Sunday, May 30, 2010

Philly Cheese Steak Sandwiches

okay.. I love experimenting. The food network is always making steak sandwiches so I thought I'd give it a shot... this is what I came up with. Turned out pretty good! Next time I want to try for a messyier sandwich and make a homemade cheese sauce to pour over the top... will put that on here sometime. But this was good for a less messy and healthier sandwich.

Di's Philly Cheese Steak Sandwich

2 pounds carne asada (this is thin sliced roast, you can get it at the butcher block in most stores)
1 medium onion, slicen thinly
1 red pepper, sliced thinly
1 green pepper, sliced thinly

Steaksauce (I use A-1 or lea & perrins)
Sandwich Rolls ( I like using the wheat Bolillio Rolls you can get at Walmart)
Salt and pepper
Provolone Cheese
Olive oil

First, slice the carne asada into about 1 inch strips. Heat a Tablespoon or two of olive oil in a large skillet, add carne asada and season with a little salt and pepper. Saute until beef is starting to brown.
Add 1/4 cup or more steak sauce to the beef. Cover with a lid, and simmer for about 1/2 an hour. This will help to tenderize the steak and give it flavor.Stir occasionally.



While steak is cooking, in another skillet, heat another tablespoon or so of olive oil. Add peppers and onions, stir fry on medium heat until crispy tender.



Preheat the oven to broil.

When the beef  and veggies are done. Slice sandwich rolls in half lengthwise, and lay on cookie sheet. Place a slice of provolone cheese on each half of the roll. Place under broiler for 2 to 3 minutes until cheese is bubbly and rolls start to brown around the edges.

To assemble, grab yourself a roll, pile on the beef, you can put sauce from pan or more steak sauce, or hot sauce on it, then add some of the veggies, salt and pepper to taste! and Enjoy!! Serve with chips, potato wedge fries, or a salad if you're being really healthy! Yummo!!!

Like I said, these would be really sinful with a cheese sauce on them instead of the provolone... Next time when I'm not watching my wasteline I'm going to try it!

Vegetable Salad

I used to make this salad all the time. I think one of Jim's sister in laws made it at a family BBQ. I loved it! It's different and really good. Just make it the night before or in the early morning before serving. The longer the veggies marinade the better. (Sorry, I dont' have a picture of this one either, if I make it this summer, I'll post a photo later)

Vegetable Salad

4 stalks fresh broccoli (use only bite-sized florets)
8 large fresh mushrooms sliced
1 medium green pepper, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped or sliced
1 small head cauliflower, broken into florets

1 package uncooked ramen  noodles, crushed (save the seasoning packet for something else.)



Marinade:
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons dry mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup white vinegar
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
1 small onion, minced
2 Tablespoons poppyseed (optional)

Combine vegetables in a bowl. Whisk marinade ingredients in a small bowl, pour over veggies, toss to coat. Let marinade for at least 3 hours. The longer the better. Keep stirring the veggies once in a while to make sure all the veggies are getting marinated.
Right before serving, toss in the crushed ramen noodles. Makes 10 to 12 servings.

Pizza Dip

This is a great dip for an appetizer at a BBQ! or pot luck for something different! we had this one day at our office, everyone takes a day to treat the office at Christmas time and this is what one of the lady's that I work with brought. Yummo!

Pizza Dip

2 (8 oz) packages Cream Cheese
1 small can diced olives
1 package Pepperoni (can use turkey pepperoni, less greasy) diced into small pieces
1/2 jar of pizza sauce
1 cup shredded cheese

Slice the cream cheese and arrange in the bottom of a glass 9x9 baking dish (slicing it up helps it spread easier)
Smooth the cream cheese to act as a crust. Spread the pizza sauce on next. Then sprinkle on the diced olives. Dice up the pepperoni into small pieces and sprinkle over the olives. Top with shredded mozzerella cheese. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes until the cheese is melted and the cream cheese is heated through.(or you can microwave on high for about 7 minutes, till the cheese melts and the rest is heated through) Serve with crackers, pita bread chips, or a thinly sliced bagguette. YUM!! Kids even like this one!!

**for even more pizza flavor, soften the cream cheese and add a pinch of basil and oregano and stir to combine and spread into the glass baking dish. For adults-- you can add chopped green or red peppers and green onions on the top.

Mexi Frito Salad

This is one of my favorite salad's that I've had at pot luck dinners at the church. I've made it a couple of times at family BBQ's. Always seems to be a big hit. Just don't add the fritos until you are ready to serve, they get soggy after awhile.  Just thought I'd add it since it's getting to be BBQ season.

Mexi Frito Salad

1 large can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 to 6 diced roma tomatoes, diced (depends on the size of the tomatoe)
1 green pepper, diced
1 bunch green onion, diced
1 small bottle catalina salad dressing

1 bag chilli cheese Fritos

Mix together the first 5 ingredients together in a tupperware with lid. Cover and chill in fridge to marinade. This is good to do the night before serving or early in the morning is you're serving in the afternoon.The flavors have a chance to mix.
When ready to serve, add a bag of chili cheese fritos and toss to coat. Yummo!!!

Pretzel Salad

I love pretzel salad.... Yum!! It's more like a dessert than a salad... but I'll eat it any time. You could make it with strawberries too if you like, just change the flavor of jello and fruit. I might give blackberry a try next time I make it.....

Pretzel Salad

1 (8 oz) package pretzels, crushed (2 cups)
3 Tablespoons sugar
3/4 cup butter, melted
1 (8-oz) package cream cheese
1 cup sugar
1 small carton cool whip
1 (6 oz) package raspberry jello
2 cups boiling water
1 (16 oz) package frozen raspberries

* Mix pretzels, 3 Tablespoons sugar, and melted butter together. Press into 9x13" pan. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool
*Cream together cream cheese and sugar til their are no lumps, then stir in cool whip. Spread over cooled pretzel crust and chill.
*Dissolve jello in the boiling water. Cool slightly then add frozen berries. Stir till soft set (about the consistency of eggwhites) and the jello has cooled off. Then pour over the top of the chilled cream cheese layer and chill in the fridge till jello is set. Then serve.
**Note: Be sure the cream cheese is really chilled and the jello is cooled--if jello is too hot it will melt the cream cheese and the cream cheese will come floating up into the jello that's why it works best to add frozen berries, the hot water will help thaw the berries too  : )

Carols' Chicken Cabbage Salad

This is one of our family's favorite salad's. Whenever we have a family get together my sister in law, Carol, brings this salad. It's one of the salad's that always gets comepletly eaten, it's really good!!

Carol's Chicken Cabbage Salad

Combine in large bowl:
1 head Cabbage, coarsely chopped
4 green onions, diced
1 lb. chicken breasts, cooked and diced

Right before serving add:
1 cup raw cashews
6 Tablespoons sesame seeds
1 package uncooked ramen noodles, crushed

Dressing:
ramen noodle seasoning
1/3 cup oil
1/4 cup white vinegar
3 Tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Whisk to combine and toss into the cabbage mixture.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Water Punch

This is the best lemonade.... not too sweet! I got the recipe from a lady in our ward, Athena Poole. Hope she doesn't mind me sharing the recipe.

Water Punch

5 quarts water
2  1/2 cups sugar
1 Tablespoon Citric acid powder (you get this in the pharmacy, they have it behind the counter)
1 Tablespoon Lemon extract
ice, sliced lemons and limes

Mix the water, sugar, citric acid powder and lemon extract in big pitcher or punch bowl. Stir to dissolve sugar. Add ice and sliced lemon and limes . A few mint leaves would be a nice garnish too along with the lemon and lime slices.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Mom B's Chicken Casserole

This recipe has to be one of the best comfort foods I know. My mom would make this when I was growing up, and whenever I make it, it reminds me of home. Yum!! Serve with fresh baked bread and it doesn't get any better!!!



Mom B's Chicken Casserole
 1 onion, chopped
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup dice carrots
1/2 cup uncooked rice
2 cups chicken broth
4 cups cooked chicken, diced
1 4-ounce can sliced mushrooms
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup mayonaise
 grated cheese for topping
1 to 2 cups breadcrumbs (depending on whether you are using a round or rectangle casserole dish)
1/4 cup melted butter

Boil chicken in water with boullion and a little onion ,celery. salt and pepper for an hour(adding a piece of onion and celery makes yummy chicken broth.) Let cool and de-bone and cut up.
Cook onion, celery, and carrots in 1 cup broth in a small saucepan. In another small sauce pan, cook the 1/2 cup rice in the other cup of broth . Cook both the veggies and rice for 10 minutes. While that is cooking, mix the soup, and mayo together, then add the chicken and mushrooms. Salt and pepper to taste. When veggies and rice have cooked for 10 minutes, stir into the soup mixture. Pour into a 2 quart casserole dish  that was sprayed with Pam.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, then top with cheese. I usually mix the melted butter with bread crumbs and add after the cheese. Bake an additional 5 to 10 minutes until cheese is melty and breadcrumbs are a golden brown.
Serve with warm bread and enjoy!!  Tastes like home!!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Wendy's Chili

Chili sounded so good yesterday  because it rained all day long!! It was one of those days you wish you could stay home curled up in a quilt with a good book. But since I had to work, I made chili when I got home and Sweet Corn Tamale Cakes. Yum!!! This is one of my favorite chili recipes, I love Wendy's chili!

Wendy's Chili

2 pounds lean ground beef
2-15 ounce cans tomato sauce
2-14 ounce cans kidney beans (with liquid)
2-14 ounce cans pinto beans (with liquid)
1 cup diced onion (1 medium onion)
1/2 cup dice green chili (I buy the canned or you can use 2 chilies)
1/4 cup diced celery (1 stalk)
3 medium tomatoes (chopped) or you can use 1-14 ounce can of diced tomatoes
2 teaspoons cumin powder
3 Tablespoons chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons salt
2 cups water

Garnish:
Grated cheese
Sour cream
Salsa

Brown the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat; drain off the fat. In a large pot combine the beef plus all the remaining ingredients, and bring to a simmer over low heat. Cook, stiring every 15 minutes for 2 to 3 hours. Garnish with grated cheese, a dallop of sour cream, and spoonful of salsa. Also goes good with Sweet Corn Tamale cakes on the side.
Makes about 12 servings.

NOTE: for a spicier chili, add 1/2 teaspoon more black pepper. For much spicier chili, add 1/2 teaspoon more black pepper and 1 Tablespoon cayenne pepper. And for a real stomach stinger, add 5 or 6 sliced jalapeno peppers to the pot. Leftovers can be frozen for several months.

Sweet Corn Tamale Cakes

It was a rainy day yesterday so I made chili and wanted something to go on/in it. I was going to make cornbread, but I had this recipe for Sweet Corn Tamale cakes so I gave it a try. It was yummy in chili, but I tried to substitute some creamed corn that I had accidently opened one day and had in the freezer, so my corn cakes came out kind of on the flat side. Still tasted good escpecially in chili so I thought I"d post the recipe. Next time I'll just use regular frozen corn, and I might try adding a few chopped green chili's.

Sweet Corn Tamale Cakes
1 1/2 cups frozen sweet corn
1/2 cup butter, softened (1 stick)
3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup masa harina (corn flour found where the Mexican foods are stocked)
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Prepare the tamale cakes by chopping 1 cup of the frozen corn in a food processor until it's coarsely pureed. Combine pureed corn with softened butter, sugar, and salt. Blend well with an electric mixer until smooth.
Add masa and flour and blend well. Mix in the remaining 1/2 cup of frozen corn kernals by hand.
Measure 1/2 cup portions of the mixture and form it into 3-inch wide pattie with your hands. Arrange the patties on a greased baking sheet and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the cakes are browned on the bottom. Carefully flip all cakes with a spatula and bake for an additional 5 to 7 minutes or until the other side is browned.
Serve with chili and enjoy!

Friday, May 14, 2010

BBQ Pizza

I had a lot of leftover pulled pork from the other night 's YM/YW's activity and I was craving pizza. I love BBQ chicken pizza and the chicken club pizza I make alot, so I came up with this. Would be good with cooked chicken too!!

BBQ Pizza

2 cups pulled pork
10 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled
BBQ sauce (I love Sweet Baby Ray's Original)
2 cups grated cheese
Chipotle Coleslaw--see my recipe on this blog
Diced tomatoes
Diced avacado
Pizza dough-- see my recipe on this blog

Preheat oven and pizza stone to 425 degrees. (if you don't have a pizza stone, just lay out dough on a cold greased cookie sheet or pizza pan) When pizza stone is hot, carefully remove from oven and lay dough out on it that you've rolled out in flour and cornmeal to the approximate size of stone. After you've gotten the dough on the stone quickly squeeze on the BBQ sauce, and then distribute the pork around evenly. Place in oven and bake 10 minutes. Then sprinkle on crumpled bacon and grated cheese and bake another 3 to 5 minutes until crust is done and cheese is bubbly. Remove from oven and cut into pieces. Spread coleslaw on the top and garnish with diced tomatoes and avacado. Enjoy!!! This is my new favorite!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Pioneer Woman’s Cinnamon Rolls

After I saw these cinnamon rolls posted on Alison's blog I just had to try making them, I go to the Pioneer Woman's blog quite a bit, and I've seen this recipe, but Alison made them look so yummy I had to try my hand at them. I halfed the recipe cuz it makes a ton, and I still got a big cookie sheet full. And of course I left the coffe out of the icing, cuz we don't drink it. Still yummo!! Got milk??

Pioneer Woman’s Cinnamon Rolls

Prep Time: 2 Hours Cook Time: 30 Minutes Difficulty: Easy

Ingredients:
1 quart Whole Milk
1 cup Vegetable Oil
1 cup Sugar
2 packages Active Dry Yeast
8 cups (Plus 1 Cup Extra, Separated) All-purpose Flour
1 teaspoon (heaping) Baking Powder
1 teaspoon (scant) Baking Soda
1 Tablespoon (heaping) Salt
Plenty Of Melted Butter
1 cup Sugar ( I use half brown and half white granulated)
Generous Sprinkling Of Cinnamon
_____

MAPLE FROSTING:
1 bag Powdered Sugar
2 teaspoons Maple Flavoring
½ cups Milk
¼ cups Melted Butter
¼ cups Brewed Coffee
⅛ teaspoons Salt

Preparation Instructions

Mix the milk, vegetable oil and sugar in a pan. “Scald” the mixture (heat until just before the boiling point). Turn off heat and leave to cool 45 minutes to 1 hour. When the mixture is lukewarm to warm, but NOT hot, sprinkle in both packages of Active Dry Yeast. Let this sit for a minute. Then add 8 cups of all-purpose flour. Stir mixture together. Cover and let rise for at least an hour.

After rising for at least an hour, add 1 more cup of flour, the baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir mixture together. (At this point, you could cover the dough and put it in the fridge until you need it – overnight or even a day or two, if necessary. Just keep your eye on it and if it starts to overflow out of the pan, just punch it down).

When ready to prepare rolls: Sprinkle rolling surface generously with flour. Take half the dough and form a rough rectangle. Then roll the dough thin, maintaining a general rectangular shape. Drizzle 1/2 to 1 cup melted butter over the dough. Now sprinkle 1 cup of sugar over the butter followed by a generous sprinkling of cinnamon.

Now, starting at the opposite end, begin rolling the dough in a neat line toward you. Keep the roll relatively tight as you go. Next, pinch the seam of the roll to seal it.

Spread 1 tablespoon of melted butter in a seven inch round foil cake or pie pan. Then begin cutting the rolls approximately ¾ to 1 inch thick and laying them in the buttered pans.

Repeat this process with the other half of the dough. Let the rolls rise for 20 to 30 minutes, then bake at 375 degrees (see note below) until light golden brown, about 15 to 18 minutes.

For the frosting, mix together all ingredients listed and stir well until smooth. It should be thick but pourable. Taste and adjust as needed. Generously drizzle over the warm rolls. Go crazy and don’t skimp on the frosting.

Ricotta and Spinach Stuffed Shells with Alfredo and Spaghetti Sauce

I wasn't quite sure what I was making for dinner tonight, but I knew I had some ricotta cheese I needed to use up, and hamburger thawing, so I stopped by the grocery store and picked up some Jumbo shells. When I got home I also saw the heavy whipping cream I needed to use up, so this is what I came up with. I made a fresh batch of spaghetti sauce, but use left over if you have it. This was so yummo if I do say so myself.....

Ricotta and Spinach Stuffed Shells with Alfredo and Spaghetti Sauce

16 Jumbo pasta shells, cooked and drained (can use more shells, just depends on how full you stuff them)
Alfredo sauce (recipe to follow)
Spaghetti sauce (approx. 2 cups)--Have this heating in a saucepan (see my spaghetti sauce recipe)
1 15-ounce carton ricotta cheese (I use the part skim)
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon basil (approx)
1/4 teaspoon italian seasoning( approx, could use oregano if you don't have the mix)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Dash of pepper
1/2 cup grated mozerella cheese
1 cup chopped frozen spinach, thawed and drained well, (I squeeze out the moisture with my hand)
Parmesan cheese for garnish

Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Stir together the ricotta cheese, egg, basil, italian seasoning, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Next add the cheese and the spinach, stir to combine. Spoon about a heaping Tablespoon or so into each shell. Pour alfredo sauce into the bottom of a 13 x 9 inch casserole pan. Place the shells in the pan as you fill each one. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove aluminum foil and bake an additional 5 minutes. Remove from oven and spoon a little spaghetti sauce over each one. Garnish with parmesan cheese. Serve 2 or 3 per serving. Have the remaining spaghetti sauce on the table for individual use. Goes well with steamed veggie's and french bread or bread sticks. Enjoy!!

Alfredo Sauce
3 tablespoons Butter
1 heaping Tablespoon minced garlic
1 cup heavy whipping cream (1 small carton, if not quite a cup, can add milk to it to make a cup)
1/2 up grated Parmesan cheese
Dash of nutmeg
Salt and pepper to taste
Melt butter in a small saucepan, add garlic and saute for a couple of minutes. Whisk in cream and simmer for 3 or 4 minutes. Then whisk in cheese, nutmeg, and a dash of salt and pepper. Simmer till thickened, (about 8 min.) Don't bring to full boil at this point or the sauce will separate and turn grainy.

My tried and true Spaghetti Sauce










This is one of those recipes I've been making since before I was married!! I love it cuz you can add hot sausage to it if you want with the hamburger, and it always turns out good.

Di's Spaghetti Sauce

1 pound lean ground beef
1/2 medium sized onion, diced
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 green pepper, diced
1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
1 15-ounce can of water or tomato or V-8 juice (I fill the empty can of tomatoe sauce with  this to measure it and  to rinse out the can) you can add a little more if needed
1 4-ounce can sliced mushrooms, drained
1 Tablespoon parsley
1 Tablespoon Cornstarch
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon basil
3/4 teaspoon italian seasoning (or mixture of oregano, basil, sage, rosemary, and thyme)
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes. (I like my sauce to have a slight zing!)

Brown beef with onion, garlic, and green pepper in skillet. Add tomatoes, tomatoe sauce, tomato paste, and juice or water, and mushrooms to the beef and stir. Mix the remaining ingredients together and then stir in to sauce mixture. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
Serve over hot spaghetti noodles, and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Great with salad and crusty french bread or breadsticks. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Pulled Pork Sandwiches and Cole Slaw

I love pulled pork sandwiches, especially topped with coleslaw. I serve these quite a bit in the summer for big family BBQ's cuz you don't have to heat up the oven. We made these last night for a YM/YW's combined end of school year dinner, those that dared to put the coleslaw on them, loved it! That's the only way I eat pulled pork sandwiches now. Serve with potatoe wedge fries, chips or salads and Yummo!!

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

a 3 or 4 pound Pork Roast (any will do, I buy whatever's on sale)
Grill Mates Montreal Steak Seasoning (or what ever seasoning you want to use, regular salt and pepper works too with a little garlic powder, and onion powder)
Liquid Smoke ( I like the hickory flavor)
BBQ sauce (recipe to follow)
Hard rolls
Cole Slaw (see recipe on my blog -both original and chipotle coleslaw are great)

Stab holes with fork all over roast, sprinkle with liquid smoke and Montreal Steak seasoning. Place roast in crock pot or roaster on low, let cook all day. (or on high for 5 to 6 hours) When Pork is fall apart tender, remove from crock pot and shred with two forks or pull apart with your fingers after it's cooled a bit.
Drain juice from crock pot (I strain it into a small container to add to pork later if necessary) Place pulled pork back in crockpot, and season with more salt and pepper to taste. Add BBQ sauce to taste and if pork is dry add a spoonful or two of the juice.
Serve on hardrolls (my favorite are the hardrolls you can get at Walmart) Top with a spoonful of coleslaw and enjoy!!

BBQ sauce 
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup minced onion
1-1/2 cups water
1 can tomato paste
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tablespoons honey
2 Tablespoons molasses
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1-3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon liquid smoke (I usually use Mesquite or Hickory flavor)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon paprika

Heat oil in medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and saute for a few minutes till they turn translucent and start to brown slightly. Add the rest of the ingredients, and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer, stirring occasionally for 1-1/2 hours uncovered so the sauce will thicken slightly. Chill or pour over pulled pork (may not need all of it, can keep leftovers in a tupperware in freezer or in jar in fridge for later use)

Veggie Pizza

I made this Veggie pizza at our mother/daughter luncheon as well. I love it cuz it's like your vegigie's and dip in a pizza. I've combined a couple of recipes one from my Pamper Chef cookbook and the other from Allrecipes.com. Everyone seemed to like it!

Veggie Pizza
2 8-ounce pkges. cresent roll dough
1 8-ounce pkge. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup real mayonaise
3 teaspoons ranch dressing mix
1 teaspon dill weed
1/2 to 1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 to 3 cups chopped vegis, any combination works
(I used carrots, green pepper, brocolli, zucchini, green onions, also can use red pepper, cauliflower, or celery)
1/2 to 3/4 cup grated cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray a jellyroll pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Pat crescent roll dough into a jellyroll pan. Let stand 5 minutes. Pierce with fork. Bake for 10 minutes or until crust is golden brown, let cool. I cut my crust into squares before putting the rest of the toppings on, easier to cut that way.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, sourcream, mayo, ranch dressing mix,  dill weed, and garlic. Spread this mixture on top of the cooled crust. Arrange the vegetables on top of the creamed mixture. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the top. Cover and let chill until ready to serve. Enjoy!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Creamy Lemon Bars

I made these for our Mother/Daughter luncheon last Sat. They were yummy! more like cheesecake than my regular lemon bars. I got this recipe from Kraftfoods.com, but tweaked it a bit and added the crumb topping from my lemon cake recipe. They were awesome!!

Creamy Lemon Bars

30 (more or less) NILLA Wafers, finely crushed (about 1 cup)
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup cold margarine (diced)
1 pkg. (8 oz.)Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs 2 Tbsp. flour
1 Tbsp. lemon zest
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 tsp.  Baking Powder
2 tsp. powdered sugar

Vanilla-Lemon crumb topping:
1/4 cup plus 1 Tablespoon flour
1/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons powdered sugar
pinch of salt
2 Tablespoons butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon lemon extract

 Heat oven to 350ºF.
LINE 8-inch square pan with foil. Mix wafer crumbs, 1/4 cup flour and brown sugar in medium bowl. Cut in margarine with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs; press onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake for 15 min.
While crust bakes:
Beat cream cheese and granulated sugar with mixer until well blended. Add eggs and 2 Tbsp. flour; mix well. Blend in 1 Tbsp. zest, juice and baking powder; pour over crust.
BAKE 25 to 28 min. or until center is set. Cool completely. Refrigerate 2 hours.
To make the crumb topping:
Make the crumb topping by combining the flour, powdered sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Add the butter and dribble in the vanilla and lemon extracts. Use your hands to mix the butter into the flour and sugar until mixture is crumbly, with no pieces larger than a pea. Chill mixture in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.
When bars are chilled, lift out of pan with sides of aluminum foil. Sprinkle with crumb topping (you my not need it all). Cut into squares and serve.

**NoteYou should get about 1 Tbsp. zest and 2 Tbsp. juice from 1 lemon.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Bruschetta

I love Bruschetta!! Especially with Sundried tomatoes in it with olive oil.. YUMMMMM!
I made this for part of our Mother's day lunch we had . It was fun, I also made a vegi pizza, and creamy lemon bars which I will post later.

Bruschetta

6 firm roma tomatoes, finely diced (about 3 cups)
1 1/2 teaspoons basil ( or 1 to 2 tablespoon fresh minced if you have it, I only had dried)
2 to 3 teaspoons minced garlic
4 teaspoons  diced sun-dried tomatoes ( I used the already diced in herb flavored olive oil)
4 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt

1 baguette loaf of bread sliced into 1/2 inch thick diagonal slices
about 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
pinch of dried parsely

1. Toss tomatoes with basil, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, olive oil, vinegar, and salt in a medium bowl. Cover and chill for 1 hour or so.
2. When you are ready to serve, preheat oven to broil.
3. Combine the parmesan cheese and dired parsley in a small bowl. Arrange the bread slices on a baking sheet. Spray a little Pam cooking spray on each, Sprinkle a couple of pinches of  the Parmesan cheese mixture over each slice.  Broil 1 to 2 minutes until the bread starts to turn golden brown around the edges and the cheese is a little melty.
4. Pour the tomates into a serving dish (strain off the liquid first) and serve along side the tasted bread slices.
Enjoy!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Fried Shrimp Po' Boys

I watch the food network all the time, and Emeril Lagasse made these except he didn't put the coleslaw on them, that was my idea... This has become one of our favorites, especially Andrew's. I usually serve them with potato wedge fries... Yummo!!!

Fried Shrimp Po'Boys

2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined (or more if you are making more than 4 to 6 sands)
Creole Seasoning (I've used Tony Chachere's)
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal

Hard rolls, or sub sandwich rolls ( I like to use Walmart hardrolls, they have great texture)
Cole Slaw (see my recipe on this blog)
Hot sauce (we like Louisianna Hot Sauce)

In a medium mixing bowl combine the flour and cornmeal and 2 Tablespoons creole seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt,  1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Set aside. (FYI-you might have some of this mixture left over after dredging your shrimp, I keep in a ziploc sandwich bag in the freezer to use the next time I make these)
Heat the oil in a large sauce pan or preheat a deep fryer to 360 degrees. Lightly season the shrimp with the Creole seasoning on both sides. Dredge the shrimp in the cornmeal mixture, coating the shrimp completely.
Fry the shrimp in hot oil, in batches, until golden brown, stirring occasionally so they don't stick together, about 4 minutes. Remove from the oil and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.
When shrimp is all cooked,  have as many hard rolls as you need opened and placed on a cookie sheet, spray with Pam cooking spray, broil in oven 2 minutes until they just begin to toast (don't get them too crispy)
To assemble sandwiches, Lay 6 to 8 shrimp on the bottom of your sandwich roll (depending on the size of the shrimp and the roll) I lay my first shrimp flat, then kind of overlap them on each other. Sprinkle with hot sauce, top with a spoonfull of cole slaw, and then comes the top of the sandwich. Serve with potatoe wedge fries and fry sauce and dig in!! Yummmmmmm!!!

Classic Coleslaw and Chipotle Coleslaw

I love Cole Slaw, especially on pulled pork sandwiches or Shrimp Po'Boy sandwiches, and yes, even on tacos! This is the classic cole slaw recipe on the back of the mayo jar, but I tweaked it a bit .... mmmmm and following is the Chipotle coleslaw recipe that was on the Mayonaise jar.. that one is awesome on tacos and pulled pork sandwiches.. YUMMO!

Classic Cole Slaw
1 cup Best Foods Real Mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon Lemon juice
2 Tablespoons Vinegar
2 Tablespoons Sugar
1 Tablespoon milk
1/2 teaspoon celery seed
1/2 teaspoon salt
dash or two of ground black pepper
1 big package coleslaw mix (the pre-shredded cabbage mixture by the bags of salad) can use two small bags if they don't have the big ones-- or you can mix your own, it's about 6 cups shredded cabbage and 1 cup shredded carrots, may add 1/2 cup really thin sliced green pepper if you want, but I usually don't.

Combine everything in a big bowl except the cabbage mixture, whisk to make sure it's mixed well. Taste, can add more vinegar or sugar to your taste.... I think I make it different everytime I make it. 
Then pour in the coleslaw mix and toss to coat, cover and keep in fridge until ready to serve so the flavors mix.
Like I said before it's great in a pulled pork sandwich!! Yummo!

Also if you like spicy try this recipe:

Chipotle Coleslaw Sauce

1/2 cup Best Foods Real Mayonaise
1 or 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (canned, I just use1 or 2 peppers and a spoonfull of sauce and keep the rest in the freezer) REMEMBER these are quite spicy
2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 Tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt and pepper to taste
1 regular size bag of classic coleslaw mix
Mix all ingredients together in a blender until smooth except for cabbage mixture. Put Classic coleslaw mix into a large bowl, pour Chipotle sauce over coleslaw mix and toss to coat. Cover and set aside in refrigerator 30 minutes or until ready to eat.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

P.F. Chang's Dan-Dan Noodles

This is a recipe I got out of a new cookbook I ordered. Whenever we go to Salt Lake City we like to try new restaurants, we've eaten at P.F. Chang's a few times. Their food is yummy! But could be a bit expensive, so I love it when I can mimic restaurant food at home...I made this for dinner last night and it was way yummy. I tweaked it a bit..

P.F. Changs Dan-Dan Noodles

2 boneless, skinless Chicken breasts, cooked and minced (about 2 cups)
1- 6-ounce package chow mein noodles(they look kind of like ramen noodles-see pic of package below)
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1/4 cup chopped green onions, (green part only)
6 Tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce ( you can find this in the asian cooking section of the grocery store)
4 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup water

Garnish:
1/2 cucumber, julienned
1 can bean sprouts, drained and rinsed

1-I chop up the chicken in my cuisinart chopper till it almost looks like ground chicken. Then heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a frying pan, add chicken and saute until chicken is done. I sprinkle on a little salt and pepper while it's cooking. Or you can cook the chicken breasts, whole,  in a little oil in skillet for 10 to 12 minutes, then cool and mince into little pieces with a sharp knife. Either way works.
2- Prepare noodles by bringing 8 to 10 cups water in a big pot to a boil, add the noodles and boil for 3 to 5 minutes, drain, place back in pot and toss  with a little splash of sesame oil if you have it, if not regular vegetable oil is okay.
3. Make sauce by heating 2 more Tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium heat in a saucepan or wok. Add garlic and green onion and saute for just a few seconds, being careful not to burn the garlic. Add the soy sauce, chicken broth, brown sugar and chili-garlic sauce. Combine the cornstarch and the water together, then add to the sauce mixture. Simmer sauce for about 2 minutes or until it thickens.
4. When the sauce is thick, add the chicken and simmer for 5 more minutes.
5. Pile cooked noodles onto a serving plate (or place an individual serving on a plate) Spoon chicken and sauce over the top of the noodles, then garnish with julienned cucumber on one side and bean sprouts on the other.
Enjoy! Serves 4 people
**This is what the package of chow mein noodles looked like. Dont' get the crispy ones that come in a can.