Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Rice Crispy Treat

While strolling down the cereal aisle in the grocery store I just happen to notice the Rice Crispy cereal on sale.  I already know that if I was to buy this cereal it'll be the last one to get eaten or I would have to force the kids to eat it.  Its not sweet enough one child would say and the other will say it just has no taste.  In order to keep everyone happy I decided to buy it anyway and make rice crispy treats.  I love peanut butter so I decided to add it into the treats.  At this point i'm really happy.

Recipe as follows:

-4 tablespoons of no salt butter
-6 cups mini-marshmallows
-1 cup of creamy peanut butter
-1 teaspoon vanilla extract
-6 cups rice crispy treats
-1/2 cup chocolate chip morsals

-In a large sauce pan melt butter on low. 
-Fold in marshmallows until completely melted.
-Remove pan from heat and fold in peanut butter until well combined.
-Add in vanilla extract.
-Fold in rice crispy treats following up with chocolate chip morsels until coated.

-Coat 13x9 pan with butter.
-Add rice crispy treats to pan and let cool.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Mandarin Orange Coconut Bundt Cake #Bundtamonth

During the month of January for #Bundtamonth the ingredient to be included in the cake is Citrus. After narrowing down my choices of citrus I chose Mandarin Orange.  Mandarin oranges are found in the canned fruit aisle in the grocery store cut up in whole segments.  These segments may be small but they are very juicy.  Normally when I use mandarin oranges I put it in a Hawaiian Salad.  This in which gave me an idea of adding coconut to the topping of the cake.

Cake Recipe:

-2 sticks of unsalted butter at room temperature
-2 cups of sugar
-3 cusps of cake flour
-4 eggs
-1 cup of milk
-3 tablespoons of baking powder
-1/2 teaspoon of salt
-1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
-2 tablespoons of mandarin orange juice
-zest of 1/2 orange

Preheat oven 350 degrees. Spray pan with non sticking spray.

-Cream butter in a large bowl and slowly add the sugar until fluffy.
-In a large bowl sift cake flour, salt, and baking powder.
-Add eggs one at a time to the butter and sugar mix.
-Alternating add flour and milk to the wet mix starting with flour and ending with flour.
-Add in the vanilla extract, mandarin orange juice and zest.
-Pour cake mix in the bundt pan and bake for 40 minutes until tooth pick comes out clean.

Mandarin Orange Glaze Recipe:

-1 cup sifted confectioners sugar
-1/4 stick of melted butter
-1 tablespoon heavy cream
-2 tablespoons mandarin orange juice

-Sweetened shredded coconut

-Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and beat until smooth and creamy.
-Drizzle over cooled cake and added sweetened shredded coconuts on top of glaze.
-Garnish cake with oranges.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Triple Berry Compote

As I was churning my vanilla bean ice cream today...I decided to pull my frozen berries out of the freezer and make some compote.

-1 teaspoon of cornstarch
-Juice from one orange
-1 cup of frozen berries (your favorite)
-1/4 cup of sugar
-1 teaspoon of almond extract
-Zest of 1/2 of orange

Serving size: 2

In a medium sauce pan dissolve the cornstarch in the juice from the orange.  Add in the frozen berries, sugar, almond extract, and orange zest over medium heat. Cook mixture until the sauce thickens usually about three to four minutes.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Brandy Apple Pork Chops Stuffed with Italian Sausage

I went to my local butcher and asked for two thick cut pork chops. I brought these chops home and decided that I wanted to do something different so I decided to stuff it.  I have seen this done on several Food Network and Cooking Channel recipes done with different types of meat.  The thing with cooking is that I as in anyone else that loves to cook can take the concept or title of a recipe and turn it to your own.  With these thick cut chops I decided to stuff it with Italian sausages. 

-2 thick cut pork chops
-2 Italian sausages or Italian ground sausage (chopped)
-1/2 shallot
-1 green apple (skin off) cubed
-1/4 cup brown sugar
-1/4 cup brandy
-1/4 cup heavy cream
-2 tablespoons butter
-salt and pepper to taste
-olive oil

Preheat oven 350 degrees
-Take chops and cut down the side about 3/4 way down and across.
-Salt and pepper to taste both sides and set aside.
-In a saute pan chopped and cook sausage until done.
-Place sausage inside chops and close with about three tooth pics (picture below)
-Using the same pan that the sausage was cooked in add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and pan sear the chops on both side for about six minutes on both sides.
-Finish chops in the oven till done.
-Remove chops from the pan and set aside.
-In the saute pan on simmer add two tablespoons of butter and 1/2 of a shallot and saute until softened.  Toss in apples, brown sugar, heavy cream and whisk until sugar has dissolved and apples are tender.
-Add chops back into pan and baste both sides and inside. At this point the sauce should have reduced.

 (toothpick placement)

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Bread Pudding

Bread Pudding is a nice sweet and savory dessert.  Of course since I have two people in my family that likes everything plain and my son and I feel as if anything goes that I had to make half plain and the other half with apples and walnuts. I topped it off with a molasses rum sauce.

Bread Pudding starts off with stale bread or what they may call day old bread.  Any type of white bread can be used for example french, italian or brioche.  Then one can go another route and use honey wheat bread or cinnamon raisin bread.  It all depends on the type of bread pudding one would like to make and the ingredients you would plan to put in it.

For this recipe I went to Panera Bread and bought a loaf of white bread and had them cut it into Texas toast size slices.  Therefore; it would be easier for me to cube the bread into pieces.

-4 cups of milk
-1 cup of heavy cream
-5 large eggs
-1 1/2 cups packed dark brown sugar
-3 teaspoons vanilla extract
-1 teaspoon cinnamon
-1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-enough butter to coat a 13x9 pan

In a large bowl add the cubed bread.
In a medium bowl beat the eggs and whip in the rest of the ingredients.
After the egg mixture is combined pour it over the cubed bread and fold it over until covered.  Leave the bread in a bowl until the egg mixture is soaked into the bread. (No Longer than an hour). 
Preheat the oven and bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes until set.

Let stand for 10 minutes and then serve. 

Friday, January 4, 2013

Maple Flavored Whip Cream

My aunt made some of her infamous sweet potato pies (recipe passed down from my gma). Whenever she makes these pies she always make at least 10 and freezes it.  My daughter asked for a pie and we brought one home.  After the pie defrosted we popped it in the oven and OMG... I was speechless. To top it off...I made some maple flavored whip cream as a topping with a hint of nutmeg.

 After I learned how to make whip cream I have never bought any again.  It is so simple and easy.  Three ingredients is all you need.  Heavy Whipping Cream, Powder Sugar and whatever flavoring extract you would like to use. Add the ingredients to a mixing bowl.  Whip the mixture on high until peaks start to form and you are done.

Maple Flavored Whip Cream
-1 cup heavy whipping cream
-2 tablespoon powder sugar
-1 teaspoon of flavor extract (your choice of flavoring)

***OPTIONAL..Add Liqueur instead of the extract for an adult experience***

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Stuffed Shells

For my New Years Day I wanted to incorporate something green into my dinner. I decided to make stuffed shells topped with meat sauce and spinach. I utilized Manicotti pasta and stuffed it with the same Ricotta mixture that I use in my Lasagna recipe.  Stuffing pasta is never an easy task.  So I decided to use a piping bag and a cake decorating tip. 


Layer the bottom of the pan with a layer of meat sauce and spinach. 

Line the stuffed shells along the pan.

Add another layer of meat sauce with spinach.
Add mozzarella and parmesan cheese on top of the meat sauce.

Drizzle olive oil on top.

Place in a pre-heated oven on 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Let stand for 15 minutes to set and then serve.  Serve with a side of italian bread and dinner is complete.

 I have misplaced my camera sometime in between Christmas and New these pictures taken with my IPOD don't give this meal the proper essence on how it should look.  I can guarantee it tastes delicious.

Happy New Year...Waffles Two Ways

Breakfast started off late this morning...well lets just say it was afternoon.  I decided to make Bacon Stuffed Waffles as well as a Bananas Foster Topping Waffle. My kids are completely different.  One child don't like cooked fruit and the other will try just about anything. I started off by using my basic Buttermilk Waffle recipe and then just added the ingredients. 

To make the bacon waffles I cooked the bacon in the oven first until my desired crispiness and ruffly chopped it up and placed it in the center of the waffle iron.  Then I added the waffle batter on top and cooked it until the light turned off on the iron. 

For the Bananas Foster Topping Waffles in a medium sized skillet I added 1/3 cup of dark brown sugar and two tablspoons of butter in the skillet until the sugar was melted.  I took the juice of half a lemon and squeezed it in the mixture then I tossed in one sliced banana.  I then added one teaspoon of vanilla extract and one tablespoon of brandy(optional). Cooked the bananas foster for an additional minute and topped it off on the waffles.  It's like having dessert for breakfast.