lattice chicken pot pie
Mexican street corn pasta
chicken Ghiveci
creamy chicken tortilla soup, jalapeno jack popovers
butter basted ribeyes, twice baked potatoes, broccoli
brisket tacos, pinto beans
pork souvlaki, naan

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Chocolate Ganache Doughnuts

Chocolate Ganache Doughnuts
My doughnut pan gets used a lot. I rationalize it because I am baking instead of frying doughnuts.  But that all goes out the window when you dipped the baked doughnuts in a rich chocolate ganache.  Miss F was in charge of the chocolate dipping and I think she did an amazing job.  She did lick the ganache coated spoon and declared that these doughnuts didn't even need sprinkles.  She loves to put sprinkles on everything, so that is saying a lot.  Feel free to add sprinkles or any other candy topper, but these doughnuts are standouts on their own.  Miss F had two.
Chocolate Ganache Doughnuts

1 cup flour
¾ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 large egg
½ cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ cup chocolate chips
3 tablespoons cream

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare the doughnut pan with cooking spray.

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar. In a two cup measure, whisk together the butter, egg, buttermilk, and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, stir until just incorporated.

Spoon the batter into the prepared doughnut pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Let the doughnuts cool on a wire rack.

In a shallow bowl, add the chocolate chips and cream. Microwave for 45 seconds, stirring every 15 seconds. Stir until all the chips are melted and the ganache is smooth. Dip the doughnuts into the ganache and let set.
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Monday, April 28, 2014

Strawberry Sour Cream Pancakes

Strawberry Sour Cream Pancakes
We once again headed to Froberg Farms this year and came home with three buckets of strawberries. I made a ton of strawberry jam, ate them sliced over ice cream and of course, served them up for breakfast. Strawberry pancakes are my favorite kind of pancakes, especially when they are overflowing with juicy, ripe strawberries.  Miss F dipped hers in chocolate syrup, but I enjoyed mine plain.  The strawberries were so sweet and delicious, there was no need for syrup.  I still have a lot of strawberries left, probably destined for strawberry cream cheese muffins.  I adapted this recipe from the Pioneer Woman.
Strawberry Sour Cream Pancakes

½ cup flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup sour cream
2 eggs
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup chopped strawberries

Heat a cast iron skillet or griddle over medium heat.

Stir the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt together in a medium bowl, then stir in the sour cream. Whisk together the eggs and vanilla in a separate bowl , stir into the flour-sour cream mixture. Gently fold in the strawberries.

Grease the pan lightly with shortening. Using a ice cream scoop, dish the batter onto the prepared pan. Cook until bubble form across the surface of the pancake, about 2 minutes. Flip them over and cook a minute or two more. Serve.
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Friday, April 25, 2014

Greek Shrimp Salad

Greek Shrimp Salad
After my trip to Aspen for our wedding anniversary, I knew I wanted to eat lighter. The food I enjoyed on the weekend getaway was amazing, but it was all quite rich. I adapted this recipe from my recipe for Shrimp Gyros, with a Greek vinaigrette from Ina Garten.  This salad totally filled my cravings for something healthy and I prepared it in under 15 minutes.  Miss F only ate the shrimp, I am still working on getting her to try salad.  Anyone have any tips to get a five year old to try lettuce?  Feel free to add olives and feta to this salad, I don't enjoy either, but I realize they are traditional to a Greek salad.
Greek Shrimp Salad

2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
¼ cup red wine vinegar
pinch of sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ cup olive oil

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Juice of two small or one large lemon
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon oregano
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 cucumber, chopped
2 roma tomatoes, chopped
½ red onion, sliced
1 head of romaine lettuce, chopped

For the vinaigrette, whisk together the garlic, oregano, mustard, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Still whisking, slowly add the olive oil to make an emulsion. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together one tablespoon of olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, oregano, salt and pepper. Toss the shrimp in the marinade and set aside for 5 to 10 minutes. In a large sauté pan, heat the remaining olive oil over medium high heat. Sauté the shrimp for 5 to 6 minutes, until pink and cooked through.

Toss the cucumber, tomato, onion and lettuce with the vinaigrette. Top with shrimp and serve.
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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Tuna Avocado Poke Bowl

Tuna Avocado Poke Bowl
This was not on my meal plan at all, but after seeing Jaida's post for Salmon Avocado Poke Bowl on Sweet Beginnings, I knew I had to make it straight away. But with fresh tuna instead of salmon.  I changed up the recipe a little, adding lemon juice and jalapeno.  This meal was amazing.  Miss F totally turned up her nose, she had some rice and that was it.  I ate the entire bowl.  It was amazing.  One of the best things I have made in a while.  I will certainly be trying this with salmon, but I loved it with tuna.
Tuna Avocado Poke Bowl

1/3 cup soy sauce
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 shallot, minced
1 jalapeno, minced
juice of one lemon
1 teaspoon sesame oil
½ teaspoon ground ginger
1 pound fresh tuna
1 avocado, cubed
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
2 cups cooked rice, cooled
rice wine vinegar

In a medium bowl combine soy sauce, sugar, shallot, jalapeno, lemon juice, sesame oil, and ginger. Set aside. Cut the tuna into ½ inch chunks and add to the marinade bowl, along with the avocado. Serve immediately, topped with sesame seeds, or refrigerate until ready to serve. Sprinkle a little vinegar over the rice, then top with the tuna avocado mixture.
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Monday, April 21, 2014

Chicken Pot Pie with Cream Cheese Biscuits

Chicken Pot Pie with Cream Cheese Biscuits
So one of C's most favorite meals I cook is chicken pot pie, in all its varieties.  I was quite wary of making a new recipe for it, but I have been wanting to try Cook Like a Champion's version for quite awhile.  C took Miss F to see the new Muppets movie while I stayed home and baked this amazing dish.  One burned arm later, I had a new favorite version of chicken pot pie.  C and Miss F loved it as well, but they didn't eat too much, turns out they were quite full from the bucket full of popcorn they had shared.  No matter, more pot pie for me.
Chicken Pot Pie with Cream Cheese Biscuits

For the biscuits:
2½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
4 ounces cream cheese, cold
¾ cup buttermilk, cold

For the filling:
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1 small onion, diced
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, diced
1 small garlic clove, minced
1½ cup thinly diced carrots
1½ cups frozen peas, thawed
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
1½ cups whole milk
4 ounces cream cheese
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

To make the biscuits, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pepper, sugar and chives in a medium bowl. Add the butter and cream cheese and work with your fingers to incorporate them into the flour mixture until it is unevenly crumbly. Make a well in the center and add the buttermilk. Use a fork to mix it into the dry ingredients.

Turn out the shaggy dough onto a lightly-floured work surface. Knead until it comes together and press it into a circle about 1½ inches thick. Use a floured biscuit cutter (1½ to 2-inches) to cut biscuits. Press together the dough scraps and repeat until no dough remains. Place biscuits on a small cookie sheet and refrigerate until ready to bake.

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a medium saucepan set over medium heat. Add the onions and chicken, cook for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and continue cooking an additional minute. Add the carrots and peas and cook for another 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons butter in the same saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour. The mixture will be very thick. Cook for 1 minute, then reduce heat to low and whisk in the chicken broth. Once no bits of flour remain, whisk in the milk and cream cheese. Increase to medium-low heat and continue cooking until the cream cheese has melted. Add the chicken and vegetables, taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Transfer filling into a 9x13-inch baking dish. Place the biscuits on top of the chicken mixture and brush with milk. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the biscuits are golden and the filling along the sides of the dish is bubbling. Allow to cool slightly before serving.
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Friday, April 18, 2014

Cajun Shrimp Fettucine Alfredo

I have a complete Cajun pasta obsession. It is nearly as bad as my Carbornara obsession at this point. When I saw this recipe for Cajun Shrimp Fettucine Alfredo from Closet Kitchen on Pinterest, I knew I had to make it.  This is the perfect weeknight dinner for Miss F and myself.  She had to eat her pasta separate from the shrimp, but she ate it all without issue.  I inhaled mine, it was delicious.  I still have issues cooking fettucine.  I always get noodles that stick together no matter how big of pot I use.  There is something about it that just doesn't work for me.  But they are the best noodles for this dish.  And Miss F didn't mind a bit (neither did I!) 
Cajun Shrimp Fettucine Alfredo

12 ounces fettucine
1 tablespoon butter
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup white wine
1 cup cream
1 cup grated Parmesan
2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
fresh parsley, minced

Prepare the pasta per package directions.

Melt the butter in a skillet over medium-high heat, toss the shrimp in the Cajun seasoning, add to pan and cook 2 to 3 minutes per side, set aside. Add the garlic to the pan and sauté until fragrant, about a 30 seconds. Deglaze the pan with the wine, add the heavy cream, parmesan and Cajun seasoning and cook about 3 to 5 minutes. Toss the pasta in with the alfredo sauce and shrimp, sprinkle with parsley.
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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Jalapeno Creamed Corn

Jalapeno Creamed Corn
Miss F was super disappointed when I told her we were having "tiny corn" instead of corn on the cob. She was so excited for corn on the cob, but once she tried this, she was just as happy. She referred to the minced jalapenos as "peas," but she ate them nonetheless. This is a really simple side that takes minimal effort, but really boosts the flavor of a boring old bag of frozen corn.  If you want this to be even tastier, but with far more effort, fresh corn would be equally fantastic and cook up exactly the same.  Right now it isn't worth bothering with, but I will add the extra work once sweet summer corn is available.
Jalapeno Creamed Corn

1 tablespoon olive oil
½ jalapeno, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 package frozen corn, 12 ounces
½ cup half and half

In a sauté pan, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the jalapeno and garlic, sauté for 30 seconds. Add the corn, reduce the heat to medium and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes more. Add the half and half, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 8 to 10 minutes more. Serve.
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Monday, April 14, 2014

Lemon Brownies

Lemon Brownies
Miss F loves lemons. Like really loves lemons. She takes a lemon wedge in her water bottle that she takes to school. She always requests either lemon pancakes or lemon doughnuts for breakfast. So I always have a supply on hand in order to appease her. So when I saw this recipe for Lemon Brownies on Sing For Your Supper, I knew I had to try it. And since no mixer was involved, Miss F could pretty much make them herself. She loves using the lemon juicer! These brownies are delicious and quite the spin on the usual rich chocolate brownie. They also make a perfect lunchbox snack. So the recipe is a total win. And Miss F agrees.
Lemon Brownies

¾ cup flour
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 stick butter, softened
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
juice and zest of 1 lemon
½ cup powdered sugar
Juice 1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Mix in the softened butter. In another bowl whisk the eggs with the vanilla, lemon juice and zest. Add to the larger bowl and mix well. Pour into a greased 8X8 pan. Bake for 23-25 minutes.

Whisk together the powdered sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl. Remove the brownies from the oven and let cool, then pour the glaze over top.

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Friday, April 11, 2014

Garlic Butter Baked Salmon

Garlic Butter Baked Salmon
I love salmon, it is my favorite fish to cook. Miss F goes on and off salmon, for this meal she opted for fish sticks instead. Except when the salmon was plated, she decided she wanted some of that as well. And she finished all I gave her. This salmon is simple to prepare and has a ton of flavor. I also added a bit of the garlic butter to the roast asparagus I had with it.  I served it with a hybrid of Soy Roasted Potatoes and Lemony Potato Rounds.  This was adapted from a Taste of Home recipe.
Garlic Butter Baked Salmon

1 whole garlic bulbs
3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
2 tablespoons butter
4 salmon fillets
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon minced fresh parsley

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Remove the papery outer skin from garlic and cut the top off the garlic bulb. Brush with 1 teaspoon oil and wrap in heavy-duty foil. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until softened. Cool for 10 to 15 minutes. Squeeze softened garlic into a food processor; add butter and remaining oil. Cover and process until blended; set aside.

Place salmon in a greased baking pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle with the lemon juice. Spoon 1 tablespoon garlic butter over each fillet. Bake at 425 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley.
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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Roast Beef Tenderloin with Horseradish Cream

This meal started out as something completely different in my meal plan: bacon wrapped beef tenderloin, mashed potatoes and brussel sprouts. I decided beef tenderloin didn't need bacon, I had ample horseradish left over from my last dinner party, so this recipe from Bon Appetit looked like a winner. I wasn't in the mood for mashed potatoes and I wanted something that could bake alongside the beef, potato gratin cups were the obvious choice. And brussel sprouts were overpriced at the grocer and asparagus was on sale (and could be roasted alongside the beef and potatoes.) Miss F loved the beef, she proclaimed it, "so tender!" She ate a little asparagus and completely refused the potatoes. I hated gratin as a kid as well, so I never feel like I should force it on her.
Roast Beef Tenderloin with Horseradish Cream

½ cup sour cream
2 tablespoons drained prepared horseradish
Kosher salt

3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
2 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 3-pound center-cut beef tenderloin at room temperature
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Whisk sour cream in a medium bowl until thickened and soft peaks start to form, 1-2 minutes. Fold in horseradish; season with salt and pepper.

In a small bowl, stir together the garlic, thyme, salt and pepper, rub all over meat, pressing to adhere.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat oil and butter in a 12 inches cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Sear meat until brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a roasting pan. Roast meat until an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of beef registers 125° for medium-rare, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a carving board. Let rest for 15 minutes. Thinly slice tenderloin. Serve with Horseradish Cream.
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Monday, April 7, 2014

Tuna Tacos

Tuna Tacos
My friend Harmony brought the best hostess gift my last dinner party: fresh tuna. Her husband catches it and I am always so grateful when I get some. I have been wanting to make a spin on tuna tartare, taco style.  Frying the wonton wrappers into a taco shell was a little tricky, but so very worth it.  Marinated tuna, fresh avocado and quick pickled carrots and cucumber make for one amazing dinner.  Radishes might also be a tasty addition.  Miss F refused to have any, her loss.  She is a traditional taco girl, but I much prefer these to regular tacos.  I may have eaten three for dinner.
Tuna Tacos

1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar, divided
1 teaspoon Sriracha
1 teaspoon sesame oil
½ teaspoon sesame seeds
1 lime
½ pound tuna, diced
8 wonton wrappers
½ cucumber, sliced
1 carrot, peeled and shredded
1 avocado

Whisk together the soy sauce, one teaspoon of vinegar, Sriracha, sesame oil, sesame seeds and juice from half of the lime together in a small bowl. Toss the tuna in the sauce, refrigerate until ready to serve.

Fry the wonton wrappers while folded in half in oil over medium high heat until golden brown, about one minute. Drain on paper towels.

Toss the cucumber and carrot with the remaining teaspoon of vinegar, salt to taste. Mash the avocado with the juice from the remaining half of the lime.

Fill the wonton shells with the tuna mixture, then avocado and top with the cucumber-carrot slaw.
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Friday, April 4, 2014

The Best High Altitude Chocolate Chip Cookies

High Altitude Chocolate Chip Cookies
This post will probably apply to about 1% of my readers, but I want to document this recipe for myself since it has been a crazy amount of trial and error to get cookies to come out right at 8000 feet.  I remember baking cookies with my best friend in Vail and her explaining to me how she struggled to find a recipe that tasted right when baked at high altitudes.  After several batches of cookies, I finally found a winner. Miss F loves chocolate chip cookies and these are the perfect post skiing snack.  So much baking is intimidating at high altitudes, but I am happy I finally have a cookie recipe that is perfect.  This recipe is adapted from the Nestle Tollhouse chocolate chip cookie recipe.
The Best High Altitude Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 ½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 ¼ teaspoons salt
1 cup butter
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons water
1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate morsels

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Stir together the flour, baking soda and salt in a small bowl. In a large glass bowl, microwave the butter for 45 seconds. Add the sugar and brown sugar to the melted butter, beat with a mixer for about a minute, until creamy. Beat in the vanilla, eggs and water. Stir in the flour mixture until completely combined, then stir in the chocolate chips. Drop by heaping tablespoons onto cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until just browned on the edge. Cool on the baking sheet for five minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
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Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Easiest Ever Carbonara

Easiest Ever Carbonara
Tuesday is always the craziest dinner day at our house. Miss F has gymnastics and dance class on Tuesdays and is usually "starving" as she dramatically proclaims, when we get home. Carbonara is a go to meal on these nights because it comes together so quickly and she will eat a couple servings of it. This Carbonara is one of the quickest meals to get on the table, under 15 minutes usually, and I know Miss F will no longer be starving when she is finished. As long as she also has yogurt, a mess of blackberries and a cupcake for dessert.  I adapted this recipe from a recipe I pinned from Key Ingredient.
Easiest Ever Carbonara

2 egg yolks
⅓ cup cream
⅓ cup grated parmesan
1 tablespoon minced parsley
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
¼ pound bacon, cut into lardons
½ pound angel hair

Whisk the eggs, cream, Parmesan, parsley, salt and the red pepper together in a bowl. Fry the bacon until crisp, drain and set aside. Prepare the pasta per package directions. Drain the pasta and while still warm, pour the cream mixture into the pasta and stir over low heat for one to two minutes. Crumble the crisp bacon over the top & serve with additional Parmesan, fresh cracked pepper and minced parsley.
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