves together at their base, again forming a single cookie, being careful not to smooth dough’s uneven surface. Place formed dough onto one of two parchment paper-lined 20-by-14-inch lipless cookie sheets, about nine dough balls per sheet. Smaller cookie sheets can be used, but fewer cookies can be baked at one time and baking time may need to be adjusted. (Dough can be refrigerated up to 2 days or frozen up to 1 month—shaped or not.)
4. Bake, reversing cookie sheets’ positions halfway through baking, until cookies are light golden brown and outer edges start to harden yet centers are still soft and puffy, 15 to 18 minutes (start checking at 13 minutes). (Frozen dough requires an extra 1 to 2 minutes baking time.) Cool cookies on cookie sheets. Serve or store in airtight container. Makes 18 cookies.

*I just baked one batch at a time and left them in the same position the whole time.*

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Lasagna Rolls

I had heard about lasagna rolls, but never attempted to make them until now. You basically take the filling that you would make for lasagna and spread it evenly over the cooked noodles and roll them up and bake them. This was delicious and even got the stamp of approval from my 1/2 Italian husband!
Lasagna Rolls
courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis

Bechmael Sauce:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 teaspoons all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups whole milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
Pinch ground nutmeg
1 (15-ounce) container whole milk ricotta cheese (I used low-fat and it still tasted good)
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
3 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, chopped
1 large egg, beaten to blend
3/4 teaspoon salt, plus more for salting water
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
12 uncooked lasagna noodles
2 cups marinara sauce (I used Dom DeLuise's recipe posted at the end)
1 cup shredded mozzarella (about 4 ounces)
To make the sauce: Melt the butter in a heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk for 3 minutes. Whisk in the milk. Increase the heat to medium-high. Whisk the sauce until it comes to a simmer and is thick and smooth, about 3 minutes. Whisk the salt, pepper, and nutmeg into the bechamel sauce.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
Whisk the ricotta, spinach, 1 cup Parmesan, prosciutto, egg, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl to blend.

Add a tablespoon or 2 of oil to a large pot of boiling salted water. Boil the noodles until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain. Arrange the noodles in a single layer on a baking sheet to prevent them from sticking.

Butter a 13-by-9-by-2-inch glass baking dish. Pour the bechamel sauce over the bottom of the prepared dish. Lay out 4 lasagna noodles on a work surface, then spread about 3 tablespoons of ricotta mixture evenly over each noodle. Starting at 1 end, roll each noodle like a jelly roll. Lay the lasagna rolls seam side down, without touching, atop the bechamelsauce in the dish. Repeat with the remaining noodles and ricotta mixture. Spoon 1 cup of marinara sauce over the lasagna rolls. Sprinkle the mozzarella and remaining 2 tablespoons of Parmesan over the lasagna rolls. Cover tightly with foil. Bake until heated through and the sauce bubbles, about 20 minutes. Uncover and bake until the cheese on top becomes golden, about 15 minutes longer. Let stand for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the remaining marinara sauce in a heavy small saucepan over medium heat until hot, and serve alongside.
Mammas Marinara Sauce
courtesy of Dom DeLuise
4 tablespoons olive oil
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 28-oz. cans ready-cut peeled tomatoes
1 6-oz. can tomato paste
4 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes
Salt and Pepper to taste
In a medius sauce pan, heat the olive oil and gently sauté the garlic. Add tomatoes, tomato paste and sun dried tomatoes. Add salt and pepper. Put on medium for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Makes about 2 quarts of sauce.
Posted By: Julia
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Saturday, June 6, 2009

Fruit Dip

I originally made this with my sister when we threw a surprise 60th birthday party for our Mom. I'm not sure where the original recipe came from, but I have been making it ever since and it is delicious!

Fruit Dip

1 jar marshmallow cream
1 container strawberry cream cheese (at room temperature)

Mix ingredients and serve!
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Delicious Cookies

Cookies are definitely my biggest soon as I bake them, I have to take what we don't eat into work, otherwise I'll finish them off myself! I came across these two recipes on and both turned out so delicious. The oatmeal raisin cookies called for ground cloves, which gave them such a good flavor and made my house smell like Christmas! Both cookies were just a little crispy on the outside, but mostly soft and chewy, just the way I like them. Perfect with an ice cold glass of milk!

Beth's Spicy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
courtesy of, Beth Sigworth

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup butter flavored shortening
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup raisins


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

In a large bowl, cream together the butter, butter flavored shortening, brown sugar, white sugar, eggs, and vanilla until smooth. Combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt; stir into the sugar mixture. Stir in the oats and raisins. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 10 to 12 minutes until light and golden. Do not overbake. Let them cool for 2 minutes before removing from cookie sheets to cool completely. Store in airtight container.

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies
courtesy of, Maureen Burr

1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 ounces white chocolate, chopped
1 (6.5 ounce) jar macadamia nuts, chopped


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

In a medium bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Stir in the egg and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt, stir into the creamed mixture. Finally, stir in the white chocolate and nuts. Drop cookies by heaping teaspoonfuls onto an ungreased cookie sheet, about 2 inches apart.

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, until lightly browned. Cool on wire racks. When cool, store in an airtight container.

Posted By: Julia

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Friday, June 5, 2009

Cinnamon Cake with Browned Butter Glaze

This is another recipe I snagged from Prudence Pennywise. She belongs to a group called TWD (Tuesday's with Dorie. Dorie Greenspan is a famous author/baker). Every Tuesday they make a different Dorie recipe. I have this cookbook and have been eyeing this recipe because originally it was a cinnamon cake with chocolate frosting. I love the chocolate/cinnamon combination but it had espresso in it and I wasn't sure how it would taste if I left it out. This girl is creative and tweaked it into a cinnamon cake with browned butter frosting. It was perfect. If you're not a big dessert fan, you'd probably like this as the cake is not overly sweet but the frosting is delicious and super easy and quick. Buttery, caramely and the perfect compliment to the moist cinnamon cake, this is a must try.
Cinnamon Cake with Browned Butter Glaze
Prudence Pennywise
1 and 1/4 cup sugar
1 and 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 and 1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspooon salt
1 cup buttermilk
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
For the glaze:
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 or 1/3 cup milk or cream
1 cup powdered sugar, if desired (I left this out)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a cupcake pan with about 16 liners, or grease an 8 inch square baking dish. In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients: sugar, cinnamon, flour, powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla and butter . Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and lightly blend. Spread batter into prepared pan. Bake for about 35 minutes for square pan, and about 20 minutes for cupcakes. To make glaze, melt butter in small saucepan. Watching closely, cook butter without stirring until browned. Stir in brown sugar to form thick mixture. For a glaze add the lesser amount of milk, for frosting add the greater. Add milk and stir until lump free. It's ready as a glaze. If you want it to be like frosting, add powdered sugar and beat until lumps are gone. Spoon over warm cake. This makes a 8x8 pan so if you want it in a 9x13 double the recipe.

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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Cranberry Spinach Salad

I love spinach salad. It seems like it goes with everything. Sometimes I make this basic recipe. Other times I fancy it up. It's so versatile. You can swap out the almonds for candied pecans or toasted pine nuts, trade the cranberries for strawberries, even add sliced chicken and make it into a main dish.

Cranberry Spinach Salad (basic)
adapted slightly from All Recipes

1 tablespoon butter
3/4 cup almonds, blanched and slivered
1 pound spinach, rinsed and torn into bite-size pieces
1 cup dried cranberries
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
1/2 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons minced onion
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used canola)

In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Cook and stir almonds in butter until lightly toasted. Remove from heat, and let cool.
In a large bowl, combine the spinach with the toasted almonds and cranberries.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the sesame seeds, poppy seeds, sugar, onion, paprika, white wine vinegar, cider vinegar, and vegetable oil. Toss with spinach just before serving.

*You can also toast almonds in the oven at 350 for 10 minutes , no butter required. Just watch them carefully.*

Cranberry Spinach Salad (Deluxe)
Follow the above instructions but add in:
red onions thinly sliced
grated swiss cheese
cooked and crumbled bacon
fresh sliced mushrooms
1 can mandarin oranges, drained
Posted by: Sallie
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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Weeknight Meal- Prudy Style

I love grilling this time of year and this meal was excellent. Mexican food is at the top of my list and this is a meal I will be making again. The chicken was moist and juicy with fabulous citrus flavor and a little kick from the jalapeno. The Spanish rice was just how I like it and so much better than the store bought packets. Just about as easy too. The best part though was the corn and black bean salad. I have made a similar recipe from Ina Garten but I actually preferred this one because it tasted much lighter. I added in some avocado and made mine into a rice bowl. I sliced the grilled chicken and then mixed in the rice and salad. I am seriously hoarding the leftovers for lunch tomorrow. Added bonus- this meal is so healthy. Most of the fat comes from the olive oil and avocado which are the good kind of fats. A great, light Mexican meal that is going to be showing up again on my menu really soon.

All recipes are courtesy of Prudence Pennywise

Cilantro Honey-Lime Grilled Chicken

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast (I doubled this for a family of 6) 1/3 c. lime juice plus 1 tsp. lime zest 4 tbsp. olive oil 4 cloves garlic minced or 1 tsp. garlic powder 1 chopped jalapeno or Serrano pepper, optional 1 tsp. each salt and black pepper 2 tbsp honey 1/3 c. chopped cilantro Rinse chicken and pat dry. (I also pounded mine in between two sheets of wax paper. This makes for more even cooking). In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, zest, olive oil, garlic, jalapeno, salt, pepper and honey. Set aside two tablespoons of mixture. Pour remaining mixture into Ziploc bag. Add chicken and cilantro and squish to coat. Marinate for at least 1 hour and up to 12 hours. Grill or broil chicken over medium high heat, about 4 minutes per side. Let rest for 5 minutes. Drizzle with reserved marinade and serve.

*I doubled the meat and just used one recipe of the marinade. I left all the chicken in the marinade and skipped the drizzling.*

Corn and Black Bean Salad with Cumin Lime Vinaigrette

1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed well
2 cups corn kernels, (frozen and thawed, or canned, or cut off the cob)
2 tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup red onion, minced
1 cup chopped cilantro
1 jalapeno pepper, minced-or less if you like it wimpy
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
juice and zest of one lime
1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper
1 avocado, optional

Combine beans, corn, tomatoes, onion, cilantro, jalapeno and avocado, if desired in a medium bowl. Sprinkle cumin and salt and pepper over the top. Drizzle with oil, lime juice and zest; taste for salt and pepper and adjust seasonings if necessary. Toss and serve.

Classic Mexican Red Rice

1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 white onion, minced
1 cup long grain white rice
1 and 3/4 c. chicken broth, stock or bouillon
6 tbsp. salsa divided

Heat oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and rice and saute until rice is toasted, about 5 minutes, stirring often. Add broth and 3 tbsp. of the salsa. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in remaining 3 tbsp. salsa. Let rest for 5 minutes. Fluff with fork and serve.

*I used Costco medium Salsa and the rice was very mild.*
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Monday, June 1, 2009

Sweet and Fluffy Malted Milk Waffles

I first read about adding malt powder to pancakes on the King Arthur Flour website. Apparently lots of popular pancake places use it in their pancake batter. When I found this recipe for malted milk waffles I couldn't wait to make them. They are everything their name implies. These waffles bake up light and fluffy and although my perfect waffle is crisp on the outside and soft on the inside these were really firm, yet soft so I didn't miss the crispiness at all.

Sweet and Fluffy Malted Milk Waffles

1 egg
1 cup flour
1 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
2 T. granulated sugar
3 -4 T. malted milk powder, to taste
3/4 cup milk
½ stick melted butter

Separate egg. Beat white until stiff peaks form. Set aside.Combine dry ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.Whisk together butter, milk and egg yolk until well combined. Stir in dry ingredients. When batter is smooth, fold in egg white.Heat a waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions and cook waffles accordingly. Makes 3-4 waffles depending on the size of your waffle maker.

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