Monday, November 1, 2010

I'm Back...

Ahhh. Friends. Thank you for your patience. Life has been crazy. Did I say crazy? What I meant was CRAZY! Just like the rest of the world. I have said it before but life happens and life comes first.

The other day I was filtering through some of my old photos and ran across this photo of my Burgerbaby boy and realized with a sigh of sadness that this photo is quite possible the last time I have made homemade cinnamon rolls... 18 months ago (eek). Notice the baby face that Burger has since lost :(  I hope to be back in the "cooking" saddle again very soon. I actually can't wait. Some good stuff to come so keep posted.   

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Dodo Salad

This is one of my favorite salads of all time. There is a restaurant in SLC called "The Dodo" that serves a salad that is light, crisp, lemony, cheesy and wonderful. This is it :)

The Dodo Dressing
1/3 C Parmesan Cheese
1/3 C Olive Oil
1/2 - 1 tsp garlic cloves minced
juice of 1 lemon
1 Tbl rice vinegar
1/2 tea salt
1/4 tea pepper

Combine in a jar and with an immersion blender blend until smooth or shake vigerously. Serve over your favorite salad.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Santa Rosa Salad

If there was a category for "SUPER Super Fav" this would be near the top. It is an oldie but A goodie!! It was my 1st post when I started this little food blog many... many... meals ago but I now have a new and improved photo so am posting again. LOVE this one!

3-4 chicken breasts - cooked then diced
2 box long grain wild rice w/ seasonings – cook, let cool... don’t over cook
juice from 1 lemon
juice from ½ lime
3 green onions finely chopped
1/4 green Bell pepper
1/2 red bell pepper
3 oz (handful) Chinese Pea Pods Chopped– ends removed
1 med avocado diced (optional)
1 C chopped pecans toasted (optional)

• Dressing

2 Garlic cloves minced
2 TLB Dijon Mustard
1 TEA Salt
1/2 TEA Sugar
1/2 TEA Pepper
2/3 Cup Seasoned Rice Vinegar
2/3 Cup Vegetable oil

Make salad dressing 1st in blender or hand mixer then refrigerate.
Mix all other ingredients together except pecans and avocado reserve until serving.
Add dressing and refrigerate at least 2 hours and serve…. Yummy, yummy! Excellent served with toasted French bread and summer fruit!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Texas Brownies

Well pretty much everyone has one of these.... but for our posterity's sake this one is our family recipe. We love these.

1 lb butter (4 sticks) - you can also do 1/2 butter 1/2 shortening
2 C water
8 Tbl cocoa
* melt in microwave and stir together well

4 eggs
1 C milk
2 tsp vanilla
4 C sugar
4 C flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp salt
* add to the above

Blend together well. Pour into a greased cookie sheet. This will make 1 1/2 sheets (think) or 2 sheets (thin brownies). Bake 350 approx 25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven, let col then frost. YUM!

4 oz cream cheese
1 stick butter (melted)
1 bag powdered sugar
1 tlb vanilla

Monday, April 5, 2010

Italian Vegetable Stew

Well I am on a kick. This was fabulous! I felt so good after eating this. NO bread, no cheese, no meat... it was a miracle. And I was OH so satisfied.

3 Cup water
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 + tsp garlic/seasoning salt
1 Tbl dried onion
1 tsp garlic
1/4 tsp "no-salt seasoning" from Costco (Italian seasoning could substitute)
1 can diced tomato
1/4 tsp pepper (1/2 tsp if you want a kick)
1 C frozen corn
1 C diced carrots
1/2 C edamame (out of pod)
1 C zuccinni sliced
1/2 red bell pepper - diced
1 C broccoli
2 beef boullion cubes (optional)

Bring to a simmer minus broccoli, once to a low boiling for 10 minutes add broccoli until tender approx 10-15 more minutes. It you have time let rest at a barely bubble for a while and let the flavors bind. Serve hot and if you must.... with fresh french bread and cheese. YUMMY!

Whole Wheat Snickerdoodle

A little naughty, a lot nice. These are soft, yummy and if you decide to throw in the whole wheat flour, a "little" healthy too! Yum!

1/2 C shortening
1/2 C butter (soft)
1 Tbl vanilla
2 eggs
3/4 C brown sugar
3/4 C white sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg (optional)
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cream of tarter
1 1/2 C whole wheat flour
1 1/2 C white flour
1 Tlb milk

You can mix up the flour a bit. 1/2 and 1/2 (shown) or 3/4 to 1/4 ratio or full whole wheat flour if you are not timid.

Cream eggs, butter, shortening, sugar and vanilla. Add baking soda, cinnamon, salt, cream of tartar blend until smooth then add flour gradually until well blended. Roll into balls and place on a cookie sheet. Bake 350 8-10 minutes

Monday, March 29, 2010

Diane's White Bread

Forget about anything I have ever said about bread. This bread is full of flavor and oh so moist. THIS one IS my favorite!!!! My sister Diane contributed this golden to me and... I am in love!

3 yeast
6 C milk (very warm)
3/4 C shortening
1 C sugar
3 Tbl salt
1 1/2 C water (very warm)
8-10 flour

 Keep in mind this recipe has been custom constructed for a BOSCH, if you do not have a Bosch and are using a Kitchenaid 1st of all bummer, secondly you will have to half this recipe.

Heat milk on stove top or microwave until very warm,  then gently add to mixer. Combine shortening, sugar, water, 4-5 cups of flour and then yeast. Knead in mixer (Bosch) until smooth (approx 2 min) then add 1 cup at a time flour and salt until dough is formed and is barely pulling away from sides of mixer. Knead an additional 8 minutes in mixer. When ready pour out into greased bowl and cover with damp cheese cloth until doubles in size. Remove from bowl onto well floured countertop and separate into 7-8 equal loaves depending on size. Brush with butter or egg whites and let rest until rises in bread pan and bake at 350 until well golden (40 min approx)... don't under bake and don't over bake.

If you are feeling insecure about bread making feel free to email me or read this.


Sunday, March 28, 2010

Super Strawberry Cupcakes

One of my favorite desserts is strawberry cake. I have had a hankering for these for a while now and these were delish! A perfect Easter time treat!

Super Strawberry Cupcakes
1 3/4 C Sugar
1 Tbl vanilla
 4 eggs
1 C butter - soft/melted
1 (3oz) pkg strawberry jello
2 3/4 flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 C milk
1/8 tsp salt
3/4 C fresh strawberry puree with 1 Tlb sugar

Beat butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla,  jello powder, until smooth. Add salt, baking powder and flour (one cup at a time) until well blended and creamy.  In a small blender puree fresh strawberries and sugar until it yields 3/4 C strawberry puree then add milk  and batter and blend smooth. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full with batter. Bake 350  approx 20 minutes (don't over cook or they will be dry). Let cool on wire rack. Once completely cool pipe frosting on top. YUM!

Yields - 3 Dozen. Picture shows jumbo cupcakes and in that case, will not yield as many.

Strawberry FROSTING
1 8oz strawberry flavored cream cheese - blended smooth
1/2 C butter soft - add to cream cheese and blend smooth
1 bag powdered sugar
1 Tbl vanilla
milk until desired consistency

Blend well and if desired add 1-2 drops of red/pink food coloring.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Veggie Dip

This is one of my favorite veggie dips. Thank Val, you domestic diva!

1 C lite sour cream
1 C lite mayo
1 pkg Hidden Valley ranch "dip" seasoning
2 green onions - finely chopped
1 C shredded cheese blend

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Banana Bread

Ok... I know... who doesn't have a banana bread recipe but this one is good and a little different. Moist, flavorful and yummy!

1 stick of butter
1 C sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/2 tsp cardamon
2 Tbl vinegar
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 ripe bananas (not too dark)
2 C flour

You can throw in 1 cup of chocolate chips or a cup of blueberries too to give it some pizazz!

Cream together butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla. Add bananas and incrementally add the dry ingredients until creamy and smooth. Well oil and flour bread pans or bunt pan. Bake 350 for ... until done.. and smells yummy 50-55 minutes. Make sure tooth pick comes out clean. Makes 2 loaves.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Yukas Richest Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies

A sweet friend (Yuka) of mine made these unbelievable cookies for me on my birthday. She is such a sweetheart and these are indeed the "RICHEST EVER" chocolate chip cookies. These take 1st prize in my book for the BEST CC cookie ever! Dang it these are amazing!

2 C butter - soft
3 eggs - room temperature
2 C sugar
2 C brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla (the good kind)
6 C flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
8 oz + chocolate chips
1 full bag of Heath toffee chips

Cream butter, eggs, sugar and vanilla. Add remaining ingredients until well blended. Scoop out on lined cookie sheet and bake 350 for 8-9 minutes, let cool 2 minutes on cookie sheet before removing to cooling rack.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Super Spring Salad


Equal parts romaine lettuce and spinach and spring mix
blue berries
purple onion
swiss cheese

Sweet Dressing: (this is amazing... like candy!)
2/3 cup rice vinegar
1 ½ cup oil
¾ cup sugar
2 tbls dried onion flakes
1 ½ teaspoons salt (I use kosher salt)
2 teaspoons dry mustard
2 tablespoons poppy seeds
Blend in a blender and serve!!

Dressing alternative : 
Equal Part Dressing
Red wine vinagar

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Cheddar Onion Roll and French Bread

I love bread with dinner. A meal seems incomplete without bread. I love this one especially the Cheddar Onion Roll!

(2-3 loaves)
7 C flour
3 C water
1 Tlb sugar
2 tsp coarse salt
1 Tlb + 1 tsp yeast

1-2 Tlb cornmeal

1 egg white
1 Tlb wtaer
dried onion flakes or sesame seeds optional

In Bosch mix 4 Cups flour, sugar, (very warm) water and yeast, let knead for 3-4 minutes then add salt and gradually add remaining flour, let knead for 6-8 minutes. Once kneading is complete, roll out on floured counter space and divide in 1/2 or 1/3's. Roll out into a 8x10 rectangle and roll up jelly roll style (starting with at length) then pinch seams together to seal.

Grease cookie sheets and sprinkle cornmeal on sheet. Place loaf on sheet and set aside in warm place to rise (should double) approx 20 minutes.

Whisk egg whites and water together, brush over dough loaves. With sharp knife make four shallow slashes across the top of dough loaf. You can also do this before rising if you don't trust yourself with knives and worry about slashing too deep.. you do not want to deflate your loaf. Sprinkle with onion or sesame seeds if desired then bake 375 for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Remove from over and let cool on wire racks.

 Cheddar Onion Roll

(Dough above is prior to baking)
Make dough as described above. Spread soft butter on dough, sprinkle generous amounts of garlic salt, dried onion flakes (1-2 tsp approx) and 1-1 1/2 C sharp cheddar cheese across the entire rectangle then roll as described above. Once rolled and seams are all pinched together (to avoid sepage) including ends, twist roll so that seam is upward and roll like a snail (seam inward) and pinch end in to it holds its form. Lay flat on greased/cornmeal cookie sheet and let rise. YUMMY!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Lasgna Soup

Sometimes all I want is hearty comfort food but not the mess. This was a great compromise.... I got both the comfort of great food, plus the comfort of ease. Perfect rainy day soup!

1 lb extra lean ground beef/turkey or sausage
1/2 C grated onion
1 heaping tsp fresh garlic
1 1/2 tsp seasoning salt
1 1/2 Tlb dried basil (you can use fresh also just not as much)
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp oregano
pinch of nutmeg
1 - 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 - 14.5 can diced tomatoes
1 - 6 oz can tomato paste
1 C apple juice
4 beef bouillon cubes
1 1/2 C water
1-2 C sliced or cubed zucchini

12 oz package Armoniche noodles - itty bitty lasagna noodles but any small pasta would really work fine.

2-3 C mozzarella and parmesan cheese for garnish - I usually do equal parts of each and mix it together

Cook meat and onion together until cooked, drain then combine in a crock pot all other ingredients. Let simmer on low minimum 3 hours. Boil noodles until tender but do not overcook, add to soup within 30 minutes of serving. Do not let it keep cooking or the noodles will overcook and get mushy. Serve with lots of cheese on top and fresh asiago cheese bread. 

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Quinoa Black Bean Salad

Quinoa Black Bean Salad

After my " Kill Me Now Pound Cake" posted a couple of days ago, I nearly died, literally. I could feel my arteries getting smaller and smaller and the seems on my jeans were looking a bit taught.... so.... This is what I am eating for the next few days and trying oh so hard to stay clear of those darn girl scout cookies.

This is really delish and makes me feel so alive!! My sweet and oh so health conscious friend Liz shared this Yummy Fun with me and I totally love it!

1 C uncooked quinoa (see below)
1 Can black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 C roma tomato diced
1 large cucumber sliced (I used the mini cucumbers at Costco)
1 red bell pepper diced
1/4 purple onion diced
2 + limes (for juice) to taste
1 C frozen corn
1 avocado diced (optional)
1/2 bunch cilantro - rinsed and finely chopped

I added these few things for dressing
red wine vinegar/apple cider vinegar (to taste)
olive oil (2 tlb)
pinch of pepper
pinch of course salt

Cook quinoa according to directions. While quinoa is cooking dice your vegetables. Once quinoa is cooked add frozen corn 1st to start the immediate cooling process for the quinoa, then add all the remaining veggies and dressing (lime, vinager, oil s&p) :) and place in fridge until chilled. Serve alone or with healthy tortilla chips.

This is Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah). It might not be new to you but it is relatively new to me and I think I have found my new favorite thing. It is high in protein, high in fiber, contains all 8 essential amino acids and high in iron, calcium, magnesium and B vitamins.

It can be used as a substitute for rice or pasta, put in soups, breakfast cereals and I even put it in my morning shake today raw (but rinsed). ONE HELPFUL hint, make sure you rinse thoroughly, there is a very bitter outer coating that must be rinsed before boiling. Apparently you can cook it and freeze it as well though I have not tried it. Anyway, I am sure you will see more of this little goodie from me in the future.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Kill Me Now Pound Cake

This recipe came from my good friend Stacy Chen, who is an amazing baker and cook. She made me this cake a couple of times and I just made it myself and oh my goodness..... just kill me know. WARNING... not conducive for new year diets! It is rich, soft, creamy, with a delectable chewy crust... oh my! Oh so good and oh so dangerous.

1 ½ c butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, softened
3 c sugar
6 eggs
2 t vanilla
3 c flour
1 t salt

Combine butter and cream cheese, beat until smooth.  Add sugar and beat on high speed until light and airy (about 5 minutes).  Add the eggs, one at a time beating well after each addition.  Add the vanilla, then the flour and salt together.  Beat until combined (don’t over beat).  Pour batter into a well buttered and sugared tube or bundt pan.  Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hr. 15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

o    Do not take this cake out early.  If the cake comes out of the oven before a toothpick comes out completely clean it is not done.  This cake gains its’ flavor as it bakes, especially during those last ten minutes-so NO under-baking.

Here is a great tip for the cake. I buttered and sugared my pan and I LOVED it!
• Sugar your pans instead of flouring them. There are two ways to do this depending on the results you are looking for. If you use shortening and sugar you will get a soft, pale crust (almost crustless). If you use butter and sugar you will get a crispy, darker crust. Butter will not dissolve the sugar, so you have little crystals on the crust.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Chicken Curry Sloppy Joes

This is a recipe (a bit modified) my sister gave to me. I loved it but changed it to chicken rather than beef and added a few ingredients I thought make it superb. You can also do this in a crock pot in the morning with frozen chicken and it will be falling apart by the end of the day! Easy and tasty!

3-4 chicken breasts boiled, shredded and seasoned 

SAUCE - bring to a simmer the following ingredients
1/2 - 1 sweet onion finely chopped
1/2 C Water
1 T sugar
1/4 tsp sage
1 tsp salt
1/2  + tsp chili powder
1/2 + tsp curry
1 tsp garlic
1/4 tsp basil
1/4 tsp peper
2 bay leaves or a pinch of bay leaf flakes
1 C ketchup
1/2 C diced green bell pepper (I personally refer red)

Once simmering add shredded chicken (or ground beef/turkey) and serve hot over toasted hoggie rolls. 

Monday, January 4, 2010

Chicken Basil Heaps on Pita Bread

Seasoned pita bread - rosemary/Italian/mulitgrain cut into wedges or squares
3-4 Chicken breasts - boiled, shredded and seasoned
1/3 C. sun dried tomatoes
3 sprigs fresh basil - washed and finely snipped
3/4 C lite mayo
1 C swiss cheese
1 tea garlic salt (to taste)
1/2 tsp lemon pepper
1/2 tsp garlic
2 Tbl seasoned rice vinegar
1 + 1/4 tsp sugar
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Prepare chicken and set aside to cool. Chop up fresh basil and sun dried tomatoes and combine with chicken, set aside. Mix together in a bowl mayo, cheese, vinegar, salt, pepper, garlic, sugar and mix well then combine with chicken mixture. Dollop chicken heaps on cut flat breads and top with grated Parmesan cheese. Bake 400 for 5-8 minutes until golden and bubbly. Great as an appetizer or served with fresh salad for main course. YUM!

Chicken Salad with Red Bell Peppers (alternative to above)
3-4 Chicken
1 tsp rosemary blend spice
fresh parsley if available 
1 tsp garlic
garlic salt - to taste
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 C celery - finely chopped
1/2 C red bell pepper - finely chopped
3/4 C lite mayo
1/4 sour cream
1/2 C fresh Parmesan cheese
1/4 C fresh sweet onion (or 1 1/2 Tbl dried onion flakes)

You can totally play with this method. Just make you chicken base then throw in whatever excites you. I have done spinach and artichoke, cream cheese with green onion and mushroom, apple and celery with cheese. etc... this has so much latitude to be creative.