Thursday, February 21, 2008

WC Winter Gift Exchange

Thanks to Bexxie (Rebecca) my winter exchange was FANTASTIC. I was a smart cookie, and made a wishlist on Elfster so my secret nestie knew exactly what to get me... and they did! I got Ina Garten's Outrageous Brownie Mix (sooo can't wait to make this) and an awesome heart shaped baking pan. Check 'em out.

Thanks a million Rebecca! I love everything!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Zucchini Bread

Well, I gave away/ate all the bread before I had the chance to take a picture. But the recipe is from a cookbook that my Great Grandfather created after my Great Grandmother passed away. It contains all her favorite recipes. So this has a very special place in my heart. I don't know where she got this recipe, but it makes a great bread!

Zucchini Bread

3 eggs (beat with a fork)
1 cup oil
2 cups sugar
2" peeled, finely grated zucchini squash
3 tsp vanilla - Beat
1 tsp baking soda, 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp salt, 2 tsp cinnamon
3 cups flour, sift into above
add 1 cup nuts (I didn't)
Greased tins, 325 degrees, 1 hr

This made me 4 large mini-loaves.

Best ever chocolate chip cookies

No, seriously. These chocolate chip cookies are the best I have ever had. They are amazing, and the ingredients are not "typical." I got the recipe from Cooking Light, January 2008. You can find it here. The only modification I did, was I only used chocolate chips... I didn't do the double chocolate. Trust me, they don't need it.


Chocolate Covered Strawberries

I love chocolate. I love strawberries. There are very few things in this world better than a chocolate covered strawberry. I made these for V-day, too bad my husband doesn't like them!

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Melt baker's chocolate squares in double boiler, dip strawberries, let cool on wax paper.

That's it. And boy are they good!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

When my husband and I first got married and started living together in our house, our neighbor came by with a gift. Now, the neighbors I'm referring to are the sweetest elderly couple you have ever met - they have lived in their house since the houses here were built (1960's). We feel so blessed to have such wonderful neighbors. But I digress.... they brought us over a homemade chocolate cake/pie thing, and a little cookbook from the church they attend, Bermuda Hundred United Methodist Church. That's where this recipe came from, submitted by Jeannie Lamb. I made a few edits, and I the recipe below is exactly how I made it.

Also, today is a special day. Today marks the one year anniversary of my grandfather's last chemo treatment. He beat cancer and is doing wonderfully. Grandpa and I have a very special relationship, and I love him dearly. So, I'm shipping some of these cookies to him. I'm also shipping some to my dad's mom. My dad's dad passed away about a month ago, and I want to make sure my grandmother knows how much she means to me.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

1 cup shortening
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk or sour cream (I used buttermilk)
1 3/4 cup sifted flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
3 cups quick oats
1 cup raisins

Cream shortening, sugar and eggs until light and fluffy. Stir in buttermilk, sift dry ingredients together. Stir into creamed mixture. Stir in oats and raisins. Use medium pampered chef scoop onto baking stone. Bake for 8 minutes at 400 degrees.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Penne Alla Vodka

Amisdt my husband and I trying to cut back on our grocery spending, we have decided to meal plan and buy our groceries specific to the meals we want to create. While browsing other blogs to find new meals to make, I found this Penne Alla Vodka recipe from Telly's Tasty Tidbits. It looks simple and delicious, and let me tell you it is. I didn't have all the ingredients on hand, so I changed it up a bit. To see the original recipe, click the link above. This is my version:

Penne Alla Vodka

-26 oz tomato sauce
-1/2 cup heavy cream
-1/2 vodka
-1/2 cup of "pizza" shredded cheese (this is what's it is called in my store, it is actually a mix of mozzerella, parmesan and something else..)
1 box penne noodles

-Cook noodles while preparing sauce

-For the sauce, bring tomato sauce and vodka to a simmer in a sauce pan. Once bubbly, add in the cream and let simmer. Once bubbly, add in the cheese and let simmer. Once bubbly, add the cooked pasta and stir together. I added a little bit of parsley at the end also. It is so good and so easy. Enjoy!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Parmesan Panko Pork Chops

To make this dish, I simply made a combo of panko and parmesan cheese in a small bowl. I first dipped the pork chop into 1 beaten egg, then dipped it into the panko/parmesan combo. Bake at 425 until done (mine took about 30 minutes). This is incredibly simple and tastes wonderful.

The husband and I enjoyed this with some wine from my brother and sister-in-law. Now, for those of you who don't know me, I don't drink... not one drop. But, I was feelin' frisky this night. I had to try my name-sake wine.

Chicken 'n Dumplings

I love chicken 'n dumplings. I would eat this every week if my husband let me. This is what I order at Cracker Barrel, and this recipe is my attempt at remaking it. The original recipe comes from the Bisquick box, but I modified it. The recipe below is my version.
Chicken 'n Dumplings
1 small rotisserie chicken
1 1/3 cupe Bisquick (I used Heart Smart)
6 tbsp 1% milk
salt & pepper
1 or 2 cans chicken broth (depends on how "soupy" you like it)
Boil chicken broth. Add rotisserie chicken to reheat chicken. In the meantime, mix bisquick mix and milk to create a dough. Roll out the dough and cut into small strips. Set each strip in the chicken and broth mix - be careful not to splash! Cook until the dumplings look done. Add salt and pepper to taste.
This takes me about 5-10 minutes, and is wonderful. Enjoy!

Chicken Parm

I'm a *huge* chicken parm fan, so when I saw this recipe from "The Foodie Fashionista" I knew I had to try it. I must say, it is the best I have had yet - I even got a high five from the husband. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did.

Chicken Parmesan
(I am copying the recipe straight from her page)

4 (4 ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup egg substitute or 1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs1/4 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs(OR 1 cup quick cooking oats instead of breadcrumbs and panko to stay core)
non-stick cooking spray
1/2 cup marinara sauce
1 cup fat-free shredded mozzarella cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.Pour egg in a large flat bowl. Mix breadcrumbs and panko together in second large flat bowl (or oatmeal if following core). Dip one chicken breast in the egg and then dredge through the breadcrumb mixture. Repeat for each chicken breast.Spray a large skillet with non-stick cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Spray each side of chicken cutlets lightly with cooking spray. "Fry" each cutlet on each side just until the breading starts to brown and crisp up slightly.Place cutlets on a baking sheet and lightly spray with cooking spray. Bake for 25 minutes, flipping halfway through. Spray reverse side when you flip the cutlets. After 25 minutes, spread about 2 tablespoons sauce over each cutlet and sprinkle 1/4 cup cheese over each. Bake until cheese is melted.
Yields 4 servings.
WW info:core: 1 point (for breadcrumbs; 0 if use sub with oatmeal)
flex: 6 points

As you can see, I served this along side spaghetti. I hope you enjoy this one as much as we did!