08 November 2010

Fall Cookies

These addictive cookies are certain to be the hit of any bake sale or cookie swap. Hearty oats and shredded coconut provide a chewy texture while toasted pecans add crunch. Tightly covered, these cookies will keep 1 week, though they seldom last that long.

3 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups packed light brown sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 cup boiling water
1 teaspoon maple or vanilla extract
2 cups chopped toasted pecans

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees and position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. Combine oats, coconut, flour, salt, cinnamon and brown sugar in a large bowl; whisk to blend.
3. Combine butter, maple syrup and corn syrup in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium heat until butter melts, stirring occasionally; remove from heat.
4. Combine baking soda and boiling water, stirring to dissolve. Add to maple syrup mixture, stirring well. Add maple or vanilla extract. Stir into dry ingredients. Add pecans; stir well.
5. Place 1/4-cup size balls of dough on baking sheets, 3 inches apart; flatten slightly.
6. Bake 18 to 20 minutes, until golden brown and set, rotating positions halfway through the baking process. Cool on the baking sheets 5 minutes; transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

14 January 2010

Holiday Dip

This is a longtime favorite of my family around this time of year. Serve with sturdy baked pita crisps or other similar crackers. Sprinkled paprika on top after heating wouldn't hurt in the interest of adding color/flavor.

1 8 oz. package cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
3 oz. pepperoni, chopped
1 can chopped green chiles
1 1/2 tbsp. minced onion
2 tsp. chives
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Beat the cheese and sour cream in a small bowl at low speed, then stir in the rest of the ingredients. Spoon into a shallow baking dish. Sprinkle the pecans on top. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes or until the top bubbles.

04 March 2009

Dan's Mom’s Beef Stroganoff

As it has been snowy and chilly here in the Triangle this week, I was reminded of a childhood cold weather favorite--my mom's Stroganoff.

I gave my mom a call today and asked her to dictate her sirloin stroganoff recipe, as I couldn't find it in my very thick recipe file.

The nutmeg at the end is really just for color/garnish, but some folks like it if you put the nutmeg on the table and let them add to taste.

My mom thinks the nutmeg is a rather critical part of the flavor; experiment as you will. I expect she's probably right, as I could eat this dish every night and not complain. I know better than to question mom.

To make this recipe extra rib-sticking, serve it over egg noodles, farfalle, or another favorite pasta.

As daylight savings arrives again this weekend, I figured I needed to post this one under the proverbial wire. As always, please enjoy and share with my compliments!

1-1½ pounds of sirloin, cut in thin strips (the size you see in Chinese pepper steak)
1 tablespoon flour
½ teaspoon salt (kosher's always better)
2 tablespoons butter
3-4 oz. (whatever the standard size is) can mushrooms (stems and pieces)
½ cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic (Go for the gusto and add more to taste!)
2 tablespoons butter (again)
3 tablespoons flour (again)
1 tablespoon tomato paste (I really recommend the tube stuff to avoid waste)
1 10½ oz can beef broth (Campbell’s is the usual suspect, but in my opinion, going with a higher quality product on a seemingly minor ingredient like this makes a good recipe great, and it doesn't break the bank)
1 cup sour cream (I always recommend whole over lite)
2 tablespoons dry white wine (optional; not cooking wine; as Emeril says, don't put wine you wouldn't drink in your recipes, because you'll taste the difference)

Sauté onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Remove onion, garlic and mushrooms and set aside.

Coat beef strips with flour and salt. Brown the beef strips in the same skillet as above with the 1st 2 tablespoons of butter. Take a gander and decide if you need to add another tablespoon of butter if it appears short after the sauté.

Remove the beef. Add the 2nd 2 tablespoons of butter and blend in 3 tablespoons of flour and the tomato paste. When you add the flour, butter and tomato paste, stir to create a gravy base; well mixed. Stir in the beef broth, and keep stirring until smooth.
Cook and stir over medium heat until thick and bubbly.

Return the beef to the skillet. Add the onions, garlic and mushrooms sautéed earlier. Stir in sour cream and white wine if using. Cook slowly until heated; do not boil.

Sprinkle nutmeg on top for a bit of color and twang if desired and serve.

17 December 2008

Garlic White Lasagna

This has been a hit at several gatherings where we have had an oven to heat it. As it is a good cold-weather dish, I thought the holidays would be a good time to post the recipe. Enjoy!

1.5 pounds hot Italian sausage
4 large cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (12-ounce) jar roasted red pepper, drained and chopped
1/2 cup chardonnay white wine
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach
1 (15-ounce) package ricotta cheese
1/2 TSP salt
1/2 TSP pepper
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 (17-ounce) jars creamy alfredo sauce
12 lasagna noodles, uncooked
2 (6-ounce) packages sliced mozzarella cheese
1 cup grated or finely shredded refrigerated parmesan cheese

Remove and discard sausage casings if applicable. Brown sausage in a large skillet over medium heat using a wooden spoon to crumble sausage as it cooks.

Drain sausage, reserving 1 TBSP drippings in skillet. Cook garlic and onion in reserved drippings on medium-high heat until onion is tender. Stir in sausage, chopped red pepper and wine. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 5 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated.

Meanwhile, cook spinach according to package directions; drain and squeeze between paper towels to remove excess liquid. Combine spinach, ricotta cheese, and next 3 ingredients; stir well.

Spread 1 cup alfredo sauce in a greased 13" x 9" x 2" baking dish. Top with 4 uncooked noodles. Top with half slices mozzarella over sausage mixture. Repeat layers, using 1 cup sauce, 4 noodles, remaining spinach mixture, and remaining sausage mixture.

Top with remaining 4 noodles and mozzarella slices. Spread remaining alfredo sauce over mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. If desired, cover and chill overnight.

Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before baking.

Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour, uncovering during last 15 minutes of baking.

Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

Yield: 8 servings

16 December 2008

Merrie's Great Appetizer

The wonderful Merrie Hallman has come up with another gem of a recipe. She is always looking out for us, especially at this festive (and stressful) time of year! Never fear, she has given us an easy appetizer that is sure to please our guests.

She wrote, "Went to a party last night and found an excellent, easy appetizer. Four simple ingredients. It sounds like something Sandra Lee would make up. Thought I'd share. Make them this holiday season and it will be a winner. Enjoy."

English Muffin Appetizers
1 package of English muffins – cut in half
6 tablespoon mayonnaise
6 scallions, finely chopped
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Mix mayonnaise, scallions and Parmesan cheese together. Spread on muffins halves and broil.

Remove from oven and slice into quarters to make mini-pizza slices.

Absolutely delicious.

01 October 2008

Rodriguez Cheese Enchiladas

This is my Abuela's enchilada recipe. Her name is Esperanza Rodriguez. She taught my mom to make them, and my mom taught me. It is one of my very favorite meals. I still ask my mom to make it for me for my birthday meal.

2 tablespoons shortening
1/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons chili powder
8 ounces tomato sauce
2 cloves garlic, slightlly crushed
3 cups chicken broth (my mom uses water and a cube of chicken bouillon)
12 corn tortillas
12 ounches cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 a medium onion, finely chopped
1 tomato, sliced
1/4 head lettuce, shredded
Pam or other cooking spray

Melt 2 Tablespoons shortening in a skillet. Add flour; cook over medium heat until golden brown, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
Add chili powder and mix until well blended.
Return to medium heat.
Add tomato sauce, garlic, and chicken stock.
Bring to a boil, stirring frequently.
Allow sauce to simmer covered while assembling the enchiladas.
Stir sauce occationally.

Soften each tortilla by spraying lightly with Pam and heating on a dry griddle or skillet.
Reserved 3/4 cup of grated cheese for topping.
Divide the remaining cheese into 12 portions.
Take a tortillas, place one portion of shredded cheese in the tortilla and roll up. Place the tortilla into baking dish seam side down.
Repeat previous two steps until all 12 enchiladas are in the pan.
Pour enough sauce over the enchiladas to moisten all the tortillas (you will have extra sauce - if you use it all here the enchiladas will be soggy)
Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top.
Bake in a 375 degree oven for 10 minutes.
Garnish with onion, tomato, and lettuce.
Serve immediately after adding vegetables.
Serve extra sauce on the side.

Mexican Turkey Meatloaf

Cherri gave this recipe to Merrie, who then shared it with me. I thought I would post it so everyone can try it out!

1 lbs. ground turkey
1 small onion
1 cup of corn (substitute frozen southwestern corn)
1 cup of green peppers (add some red for color)
1 envelope of taco seasoning
1 egg white
1 cup of salsa
1 cup of low fat shredded cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees.
Add first six ingredience to mixing bowl. Mix together well. Take half of mixture and mold in baking pan, sprinkle ½ cup of cheese on top of mold. Then place the remainder of mixture on top of the cheese and pour the cup of salsa on top and cover. Once the loaf is done top the salsa with the rest of the cheese, uncover bake until cheese is melted!