Sunday, May 24, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
But back to cake! Her recipe appeared to be just what the doctor ordered. It was easy, quick and the best part - it doesn't require a stand mixer. I have a fabulous KitchenAid mixer that I got as a wedding present but since our kitchen it so tiny I don't have room to leave it out on the counter like I would like to do. Instead it is sitting on a shelf in our pantry. This sucker weighs like fifty pounds and every time I want to use it I groan at the thought of lifting it and carrying it to the counter. So here is her recipe I hope you all will try it soon!
The Best Chocolate Sheet Cake. Ever.
by Pioneer Woman (Ree Drummond)
1. 2 cups flour
2. 2 cups sugar
3. 1/4 tsp. salt
4. 2 sticks butter
5. 4 heaping tbsps. cocoa
6. 1 cup boiling water
7. 1/2 cup buttermilk
8. 2 eggs
9. 1 tsp. vanilla
1. Combine in a mixing bowl: 2 cups flour, 2 cups sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt
2. In a saucepan, melt: 2 sticks butter I realized after the fact that she said to use regular butter (not unsalted) but I used unsalted and it turned out fine.
3. Add 4 heaping tablespoons cocoa. Stir together. Add 1 cup boiling water, allow mixture to boil for 30 seconds, then turn off heat.
4. Pour over flour mixture, and stir lightly to cool.
5. In measuring cup, pour 1/2 cup buttermilk (I didn't have buttermilk but thankfully she had a nifty trick for taking care of that! You measure out slightly less than 1/2 cup of milk and then pour vinegar until it rises up the 1/2 way mark.)
6. Add: 2 beaten eggs, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon vanilla.
7. Stir buttermilk mixture into butter/chocolate mixture.
8. Pour into sheet cake pan and bake at 350-degrees for 20 minutes
Monday, March 16, 2009
Sausage with Biscuits and Gravy
1. 1 pd. of sausage
2. 1 tube of biscuits
3. AP flour
4. salt and pepper
1. Take your pound of sausage (I like to use hot sausage but whatever floats your boat is fine) shape the sauge into circles slightly smaller than the size of your palm.
2. Place the sausage in a skillet on medium high heat and let it start cooking.
3. In the meantime get out your tube of biscuits. If you are feeling particularly adventurous then by all means make them from scratch.
4. You can cook the biscuits on either a sheet pan or in a cast iron skillet - again it doesn't really matter it just depends on what you have on hand and what you want to use.
5. Cook the biscuits based on the package instructions.
6. Keep an eye on the sausage and flip it when needed. I like mine to get almost charred. When the sausage is completely cooked through remove it to a paper towel and cover with tinfoil to keep warm.
7. Some sausage releases a lot of grease during the cooking process and some doesn't. If the pan you cooked the sausage in is swimming with grease then remove a couple of spoonfuls. Usually with the sausage I make though there is hardly any grease in the pan - I actually end up having to add a little bit of canola oil.
8. Take a couple of tbsps of AP flour and on medium low heat add the flour to the empty pan. Use a whisk to combine the flour with the grease.
9. Pour some milk into the pan. I never measure I just eyeball it but I would say start with about a cup and see if you need more from there. Whisk the milk with the flour/grease mixture and see if the texture is right. You have probably had biscuits and gravy before so you know what you are aiming for. The mixture should be pourable but not runny. Like cornbread it's almost impossible to ruin because if it gets too watery add more flour and if it gets too thick add more milk. Let it cook for about ten to fifteen minutes. You just want to make sure the raw flavor of the flour is cooked out.
10. Salt and pepper to taste. It will need quiet a bit of both. Despite the sausage drippings, white gravy doesn't have a ton of flavor by itself. It'll need some doctoring.
11. Take one (or two or three) of your biscuits that should be done by now and split them open. Pour the gravy on top and place a piece of sausage on the side (if you want to eat it like I do!) and stuff yourself like crazy.
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Sunday, March 8, 2009
from Ina Garten
1. 2 chickens (3 pounds each), cut in 8 serving pieces
2. 1 quart buttermilk
3. 2 cups all-purpose flour
4. 1 tablespoon kosher salt
5. 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
6. Vegetable oil or vegetable shortening
1. Place the chicken pieces in a large bowl and pour the buttermilk over them. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
3. Combine the flour, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Take the chicken out of the buttermilk and coat each piece thoroughly with the flour mixture.
4. Pour the oil into a large heavy-bottomed stockpot to a depth of 1-inch and heat to 360 degrees F on a thermometer.
5. Working in batches, carefully place several pieces of chicken in the oil and fry for about 3 minutes on each side until the coating is a light golden brown (it will continue to brown in the oven). Don't crowd the pieces.
6. Remove the chicken from the oil and place each piece on a metal baking rack set on a sheet pan. Allow the oil to return to 360 degrees F before frying the next batch.
7. When all the chicken is fried, bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the chicken is no longer pink inside. Serve hot.
Friday, February 27, 2009
1. 1 pd. tri colored rotini pasta
2. 1 pint of cherry tomatoes
3. black olives (pitted and drained)
4. Italian dressing
5. 1 red, green or yellow bell pepper
1. Boil the pasta
2. In a large bowl add: the can of black olives, the tomatoes which have been rinsed and sliced in half, 1 bell pepper finely diced
3. Once the pasta is done cooking drain and run cold water over it to stop the cooking process and to cool the pasta down.
4. Add the pasta to the bowl with the olives, tomatoes, and bell pepper.
5. I always make my own Italian dressing (simply follow the directions on the back of an Italian Dressing Seasoning packet) but feel free to purchase a bottle if you don't want to do that.
6. Drizzle a fair amount of the dressing over the salad and toss to combine.
7. Serve with the Italian dressing by the side of the bowl so that people can add more if they want to. For some reason no matter how much you add to the bowl it always seems to need more on your plate.
This salad is very easily adaptable to your own taste. My mom likes to dice half a red onion and put it in hers. Every now and then I will add some fresh broccoli to mine.
Cheesy Sausage and Egg Quiche
I found the recipe East Meets West Kitchen blog
1. 1 pound Jimmy Dean Maple sausage I used the pd. of hot sausage I had on hand
2. 1/2 cup onion, diced
3. 1/2 cup green pepper, diced
4. 1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated
5. 1 tbsp. flour
6. 1 9-inch deep-dish pie crust
7. 4 eggs, beaten
8. 1 cup buttermilk
9. 1 tbsp. parsley flakes To me 1 tbsp. is too much. Next time I will half that amount.
10. 1/2 tsp seasoned salt
11. 1/2 tsp garlic powder
12. 1/4 tsp freshly grind black pepper
1. Cook sausage in non-stick skillet. Drain sausage, reserving 2 tbs fat.
2. Sauté onion and pepper in 2 tbs fat reserved from the sausage.
3. Combine cheese and flour. Stir in sausage, pepper, and onion.
4. Spread evenly in pie crust.
5. Thoroughly mix rest of ingredients and pour into pie shell over sausage mixture.
6. Place on a cookie sheet and bake in a preheated oven at 375°F for 35-40 minutes, until browned and cooked.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
from Ina Garten
1. 4 tbps. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
2. 4 cups chopped yellow onions (2 large onions) This seemed a bit excessive to me so I only used one onion. There was still plenty!
3. 1/4 cup AP flour
4. 1/4 tsp. grated nutmeg
5. 1 cup heavy cream
6. 2 cups milk
7. 3 pds. frozen chopped spinach, defrosted
8. 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
9. 1 tbsp. kosher salt
10. 1/2 tsp. black pepper
11. 1/2 cup grated Gruyere cheese
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
2. Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saute pan over medium heat.
3. Add the onions and saute until translucent, about 15 minutes.
4. Add the flour and nutmeg and cook, stirring, for 2 more minutes.
5. Add the cream and milk and cook until thickened.
6. Squeeze as much liquid as possible from the spinach and add the spinach to the sauce. The best way to do this is to take a clean kitchen towel and put the spinach in it and then wring all the water you can out.
7. Add 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese and mix well.
8. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. I used way more than 1 tbsp of salt and 1/2 tsp. of black pepper. To me it needed it.
9.Transfer the spinach to a baking dish and sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan and the Gruyere on top.
10. Bake for 20 minutes until hot and bubbly. Serve hot.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
There is a hillarious scene in the movie Adam's Rib in which she also starred with Spencer Tracy. She is trying rather unsuccessfully to be the "little wife" in the kitchen making him coffee and waffles for breakfast. Well of course the whole thing is a mess. The toast flies out of the toaster and onto the floor, her coffee is boiling over, her waffles (due to added yeast) are bubbling out of the waffle maker. You need to watch that movie for that one scene alone. I love the way she looks at the waffle maker with the copious amount of waffle mix gurgling out of it and looks back over her shoulder at Spencer who is sitting at the breakfast table pretending to read his newspaper. She steps infront of the waffle maker to shield her disaster in home cooking. The look on her face is priceless. Apparently in real life though Katharine knew her way around a kitchen. Her brownie recipe is so delicious and ooey gooey. I have only tried homemade brownies once before and the results were kind of "meh" for lack of a better description. These were flawless. Much like Hepburn herself.
Katharine Hepburn's Brownies
Published first in a 1975 issue of Ladies Home Journal. Reprinted by Saveur.
1. 1/2 cup unsalted butter, plus more for greasing
2. 2 ounces good quality unsweetened chocolate
3. 1 cup granulated sugar
4. 2 eggs, beaten
5. 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
6. 1 cup roughly chopped walnuts
7. 1/4 cup all purpose flour
8. 1/4 tsp. table salt
1. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Grease an 8"x 8" baking pan with butter. Line the pan with parchment paper; grease the paper. Set pan aside.
2. Melt the butter and chocolate together in a 2 qt. sauce pan over low heat, stirring constantly with a wodden spoon. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the sugar. Add the eggs and vanilla and stir to make a smooth batter. Add the walnuts, flour and salt; stir until incorporated. Pour the batter into the baking pan and spread evenly. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 40-45 minutes. Let cook on a rack. Cut and serve.
Thursday, February 19, 2009
1. 3 family sized tea bags - I always buy Lipton Tea Naturally Decaffeinated Family Size Tea Bags
2. sugar (1/2 cup)
1. In a medium sized saucepan fill halfway full with water. Put teabags in and bring to a boil.
2. Once the water is boiling, immediately turn the heat down to a simmer. Let simmer for about 10 minutes.
3. Take a 1 gallon pitcher and pour 1/2 cup of sugar into it.
4. Pour the hot tea into the pitcher and use a wooden spoon to stir the tea with the sugar until the sugar dissolves.
5. Run water to the top of the pitcher. Stir a few times to incorporate the tea with the water.
That's all there is to it! To jazz it up a little, I like to make a gallon of unsweetened tea and mix half a glass of tea with half a glass of lemonade to make an Arnold Palmer.
1. Cornmeal - I like to use Martha White Corn Meal, Plain White
2. 1 large egg
3. milk - I just use what I always have on hand which is 2% but I'm sure it would work with regular
4. canola oil
* You are going to need a cast iron skillet to make this cornbread. If you don't already have one and want to purchase one I would recommend an 8 inch skillet. It produces 8 slices of cornbread which is enough for most families. Try to find a skillet which says it is "pre-seasoned" . That means it will already be non stick and protected from rust.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1. In a large bowl combine: egg, cornmeal and milk. This is the tricky part since I don't have exact measurements. I just take a regular table spoon and put about a dozen heaping spoonfuls of cornmeal in the bowl along with the egg. Add enough milk so that the mixture is slightly runny. The great thing about this is that if it gets too thin you just add some more cornmeal and if it gets too thick you just add some more milk. Use a whisk to mix everything together. Don't overmix or it will get gluey (if that is even a word!)
2. Turn a stove eye on about medium heat
3. Put about 2 tbsps. canola oil in the cast iron skillet and put the skillet on the stove eye
4. Wait for the oil in the skillet to get warm. You don't want it to be too hot or otherwise the cornmeal will cook too rapidly when it hits the oil. When you think it is warm enough take a pinch of cornmeal and put in the skillet. It should sizzle a little.
5. Pour the cornmeal mix you have made into the skillet on the stove. The oil from the bottom will come up the sides a little bit. Take a spoon and pull some of the oil across the cornmeal so that it will be nice and golden.
6. Put in the oven for about 30 minutes.
7. Remove and run a butter knife around the edge and then invert it onto a dinner plate.
8. Slice and serve. YUM!
Sunday, February 15, 2009
1. 1 - 1.5 lb. lean ground beef
2. 1 box lasagna noodles - do NOT be tempted into buying the "no boil" pasta
3. 2 jars of spaghetti sauce - you can certainly make your own sauce but I really like the taste of Classico Tomato and Basil
4. swiss cheese- I like Sargento Deli Style Sliced Swiss Cheese. It comes with 12 slices which is more then you will end up using but it's nice to have on hand for sandwiches.
5. cottage cheese- I buy a 1 lb. tub of it and end up using approximately 1/2. My mom makes her's with reduced fat but I like the Horizon Organic best.
6. mozzarella cheese- Again, I'm partial to Sargento brand shredded mozzarella cheese. You certainly won't use up an entire bag since this is only going on the last layer but cheese is always a good staple to have in the frig.
1. Brown the meat in a deep pan and drain off any grease.
2. Add the two jars of tomato sauce. Turn the heat down to medium low and just let it simmer.
3. In a large pot bring water to a boil. Salt slightly and put lasagna noodles in. The noodles should be completely cooked in under 10 minutes. You want to take them out slightly before they are al dente. They will finish cooking in the oven.
4. In a 9x13 inch pan spread a thin layer of tomato sauce out. This will keep the lasagna from sticking to the pan after baking.
5. Put down a layer of lasagna noodles. I can usually fit around 3 or 4.
6. Take the meat/sauce mixture and spoon a pretty good layer on top of the noodles.
7. Take your swiss cheese slices and lay them down on top of the sauce. I can usually fit 4 slices.
8. Take a spoon and dollop out the cottage cheese on top of the swiss cheese and meat mixture. I don't have precise measurements I just eyeball it. Just do about a dozen or so quarter size dollops all over.
9. Over the cheese add another layer of the meat/sauce mixture.
10. Repeat steps 5-9 until you get to the top of the dish.
10. For your last layer after you have added the sauce over the swiss and cottage cheese you will add a heaping layer of mozzarella cheese. Be generous with it. This will brown and become the "crust" of the lasagna.
11. Put into a 350 degree oven for approximately 15 minutes or until the mozzarella cheese has melted into a deep golden brown.
12. Serve hot with garlic bread. This recipe makes enough lasagna to feed a small army so if you are planning on having guests over you should absolutely consider this!
Friday, February 6, 2009
5. Add chili powder. The amount is approximate. Despite what you may think, chili powder doesn't actually add a lot of heat it just adds a kind of smokey background taste. The more you add the darker the final product will be.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
2. 2/3 cup chopped reduced-fat ham (about 2 ounces) Again I highly recommend spicy sausage
3. 1/3 cup (about 1 1/2 ounces) shredded reduced-fat extra-sharp cheddar cheese I always just use regular cheddar cheese
4. 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives Omitted
5. 1/8 teaspoon dried thyme Omitted
6. 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
7. 4 large egg whites
8. 1 large egg
2. Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
1. 1 can cream of mushroom soup
2. egg noodles
3. 2 cans of tuna
4. 1 cup frozen peas
5. 1 tbsp. butter
1. Cook egg noodles until they are al dente (approximately 12 minutes). Make sure to salt the water slightly.
2. Drain egg noodles into a colander and then return them to the pot they cooked in.
3. Add the cream of mushroom soup
4. Add the two cans of tuna (drained and flaked up)
5. Adding the butter is optional but my mom always used it so I do.
6. Add the frozen peas
7. Mix the whole thing together until well incorporated
Voila! You have a circa 1985 meal the whole family will love!
Saturday, January 24, 2009
1. 1 to 1 1/2 cups of ham cubed
2. 2 stalks of celery diced
3. 2 carrots diced
4. 1 small onion diced
5. 2-3 cans of Luck's Northern Beans (my mom said it must be Lucks) do not drain
6. 1 14.5 oz. can of diced tomatoes
7. bacon grease (approximately 2 tbsps)
* If you don't keep bacon grease on hand (I realize a lot of people don't!) then make some bacon for breakfast and reserve the drippings. A pound of bacon should do the trick.
1. In a stockpot, heat the bacon grease on medium heat and add the onion in. Let cook until the onion begins to carmelize.
2. Add the ham and cook for another 10 minutes.
3. Add celery, carrots and beans
4. Add tomatoes (you mostly just want the juice and only a few chunks of tomatoes) I put in a about 1/3 of a can .
5. Add enough water to cover the entire mixture. I usually fill up one of the bean cans halfway with water and that is all I need.
6. Add LOTS of pepper. The soup is supposed to be spicy and my mom always achieved this by just adding copious amounts of black pepper. I've heard some people add tabasco sauce instead.
Cook the soup on medium high heat for about 30-45 minutes.
I hope you all will love this soup! The best thing is it really is better the day after you make it so leftovers will go quickly!