Thursday, October 12, 2017

Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies from Pinch of Yum

This recipe has come up on Pinterest and Facebook so I decided to give it a try.  (Actually my daughter tried it) We really liked it! Here's the link to the website  Best Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies
The following was taken directly from the website:

INGREDIENTS

  • 8 tablespoons of salted butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar (I like to use raw cane sugar with a coarser texture)
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour (more as needed – see video)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (but I always add a little extra)
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips (I use a combination of chocolate chips and chocolate chunks)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Microwave the butter for about 40 seconds to just barely melt it. It shouldn’t be hot – but it should be almost entirely in liquid form.
  2. Using a stand mixer or electric beaters, beat the butter with the sugars until creamy. Add the vanilla and the egg; beat on low speed until just incorporated – 10-15 seconds or so (if you beat the egg for too long, the cookies will be stiff).
  3. Add the flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix until crumbles form. Use your hands to press the crumbles together into a dough. It should form one large ball that is easy to handle (right at the stage between “wet” dough and “dry” dough). Add the chocolate chips and incorporate with your hands.
  4. Roll the dough into 12 large balls (or 9 for HUGELY awesome cookies) and place on a cookie sheet. Bake for 9-11 minutes until the cookies look puffy and dry and just barely golden.Warning, friends: DO NOT OVERBAKE. This advice is probably written on every cookie recipe everywhere, but this is essential for keeping the cookies soft. Take them out even if they look like they’re not done yet (see picture in the post). They’ll be pale and puffy.
  5. Let them cool on the pan for a good 30 minutes or so. They will sink down and turn into these dense, buttery, soft cookies that are the best in all the land. These should stay soft for many days if kept in an airtight container. 

NOTES

The 3 most important things about this recipe are 1) melting the butter, 2) adding enough flour, and 3) not baking for too long.
If you find that the dough is wet and it REALLY sticks to your hands, you probably need a little more flour. This is important otherwise you’ll have flat cookies. I’ll usually add a few tablespoons at a time to get it to the right consistency. See video in post for reference. You should be able to roll the balls of dough between your hands without any issues.
One of the keys to achieving the perfect cookie is to ensure the correct amount of flour is used. Ideally, the flour should be weighed. In testing, we found that 6.75 ounces of flour was the correct amount. Without a food scale, don’t pack the flour into measuring cups and always level the flour off.
 

One Pan Sausage and Tortellini from Six Sisters' Stuff



INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound ground sausage
  • 3 cups spaghetti sauce or marinara sauce
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 20 ounces fresh tortellini
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Heat olive oil in a skillet. Add in the sausage, crumbling it into small pieces. Cook until browned well. Drain off any excess grease.
  2. Stir in spaghetti sauce, water, Italian seasoning, and tortellini. Bring mixture to a boil.
  3. Then turn heat to low, cover and simmer for about 8 minutes until tortellini is tender.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese. It will melt in with the warm tortellini pasta.
  5. Optional - you can sprinkle additional cheese on top before serving.

** The first time I made this I didn't really like it, but I decided to try it again.  The second time I made it I used Italian sausage instead of plain sausage, and I used frozen cheese tortellini from WinCo because it was way cheaper than fresh tortellini.  I liked it a lot better the second time and the family ate all the leftovers.  

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Buttermilk Waffles from America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook



Image result for picture of waffles
Makes 6-8 waffles depending on the size of the waffle iron

2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 large eggs, separated
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 3/4 cups buttermilk*
pinch of cream of tartar

After heating the waffle iron whisk together flour, salt and baking soda in a large bowl. In a separate bowl whisk together the egg yolks, butter and then the buttermilk. Beat the egg whites and cream of tartar with an electric mixer on medium high speed til stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes. Make  a well in the center of the dry ingredients, pour the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients and whisk very gently just til incorporated.  A few lumps should remain.  Fold the whipped egg whites into the batter.

*If you don't have buttermilk you can add 2 tablespoons of white vinegar or lemon juice to the 1 3/4 c milk and let it sit for about 5 minutes.

The batter should be lumpy. If you overmix the batter you will have heavy dense waffles.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Sweet Pork Chimichangas from Six Sisters' Stuff

Ingredients
  • 1 (2-3 pound) pork roast*
  • 2 cups chunky salsa**
  • 1 (12 ounce) can Dr. Pepper**
  • 2 cups brown sugar**
  • 8 flour tortillas
  • 1 (16 ounce) can refried beans
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • nonstick cooking spray
* I shop for pork labeled carnitas or  pork shoulder butt
(**I cut the sauce ingredients in half.  It's still plenty of sauce.)
Instructions
  1. Place pork roast in slow cooker and fill halfway with water. Cook 4 hours on high.
  2. Drain water, cut pork into thirds, mix salsa, Dr. Pepper and brown sugar together, pour on top of pork and cook for 4 more hours on low.
  3. Drain liquid and shred pork. Save some liquid and mix it back in with the pork to keep it moist.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  5. Evenly divide pork, refried beans and cheese between 8 tortillas.
  6. Fold up each tortilla into a rectangular packet around the filling and place folded side down in a 9x13-inch baking dish.
  7. Spray the tops of the chimichangas generously with nonstick cooking spray.
  8. Place in preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  9. Remove from oven, turn over each chimichanga and return to the oven to cook for an additional 15 minutes. 

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Chicken Broccoli Alfredo

This recipe comes from the following website
http://juliasalbum.com/2015/09/chicken-broccoli-alfredo-recipe/


Ingredients
·         10 ounces broccoli
·         8 ounces penne pasta 
·         1 tablespoon butter 
·         1 tablespoon olive oil
·         1.5 pound chicken breast (1 large chicken breast)
·         4 garlic cloves, minced
·         1 cup heavy cream
·         1 cup milk
·         1 and 1/4 cups mozzarella cheese or monterey jack cheese, shredded
·         salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
1.      Cook broccoli in boiling water for 5 minutes, drain well. Cut into small florets.*
2.      Cook pasta al dente, drain.
3.      In a large skillet heat olive oil and butter on medium-high heat (until hot but not smoking) and saute chicken breast (seasoned generously with salt and pepper on both sides) for about 5 minutes on each side. Remove the skillet from heat, cover with the lid, and let the chicken rest, off heat, covered, until chicken is no longer pink in the center and cooked through. Remove chicken from the pan. Cut chicken into bite-size pieces.
4.      Add minced garlic to the same skillet and cook it in chicken juices and oil remaining in the pan, scraping up the chicken bits from the bottom of the pan, on medium heat for about 30 seconds until garlic is fragrant, making sure to avoid burning. Add cooked and sliced broccoli and mix in with garlic. Remove from the pan.
5.      To make the creamy sauce, in the same skillet heat up 1 cup of heavy cream until it boils. Immediately add the cheese and stir until melted and nice and creamy. Reduce heat to medium-low, and slowly, in small portions, add milk, constantly stirring, simmering, until nice and creamy consistency is reached.
6.      Add cooked pasta to the creamy sauce, then add broccoli. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Top with sliced, cooked chicken.

*I found that as the broccoli sat after it was boiled, it continued to cook and became too soft.  Next time I would either boil it for less time and/or place it in ice water after draining it to stop it from continuing to cook.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Lemonies from Mel's Kitchen Cafe

Lemony Lemon Brownie Bites


These taste just like lemon bars, but are way easier to make!


INGREDIENTS
    Lemon Batter:
  • 1 cup (5 ounces/142 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup (5.5 ounces/155 grams) sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest (from 1 large lemon)
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Lemon Glaze:
  • 3/4 cup (2.75 ounces/75 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
DIRECTIONS
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8X8-inch aluminum baking pan with parchment so that it hangs over two of the edges (to lift out the bars later - alternately, you can just grease the pan really well and slice them in the pan) and lightly coat the pan and parchment with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and lemon zest.
  3. In a separate bowl or in a large liquid measuring cup, whisk together the butter, eggs and egg yolk, lemon juice and vanilla.
  4. Stir the wet ingredients into the flour mixture and mix until combined.
  5. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan.
  6. Bake for 18-20 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs (the top of the bars should spring back lightly when gently pressed). Don't over bake or they might be dry.
  7. For the glaze, whisk together the powdered sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest until smooth and combined.
  8. After the bars have cooled completely in the pan, drizzle the glaze over the top (since the glaze layer is thin, it helps to pour it all across the bars instead of in one puddle before spreading) and use an offset spatula or knife to spread evenly over the bars.
  9. Place the bars in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours to let the glaze set before lifting them from the pan (using the parchment overhang) and cutting into small squares. These taste best chilled, in my opinion, but can be served at room temperature also.

Recipe Source: adapted from Bakerella (cut down the butter, added weight measurements, used an extra egg yolk for super moistness, cut the glaze in half, etc)


Thursday, December 15, 2016

Chocolate Covered Cinnamon Bear Popcorn from Our Best Bites




Ingredients
1.    16 cups popped popcorn (about 2 bags microwave popcorn)
2.    1 cup butter
3.    1/3 cup Karo syrup
4.    2 cups Red Hot candies
5.    1/2 teaspoon cinnamon oil (more or less to taste)
6.    1 cup chocolate chips
7.    1 tablespoon shortening
Instructions
1.    Place the popcorn in a very large, heat-safe bowl and set aside.
2.    Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with aluminum foil and grease or spray with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
3.    In a medium saucepan, combine butter, Karo syrup, and Red Hots. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring very frequently, and then reduce heat to medium-low and boil for 5 minutes. Stir in the cinnamon oil and then pour over the popcorn, stirring with wooden spoons to evenly coat the popcorn in the candy mixture.
4.    Divide the popcorn evenly between the two baking sheets and spread in a single layer over each baking sheet. Bake for 30-35 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
5.    In a microwave-safe jar or measuring cup, add the chocolate chips and the shortening. Heat for 30 seconds at a time, stirring each time, until the chocolate is smooth and liquidy. Using a fork, drizzle the chocolate over the popcorn and allow to harden. Break into pieces and serve or divide into bags to deliver as gifts.


*My own notes after trying their recipe. 
         1. I bought my red hots at Wal Mart. They looked a little pink instead of red.  I know WinCo has red hots in their bulk section and they look more red than the ones I had.  I didn't have much time the day I went to get supplies and Wal Mart was closer than WinCo.
        2.  Cinnamon oil- next time I will buy 2 pkgs of cinnamon oil.  Those little bottles don't have much in them.  I like more cinnamon flavor than the 1/2 tsp called for in the recipe.  Would have been nice to add a little more to each batch.  
       3.  I pop the popcorn on the stove top instead of buying microwave popcorn,  I think it tastes better and it's cheaper.  
       4.  Once I put the popcorn in the oven the cinnamon syrup tends to pool underneath the popcorn.  I stirred the popcorn a couple of times in the oven to get the syrup all over the popcorn and I did the same once it came out of the oven.  No sense in leaving all that syrup on the foil.  
       5.  Once the cinnamon oil is added to the syrup you might want to just lean back away from the stove a little.  Stirring in the oil tends to create this puff of steam that's pretty intense if you breathe it in right away.  

Monday, May 30, 2016

Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3/4 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup shortening
1 egg
1 cup mashed bananas (about 3 bananas)
1 3/4 cup quick oats
1 pkg chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 °.   In a bowl mix together the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, nutmeg and cinnamon.  In the bowl of a stand mixer add 1 beaten egg and the bananas and mix well.  Add shortening and mix together.  Add the dry ingredients (flour, sugar,salt, baking soda, nutmeg and cinnamon) and mix.  Add quick oats and chocolate chips.  Scoop out cooking onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for about 11 min.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Snickerdoodles from Sis Sisters' Stuff

Ingredients
Dough:
  • 3 1⁄2 cups flour
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks), room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1⁄4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
Topping:
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and cream of tartar. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the eggs, milk and vanilla. Mix well. Add the wet ingredients in with the dry ingredients and mix until everything is incorporated.
  4. In another small bowl, mix together cinnamon and sugar for the topping.
  5. Form the dough into 1 inch balls and roll in the cinnamon/sugar mixture. Place dough ball on a greased baking sheet and flatten (I used the bottom of a glass to lightly flatten my cookies).
  6. Sprinkle the tops of the cookies with additional cinnamon/sugar mixture, then bake for 7-8 minutes. Do not overbake these.
  7. Remove from oven and let cool on the cookie sheet for 1-2 minutes, then move to a wire rack to cool.
*I added extra flour to the dough to make them a little thicker- around 1/4-1/2 cup.  Bake one cookie to test it and see if you like how it baked. 

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Chocolate Chip Cookies from Lil Luna

Here is the link to go to the website http://lilluna.com/the-best-chocolate-chip-cookies-recipe/

Here is the recipe:
The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe
Ingredients:

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup sugar, softened
  • ½ cup butter
  • ½ cup oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 cups milk chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Cream butter, oil and sugars. Add eggs and beat until fluffy.
  2. Add remaining ingredients.
  3. Bake at 350 for 7-8 minutes.

*Next time I make these I would add some extra flour  to make them a little thicker as well as some cinnamon.

*I made my cookies 1.5 oz each and they took a little longer to bake- around 9½ mintues.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Baked Sweet Pork Chimichangas

This is from Six Sisters' Stuff

*When I made this there was too much sauce. Next time I would cut the sauce ingredients (Dr. Pepper, salsa and brown sugar) in half.
*Also some of my kids didn't like the refried beans.  Next  I will make some with refried beans and some without.
 
 Main Dish
  
  
  
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