Sunday, January 23, 2011

Baked Chicken Breasts

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Delicious!

3 full chicken breasts (or 6 smaller breast pieces)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 small carton sour cream
2 pkg. chipped beef, cut up

Place chicken breasts in baking dish. Scatter chipped beef over chicken. Mix together soups and sour cream, spread over chicken and beef.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1-1/2 hours. Serve over rice or noodles.

Crisp Crusted Baked Chicken

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This recipe has a twist to it - - it uses potato flakes for the coating.

1 frying chicken (approx. 3 lb), cut up
1 egg
2 Tbs milk
1 cup instant potato flakes
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Melt butter in shallow baking pan.

Wash chicken pieces and pat dry, set aside.

Beat egg and milk in bowl. In another bowl mix potato flakes, garlic powder, and Parmesan cheese.

Roll chicken first in egg mix, then in potato mix. Roll coated chicken pieces in the melted butter and place skin side up in the pan.

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until juices from chicken run clear when pierced with a fork.

Tater Tot Casserole

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Comfort food at its best!

2 lb hamburger
1 onion, chopped
2 cans cream of celery soup
1 can water
Tater Tots

Brown hamburger and onion together, drain well. Put in a 13x9 baking pan. Mix together soup and water, pour over meat mixture. Put solid layer of Tater Tots on top.

NOTE: I spray the top of the Tater Tot layer with cooking spray to help the top get crisp.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Let set 10 minutes before serving.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Bacon Cheeseburger Soup

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I adapted this recipe from one given to me by a friend. It's nice and warm and so good on a cold Winter day!

1-1/2 cups water
2 cups potatoes, peeled and cubed small
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced (I use the garlic in a jar)
1 Tbs beef bouillon granules
1/2 tsp salt
1 lb ground beef, cooked and drained
2-1/2 cups milk (divided)
3 Tbs flour
8 oz process American cheese, cubed (such as Velveeta)
1/2 lb bacon, cooked and crumbled

In a large Dutch Oven, combine the first 6 ingredients, bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Stir in beef and 2 cups of milk; heat through. Combine flour and remaining 1/2 cup milk until smooth; gradually stir into soup. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened and bubbly. Reduce heat; stir in cheese until melted. Add bacon, stir until mixed.

Makes 6-8 servings.

This soup is even better the next day, when the flavors have had a chance to blend.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Whole Wheat Molasses Bread

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This recipe is from the Joy the Baker Website (www.joythebaker.com). This recipe comes together very quickly, and is very easy to make.

I tried a slice spread with Nutella, as she suggested.....and I can say is, "WOW!"

Makes one 8×4 or 9×5-inch loaf

1 2/3 cups buttermilk or plain yogurt
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup molasses

Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8×4 or 9×5-inch loaf pan. Non-stick baking spray works well too.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, salt and baking soda.

In a small bowl whisk together buttermilk or yogurt and molasses.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold to combine. The batter will be slightly thick, but not dry. Spoon batter into prepared pan and place in the oven. Bake loaf for 45 minutes to an hour. Depending on how evenly your oven bakes, you might want to rotate the loaf in the middle of baking. Be careful though. Don’t manhandle it too hard or it might deflate.

(Note: Also, don't pull it out of the oven even a few minutes early, even if it looks like it is done or possibly even overdone.....I ruined the first loaf doing that)

When a skewer inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean, remove the loaf from the oven and allow to cool for 20 minutes in the loaf pan. Run a butter knife along the sides of the pan and carefully invert onto a wire rack.

Loaf will keep, well wrapped at room temperature, for up to 4 days.

Serve with cream cheese, jam, salted butter or Nutella.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Almond Chocolate Fudge Bars

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These were made and brought into class by an instructor of mine one time. Quite tasty, and more than a little addictive!

Crust:

1/2 cup ground almonds
1 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter
1 large egg

Process dry ingredients to a course meal in a food processor, or by using a pastry cutter. Add butter and egg and mix or process until a dough forms; don't overmix or the dough will become tough.

On a floured surface, roll out dough into a large rectangle. Place dough in a greased and floured 9 x 13 baking pan. Perforate dough randomly with a fork. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes until the edges begin to brown. Cool completely.

Fudge Topping:

1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 Tbs sugar
2 Tbs butter
1/4 tsp almond or vanilla extract
12 oz pkg semi-sweet chocolate chips

Stir the mil, sugar, butter and extract over medium-low heat until sugar is dissolved, being careful not to scorch or boil the milk. Add chocolate chips and stir until melted. Spread over cooled crust and chill.

Chocolate Cream Pie (Light Version)

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This recipe may be a light version, but you can't tell it by the taste. It's delicious!

1-1/2 cups plus 3 Tbs cold milk
2 - 4 oz pkgs sugar-free instant chocolate pudding
1 reduced fat graham cracker pie crust
4 oz light cream cheese
1 Tbs sugar
1-1/2 cups Cool Whip Lite

Combine 1-1/2 cuts milk and pudding mix with mixer, beat 1 minute. Mixture will be very thick. Spoon into pie crust.

With mixer, beat cream cheese, sugar and remaining 3 Tbs milk till smooth; fold into whipped topping. Spread over chocolate mixture in pie crust.

Top with grated chocolate if desired. Chill at least 3 hours before serving.

Note: To keep the crust from getting soggy, it can be brushed with a little beaten egg white and put in the oven for 5-10 minutes to crisp up. Cool completely before adding filling.

Waldorf Astoria Red Velvet Cake

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This recipe is from a family friend, Myrtle Sims, who makes the absolutely best Red Velvet Cake on the planet!

Cream together:

1 - 4-1/2 Tbs instant cocoa
3 oz Red food coloring
3/4 cup shortening
2 cups sugar

Add 3 eggs to the creamed mixture; mix well.

Add 3-1/2 cups flour to the mixture, a little at a time. Add 1-1/2 tsp. baking soda, 1-1/2 tsp. vinegar, 1-1/2 cups buttermilk, and 1 Tbs vanilla; mix well.

Pour into 3 round cake pans. Bake at 350 degrees until toothpick in center comes out clean (approx. 25 minutes).

Frosting:

Cream together:
1-1/2 cups sugar
1 stick butter, softened
1 Tbs shortening

Add 4-1/2 Tbs flour (1 Tbs at a time), 3/4 cup milk (room temperature), dash of salt, and 1 tsp vanilla. Beat with mixer until stiff, like whipped cream. Use for layers and to frost outside of cake.

YES - - this cake IS a lot of work, but believe me, once you taste it, you will know that it was worth every minute!

Sausage Potato Stuffing

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This is an incredible alternative to the traditional Thanksgiving (or any other day) stuffing! This recipe is a "big batch" - - you can always cut down the amounts to make a smaller dish.

5 lb white Idaho potatoes
3 lb pork sausage
1 medium onion, chopped
1 stick butter
Salt and pepper to taste
Poultry seasoning and Sage to taste

Peel and cut up the potatoes into chunks. Put into pan of cold water with a little salt, bring to boil. Lower to simmer, cook until done but not mushy.

Meanwhile, brown sausage and onion in a large skillet until sausage is no longer pink but not overdone, and onion is tender. Drain mixture on paper towel covered plate; set aside.

When potatoes are done, drain, and then put back into pan over low heat. Add butter and stir until melted, adding salt, pepper, Poultry Seasoning and Sage to taste. Mix well. Add sausage mixture and mix well.

Now that everything is mixed together, adjust seasonings to taste.

This stuffing can now be used to stuff a turkey, or can be cooked in a separate pan as a side dish.

Warning: This stuffing is very addictive!

Italian Chicken Pasta

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This recipe is adapted from a friend's recipe; she had brought this dish into work, and it was great! But being the typical Italian cook that I am, there of course had to be some "tweaks" made.....

1 pkg frozen breaded chicken breast tenders
2 pkgs fresh Mozzarella Cheese balls
1 large or 2 smaller jars Spaghetti Sauce (or homemade if available)
1 lb pasta, any type
Grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Prepare the chicken tenders either by pan frying or baking until golden. Cool slightly and cut into chunks.

Cut or tear Mozzarella into small pieces; set aside.

Heat sauce in large Dutch Oven over low heat; stir in chicken tender pieces.

Cook pasta in boiling water until "al dente", drain. Add to sauce in Dutch Oven, stir well. Add pieces of Mozzarella and stir, but don't stir too much! You want the cheese to stay in soft chunks so that it will be stringy when serving.

This dish is good served with a hot loaf of Italian bread, a side salad, and a good bottle of wine.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Party Meatballs

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These are a wonderful party appetizer or finger food.

1 - 16 oz can Ocean Spray jellied cranberry sauce
1 - 12 oz bottle Heinz Chili Sauce
1 - 2 lb bag frozen precooked cocktail-sized meatballs

Combine sauces in a large saucepan. Cook ever medium-low heat, stirring until smooth.

Add meatballs. Cover and cook for 15 minutes or until meatballs are heated through, stirring occasionally.

These can also be cooked in a crockpot:

Place meatballs in a crockpot. Combine sauces and pour over meatballs. Cover and cook 4 hours on HIGH.

Makes 30 appetizer servings.