Monday, June 14, 2010

Curried Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Curried Chicken Lettuce Wraps

I am not a huge fan of curry, but it totally works in this recipe. It does not have a curry flavor at all...the curry just gives it a tiny bit of a bite that is so delicious! All I can say is, chicken salad ain't just for baby showers any more!

1/2 c. sour cream
1/4 c. mayo
1 tsp. ground curry powder
1 garlic clove, pressed
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 c. finely diced celery
1 Granny Smith apple, chopped
1/2 cup grapes, cut in half
1/4 c. finely chopped red onion
2 c. diced cooked chicken or 2 cans of chicken
1/4 c. toasted sliced almonds or walnuts
1/2 c. sweetened dried cranberries (if non sweetened is cheaper I just add a little sugar in the mix)
12 Bibb/or Butter lettuce leaves(about one head) or soft tortillas

First combine sour cream, mayo, curry powder, garlic, and salt- mix well.
Then mix in celery, apple, onion, grapes, chicken and cranberries.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Spinach Salad Al-La Yumminess

I used to make this salad a lot, but through the course of time, this dish of sheer spinachy bliss was forgotten. Well, it is forgotten no longer. I will now re-introduce this favorite into our weekly menu. It is a great vegetarian dish, or could easily be spruced up with some diced grilled chicken. I've already had three bowls of this and fully expect to eat one more before bed. I just can't get enough of it!

Please note: This isn't really a recipe as much as it is a guide. Have fun with it!

Spinach, washed and chopped
Red Onion, use however much you want and cut them however you want
Crumbled Bacon
Almonds...I like to candy mine by sauteing in a bit of EVOO, white sugar, and a splash of water
Feta Cheese, crumbled (YUM!)
Mandarin Oranges

Combine everything BUT the fruit. Put that on individual bowls so the salad doesn't get soggy.

You could definitely use poppyseed dressing for this, but I prefer THIS dressing. I just get about 1/4 cup of Balsamic Vinegar and squeeze the juice of a slice of orange into it. Definitely don't put the dressing on the big salad bowl. Do it individually so the spinach doesn't get soggy...because seriously, who wants to eat soggy spinach?

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Fruit Cobbler

Part of my job is to shoot and edit cooking videos, and yesterday I edited next week's video - peach cobbler. After that, I couldn't resist coming home and making a cobbler myself. We happened to have strawberries, blackberries and apricots on hand, so I simply googled "easy berry cobbler" and got a lot of results. I basically combined these two recipes, and added something from the video - chopped pecans in the batter. Here is the general idea - melt 1/4 cup butter in bottom of 8x8 baking dish. Mix 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar, 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder and 3/4 cup milk. Stir in pecans if desired (I probably used about a 1/2 cup) and pour over the butter in the pan, but do not stir. Top with 2-2 1/2 cups fruit. Sprinkle 1/4 sugar over top (you can use up to a cup depending on sweetness of the fruit) and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Here is what mine looked like going into the oven:
If I was going to do it over again, I would cut the milk down to about a half a cup. It took longer than 30 minutes to bake - probably closer to 45 - and I should have slipped a cookie sheet on the rack below because some of the juice spilled over and we got to hear our smoke detector for the first time. But, it was soooo delicious once it was finally done, especially served warm with vanilla ice cream!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Wookie Cookies

This recipe comes from my ex-husband Travis. They are SO very delicious. No really, they are. You should stop whatever you are doing and make some right now!

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Put the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a mixing bowl. Stir until well mixed. Set aside.
Put the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar in another mixing bowl. Using the electric mixer set on high speed, beat together until well blended and creamy, about 3 minutes. (You can do this with a wooden spoon, but it will take longer.) Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and stir with the wooden spoon until blended. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Scoop up a rounded tablespoonful of the dough and drop onto a baking sheet. Repeat until you have used up all the dough. Leave about 1 inch between the cookies because they spread as they bake.
Using pot holders, put the baking sheets in the oven. Bake until golden brown, about 10 minutes.
Again, using pot holders, remove the baking sheets from the oven. Lift the cookies from the baking sheets with a spatula, and place on cooling racks. Let cool completely.
Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ham Fried Rice

2 eggs
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
2 teaspoons soy sauce
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 onion
8 ounces cooked ham
1 green onion, washed
6 tablespoons oil for frying, or as needed
1/2 cup peas, fresh, canned or frozen
4 cups cold cooked rice

Lightly beat the eggs. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon each of the oyster sauce and soy sauce. Add a bit of salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Peel and dice the onion. Dice the ham and green onion.

Heat a wok or frying pan on medium-high to high heat. When the oil is hot, add 2 tablespoons oil. Add the eggs. Scramble lightly and remove from the pan. Clean out the pan.

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in the pan or wok. When the oil is hot, add the onion. Stir-fry briefly, then add the ham and the green peas. Stir-fry and remove from the pan. Clean out the pan.

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in the wok. Reduce the heat to medium and add the rice, stirring with chopsticks to break up the clumps. Stir in the remainder of the soy sauce and oyster sauce. Season with salt and pepper if desired.

Add the cooked meat and vegetables back into the pan. Stir in the scrambled egg. Heat through and stir in the green onion. Serve hot.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Lemon Raspberry Cream Cheese Bars

This is a recipe that I "adapted"...and I use that term VERY loosely...from one of my favorite foodie blogs, Our Best Bites.

So,it's confession time, I am absolutely head-over-heels in love with lemon. Just thinking about lemons makes my mouth water, and not in a pucker-up-your-face type of a way, but in a oh-my-goodness-die-of-happiness type of a way. For Mother's Day I wanted something lemonicious, and I did not want my husband to botch it up by making it himself (you know I love you Todd), so I pulled out this recipe and kicked it up a notch. Notice how there are no pictures? That's right, it was so amazingly delicious that the poor camera never even made it out of its bag before Todd and I ate it all up. Mmmmm.... So, without further ado, here is the recipe.

Lemon Raspberry Cream Cheese Bars

(original recipe: Creamy Lemon Bars)

20 Nilla Wafers, finely crushed
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) cold real butter
1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese (you can use 1/3-less fat cream cheese)
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 Tbsp. flour
3 Tbsp. grated lemon peel, divided
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 tsp. Baking Powder
powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line 8-inch square baking pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides of pan. Spray lightly with non-stick spray and set aside.

In a bowl, combine Nilla Wafer crumbs, 1/2 cup flour and the brown sugar. Chop butter into small pieces and then cut into crumb mixture with a pastry blender.

Press crumb mixture firmly onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake 15 min.

While crust is cooking, beat cream cheese and granulated sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Add eggs, 2 Tbsp. flour, and baking powder; mix well. Blend in 1 Tbsp. lemon zest, and lemon juice.

(This is where I "changed" the recipe, and if you ask me, it was pure genius!)

I mushed up some raspberries and spread it on the crust BEFORE I poured my lemon mixture on. I used frozen raspberries that I had set out to thaw and then drained. I gave the crust a good coating of raspberry, but not too much that the seeds would get in the way of the lemon's creamy goodness.

Bake 25 to 30 min. or until center is set. Cool completely. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours, but preferably overnight. These bars improve with time. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and remaining 2 Tbsp. grated lemon peel just before cutting into squares to serve. Store leftover squares in refrigerator.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Nine for Dinner

I just wanted to take a minute and introduce you to my cousin Jenny and her fun new recipe site. She is wealth of information on the art of feeding a family, getting creative and finding your niche in the kitchen.
We have been blessed to have her share a few of her favorite recipes on this blog and are thrilled that she has branched out and taken it to the next level.
Please click on the link and start following her today!