Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Pancakes --made from Scratch, not from a mix!!

Last Sunday morning I woke up craving pancakes.... I mean I was REALLY craving pancakes. I went to the refrigerator to get my Bisquick baking mix, and there was none to be found... even in my pantry ! I always have an extra box of Bisquick lying around! So I resorted to my good old Better Homes and Gardens cookbook for a recipe for Pancakes, and of course I tweaked it a bit. I know most everyone probably knows how to make pancakes from scratch, but just in case not, I'm posting it, especiallly for my daughter since I started this blog for her. I smothered my pancakes with a little butter and then some peach/pineapple jam that I had made last fall.... MMMMMMM what's better than warm pancakes on a fallish morning??

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 beaten egg
1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup milk
2 Tablespoons cooking oil (I used grape seed oil, but canola is good too)

In a mixing bowl; stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In another mixing bowl, combine the egg, vanilla, milk and cooking oil. Add this mixture to the flour mixture all at once. Then stir the mixture just till blended but slightly lumpy. (over mixing will cause your pancakes to be tough)
Heat a large skillet or griddle over medium/high heat. When hot, spray with non-stick cooking spray, then pour about 1/4 cup of your pancake batter onto the hot griddle or pan. Cook till bubbles form and the edges are slightly dry, then turn and cook the other side until they are golden brown. Serve with butter, your favorite syrups and jams. YUMM! This recipe makes about 8 to 10 standard size pancakes.

Variation: To make Buttermilk Pancakes prepare just the same except reduce baking powder to 1 teaspoon and add 1/2 teaspoon baking soda to the flour mixture, and substitute Buttermilk or sour milk for the regular milk. Add additional buttermilk if the batter is too thick and you need to thin it out a bit. Cook as directed in the above recipe.

Triple Chocolate Brownies

My sister made these at our 4th of July party this year, and the other day after a stressful day at work I just needed a really chocolatey chocolate brownie. They were just what I needed. She made hers with instant coffee... I loved the mocha-chocolate flavor, but you dont' have to use coffee. With mine, since I don't drink coffee, but I had some Postum (which is supposed to taste like coffee). I put some in my brownies but couldn't taste it really... I'm not sure if it enhanced the chocolate flavor but they were good, and really a dark chocolatey goodness that I needed at the moment. YUMMO!

Triple Chocolate Brownies

1 stick plus 6 tablespoons butter
6 (1-oz) squares bittersweet baking chocolate
1 Tablespoon (heaping if you want more of a mocha flavor) instant coffee granules (optional, just as good without)
3 eggs
1 scant cup granulated sugar (just under a cup)
1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup plus 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans (or walnuts) if desired
Approximately 2 teaspoons powdered sugar, for garnish if desired

Line a 9x9 square glass baking pan with parchment paper ( you can spray with non-stick cooking spray as well, I like lining mine with parchment paper with a little hanging over the sides, after brownies cool, you can lift out of the pan, and cut into pretty squares)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Melt the butter and dark chocolate together in a large heavy based pan over a medium/low heat. If you are making yours with the coffee in it, add the coffee granules to this butter/ chocolate mixture.
In a bowl, beat the eggs together with the sugar and vanilla extract.
Allow the chocolate mixture to cool a little, then add the egg/sugar mixture and beat well. Fold in the flour and salt. Then stir in the white chocolate chips, the semisweet chocolate chips and the nuts; stir to combine. Pour the brownie mixture into the prepared baking pan, (be sure to scrape the bowl with a rubber spatuala to get all the batter out.... or you can be like me and leave a little in there to lick while waiting for the brownies!!)
Bake for about 20-25 minutes. You can see when the brownies are ready because the top dries to a slightly lighter brown speckle, while the middle remains dark, dense and gooey. Keep checking on it: the difference between gooey brownies and dry ones is only a few minutes. Remember, too, that they will continue to cook a little as they cool.
To serve, cut into squares while still warm and pile up on a large plate, sprinkling with powdered sugar pushed with a teaspoon through a small sieve. Serve with ice cream while still warm... YUMMO

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Smoked Ribs

We bought a Traeger Smoker last year, and I've been experimenting with Ribs all summer long. I finally got a recipe worthy of 'blogging' about. I loved this one-- I loved the flavor we got after 'painting' the ribs first with yellow mustard, and then smoking for about 6 hours. I used my usual BBQ sauce but I had added just a pinch or two of Jamaican Allspice. They weren't quite falling off the bone, but extremely tender, juicy and flavorful... YUMMO!!

Di's Smoked Ribs
2 racks Pork Baby Back Ribs
Yellow mustard (like French's)
Grill Mates Montreal Steak Seasoning
Traeger Poultry Rub (or pork and poultry rub, I used what I had)
BBQ sauce (any kind you like, I like my homemade sauce, see below)

Bring your Ribs to room temperature, by rinsing and patting dry, then let sit out on a cookie sheet till they are room temperature, (no longer than 30 minutes though).
When you are ready to smoke... have your smoker full of wood chips, we usually use Hickory, or Mesquite. I turn on our smoker and leave at the lowest setting which is Smoke, and let heat for 5 minutes with the lid closed.
While your smoker is heating, paint a thin layer of yellow mustard all over the ribs both sides. Then sprinkle the Montreal Steak seasoning over both sides, and then sprinkle a layer of the poultry rub over both sides.
When smoker is ready, place ribs bone side down on the rack and smoke for 5 to 6 hours until meat is starting to pull back from the bone. During the last 30 to 40 minutes, I brush BBQ sauce on the top of my Ribs every 10 to 15 minutes.
When done, remove from smoker and let sit for 5 minutes before slicing into single portions.
Serve with salads, or potato wedge fries, or chipotle mac n' cheese! YUMMO

Di's BBQ Sauce
I think my sauce turns out different every time I make it because I usually end up adding different spices like Jamaican All Spice, or more or less vinegar, and sometimes I add chipotle peppers or powder.... but here is my basic recipe.
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup minced onion
1 heaping teaspoon, minced garlic
1-1/2 cups water
1 sm. can tomato paste
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tablespoons honey
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1-3/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons liquid smoke (I usually use Mesquite or Hickory flavor)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle powder (use a whole teaspoon full if you like more spice
1/2 teaspoon paprika

Heat oil in medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and saute for a few minutes, then add the minced garlic and cook a couple more minutes until the onions turn translucent and start to brown slightly. Add the rest of the ingredients and whisk to combine. Bring mixture to a boil over medium/high heat. Reduce heat and let simmer, stirring occasionally for 1-1/2 hours uncovered so the sauce will thicken slightly. Remove from heat. Use on ribs or in pulled pork for sandwiches or however you desire. Yummo!!!

Monday, August 22, 2011

'Nutter Butter Balls (or does it sound better to call them Truffles)

The other day at a wedding reception they served Oreo Truffles (or Oreo Balls) and while I was eating them I wondered if they would be good made with Nutter Butter Cookies instead of a couple of weekends ago I thought I would give it a shot! I'm always up for experimenting in the kitchen. I used a whole package of nutter butters that I crumbled in my food processor and then added an 8 oz package of cream cheese and whipped them together like you do for the oreo balls. Something wasn't quite right, they didn't seem peanut buttery enough so I added a little peanut butter, tasted and added a little more. Then they didn't seem sweet enough or something and didn't quite hold together. I thought about adding in powdered sugar but the mixture was on the dry side already. Then I remembered I had a small jar of marshmellow creme up in the cupboard that I hadn't used yet. Perfect!! It's just what it needed! The filling tasted like the middle of Reese's Peanut Butter cups!  I dipped them in melted dipping chocolate and added a little melted orange candy melts for a decoration (since it's feeling fallish outside!) Next time I make them I may not add the cream cheese, and might just use a large jar of marshmellow cream, I'm still tweaking this recipe. But since they turned out yummo I thought I would post the recipe for how I made them so far. Enjoy!

Nutter Butter Truffles
1 package Nutter Butter cookies
1 (8-oz) package cream cheese, brought to room temperature
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1 small jar marshmellow cream
Dipping Chocolate
White chocolate or colored candy melts for garnishing

Crumble the whole package of nutter butters in a food processor (I broke them in half while putting them in the processor) and process until they are the texture of coarse cornmeal, if there are a few bigger crumbs that's okay.
Place the cookie crumbs in a large bowl of a mixer along with the cream cheese, peanut butter and marshmellow creme. Blend together until all the ingredients are incorporated together.
Roll into the desired size of balls, (I used my small cookie dough scoop, but I think they could have been made a little smaller, just depends on how big you want your truffles, mine were 2-bite size but you could go for pop-the-whole-thing-in-your-mouth size)
Place the balls on a cookie sheet and chill in the refrigerator, or freeze them (I heard freezing them is good for dipping, they don't soften as fast)
Melt your dipping chocolate. I started with about 2 cups of chopped Guittard milk chocolate for candy making. I mircrowaved for about a minute, then stirred the chocolate. If it isn't quite melted, microwave for 20 seconds more then stir. Continue to microwave for 20 seconds then stir until it's completly melted.
To dip the balls you can stab them with a toothpick and dip them in, or I remove the 2 middle tines of a plastic fork and drop the balls in the chocolate, making sure they are covered with chocolate by spooning it  over them, then I scoop them out with my two-tined fork and then let them sit and drip a bit to remove the excess chocolate. Then I put them back on a wax-paper lined cookie sheet.
When they are all dipped, I melt my white chocolate the same way and put in a baggy with the corner snipped off and drizzle over the top for decoration. Then I put back in the refridgerator to chill and set.
YUM!! (these are quite rich, but I still bet you can't eat just one!)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Teriyaki Chicken Pizza with Grilled Veggies

Here's another Pizza that was wonderful! If you love Teriyaki anything you will love this pizza. I wanted to experiment with another pizza and I love chicken teriyaki stirfry. When I was in SLC this last month, we ate at California Pizza Kitchen, and my sister got a Chicken Thai Pizza which got me thinking about what I could put on another pizza. I thought of Chicken Kabobs which usually have zucchini, onions, peppers, and pineapple so I thought why not, I have tons of zucchini in the garden?? Plus I had some Teriyaki sauce in the freezer that was leftover from our family 4th of July party...what a good way to use that up, right? This was soooo good that I've made it twice! Yes... even before posting. There are quite a few different components in this pizza. You could make the Teriyaki sauce ahead of time and keep in the refrigerator a day or two or freeze it. I marinated the chicken and vegetables in some of the marinade and then grilled them, so you could do that while your pizza dough rises. Or, if you have leftover cooked chicken, just saute in a pan with a little teriyaki sauce, and then bake the veggies in the oven at about 350 for 15 to 20 minutes. I hope you like it as much as I did! YUMMO!

Teriyaki Chicken Pizza with Grilled Veggies

1 pound boneless skinless chicken tenders (or 2 cups cooked chicken, or chopped)
1 zucchini, sliced into 1/8 to 1/4 inch slices
1/2 green bell pepper, sliced into strips
1/2 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
1 small can pineapple tidbits, drained
3 green onions, diced
6 slices provolone cheese
2 cups (approx)  grated cheese (mozerella, colby jack, cheddar or whatever you prefer)

Pizza Dough (see recipe below) you will want to have made this ahead of time
Teriyaki sauce (See recipe below) you can use bottle Teriyaki if you like, just simmer so it reduces and thickens a little
1/4 cup (approx) Barbeque sauce (any kind you like)

Make the Teriyaki sauce and marinate your chicken in about 1/4 cup and the vegetables in another 1/4 cup if you are going to to do that. Then grill on a medium/high heated grill for about 5 minutes per side for the chicken and about 10 minutes for the veggies, use a veggie tray to grill them (or if you like, marinade the veggies and roast in the oven about 15 minutes on a greased cookie sheet at 350 degrees.Then remove from oven and set aside until you're ready to assemble your pizza and if you are using already cooked chicken just saute it in a skillet with about 1/4 cup Teriyaki sauce to warm up and coat with the sauce)
Mix the BBQ sauce with about 1/2 cup of the Teriyaki sauce in a small saucepan and set aside.
Preheat oven and pizza stone (if you are using one) to 450 degrees. If your not using a pizza stone, prepare pizza pan by lightly greasing with olive oil or spraying with a non-stick cooking spray.
Have all your pizza ingredients ready before starting to assemble your pizza.
When ready to assemble pizza, roll out your pizza dough into the size of circle you need and place on hot stone (be careful not to burn yourself) or onto greased pan.
Next, spread on the Teriyaki/BBQ sauce mixture (use as much of it as you like), then place the slices of provolone cheese on your pizza, I put one in the center and the other 5 spaced evenly around the dough. Next comes your chicken, vegetables and pineapple. Pop this into your preheated oven for about 8 minutes. Then sprinkle on the grated cheese and sliced green onion, and then it goes back into the oven for 3 to 5 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and the crust is golden brown underneath and around the edges.
Remove from oven, cut into slices and enjoy!!

Best Basic Pizza Dough
This makes 2 12-inch pizzas or a single thicker crust 16 inch (that's what I made)
1 packet active dry yeast
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 Tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing bowl, dough ball and crust
1 teaspoon kosher salt (regular salt will be fine if you don't have this)
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting work surface
1 cup slighty warm water
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a dough hook, pour the warm water in and sprinkle with yeast, and sugar. Whisk this to combine, then let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. (HINT: do not use hot water or it will kill the yeast and your dough will not rise. I feel the temp on my wrist and if it's just slightly warm, that's what you want to use)
Add the oil, salt and a cup of the flour into yeast mixture.
With mixer on low, slowly add the rest of flour and mix until a dough ball forms. You may want to transfer to a floured work surface and knead by hand until a smooth ball comes together, but I let my mixer do the kneading and let it go about 5 minutes and I add a sprinkle of flour every now and then so the dough doesn't stick to the bowl.
Transfer the dough into a bowl that you've brushed with olive oil. After I put my dough ball into the bowl I turn it so the oil side is up or you can brush the top with a little more oil. Cover this with plastic wrap and place in a warm area for about an hour or until dough has doubled in size.
Then punch down dough and let rest until ready to make your pizza!

Teriyaki Marinade and/or Sauce

1 1/2 cups water
1 cup soy sauce
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced (remember those tubes in Walmarts produce department, love 'em)
Make Marinade by combining all the ingredients in a small saucepan over medium/high heat. Bring mixture to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes or longer until sauce slightly thickens. Cover and chill marinade in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. (This makes plenty of marinade for this recipe, only use what you need and put rest of marinade in a jar or Tupperware and use later at another time).

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Bow-tie Lasagna

Lately the weather has just had a "fallish" feel to it... it seems the minute the calendar turns to August and they get school supplies back in the stores, fall is just in the air. I came home from work craving something with pasta and cheese in it, and all I had thawed out was hamburger. So I began to browse my favorite food blogs and of course! I found just what I was looking for on the Pioneer Woman's blog.... but I tweaked it just a bit... I will post what my recipe ended up being  here but if you want to see the original recipe go to this link then type in bow tie lasagna in the search. This is just what I was hungry for and was easy and pretty quick to make. I served mine with sauteed zucchini and Sizzler toast!(see earlier posts) yum!! When I think of Fall I think of Casseroles, and comfort food and this was just what I needed (except the for second helping I ate... not sure if I needed that!) but it was YUMMO!

Bow-tie Lasagna

4 cups uncooked Bow-Tie Pasta
1-1/2 pounds ground beef
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1/2 medium onion, diced
1 heaping teaspoon minced garlic, (or 1 large garlic clove, minced.. I used the already minced in a jar)
1 jar Newman's Own 'Sock-a-rooni' Spaghetti Sauce (or your favorite jarred/canned Marinara Sauce you need about 3 cups)
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning (or more to suit your taste... or you can use fresh basil leaves, fresh thyme, and rosemary like I did if you have it)
1 teaspoon Salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 to 1/2  teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional.. I like a slight spicy kick to my lasagna)
½  (15-oz) carton ricotta Cheese (**see note below)
½ cups Mozzarella Cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
Preparation Instructions:
Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, brown ground beef in a large, deep skillet along with the diced onion and garlic.
When browned, drain excess fat from the beef and add your spaghetti sauce
and seasonings and let simmer for about 5 to 10 minutes so the seasonings can disperse into the sauce. Then stir in your ricotta and mozzarella cheese, stirring to combine.
Drain your pasta and add to the sauce mixture. Toss to coat the pasta and let cook about 3 to 5 minutes more so the cheese can melt. Top with the Parmesan Cheese and Serve! Yummo!
**I always use Ricotta cheese in my lasagna so I used it in this as well so it tasted more like my lasagna. The Pioneer Woman used 1/2 cup Sour Cream instead, use what suits your taste.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Sauteed Zucchini with Basil and Parmesan Cheese

I love summer time and having a garden. One of my favorites is Zucchini... you can make cakes, cookies, breads, zucchini parmesan, but my favorite easy side dish is to simply saute the zucchini and add a few seasonings. One evening while experimenting with flavors I did this recipe. It was simple but delicious. Enjoy!!

Sauteed Zucchini with Basil and Parmesan Cheese
3 or 4  Zucchini's (depending on size and how many servings you need)
1/2 medium size onion, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic, (about 2 cloves)
4 to 6 leaves fresh basil leaves, chopped (I usually place one on top the other and roll up, and then slice into thin strips, then chop again)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste
Olive Oil

Wash and slice the Zucchini into 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick slices. Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Drizzle with about 2 tablespoons olive oil, add the chopped onions and cook for 2 or 3 minutes and then add the sliced zucchini. Cook over medium heat for about 5 to 7 minutes stirring occasionally, until slightly tender. Add the garlic and basil and cook for 1 to 2 minutes more. Reduce heat to low, add Parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Toss to combine.

Sizzler Toast

I know.. this is a really simple recipe... and most of you probably know it, but I made this blog originally for my I'm posting it. After all, the toast is one of our favorite things at Sizzler... it goes great with most anything from Salads to casseroles... YUMMO!

Di's version of Sizzler Toast

1 loaf Texas Toast, or French Bread slice 1- inch thick (Texas Toast is best)
Parmesan cheese, grated

Butter your bread on the generous side. Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. While skillet is heating, sprinkle about a Tablespoon of grated Parmesan cheese on each slice, and press slightly so the cheese sticks to the butter. Lay slices of bread, cheese side down in hot skillet and grill a minute or two until the cheese is golden brown, flip over on the other side, and grill for a minute so this side gets kind of toasty. Slice in half and enjoy with a salad, casserole, you name it! YUMMM!
For variation you could add a little garlic powder to the butter, and make a garlic Parmesan toast.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Captain Crunch French Toast

I saw them do this to French Toast on one of the episodes of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives, and HAD to give it shot! French Toast has always been a favorite Breakfast of mine since I was little, just ask my Mom and Dad, every family vacation we went on, when going to Breakfast, I didn't even have to look at a menu, I just wanted French Toast. Captain Crunch has been a fav of mine forever too. I thought this turned out quite good!  Use a good heavy bread, like Texas Toast, Brioche, or Thick sliced French Bread, it turns out best thicker sliced. You ought to give it a try too! YUMMO!

Captain Crunch French Toast

Texas Toast or Thick sliced French Bread
2 cups Captain Crunch Cereal (Plain, no crunch berries)
3 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
dash or two of salt

In a blender, whip the eggs, milk, vanilla, sugar, cinnamon and salt until light, fluffy and well blended. In a food processor or ziploc bag, crush the Captain Crunch until it's chunky crumbs.
Place egg mixture into a shallow bowl, wide enough to put your slices of bread in. Place crumbled captain crunch on a plate with sides.
Heat a large skillet or griddle to medium/high heat. Drizzle with a little vegetable oil or spray with a non-stick cooking .
While skillet is heating, dip a slice of bread into the egg mixture, let sit a few minutes, turn so it's well coated on both sides. Then place into captain crunch, slightly pressing down so you get a good coating of cereal on the bread, flip and crumb the other side. Then, place on hot skillet. Cook for a minute or two until golden brown, flip over and cook other side until golden brown.
 Continue cooking your slices of bread until you have the amount of servings you need.
Serve hot,  topped with butter and maple syrup and enjoy!! YUMMMOOO!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Homemade Ice Cream Sandwiches

Sorry it's been a while since I have posted a recipe! I have lots to post, but my hubby has been hogging the computer in the evenings with his online class. But anyway, I can't remember where I first saw the idea for these...but I've been wanting to try them since before the 4th of July. This weekend was perfect. I used my favorite brownie recipe but a boxed mix will work too. And any flavor of Ice cream you want... I used mint chocolate chip because we had just eaten at Olive Garden and had their chocolate mints after dinner... and thought I would use that idea of flavors for this dessert after dinner since I was having company. These were yummo!!!

Homemade Ice Cream Sandwiches

1 (1/2 gallon) carton ice cream, any flavor
For the Brownies:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 (13x9) cookie sheets with parchment paper (leave a little hanging over the short sides, this makes it easier to lift the brownies out of the pan.)

Melt in saucepan:
2 sticks of butter (1 cup)
4 - 1 ounce squares of unsweetened chocolate
Remove from heat and add:
2 cups of sugar
Stir then add:
4 eggs, one at a time, stir after each
Then stir in:
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Then add:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
Stir till well mixed. Spread half of the dough in one parchment lined cookie sheet, spread to cover bottom fo pan, and then do the same with the other cookie sheet. You want your brownies thin... mine were a little under a half inch thick I think, but you could go thinner if you want.
Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or depending on how thin your batter is you just want to bake them until center is set and they brown slightly around the edges and not gooey. Remove from oven and let cool completely.
When brownies are completly cooled, lift out of pan and place upside down on counter or cutting board, peel off parchment paper.
Then, undo the carton of ice cream so all the ice cream is exposed, and slice into about 4 or 5 -1 inch thick slices
 (you might need to let it sit for about 5 minutes to soften, so you can slice through it.) Then place your slices of ice cream over the bottom layer of brownie to cover.
 Then flip the other pan of brownies over on another cookie sheet, and peel off the parchment paper, then place ontop of ice cream so the bottom is on the ice cream (it really doesn't matter which side goes down, but I think the top is prettier this way.)
Slice into desired size of ice cream sandwiches you want, and wrap  each one in sarah wrap and store in freezer. 

These should set up for an hour or two before eating, or the ice cream squishes out the sides.
YUMMO!  I think I will try a chocolate almond ice cream next time... or a strawberry cheesecake ice cream... oh yum!!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

My improved Chicken Alfredo Recipe

I love chicken Alfredo...especially from the Olive Garden. I had read somewhere , I think on a copy cat recipe site,  that the Olive Garden uses a garlic paste rather than minced garlic in their Alfredo sauce. I have roasted Garlic bulbs before for Garlic Mashed potatoes, it seems to give the garlic a sweeter taste. So I thought, why not try that in my Alfredo sauce??? So I did! (See the Video on how to roast a garlic bulb that I posted right before this one.) After it was roasted I squeezed the garlic out onto a small plate and mushed with a fork until I had a paste.  I also had some sun dried tomatoes that were packed in Olive Oil that I needed to use up as well so I mushed them up like I did the garlic, but you don't have to use them if you don't want to. This was yummo! The only thing I would do different is make more sauce... the fettuccine noodles tend to soak up a lot! Also I just noticed that I've never posted my chicken Alfredo recipe.... I can't believe I haven't!! I have just posted my alfredo sauce recipe.... Goodness, I'm a slacker.....

Improved Chicken Alfredo

4 boneless, skinless Chicken breasts
1 package Grill Mates Garlic, Herb and Wine Marinade
1 (1-lb.) box Fettuccine Noodles

For the Alfredo Sauce:
6 Tablespoons butter
1 whole garlic bulb, roasted
2 Tablespoons sundried tomatoes, packed in olive oil (optional)
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
dash of nutmeg
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for Garnishing

Make the Grill Mates Marinade according to the package directions, and pour over chicken that you placed in a Ziploc bag. Zip shut and mush around so the marinade is on all the chicken. Let marinade for at least a half an hour, longer is better... I have even done mine overnight. The longer you marinade the more flavorful your chicken will be.
Next, roast your garlic bulb. See the video I posted, remembering that it roasts at 350 for about 45 minutes, plus you want it to cool so you can handle it. Squeeze out the roasted garlic and mash into a paste. Set aside.

When ready to make your Chicken alfredo, Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt, and your noodles and cook according to package directions.
To make your Alfredo sauce:
Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic paste and the sundried tomatos (if using it, it's optional) to the butter and cook for about 1 minute or until slightly browned. Then whisk in the cream, keep the heat at about medium to medium-low, and bring this to barely a simmer (if this boils too hard, the cream and the butter separate and look curdled) Once its at a low simmer add the salt, pepper, nutmeg and Parmesan cheese. Bring mixture back to a low simmer and continue to cook another 5 to 8 minutes until slightly thickened, stirring often. ( Remember, don't simmer at too high of heat or it will separate)
While sauce and noodles are cooking, heat your grill to medium high heat. Then cook your chicken breasts about 5 to 7 minutes per side (depending on the thickness of them) When done, let sit on plate for about 5 minutes.
When noodles are cooked: drain and add to your thickened alfredo sauce, toss to combine. Then slice your chicken in thin slices and place on top of noodles (you can toss some in to mix up and then place the rest of the chicken on top, I usually slice 2 chicken breasts and toss in with the noodles, then slice the other two and place on top)
Garnish with more Parmesan cheese and serve with breadsticks, or crusty frenchbread and salad. ENJOY!!! YUMMALICIOUS!