Monday, November 30, 2009

Recipe: Lemon Chicken with Avocado Salsa

1 tablespoon lime juice
1 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 teaspoon salt

2 small tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 avocado, peeled and finely chopped
Drizzle olive oil over salsa

To prepare chicken:
Cut chicken breasts into strips and cut strips in half.

Combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl; toss and let stand 3 minutes.

Remove chicken from marinade; discard marinade.

Sprinkle chicken evenly with 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Heat pan on stove over medium-high heat.

Add chicken to pan; cook until slightly browned on each side or until done.

To prepare salsa:
Combine tomatoes and next 4 ingredients in a medium bowl.

Add avocado; stir gently to combine; add olive oil.

Serve salsa over chicken.

Makes about 2 servings.

My Own Recipe
November 2009
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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Recipe: Chocolate-Caramel Cookie Bars

For the Crust:
4 1/2 ounces (9 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for parchment
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon table salt

For the Chocolate Caramel:
10 1/2 ounces milk chocolate, chopped (2 cups)
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup water
3 ounces (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 tablespoon sea salt; preferably fleur de sel

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Make the crust: Line a 9 inch square baking pan with parchment, leaving an overhang on all sides; butter parchment, excluding overhang.

Beat butter and brown sugar on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

Add flour and table salt, and beat until just combined.

Press dough evenly into pan, and bake until lightly browned, about 30 minutes.

Make the Chocolate Caramel: Place chocolate in a medium bowl.

Heat granulated sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, washing sides of pan with a wet pastry brush to prevent sugar crystals from forming, until amber, 10 to 12 minutes.

Remove from heat.

Add butter, cream and table salt.

Bring to a boil, stirring until smooth.

Pour over chocolate.

Let stand for 2 minutes.

Stir to combine, and let stand until cool, about 10 minutes.

Pour mixture over crust.

Refrigerate at least 4 hours, or overnight.

Run a knife around edges; lift parchment to remove whole bar from pan.

Sprinkle with sea salt.

Trim edges, and cut into 16 bars.

Bars can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.
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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Recipe: Cheesy Ranch Chex Mix

9 cups corn chex, wheat chex, rice chex cereal (or combination)
2 cups Cheezits
2 cups mini pretzels
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 package (1 ounce) Ranch dressing and seasoning mix
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a big bowl combine chex, Cheezits, and pretzels.

Add melted butter and mix well.

Sprinkle little bit of Ranch dressing seasoning mix and stir well until package contents are gone.

Add parmesan cheese and mix until evenly coated.

Take a baking sheet and cover with tin foil.

Place half of mix on baking sheet and spread evenly; bake in oven for 5 minutes, let cool.

Repeat with remaining chex mix.

Store in airtight container.

Recipe taken from Directions modified by Susan S.

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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Recipe: Peanut Butter Cookies with Butterscotch Bits

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups chunky peanut butter (not "all natural")
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 11 ounce package butterscotch morsels

In a large bowl, mix flour, baking soda and salt.

Beat butter and peanut butter until smooth.

Gradually add sugar, beating to blend.

Beat in egg and vanilla.

Stir in flour mixture and butterscotch morsels.

Form into a large disk and wrap in plastic.

Chill for 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees; line 2 baking sheets with parchment (or tin foil).

Use hands to form dough into 1 1/2 inch balls.

Place balls about 2 inches apart on cookie sheets.

Using a fork, press balls flat, then press again to form a crisscross pattern.

Bake cookies until lightly browned 10-15 minutes.

Cook on sheets for 10 minutes, then transfer to racks to cool completely.

Repeat with remaining dough.

Makes about 2 dozen

All You magazine
August 2009
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Recipe: Grilled Cheese with Bacon Sandwich

4 slices bread
4 slices bacon
4 slices american cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large skillet, cook bacon to your desired doneness; drain on paper towels.

Take baking sheet and layer with tin foil.

Butter 4 slices of bread, buttered side down on baking sheet.

Top with 2 slices of cheese and bacon.

Top with remaining bread, buttered side up.

Place sandwiches in oven for 5 minutes on one side; turn over and 3 minutes on other side; or until cheese has melted.

Cut sandwiches in half and serve with favorite soup.

Makes 2 sandwiches

My Own Recipe
November 2009
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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Recipe: Cheese Biscuits

2 1/2 cups all-purpose baking mix, Bisquick
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine baking mix, garlic powder, and red pepper; whiisk until blended.

Add egg, milk, sour cream, and 3 tablespoons butter, stirring until thoroughly combined.

Add cheese, stirring just until combined.

On prepared baking sheet drop batter evely into 12 mounds.

Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes.

Sandra Lee Magazine
October/November 2009
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Sunday, November 15, 2009

Recipe: Peanut Butter Cup Brownies

2 sticks unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
4 large eggs
3 cups sugar
2 teaspons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
kosher salt
8 large peanut butter cups, cut into pieces

Heat oven to 400 degrees.

Melt the butter and chocolate in a pan over low heat.

Using a mixer, beat the eggs and sugar until pale yellow and fluffy.

Lower speed and pour in the melted chocolate and vanilla.

Mix in flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Fold in the peanut butter cups.

Scrape into a buttered 9x13 inch baking dish.

Bake until the tip of a knife comes out clean, about 30 minutes.

Makes 24
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Saturday, November 14, 2009

Food Fact: Potatoes

The Basics: Potoates can be divided into two main categores- starchy and waxy. Starchy potatoes like russets are fluffy and floury when cooked. Waxy varieties, such as new potatoes and fingerlings, are low in starch, have a creamy texture, and hold thier shape well when cooked. Yukon Golds are considered a waxy potato but have a slightly higher starch content, so they're especially versatile.

Buying and Storing: Look for potatoes that are firm and free of cracks and bruises. Avoid potatoes that have sprouted "eyes" or have green-tinged skin- both signs of improper storage. Store potatoes in a cool, dark place (not the refrigerator). Waxy potatoes are best used within a week, while starchy varieties keep for several months.

To cook: Pair potatoes with the cooking methods that suit them best. Fingerling and new potatoes are great steamed, boiled, sauteed, or roasted. Yukon Golds can be prepared like other waxy potatoes and are especially delicious when mashed. Russet potatoes can be sauteed, baked, cooked in gratins, or fried.

Martha Stewart Everyday Food magazine
October 2009
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Food Fact: Onions

They're the foundation for an endless variety of recipes and are also great when eaten as a side dish. To make sure you always have fresh onions on hand, buy ones that are firm and heavy for their size, with shiny, papery skins and no bruising. At home, store them loose away from potatoes in a cool, dark place (not the refrigerator). They'll keep for up to 1 month (white onions have more moisture, so they will keep for a shorter amount of time.)

Martha Stewart Everyday Food Magazine
October 2009
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Sunday, November 8, 2009

Recipe: Layered Mexican Bake

1 pound ground beef
1/2 white onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 cup salsa
1/2 package frozen corn
2 toritillas
sour cream
3/4 cup cheddar cheese
green onions

Heat oven to 375 degrees.

Brown meat with onions and peppers in large skillet on medium-high heat.

Stir in chili powder, cook 1 minute.

Add salsa and corn; mix well.

Simmer 5 minutes.

Spread 1 cup meat sauce onto bottom of 8 inch square baking dish.

Add 1 tortilla on top.

Add another layer of meat sauce.

Add tortilla.

Add remaining meat sauce.

Place layer of cheese on top.

Add green onions on top.

Bake in oven at 375 degrees for 15 minutes or until heated through.

Add dollops of sour cream on each piece served.

Recipe taken from and modifed to my own
November 2009
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Saturday, November 7, 2009

Recipe: Cheesy Hash Skillet

6 slices of bacon
1 small onion, chopped
4 cups frozen Southern-style hash browns
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
6 eggs

Cook bacon in large nonstick on medium heat until crisp.

Remove bacon from skillet, reserving 3 tablespoon drippings in skillet.

Drain bacon on paper towels.

Add onions and potatoes to skillet; cover.

Cook on medium-high heat 14 minutes or until potatoes are browned, stirring occsionally.

Stir in cheese.

Make 6 small wells in potato mixture; fill with eggs.

Top with bacon; cook, covered 3 to 4 minutes or just until eggs are set.

Let stand, covered 1 minute.
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Kitchen Tip: No-Slip Cutting Board

Whether you slice, dice, or chop, cutting boards tend to slip around as you use them, which means you're more likely to accidentally cut yourself. To keep your work surface stable, moisten and fold a kitchen towel or a length of paper towels so that it's slightly smaller than the size of your cutting board. Place it on the counter, and then position your board on top.

Martha Stewart Everyday Food magazine
Date unknown
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Food Fact: Eggs

Because eggs are an excellent source of protein, they help you feel fuller longer, give sustained energy, and may also help build and preserve muscle strength.

Although the egg whites contain the majority of the protein, the yolks are actually the most nutrient-dense part of the egg. Besides protein, the yolks contain lutein, which is especially important for eye health, choline, essential for brain function, and folate, vital to cell production.

Martha Stewart Everyday Food magazine
Date unknown
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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Random Picks: Quote

"When I walk into my kitchen today, I am not alone. Whether we know it or not, none of us is. We bring fathers and mothers and kitchen tables, and every meal we have ever eaten. Food is never just food. It's also a way of getting at something else: who we are, who we have been, and who we want to be."

-Molly Wizenberg,
From A Homemade Life
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Monday, November 2, 2009

Recipe: M&M Blondies

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces, room temperature
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
1 package plain M&Ms

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line an 8 inch square baking pan with tin foil leaving a 2 inch overhang; butter foil.

In a mixer, put in butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar.

Mix in eggs and vanilla.

Add flour and mix just until moistened.

Transfer batter to prepared pan and smooth top.

Arrange candies in 12 rows on top of dough.

Bake until top of cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes.

Set pan on a wire rack and let cool completely.

Using foil overhang, lift cake from pan and transfer to a cutting board; cut into 16 squares.

To store: keep in an airtight container at room temperature, up to 2 days)

Makes 16 squares.

NOTE: You can have fun and be festive with the M&Ms. For example: Halloween you could decorate top with brown, orange, green, and yellow M&Ms. Christmas you could do red and green. Valentine's Day could be pink and get the idea!

Recipe taken from Martha Stewart Everyday Food magazine and modified
Ocober 2009
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