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Archive for May, 2009

Lemon mustard rosemary chicken

Lemon mustard rosemary chicken

My mom and I love the healthy lemon-rosemary chicken meal at Johnny Carinos.  After hanging out with mom this past weekend not only did I come home with a new table runner, but also a new twist on my chicken recipe.

  • 3 chicken breasts
  • Juice of 1 lemon plus zest or 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves chopped
  • 2 t dried rosemary
  • 1 T brown mustard
  • 1/2 cup sweet pepper
  • Dash of pepper

Preparation:

Combine all ingredients and marinate for 30 minutes.  Cook in frying pan at medium to high heat with remaining marinate.  Serve with couscous or rice.

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Crepe Cake

Cream Cheese Crepe Cake

Cream Cheese Crepe Cake

Cream cheese crepe cake is like a cheesecake mixed in with a creme brulee/custard.  Next time however, I would add almond or vanilla extract to the crepe batter.  I noticed on other recipes they burned the top of the cake with sugar for a caramelized flavor.  I love making crepes for a meal as well; stuffing them with sauted turkey, peppers, onions and cheese…amazing!  Don’t be afraid to make a few crepes and eatting them plain either.

Crepes:

  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt OR, FOR SWEETER CREPES, 2 tbsp. sugar

Filling:

  • 1 – 8 oz pkg cream cheese (reduced fat works too)
  • 1 – 3.4 oz vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tsp almond extract

Preparation:

  1. Combine all of the crepe ingredients and beat until well mixed with electric beater/whisk.
  2. Heat a heavily greased skillet (I used 8″ pan); remove from heat. Spoon in 2 tbsp. batter  Swirl around in pan so that batter is evenly distributed and very thin. 
  3. Return to heat; brown on 1 side only.
  4. Continue making the crepes until the batter is used up. Invert over paper towels or wax paper.
  5. Beat cream cheese, pudding mix, 1/2 cup milk and almond extract until smooth.
  6. Place a crepe on cake stand and spread a thin layer of custard over the entire crepe.
  7. Continue to layer crepes and thin custard layers.
  8. Place cake in refrigerator at least 1 hour before serving to allow custard to set up. 

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Soft Pretzels

Fresh Soft Pretzel from the oven

Fresh Soft Pretzel from the oven

 When Kyle and I were in Germany, we ate pretzels and beer almost everyday!  I knew I had to make my own when I returned home.  Luckily I found a this recipe, which is so easy and quick that anyone can and should make these delightful treats!  Bring them along tailgating or to a party where people can enjoy them with a drink. 

  • 2 cups warm water (100°F to 110°F)
  • 1 tablespoon + 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 packet active dry yeast
  • 5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons canola or other neutral oil
  • 1/4 cup baking soda
  • 1 large egg
  • Coarse or pretzel salt

1. Pour warm water and 1 tablespoon sugar into bowl of electric mixer fitted with a dough hook* and stir to combine. Sprinkle with yeast, and let sit 10 minutes; yeast should be foamy.

2. Add 1 cup flour to yeast, and mix on low until combined. Add salt and 4 cups more flour, and mix until combined, about 30 seconds. Beat on medium-low until dough pulls away from sides of bowl, about 1 1/2 minutes. Add another 1/2 cup flour, and knead on low 1 minute more. If dough is still wet and sticky, add 1/2 cup more flour (this will depend on weather conditions); knead until combined, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a lightly floured board, and knead about ten times, or until smooth.

3. Spray large bowl to coat sides. Transfer dough to bowl, turning dough to completely cover all sides. Cover with a kitchen towel, and leave in a warm spot for 1 hour, or until dough has doubled in size.

4. Heat oven to 450°F. Lightly spray two baking sheets with cooking spray (parchment paper, ungreased, also works). Set aside. Punch down dough to remove bubbles. Transfer to a lightly floured board. Knead once or twice, divide into 16 pieces (about 2 1/2 ounces each) or 32 if making miniature pretzels, and wrap in plastic.

5. Roll one piece of dough at a time into an 18-inch-long strip. [I find the pretzels much easier to roll on an unfloured board, oddly enough, but see what works for you.] Twist into pretzel shape; transfer to prepared baking sheet. Cover with a kitchen towel. Continue to form pretzels; eight will fit on each sheet (you may need a third sheet if making miniatures). Let pretzels rest until they rise slightly, about 15 minutes.

6. Meanwhile, fill large, shallow pot with 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil. Add baking soda (and step back, it foams up quickly) and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. Reduce to a simmer; transfer three to four pretzels to water. Poach 1 minute on each side. Use slotted spoon to transfer pretzels to baking sheet. Continue until all pretzels are poached.

7. Beat egg with 1 tablespoon water. Brush pretzels with egg glaze. Sprinkle with salt. Bake until golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool on wire rack, or eat warm. Pretzels are best when eaten the same day, but will keep at room temperature, uncovered, for two days. Do not store in covered container or they will become soggy.

Pretzels after poaching

Pretzels after poaching

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Strawberry Rhubarb Bread

Strawberry Rhubarb Bread

Who hasn’t had this combination before? Usually this dynamic duo is found in pies and coffeecakes. This bread will be a pleasant surprise; the sweet/tart flavor keeps you coming back for more…

 

 

One Loaf
1/2 cup (4 ounces) whole milk
1/2 cup (4 ounces) water
1/3 cup (2 ounces) fresh sliced strawberries
1/3 cup (2 ounces) chopped fresh rhubarb
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
3 cups (13 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons instant yeast

Place all of the ingredients into the pan of your bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer. Program for white or basic bread, light setting, and press Start. Check the dough’s consistency about 7 minutes after the kneading cycle begins, adding additional water or flour to form a smooth, soft ball of dough. Allow the machine to complete its cycle. Remove the bread when it’s done, and let it cool completely before slicing. Yield: 1 loaf.

Nutrition information per serving (1 slice, 1/16 of loaf, 41g): 88 cal, 1g fat, 3g protein, 17g complex carbohydrates, 2g sugar, 1g dietary fiber, 1mg cholesterol, 137mg sodium, 60mg potassium, 3RE vitamin A, 2mg vitamin C, 1mg iron, 12mg calcium, 33mg phosphorus.

This recipe reprinted from The Baking Sheet Newsletter, Vol. XI, No. 4, Spring 2000 issue.

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Pasta with Chickpeas and Garlic Sauce

Pasta with Chickpeas and Garlic Sauce

A whirl in the food processor transforms the humble chickpea into a creamy sauce for pasta—a sauce that is a hallmark of rustic Italian cooking. Bolstered with garlic, tomatoes, and parmesan cheese, this easy dish makes the most of flavorful kitchen staples.

Yield

4 servings (serving size: 1 cup pasta and 2 1/4 teaspoons cheese)

Ingredients

  • 2  teaspoons  olive oil
  • 2  garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 3/4  teaspoon  kosher salt
  • 1/4  teaspoon  crushed red pepper
  • 1  (15.5-ounce) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
  • 1  (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 1/2  cups  uncooked medium seashell pasta (about 6 ounces)
  • 1/2  cup  grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2  garlic cloves, minced
  • 1  tablespoon  minced fresh parsley
  • 1  tablespoon  fresh lemon juice
  • 3  tablespoons  shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Preparation

Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add crushed garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add salt, pepper, chickpeas, and broth; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes.

While garlic mixture simmers, cook pasta in boiling water 9 minutes, omitting salt and fat; drain well.

Place chickpea mixture in a food pro-cessor, and process until smooth. Combine chickpea mixture, pasta, tomatoes, minced garlic, fresh parsley, and lemon juice; toss well. Sprinkle with cheese. Serve immediately.

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Classic Pound Cake

Classic Pound Cake

Classic Pound Cake

Today at work, we wrote our goals for the year.  Earlier in January, my goal was to create a blog for my recipes…done!  Another one of my goals was to read the bible…not done!  I love putting life into perspective and looking back at the year that I have been at my job makes me proud.  Recently a dealer mentioned that he noticed a change in Bobcat’s aftermarket.  Alleluia! 

I found this recipe in the May 2009 Better Homes and Gardens issue.  I have been searching for a vanilla bread recipe and this caught my eye.  It has fantastic flavor and a wonderful crumb.  I added a half a vanilla bean for an extra burst of flavor.  It’s a beautiful cake when made accordingly. 

Ingredients

  • 6  eggs
  • 1  cup cold unsalted butter (8 oz.), cut in 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1  8-oz. pkg. cold cream cheese, cut in 1-inch pieces
  • 2-3/4  cups sugar
  • 1  tsp. kosher salt
  • 4  tsp. pure vanilla
  • 3  cups sifted cake flour*

Directions

1. Let eggs stand at room temperature about 30 minutes or until they are room temperature (no more than 2 hours). Generously butter and lightly flour two 8x4x2-inch loaf pans or one 10-inch tube pan. Using large bowl of heavy-duty stand mixer with paddle attachment beat cold butter about 2 minutes on low speed, occasionally raising to moderately high speed for 5 seconds to dislodge butter from paddle.

2. Add cream cheese. Beat on low speed 3 minutes with occasional short bursts on high speed to dislodge mixture from paddle. Beat butter and cream cheese mixture until waxy and well-blended. Still mixing on low, add the sugar in a slow continuous stream. (This should take 1-1/2 to 2 minutes). Add salt. Continue creaming butter and cream cheese mixture for 5 minutes, scraping sides and bottom of bowl once halfway through. Increase speed to medium; continue mixing 2 minutes more, scraping once.

3. Add eggs, one at a time, beating 20 to 30 seconds after each addition or just until each egg is fully incorporated before adding the next egg. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl after first three eggs. Beat in vanilla with the last egg.

4. Gradually add about 2-1/2 cups of the flour on low speed, mixing until just blended (this should take about 1 to 1-1/2 minutes). Turn off mixer. Fold in remaining flour by hand with a rubber spatula, just until combined.

5. Turn batter into prepared pan(s). Shake pan(s) gently to distribute batter. Run a spatula in zigzag pattern through batter. Drop filled pan(s) from a height of about 6 inches onto kitchen counter to dislodge any large air pockets.

6.Place on center rack of cold oven. Turn oven setting to 300 degrees F. Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes to 1-1/2 hours without opening oven door for the first 1 hour and 15 minutes. (Bake 1 hour 45 minutes for tube pan.) Test for doneness by carefully inserting a cake tester in center of cake or gently removing cake from oven and listening for light bubbling sounds that soften and slow as cake approaches doneness.

7. Transfer to cooling rack. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans. Cool completely before serving. Makes 2 loaves (24 servings) or one 10-inch tube cake.

8. *Note: 2-1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour can be used in place of the cake flour.

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Easter Cake

Easter Cake

Mashed ripe banana adds moistness. The frosting, with cream cheese as its base, is similar to that of a traditional carrot cake. 

Yield

14 servings (serving size: 1 slice)

 

Ingredients

  • Cake:
  • Cooking spray
  • 1  tablespoon  all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/3  cups  granulated sugar
  • 1/4  cup  butter, softened
  • 3  large eggs
  • 1 3/4  cups  all-purpose flour
  • 2  teaspoons  baking powder
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 1  cup  low-fat buttermilk
  • 1  cup  mashed ripe banana (about 2 bananas)
  • 1  teaspoon  vanilla extract
  • Frosting:
  • 3/4  cup  (6 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, chilled
  • 2  tablespoons  butter, softened
  • 2  teaspoons  grated lemon rind
  • 1/2  teaspoon  vanilla extract
  • Dash of salt
  • 2 1/2  cups  powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2  cups  fresh raspberries (optional)

 

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°.

To prepare the cake, coat 2 (8-inch) round cake pans with cooking spray; line bottoms with wax paper. Coat wax paper with cooking spray; dust each pan with 1 1/2 teaspoons flour.

Place granulated sugar and 1/4 cup butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 3 minutes). Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

Lightly spoon 1 3/4 cups flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt, stirring well with a whisk.

Combine buttermilk, banana, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture alternately to the sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture (mix after each addition just until blended). Pour batter into prepared pans.

Bake cake at 350° for 25 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pans. Peel off wax paper. Cool layers completely on wire rack.

To prepare frosting, combine cream cheese, 2 tablespoons butter, rind, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and dash of salt in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer at high speed until fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar; beat at low speed just until blended (do not overbeat).

Place 1 cake layer on a plate, and spread with 1/3 cup frosting. Arrange raspberries in a single layer over frosting, and top with remaining cake layer. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake. Store cake loosely covered in refrigerator. Garnish with fresh raspberries, if desired.

 

Banana-Raspberry Cake with Lemon Frosting

Banana-Raspberry Cake with Lemon Frosting

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