Monday, May 15, 2017

Insta pot Chicken

I'm trying out recipes in my new Insta-pot. This is a delicious chicken recipe!  I'm at about 4500 feet above sea level and am discovering that the recipes I try are over cooked.  I also use thin chicken breasts which may make a difference.  Times will be an approximation.

1 ½ pounds Chicken
⅛ teaspoons Black Pepper
⅛ teaspoons Salt
½ cups diced Onion
½ cups Soy Sauce
¼ cups Ketchup
2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
2 teaspoons minced Garlic
¼ tablespoons Red Pepper Flakes
1 cup Honey
Combine all ingredients in Insta-pot bowl. Lock cover into place and seal steam nozzle.
Cook on the chicken setting or manually set for 12 minutes.
Naturally release pressure for 5 minutes then quick release remaining pressure.
Remove chicken and dice.
Set Instant Pot setting to saute.
In a bowl, combine 2 Tbsp. cornstarch and 1 Tbsp. water.
Add cornstarch mixture and chicken to pot and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes until thickened.
Serve over rice. Delicious!




Thursday, February 23, 2017

Creamcheese Sugar Cookie Bars


Another of my sister in law's fabulous dessert recipes! I am posting them here so I don't lose the recipe! It is that good!!! 

1&1/2 Cups sugar
1 Cup butter, softened
8 oz. Cream cheese, softened
Combine above ingredients until smooth and creamy.

Add 1 egg, 1 tsp. vanilla and 1/2 tsp. almond extract. Beat 1 minute.

Add 2&1/2 Cups flour, 1 tsp. baking powder and 1/2 tsp. baking soda. Beat for 2 minutes.

Spread evenly in a jelly roll pan and Bake at 350* for 20 minutes or golden. Completely cool.




Cream Cheese Cookie Bar Frosting:

Combine 1/2 Cup soft butter with 4 oz. soft cream cheese until smooth. Add 3&1.2 Cups powdered sugar, 1 tsp. vanilla, and 2-3 Tbsp whole milk. Beat for about 4 minutes until fluffy. Add a drop of coloring if desired. Frost cooled Bars! These are a great pot-luck item!  

Swedish Meatballs

My own version of Swedish Meatballs. I took them to a potluck and they promptly disappeared!

Caramelize 1/2 of an onion in olive oil. In large bowl, mix 2 lb. ground beef, 1/2 lb. ground sausage, 1/2 Cup Panko bread crumbs, 2 eggs, 1/2 tsp. nutmeg, 1 tsp. cardamom, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, 1 tsp. kosher salt and some fresh 

ground pepper to taste. Roll this mixture into small balls and brown on all sides in 6 Tbsp. butter. Set aside. In a large saucepan, melt 6 Tbsp. butter and whisk in 1/3 Cup flour. To this add 4 Cups beef broth and 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce. Place the meatballs in sauce and cook on medium heat covered for about 8 minutes. Stir in 3/4 Cup sour cream and 1 tsp. Dijon mustard. Serve over rice or noodles!

Italian Chicken Breasts!

This chicken is so tender and moist! Pound 4-6 chicken breasts until about 1/2 inch thick. Coat them in flour and then dip them in an egg beaten with 1 tsp. water. thoroughly coat them in an Italian bread crumb or add 1 tsp. of dried oregano to plain bread crumbs. Fry them in hot oil for 8 minutes on one side. Flip them and fry them for another 2 minutes. Remove and place a piece of mozzarella on top of them. Warm 1 can tomato sauce up with 1/4 tsp. garlic powder and 1/4 tsp dried basil leaves in it. Spread some of the tomato sauce on the cheese and some freshly grated Parmesan. Serve immediately. 

Easy Artisan Bread

 Most delicious Artisan Bread is as easy as 123! 
In a medium sized bowl combine 3 Cups flour, 1/2 tsp. dry yeast, and 2 tsp. kosher salt. Add 1 & 1/2 Cups warm water and stir until just combined.
Cover with plastic wrap and leave on counter overnight. Next morning, spread some flour or cornmeal on the bottom of an enamel coated round dutch oven pan with a lid.
Bake at 425* for 30 minutes covered and then 7 more minutes uncovered. 
Perfect crusty little loaf of perfection!! 


Grandma's Crepe recipe!


My All Time Favorite Crepe Recipe!

Combine 2 Cups flour, 3 tsp. salt with 6 eggs, 3 Cups milk, and 2 Tbsp. cooking oil.
It is a bit tricky to make sure the flour isn't lumpy so feel free to break out the hand mixer or use any little tricks you have up your sleeve. 
I have a couple of crepe makers so I pour the batter into a deep pie plate and then dip the crepe maker in, let it cook for a minute and voila! 
Sometimes I fill them with hamburger/sausage and spinach with spaghetti sauce and cheese and bake them. Other times I have filled them with a white sauce and chicken and mushrooms. I also fill them with eggs and breakfast foods or fruit and pie filling. The possibilities are endless! 
Oh, P.S. If you don't have a crepe maker, simply spread them out in a frying pan very thin and cook them that way.

Chicken Artichoke Foil Packets

Foil Chicken Packets
 I made these in the middle of winter in my oven, but am excited to try them over a campfire this Summer! They were tasty! I got this recipe from Kraft foods. That would be why there are recommendations for particular brands. 
3 cups instant white rice, uncooked
3 cups warm water
6 small boneless skinless chicken breasts, 1/2 inch thick
1 can (13-3/4 oz.) artichoke hearts, drained, quartered
several grape tomatoes sliced in half
1/2 cup KRAFT Zesty Italian Dressing
1/4 cup CLASSICO Traditional Basil Pesto Sauce and Spread
Heat oven to 400°F.
Mix rice and water; spoon onto centers of 6 large sheets heavy-duty foil. Top with chicken, artichokes and tomatoes; drizzle with combined dressing and pesto.
Bring up foil sides. Double fold top and both ends to seal each packet, leaving room for heat circulation inside. Place in 15x10x1-inch pan.
Bake 30 to 35 min. or until chicken is done (165°F). Remove packets from oven; let stand 5 min. Cut slits in foil to release steam before opening.

Thanksgiving Place cards and favors


I love making a little something to help decorate my table at Thanksgiving time. This year I found a tee-pee printable and simply printed it out on card stock, folded and glued it to a base so I could put candy inside. I also found a witch shoe pattern, cut the toe off and folded and glued it together so it resembled a pilgrim shoe. I glued a small black clothespin on the top which held the chalkboard type name tags. 


Fork tender roast!


This is a delicious pot roast every time! I love throwing this in the crock pot, setting it on low and returning 6-8 hours later to find this melt in your mouth meat!

3-5 lb. roast seared in olive oil on all sides (typically 10 minutes per side). Saute a couple of onions as well and place the roast and onions in a crock pot. Combine 4 cups chicken broth, 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard, 2 tsp. smoked paprika, some fresh thyme or dried, 2 Tbsp pure maple syrup, 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar and pour over roast. You may also add 1/4 cup cooking wine as desired. If the liquid doesn't cover the meat, add more chicken or beef broth until it's covered. Cook on low for about 6 hours until fork tender. 


Smoked Turkey Extraordinaire!

This is my go to recipe for turkey brine which is a must have in my opinion! I have even used it on a frozen turkey and it is still amazingly delicious! 
My husband has a Traeger smoker. We tried a large turkey on it and it ended up being a tad dry (probably due to user downfalls). However, when we tried a small turkey, it was the best!
If you don't have access to a smoker, this is still my favorite brine for making your turkey mouthwateringly tender!


1 bunch fresh thyme
5 bay leaves
3/4 kosher salt
1 tsp. peppercorns
1 & 1/2 cups sugar
1 bunch fresh rosemary
a few orange peels if desired
3 quarts hot water
3 quarts ice

Dissolve everything in hot water and then add ice. Immerse turkey and soak in fridge 8-12 hours. Cook as usual. I double this for a huge bird. I have a bucket I use and if it's 40* outside or cooler, I simply stick it outside overnight.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Cranberry Danish

Christmas Morning Cranberry Danish


This is a recipe I've already posted but I made some changes and I had to post it again! It is delightful!


Christmas traditions are so fun and I'm thinking this will definitely become my Christmas morning breakfast tradition from here on.


Danish
Dissolve 1 T. yeast in 1/3 C. warm water (115*)
Heat 1/2 C. sour cream to 110* and add to yeast. Add 1/4 C. melted butter, 1/4 C. sugar, 1 t. salt, and one egg. Combine. Add 2 & 1/2 C. flour and combine. Knead about 20 times in mixer. Transfer to a greased bowl and cover with a towel. Let rise till doubled (about an hour and a half).
Place dough on a floured surface and divide in half. Roll each half into two 12X8 rectangles. 


While the dough is rising, combine 1 softened pkg. of cream cheese, 1 egg, 1/4 C. sugar, 1/4 C. powdered sugar, 1 t. vanilla, and 1/8 t. salt.
Spread this filling on the two halves keeping it about an inch from the edge. Spread 1/4 C. homemade cranberry sauce (see recipe on this blog for the best cranberry sauce ever!) on half of each half. 


Roll each half up like a jelly roll starting with the longer side and pinch the edges tight. Place on baking pan and cut slices into it like you would french bread. Bake at 375* for 20 minutes.
After it is cool, drizzle with 1 & 1/4 C. powdered sugar, 1 t. vanilla, and 2 T. milk combined.



Banana Cream Pie



This is my kids favorite pie! It isn't very difficult to make a bunch of pie crusts from a great recipe I received in the 80's when I was at a bridal shower. I will post the pie crust recipe shortly, but all you have to do is make a bunch of your favorite crusts and freeze them to pull out and use when you are needing to make a quick and tasty pie.
I bake my crust poked full of fork holes at 350* for about 13 minutes and set it aside to cool.
I usually make the cream part the day ahead and simply refrigerate it until the day I need the pie. 
Place 3c. whole milk in a microwave safe bowl and scald it (I do it on full power for 2 minutes).
Combine 3/4 c. sugar and 1/3 c. flour in a saucepan. Add 1/4 tsp. salt.
Stir in the scalded milk over medium heat stirring constantly.
When it just begins to show signs of boiling place a lid on the pan and time it for 2 minutes stirring occasionally. 
Take the mixture off heat. In a small bowl have 3 egg yolks beaten. Add a small amount of the cream mixture to the yolks and then add a bit more. Stir the yolks back into the main mixture and combine well. Cook for 1 minute more. Remove from heat and add 1 tsp. vanilla and 2 Tbsp. butter.
I keep this mixture close by and stir it every few minutes to keep a crust from forming on the top. Refrigerate until you are ready to use it. Slice 3 bananas in the cooked pie crust and pour the cream mixture over them.
Cheers!


Apple Pie!

Best EVER Apple Pie! (easy too):

Here is a combination of recipes which create my favorite apple pie. I tried several recipes and though they were good, there was always that one pesky thing that I didn't completely love about each one. I have experimented and created this recipe which is simply fabulous!

In a medium saucepan, melt 1 cube butter, 1/4 c. heavy cream, 1/2 c. sugar, 1/2 c. brown sugar combined with 3 Tbsp. flour and 1/4 tsp. cinnamon.
Cook until the sugar dissolves.
Peel and slice 6-8 apples (I like granny smith)
Pour the cooked mixture over the apples and toss.
In a food processor combine:
7 Tbsp. butter
3/4 c. flour
1/2 c. brown sugar
heaping 1/4 c. pecans or walnuts
and a dash of salt
Place an unbaked pie crust in a pie plate and add apples. Pour the crumb mixture over the top and bake at 425* for 15 minutes the lower the oven temp to 350* and continue baking for 40 minutes.
I usually line a foil lined cookie sheet to place under the pie as it will drip while baking.










Friday, December 23, 2016

Andes Mint Cookies

These cookies are delicious! 
If you love Andes Mints, and have tried the recipe on the package, you know it isn't the best.
This recipe was given to me by my sister and I modified it a bit and tried it with Andes mints today.
Chocolate and mint were a match made in heaven!
Andes Mint Cookies:
Cream 1 lb. of softened butter, 2 c. brown sugar, 1 & 1/2 c. granulated sugar.
Add 3 eggs, 3 tsp. vanilla and a scant 1/2 can of sweetened condensed milk.
Add 7 & 1/4 c. flour, 1 & 1/2 tsp. baking soda, and 1/2 c. chocolate powdered milk.
Toss in a bag of Andes mint pieces just till combined.
Bake at 350* for 14 minutes...that is for large ice-cream scoop size cookies.
*Update* These are really good, but don't stay very soft for more than two days. I am extremely picky about my cookies and prefer recipes that last for a week. However, when I find one that doesn't stay very moist, I simply make them and share them so they get consumed in the allotted time frame. Happy Baking!

Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Fresh Cranberry Sauce:

I was a huge fan of that nasty canned cranberry sauce when I was a little girl. Hopefully needless to say, I am no longer. I haven't tried many homemade cranberry sauces I like. My Grandmother made one that I loved but trying to extract a recipe from her is liking prying a secret from a stoic spy and I didn't feel like applying any torture techniques.
I found several recipes online and decided to concoct one of my own as follows;
Preheat oven to 350*
Place 3 cups of fresh cranberries in a 9X13 pan.
Grate the peel of one orange over the berries
Add 3 whole allspice berries, 1 cinnamon stick, a pinch of cloves, and a bit of ginger
Dice one apple in very small pieces over the cranberries
Pour 1c. of Gingerale and 1c. of orange juice over everything
Add 1 tsp. or Tbsp. of flavoring of your choice or 1Tbsp. of cognac
Sprinkle 1/2c. sugar and 1/2c. brown sugar over the cranberries
Bake for 1 hour.
Remove from oven and play I spy to find the hidden allspice berries and the cinnamon stick and remove them.
It will set up as it cools. Refrigerate after you eat a warm spoonful of heaven. It keeps for a week or can be frozen.