26 March 2009

Curry Chicken and Pesto

Today I made some Pesto to put in the freezer for my parents. Of course I had to try it, to make sure it is suitable to save. YUM! I might have to use some hand have pesto pasta tonight for dinner!
1/2 c Dried Basil
1 c Parmesan, grated
3/4 c Olive Oil
2 T Minced Garlic
1/3 c Pine Nuts, toasted
Combine in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Serve over pasta, with chicken, on French Bread, Garlic Bread, or Sandwiches (ie. Turkey Pesto).

I have also been wanting some Curried Chicken Salad. So I finally made some today, but I only froze half of it for my mom. I had to keep some out for the rest of this week, what else am I supposed to eat? I've frozen everything else!
Curried Chicken Salad
3 Chicken Breasts, cooked and cut into cubes (about 4 cups)
-I cooked mine in garlic for more flavor
3/4 c Mayonnaise
1-2 T Curry
1/4 c Toasted Pine Nuts (I had some left over from the pesto)
1/4 c Carrots, chopped
Chopped Apple or Grapes
Mix all together in a bowl, and serve plain or on sandwiches. Enjoy!

25 March 2009

Strawberry Ice Cream

I made some brownies today, with orange in them, yum. Then I made some Strawberry Ice Cream, except I didn't have enough Strawberries, so I had to add some Raspberries. Then I ate them together. They were amazing! The only problem is: I forgot to take a picture. Drat. I have a pic of the ice cream, and one of the brownies, but no Sundae :(

I only used half of this recipe, so the notes correspond with a half batch.

Strawberry Ice Cream

2 lb. Strawberries, hulled (I used frozen berries but only had about 1/2 lb, so I used about 1/2 lb Raspberries)
2 T Lemon Juice
6 Large Eggs
1 c Sugar
1 can Sweetened Condensed Milk
4 c Half and Half (I used about 1/3-1/2 c Heavy Cream and filled the rest of the 2 c with 2%)
3 T Vanilla

Blend the berries in a food processor, leaving some chunks.Cream the eggs and sugar for no less than 10 minutes. Add the Sweetened Condensed Milk, half and half, and vanilla, and mix. Add the berries and mix well. Freez according to mixer instructions. (I misread the instructions, and ended up beating everything except the berries for about 10 minutes, then I added them and beat it for about 2 more. Not all of it fit in my little mixer, I had about 1/2 c left over.)

24 March 2009

Sundae Brownies

I got this brownie recipe from the Farm Journal's Best-Ever Cookies book, that I borrowed from my aunt.

Best-Ever Brownies

3/4 c All-purpose Flour, sifted
1/2 t Baking Powder
1/4 t Salt
1/2 c Butter, softened
1 c Sugar
2 Eggs
1 t Vanilla
2 oz Unsweetened Chocolate, melted and cooled

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt. Cream the butter and sugar, add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Add the chocolate and vanilla and mix. Add the dry ingredients, blending well. Pour into greased 9 in. square baking pan (I used a 9x13 in. and let my brownies be pretty thin). Bake at 350* for 30-35 minutes (I did 20 minutes so mine were very soft and chewy).

Banana Bread

My dad and my sister are really picky about Banana Bread, I can never remember which way they like it. More cakey or more like bread, I think it's the cake, but even then I've made so many recipes who knows which one they're asking for! This is the recipe from The Joy of Cooking that I made on Sunday for volleyball. Too bad no one showed up!

Banana Bread

1 3/4 c All-purpose Flour
2 1/4 t Baking Powder
1/2 t Salt
1/3 c Butter, softened
2/3 c Sugar
1 t Lemon Juice
1-2 Eggs, beaten
1 1/4 c Banana Pulp (I use the black ones out of the freezer, so they're already pulp)

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together. In a large bowl (I used the stand mixer) cream the butter, sugar and lemon. Add the eggs and banana and mix well. Add the flour mixture in batches.

Pour into greased bread pan, and bake for about 1 hour at 350*. Cool before slicing. It crumbles a lot if you cut it hot, but the butter melts on it really well, and it is heavenly.

Chicken Enchaladas

Ok, so most of my pictures are not of the actual Enchaladas. I forgot to take pictures before I wrapped them up to freeze, so I did a quick sketch (eek). I'm cooking some things for my parents, becaues I worry they'll starve when I start my job. Which happens to be 2 weeks away! I'll be leaving to go there about the time they get back from England.

Oh, I would like to say that I made this recipe up because they are fantastic, but I must give the credit to my friends Kevin and Tamara. They made these for me the last time I visited them. Now they'll have to come visit me! Or maybe I'll take goodies to their wedding. Anyway, Enchaladas:

Chicken Enchaladas

1 T Olive Oil
1 T Minced Garlic
1 1/2 lb. Chicken Breast
1/2 Onion, finely chopped
2 cans Enchalada Sauce
Cheddar Cheese, shredded, I use about 4 cups, at least
1 can Green Chiles

Heat the garlic and olive oil on medium low heat in a frying pan that has a lid. When hot add the chicken, and cover wtih the lid. Cook, checking regularly, until chicken is cooked through. If it starts scorching, add about 1/2 c water to the bottom of the pan.

When the chicken is done, cool on a cutting board for a couple minutes. Then, using a fork, shred the chicken.

Put the onions in the pan, with any drippings, and saute until they start to brown. Add the shredded chicken, 1 can enchalada sauce, about 2 cups cheese, and the chiles. Cook on medium heat until the cheese melts.

Ready a baking dish. Roll the mixture in tortillas and place them side by side in the baking dish. Cover with the other can of enchalada sauce, and the rest of the cheese. Bake for 20 mintues at 350*. Serve hot with any toppings: Green Onions, Sour Cream, Green Chile, more Cheese...

I usually have to pack the last couple tortillas with A LOT of filling, otherwise it won't get used. This time I was craving a crunchy tortilla, quesidilla style. So, I put the remaining filling on a tortilla, folded it in half, and broiled it for about 2 minutes on each side. Then I put some green taco sauce on it. It was definitely amazing. I will have to do this again.

Finally Flapjacks

I mentioned Flapjacks a long time ago, and I finally made them again. And I remembered to take a picture! These are not soft like the ones I had with Claire in England, but they are still really good, and so easy to make.
3/8 c Butter (6 T)
1/4 c Sugar, caster or light brown
2 T Golden or Maple Syrup (I've used maple, I'm not sure what golden syrup is yet)
2 c Rolled Oats
Put butter, sugar and syrup in a saucepan, heat gently until the ingredients have melted. add oats and mix thoroughly. place in a 7 or 8 in. square baking tin and press down firmly with a flat-bladed knife.
Bake at 350* for 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Mark in fingers while still hot, but remove from the tin when nearly cold.
I've found that the less you cook them the more likely they'll be to stick together, rather than crumble apart. Also they'll be slightly softer, if you prefer them more like the cookie dough English version I had.

Jewel Cookies

I cooked a lot yesterday. And I have some stuff that I've been meaning to post for a while. I'll try to get to them today! YESS! First of all, yesterday I made some beautiful Jewel Cookies, little almond shortbread bites with some amazing jam on the top. MMMMMM... Also, since my parents are finally visiting my sister in England, I HAVE THE HOUSE TO MYSELF!!!!! So I'll probably spend most of my time cooking, yay.

Jeweled Thumbprints

3/4 c Butter, softened
3/4 c Powdered Sugar
1 Egg Yolk
1/2 t Almond Extract
1 3/4 c All-purpose Flour
1/2 c Jam (the recipe calls for raspberry or apricot preserves, but I used jam: Apricot, Raspberry, Peach, and Strawberry)

Cream the butter and sugar, beat in the egg yolk and almond. Gradually add the flour. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or until easy to handle. (I didn't need to refrigerate mine)

Roll into 3/4 in. balls. Place 1 in. apart on greased (I used ungreased, oops) baking sheets. Using the end of a wooden spoon handle, make an indention in the center of each ball.

Bake at 350* for 12-14 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool. Fill with preserves or jam. I filled mine still warm and they were amazing, they melted the jam just a little so it fell into the indention, rather than sitting on top.

19 March 2009


I just wrote an amazing entry about breakfast, but the internet deleated it when I tried to add a picture. I am not pleased. You're luck you're getting this much right now, since I am fuming...

This recipe happens to be off the canister that corn meal comes in.


2 1/2 c All-purpose Flour
1 1/2 c Corn Meal
1/2 c Sugar
4 t Baking Powder
1 t Salt (optional) I don't use this
2 c Milk
1/2 c Vegetable Oil

2 Eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 400*. Grease a 9x13 in. pan. Sift the flour, corn meal, sugar, baking powder and salt together. Whisk the eggs, add the oil and whisk. Add the milk to eggs, and whisk again. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, and mix until just moistened, the batter should be lumpy. Pour into greased pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Serve warm with butter, honey, caro syrup, jam, or any other topping.

Hey, it was saved! This is the post that was supposed to go with the cornbread! Enjoy.

So, I was talking to my friend, Heidi, the other day and we were talking about breakfasts. I told her that I LOVE breakfast, but I don't like to go out to eat that particular meal. No restaurants have anything that I like, except maybe hash browns. But the strange thing is that I like waffles, and pancakes, and muffins. I just don't like Belgian waffles, or restaurant pancakes. So Heidi diagnosed me: I love breakfast, but only if I (or my dad) make it. Here is an excellent breakfast treat, and it's easy and you can make so much other stuff with it: Johnny Cakes, Stuffing, it thickens Chili, and so on...the amazing, the incredible CORNBREAD!

17 March 2009

Broccoli Beef, Hey It's Green!

The other day I made some Broccoli Beef. I'm pretty sure it's not a real Chinese recipe, but I think it tastes good, it's easy and it's...something, I'll figure it out later. I was debating what to post today, and realized that this is very fitting, with the green, so here goes

Broccoli Beef

1/2 lb. Beef, sliced thinly
1/2 Heads of Broccoli, cut into small florets.
1/4 c Teriyaki Sauce
1/4 c Soy Sauce
1 t Sesame Oil
1-2 t Worcester Sauce
1-2 T Olive Oil, or Peanut Oil
1 T Garlic, minced
1 t Vegetable Base (I use Better Than Bullion), you can use any flavor, this is just what I had
1-2 T Corn Starch
Cooked white rice

Marinate the beef in the Teriyaki, Soy Sauce, Sesame Oil, and Worcester Sauce for at least 30 minutes. Turn a wok, or frying pan on to medium-low heat. Heat the garlic in the oil until hot. Add the beef and the sauce it's been marinating in. Brown the beef, then add the vegetable base, in 1/2-1 cup of water. Continue cooking until beef is almost done. Mix the cornstarch in about 1/3 cup of water and add to the mixture. When the sauce starts to thicken, add the broccoli and cover for about 5 minutes. Serve over rice.

11 March 2009

Aww, Baby Cakes

I was inspired by the Layer Cake I made last weekend. I decided I would try it with a white cake, but I wanted them to be little, cupcake size. They turned out pretty well, so I'm giving 2 dozon to the Kiwanis bake sale tomorrow. They taste amazing, you should buy some!

I used the recipe for the Smith Family Layer Cake, but only made a third of it for the trial batch.

1/3 Smith Family Layer Cake
1 1/3 c Flour
1/2 t Baking Powder
pinch of salt
1/2 c Butter
3/4 c Sugar
2 Eggs
1 c Milk
1/2 t Vanilla

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In another bowl cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time and beat well. Add the milk and vanilla in batches, alternating with the flour mixture.

Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray and add about 1 tablespoon of batter to each cup. Bake for about 8-10 minutes at 350*F. Run a knife around the edges of each cake and turn out onto a rack to cool. This recipe makes about 4 dozon small cakes.

1/2 Batch Fudge Icing
1 1/2 c Sugar
1/4 c Cocoa
1/2 c Butter
3 oz (1/3 c) Heavy Whipping Cream
3 oz 2% Milk
1/2 t Vanilla

Bring the sugar, cocoa, butter, cream and milk to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat and continue to simmer until the liquid starts to thicken. Remove from heat for about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla and mix well.

Place foil cupcake liners on a rack and put a small cake in the bottom of each. Drizzle about 1 teaspoon over each cake. Add another cake and repeat twice. The baby cakes should have 3 layers each of cake and fudge. This makes 16 Baby Cakes

You can also make these without the wrappers, but it's much messier.

Although they look prettier when serving them for dessert!

For the bake sale I made a full batch of the cake and fudge. I ended up with about 4 dozen Baby Cakes!

I then used the Dark Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting and put a little dab on top of each little cake. They looked so pretty! I almost didn't want to give them away, almost.

08 March 2009


I made some Snickerdoodles last week with the kids I watch. We make cookies a lot, they have so much fun adding ingredients and mixing. Maybe I've inspired them to become Chefs when they grow up.

1 1/2 c Sugar
1/2 c Butter, softened
1 t Vanilla
2 Eggs
2 3/4 c Flour, I used Whole Wheat
1/2 t Baking Soda
1/4 t Salt
2 T Sugar
2 t Cinnamon

Heat the oven to 400°F. Next, in a large bowl, beat 1 1/2 cups sugar and margarine until light and fluffy.

Add vanilla and eggs and blend well.

Add flour, baking soda, and salt, and mix well.

Mix 2 Tbsp sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon in small bowl. Shape the dough into balls (approx 1-inch or whatever your preference)

and roll in the cinnamon-sugar mixture.

Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake at 400°F for 7 to 9 minutes or until set. Immediately remove from cookie sheets and cool completely. Enjoy!

05 March 2009

Novelty Cake, aka The Richest Cake Ever!

Obviously the novelty of having a blog is wearing off. My sister has to cajole and basically force me to add more posts now. That's kind of sad, it's only been a month and a half...

Anyway I made this amazing cake. It was my first attempt at a layer cake. I followed the Bakerella instructions for her 14 for 14 cake, but I used the cake mix from my Hot Water Devil's Food Cake. I used the frosting that her instructions had, and man it was amazing. This is so impossibly rich! Chocolate cake, rich on its own, with chocolate glaze and chocolate cream cheese frosting. Whew! But man, it went fast! I did this recipe once with 9 layers and once with 10, I wasn't too careful about the batter measurements. This is what it looked like!
I baked the cake in 8" rounds three at a time for 11-12 minutes.
When the last one was cooking I started the Icing for between the layers. This is from a link on the Bakerella site.
1 c Butter, cut up
1 can Evaporated Milk
1/2 c Cocoa
3 c Sugar
1 T Vanilla
Mix sugar and cocoa in a sauce pan. Add butter and milk and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and continue cooking until the icing thickens. Remove from heat and let sit for 3 minutes. Add the vanilla and mix.
Place 1 layer of the cake on a cake board (I used cardboard wrapped in foil) on a rack over a jelly-roll pan to catch the icing. Scoop about 1/4-1/3 c icing on to the layer and spread it over the layer. Add another layer of cake and continue the process until all the layers have been used. Pour the remaining icing over the top of the cake and let it drip down.
You can spread the icing as it drips so that it covers the whole cake. Then let the icing set until firm. You can also serve it warm and be done at this point.
I continued and put Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting over the top. I got this recipe from Bakerella.
Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2 c Butter, softened
8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 c Cocoa
1 lb Powdered Sugar
1 t Vanilla
1-3 T Milk
Cream the butter and cream cheese. Add the cocoa and mix. Add the powdered sugar in batches, mixing between each addition. Add the vanilla and as much milk as needed for desired consistency.
I then slathered this over the outside of the beautiful cake:
I thought it looked so amazing! Especially for my first one!
Of course we had to have it for dinner so that I could see what it looked like on the inside!


01 March 2009

Cupcake Bites

I finally used the instructions on my cupcake pops link. I didn't have the pop sticks, so I made Cupcake Bites! They were delicious.

I decided to make some chocolate ones, because almost everyone I know LOVES chocolate. I used a recipe for Hot Water Devil's Food Cake. Yum.
Hot Water Devil's Food Cake
1/2 c Shortening
1 1/2 c Sugar
2 Eggs
1/2 c Cocoa
3/4 c Sweet Milk
2 c All-purpose Flour
1/4 t Salt
2 t Soda
1 c Boiling Water
Mix in order given, when mixed thoroughly add boiling water. Batter will be thin. Bake at 375* for 35-40 minutes in a 9x13 in. pan until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
We almost always double this recipe and use Hershey's One Bowl Buttercream Frosting with Orange Extract for birthdays. But this recipe only needs a single for about 50 cupcake bites!
Let the cake cool, and make Cream Cheese Frosting. I guess you could buy it too, but its not nearly as good.
Cream Cheese Frosting
1/2 c Butter, softened
8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
1 T Vanilla
1 lb Powdered Sugar
Cream the butter and cheese, add the vanilla. Add the powdered sugar in batches.
When the cake is completely cool, crumble it into a large bowl. And I mean LARGE. Add 2 cups of the cream cheese frosting (1 can or about 1/2 of the recipe here). And mix together. Mash the frosting into the cake with a wooden spoon, or knead it with your hands. When the frosting is all mixed in, use a 1 T spoon or a small cookie scoop and roll the mixture into thick oval shapes. When all rolled press into a flower shaped cookie cutter. Mold the cake mixture into a small cupcake shape. (You can just roll them into balls an be done, also.)

I ended up with 50 little cupcakes. When they were all set on the pan they looked like truffles!

Melt candy for the bottom, I used Vanilla Almond Bark. Dip the bottoms in the candy and place on waxed paper with the top side down, to set. I also used a little bit of yellow food coloring to make the candy look like cupcake wrappers.

You can do the same for the top with any kind of candy you like. I decided to use frosting, Hershey's One Bowl Buttercream Frosting, to be exact.
Hershey's One Bowl Buttercream Frosting
6 T Butter, softened
1/3-3/4 Cocoa (1/3 is pretty light but 3/4 is EXTREMELY rich)
2 2/3 c Powdered Sugar
1/3 c Milk
1 t Vanilla
In small mixer bowl, cream butter. Add cocoa and sugar alternately with milk. Beat to spreading consistency (additional milk may be necessary). Blend in the vanilla. Makes about 2 cups of frosting.
I then used a small spatula to spread about 1 tablespoon, maybe less, of frosting on each cupcake bite.
These are very rich! But very tasty.
I did the same with my pumpkin cookie recipe, just baked it as a cake, then crumbled it...but I left them as Cookie Balls and glazed them with a powdered sugar glaze. Mmmmmm!