Tag Archives: Teaspoon

Butterbeer

19 Dec

I spent five days down in the sun-filled state of Florida with my sister’s family. I made dinner one night. My sweet nieces are obsessed with Harry Potter and told me in so many words that I really must – absolutely must – go to Harry Potter Land at Universal Studios. Someday I would love to do that, but it just wasn’t in the cards for this trip. Sigh. So! Not to be discouraged I decided to bring Harry Potter Land to us! The Three Broomsticks would be proud. Now, I made a version of Butterbeer a year or so ago that was hot and very butterscotchy. Not bad, but so sweet that I could only manage a sip. This one is a soda version and I like it much better. My nieces and nephews also gave it a thumbs up and confirmed that it tastes just like the stuff at Harry Potter Land. You use imitation butter extract – something that I didn’t even knew existed, but can actually be easily found right by all your other extracts in the seasonings section at your local grocer. Go figure.

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Ingredients:

FOR THE BUTTERBEER
chilled cream soda
imitation butter extract

FOR THE FOAM
2 cups heavy cream
6 tablespoons sugar, or splenda for sugar free version
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons imitation butter (if using clarified butter, double the amount to 3 teaspoons, or 1 tablespoon)

To make the butterbeer: Place 1/2 teaspoon of imitation butter in glasses. Pour 12 ounces of cream soda into each glass, over the butter. Lightly stir.
To make the foam: In a large bowl, or the bowl of a standing mixer, whip the heavy cream on medium high speed for 3-4 minutes until it starts to thicken. Add the sugar and continue whipping until very soft peaks begin to form, another 3-4 minutes (if you need to whip more or less, then be sure to do so, the times can vary quite a bit based on environment). Stir in the vanilla and imitation butter, then whip for another 30 seconds or so, until soft peaks form.

Spoon a generous portion of foam on top of each glass of butterbeer, mixing gently, if desired (or spoon the foam into the bottom of the glass and pour the butterbeer over the top). Serve immediately.

Original recipe: http://bakingdom.com/2010/11/butterbeer-oh-yes-friends-butterbeer.html

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Amish Chicken

30 Oct

Amish Chicken – my husband just asked, “What’s Amish about it?” And the answer is…I have no idea. Someone posted the recipe on Facebook, I thought it looked good and decided to try it. Maybe it’s the same way with the Amish – you see them in their horse and buggy, sporting some pretty sweet beards and say to yourself, “Hey, I should try that.” Yeah. Or maybe they just cook really good chicken.

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Ingredients:

6 -8 chicken pieces, cleaned
1 cup flour
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 1/2 cups water

Directions:

Dredge the chicken pieces in the flour and spices and arrange skin side up in a baking dish. Mix the cream and water and pour over the chicken. Bake at 350^F for 1 1/2 hours or until the skin is golden brown.

Italian Meatballs

28 Oct

My neighbor got Mono a couple of weeks ago. I had it the summer after my freshman year of college = no fun. And I didn’t have kids to take care of back then – she has 4. So, I made their family dinner, and asked the kids if there was anything they didn’t like or anything they preferred. There was talk of macaroni and cheese and other kinds of kid favorites, but then their eyes lit up; “Spaghetti and Meatballs!” I love spaghetti – my husband does not. So, whenever I make spaghetti, it is a special treat for me. 🙂 However, I usually just make spaghetti with meat sauce. I have never made meatballs. But they asked specifically for meatballs! It’s always a little scary making something you have never made before with the intention of giving it to someone else. It doesn’t leave much room for error – even though you know that they would never say anything if it tasted horrible. I contemplated just doing my regular meat sauce, but then my conscience would strike and I just didn’t have much choice – I promised meatballs.

I was really pleased with this recipe. The meatballs were like miniature meat loaves, and then of course, there is the ease of the crockpot! Even my husband tried them. 🙂 He’s still not a huge fan of spaghetti, but said the meatballs were pretty good – I take what I can.

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Ingredients:

1 lb ground beef
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl by hand – use your bare hands for best results. Roll meatballs to about the size of a golf ball. Drop raw meatballs into crockpot filled with Marinara Sauce. Cook on high for about 3 hours.

Original recipe found here: http://www.food.com/recipe/authentic-italian-meatballs-92095

Best-Ever Muffins

10 Sep

Today was a day of miracles. Miracle 1: Our car lives! Turns out a wire – a very important wire apparently – had been broken. New alternator, new wire = working car. Huzzah. Miracle 2: My baby took a nap. A real, honest-to-goodness nap. Not 5 minutes, not 2 second, but 3 hours. I got the kitchen cleaned, the floor swept, mopped and vacuumed. Miracle 3: For the first time ever, my 2 year old pooped in the potty. It took a couple of hours of, “Mom, I have to go potty…actually, I’m ok” – pretty much every five minutes. I didn’t think she’d do it. I was so sure it would end up in her panties. And then I heard a little voice from the downstairs bathroom while I fed the baby, “Mom, I’m going to do it myself. I’m going to go poo….Mom! I did it!” I had to check of course and I was so ridiculously proud. It made the six other pee accidents I had to clean up throughout the day totally worth it.

Miracle 4 didn’t even happen to me, but to my sister. They have been in desperate need of a second car for quite some time, but having school loans to pay off, they have been making do and pinching pennies so that they can get their debts taken care of first. With three kids and a pilot husband who sometimes comes home from flights at odd hours, you can imagine that pick ups and drop offs aren’t always convenient or easy for the little ones.. I was just talking to her this morning about how much she would love to have a van, but how impossible that dream seemed. And then my parents came by for dinner tonight and said that my sister’s husband had gotten a call – “Someone has anonymously donated money towards a car for you – a van. The keys are here for you, please come and sign the paperwork and take it home.” My jaw dropped. I don’t think my sister has stopped crying yet. She thought it was my parents, but they were just as surprised to hear the news. We literally have no idea who it was! There are so many things that happen in this world that are terrible and scary, but then someone goes and does something like this, and my faith in humanity is restored. There are wonderful people in this world! Whoever you are – thank you for your generosity. It couldn’t have gone to someone more deserving. I made you some muffins, but since I don’t know who you are, my kids ate them in honor of you. 🙂 I hope they grow up to be as kind.

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Ingredients:

1 3/4 cups flour

3/4 cup sugar

2 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp salt

1 egg

3/4 cup milk

1/3 cup oil

Combine dry ingredients and make a well in the center. Combine egg, milk, and oil; add all at once to dry mixture. Stir until moistened. Fill well greased or paper-lined muffin tins 2/3 full. Bake at 400^F for 20-25 min.

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Sugar Cookie Bars

28 Jun

We had some sweet neighbors bring our family dinner after the baby was born, so I had to (had to) make treats to thank them. Unfortunately, I didn’t give them all away and decided to eat half the pan myself. I have a deep and abiding love for sugar cookies, but I kind of hate to make them – they are a pain. Mix the dough, chill the dough, roll the dough, hurry up and cut out your shapes and re-roll and re-cut…all before the dough gets too warm to work with. And if you aren’t fast enough, you have to re-chill and then start all over again. A lot of work! No good. So I only make them on real special occasions (I will have to do it eventually because I do have a killer recipe – super soft and fluffy…but I’m getting way ahead of myself! you’ll get those on one of those special occasion posts :)). So! Imagine my delight, stumbling upon this awesome recipe that gives you some smashing sugar cookies in super simple bar form. Hopefully I didn’t find it so easy that I make them all the time. Remember that baby bulge I still have to get rid of?

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Cookies:

1 cup butter, room temperature

2 cups sugar

4 eggs

2 tsp vanilla

5 cups flour

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp lemon zest (optional)

Frosting:
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese (1/2 of an 8 oz block) softened
1 tsp vanilla (I used almond extract for half of the frosting)
¼ tsp salt
4 cups powdered sugar
5 Tbsp milk
food coloring (if desired)
Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing after each egg. Add vanilla and mix well. In a separate bowl combine flour, salt, baking soda and stir with a whisk to combine. Add to wet mixture and mix just until combined. Spread on a greased baking sheet (use a 13 x 18 pan). Bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 min, until light golden brown or until a toothpick comes out clean (they won’t look done so do the toothpick test). Cool completely and frost.
For the frosting: Combine butter and cream cheese until smooth and creamy. Add vanilla and salt. Add powdered sugar in 1-2 cup increments until combined, then add milk a little at a time and mix until smooth and spreading consistency. You may not need all the milk! Spread over cooled cookie bars.