Monday, August 29, 2011

Pefectly Sinful Pies!

Well, my little sister invited us over for dinner tonight and I didn't want to go empty handed. I ended up making a few pies because we're a little short on groceries in the house and this was all I could throw together. Mind you, I made these up on the fly, but they got great reviews from the family. :)

Both pies use the same type of graham crackercrust:

1 c graham crackers
1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup brown sugar (white sugar can be used, but the crust is more crumbly)

Mix together, press into pie pan bake at 350 for 8-10 min depending on how thick you pressed it in the pan

Strawberry Citrus Pie

1 Bag (16 oz) frozen strawberries
1 small box orange Jell-O
1 cup hot water
1 cup cold water
2 TBS cornstarch
2 TBS lemon juice
red food coloring
1 graham cracker crust
(can top with whipped cream, but it isn't 100% necessary)

In a medium saucepan combine jell-0 and cornstarch then stir in the water until both are dissolved and there are no lumps (whisks are a beautiful thing!) turn on the heat and add the strawberries, food coloring, and lemon juice. Cook until at a rolling boil and thickened. Pour into pie crust. Refrigerate for 2-4 hours before serving.

(Got rave reviews!)

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cream Pie (my triumph of the day, if I do say so myself)

1 graham cracker crust
chocolate ice cream syrup (optional)
2 small boxes vanilla pudding
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 and 3/4 cup + 1 and 3/4 c milk
1 and 1/2 TBS cocoa powder
(also can be finished with whipped cream, but this too is optional)

drizzle chocolate syrup over graham cracker crust (no need to cover the whole thing-and this is optional- I did it, but I would imagine it would taste okay without it.) Set aside.

Mix 1 box of pudding with one of the portions of milk until pudding is mostly dissolved. Mix in the peanut butter. Once combine, pour over the pie crust and spread.

Mix the last box of pudding with the last portion of milk until pudding is mostly dissolved. Mix in the cocoa powder. Once combined, pour over the peanut butter layer and spread.

(Optional) Drizzle some more chocolate syrup artistically over the top of the pie. Refrigerate for atleast 30 minutes before serving (so its chilled and set up)

(this one tastes like a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup...I kid you not...its sinfully delicious!)

Bon Appetite Darlings!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Dutch Oven Potatoes in the Crock Pot??!?!?!

Okay- I know what you're thinking...

There is NOTHING like Dutch Oven Potatoes...and NOTHING can ever compare to the awesome smoky flavor.

Well, I would say that I agree with you- but these potatoes come close. The best part of this recipe is, once you get it all set up in the crock pot you can forget it for the next 4-5 hours!

You will need:

6 medium red potatoes sliced thin-ish (you can use russet, but I think reds cook better in the crock pot. They get less mushy)

1/4 of a red onion minced

1/2 package of bacon

1/4 cup butter cut into thirds

salt and pepper to taste

Here's how you do it:

Pour 1 and a 1/2 cups water into the bottom of the crock pot. Layer 1/3 of the sliced potatoes in the water, sprinkle with salt and pepper, put 1/3 of the onions on top and then 1/3 of the bacon. Then cut one of the thirds of the butter into small cubes and sprinkle those over that layer- repeat 3 times.

Set your crock pot on high and try to be aware of it for the first hour or so- if it starts to smell like its burning add a little more water and turn it down to low (every crock pot cooks differently. Mine just happens to cook these potatoes very well on high for 4 hours) If your crock pot is anything like mine, you can leave it alone for 4 hours on high and it will be fine.


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Grilled Chicken Primavera Pesto Pasta

It's summer, and we've been grilling A LOT. Its been tough to come up with recipes to keep it from getting boring. I think that tonight, I may have come up with a winner! This recipe can be altered to work for my vegetarian friends without the chicken as well, just brush the marinade over the top of the veggies as you grill them on skewers (for veggies alone it should only take 15-20 minutes to get them nice and juicy and grilled) but for all my carnivore friends, this is a recipe not to be missed.

Here is what you need to do:

cut 3 chicken breast cutlets into cubes that are about an inch in all directions and marinate them for 30 minutes to overnight in the following marinade:

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 TBS cooking oil (olive, canola...whatever ya got!)
1 Clove garlic minced
2 TBS brown sugar
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder

When you're ready to cook make sure you've sliced the following:

1-2 yellow squash
1-2 zuchinni
1 onion
(make sure you slice them big enough that the skewer can go through the skin as opposed to just the "meat" of the fruit)

Layer your kebabs onto skewers meat first

Grill until done (20-3o minutes- until there is no pink left in the chicken. For best results have the grill heated to about 350 - 400 degrees before you start grilling)

While that is grilling:
boil enough pasta as desired for your family (or yourself) to use as a bed for the veggies and meat.
Add your favorite pesto to the cooked pasta and toss

Put the meat and veggies on top and sprinkle with a little parmesan if desired...and voila! Deliciousness for your mouth to do a happy dance about!

(Pictures to come!)

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Primavera Pizza

So Jeff and I were at the grocery store tonight shopping, both starving (bad idea...usually...) and we both were trying to decide what sounded good. All day I'd been craving sauteed zuchinni and yellow squash with onions but had no idea what to put it with. Bacon was on sale, and Jeff mentioned that perhaps he would just have breakfast for dinner because bacon sounded good. My brain immediately went to in the world do you combine these two beautiful foods? I then remembered the Boboli pizza crust sitting at home in our pantry...then...sheer genius (and deliciousness) was born. Ladies and gentleman, I give you the Primavera Pizza...

(Okay, since its with bacon, maybe it would be called traditionally more of a Carbonara, but you can't fault me for the fusion...)

Here's what you need!

1/2 package of bacon cut into pieces: Fry the bacon and put to the side in a bowl. Add about 1-2 TBS of butter to the pan then add:

1 small yellow squash
1 small zuchinni
1/2 of a medium onion
All sliced thin. Sautee until almost done.

On a prepared pizza crust (you could use homemade, we just happened to have a Boboli) spread Alfredo Sauce to your liking (I normally make my own alfredo sauce, but we were hungry. To save time we bought a bottled sauce. If you buy a bottled sauce, I recommend Newman's Own...its the most decent bottled sauce I've tasted.)

Spread the bacon over the sauce then put some shredded mozzarella (or colby jack, or whatever...) cheese thinly over the top. Spread your sauteed veggies over that and cover those with a thin(ish) layer of cheese. Sprinkle Parmesan over the top and place in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes.

Voila...and you're welcome!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Vegetarian Lasagna Roll Ups

I know its been a while since I've posted here. Mostly this is due to the fact that I hadn't been up to cooking anything too fabulous and didn't feel the need to share. I'm almost 4 weeks into the second trimester of my pregnancy, and I'm starting to feel more like me. Tonight, I decided I would scour the net and tweak a recipe for the first time in a while.

I have had a really hard time eating meat during my pregnancy. My midwife said that most women that have this food aversion usually experience it during the whole pregnancy. I force myself, but I'm always looking for yummy recipes to get me out of my cucumbers and vinegar slump.

This recipe seemed promising and Jeff actually approved it! So, I tweaked it to suit what I knew would make it taste better (atleast according to me.) You can find the original recipe here.

Don't let the word Vegetarian make you nervous. You can add meat the sauce still if you think you're missing something, but I didn't see the need to add it if the original recipe was okay without it. Plus, it will be plenty cheesy!

You will need:

1 jar/recipe of pesto (I used a packet of Knorr's Pesto Sauce Mix. It actually reconstitutes to a decent tasting pesto, and this is coming from someone who prefers to make her own pesto in a food processor or blender!)

1/2 -1 c Parmesan cheese (depends on how cheesy you want it. I used about half a cup because it also adds a salty flavor and I didn't want it to be too salty)

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 large container of Ricotta Cheese

2 eggs

Mix these ingredients together in a large bowl and set aside

Boil 1 package of lasagna noodles. Drain and cool before handling.

Spread 1/4 cup of cheese mixture on each noodle and roll it like a jelly roll. Place in a greased 9x13 baking pan.

Cover with 1 jar spaghetti sauce of your choice (Jeff and I are in LOVE with the Smooth Prego Veggie Smart! Honestly, you should try it! Its almost as good as homemade sauce. Its just SO TASTY!)

Cover the sauce with shredded Mozzarella (or cheddar if that's your preference)

Bake covered for 30 minutes in a 400 degree oven then take the cover off and bake for another 10 minutes until the cheese is bubbling and browning a bit.

Allow to sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.

This is a delish dish! Bon Appetit darlings!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Better than a Restaurant Ribs

With spring started to peek through the snow clouds, I decided to go ahead and buy some beef ribs that were on sale at the grocery store. Lately, all food tends to make me sick, so if I'm going to be sick, I've decided to be sick for good reason.

I then commenced my search for the best way to prepare them. As usual, I liked some aspects about some recipes and not so much about I fused a few recipes together and came up with something pretty spectacular....

Are you ready for ribs that will make you never want to eat them at a restaurant again? I thought so...'s how you do it:

Let the ribs sit out in the fridge and completely defrost (if you put them in the freezer like I did when I got home from the store) this usually is an overnight process.

In the morning rub the ribs down with this dry rub mixture:

4 tsp. paprika
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp curry powder ( I use red curry powder)
2 tsp black pepper
4 tsp white sugar
2 tsp brown sugar
2 tsp garlic salt

Be sure to coat them well, and really try to rub the spices into the meat. Wrap the ribs in aluminum foil (shiny side in) and let them sit in the fridge for 4 hours to "marinate" in the spices.

preheat the oven to 275, then stick the tin foiled ribs inside for 2-4 hours

baste the ribs with barbecue sauce of your choice and grill for 5-7 minutes on both sides.

Yes, they are a lot of work...but they are so melt in your mouth delicious and worth it. Obviously you're going to have rub spices left over...KEEP THEM! You can store them in a tupperware for 6 months before they begin to lose their potency, and to be honest, if you grill as much as I like to when its warm outside, you will likely use it all up. I even have toyed with the idea of using the spice to season some roasted potatoes (dip a pinkie in your spice and taste it, and you will see why I think it would be scrumdiddlyumptious!)

Bon Appetite darlings!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Best Ranch EVER


Jeff isn't a big fan of ranch dressing. I happen to love it for dipping chicken nuggets, french fries, and veggies (what I put on my salad depends on my mood, I'm a lover of all dressings, unlike most Idaho/Utah born and raised people). Since Jeff doesn't care much for ranch, I hate to buy it. I feel guilty since I'm the only one that eats it...hence the beginning of my quest for the perfect homemade ranch dressing recipe.

Well darlings...I FOUND IT! I am currently chomping down on some sweet bell peppers with it right now! Delicious and super easy...and chances are you will have all the ingredients in your spice cabinet, which means its a really cheap way to get your ranch fix.

I have to say...after tasting this, I may not go back to the pre bottled stuff ever again.

Bon Appetite!

You will need:

2 cups mayo or miracle whip *(I used miracle whip because its what we had in the fridge. It does have a slightly sweeter taste than regular ranch, but other than that, I can't tell the difference)

1 cup milk

3TBS vinegar

1-2 tsp seasoned salt (taste it after you've put 1 tsp in, if you need more add it. Remember, you can always add spices but you can't take them away.)

1 tsp pepper

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp dill

2 TBS parsley flakes

Put all the ingredients into whatever you plan on mixing/shaking it in and shake until smooth. The best part is, you can eat it right away...the flavors will infuse more as time goes on but it tastes pretty awesome fresh too.