March 30, 2010

Tomato Bruschetta

7 Roma (plum) tomatoes, chopped ¼ t salt
3 cloves minced garlic ¼ t ground black pepper
¼ C olive oil, or EVOO
1 french baguette, or sour-dough loaf
2 T balsamic vinegar (my fave is from Costco) 2 C shredded mozzarella cheese
¼ cup fresh basil, stems removed, cut up

In a large bowl combine the Roma tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, basil, salt, and pepper. Allow the mixture to sit in fridge for 12-24 hours and marinate. (If you need it quickly, 10 minutes would be the very minimum, overnight is best)
Cut your bread into slices and arrange on a wire rack set in a cookie sheet (this keeps the bottoms of your bread from going soggy). Brush slices of bread with olive oil, and broil until slightly brown. Then place a layer of mozzarella cheese on bread and broil until just melted.
Place tomato mixture evenly over top of bread, and top with mozzarella cheese. Broil for couple more minutes, until cheese is melted.
These are AMAZING, you won’t be disappointed!

March 21, 2010

Blueberry Muffins with Streusel Topping

2 C flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 T flour
1 1/2 C fresh blueberries
1/2 C butter
3/4 C white sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp lemon zest (lemon juice will work)
1/2 C milk

2 T flour
5 T white sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 T butter, diced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease 12 muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners (which I still spray with PAM).
Combine 2 cups flour, 2 tsp baking powder, and 1/2 tsp salt in medium bowl. In a small bowl sprinkle 1 to 2 tablespoons of flour over blueberries and set aside (keeps from having purple batter)
In a large bowl beat 1/2 cup butter with 3/4 cup sugar until light. Beat in eggs and stir in vanilla and lemon. Fold in dry ingredients alternately with the milk. Fold in blueberries. Fold gently, do not stir. Spoon batter into prepared cups.
Combine 2 tablespoons flour, 5 tablespoons sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a small bowl. Cut in 2 tablespoons butter with a fork until resembles crumbs. Sprinkle over batter in muffin cups.
Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Soft and moist inside, tasty crunch outside. MmmMmm!
I like these served warm and with a little butter, but they are great just plain.

March 18, 2010

Cucumber Melon Punch

1 can white grape juice cocktail
1 crystal light lemonade packet
2 qts water
1 can water
2 cans ice
Sliced lime
Sliced cucumber

Combine all and serve!
Makes just over 2 quarts

March 17, 2010


(Irish mashed potatoes - GREAT with Corned Beef & Cabbage)

6-7 potatoes
1 onion diced
1/2 head cabbage
Half and half
Salt and pepper

Cut potatoes in half and boil them until soft. While they are boiling melt 2-3 tablespoons of butter in skillet. Add the onions and stir until coated. Add cabbage on top of onions and put lid on skillet. Cook 20 minutes or until cabbage is soft.
Drain potatoes and mash. Add onion and cabbage mixture. Serve with butter.
I also like the sauce for the Corned Beef served on the potatoes. It's delish!!

Corned Beef and Cabbage

Served every year on St. Patrick's Day. We'd have it year round if we could :)

1 corned beef brisket (I prefer the ones from Costco)
1 head cabbage sliced
1 small onion
1 orange cut in slices (w/ peel)
Apple juice

Sour Cream
Dijon Mustard
(combine to taste)

Line your oven roasting pan with tinfoil. Place brisket on foil, fat side up. Sprinkle top with packaged pickling spices (should be included with your brisket). Pour apple juice in about 1/4" or so - just so the bottom of the brisket is covered. Place orange slices and onion all around. Pull extra foil over top and put roasting pan lid on. Bake at 250 degrees for about 1 hour per pound of brisket. For last 1 1/2 hours or so, remove the orange slices (and onion slices if you like) and add the sliced cabbage all over and around the brisket.

Remove brisket and slice. Serve with cabbage and sauce. So yummy!
Goes perfectly with Colcannon

March 14, 2010

Hot Fudge Pudding Cake

Holy smokes, this is good. I found the recipe at My Kitchen Cafe, and you can find it here. Or, just keep scrolling!

1 cup sugar
½ cup cocoa powder
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup milk
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1 large egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup boiling water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8-inch square baking pan with cooking spray. Whisk ½ cup sugar with ¼ cup cocoa powder and set aside. Whisk the flour, remaining ½ cup sugar, remaining ¼ cup cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Whisk milk, butter, egg yolk, and vanilla in medium bowl until smooth. Stir milk mixture into flour mixture until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips (the batter will be stiff). Using a rubber spatula, scrape batter into prepared pan and spread into corners. Sprinkle reserved cocoa and sugar mixture evenly over the top. Gently pour boiling water over cocoa. Do not stir. Bake until the top of the cake is cracked, sauce is bubbling and a toothpick inserted into cakey area comes out with moist crumbs attached, about 22-24 minutes. Cool on rack for at least 10 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

March 9, 2010

Broccoli Cheese Soup

I saw this recipe on the My Kitchen Cafe blog. (Click here) The picture is hers, it looked so much better than any picture I could have taken :) I would definitely double this, unless you are cooking for 2! I 1.5 times the recipe and it fed my family of 5 with none left over. 2 adults, and 3 kids that didn't each much! It was yummy, and one of the first soups I have had that used fresh- grated cheese that didn't taste gritty and rough. Very smooth, creamy sauce! I also didn't have any swiss cheese, so I just did all cheddar.

1 can chicken broth (about 1 3/4 cups of broth)
1 small onion, diced (I only used 1/2 onion and felt it was plenty)

1/3 c. flour
1/4 c. butter
Pepper to taste (I used about 1/2 teaspoon)

2 c. milk
1 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese (the sharper the better for flavor - I used sharp cheddar and hopefully next time will have extra sharp cheddar on hand)
1/2 c. shredded swiss cheese
steamed chopped broccoli (the amount of broccoli really boils down to preference - I wanted a lot of broccoli in my soup, so I chopped and steamed approximately 2 1/2 to 3 cups of broccoli florets)

Simmer chicken broth and chopped onion for 15-20 minutes in a covered small saucepan, until onions are soft. Heat milk in microwave for 1-2 minutes. In a separate medium-sized stockpot, melt butter then add flour and pepper. Cook together for a couple of minutes, then whisk in warmed milk. Stir and heat together on medium-high heat until soup starts to thicken. Next add chicken broth and continue to stir until well blended. Add cheeses and stir until smooth. Add steamed broccoli. Serve immediately.

March 8, 2010

Poppyseed Cake & Orange Zest Buttercream

This recipe is from the Sisters' Cafe! The recipe is here. I made cupcakes instead of the bundt cake. If you make the bundt cake, they have a recipe for glaze, so make sure you check it out.

1 yellow cake mix (the kind with pudding)
1 (3.5 oz) box of instant vanilla pudding
1 TB poppyseeds
1/2 cup pineapple or orange juice (I used orange)
1/2 cup oil
1 cup sour cream
4 eggs

Mix yellow cake mix, vanilla pudding and poppyseeds. Add juice, oil, and sour cream and mix. Add 4 eggs one at a time, mix well. Grease and flour a bundt pan. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

*Bake cupcakes for 18-20 min. Makes 24-30 cupcakes.

Orange Zest Buttercream Frosting
I made this up. I just did a buttercream frosting and added the zest from one orange!

1/4 c. butter
2-3 c. powdered sugar
2 tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
zest from one orange

I eyeballed everything, but I think those measurements are about right.

Triple Chocolate Cake & Chocolate Frosting

I've seen this recipe in many cookbooks and baking blogs, and it's amazing. It's supposed to be made as a bundt cake, but I did cupcakes for Jessie's shower.

1 devil's food cake mix
1 4-serving instant chocolate pudding mix
4 large eggs
1 cup sour cream (not low-fat or fat-free)
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Place all ingredients except chocolate chips in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer for 1 minute. Stir down sides. Continue to mix on medium speed for 2-3 minutes. Stir in chocolate chips. Pour batter into greased bundt pan. Bake 45-50 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool 20 minutes. Invert onto serving platter. Dust with powdered sugar.

*Bake cupcakes for 18-20 minutes. Makes 24-30 cupcakes.

Chocolate Frosting:
1/4 c. butter
2 c. powdered sugar
3 tbsp. cocoa
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tbsp. milk

*I had to double the frosting for the cupcakes.

Chocolate Chip Cupcakes & Cream Cheese Frosting

2 eggs
1 1/4 C milk
1 t vanilla
1/2 C oil
1 3/4 C flour
1 (3.4 oz) pkg vanilla instant pudding
2/3 C sugar
2 1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
3/4 c mini chocolate chips

Mix eggs, milk, vanilla, and oil together. Mix flour, pudding mix, sugar, baking powder, and salt together in a separate bowl and add wet ingredients. Add chocolate chips. Bake at 375 degrees for 18 - 20 minutes. Frost and decorate.

Cream Cheese Frosting:

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. butter, softened
3 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tbsp. milk

These are cute to do on St. Patrick's Day using pistachio pudding:

March 6, 2010

Salad Dressing

This is the spring salad dressing from Jessie's baby shower. Delish!

1/4 C Balsamic vinegar
1/4 C Canola oil
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tbsp sugar

Mix everything except the oil together in a food processor. Drizzle the oil in while mixing until well blended. Refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight.
Mix Baby Spring greens and cut up green pears. Add crumbled feta cheese. Pour dressing over just before serving.

Baked Ham Sandwiches

These are the baked ham rolls from Jessie's baby shower. Yummy!

24 Pepperidge Farm Rolls (King Hawaiian Rolls)
1 lb baked deli ham sliced thin
12 oz shredded mozzarella cheese
Dijon or Dijonaiise mustard

3 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 stick of butter
1-2 teaspoons dried minced onion
1 Tbsp poppy seeds

Cut rolls in half and spread bottom half with mustard. (This is much easier if you do not separate the rolls but cut the entire slab of rolls. It's okay if they are not perfectly even.) Place bottom section of rolls on a greased cookie sheet. Add layer of ham and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Replace top of rolls. Melt sauce ingredients in a sauce pan. Pour over rolls. Bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes. Serve immediately.

These are very pretty and are great for showers or as appetizers.

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