Saturday, January 30, 2010

Chicken Veggie Stew with Dumplings

This came about from one COLD evening. I love soup, unfortunately, my hubbie does not. But if
I add something more to the meal, he is happy. So I tried my hand at dumplings and made a yummy chicken stew.

1 pound chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 onion, chopped
2 cups chicken broth
5 red potatoes, scrubbed and diced
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup whole-wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoons butter, melted
2 Tablespoons parsley
2 Tablespoons chives
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups frozen peas

Cook the chicken in a stock pot, until completely cooked through. Add the onion and cook until softened. Add the broth and potatoes, bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the potatoes are tender.

Meanwhile, make the dumpling dough. Whisk together the whole-wheat flour, baking powder, milk, butter, parsley, chives and garlic. Stir just until a soft dough forms. Set aside.

Once the potatoes are softened, stir in the frozen peas. Drop the dumpling dough, by Tablespoonfuls, onto the surface of the simmering stew. Cover and simmer for 8 minutes. Uncover and simmer until the dumplings are double in size, about 3 more minutes.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Choc-o-licious Cupcakes

Oh, these are so amazing for a nice chocolate fix. I took my recipe for The Best Freakin' Chocolate Cake EVER! and turned them into cupcakes. They went very quickly at my sister-in-law's baby shower. These cupcakes melt in your mouth and will make you oh-so-happy! I topped them off with a chocolate ball just to make them a little more "fancy"! This recipe makes 36 cupcakes.

3 cups brown sugar
1 cup butter
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 2/3 cups flour
3/4 cup cocoa
1 Tablespoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cup sour cream
1 1/3 cup boiling water

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cupcakes pans with liners or spray with non-stick cooking spray. I made 24 regular cupcakes and 24 mini cupcakes with batter left over from this recipe.

Cream the brown sugar and butter together. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each egg. Beat on high speed until light and fluffy. Blend in the vanilla.

Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Add alternatively with sour cream. Mix on low just until combined.

Stir in the water until well blended. Make sure to scrap the bottom and sides of the bowl to get all the batter. Pour into cupcake pans filling about 3/4 full. Bake for about 15 minutes.

Note: This batter will not raise as much as other batters.

Cool completely, then frost with chocolate frosting.


Chocolate Frosting

1/2 cup butter
3 - 1 ounce squares each of unsweetened and semi-sweet chocolate (6 squares total)
5 cups powdered sugar (I usually need more)
1 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla

In a saucepan, melt the butter and chocolate over low heat. Cool for several minutes.

In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar, sour cream and vanilla. Then add the melted chocolate and beat until smooth. Frost away!

Shirley Temple Cupcakes

I remember as a kid, my family took a trip somewhere, and my siblings and I got to drink Shirley Temple drinks. It was obviously a big thing for me because I have no idea where we went or what we did, but I remember the drink. Well, this memory floated across my mind as I was thinking of what flavor of cupcakes to make for my sister-in-law's baby shower. So I thought I'd try a cupcake version. First, I had to do a little research online for what exactly goes into a Shirley Temple drink. It's a very simple drink, 7-up and grenadine with a cherry on top. grenadine is available at any grocery store. You will find it in the aisle with the mixers. Of course, it's non-alcoholic! These cupcakes turned out perfect. I hope you enjoy them. This recipe makes 36 cupcakes.

1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup 7-up (or any lemon lime drink)
3/4 cup grenadine
maraschino cherries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Fill cupcake pans with liners or spray with non-stick cooking spray. I made 24 regular-size cupcakes, and 24 mini-cupcakes with this recipe.

Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time; beating well after each addition. Then add the vanilla. Add the flour and baking soda. Add the 7-up and grenadine. Scrape the bottom of your bowl well to make sure it is well mixed.

Pour batter into prepared pans, filling 3/4 full. Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown around the edges. The cupcakes will sink if you take them out too early. They don't need to be dark, but there should be golden browning around the edges.

Once the cupcakes have cooled, frost with grenadine buttercream.


Grenadine Buttercream


1 cup butter
4 cups powdered sugar
4 Tablespoons grenadine

Cream all ingredients together until well combined. If the buttercream is too thick, add more grenadine. If it is too thin, add more powdered sugar.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Poppyseed Bread

This is a childhood favorite of mine. I can't believe I haven't made it for my blog before! I always find store bought poppyseed bread/muffins to be dry but this recipe nevers turns out that way. It's always moist and delicious and is always eaten fast at our house.

3 cups flour
2 1/3 cup sugar
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3 eggs
1 1/2 cup milk
1 1/3 cup oil
1 1/2 Teaspoon poppyseed
1 1/2 teaspoon each of vanilla, almond and butter flavorings

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Spray 2 bread pans with non-stick spray.

Mix all ingredients together until completely combined. Pour into the prepared pans. Bake for 1 hour. Cool for 10 minutes and then glaze. Allow the bread to sit, in the pans, for 1 hour before removing, or they will be gooey inside.

GLAZE:
1/2 teaspoon each of vanilla, almond and butter flavorings
1/4 cup orange juice concentrate
3/4 cup sugar

Mix the ingredients in a saucepan. Heat until the sugar dissolves. Cool before putting on the poppyseed bread.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Asian Coleslaw

I found this recipe the last time I bought ginger and have been dying to try it. It was totally worth the wait. One note about it: this is MUCH better the day after you make it. So for a yumminess maximum, make it the day before. I loved it with the Asian Steak Marinade. I thought it made an amazing salad!

2 Tablespoons canola oil
2 Tablespoons orange juice
2 Tablespoons rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 cups shredded cabbage
1 small red pepper, julienned
3 oz. pea pods, julienned
1 unpeeled pear, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 teaspoon sesame seeds, toasted

Mix the oil, orange juice, vinegar, sugar, ginger and salt until well blended.

Mix the cabbage, red pepper, pea pods, and pear in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Sprinkle with sesame seeds before serving.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Asian Steak Marinade

This marinade is delicious! We were having friends over and my hubbie wanted steak. I love steak when it's marinated and I was dying to try this Asian Slaw (recipe coming soon)...so I came up with this marinade. Enjoy.

For every pound of steak:

1/3 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup orange juice
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/8 teaspoon ginger
1 clove garlic, minced

Mix all ingredients together until brown sugar is dissolved. Pour into a ziploc bag. Add the steak. Seal the bag and turn to coat. Marinate in the fridge for 8 - 24 hours. Grill to desired temperature and then let it sit for 5 minutes before cutting.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Sausage Breakfast Muffins

I like to make breakfasts over the weekend that can be eaten on a grab and go basis during the week. My hubbie was getting tired of all the muffins and bisquits, so I came up with something more his style - meat, eggs and cheese. I am going to enjoy making these again but changing the cheese and the flavor of sausage, just cause I like to change things up!

12 buttermilk biscuits (you can use premade or make your own)
1 pound sausage (I used Italian, but you could use any kind)
6 eggs
4 Tablespoons milk
1 can diced green chilies
1 cup cheddar cheese

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Lightly spray a 12 cup cupcake pan with non-stick spray.

Cook the sausage in a skillet until completely cooked through. Let the sausage cool while getting the biscuits ready.

Cut each biscuit into eight triangles and place in the cupcake pans. Mix together the eggs, milk, chilies and cheese. Add the sausage.

Spoon the sausage mixture over the cut up biscuits. Bake for 15 - 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Rice Pudding

Making homemade rice pudding is sosososo easy! And it's a great way to get rid of leftover rice. All you need is:

cooked rice
milk
sugar
cinnamon

And this is all you have to do:
Put the cooked rice in a saucepan. Pour milk in until it's just barely over the top of the rice. Add sugar and cinnamon to your liking. Cook over medium high heat until the milk is absorbed. Enjoy either hot or cold.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Lemon Chicken

This lemon chicken is so easy and delicious. One of my hubbie's friends tried this chicken and said it was better than the lemon chicken at his parent's Chinese food restaurant! The recipe calls for red pepper, but my picture does not show any. I bought a red pepper and it managed to go bad in about 2 days. Hence the lack of red pepper. But don't leave it out, it adds great flavor to the dish (and color!)

1 Tablespoon oil
1 pound chicken breasts, cubed
1 package snow peas
1 red pepper, cut into strips
1 small package lemon jello
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup chicken broth
2 Tablespoons Zesty Italian dressing
1 cloves garlic, minced
rice, cooked

Cook the chicken in the oil until cooked through. Add the snow peas and red pepper, stir-fry for 2 minutes.

Mix the dry jello with the cornstarch. Add the broth, dressing and garlic. Stir until the jello is dissolved. Add to the chicken mixture. Reduce heat to medium, cook for 3 minutes or until the sauce is thickened. Serve over rice.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Moab Crockpot Chicken

I got this recipe from one of my co-workers when I still worked at Early Head Start. I'm not sure why it has the word "Moab" in it, but I'm assuming it has something to do with eating it while visiting Moab, Utah.

This dish is delicious! When my sister, Stacey, lived by me and had her first baby, I brought over dinner. This is what I served. The recipe quickly circulated around my family and even made it into the Family Recipe Books my Mom made for all of us for Christmas, just a few short months later.

4 chicken breasts
2 Tablespoons butter
1 package Italian dressing mix (the powder)
6 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup water
2 Tablespoons onion, minced
1 can cream of mushroom soup
noodles or rice, cooked

Place the chicken in the crockpot. Cube the butter into tiny pieces and sprinkle over the chicken. Sprinkle with the Italian dressing mix. Cook on high for 3 1/2 hours.

*side note* I will add the chicken breasts completely frozen and then cook on low for about 6 hours. This works better for me since I work full time and can't come home mid-day to start the crockpot.

Combine the cream cheese, water, onion and soup in a sauce pan. Heat until smooth. Pour over the chicken in the crockpot. Cook for 30 minutes longer. Serve over noodles or rice.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Cheesy Spinach Noodles

This makes a great side dish and really could accompany any kind of meat. It's really easy to put together and I find it easy to make at the same time as the rest of dinner. I think next time I'm going to try pepper jack cheese.

1/2 pound pasta (you can use any kind)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
4 oz cream cheese
1/3 cup milk
1/2 package of frozen spinach
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 cup mozzarella

Cook the pasta according to package directions.

In a saucepan, heat the garlic, cream cheese, and milk, until smooth. Add the spinach, seasoning and the mozzarella and stir until well mixed. Pour over the cooked noodles and mix well. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Popovers


These are so yummy. I love "egg-y" tasting bread and these popovers have an amazing flavor. Just remember - DO NOT OPEN the oven while they are cooking and make sure you grease the muffin tins really good or the bread can't "pop over".

3 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
12 teaspoons Parmesan cheese

Generously grease a 12 cup muffin tin, both bottoms and sides. Whisk the eggs until fluffy. Stir in the remaining ingredients just until combined. Fill the muffin cups about 2/3 full.

Let the batter sit, in the muffin tin, for about 30 minutes, or until the batter is room temperature. Then bake at 425 degrees for about 20-25 minutes. Don't open the oven while cooking!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Beef Roast with Maple Sweet Potatoes and Cider Gravy

This is such a fun recipe and a lot easier than the title makes it out to be. Also, the flavors together are AMAZING! Plus, it's a crockpot meal! Can't get any better than that. I also served this meal with some bread and that recipe is coming soon.

3 - 3/12 pounds boneless beef chuck shoulder roast
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 teaspoons thyme
1 cup beef broth
3/4 cup apple juice
2 cinnamon sticks
3 pounds of sweet potatoes, cut into 1 inch pieces
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon ginger
2 Tablespoons of cornstarch dissolved in 2 Tablespoons of water

Heat the oil in a fry pan. Brown all the sides of the roast. Place the roast in the crockpot.

Add the onion, thyme, broth, apple juice, and cinnamon sticks to the crockpot. Cook the roast on high for 3 hours, or low 6 hours.

Add the sweet potatoes to the roast and cook until the sweet potatoes are fork tender, about 1/2 hour.

Move the sweet potatoes to a bowl. Add the garlic, maple syrup, and ginger. Mash everything together until smooth. Keep warm.

Remove the roast, slice and keep warm.

Put the liquid in the crockpot into a saucepan. Remove the cinnamon sticks. Mix together the cornstarch and water and slowly add to the liquid. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, for one minute or until thickened. Enjoy!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Coconut Drop Biscuits

These little babies are perfect for breakfast. They may look kind of like cookies, but they are more like scones or biscuits. Just partner them up with some yogurt or fruit and you have yourself one amazing meal.

1 cup butter
3 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter chips
2 1/2 cups coconut

Mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut in the butter until crumbly. Add the eggs and milk until just combined. Stir in the chips and coconut.

Drop the dough, by Tablespoons, onto greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 - 30 minutes, or until golden brown on the sides.