Friday, October 19, 2012

Mushroom-Ricota Tart

Mushroom Ricotta Tart
1c flour
pinch salt
1/2tsp sugar
Whisk together.
1/2c cold margarine
Cut into dough until it looks like wet-ish(yes, that is a word!) sand. Add in 1tsp of cold water at a time until you can form a ball. You do not want it to be wet. Roll into a ball and cover with plastic wrap. Place in fridge while prepping the rest.

16oz mushrooms (whatever you like), sliced
1/2tsp red pepper flake
1/8c onion, chopped
2 garlic, chopped
salt and pepper
Saute onion and garlic until soft. Add in red pepper, mushrooms, salt and pepper. Turn heat to high and cook until mushrooms are soft. Set aside. Sprinkle counter with parmesan cheese. Roll out dough until about 1/4' thick. Place on cookie sheet.

1c ricotta cheese
1/3c parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
1 egg yolk
Mix together and spread to about 1/2" from the edge of crust. Top with mushroom mixture. Fold edges over. Mix 2tsp evaporated milk with 1 egg yolk and brush along edge of crust. Bake at 425 for 10 minutes. Turn heat down to 400 and cook for 15 more minutes.

This one is a little involved, but oh so worth it!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Carrot Cake

 Yum! I have a pregnant friend who was craving carrot cake. I looked through a bunch of recipes online and decided on Alton Brown's. I changed a couple of things, like always. I think it turned out pretty good.

Carrot Cake
2 1/2c flour
1 tsp baking powder
1tsp baking soda
1/2tsp salt
1/4tsp each; cinnamon, nutmeg
Whisk these together and add
3c grated carrots
Set this aside.
1 1/3c sugar
1/4c brown sugar
3 eggs
3/4c vanilla yogurt
Beat these together in mixer while drizzling 3/4c oil
Combine the two mixtures until just incorporated. Grease and flour a cake pan, either a round or a 9x13. Pour batter in and bake for 45 minutes at 350. Turn the heat down to 325 and bake for another 15 minutes. Check after 10 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes in pan, then turn out onto cooling rack and cool completely. Ice with cream cheese frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting
8oz cream cheese, room temp
1/4c margarine, room temp
 Beat these until combined.
1tsp vanilla
Beat again
2c powdered sugar
Add 1/2c at a time and mix until well combined. Let sit in fridge for 5 minutes before icing.

He was a fan of the frosting...

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

I figured I would blog this one while waiting for them to finish cooking. Yes, the dough was THAT good. I am sure the cookies will be amazing! I found a recipe on Pinterest for these and changed a few things, like I do with most recipes I find.

Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
1c margarine, room temperature
1c brown sugar
1c white sugar
Beat these until they change color a bit and look creamed. Add in
2 eggs, one at a time
1c pumpkin puree
2tsp. vanilla extract
Then add in...
2 1/2-3c flour
3/4c old fashioned oats
3/4c quick oats
1tsp. cinnamon
1tsp. baking soda
1/2tsp. salt
Mix this carefully until combined then add more flour if the dough is too soft. Add...
1 1/4c white chips
1 1/4c milk chocolate chips
Scoop onto cookie sheet and bake at 325 for15 minutes.
(They were yummy!)

General Tso's Chicken

General Tso's Chicken
1/3c soy sauce
3 dried red peppers, chopped
(original recipe called for 6, but that is too spicy for me)
4 green onions, just the green part, sliced
1 Tbsp hoisin sauce
1/2c broth
1 Tbsp chili paste
2tsp lemon juice
1/3c sugar
Heat on medium low for 5 minutes then turn heat up to medium and add a slurry of 2Tbsp cornstarch and 2tsp water. Let thicken for a minute and toss with tempura fried chicken. Mix half package of tempura with 1/2-1c COLD water. Dip chicken pieces in and deep fry for 4-5 minutes. Re-fry all chicken for 2 minutes to make extra crispy so it will hold the sauce well.

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Sweet and Sour Chicken
1 orange
1 lemon
2c water
Cut fruit in half, place everything in a medium saucepan and boil for 5 minutes. Take out fruit and add in
2/3c sugar
1tsp red food coloring (optional)
3 1/2 Tbsp vinegar
Boil for 2 minutes. Meanwhile make a slurry with 2Tbsp cornstarch and 2-3tsp water. Pour into sauce and let thicken for a minute. Take off and use as the sauce for your chicken tempura.
To make chicken tempura, buy a box of tempura coating (in the Asian aisle). I usually use half a package for our family of 5. Mix it with COLD water until just combined. I think I use between 1/2-1c water. Add more if too thick. Dip 1" cubed chicken pieces into tempura and deep fry for 4-5 minutes. Serve with ham fried rice.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Rice Balls

Looking through my recipes trying to find a quick dinner for tonight. I am pretty sure I need to plan ahead so not every night is a "quick dinner". Anyway...didn't find anything to make, but thought I would post about RICE BALLS since everyone who has had them loves them and wants the recipe.

Rice Balls
2c cooked brown rice
2c. cooked chicken, chopped to be about the same size as rice
1-2c cheddar cheese
1c cooked sweet potato (just bake it at 350 for 30-40 minutes until it is really squishy)
1/4c milk
1 pkg Hidden Valley Ranch (fiesta ranch flavor)

3 eggs
1/2c. broccoli puree
2c. bread crumbs
Mix the rice, chicken, cheese, sweet potato, milk and ranch together with your hands (seriously, it is way faster and more effective) Roll them into 1" balls, I use a cookie scoop for ease. I put them in the fridge to firm up a bit before breading, not needed though. Beat the eggs and add the broccoli puree if you are using it. Adding that is just a way to sneak some veggies into the meal. Roll rice balls in egg then in breadcrumbs. This is so much easier to do a day ahead or morning of, then just take them out and fry. I fry mine in a deep fryer set at 375 for about 3-5 minutes or until they are nicely browned. I only fry what we are eating then and leave the rest in the fridge to fry later. Buy an extra fiesta ranch packet and mix with a 16oz sour cream to make the best dip for these. 

*You can substitute the ranch packet for other flavorings*

Maybe someday I will post a healthy recipe....

Crockpot Potato and Corn Chowder

We love corn and potato chowder! I needed to bring a soup to our RS activity last night and feed my family (after a busy day of running everywhere) I usually just make mine up as I go, but I needed something for the crockpot yesterday so I searched a few recipes and came up with this...

Crockpot Potato and Corn Chowder
3 large potatoes, diced (I mean LARGE! Or about 5 cups after the dice)
1 1/2 lb frozen corn
1 large onion, diced
1c. chopped celery
2-3Tbsp garlic
3 strips of bacon
1/2tsp seasoning (I use Nature Seasoning)
4c chicken broth (I use bullion cubes)
1 (12oz) can evaporated milk
1/2c milk
1/2tsp. garlic salt (optional)
shredded cheddar cheese
crumbled crispy bacon
Put the potatoes, corn, onion, celery, garlic, bacon, seasoning and broth in the crockpot and cook on high 5 hours or low 8 hours. Take out the bacon and discard (unless you like soggy bacon, bleh.) This is when I take some out for A. This is a great meal for families with food allergies, like milk. Add in the milks and let heat for about 30 minutes. I added some garlic salt right before serving. Pour in bowl and sprinkle with cheese and bacon crumbles. YOU MAY NOT SERVE THIS WITHOUT BREAD!!!!! (That would be a sin.) 

*This could be made vegetarian if you leave the bacon out*