Thursday, May 30, 2013

Philly Cheese Steak Spaghetti

I love making classic recipes with a new twist! This worked perfectly! My family loved this and said I can make it more often! That means it was a winner!

Philly Cheese Steak Spaghetti

INGREDIENTS:
1 1/2 lbs. deli roast beef, sliced thin and cut into strips
1 large white onion, sliced thin
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
3 tbls. corn oil
1 lb spaghetti, cooked according to package directions

 CHEESE SAUCE:
4 tbls. butter
4 tbls. flour
1/2 tsp. kosher salt, but taste the sauce before adding.
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 cups milk, I use low fat
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese

DIRECTIONS FOR CHEESE SAUCE:
In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter.
Add the flour and stir while cooking the flour for about 2 minutes.
Slowly add the milk, allowing it to thicken while constantly stirring.
Add 1/2 tsp of kosher salt (if needed) and 1/4 tsp. black pepper.
Stir and add in the shredded cheddar.
Keep stirring until all the cheese is melted and smooth and until the sauce is thickened.
Turn off heat, cover and keep warm.

Now cook the spaghetti according to the package directions.
While the spaghetti is cooking start browning the onions with the roast beef by
heating a large skillet on medium heat with the corn oil.
When oil is hot add the onions and cook until onions are very tender and fully cooked.
Then add in the sliced roast beef strips, 1/4 tsp kosher salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper, stirring and sauteing until well incorporated.
Remove from heat and keep warm.

Serve cooked and drained spaghetti topped with the sauteed roast beef and onions and cheddar cheese sauce.
Serves 4

This recipe belongs to My Recipe Journey food blog



 


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Honey Dijon Roasted Potatoes

Easy, simple, and delicious potato side dishes make me so happy because it's so hard for me to think of what to serve with every meal! And I just get so bored with the usual mashed potatoes or basic oven fries! The green vegetable side dish is so easy because I always have some sort of frozen variety laying around! But the starchy side dish always has me looking for something interesting! This next recipe was just what I needed!

I slightly tweaked and simplified the original recipe because I didn't have enough of the ingredients needed and I get lazy sometimes when it comes to cooking! Easier is always better!

These potatoes were so unique in flavor from the honey Dijon mustard, lemon juice and parsley! They were nicely browned...which is a must in my book! They were tangy, sweet and savory! Perfect for any meat or fish main dish! Or even just eat them alone as a snack!

Honey Dijon Roasted Potatoes

INGREDIENTS:
6 medium sized potatoes, washed and cut into quarters - I peeled mine
1/4 cup honey Dijon mustard
1/4 cup regular Dijon mustard
2 tbls. butter, melted
2 tbls. olive oil
2 tbls. fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 tbls. fresh chopped parsley
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or greased tin foil.
In a medium size bowl, whisk together everything except the potatoes.
Then add the potatoes and mix to coat with mustard mixture.
Shake off each potato piece and place them, spread out, on the lined baking sheet.
Reserve the mustard mixture for basting.
Bake for 20 minutes. Then turn each piece and baste with more mustard sauce.
Then bake for about 25 more minutes or until golden brown and fork tender.
Serve warm.

Adapted from Savory Experiments



 


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Garlic Parmesan Wonton Crackers

I am loving the many things you can do with wonton and egg roll wrappers, such as...
Frickles...Smoked Sausage Egg Rolls...Apple Pie Egg Rolls with a Caramel Drizzle and Sloppy Joe Egg Rolls! Such an easy and versatile product!

Then I came across this recipe called Baked Wonton Chips.

 This was the inspiration for my recipe! I loved how these turned out! They were so thin, light, delicate and crisp! And so easy to make! They were done in less than 20 minutes! I ate way too many of these! They were perfect with a glass of wine!

Garlic Parmesan Wonton Crackers

INGREDIENTS:
1 package wonton wrapper
olive oil
black pepper
garlic powder
grated parmesan cheese

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Cut a stack of wonton wrappers in half to make a triangle shape.
Lay out the cut wonton wrappers on the parchment lined cookie sheets.
Very lightly brush the wonton wrappers with olive oil and lightly sprinkle with black pepper, garlic powder and grated parmesan cheese.
Bake for 7-8 minutes or until golden brown.
Let cool and serve.
 
These crackers can be made in so many different flavors! I think I'll try a Mexican style cracker next time by using cumin, chili powder and cheddar cheese!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Antipasto Fritters!

Recipe **here**
This is a recipe I created for an assignment I had this month through the **Allrecipes.com Allstar Program**  I was asked to create a recipe using Sargento Shredded Cheese. I mentioned this assignment in this recent blog post here. This was a VERY easy assignment because I'm Italian...and what red blooded Italian doesn't like Sargento cheese!



Check out their Facebook page **here** with lots of
yummy recipes!
I chose to use their Part Skim Shredded Mozzarella. I like to use pre-shredded because it saves time, plus it has less moisture, so my recipe doesn't get too mushy. Great for lasagna!

The Sargento Company says, "For every moment there's a meal. And for every meal there's a perfect Sargento Shredded Cheese to go with it!"
Well, my perfect moment would be to give my hubby his dream of traveling to Italy! He's never been there and neither have I. So I decided to bring a little bit of Italy to him with my recipe creation! These Antipasto Fritters were perfect! Light and flavorful with all the ingredients we love in an antipasto. Served alone or with a marinara sauce for dipping....and maybe a nice glass of wine!

If you would love to create some special moments with some special meals, start **here** with a delicious selection of recipes from Sargento!

 And check out how my recipe looks on the Sargento website **here**  ...I hope you'll give it a try!







Sunday, May 19, 2013

Bourbon Street Crack Chicken - Crockpot Style

Okay, let me explain this recipe and its title! Louisiana has a street called 'Bourbon Street' and that is where a recipe called 'Bourbon Street Chicken' was born. The Louisiana recipe contains bourbon whiskey.

Then there is a recipe that's been passed around Pinterest called 'Bourbon Crack Chicken -Crockpot Style', which is similar to 'Bourbon Chicken' from Chinese restaurants.

Well, I wanted to make a combo of the two because if I'm going to make a recipe called 'Bourbon Chicken' it should contain bourbon! I tried to ask why there was no bourbon in the recipe from Pinterest, but that food blog isn't accepting comments on that recipe! I even tried to get answers on other Bourbon Chicken recipes, but didn't get any responses! I hate when that happens! But I love this recipe because you just throw everything into the crockpot and in 4-6 hours it's done!

So here is my version of Bourbon Street/Bourbon Crack Chicken...

Bourbon Street Crack Chicken - Crockpot Style

INGREDIENTS:
2-3 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
2 tbls. cornstarch
2 tbls. extra virgin olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, crushed
1/4 tsp. ground ginger or more if you like a stronger ginger flavor
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper - or more if you like it spicy
2 tbls. applesauce, sweetened or not
1/4 cup bourbon or whiskey
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 tbls. ketchup
1 tbls. cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup lite soy sauce

DIRECTIONS:
Whisk all ingredients into a crockpot. Add chicken and coat with mixture.
Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours.
Serve over rice.





 





Saturday, May 18, 2013

Apple and Feta Pan Fried Pizzas

Eating healthy is part of my assignment this month in the Allrecipes Allstar Brand Ambassador Program. The ambassadors were asked to choose recipes from the My Plate healthy eating recipe collection. That's exactly where I found this pizza recipe! There are so many other recipes to choose from but this one stood out to me because of the combination of ingredients! It sounded so unique and flavorful! And that's exactly what is was! Plus I never thought to pan fry pizza dough! I think I'll be doing that more often!

All the flavors work so well together...from the sharpness of the red onions to the salty feta cheese with the sweet apples and herby thyme ontop of the hearty fried dough! Tasty,  fresh and filling, all at the same time! And it's pretty too!

Apple and Feta Fried Pizzas

Makes 6 pizzas

INGREDIENTS:
1 lb. frozen store bought pizza dough
4 Tbls. olive oil
6 oz. crumbled feta cheese
1 very small red onion-thinly sliced
1 Tbls. chopped fresh thyme
1 Tbls. butter
3 sweet apples-peeled, cored and each apple sliced into 12 equal pieces
1 tsp. sugar
ground black pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS:
Place frozen dough into a greased bowl. Lightly grease the top of the dough.
Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm, draft free area.
Let dough thaw and rise until doubled in size.
This should take several hours.
When dough is ready, divide into 6 equal balls.
On a floured surface with a floured rolling pin,
 flatten each ball into rounds, 6-7" in diameter. Set aside.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium heat.
When oil is hot, fry each pizza dough until golden brown on both sides.
Then remove to a cookie sheet.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
Sprinkle the tops of each fried pizza with the feta cheese, red onions and chopped thyme.
Bake for about 12 minutes.
While the pizza bakes, saute the apples with the butter and sugar, in the same skillet used to fry the dough. Let the apples saute until golden brown and tender.
Then arrange the sauteed apple slices in a sunburst pattern, on top the cheese and onion baked pizzas. Sprinkle lightly with black pepper and serve warm.

Adapted from Allrecipes.com




 


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Balsamic Roasted Pork Chops

This recipe is so easy but so flavorful! I love the thick, tangy, robust, sauce! I think this recipe would also be perfect with chicken! I'll be trying it that way next time!
 I found this recipe on Allrecipes.com and tweaked it slightly.

Balsamic Roasted Pork Chops

INGREDIENTS:
2-3 lbs. boneless center-cut pork chops
1 packet McCormick Grill Mates Montreal Steak Seasoning (0.71 oz.)
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil

DIRECTIONS:
In a 9x13" glass casserole dish mix together the last 3 ingredients.
Then place the pork chops in the dish and coat well with the marinade.
Cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight.
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Remove plastic wrap and bake for 1 hour,
 turning the pork chops over 1/2 way through baking time.
When done cooking, remove pork chops to a serving platter and pour the marinade into a small saucepan on medium heat.  Add the wine and cornstarch mixture. Simmer and stir until thickened, about 2-3 minutes.
Pour thickened sauce over pork chops and serve warm.


SLURRY INGREDIENTS TO THICKEN SAUCE:
2 Tbls. dry red wine
2 Tbls. cornstarch

Mix together and add to the pan sauce.
Stir and simmer until thickened.

This recipe was adapted from Allrecipes.com
 


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Cheesy Honey Mustard Chicken

Doesn't that title just make your mouth water? Simple ingredients with delicious results!

The only changes I would make to this recipe is omit all the lemon ingredients and add lots of fresh garlic instead! After tasting this chicken I just thought the lemon wasn't needed and actually detracted from the taste of the honey and mustard. And next time I will use cheddar cheese instead of mozzarella because the mozz was too mild to stand up to all that mustard.  I also would use less ingredients for the sauce because I had way too much extra sauce in the pan when the chicken was done baking. The bacon bits gave it a nice smokiness! A very tasty meal that I will definitely make again! I served this with oven fries and Italian green beans.

I found this recipe on a blog called Plain Chicken I'm writing it with my suggestions in red.

Cheesy Honey Mustard Chicken

INGREDIENTS:
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
3/4 cup honey - I would use 1/2 cup
1/2 cup Dijon mustard - I would use 1/4 cup
1 tsp. lemon juice - I would omit this
2 cloves of minced garlic
Lemon pepper - I would use plain black pepper
1/2 tsp. paprika
4 Tbls. bacon bits - I used Oscar Meyer bagged bacon bits
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese - I would used sharp cheddar

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Season chicken breasts with lemon pepper (or plain black pepper)
 and place in a 9x13" baking dish.
In a small bowl combine the honey, mustard, garlic, lemon juice (if using) and paprika.
Pour mixture over chicken and bake for 25 minutes.
Top each chicken breast with 1 Tbls. of bacon bits and 1/4 cup shredded cheese.
Bake for 10 more minutes or until cheese is slightly browned.
Serve warm with pan juices.

Adapted from the Plain Chicken blog
 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Candied Bread!

I never thought to candy bread! But it's a great idea! It's a quick and delicious snack! The taste of this reminds me of the famous 'Auntie Anne's Pretzels'! I always get them when I go to the mall. I think I go to the mall just for that reason!

I found this Candied Bread recipe on a food blog called
 Cooking Classy.
 I like her pic better than mine! Go check it out!

Candied Bread
 INGREDIENTS:
4 slices of white bread or French bread (1/2 inch thick) I removed the crusts, but you don't have to.
1/4 cup salted butter, softened until easily spreadable
6 Tbls. light brown sugar
 
DIRECTIONS:
Lightly butter and heat a non stick frying pan or griddle on medium heat.
 Evenly spread 1/2 Tbls of the softened butter on one side of each slice of bread.
Then sprinkle each slice with 1/2 Tbls. of light brown sugar over the butter.
Place the bread with the butter/sugar side down, on the heated pan.
Let it get very brown. This should take a few minutes. You want the sugar to caramelize.
While the first side is browning, spread another 1/2 Tbls. of softened butter on the other side of each bread slice and sprinkle each with 1/2 Tbls. light brown sugar.
When the first side has nicely caramelized, flip the bread and brown the other side.
When both sides are browned and caramelized,
 remove to a parchment paper or waxed paper lined plate.
Let the bread cool completely because the bread will get nice and crisp as it cools...
 and because biting into hot caramel really hurts! I have the burns to prove it!


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Firecrackers!

This is the kind of snack that you just can't stop eating! Especially if you love salty/sweet combinations! The little extra surprise in this treat is the slight spiciness from the Hot Fries and the cayenne pepper! Its just the perfect balance of sweet, salty and spicy!

I found this recipe **here** but I slightly tweaked the ingredients and preparation! I'm posting the recipe the way I made it!

Firecrackers

INGREDIENTS:
1 (8 oz.) package  'Andy Capp's Hot Fries' or any other Hot Fries snack
15 oz. white chocolate
Cayenne Pepper 

DIRECTIONS:
Line a large cookie sheet with waxed paper.
Melt the white chocolate according to package directions until completely melted. Get the chocolate as liquidy as possible so that you get a thin coating on the fries.
Now this is the messy part...dip the hot fries, a handful at a time, into the melted white chocolate, to lightly coat each of the fries, scraping off the excess if needed.
Individual place them on the waxed paper, making sure they don't touch each other.
Sprinkle very lightly with cayenne pepper. Allow the chocolate to firm up,
then transfer to a serving dish or container.
These will be eaten fast!

Recipe adapted from Allrecipes.com