Friday, October 7, 2011

Triple Berry Crisp

From Allrecipes

1 1/2 cups fresh blackberries
1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
4 tablespoons white sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
In a large bowl, gently toss together blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and white sugar; set aside.
In a separate large bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Cut in butter until crumbly. Press half of mixture in the bottom of a 9x13 inch pan. Cover with berries. Sprinkle remaining crumble mixture over the berries.
Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until fruit is bubbly and topping is golden brown.

*I used strawberries and raspberries from my garden and frozen blueberries.  I loved having the crust on both top and bottom!

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

I found this recipe on my friends family site, It's All About the Food

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup plain yogurt (I used sour cream--not a healthy substitute, but what I had on hand)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In another bowl, combine the egg, oil, yogurt and vanilla. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in bananas and chocolate chips. Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake at 350 degrees F for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.

Rosemary Potatoes

6 to 8 large Yukon gold potatoes or Red potatoes, cut into large chunks
4 sprigs fresh rosemary
kosher salt and ground black pepper
extra-virgin olive oil or Italian Herb Oil
1/4 c grated Parmesan

1.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2.  Put potatoes on baking sheet.  De-stem and roughly chop the rosemary leaves and scatter over the potatoes; season with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil.  Toss the potatoes well to mix all the flavors, spread out on pan, and put them in the oven.  Remove after 30 minutes and toss.  Continue to roast them until they are browned and cooked through, about 30 to 40 minutes more.  While hot, top with Parmesan.  Serve immediately.

Variations:  With Parmesan, add 6 strips of bacon, fried and crumbled and 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted.

*We make these often, the rosemary smells so good cooking.  

Breaded Garlic Chicken in Lemon-Butter Sauce

Adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe
*This was a different way to prepare chicken and was a big hit at our table!  The chicken was so juicy and tender.  I would suggest making more sauce if serving with pasta.

4 chicken breasts
1 cup seasoned flour (1 cup flour, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper)
5 cloves of garlic, finely minced
1 tablespoon parsley flakes or 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, from about 1 lemon
1 cup chicken broth
3 eggs
1/3 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil
5 tablespoons butter

Place the seasoned flour in a large gallon-size ziploc bag. Set aside. In a shallow pie plate, beat the eggs until mixed and add the Parmesan cheese. Whisk to combine. Set aside.

In a large skillet, melt one tablespoon butter and one tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Let it begin to heat and sizzle while you prepare the chicken but be careful not to let the butter burn and turn brown.

Put the four chicken breasts in the bag with the seasoned flour, close the bag, and shake to coat the chicken in the flour. One by one, take the chicken out of the bag and dip into the egg/Parmesan mixture. Place the chicken carefully in the skillet with the hot oil/butter.  Repeat with the other chicken breasts.  Let the chicken cook on the first side, without moving or flipping the chicken, for 1-2 minutes until a nice, golden crust has formed. Carefully, using a wide spatula, flip the chicken and let it continue to cook for 1-2 minutes on the other side until it is golden brown. The chicken will flip easiest if it has had time to sizzle and cook to form a nice crust.

Remove the chicken to a 9X13-inch pan. Set aside while you make the sauce.

In the same skillet that you browned the chicken, melt the remaining four tablespoons butter. Add the minced garlic, lemon juice, broth, and parsley. Simmer the sauce for 1-2 minutes, stirring and scraping up any browned bits that were on the bottom of the skillet.

Pour the sauce evenly over the chicken breasts and bake for 35 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Serve over noodles, rice or potatoes.

Apple Butter

Yields about 3 pints

4 pounds apples (about 16 medium)
4 cups sugar
2 t cinnamon
1/4 t cloves

To Prepare Pulp:  Wash apples.  Core, peel and quarter apples.  Combine apples and 2 cps water in a large saucepot.  Simmer until apples are soft.  Puree using a food processor or food mill, being careful not to liquefy.  Measure 2 quarts apple pulp.

To Make Butter:  Combine apple pulp, sugar and spices in a large saucepot.  Cook slowly until thick enough to round up on a spoon.  As mixture thickens, stir frequently to prevent sticking.  Ladle hot butter into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace.  Remove air bubbles.  Adjust two-piece caps.  Process 20 minutes (for 3001-6000 feet altitude) in a boiling-water canner.

Note:  If butter becomes too thick, add water or apple juice for desire consistency.

Peach Butter

*Peach freezer jam is my absolute fav, fav, favorite!  I guess it only makes sense that I would love this, too.  As a plus, it uses only about 1/2 the sugar.  Use it in place of jam--on toast, pancakes, biscuits, sandwiches.  I love it!

Yield: 4 cups

4 pounds peaches (about 18 peaches)
1 cup water
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
Juice of one lemon

Without a food mill: Cut a small “x” in the bottom of each peach. Dip each into a pot of boiling water for 30 seconds, and then into a bowl of cold water for a minute. The peels should slide right off. [If you have a food mill, skip the peeling step and I'll tell you where to use it in a moment.]

Halve your peaches and remove the pits, then cut each half into quarters (i.e. 8 chunks from each peach). Place peach chunks and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Simmer until peaches are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure they cook evenly. If you have a food mill, run them through it to puree them and remove the skins. If you don’t have a food mill — i.e. you already peeled your peaches — you can puree in a food processor, blender or with an immersion blender. I like my peach butter very smooth, but feel free to leave any amount of texture you prefer.

Return the peaches to the large pot, add the sugar and lemon juice and bring the mixture to a good strong simmer/gentle boil, cooking them at this level for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally in the beginning and more often near the end, as it thickens up and the fruit masses risk scorching on the bottom of the pot.

There are several methods to test for doneness: You can drizzle a ribbon of sauce across the surface; when that ribbon holds its shape before dissolve into the pot, it is done. Some people use cold or frozen plates; dollop a spoonful in the middle of one and if no water forms a ring around it in a couple minutes, it is done. Others use a spoon; if the butter remains rounded on a spoon for two minutes, it is done. You can also check the pot itself; the butter is usually done when a wooden spoon leaves a clear train when scraped across the bottom.

Let peach butter cool (unless you’re canning it, in which, follow the directions below). If you’re not canning it, keep it in an airtight container in the fridge. It should be good for at least two weeks.

To can your peach butter: First, sterilize your jars, either by boiling them in a large, deep pot of water (which should cover the jars completely) for 10 minutes or washing them in lots of hot soapy water, rinsing and drying the parts well and then place the jars only in a 200 degree oven for 20 minutes. Then, divide your hot piping hot peach butter between your jars, leaving a little room at the top. Wipe the rims clean with a dry towel and cover the jars with their lids. Submerge the jars in a large, deep pot of boiling water for 10 minutes, either in a removable basket or using tongs to dip and remove them. Let cool completely on towels, a process that can take overnight. If canned properly, the peach butter should last indefinitely at room temperature.

Pesto Sauce

5 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
3 cloves garlic
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 c Italian Dressing (I used Ken's Light Italian)

1.  Puree basil and garlic in a food processor or blender until smooth.  Add Paresan cheese, processing just to blend.  In a slow steady stream, add dressing through feed tube of food processor or lid of blender while machine is running.  Pour pesto into ice cube trays and freeze until firm. Then, pop the frozen pesto out of the trays, place in freezer-weight resealable plastic bags and store in the freezer until ready to use. Thaw in refrigerator before using.

*I was able to fill one tray of ice cubes with this recipe plus have about 1/4 cup leftover to serve with dinner.  Simply tossed with cooked pasta and added cherry tomatoes.  My kids loved it!

Herb Oil

*I got this recipe/idea from an Enrichment meeting earlier this summer.  I loved it!  Such a great way to use your fresh herbs and so versatile!  Use it to roast veggies (especially potatoes), salad dressings, cooking, or as a table condiment.  These notes come from Catherine.

Favorite herbs and/or spices:  Suggestions--rosemary, thyme, basil, tarragon, summer savory, oregano, cilantro, marjoram, chervil, chives, dill, mint, parsley, bay leaf
Sunflower, safflower, or extra-virgin olive oil

Wash and dry your choice of herb branches and lightly bruise them to release flavor.  Place them in a clean glass bottle, cover with warmed oil (about 180 degrees), and seal tightly.  Leave in a cool dark place to infuse about two weeks.  Taste.  If not strong enough, add more fresh herbs and let stand another week.  you can either strain the oil or leave the herbs in.  If you do not strain the herbs out, the flavor will become stronger as it stands.

Less strongly-flavored oils like sunflower oil and safflower oil work best to give a more prominent herb flavor.  However, extra-virgin olive oil is also a good choice.  If you begin with a monounsaturated oil such as olive oil or peanut oil, the infused oils should be refrigerated.

Use the oils within 2 months.  

Italian Herb Infused Olive Oil:
6 leaves fresh basil
2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 sprigs fresh oregano
1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil
Place basil, thyme, rosemary, and oregano in a 12 ounce bottle.  Using a funnel, pour oil into bottle.  See other notes above.

*I love this!  It looks so pretty in the bottle.  My favorite way to use it is in cooking.  Try using it with scrambled eggs or sprinkle of roasting potatoes.  If using often enough, I store it in my pantry (so I don't have to wait for it to liquefy).

Gooey Cinnamon Biscuits

From This Week for Dinner


Original recipe uses cinnamon chips. I didn't have any, but Jane from This Week for Dinner provided an
alternative method.
Ingredients needed for both versions:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 Tablespoon dark brown sugar, divided
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups heavy cream, divided
- 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Additional ingredients when using cinnamon chips:
- 1/2 cup cinnamon chips, divided
- 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Additional ingredients when NOT using cinnamon chips:
- 3 Tablespoons cold butter, cut into tiny cubes
- 2 1/2 Tablespoons brown sugar, not packed but loose
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon, divided into 1/4 and 3/4 teaspoons

Preheat oven to 425°F. Lightly grease an 8 x 8-inch baking pan and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, 1 Tablespoon brown sugar, baking powder, 1
teaspoon of cinnamon, and salt. Pour in 1 1/2 cups of the cream and mix just until combined.
Dump the dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat into rectangle, about 16″ x 8″.
Cut the rectangle into 8 equally-sized squares. Lay four of the squares in the prepared baking
CINNAMON CHIP DIRECTIONS: Sprinkle 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon,
and 1/4 cup of the cinnamon chips over the squares. Place the remaining biscuit dough
squares on top. Top the biscuits with the remaining cinnamon chips.
NON-CINNAMON CHIP DIRECTIONS: Evenly spread 2 Tablespoons of the cubed cold butter
over the squares. Sprinkle with 1 1/2 Tablespoons brown sugar and 3/4 tsp cinnamon. Place 4
remaining biscuit squares on top. Spread evenly with the remainder of the butter (1 Tbsp.),brown sugar (1 Tbsp.) and cinnamon (3/4 tsp).
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the biscuits are slightly golden brown on the outside and just cooked
through. Remove from the oven. Use a knife to spread and smear the hot cinnamon chips on
top of the biscuits, if using.
Whisk together the remaining 1/2 cup cream, confectioner’s sugar, and vanilla extract.
Lightly drizzle the biscuits with glaze. Serve immediately.

Sweet Rolls

Combine and set aside for 5 min
  ¼ c warm water
  2 T yeast
  2 T sugar

Mix together, then add yeast mixture
  1 cube margarine
  2 c warm water
  1 ½-2 tsp salt
  2 eggs

Add 5 cups of flour, and then if dough is too sticky, add 1 c more. Let rise for 1 hour on cupboard. Then more dough to fridge for at least 1 hour (or overnight if preferred).

Using ½ of the dough roll out to the size of a cookie sheet (using lots of flour). Cover the dough with 1 cube melted margarine (1/2 cube for each halve of dough). Sprinkle dough with about ½ c brown sugar and ½ c raisins. Sprinkle with cinnamon all over top (I always just do what looks right, it maybe a little more than this).  Let rise ½ hour.

Bake at 350 for 10-14 min, until light golden brown.

For topping, melt ½ cube margarine, grate skin of orange and cut orange I half and squeeze juice in then add about 1 ¼ cup powder sugar. Place 1 T frosting on each roll.

*These are so good, if I make these I'm sure to be on my husband's good side!  I also like to switch up the frosting sometimes, may I suggest the frosting from this recipe?

Spaghetti Pie

*Jeff emailed me this recipe that he got from one of his co-workers and wife. I love when he gives me suggestions and this seemed pretty easy so I went for it. I would call this a kid favorite--a cross between spaghetti, pizza, and lasagna. Nothing fancy, but an easy dinner that will have kids asking for seconds--or even thirds.

½ pound spaghetti, cooked
2 eggs
¼ c. Parmesan cheese
½ tsp. salt
¼ lb. pepperoni
2 c. mozzarella cheese (I used a combination of cheddar, mozzarella, and monterey jack)
2 c. spaghetti sauce

Combine spaghetti, eggs, parmesan cheese, and salt. Mix thoroughly. Grease 9 x 13 baking dish and place half the mixture in bottom. Layer top with half of pepperoni and mozzarella cheese. Then layer remaining spaghetti mixture. Add remaining pepperoni and mozzarella cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees. Cut into squares and serve topped with sauce.