Monday, December 21, 2009

Pizza Dough in the breadmaker

I have a Cuisinart convection breadmaker, and this is the recipe I use from my recipe book.
To make a 2 lb (large) pizza, follow this recipe:

Water, 80-90 degrees- 1 1/3 cups
1 tsp honey or sugar
2 tsp sea or kosher salt
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 1/4 cups bread flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
2 1/4 tsp active dry, instant or bread machine yeast

Place ingredients in breadmaker in order listed, fitted w/ kneading paddle. Select dough/pizza dough. Select dough size (2 lbs). Press START to mix, knead and rise. When dough cycle is completed, deflate dough and use to make your own pizza.

I roll it out on a floured counter and place it onto a round pizza pan that is brushed w/ olive oil. I bake at 375 for 18-20 mins, but eyeball it since all ovens differ. You can tell by the cheese and the texture of the crust if its done or not.

Pic to come soon!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Homemade Soft Pretzels

These are really good, and HUGE! Be sure to use a greased cookie sheet or they stick really bad!

Homemade Soft Pretzels:

3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon white sugar
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 1/3 cups water
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons baking soda
3 cups water
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon coarse sea salt, or to taste


In a large bowl, stir together 1 cup of flour, yeast, sugar, 2 tablespoons of butter, and 1 1/3 cup water. Let this mixture stand until bubble begin to form, about 15 minutes. Stir in the salt and gradually stir in the remaining flour until dough can be picked up and kneaded on the counter. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes, adding more flour if needed.

Divide the dough into 6 pieces and let them rest for a few minutes. Roll out one piece at a time into a rope about 15 inches long. Loop and twist into that cool pretzel shape. Set on a baking sheet while you roll out the remaining portions.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Bring the remaining 3 cups of water to a boil and add the baking soda. Remove from the heat. Dip pretzels into the water bath for about 45 seconds, flipping over about halfway through. Place the soaked pretzels on a greased baking sheet. Brush them with melted butter and sprinkle with coarse salt.
Bake in the preheated oven until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes

Crock Pot Italian beef sandwiches

I made these for my housewarming party and everyone loved it!

4-5 lb beef chuck roast
0.7 oz pkg dry italian salad dressing mix (not the zesty kind)
8-10 pepperocinis
2 cups hot water
16-20 buns

Combine all ingredients in slow cooker. heat on low for 10 hrs. Shred beef, serve on buns. Serves 16-20.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Baked Bananas

Looking to use up those nasty blackend bananas? Here is a super easy recipe!

1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup water
2 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 pinch salt (optional)
7 ripe bananas

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
In a saucepan over medium-high heat, mix together cornstarch and sugar. Gradually stir in water. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, stir in butter, lemon juice, nutmeg, and salt.
Peel bananas, and place in a casserole dish. Drizzle sauce over bananas.
Bake in a preheated oven for 12 minutes. Serve warm.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Two Week Meal Plan 10-18 thru 10-31

This is a bit late, but here is our meal plan. I will post recipes soon!

Sunday 10/18: Hearty Meatball soup w/ freshly baked bread
Monday 10/19: cola roast in the crockpot w/ mashed potatoes and corn on the side.
Tuesday 10/20: I 'splurged' and made 2 frozen pizzas from Woodman's grocery store. They were actually pretty good for cheap pizzas!
Wednesday 10/21: Chicken bake and fruit cocktail. Maybe some yogurt for the kids
Thursday 10/22: leftover meatball soup and more fresh baked bread
Friday 10/23: sloppy joe under a bun and curly fries
Saturday 10/24: we will be at a birthday party
Sunday 10/25: tater tot casserole and a veggie
Monday 10/26: country chicken
Tuesday 10/27: leftover smorgasborg
Wednesday 10/28: Taco Soup and cornbread
Thursday 10/29: not sure yet!
Friday 10/30: turkey taco meatloaf

Monday, October 5, 2009

Happy Birthday to my son!

Yesterday was my son's 10th birthday!
Rather than go to Walmart and buy cupcakes, I made my own.
I colored some homemade buttercream icing blue and piped it on
using a Wilton tip 22 and added blue sprinkles. His fave color is
black but I wasnt making black cupcakes. LOL

My meal plan for the next 2 weeks

Organizing Blog

So, below this post, all the posts in October are the ones that I've made the past 2 weeks. Any gaps were filled in by leftovers or "clear the freezer" night. lol

Here is my meal plan for the next 2 weeks!

Lasagna and garlic bread
greek chicken w/ penne pasta (recipe is in this blog)
hearty meatball soup
slow cooker enchiladas
beef and cheese quesadillas
mini meatloaves
taco soup
homemade pizza
leftovers from our party 10/10

Recipes to follow!

Potato and Corn Chowder

Super easy crock pot meal!! Now that the weather is getting chilly, fill your tummies with something thick and hearty! This would be great paired up w/ a good crusty bread!

16 oz bag frozen hashbrowns (I used the shredded, but the squared would work too)
15 oz can corn
15 oz can creamed corn
1/2 cup onion, chopped (I used my dried minced, just about a palm full. I typically just eyeball and don't measure)
12 oz can evaporated milk
1 lb smoked sausage ring (like Ecrich), sliced)
1/2 tsp worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together; place in a slow cooker. Heat on low for 7 hours. Serves about 6.

Scalloped Sausage & Potatoes

4 cups potatoes, peeled, sliced and divided
1/4 cup all purpose flour, divided
1/4 tsp salt, divided
1 lb ground pork sausage or italian sausage, browned and divided
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1 1/2 cups milk

Place half the potatoes in a 2 qt casserole dish; sprinkle w/ half the flour. Top with 1/2 the salt, half the sausage and 1/2 the cheese; repeat with remaining potatoes, flour, salt, sausage and cheese. Pour milk over the top; cover. Bake at 350 for 50 mins to one hour; uncover. Bake for another 8-10 min or until potatoes are tender. Serves 4-6.

Tortilla Beef Bake

1 1/2 lbs ground beef
1 can cream of chicken soup, undiluted
2 1/2 cups crushed tortilla chips, divided
1 16 oz jar salsa
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

In a skillet, cook beef until no longer pink, drain, stir in soup. Sprinkle 1 1/2 cups tortilla chips into a shallow 2 1/2 qt baking dish. Top with beef mixture, salsa and cheese. Bake uncovered at 350 for 25-30 mins or until bubbly. Sprinkle with the remaining chips. Bake 3 mins longer or until chips are lightly toasted.

I serve this up with spanish rice!

3 step stroganoff

This is a great wholesome meal that you can make in a flash!

1 1/2 lbs boneless round steak, thinly sliced
1 tbsp veg. oil
1 can cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
1/2 cup water
1 envelope onion soup mix
1/2 cup sour cream

In a large skillet, stir fry the beef in oil until no longer pink. Stir in soup, water and onion soup mix. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 20 mins. Stir in sour cream, heat through (do not boil) Serve over egg noodles. Makes about 6 servings.

Corn Dog Muffins

This is a huge hit w/ my family. A little spin on the typical corn dog. Much cheaper too!

2 pkgs (8.5 oz each) corn bread/muffin mix
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 11 oz can whole kernel corn, drained
5 hot dogs, chopped

In a bowl combine corn bread mix and brown sugar. Combine eggs and milk. Stir into dry ingredients until moistened. Stir in corn and hot dogs (batter will be thin). Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups 3/4 full. Bake at 400 for 14-18 mins or until golden brown. Serve immediately or refridgerate. Makes around 18 muffins.

I like to serve with french fries! It already has the veggie in it. My older son doesn't like veggies and even he will eat these eventhough there is corn in it!

Chocolate Chip Cake Bars

This is soooo easy and my kids loved it. I always have these ingredients on hand, so I decided to do something with them!

1 pkg yellow cake mix (I suppose chocolate would do as well)
2 eggs
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup water
2 cups (12 oz) semisweet chocolate chips, divided
1 tbsp shortening

In a bowl, combine the 1st 5 ingredients. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Stir in 1 1/2 cups chips. Spread into a greased 9x13 pan. Bake at 375 for 25 minutes until lightly browned and a toothpick comes out from the center clean. Cool on a wire rack. Melt the shortening w/ the reamining chips and drizzle over the top. Cut into bars. Makes about 3 dozen.

You can also add in 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Ham Potato Scallop

1 pkg (5 oz) scalloped potatoes
2 cups boiling water
2 tbsp butter or margarine
3/4 cup milk
2 cups fully cooked ham
1 pkg (10 oz) frozen cut green beans
1 cup (4 oz) shredded cheddar cheese

In a 3 qt ungreased casserole dish, combine potatoes w/ sauce mix, boiling water and butter. Stir in milk, ham and green beans. Bake uncovered around 35 mins at 400 or until the potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally so that the potatoes don't brown. Sprinkle w/ cheese and bake 5 more mins until cheese is melted. Let stand about 5 mins before serving.
Yields 4-6 servings.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Easy Banana Muffins

I will be making these muffins today. Andrew decided to open all of our bananas! *sigh*
I think that was his scheme, to get me to bake some yummy goodness.

I will be making these later and then posting pics :)

Easy Slow Cooker Pork Chops

This wasn't fantastic, but it wasn't terrible. I think I would change it up and add the apples in almost at the end. Apples and pork go well together, but the apples lose alot of their taste after cooking so long.

4 (1 inch thick) pork chops
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup sliced onions
2 tablespoons chicken soup base
1 (20 ounce) can apple pie filling
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Season pork chops with salt and pepper, and then brown them in the hot skillet. Remove from heat.
Spray the inside surface of a slow cooker with cooking spray. Arrange sliced onions in the bottom, and place pork chops on top of onions. Sprinkle with chicken base, and top with apple pie filling. Cook on Low for 5 to 6 hours, adding sweet potatoes during the last 1 1/2 hours of cooking.

Greek Penne and Chicken

Sorry, I cannot find my picture of this! I guarantee this is an excellent meal!!

1 (16 ounce) package penne pasta
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chopped red onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into bite-size pieces
1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts in water
1 tomato, chopped
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon dried oregano
salt to taste
ground black pepper to taste

In a large pot with boiling salted water cook penne pasta until al dente. Drain.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat melt butter, add onion and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add chopped chicken and continue cooking, stirring occasionally until golden brown, about 5 to 6 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium- low. Drain and chop artichoke hearts and add them, chopped tomato, feta cheese, fresh parsley, lemon juice, dried oregano, and drained penne pasta to the large skillet. Cook until heated through, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Season with salt and ground black pepper. Serve warm.

Stuffed Green Peppers

1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 onion, chopped
3/4 cup uncooked instant rice
3/4 cup water
1 (14.5 ounce) can peeled and diced tomatoes with juice
1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
6 large green bell peppers
1 (16 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce

In a large skillet or medium stock pot, brown the beef and onion over medium heat. Drain fat. Add rice, water, diced tomatoes, and stewed tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer until rice is tender. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Cut the tops off the bell peppers and clean out the seeds and membrane. (Note: You may have to slightly slice the bottom of the peppers to make them stand up.) Fill peppers with meat mixture.
Place in a casserole dish and bake in a preheated oven for 20 minutes or until peppers are as tender as you like. Served topped with spaghetti sauce.

Strawberry Banana Trifle!

This trifle is sure to please anyone! I tend to make this for Easter. It looks so yummy and pretty piled up nicely in a trifle bowl!

1 (5 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
3 cups cold milk
1 (9 inch) angel food cake, cut in cubes
4 bananas, sliced
1 (16 ounce) package frozen strawberries, thawed
1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

Prepare pudding with milk according to package directions. In a trifle bowl or other glass serving dish, layer half the cake pieces, half the pudding, half the bananas, half the strawberries and half the whipped topping. Repeat layers. Cover and chill in refrigerator 4 hours before serving.

Yay! A cooking blog!!

This is one of my passions. I love the kitchen and anything having to do with the kitchen. Well, except for cleaning it! ;)

With this blog, I hope to be able to showcase some recipes, as well as share some recipes with everyone, hopefully presenting a picture with each recipe.

Looking for a recipe? Let me know. Chances are I've made it or have a recipe for it. I will also be compiling a book of my fave recipes, in anticipation of getting it printed through Cafe Press.