Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Kristen Ashley's Milky Way Cake

I found this cake on Kristen Ashley's website, and it's hard to turn down a candy bar filled cake.  Although it didn't taste exactly like Milky Ways, this was such a good cake.  The boys and I gave it a perfect 10, and Aaron gave it a 6, because we all know how he feels about cake.  This is buttery, flavorful, and has a texture similar to really moist carrot cake.  I followed the recipe for the cake exactly, but didn't use nearly the amount of powdered sugar that the recipe called for.  The recipe says 1 1/2 boxes of powdered sugar, and I used 3/4-1 c of powdered sugar.

Each serving was only 313 calories the way I made it, when cut into 24 pieces.  This is good, easy, and worth making.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Michael Symon's Pork Pie

This recipe was from Michael Symon's Carnivore cookbook, and it was a fun, different meal, but I would make some changes next time I make it.  I loved the flavor of the filling, but didn't love that it wasn't super juicy, and we all would've liked it better had it been in a pocket/empanada form.  This received an 8 from all of us, and I'll share the filling with you, but I would recommend using this idea for the hand pockets, and adding a little broth and flour to the filling to give it more juice.  Each serving was 321 calories, for 1/8 of the pie.

4 oz bacon, chopped
1 lb ground pork
salt and pepper
1/2 c chopped celery
1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 small potatoes, chopped
1/4 c chopped celery leaves
1/4 c chopped fresh parsley, chopped
1 t savory
pinch of cinnamon
pinch of ground cloves
Pie dough for 1 double crust pie
1 egg beaten with 1 T milk

Preheat the oven to 400.  Cook the bacon until crisp in a large dutch oven.  Remove the bacon from the pot and set aside.  Add the pork, salt and pepper and brown the pork.  Remove the pork from the pot and place with the bacon.  Add the celery, onions, and garlic and cook for five minutes.  Deglaze the pot with 1/2 c water, then add in the pork, bacon, potatoes, and herbs and seasonings.  Simmer for 20 minutes.
Roll out the pie dough and cover a pie plate, pricking the bottom with a fork all over.  Place the meat mixture in the pan, then top with the other pie dough.  Brush the top with the egg mixture, sprinkle with salt, and then poke holes in the top to vent.  Bake for at least 45 minutes until crusts are golden brown.  Cool and then serve.

Friday, September 26, 2014

The Border Cookbook's Joe's Breakfast Nachos

So this is just migas, really, and I have posted at least one great recipe for migas here, but if it's possible, this one was even easier, and still tasted delicious, so I wanted to feature it.  This received a 9 from all of us.  Each serving was 620 calories, but they were large, and very filling.  Here's what I did:

1/2 lb chorizo
1 onion, chopped
1 T butter
salt to tast
3 eggs
1 T water
2 oz salted tortilla chips
8 oz grated cheese
1 small tomato, chopped

Preheat oven to 350.
Saute the chorizo over medium heat.  Remove the chorizo, and add the onion.  Cook until softened.  Place the butter in an 8x8 baking dish, and melt it in the oven.  Mix the eggs and water together, then add the chorizo and eggs to the pan with the onions.  Cook for a minute or two, then spread the egg mixture in the warmed baking dish.  Top the eggs with the tortilla chips.  Sprinkle with the cheese.  Cook for 5-8 minutes, then top with the tomato and serve immediately.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Flour's Homemade Oreos

Yum!  As usual, we loved Flour's recipe.  Everyone gave these a 9, because although they were awesome, we have had better cookies from Flour, like the double chocolate cookies we loved.  Anyway, these aren't very difficult, and they make a darn good cookie :).  Each sandwich cookie was 165 calories, so high, but they are really delicious.

1 c unsalted butter, melted
3/4 c sugar
1 t vanilla
1 c semisweet chocolate chips, melted
1 egg
1 1/2 c flour-2 c flour
3/4 c cocoa powder
1/2 t salt
1/2 t baking soda

1/2 c unsalted butter, softened
1 2/3 c powdered sugar
1 t vanilla
1 T milk
pinch of salt

Whisk together the butter and sugar.  Whisk in the vanilla and chocolate.  Add the egg and whisk until thoroughly combined.
In another bowl, stir together the flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda until well mixed.  Fold the flour mixture into the chocolate mixture.  It should be the texture of play-doh.  (I had to add more flour to get this texture, about another 1/4 cup)  Let the dough sit at room temperature for about 1 hour to firm up.
Roll the dough in parchment paper, and roll to make a 2 1/2 inch in diameter log.  Refrigerate for at least 2 hour, until firm, rolling every so often to stop one side being squared off.
Preheat oven to 325.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Cut the dough into 1/4 inch slices.  Bake for 16-25 minutes, checking them frequently after 16 minutes.  (Mine went for about 19)  They should be firm to the touch.  Allow them to cool, then frost and make sandwiches.

Beat the butter for about a minute.  Add in the vanilla and powdered sugar and beat until smooth.  Add in the milk and salt, then fill the cookies.  Serve.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Tucson Carne Seca, or Machaca from the Border Cookbook

This was such an interesting recipe for us, we don't usually have machaca, which is the name by which I know this kind of meat, but it was fun to have different Mexican meat.  We had it on our tostadas, and we also had machaca breakfast burritos, both of which turned out great.  As usual, I am always looking to use my crockpot rather than my oven, so I made some changes to the recipe.  Here's what I did:

1 1/2 lb beef chuck roast
1 1/2 T vinegar (I used cider)
1/2 T salt
1 t pepper
5 sliced garlic cloves
1/2 T New Mexican chili powder
4 c water
Juice of 1 lemon

1/2 T New Mexican chili powder
1/2 t salt
1/2 t pepper

1 T oil
1/2 onion, chopped
2 jalapenos, chopped
1 small tomato, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 t dried oregano
salt to taste

In a crockpot, combine all the first ingredients up to the lemon.  Don't add the lemon.  Cook for at least 10 hours, could be longer.  Let the meat sit in the crock, not cooking, for 30 minutes,  Strain the cooking liquid, and reserve 1 cup.
Preheat the oven to 275.  Shred the meat, then put it in a pot and use the 1 cup reserved cooking liquid and simmer until the liquid is absorbed.  Pour the lemon (or lime) juice over the meat and toss together.  Transfer the meat to a cookie sheet, trying to only make one even layer.  Mix the chili powder, salt and pepper together, then sprinkle half of it over the meat.  Cook the meat for 20 minutes, stir it well, then add more of the seasoning blend.  Cook an additional 40 minutes, until browned and dry.  In a food processor or blender, puree the meat until it resembles fine threads.  Refrigerate here for later use, or continue on with the recipe.
Warm the oil over medium heat, then add the onion and jalapeno and sautee.  Stir in the tomatoes, garlic and oregano, then cook for a few minutes.  Add the meat, and stir until all liquid is evaporated.  Add salt and more lime as desired.  Serve.

This can be scrambled with eggs, or just served as desired, or used to make burritos or taquitos.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Joann Fluke's Chocolate Highlander Bars

So this was one of the recipes from the Joanne Fluke books, and we enjoyed these quite a bit.  I was actually surprised by how they turned out, I expected them to be a shortbread base with kind of a creamy chocolate topping, but these were brownies with a shortbread base.  I enjoyed how well these stayed together, and how moist they are.  We all would've appreciated more chocolate flavor, but over all these were great. The calories, for 1/24 of the total, were 320 calories, so high, but still yummy :).

Chocolate Highlander Cookie Bars
Preheat oven to 350.
1 c softened butter
½ c powdered sugar
¼ t salt
2 c flour
4 beaten eggs
1 c melted butter, cooled
1 c sugar
1 t baking powder
¼ t salt
½ c flour
2 ½ c chocolate chips, melted

1.      Cream butter and powdered sugar and salt.  Add flour and mix well.  Pat it out in a greased 9x13 pan.  Bake at 350 for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven.
2.      Mix eggs with melted butter and sugar.  Add dry ingredients and mix well.  Add melted chocolate chips to the dough.

3.      Pour over shortbread dough and cook for at least 30 more minutes, then remove from oven.   Let cool completely then cut into bars.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Michael Symon's Marinated Chicken Tenders and Feta and Cucumber Salad

So this was a hit at our house.  I didn't like either of these recipes as well by themselves, but together these were awesome.  I didn't just come up with this pairing on my own, Michael Symon made this suggestion, and I'm so glad I followed it.  We made some changes to the chicken, so I will post what I did.  This is a 30 minute dinner, and Owen, Aaron and I all gave it a 9, while Noah gave it an 8 because it was too spicy for him.

The calories for this are super duper low, for the serving pictured above, the calories are only 275, and that just makes life easy :).  

Marinated Chicken Tenders

1 1/4 lb chicken tenders
1 c Greek yogurt
3 garlic cloves, minced
Grated zest and juice of 1 tangelo
1 T coriander
2 t cumin
2 t paprika
2 t chipotle powder (here's where the spice is, cut back if you want a little less spice)
1 c chopped parsley

Rinse, dry and salt the chicken thoroughly.  
In a gallon bag, mix together all the rest of the ingredients, salting more if desired.  Throw in the chicken, and shake it/mix it well to distribute the ingredients.  Marinate for about 4 hours.
Spray a large skillet with non-stick spray (I used olive oil spray), remove the chicken from the marinade, and cook for about 3 minutes per side.  Serve with the cucumber feta salad.

Cucumber Feta Salad

3 cucumbers
1 garlic clove, minced
1 shallot, minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
2 T fresh oregano leaves
Grated zest and juice of 2 lemons
1/4 c olive oil
6 oz crumbled feta cheese

Slice the cucumbers as thinly as possible (wishing for a mandoline here :)).  Toss the cucumbers with a large amount of salt and let them sit in a colander.  (I underdid the salt, don't make the same mistake :))
Whisk together the garlic, shallot, jalapeno, oregano, salt, lemon zest and juice, and then add in the olive oil.  Drain off and discard any water that the cucumbers have released.  Add the dressing and toss to combines.  Just before serving, add the feta.  Serve with the chicken.