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