Archive | March, 2014

Orange Sunrise Pancakes

31 Mar

While I love a traditional buttermilk pancake, it is always nice to throw a little variation in there. These pancakes make me feel like I’m eating breakfast at a nice little B&B…I have to close my eyes and ignore the milk spilling and cries of, “She took my seat!!!” but close enough. 🙂

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Ingredients:

Pancakes:

2 large eggs

2 cups buttermilk or soured milk

2 Tbsp butter, melted

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/4 cup orange juice

1 tsp orange zest

1/2 tsp salt

2 Tbsp brown sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp vanilla

2 1/2 cups flour

Combine wet ingredients then add dry, Mix until combined. Pour batter onto skillet set at 325^F and cook each side until golden.

Berry Compote:

2 cups of frozen or fresh berry of choice (I used a mixed berry frozen pack)
Juice of 3 limes
2 cups sugar

Combine everything in a bowl to coat, and then heat over a medium flame until the berries liquify and if you stir a spoon through it, you can see the bottom of the pan for a beat. Basically, it should look kind of syrupy. Serve warm over pancakes.

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Key Lime Bars

22 Mar

Spring has sprung, and so has my craving for all things citrus!!! Take a step out of the traditional lemon-bar box and throw in a little key-lime twist. 🙂 The crust on these almost makes me more happy than the filling – almost. Yummy.

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Ingredients:

Crust –

1 cup flour

1/3 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup pecans, chopped finely

1/4 cup flaked coconut

1/3 cup butter, melted

Filling –

2 eggs, slightly beaten

1 cup sugar

2 tsp key lime zest

1/4 cup key lime juice

1/4 tsp baking powder

Preheat oven to 350^F. Lightly butter and 8×8 baking pan.

For crust: Sift together flour and powdered sugar. Stir in pecans and coconut. Add butter. Press lightly in pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until lightly browned.

While crust is baking, beat together eggs, sugar, zest, lime juice, and baking powder. Pour mixture over baked crust. Bake 13-17 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned and center is set. Cool completely. Cut into squares and dust with powdered sugar.

 

French Toast Rolls

20 Mar

Soccer has started. This means that I will be making breakfast for dinner many, many, many times during the next couple of months. Here is an awesome variation of french toast! My kids, of course, still had to add syrup, but the filling was good enough for me. Get creative with what you stuff with. 🙂 I used different combos: raspberries and cream cheese, Nutella and raspberries, and Nutella and cream cheese. My favorite was the Nutella and cream cheese!

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Ingredients

 

  • 8 slices white sandwich bread
  • softened cream cheese, diced raspberries, Nutella (or whatever fits your fancy! – bananas, strawberries, peaches…)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 heaping teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • butter, for greasing the pan

 

  1. Cut the crust from each slice of bread and flatten it out with a rolling pin.
  2. Place about 1-2 teaspoons of your chosen filling 1 inch from one end of the bread in a strip. Roll the bread up tightly and repeat with the remaining pieces of bread.
  3. In a shallow bowl whisk the eggs and milk until well combined.
  4. In a separate shallow bowl mix the sugar with the cinnamon.
  5. Heat a skillet set over medium heat and melt a tablespoon of butter.
  6. Dip each bread roll in the egg mixture coating well and then place them in the pan seam side down. Cook in batches until golden brown, turning them to cook and brown on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Add butter to the pan as needed.
  7. Add cooked rolls immediately from the pan to the cinnamon sugar and roll until completely covered in sugar.

 

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Original recipe: http://www.the-girl-who-ate-everything.com/2013/05/french-toast-roll-ups.html

 

Snickers Ice Cream Cake

18 Mar

I should be posting about the fabulously Irish dinner we had tonight, but I don’t have the pictures uploaded yet, so instead you get the equally fabulous ice cream cake we made for my husband’s birthday. Holy crap this is a rich cake! Very, very tasty and it gets an A++ for presentation. In all honesty, I think next time I will substitute the peanut butter ice cream for plain vanilla. Not that I didn’t like it, it’s just that I couldn’t even finish an entire slice because of the richness. I was done about half way through. A little less sweet, and I could have eaten half the cake – so maybe it’s a good thing I was forced into moderation. 🙂 But, keep the vanilla ice cream option in mind if you like to tone things down a little.

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Ingredients

1 box brownie mix, plus ingredients required on box
1/4 cup milk
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups peanut butter
8 oz Cool Whip, thawed
1 20 oz bottle chocolate sundae syrup
1 20 oz bottle caramel sundae syrup
1 11.5 oz bag mini snickers, chopped, divided into three groups

Instructions

NOTE: An 8-inch springform pan is best for this recipe so that you can easily remove the cake once it’s been assembled. If you do not have a springform pan, line your pan with clear wrap before adding your parchment paper and cake board. You can use the clear warp to lift your cake out of the pan once it’s assembled and frozen.
Brownies:
1. Make brownie dough according to instructions on back of box.
2. Grease two 8-inch pans (preferable springform pans, see above) and line the bottoms with parchment paper to allow for easy removal. Bake at temperature on box, reducing baking time to about 20 minutes (You can also bake 1 big brownie – which would cook for the normal time – and cut it in half, but cutting a brownie in half isn’t super easy).
3. When brownies are done baking, allow to completely cool.
Ice Cream:
1. Combine milk, cream cheese, sugar and peanut butter together in the bowl of a stand mixer, or with a hand mixer. Mix until completely combined.
2. Fold in the cool whip.
Assembling it all:
1. Line the sides of an 8-inch springform pan with parchment paper. The parchment paper should stick up above the top edge of the pan, since the cake will probably be a little taller than your pan. If you want, put a cardboard cake circle in the bottom of the pan.
NOTE: You should be using the same 8-inch pan you used for the brownies. Not all 8-inch pans are exactly the same size. Your brownie needs to fit in this pan.
2. Put the first brownie layer in the bottom of your pan.
3. Spread 1/2 cup caramel sauce and 1/2 cup chocolate sauce over the brownie. Top with first group of chopped snickers.
4. Top with half of the peanut butter ice cream.
5. Add second brownie to the pan, on top of the ice cream.
6. Again cover with 1/2 cup caramel sauce and 1/2 cup chocolate sauce. Top with second group of chopped snickers.
7. Top with remaining peanut butter ice cream.
8. Allow ice cream cake to freeze completely.
9. When frozen, remove from springform pan and remove parchment paper from sides.
10. Top with additional caramel sauce and chocolate sauce, allowing it to drizzle down the sides.
11. Cover with remaining chopped snickers and a little more caramel and chocolate sauce.

 

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Original recipe: http://www.lifeloveandsugar.com/2013/05/28/snickers-peanut-butter-brownie-ice-cream-cake/

 

 

Candy Apple Pie

15 Mar

Happy Pi Day! I had a friend suggest that since this month is 3/14, it should really technically be Pi Month…I do not disagreed.

My husband’s work decided to celebrate Pi Day with, well, a pie party – naturally. Everyone was supposed to bring a pie to share. He sent me a text: “I want to win the ‘this is not a competition’ competition.” Challenge accepted!!! After the verdict was in, I asked how we fared compared to the other pies and he declared ours the unofficial winner, because it was the only one that people kept coming up for seconds of. I actually haven’t even tasted this pie because, even though I requested that he save me a piece, all that came home was an empty pie tin! But, there are three good reasons why I know it must taste pretty darn good. One: It smelled incredible while baking. Two: Mine was the only pie to be completely devoured. Three: My husband ate an entire slice (this is the crowning glory because he doesn’t really like pie in general, and I have never seen him voluntarily eat apple pie). Sounds like a winner to me. Hopefully I have an excuse to make it again soon because I would really like to test my theory. 😉

**UPDATE**

I can now add one more reason to why I know this pie tastes good. Four: I got to taste it! 🙂 I actually made two  pies, one for Hubby’s work, and one for my sweet neighbor who’s family has had a rough week. I mentioned to her that I hoped it tasted good since it was a new recipe, so, when she returned my pie tin today, she included a slice for me to taste-test. Better late than never! And now I know for a fact that this pie is delicious. It is a caramel candied apple. Yum!!

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Ingredients:

Crust:
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup caramel ice cream topping
1 cup chopped pecans

Apple Filling:
5 Granny Smith apples (peeled, cored, sliced very thin) *Or any firm apple that holds up well during baking (I used Honeycrisp)
5 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Cream Cheese Topping:

8 oz. cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar
Topping:
3/4 cup heavy cream, whipped
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup caramel ice cream topping
1/4 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the crumbs, sugar, cinnamon and melted butter. Mix well and press into a 10-inch pie plate and up the sides. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes until golden in color. Remove pie shell from oven and cool completely. Pour caramel into pie shell and sprinkle with 1 cup of chopped pecans. Refrigerate pie shell while making apple filling.

3. In a large (12-inch) skilet over medium heat, melt butter and add brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Stir with a wooden spoon. Add apples and stir. Cook over medium to medium-high heat for 15 to 20 minutes until apples are softened and tender. Let cool for 10 minutes and pour into pie shell. Reduce oven to 350 degrees F.

4. In a medium bowl, using a hand-held mixer on low speed, combine cream cheese and sugar for about 1 minute until smooth. Add egg, lemon juice and vanilla and beat for 1 minute or until fully blended. Pour over apple filling in pie shell. Bake for 30 minutes until an inserted knife comes out clean. Remove pie from oven and let cool. Refrigerate for 4 hours. Let stand outside the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

5. Top with whipped cream, caramel and pecans, and swirl with a knife. Slice and serve.

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Original recipe: http://www.thekitchn.com/-best-pie-bakeoff-2008-entry-1-10-69632

Chicken Enchiladas with White Sauce

11 Mar

I was ridiculously productive today. I cleaned the kitchen, tidied the family room, managed to keep my room and the girls’ room clean, washed 6 loads of laundry, folded and put away four of those loads (this is a huge feat for me…usually they sit all week and haunt me), I vacuumed and did the dishes…the one thing I forgot to do was get dressed.

I love enchiladas, but I have never been a super huge fan of the recipes that call for cream of chicken soup. They are all right, but they don’t taste very authentic. I finally found a winner! Sigh of relief. 🙂

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Ingredients:

10 soft taco shells or tortillas
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
3 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. flour
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup sour cream
1 (4 oz) can diced green chillies or enchilada sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×13 pan. Mix chicken and 1 cup cheese. Roll up in tortillas and place in pan. In a sauce pan, melt butter, stir in flour and cook 1 minute. Add broth and whisk until smooth. Heat over medium heat until thick and bubbly. Stir in sour cream and chilies. Do not bring to boil, you don’t want curdled sour cream. Pour over enchiladas and top with remaining cheese. Bake 22 min and then under high broil for 3 min to brown the cheese.

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Creamy Chicken Alfredo Lasagna

4 Mar

This morning, I was was pretty darn sure that my daughter had appendicitis. Google has made me an excellent judge of medical conditions. Her symptoms matched everything – pain in the abdomen in a specific local – typically starting at the belly-button, decreased appetite, fever, increased pain when walking. Appendicitis! Turns out…she has strep. Yes, of course. Strep…which involves the throat…not the abdomen. I still have no idea how this happened. The one thing that made me feel like a not-quite-so-crazy-mommy was that the doctor did test her for appendicitis. Everything pointed to that!!! Everything, except the fact that she could jump. That was the deal breaker. The funny thing is that he checked her throat and said it was a little red then asked her if it hurt. “No.” No? How does your belly button hurt but not your throat when you have strep? I am at a loss. But a grateful loss. I’d much rather go pick up an antibiotic at the local pharmacy than run my seven year old down to the hospital for surgery. The only downside of the situation is that I have to come to terms with the fact that I do not have a future diagnosing ailments with my degree from Google and WebMD.

Here’s something useful I got from the internet: Talk about fancy lasagna! This was really tasty and very simple to put together…and it has sun-dried tomatoes!!! Anything with sun-dried tomatoes is a winner in my book. Except maybe sun-dried tomato ice cream (you laugh, but I bet someone out there has tried to pull that off). Although I really like it a lot, it was a little heavy on the cream cheese for me. Next time, I think I’ll try it with my Lower-Fat Alfredo sauce and see which one I like better.

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Ingredients:

2 cups shredded cooked chicken breasts
1 can (14 oz.) artichoke hearts, drained, chopped
1 pkg. (8 oz.) KRAFT Shredded Mozzarella Cheese with a TOUCH OF PHILADELPHIA, divided
1/2 cup KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese
1/2 cup chopped drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
2 pkg. (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup milk
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 cup tightly packed fresh basil, chopped, divided
12 lasagna noodles, cooked

Directions:

HEAT oven to 350°F.
COMBINE chicken, artichokes, 1 cup mozzarella, Parmesan and tomatoes. Beat cream cheese, milk and garlic powder with mixer until well blended; stir in 2 Tbsp. basil. Mix half with the chicken mixture.
SPREAD half the remaining cream cheese mixture onto bottom of 13×9-inch baking dish; cover with 3 noodles and 1/3 of the chicken mixture. Repeat layers of noodles and chicken mixture twice. Top with remaining noodles, cream cheese mixture and mozzarella; cover.
BAKE 25 min. or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining basil. Let stand 5 min. before cutting to serve.

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