Saturday, February 28, 2009
An ex-co-worker suggested these and they were great.
So easy and quick to fix. Try them if you have a party and want something a little different. They went over very well at the party. I could have eaten the entire platter of them myself. We had margaritas with them. I do not have any pictures because they got eaten before I could snap one. But trust me, delicious.
8 oz. cream cheese (room temperature)
1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
1/2 cup frozen whole corn kernals
Put about a teaspoon in Tostito Scoop chips. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until set. Then top with chives and/or jalapeno slice. Serve warm.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
CEiMB - Shrimp with Feta and Tomatoes or as they say in Alabama, if you can't eat shrimp, substitute chicken!
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Okay girls - get your minds out of the gutter and back to the matter at hand. Truly, get serious! We are here to talk about crunchy toffee bars. Let me just say that I am glad I made these earlier in the weekend because I ended up having to spend some time with a nice young doctor at the ER due to a severe asthma attack! It's heck not being able to breathe folks. It has now turned into acute bronchitis. Not sure which is better, but at least I can breathe. I just cough my lungs out every time I breathe now.
Since the yankee has decided all my baking is going to his hips, or his stomach, or wherever, I decided to just make half this recipe. It really was easy to whip up. My only problem was it was hard to spread the chocolate on top of the hot dough mixture. Was I supposed to let the base cool first? The instructions weren't too clear on that I thought. Or maybe my brain was foggy from no oxygen going there. I used milk chocolate instead of bittersweet in these because I am not a fan of the bitter. My toffee bits also had some chocolate in them because the hubster picked up the wrong package at the store. God love him. He tries. These bars were a bit too rich for my taste. Too buttery and chocolatey. And not crunchy really. I'm thinking I did not cook the crust long enough. Maybe they will be better in a day or two?Thanks to Whitney of What's Left on the Table for choosing the toffee bars. Whitney is a very creative blogger. The recipe for these bars will be posted on her blog so jump over there and try them today!
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Let me hear that, let me near that
Crunchy granola Let me hear that,
let me near that Crunchy granola suite
Drop your shrink, and stop your drinkin’
Crunchy granola’s neat
Sing it out
Alright Da da da daDa da da da daDee dee dee doDeedle-ee dum dum
I’ll have a double please
This week for my CEiMB group, we made granola. I have never been a granola fan. It is mostly too sweet for my tastes. I would go so far as to say I hate granola bars and cereal of any kind. I did love the granola grabber cookies we made in our TWD group. Anyway, I made this home-made granola last week and I have to say that we have not been able to keep our hands out of the huge baggie of granola. I have been eating it every morning for breakfast with yogurt, but also as a snack when I get home from work. I can't seem to get enough of it! I keeping telling myself it is healthy and not big in calories.
I used sliced almonds, pecans, whole cashews, and sunflower seeds as the nuts in it. I added some golden raisens and dried tart cherries to give it some flavor.
I also have to share with you all about my shopping excursion the other day. First to Target to buy a candy thermometer - cost was $10.00. Man is that sucker big. But it worked great on my frosting for TWD.
Then I headed to T.J. Maxx. I always love to look in their cookware section to see if they have any good bargains. I got myself a couple of new playtoys for the kitchen. One was a pan I could easily use for Kugelhopf. It only cost $6.99. Of course, now that I actually have a Kugelhopf pan, I'll probably never make Kugelhopf, right? I also bought a tiny canister for $3.99 but I am not sure what I will store in that. Those purchases just felt really good! I love bargains.
Thanks Leslie at Lethally Delicious for choosing this recipe. It made me think outside the box and prepare something I never would have thought about cooking for myself.
I hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's Day filled with lots of love and surprises!
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
Now I have to follow the rules and pass these along to other deserving bloggers. I'm not sure how many I am supposed to pass to, so I will just choose a few of my favorites. With so many wonderful, talented bloggers out there, it is a very hard task for me to choose. Some of my favorites have already been "awarded." I love to read all the following because they photograph well, they are fabulous cooks, and/or they bring me such joy with their humor! If you haven't received these already and want these awards, come on over and pick them up!!! Just know, even if your name isn't mentioned below, I love you all and you have all been an encouragement to me!
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
While I love chicken, I think the thighs are my least favorite part. However, these really were tasty. A few of the edges burned just a bit in the broiler, but not enough to hurt them thank goodness. Probably because, as usual, I was trying to do two things at once. My good friend Shelby at TWD had some delicious looking granola on her blog this week. I decided to try that and I was mixing that up as my chicken was in the broiler about to set the house on fire! By the way, the granola is to die for. Check out her blog for the recipe. Her photos always make everything look fabulous. I can't wait to have this granola for breakfast over my yogurt!
I had also been practicing my violin. After three lessons, I have moved on from twinkle twinkle to Lightly Row. I was trying to hum and get the tune memorized in this old brain of mine while I was cooking. The song just doesn't end right. You know I just have to have closure on everything. It's who I am. And this song ends with two notes that do not sound anything at all like ending notes. What's a girl to do? I mean I can't re-write every song that doesn't end the way I think it should, right?
Back to the chicken (I get distracted so easily, can you tell?) I substituted cayenne pepper for the red pepper flakes and I substituted apple vinegar for the rice vinegar.The thighs had to be marinated in the teriyaki sauce for 30 minutes, then placed on a broiler pan.
Cook in the broiler for 8-10 minutes on each side. Ours were a little under done, however, when we sat down to eat, so I had to pop them in the microwave for a minute or two. My DH says he is taking the leftovers to work for his lunch tomorrow! I served them up with wild rice and some steamed vegetables. Delicious. Definitely try these. I'll make them again and again, but next time I might try using breasts instead of thighs.
My ONLY problem with this recipe is I HATE cleaning the broiler pan. Messy messy job. But I love this recipe and thank you Jessica for choosing it!!
Here is the recipe:
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons dry sherry
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 garlic cloves, crushed with a garlic press or minced
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 pounds skinless chicken thighs
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
Combine the soy sauce, sugar, sherry, vinegar, garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes and stir until the sugar dissolves. Transfer to a resealable plastic bag and add the chicken. Seal the bag and marinate the chicken in the refrigerator, turning once, for 1 hour. The chicken can be marinated for up to 4 hours.
Heat the broiler to high. Arrange the chicken on a broiler pan skin side down and broil until brown and crispy, 8 to 10 minutes. Flip the chicken and broil until almost cooked through, about 8 minutes longer. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and cook until the seeds turn golden brown and the chicken is done, 1 to 2 minutes longer.
Monday, February 9, 2009
As my friend Pierce always says, "there's always next week's challenge!" Dang, he's a tasty morsel for an "older" guy, doesn't he? If my weeks clears up and I'm able to cook, check back on Thursday for some Teriyaki Chicken Thighs. Yum. Have a GREAT week!!!
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
It was easy and quick to mix up . ..
and then easy to bake. I used a big jar of marinated artichoke hearts instead of the frozen.
We usually spend superbowls with our good friends Tom and Rachel and Randy and Phyllis. This year Rachel hosted. I took the spinach dip and some fruit and Rachel served us some great chili, cornbread, mexican pizza and a great chocolate chip pie. Phyllis also brought a chocolate pie.
Apparently it is really difficult to pose sampling the spinach dip.
And beer might have been involved.
Thank you Cathy. We truly loved it.
And now to leave you with a little eye candy. Lately I've just really been into the Lost men! My girlfriend once said that Locke was "sex on a stick," but I much prefer Sawyer, Jack, or Sayid!!!
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
3 cloves garlic
1 (9-ounce) package artichoke hearts, defrosted, rinsed and dried
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted, excess liquid squeezed out.
1/2 cup reduced fat sour cream
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/2 cup (4 ounces) Neufchatel cheese (reduced-fat cream cheese)
2 ounces (about 1/2 cup) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Heat the oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add onions and cook stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook an additional 3 to 4 minutes, or until onions are light golden but not browned. Remove from heat and cool.
In the bowl of a food processor combine artichoke hearts, spinach, sour cream, mayonnaise, Neufchatel, mozzarella and salt and pepper. Process until smooth. Add cooled onion-garlic mixture to the food processor and pulse a few times to combine.
Transfer mixture into an 8-inch glass square baking dish or 9-inch glass pie plate which has been lightly sprayed with cooking spray. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until heated through. Serve with pita wedges or crudites.
Monday, February 2, 2009
My friend at work, Amanda, talked to me about these cookies before I made them. She said they wouldn't look that special when you cut them, or even when you take them out of the oven, but then when you put them in your mouth it will rock your world. She said and I quote, "World Peace Cookies changed my life!" She's so cute. I couldn't wait to try them after all that. My life is in a constant state of change anyway.
So I was going to make them to take to a superbowl party. Got all the ingredients out. I really loved that I had all the ingredients I needed already in my pantry. My new salt was just begging to be used. Wait, what is that amaretto doing in this group? Yikes, that is for a different recipe.
Not sure how that got in the picture.
Once I got them rolled into logs, okay don't say it, don't even think it, I mean it, I can read your mind, (people these are chocolate cookie logs for pete's sake!!!!! They are supposed to look good and chocolatey) I realized you have to chill them for three hours. So they did not go with me to the party.
After winning $25 in our work superbowl pot (lucky ducky that I am), I came home to bake the cookies. They cut into slices pretty well and it made exactly 36 cookies! I couldn't wait for them to come out of the oven. I did let them cool and then my DH and I bit into one. It was a good chocolate cookie. I didn't see rainbows or fireworks, but I did manage to eat about ten of them. Yes, in one sitting. I'm not sure they changed my life, but I liked them.
As my friend Marilyn would say, "these are some darn sexy cookies sweetheart!"
I wonder if JACK on LOST would like to share a cookie with us?Check back on Thursday for some delicious spinach and artichoke dip and a bit more about the superbowl.