Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Brownie Puppy Chow

This is good.  I'm not sure I'd make it again because I'm not sure the brownie mix adds that much that I had to waste the rest of the brownie mix.  However, it is a fun snack to make.  I didn't add the candy corn because my kids don't like it. 

Puppy Chow

8 C. rice cereal squares (Chex)
1 1/2 C. chocolate chips or Melts
1/2 C. peanut butter, creamy (You can omit this, see Note below)
3/4 C. powdered sugar
3/4 C. brownie mix
2 large plastic bags
2 1/2 C. Reese's Pieces, optional
2 1/2 C. Candy Corn, optional
1. Place Chex cereal in a large bowl and put your powdered sugar in one large plastic bag and your brownie mix in another. (It helps to have everything ready to go.)
2. Put your chocolate chips/melts and peanut butter in a microwave proof bowl and heat for 30-50 seconds and stir until smooth.
3. Pour over Chex cereal and gently fold until coated in chocolatey goodness.
4. Put half of your chocolatey cereal in one plastic bag (with the powdered sugar) and then other half in your other bag (with the brownie mix).
5. Seal each bag and shake until covered.
6. Dump onto a cookie sheet to cool.
7. Serve with Reese's Pieces and Candy Corn for color!
NOTE: For peanut allergies, omit peanut butter and use MELTS for your chocolate, these will melt down more easily than chocolate chips, and increase the amount to 2 cups

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Baked Chicken Fajitas

Another Pinterest recipe:)  These were excellent - we really enjoyed them.  I am not crazy about the packaged fajita seasoning but I liked this.  I baked it closer to 30 minutes and used 2 1/2 chicken breasts cut into strips.  Very good.

Oven Baked Chicken Fajitas
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilies (I used Rotel)
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 large bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 12 flour tortillas
  • Toppings such as cheese, sour cream, and guacamole – if desired
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place chicken strips in a greased 13×9 baking dish.
  2. In a small bowl combine the oil, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, dried oregano, and salt
  3. Drizzle the spice mixture over the chicken and stir to coat.
  4. Next add the tomatoes, peppers, and onions to the dish and stir to combine.
  5. Bake uncovered for 20-25 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender. Serve on tortillas with desired toppings.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Trisha Yearwood's Shortbread

I really wanted to like this.  I've never had shortbread and wanted to give it a try.  It smelled so good and looked good.  I loved the almond sugar topping.  It was good but SO rich.  I almost felt sick after I ate a super small piece.  I don't think I'd make it again, although my son and husband like it. 
Trisha Yearwood's Shortbread



Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 10-inch cast-iron skillet with aluminum foil and spray the foil with cooking spray.
In a large mixing bowl, stir 1 1/2 cups of the sugar into the melted butter. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Sift the flour and salt onto the batter. Add the flavoring and stir well. Pour the batter into the skillet. Top with sliced almonds and the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. Bake until slightly brown on top, about 35 minutes. Cool the shortbread in the skillet. When cool, use the foil to lift the shortbread from the skillet; remove the foil before serving.

Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Muffins

I didn't have one of them but everyone seemed to like them.  They came out good.  There were a lot of steps.  I didn't really follow the steps but just kind of threw them together.

Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Muffins


For Crumb Topping:

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cold butter, cut into cubes
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For Cupcakes:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips, divided
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • powdered sugar, for topping


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a muffin tin with paper cupcake liners.
  2. To prepare topping, in a large bowl, whisk together flour and sugar. Add butter, and using two a pastry cutter or two knives, cut the butter into the flour until it forms pea-sized chunks. Sprinkle vanilla extract over top and continue to cut to combine. You can use your hands if needed to incorporate any remaining dry flour until it comes together into moist, clumpy lumps. If the topping gets too dough-like, sprinkle over a tablespoon and break up the topping into chunks. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. To prepare cupcakes, whisk together flour, cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Spoon 1-2 tablespoons of flour mixture into a small bowl; toss with 1/2 cup of chocolate chips until evenly coated.
  4. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in vanilla, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  5. Slowly add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with 2 additions of the buttermilk, starting and ending with the dry ingredients.
  6. Fold in flour-coated chocolate chips.
  7. Divide batter into cupcake liners, about 3 tablespoons per cupcake (a large cookie scoop, slightly underfilled, is the perfect amount of batter). You want each liner just over half full (do not overfill, these cupcakes are delicate and so you want to fill them less than you normally would).
  8. Generously sprinkle the crumb topping evenly over each cupcake, breaking up any large chunks.
  9. Bake cupcakes for 13 to 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  10. Remove from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips over top of cupcakes. Let cool for 5 to 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  11. Just before serving, sprinkle generously with powdered sugar. Cupcakes are best the day they are made, but will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Read more at http://www.loveandoliveoil.com/2013/09/buttermilk-chocolate-chip-crumb-cupcakes.html

Spicy Sausage Pasta

I really enjoyed this.  Of all the recipes I tried this weekend, this was my favorite.  I used a spicy sausage and used nonfat evaporated milk instead of the cream.  I will definetely make this again.

Spicy Sausage Pasta

1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb smoked sausage
1.5 cups diced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 (10 oz) can Ro-Tel tomatoes and green chiles, Mild
1/2 cup heavy cream
8 oz penne pasta
1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper, each
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
1/3 cup thinly sliced scallions
1. Add olive oil to an oven-safe skillet over medium high heat until just smoking. Add sausage and onions and cook until lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
2. Add broth, tomatoes, cream, pasta, salt and pepper and stir. Bring to a boil, cover skillet, and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until pasta is tender, about 15 minutes.
3. Remove skillet from heat and stir in 1/2 cup cheese. Top with remaining cheese and sprinkle with scallions. Broil until cheese is melted, spotty brown, and bubbly.

Read more at http://www.kevinandamanda.com/recipes/dinner/spicy-sausage-pasta.html#ixzz2iMFR9zpd

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Philly Cheesesteak Soup

This soup was rather bland.  I cooked it in the slow cooker minus the milk.   About a 1/2 hour before serving, I thickened the milk with 1 tbsp of butter and 1 tbsp of flour on the stove and then added to the slow cooker.  It was ok, but not on the "make again soon list".

Philly cheesesteak soup

--1 pound thinly cut beef strips (I used beef cube steaks)
--4 cups beef broth
--2 cups skim or 2% milk
--1 T butter
--1 yellow onion, cut in chunks--2 bell peppers (I used one green, one red)--2 t gluten free Worcestershire sauce
--3 cloves chopped garlic
--1/2 t black pepper--1 t kosher salt--8oz provolone cheese (to add at the very end)

The Directions.

Add the 1 tablespoon of butter to your crockpot and turn it on high to melt. Cut up your meat and add it to the crock, swirling it into the butter to coat. Add the chopped peppers, onion, and garlic. Add the Worcestershire, salt and pepper. Stir in the beef broth and milk.

Cover and cook on low for 7-9 hours, or on high for 5-6. The soup is done when the meat has reached the desired tenderness.

Before serving, stir in the provolone cheese. It will melt in stringy chunks---yum.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Captain Crunch Pancakes

These came out really well.  I was leary of the syrup because it was TOO sweet.  My husband really liked it on them at first but then on the 2nd helping it because too much.  The pancakes were really good though - a nice change from a traditional pancake.  I would make these again.  They were pretty simple to make.

Captain Crunch Pancakes

Vanilla Butter
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
½ teaspoon vanilla bean or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon kosher salt

½ cup Cap'n Crunch cereal, plus more to finish
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1½ tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1¼ cups whole milk
2 large eggs, lightly whisked
6 tablespoons melted unsalted butter, plus more for the skillet

Condensed-Milk Syrup
1 cup condensed milk
¼ cup heavy cream
Pinch kosher salt

1. Make the vanilla butter: In a medium bowl, mix together the butter and vanilla until well combined. Refrigerate while making the pancakes.
2. Make the pancakes: In a food processor, add the cereal and pulse until it is ground to a fine powder. Transfer to a medium bowl and add the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs and melted butter. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients just until combined.
3. Set a griddle or large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Grease lightly with a bit of melted butter and add ¼-cup spoonfuls of batter to the pan, making sure to space the pancakes at least 2 inches apart. Once bubbles begin to form on the top of the pancakes, after 4 to 5 minutes, carefully flip them and cook until the second side is golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Repeat with the remaining batter until it is all used.
4. Make the condensed-milk syrup: In a medium bowl, whisk together the condensed milk, heavy cream and salt.
5. Serve the pancakes with the vanilla butter and condensed-milk syrup and top with extra Cap'n Crunch cereal.

Read more: http://www.tastingtable.com/entry_detail/chefs_recipes/9412//Cereal_sneaks_outside_the_bowl.htm#ixzz2h2PJF9i5

Read more: http://www.tastingtable.com/entry_detail/chefs_recipes/9412//Cereal_sneaks_outside_the_bowl.htm#ixzz2h2PDIcm9

Turkey Swedish Meatballs

These were ok.  But they were a lot of work.  I made the pumpernickel bread by hand and that probably added to the work.  I just really wasn't crazy about the sweet/texture of the meatballs.  I did double the gravy which I'm very glad I did.  The gravy was really good (I didn't add the worcesthire as I was afraid it would be too spicy).

Turkey Swedish Meatballs (from food network magazine)
For the meatballs:
  • 3 cups packed torn pumpernickel bread
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 6 small shallots, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 1/4 pounds lean ground turkey
  • 1 large egg
  • Cooking spray
For the gravy:
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • Mashed potatoes, for serving (optional)
  • Chopped fresh parsley and/or chives, for topping
Make the meatballs: Pulse the bread in a food processor to make fine crumbs. Add the milk and Worcestershire sauce and pulse to make a paste; set aside.
Heat the butter and vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat; add the shallots and cook, stirring, until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Add the apple, garlic, cinnamon, 1 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper and cook until the apple is tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in the breadcrumb mixture and cook, stirring, until thickened, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool completely.
Add the turkey and egg to the bowl and beat with a mixer on lowspeed until well combined, about 4 minutes. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. Dampen your hands and form the meat mixture into 36 balls (about1 inch each). Arrange on the prepared baking sheet and bake until lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the gravy: Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and whisk to make a smooth paste, about 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in the chicken broth, then add the Worcestershire sauce. Cook, whisking, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the meatballs and simmer until firm and cooked through, about 10 minutes. Serve over mashed potatoes and top with parsley and/or chives.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Good Ol' Homemade Brownies

I made these brownies last night and they turned out well. I halved the recipe and baked them in an 8 inch cake pan for about 27 minutes. They are VERY chocolatly and not as sweet as a store bought mix. I would make them again kids actually requested them a 2nd night in a row:)

Good Ol' Homemade Brownies


1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 1/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 1/4 cups cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon espresso powder, optional
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips


Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9x13 baking dish.
In small saucepan over low heat, melt butter completely. Stir in sugar and continue cooking for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. Do not allow sugar mixture to boil.
Pour butter mixture into a large bowl or stand mixer, beat in cocoa powder, eggs, salt, baking powder, espresso powder, and vanilla extract. Mix until well combined.
Stir in the flour and chocolate chips until well combined.
Spread into prepared pan (batter will be very thick and sticky) and bake for about 30 minutes, until a tester comes out mostly clean. The edges should be set and the center should still look slightly moist, but not uncooked. Cool on a wire rack.

Read more at http://www.bunsinmyoven.com/2009/10/15/good-ol-homemade-brownies/#MiUDCIz0zq2BCKt4.99