Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Strawberry Trifle

This is always a hit and a great dessert for showers. Nabby just requested it from me, so since I typed it up anyway, I'm posting.

Strawberry Trifle

2 8oz. pkgs. cream cheese
2 c. powdered sugar
1 c. sour cream
1 1/2 t. vanilla extract, divided
1/4 t. almond extract
1/2 pint whipping cream
4 T. sugar, divided
1 angel food cake, cubed
2 qts. strawberries, sliced

Cream together cream cheese and powdered sugar. Add sour cream, 1/2 t. vanilla extract, and almond extract; set aside. Blend whipping cream, remaining vanilla, and one tablespoon sugar. Fold into cream cheese mixture. Add angel food cake pieces. Combine strawberries and remaining sugar. In a large glass bowl, layer strawberries, then cake mixture. Continue layering, ending with strawberries as top.

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Chicken Taco Salad

Nic's recipe is similar to an easy recipe I like for Chicken Taco Salad.

I put chicken tenders in the crockpot with some taco or fajita seasoning and about 1/4 c. water (I too plop the chicken in frozen). After a couple hours, the chicken is done. I then shred the chicken, then add some frozen (or canned) corn, and a can of black beans (could use kidney or pinto). Cook until warmed through (about 1 hr. on low). Then make taco salads with tortilla chips, lettuce, cheese, tomatoes, avocados, salsa, olives, or whatever you like. I use ranch dressing on top.
I've also put the stuff into tortillas instead of taco salad formation.

This is one of the few crock pot recipes that doesn't take all day. I can put it in at lunchtime and it's done by dinner.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup

4-6 chicken breasts (I usually just put them in the crock pot frozen)
2 cans black beans
1 can of corn
1 can chicken broth (water and chicken boullion cubes also works)
1 packet taco seasoning mix1 cup salsa (any kind, sometimes I'll just add the whole jar)
Top with grated cheese, sour cream, and chips before eating.

This recipe is great because you can throw it in the crock pot in the morning, cook it on low, and it's perfect by dinner time. The chicken usually shreds on it's own, but you may want to shred it yourself before serving it.

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Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Cook's Country

I got my first issue of Cook's Country magazine today {thanks, mom!} and I'm in heaven! TONS of delicious recipes! I can't wait to try them out. If you're looking for a good food/recipe magazine, I highly recommend it. Cook's Illustrated is another good one {they're made by the same people}.

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A New Year....

...and some new recipes! Here are a few that I've tried recently. They're tasty AND healthy. A good way to ring in the new year!

Banana Waffle Stacks

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 TB. sugar
1 TB. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 cups fat-free milk
2/3 cup mashed bananas (2 med.)
1 slightly beaten egg
2 TB. cooking oil
2 cups bias-sliced banana
1/2 cup frozen light whipped topping
8 maraschino cherries (I didn't use)

1. Lightly coat waffle baker with nonstick cooking spray. Preheat waffle baker. Meanwhile, in large bowl stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon; set aside. In medium bowl stir together milk, mashed bananas, egg, and oil. Add to flour mixture and stir until combined (batter should be slightly lumpy).

2. Spoon about 2 TB. batter onto each quarter of the waffle baker. Close lid quickly; do not open until done. Bake according to manufacturer's directions. When done, use a fork to remove. Repeat with remaining batter. Serve waffles with banana slices. Top with dessert topping and a cherry. (my kids wanted syrup, too, so I added that.)

Eggplant Panini

1 cup torn arugula
2 tsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. olive oil
1/3 cup seasoned fine dry bread crumbs
2 TB. grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese
1 egg
1 TB. milk
2 TB. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 med. eggplant, cut crosswise into 1/2 inch slices
1 TB. olive oil
3 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
6 individual focaccia rolls or one 12 inch plain or seasoned Italian flat bread, halved horizontally
1 large tomato, thinly sliced

1. In a small bowl toss together arugula, vinegar, and 1 tsp. oil; set aside. In a shallow dish stir together bread crumbs and cheese. In another shallow dish beat together egg and milk. In a third shallow dish stir together flour and salt. Dip the eggplant slices into flour mixture to coat, then into the egg mixture, then into bread crumb mixture coating both sides.

2. In a nonstick skillet heat 1 TB. oil over medium heat. add eggplant slices; cook for 6-8 min. or until lightly browned, turning once. (Add more oil as necessary during cooking.) Top the eggplant with mozzarella cheese; reduce heat to low. Cook, covered, just until cheese begins to melt.

3. To serve, place the tomato slices on bottom halves of rolls. Top with eggplant slices, cheese sides up; the arugula mixture; and top halves of rolls.

Tilapia with Chili Cream Sauce

1 LB. fresh or frozen tilapia or other firm white fish fillets, 1/2 to 1 inch thick
2 TB. cornmeal
2 TB. flour
1 tsp. cooking oil
2 tsp. butter or margarine
2 tsp. flour
1 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
3/4 cup fat-free half & half
2 TB. snipped fresh parsley or cilantro (optional)
Lime slices (optional)

1. Thaw fish, if frozen. Rinse fish; pat dry. Cut into 4 serving-size portions. Stir together cornmeal and 2 TB. flour. Sprinkle over both sides of fish. Lightly coat a nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Add oil to skillet. Heat over medium-high heat. Add fish pieces. Cook over medium to med-high heat for 2-3 minutes per side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Remove fish; keep warm.

2. Melt butter in the same skillet. Stir in 2 tsp. flour, chili powder, salt and cumin. Stir in half & half. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 1 minute more. To serve, spoon sauce over fish. If desired, sprinkle with parsley or cilantro and garnish with lime slices.

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