Monday, December 24, 2007
1 unfrosted chocolate cake (use your own recipe or prepare your favorite boxed mix)
4 packages instant chocolate pudding, prepared
1 16 oz. package of Cool Whip Lite (or your favorite whipped cream)
1 package Oreo cookies, chopped and ground in a food processor to make crumbs
Break the chocolate cake into crumbly, bite-sized pieces. On the bottom of a large glass bowl, spread 1/3 of the cake pieces. Top with 1/3 of the chocolate pudding, spreading with spatula. Top pudding with 1/3 of the Cool Whip or whipped cream, spreading with spatula. Sprinkle Cool Whip with 1/3 of the Oreo crumbs. Continue to alternate the layers in this order for a total of two more times, finish off with a final layer of Oreo crumbs to garnish. Chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight before serving.
1/4 cup butter-flavored shortening
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sour cream
1 chopped, peeled tart apple
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon cold butter
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cream the shortening and sugar together in a large bowl with electric mixer. Add egg and vanilla extract. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, and then add to the creamed mixture. Add sour cream and continue to mix. Stir in chopped apple, and transfer batter into greased 8" square or 9" round baking dish. For topping, combine brown sugar and cinnamon and then cut in butter till crumbly. Mix in nuts and sprinkle topping mixture over batter. Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
This particular recipe will always make me think of all the wonderful Christmases I had during my childhood.
Eggnog recipe - makes 5 Bottles.
4 cans of condensed milk
5 cans of evaporated milk
1 dozen raw eggs
vanilla - 1-2 tbsp
nutmeg - 1 tsp
bacardi 1 small bottle (to taste)
Blend together all ingredients except for condensed milk. Pour condensed milk in while evaporated milk, eggs, vanilla, rum and nutmeg are mixing. Chill for one hour and serve cold.
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Leg of Lamb
2 cups red wine (pinot noir)
2 cups beef broth
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup onions
1/2 cup chives
1/3 cup of rosemary
1/3 cup of chive
1/4 cup of thyme
salt and pepper to taste
Manchego Cheese Smashed Potatos
cups of Manchego cheese (shredded)
Baby red potatos (cut in halves or fourths)
salt and pepper to taste
First, mix all the ingredients for the leg of lamb and marinade for 2-3 hours before baking. Bake at about 400 degrees for about 30-45 mins wiht marinade. Then, boil the red potatos until somewhat tender (you'll see the skin beginning to peel off), drain the water, and set aside. Shred the entire manchego cheese wedge, like below. Then mix all ingredients for the smashed potatos in a large pot and smash it altogether. No need to puree, leave some potato chunks.
Voila! Dinner is served!
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
Sorry that my recipes are a little sucky since I dont measure anything, but they are full of heart and love:)
So I hadnt been to the grocery store in a long time but I had to make dinner for Davey and I last night. (In case you dont know, I live in a small NYC apartment with my fiance. My kitchen is only big enough for myself and my stepstool. And while Im in there, I cant open the oven and the refrigerator at the same time. So cooking is more of a challenge for me than you would think!).
Anyway, I raided my freezer/fridge/pantry and found some stuff that I figured I could use for my chicken dish.
1 cup of olive oil
1 chopped onion
4/5 cloves of garlic
handfull of capers
salt and pepper to taste
I combined a cup of olive oil, 1 chopped onion, 4 or 5 cloves of garlic, a handfull of capers, salt and pepper.
I had frozen chicken breasts which I defrosted. I put them in a casserole dish and then I poured a mixture of olive oil over it. I baked it in the oven until it was cooked. It came out delicious!!!
Then I had to slap together a side dish, which for me usually consists of rice and whatever veggies are around. Unfortunately, I was out of rice and the only veggies I had were carrots. I hate the texture of carrots. I also found a box of elbow pasta.
about 4 carrots
1 can of tomato sauce
2 or 3 cloves of garlic
2 tbsp of Fage yogurt
box of elbow pasta
a few tbsp of olive oil
So I put some carrots in my mini food chopper and chopped them up as small as possible. I put those in a pot with some olive oil and chopped garlic and sauteed for a few minutes without burning the garlic. Then I added a can of tomato sauce and two tbsp of greek Fage yogurt. I let that simmer till it was just right. I poured that over the elbows and enjoyed:) This is a great way to get all those vitamins from veggies without having to taste them!
Thursday, November 1, 2007
I got together with my co-worker again to whip up some cupcakes. . .Halloween cupcakes that is! I'm trying to be all health conscious, I know what you're thinking! "Health conscious and you're making cupcakes????" I know, I know, it sounds bad, but the chocolate cupcakes below are a Weight Watcher's inspired recipe, using only a box of cake mix and a 15 0z can of Libby's Canned Pumpkin (and I added about ¼ cup of water b/c the batter looked too thick). Can't ask for a more simple recipe. Using a regular box of cake mix, the cupcakes without frosting come out to 2 points each. BUT, did you know that Pillsbury is now making a "Splenda" cake mix? I bet you didn't :) Well, you know what that means? That by using the splenda mix, the cupcakes would be less points and I could actually frost them now! Yippie, FROSTING! But wait, that's not all, Pillsbury is also making a "Splenda" Frosting! It's a little runny, but tastes pretty darn good! I kid you not! People thought we were kidding when we told them they were WW cupcakes! LOL! A little TIP: Once you fill the cups with the batter, using a spatula sprayed with "Pam" pat the batter down a bit so that the cupcakes bake more uniformly. This made 12 nice sized cupcakes! (I'm thinking they were probably 1.5 pt and another .5 for the frosting. Not BAD I think! The fondant halloween medalions would be more points, but I don't eat those, so I'm not counting points for them ;) Yum-O! So there you have it kids, YOU can eat "CUPCAKES"! Here are a few pics, many thanks to Mari for joining in on the Halloween baking fun!
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Friday, October 12, 2007
Last night was meatloaf night. I found the recipe online, and even though it was time consuming, it is very easy to make. On the side, I made the Cheddar Mashed Potatoes posted below... by the way, they are very good too!
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 red pepper, seeded, small diced
1 onion, diced
2 teaspoons (about 3 cloves) chopped garlic
1 pound ground beef
3/4 cup bread crumbs
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped basil leaves
1 tablespoon chopped parsley leaves
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 cup marinara sauce
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in medium sauté pan over medium heat and add the peppers, onions, and garlic. Sauté until just soft, remove to a plate and cool.
When the peppers and onions are cool, combine all the remaining ingredients together except for the marinara. Pack the meat mixture into an oiled loaf pan, if you do not have aloaf pan, form the meat mixture into a loaf shape on an oiled oven tray or baking dish. Top the marinara making sure to spread evenly over the top.
Bake for approximately 50 to 60 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees F in the middle of the meatloaf. Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes. Slice and serve.
The cake turned out great, a bit time consuming, but well worth it. DH and his family and friends loved, loved, loved the cake. And I too enjoyed it (not a huge fan of bananas); it isn't over powering as I thought it would be.
The cake is easy to make, but time consuming; lots of steps. For those of you interested, here you go:
1 ½ sticks plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
1 2/3 cups of all purpose flour, plus more for pans
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
3 very ripe bananas, mashed, plus 3 ripe bananas, sliced lengthwise, for filling (I actually cut them in small circles because it is easier)
¼ cup sour cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 2/3 cups, plus ¼ cup sugar
4 large eggs
Mascarpone frosting (recipe follows)
Caramel Sauce (recipe follows)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter two 9x2 cake pans; line bottom with parchment. Butter parchment and dust with flour, tapping out excess; set aside.
Into a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a small bowl, stir together mashed bananas, sour cream, and vanilla. Set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat 1 ½ sticks butter and 1 2/3 cups sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. With mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture in tow parts, beating until combined after each, 2 to 3 minutes. Using rubber spatula, fold in the reserved banana mixture, being careful not to overmix.
Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Bake, rotating the pans halfway through, until cakes are golden brown and cake tester inserted in the centers comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer pans to wire rack to cool 20 minutes. Invert cakes onto the rack; peel off the parchment. Reinvert cakes, and let them cool completely, top sides up.
Sprinkle remaining ¼ cup sugar into large skillet; cook over high heat, shaking the pan occasionally, until sugar is caramelized. Remove from heat; stir in remaining 3 tablespoons butter until melted. Return pan to medium heat. Add the sliced bananas; cook until slices start to turn brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Gently turn the bananas, and cook over medium-high heat until browned, about 2 minutes.
Using a serrated knife, trip tops of layers to make level. Place one laker on cake plate; arrange caramelized bananas on top. Place remaining layer on top. Using a large offset spatula, spread Mascarpone frosting over entire cake, swirling to completely cover. Drizzle with Caramel sauce over the top of the cake, or serve some alongside each slice. Serve immediately, or refrigerate, covered with a cake dome, for up to 3 days.
1 pound mascarpone cheese
1 ¼ cups heavy cream
½ cup confectioner’s sugar
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the mascarpone, cream, and confectioner’s sugar on medium speed until medium-soft peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes. Be careful not to overbeat. Use immediately.
½ cup sugar
½ cup heavy cream
Prepare an ice bath; set aside. Cook sugar in medium saucepan over medium-high heat until it starts to melt around edges; then shake pan to melt remaining sugar. Continue to cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until golden amber, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Stirring constantly, add cream in a slow, steady stream (it will splatter). If necessary, return pan to heat for a few seconds, stirring until mixture is smooth. Place caramel in a bowl in the ice bath; let stand until cold, stirring frequently.
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
Hello ladies. Since I'm on a 2 wk vacation in between jobs, I've taken up cooking. Last night's attempt was Chicken Parmesan with pasta, and boy oh boy was it good! I'll have to say, my best meal yet (which doesn't say much, since I cook about a meal week). Either way, it was super easy... I cooked some pasta with alfredo sauce on the side (no special receipe there... followed the box instructions).
1/2 cup milk
seasoned bread crumbs
8 slices mozzarella cheese, or more
1 jar (16 oz) spaghetti sauce
Monday, October 1, 2007
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
-Tomato, Basil Chicken Sausages
-Multigrain/Whole Weat Angel Hair pasta
First, boil the pasta in water with a bit of olive oil and salt. Strain and set aside when done.
Sautee the tomato, basil chicken sausages in olive oil. When the sausages are almost done, add the mushrooms, broccoli, and onions. Add a tad more olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Also, add seasoning-salt, pepper, garlic powder, basil, parsley, etc to taste.
Now, add butter, cream cheese, milk, one egg (after whisking), a little olive oil, garlic powder, salt, pepper, basil, a little parsley in a saucepan and stir frequently until the butter and cream cheese have melted to make an alfredo-style sauce. Add pasta and continue to stir.
Serve pasta, sausage, and vegetables together to make a delicious meal.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, beaten
1 cup Italian-style bread crumbs
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 lb. thinly-sliced chicken breasts
Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 lemon, cut in half
In three wide, shallow bowls, place the following: in bowl #1, the flour. In bowl #2, the beaten eggs. And in bowl #3, the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese, whisked together to mix thoroughly. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper to taste. In a large saute pan, melt the butter in the oil under medium heat. While the butter melts and the oil gets hot, dredge each chicken breast in flour, then dip in eggs, allowing excess egg to drip off, and finally coat in bread crumb/Parmesan mixture, pressing the mixture in to coat well. Once the butter is melted and the oil is hot, place the chicken breast in the pan and cook thoroughly, about 7 minutes on each side or until the juices run clear. Remove cooked chicken breasts from pan and drizzle over the juice from half of the lemon.
Butter & Corn Rice
1 cup rice
2 cups water
3 tablespoons butter
1 15 oz. can of corn
Kosher salt to taste
Cook the rice in the water along with 2 tablespoons of butter. When rice is fully cooked, add the remaining tablespoon of butter and as much of the can of corn as desired (I use about 3/4ths of it). Add salt to taste and mix well. Allow the rice to continue to to warm under low heat until the corn is warm and and butter is fully melted.
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/4 cups flour
2 tsp kosher salt
3 Tbsp butter, melted
Whisk together the eggs and milk in a large bowl. Whisk in the flour, salt, and butter. Stir the batter until well blended. Divide the batter among the cups of a 12-cup nonstick muffin pan, filling them two-thirds full. Place the pan in a cold oven and heat the oven to 425 degrees. After 20 minutes, turn the oven down to 350 degrees and continue to bake until the popovers are billowing out of each cup and golden brown, 12-15 minutes more. Serve at once.
* I halved this recipe since it was just my husband and I.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
I was raised by individuals that believed in takeout rather than recipes. Not to mention the fact that I manage to knock down everything in my path and hurt myself whenever possible. But, ever since I moved in with my FI, who is a great cook, I've wanted to learn. Yes, our roles are definitely reversed. ;)
So before I take on cooking, I've decided to take on baking! I'm a huge fan of Pumpkin anything (including the smashing kind), so when I stumbled on this recipe from Martha Stewart for Pumpkin cupcakes I had to take my chances.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon coarse salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin puree
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice; set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together, brown sugar, granulated sugar, butter, and eggs. Add dry ingredients, and whisk until smooth. Whisk in pumpkin puree.
- Divide batter evenly among liners, filling each about halfway. Bake until tops spring back when touched, and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes, rotating pans once if needed. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely.
I have to say, they came out great and oh-so moist!
I definitely deserve a pat on the back!
Hope you girls can enjoy this recipe as well :)
Friday, September 14, 2007
She originally used Lamb but I made it with turkey since that's what I had at home. These burgers are perfect for lunch or dinner. I paired them with home made french fries that I cut and fried in some vegetable oil.
I had fun making these burgers but boy did I love eating them. They were soooo delicious. Enjoy!!!
1/2 cup plain dried bread crumbs
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons whole milk
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano
1/4 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 pound ground lamb (I used turkey)
6 large slices prosciutto, sliced medium-thin (for wrapping the burgers)
1/4 cup olive oil
Fresh basil leaves, for topping each burger
Fresh tomato slices, for topping each burger
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Balsamic vinegar, for drizzling
In a large bowl combine the bread crumbs, parsley, egg, milk, cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, salt, and pepper, Stir to combine.
Add the lamb and stir until incorporated.
Divide the mixture into 6 (1-inch) thick burgers.
Place the slices of prosciutto on a cutting board or piece of parchment paper.
Place 1 lamb burger in the center of each slice of prosciutto and wrap the prosciutto around the burger.
Place a large, heavy skillet over medium heat.
Add the olive oil and heat for 2 minutes.
Place the lamb burgers, prosciutto-covered side down in the pan and cook over medium heat until the prosciutto is golden, about 6 to 8 minutes.
Turn the burgers and finish cooking, about 6 to 8 minutes more.
Remove the burgers from the pan and place on a serving platter or individual plates.
I baked the burgers on 350 degrees for about 30 minutes instead of cooking them on the skillet. This also gave me time to make the french fries.
Top each burger with 2 to 3 basil leaves, 1 to 2 slices of tomato, and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I placed my burgers on top of a french loaf that I cut in half.
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
3 chicken breasts pounded thin
3/4 cup shredded cheese (mozzerella, swiss, gorgonzola, whatever you want)
sazon completa: enough to lightly cover each side (about 1 tsp.)
paprika (a dash on top)
2 tbs. paremesan (grated)
1/4 cup shake and bake or italian-seasoned bread crumbs
1 packet bernaise sauce
2 ounces feta crumbled or gorgonzola
1 small can mushrooms
Sprinkle sazon completa and paprika after pounding chicken breasts about 1 tsp. each.
Take about a 1/4 cup of cheese and stuff the centers of each breast, roll & tuck underneath (use toothpicks if you want to hold them together). Mix shake & bake or breadcrumbs with parmesan and set aside. Sprinkle sazon completa on each chicken breast, just a dash and sprinkle the top of each with bread crumb/cheese mix. Bake at 325 degrees for about 40-45 minutes.
Make bernaise sauce according to instructions on packet. Add feta and mushrooms. glaze on top of chicken once they're out of the oven.
Mashed Potatoes (quite simple really, but I'll type it out anyway)
3 large Idaho potatoes
1 tbs butter
3 tbs sour cream
salt & pepper to taste
1/4 cup milk or buttermilk
Cut potatoes into 1 inch thick slices and cut slices in half. Boil pieces until tender (about 30 min). Drain water and in same pot add butter, milk, sour cream and mash until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste.
This weekend we celebrated my youngest niece's 11th birthday. She's had braces for about a year and I'd been eagerly waiting to make her this cake. Instead of writing Happy Birthday or her name on the cake board, I went with "Fabulous" because her and her sister love those Orbit Gum commercials. It was vanilla rum cake with buttercream frosting and fondant design.
The Birthday girl loved it! It was pretty good if I may say so myself! :) Best of all everyone wolfed it down!
Remember: For A Good Clean Feeling, No Matter What - Orbit Gum! Fabulous!
Sunday, September 9, 2007
- Chicken Breasts
- Baby Spinach leaves
- Sun Dried Tomatoes
- Shredded Mozzarella
- Prosciutto ham
- Parmesan Alfredo Sauce
- Olive Oil
- Kosher Salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Slice each chicken breast in half
- Spinach will be first layer use maybe 3 or 4 leaves
- Next, slice the sun dried tomatoes if they are two big to evenly distribute them on the spinach
- Next, add a slice of prosciutto
- Then, add in the shredded Mozzarella (add however much you want)
- Finally, roll it up and put in the baking pan
- After, you are done with all the them, drizzle some olive oil and salt and pepper on them.
- Pop in the oven for about 45 minutes.
- I heated up some alfredo sauce and drizzled a little over the chicken.
Note** I use organic meats, vegetables, and oil. But you can use whatever you like.
As for the Rice, it is wild rice and it comes in a box at publix.
The broccoli and cheese is easy, I am sure you girls know how to do that. I bought the frozen kind. =)
Friday, September 7, 2007
I had some Cuban bread that had gotten stale and got really hard.
I was about to dump it when I realized I could make yummy bruschetta with my new toaster oven.
Here's the recipe:
Stale Cuban Bread
- Olive Oil
- Parmesan Cheese (grated)
Cut the bread into thin slices. Drizzle some olive oil over the pieces of bread and sprinkle some salt, pepper, and basil. Cut tomatos into small cubes and place over bread. Repeat step 2-add more olive oil, salt, pepper, basil and now you can add some parmesan cheese.
Bake in toaster oven for about 15 mins and then switch to toast (on the settings).
Here, I served with the lemon, dill chicken from a previously posted recipe and broccoli, cheese rice (from a box).
Corn, Tomato & Parmesan Risotto
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup Arborio rice
1/3 cup dry white wine
½ teaspoon kosher salt (or more, to taste)
5 ½ cups heated chicken stock
1 ¾ cups (1 15.25 oz can) fresh corn
1 8-oz. can tomato sauce
½ cup grated Parmesan-Romano cheese
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
Freshly ground pepper
Heat olive oil in saucepan under medium heat. Add minced garlic and sauté for a minute or two. Add rice and stir to thoroughly coat with oil and garlic. Deglaze with white wine and continue to cook until wine is almost totally absorbed. Add salt. Begin to slowly add heated chicken stock with a ladle, allowing the stock to almost fully absorb before adding the next ladle-full, and stirring constantly. When the rice has cooked for about 15 minutes and most of the stock has been incorporated, add the corn and tomato sauce along with any remaining liquid. Continue to stir and cook until most of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is creamy. Add butter, cheese, and pepper to taste and stir to incorporate. Serve.
heating up my chicken stock
coating the rice with oil and garlic
deglazing with white wine
one ladle at a time ;)
mmmmmm...starting to look good, but it's not quite there yet
adding the corn
now the tomato sauce
and about 20 minutes later, we're done! you know your risotto is done when the watery liquid has been fully absorbed and all that's left is the creamy consistency...also, the rice should be REALLY, really tender
Giada de Laurentiis’s Chicken Piccata
2 skinless and boneless chicken breasts, butterflied and then cut in half (*i bought chicken breasts that were already very thinly sliced...big time time saver*)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups all purpose flour, for dredging
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/4 cup brined capers, rinsed
1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped (*i leave out the capers and parsley*)
Season chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess.
In a large 10 or 12-inch skillet over medium high heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 3 tablespoons olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add 2 pieces of chicken and cook for 3 minutes. When chicken is browned, flip and cook other side for 3 minutes. Remove and transfer to plate. Melt 2 more tablespoons butter and add another 2 tablespoons olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add the other 2 pieces of chicken and brown both sides in same ma nner. Remove pan from heat and add chicken to the plate.