Wednesday, July 21, 2010
I have to say, this idea for honey mustard chicken strips was kind of born out of laziness and my desire for cleanliness at the dinner table. Have you ever watched a toddler dip chicken strips into sauce? Seriously messy. So, I thought, why don't I marinate the chicken strips before I bake them in honey mustard, and eliminate the need for dunking? It was either going to be an epic failure, or a true success.
Mark this one in the success column.
I'm sure I'm not the first mom to think of this, but boy, was I pleased with myself over how well these came out. I baked them, so they're less fatty and fried than the ones you'll find in a restaurant, but they still have a good crunch to them, thanks to the breadcrumbs and panko, which are a winning combination for baked chicken strips of any kind, in my book. Not only that, but my husband and I enjoyed these just as much as my son did.
Add these to your menu next week. Trust me, you will thank me.
Monday, July 5, 2010
Anyway, I have to say, this recipe smelled so good when I made it that all thoughts of picture-taking went out the window when it came out of the oven. Not only did it smell awesome, I was thrilled with how easily it came together. I served the chicken and onions on top of some egg noodles, with some steamed broccoli, and it was a delicious dinner. Even the Picky Toddler (my son's new nickname, fully unoriginal but also fully accurate) tried some of it, which I really was impressed with. I will definitely be making this one again.
from Crepes of Wrath
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
The recipe has instructions for baking, grilling and pan-frying, and I did a bit of a hybrid between grilling and pan-frying. I have a Calphalon grill pan that I love, and I used that, which created those beautiful grill marks. I also did a lot of basting, just as I would have if I had tried to grill outside (which I've never done, my husband does the grilling in our family). I thought about having my husband grill this outside, but our grilling experiences are really hit or miss. This could be because I rarely let my husband grill, so he doesn't get much practice... Anyway, this is quite possibly one of my new favorite chicken recipes. I will definitely be making it again. It was easy, cheap and flavorful. Try it for dinner tonight, you probably have all of the fixings on hand!
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
World Peace Cookies
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
In the process of having my SITS day, I found a new blog, Irresistible Icing, and I managed to win a giveaway Mimi hosted there, so I've got an awesome new cookbook coming my way. Make sure to visit Mimi, she's got a beautiful blog full of fashion, trying to watch her weight, and good old fashioned girlie fun! I was so excited to hear I won her cookbook giveaway! Talk about a jackpot - a new cookbook and a SITS day? Wow, it doesn't get much better than this for me!
When I started thinking about what to post next, I was honestly shocked that I hadn't already posted this particular recipe, since it's been around my kitchen for quite a long time - before I even started this blog! It was actually one of Toddler's very first favorite foods, back when he was not even 1 yet. I was obsessed with trying to make healthy "treats" for him, and fiddled with my mother's old banana muffin recipe to make it a little more healthy, little being the operative word. I've never been a huge fan of banana bread of banana muffins, even I like these...especially if you heat them up in the microwave for 10 seconds. These muffins also freeze beautifully. To defrost, just stick them in the microwave for about 10 seconds at a time until thawed nicely. This recipe makes 24 muffins, but you certainly can half the recipe and make just 12 if you like.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
I did my homework and found several different recipes - some more cake-like, and some more biscuit-like. I erred on the cake side of things, because doesn't cake just make everything better? It does in my world. So, I fiddled around and compiled a couple of different recipes, and wound up with this recipe. It's got a wonderful streusel topping, and it can be used with fresh or frozen blueberries. Best part of this recipe? It's so easy, and blueberries are so wonderful for you, health-wise, that the fact that they're in a cake is perfectly okay!
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup softened unsalted butter
1/2 cup milk
2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 cups fresh blueberries
1/4 cup softened unsalted butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose unbleached flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and grease an 8x8 or 9x9 square pan.
2. Cream together the softened butter and white sugar until well mixed. Add egg and mix well.
3. In a separate bowl, mix dry ingredients well. Add to butter/sugar/egg mixture, 1/3 at a time, alternating with your 1/2 cup of milk. Gently fold in blueberries, then transfer batter to your greased square pan.
4. To make the streusel topping: Mix brown sugar, white sugar, flour, cinnamon, and butter well. This mixture will be a little bit crumbly. Sprinkle mixture over the top of your batter.
5. Bake at 375 for 28-30 minutes. Let cool before serving. My husband prefers it served warm, so he puts in the microwave for a few minutes after he cuts a slice.
P.S. - Stay tuned for my next recipe next week, a marinara spaghetti sauce that reminds me of Maggiano's! :)
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Here are the three blog posts you're definitely going to want to check out while you're visiting:
Beef Teriyaki - one of my favorite dinner recipes
Thank you so much for coming by! If you like what you see, follow me, I've got some great recipes planned for June, including the second best thing I've ever baked for my husband, Blueberry Buckle. I've truly enjoyed getting to know many of you through SITS, and look forward to getting to know more of you :)
For those of my loyal followers who aren't familiar with SITS, it's a fantastic blogging sisterhood that is a fantastic place not only to network but to find new blogs to love. If you are a blogger or if you love to read blogs, you simply must check it out!
P.S. - Have you read a good book lately? Tell me about it! I absolutely love to read, and I'm running out of books to read on my To Be Read pile!
Friday, April 2, 2010
When I came across this recipe on Brown Eyed Baker, I knew that I had to try it. Immediately. It has all of Husband's favorite elements: oatmeal, peanut butter, sugar...and chocolate chips are okay with him in moderation too. These cookies got a resounding A+ from him, and I enjoyed them a bunch too, especially fresh from the oven and still warm. Even Toddler is a big fan, and he hasn't yet decided if he really likes peanut butter yet. I can see myself making these cookies as an awesome after school snack when Toddler gets bigger.
Peanut Butter-Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies from Brown Eyed Baker
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 stick (½ cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup creamy peanut butter
½ cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup light brown sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup rolled oats
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
2. Whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
3. On medium speed, cream together the butter, peanut butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and beat to combine. On low speed, gradually add the flour until just combined. Stir in the oats, and then the chocolate chips.
4. Use a large cookie scoop (3 tablespoons) and drop dough onto prepared baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly golden. Cool completely on the baking sheet and then store in an airtight container at room temperature.
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
My first hint that this was going to make for some awesome pizza was that over 2000 people rated this recipe. Seriously. That's a lot in my book. Over 37,000 people favorited this recipe. That's pretty awe-inspiring. Given that I have a stand mixer, this recipe was very easy to put together, but even if you don't have a stand mixer, you should be able to accomplish this recipe using a big bowl and a strong wooden spoon (and the necessary elbow grease to go with it).
My second hint was how amazing the house smelled while the dough rose. I love the smell of yeasty bread doughs. There's something so homey about that smell. It just makes you feel good. This dough was no exception - the only problem was that it smelled even better while it was baking. So good that when it came out and I put it on the table, I burned my mouth a little, so excited to try it. It was worth the pain. Really. I will definitely make this pizza crust again. Soon.
Signature Pizza Crust from All Recipes
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast (1 envelope)
1 tsp brown sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (~110 degrees)
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1. In a large bowl (preferably your mixing bowl for your stand mixer), dissolve the yeast and brown sugar in the warm water, and let sit for 10 minutes.
2. Stir the salt and oil into the yeast solution. Mix in the flour using the dough hook attachment for your stand mixer.
3. Turn the dough out onto a clean, well floured surface, and knead in more flour (if needed) until the dough is no longer sticky. Place the dough into a well oiled bowl, and cover with a cloth. Let the dough rise until doubled - this will take at least one hour, sometimes more depending on how humid and warm your kitchen is. Punch down the dough, and form a tight ball with the dough. Allow the dough to relax for a minute before rolling out. Use for your favorite pizza recipe.
4. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. If you are baking the dough on a pizza stone, you may place your toppings on the dough, and bake immediately. If you are baking your pizza in a pan, lightly oil the pan, and let the dough rise for 15 or 20 minutes before topping and baking it. Personally, I split my pizza dough in half and rolled it out, then gently placed it into two 9-inch cake pans that I doused with olive oil. Make sure to place your baking pans on the lowest shelf in your oven to ensure that the crust fully bakes. This recipe makes an awesome pan pizza crust.
5. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the crust and cheese are fully browned.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Oreo Chocolate White Chocolate Chunk Cookies
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2/3 cup dutch-processed cocoa
1/2 cup room temperature butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup milk
1 1/2 cups white chocolate chunks or chips
1. Preheat the oven to 325 and prepare a cookie sheet with a sheet of parchment or Silpat.
2. Whisk flour, salt, baking powder and cocoa together, and set aside.
3. Beat butter on medium-high speed until light, then add sugars, creaming well. Add the vanilla and beat until smooth.
4. Add the flour mixture in 2 batches, alternately with the milk, mixing well. Chill the dough for at least 15 minutes.
5. I used a smaller cookie scoop with these cookies, about a heaping tablespoon per cookie. Scoop the dough your prepared cookie sheet and bake. For smaller cookies like what I made, bake for approximately 10-14 minutes. If you prefer a larger, bakery-style cookie, go for about 3 tbsp per scoop, and bake for 16-18 minutes, or until just set. Cookies will look underdone - don't be alarmed! Allow cookies to cool fully on the cookie sheet.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Toddler had his first snickerdoodle at Fresh Market not too long after he turned one. He devoured it. Just loved the darn thing. Since then, I've been trying to find the most awesome snickerdoodle recipe, one that's big and chewy, soft in the middle, with awesome cinnamon flavor. I've found it! This recipe is nice and small, though easy to double, and makes about 15-18 cookies, depending on the size of your scooper. These cookies come highly recommended from my whole family.
Mrs. Fields's Snickerdoodles
1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars with an electric mixer on high speed. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until smooth.
2. In another bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda, and cream of tartar.
3. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix well.
4. Preheat oven to 300 degrees while you let the dough rest for 30 to 60 minutes in the refrigerator.
5. In a small bowl, combine the sugar with the cinnamon for the topping.
6. Take about 2 1/2 tablespoons of the dough and roll it into a ball. Roll this dough in the cinnamon/sugar mixture and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Take a drinking glass, grease it with a little bit of Crisco and press down on cookie to flatten. Repeat for the remaining cookies.
7. Bake the cookies for 13 to 15 minutes and no more. The cookies may seem undercooked, but will continue to develop after they are removed from the oven. When the cookies have cooled they should be soft and chewy in the middle.
Makes 15 to 18 cookies.
Monday, March 22, 2010
Growing up, my mom and I had waffles for dinner when my dad worked nights sometimes, when she had a long day or when she just didn't feel like cooking anything complicated. She always used Jiffy Biscuit Mix for the waffles and we doused them in Karo. I still sometimes make my waffles with Jiffy, and every bite makes me feel like a kid again. Most often, though, I try to make my waffles from scratch. In part, because cooking from scratch is important to me and also because I love trying new recipes and experimenting. This recipe is an amalgam of three or four different ones, and it came out super yummy. Nice and light, with a nice vanilla flavor to them, which of course complimented the Karo syrup just right. This recipe doubles nicely, and freezes beautifully - just lay your cooked waffles out on cooling racks until fully cooled, and then pack up into large freezer bags. Pop them in the toaster to reheat, and voila, it's like fresh waffles all over again!
Yummy Vanilla Waffles
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon white sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat your waffle iron. Beat eggs in a large bowl until fluffy, then add the remaining ingredients and beat until just smooth. Do not overmix!
Friday, March 19, 2010
Sometimes my creativity in the kitchen pays off. Not so much when I was a kid and attempting to create things that logically seemed like a good idea (hello, chocolate water, anyone?), but this time, creativity paid off in a big way. I had some chicken breasts lying around, a bottle of barbecue sauce and some bacon, and I needed to come up with an idea for dinner, as it was already 5 o'clock. I thought quickly, and tossed this dish together.
This a great dish to make on a night where time isn't on your side, or as an appetizer for your next party. Stick some toothpicks in your chicken bacon wraps, and voila, an easy appetizer! I served these for dinner, alongside some garlic roasted potato wedges and broccoli. The dish took no more than 5 minutes to prepare and toss in the oven, another 25 to cook, and then dinner was ready. It was awesome! I will definitely be making these again.
BBQ Chicken Bacon Wraps
1 1/2 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup of your favorite barbecue sauce (or make your own!)
20-30 strips of bacon
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Find a 13x9 baking pan and set out on counter.
2. Cut chicken into strips. Not too thin, you don't want the chicken to dry out. But not too thick either, because you want to make sure the bacon and chicken cook at the same speed. Aim for whatever length you like, but no more than 1/2" thick.
3. Wrap one slice of bacon around each chicken strip, and lay in your baking pan. Do this to each chicken strip, and don't worry if they're all touching, it's okay.
4. Brush each wrap well with BBQ sauce. Put pan in the oven, and bake for 13-15 minutes.
5. Take pan out of oven and flip each wrap over. Brush each wrap again with BBQ sauce, then return to the oven for another 13-15 minutes.
6. Remove pan from the oven and immediately move wraps to a serving plate or platter. You can brush again with BBQ sauce, or serve sauce on the side with your wraps. Enjoy!
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
These cookies are the kind of recipe my dad would have made - he was always the cookie baker when I was growing up, thanks to his arm of steel. His beating arm made a stand mixer totally unnecessary. This recipe is really just a good chocolate chip cookie recipe with some cocoa powder thrown in and the quantity of flour reduced as a result. The only challenge with this recipe is letting the cookies cool - because they will be somewhat fragile until you have let them sit on the cookie sheet for at least five minutes after baking. Just go do something else, preferably in another room of your home, where the lovely smell of the cookies doesn't force you to eat a cookie before it's fully set. It will crumble all over you. I promise. It will taste wonderful, but it will make a huge mess. Trust me. I speak from experience.
Triple Chocolate Cookies
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 3/4 cups white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (or dark chocolate cocoa powder)
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips (I recommend Hershey's Special Dark!)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In large bowl, beat butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; stir into the butter mixture until well blended. Mix in the chocolate chips. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto greased cookie sheets.
3. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or just until set. Cool slightly on the cookie sheets before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.
Monday, March 15, 2010
Husband was positively stoked when I told him about this recipe a while back. Unfortunately for him, this spring forward weekend has been a bit of a mess, so I had to resort to a few shortcuts to manage to get these cupcakes made. I have promised him an I.O.U. for a future making of these cupcakes, complete with seven-minute frosting and lemon curd. These cupcakes are really lemon meringue imposters. I did manage to make the lemon cupcakes...but time was working against me when it came to making the lemon curd. And well, I was already cutting corners, so I decided to make a simple vanilla buttercream frosting for the cupcakes rather than the seven-minute frosting.
These were a great treat for Husband. We had a rough weekend, between having some serious computer challenges and Toddler becoming the pickiest eater on the planet, throwing tantrums left and right at the dinner table. I think he really enjoyed sitting down to watch "The Amazing Race" with a yummy lemon cupcake. And these sure were yummy. They might not be beautiful, but they did taste good.
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
However, I know that you people are still hungry out there! I certainly don't want your sweet tooth to go unsatisfied! And trust me, if I could manage to, I would positively make some of these brownies right now and scarf them down.
Mmm, drizzle topped brownies. I can't quite recall what magazine my mother cut this recipe out of when I was a child, but my mother wasn't much for baking adventures. Where I try 15 different chocolate chip cookie recipes, she has only ever baked one, so the fact that she even cut the recipe out at all was kind of a big deal. She put it at the back of the little green metal box that she used to hold her recipe cards, and promptly forgot about it.
My dad was the first one to make these brownies, actually. He skipped the glaze, because my dad was the kind of baker improvised in the kitchen rather than baking a recipe as written, and added more chocolate chips than were called for, because you just can't go wrong with chocolate chips. They were delicious, and best of all, they were quick and easy to make. Enjoy, just make sure you've got a tall glass of milk handy!
Drizzle Topped Brownies
1 1/4 cup buttermilk baking mix (I've always used Jiffy Baking Mix)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup Dutch cocoa powder (natural works too, just not quite as rich)
1/2 cup melted butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips of your choosing - white, milk, semisweet, dark, whatever you like
1/2 cup 10x sugar
1 tsp water
1/2 tsp vanilla
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8x8 or 9x9 pan, or make a foil sling, if you want to cut and wrap your brownies individually, and grease it well.
2. In a medium bowl, mix baking mix, sugar, and cocoa well. Add melted butter, eggs and vanilla, mixing well. Stir in chocolate chips gently.
3. Spread batter in pan. Bake 22-28 minutes, checking with a toothpick inserted in the center to make sure they are done. Toothpick should come out mostly clean with a moist crumb two attached. Cool brownies completely.
4. Mix glaze ingredients and pour into a Ziploc baggie. Cut small (and I do mean small) hole in the corner of the bag and drizzle the glaze over the cooled brownies. Cut into bars and enjoy.
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Here's another super easy appetizer to put together, and these were also quite a crowd pleaser, especially amongst the kids at Toddler's party. They were a super cute version of a garlic cheese bread. I used Muir Glen tomato sauce and added some Italian seasoning and garlic powder, which gave it some great flavor (not to mention made it easy!). I love the Muir Glen tomato products, they are so much more flavorful than some others I've tried.
1 can Crescent rolls
1/2 tsp garlic powder
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 egg, beaten
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/2 cup tomato sauce (for dipping)
1. Heat oven to 350.
2. Unroll dough, separate into 2 long rectangles. Press perforations together to seal.
3. Sprinkle garlic powder and cheese over rectangles; gently press into dough.
4. Starting with 1 short side, roll up each triangle and press ends to seal. Cut into 8 pieces with a serrated knife. Place cut sides down on an ungreased cookie sheet. Brush tops with beaten egg, then sprinkle with Italian seasoning.
5. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet. Heat up tomato sauce, either in a small saucepan or in the microwave. Serve warm.
Never heard of churros? Oh, I'm so sorry. Churros are a delicious Spanish-style donut that is tossed in cinnamon sugar after frying. Best of all, they're usually served with a delicious chocolate dipping sauce...unless your only source of churros is your local skating rink or county fair, like me, in which case, you just get the yummy, fried goodness of a churro. Ah, memories. Just the thought of churros makes me think of the skating rink where I grew up and spent so much time as a kid. Fall down out on the rink? A churro will make it better. The boy you like didn't ask you to do the couples skate? A churro won't let you down like that!
I spotted these on Tastespotting just before Valentine's Day and knew I wanted to try These were a challenge to twist and turn, but the step-by-step pictures posted on La Fuji Mama really help out a lot. These were light and tasty, and darn near addictive! Also, if you visit La Fuji Mama, she also has a recipe for some awesome salted caramel dipping sauce!
Makes 45 pieces
30 wonton wrappers
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Oil for deep frying
1. Cut the wonton wrappers into thirds. Stack 2 pieces on top of each other and cut a slit (about 1-inch in length) down the center of the pieces. Pull one end through the slit in the pieces to make a bow shape. Repeat the process with the rest of the wrappers.
2. Mix the granulated sugar and ground cinnamon together and put in a sifter.
3. Heat about 1/2-inch of oil in a heavy-bottomed pot until it registers 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Add six to eight wontons at a time; cook until golden and crisp on one side, and then flip them over and cook them until they are golden and crisp on the other side. Carefully remove them from the oil (take care not to splatter hot oil on yourself!) and set them on paper towels to drain. Give them a shower of cinnamon and sugar. Repeat with the remaining wontons.
Friday, February 26, 2010
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Monday, February 22, 2010
Thursday, February 18, 2010
Monday, February 15, 2010
1 3/4 c unbleached all-purpose flour (8 3/4 oz)
1/2 tsp baking soda
14 tbsp unsalted butter (1 3/4 sticks)
1/2 c granulated sugar (3 1/2 oz)
3/4 c packed dark brown sugar (5 1/4 oz)
1 tsp table salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 1/4 c Hershey Special Dark chocolate chips
3/4 c chopped pecan or toasted walnuts (totally optional - I skipped this!)
1. Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat oven to 375. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour and baking soda together in medium bowl; set asidde.
2. Heat 10 tablespoons butter in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat until melted, about 2 minutes. Continue cooking, swirling pan constantly until butter is dark golden brown and has a nutty aroma, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove skillet from heat, using a heatproof spatula, transfer browned butter to a large heatproof bowl. Stir remaining 4 tablespoons butter into hot butter until completely melted.
3. Add both sugars, salt and vanilla to bowl with butter and whisk until fully incorporated. Add egg and yolk and whisk until mixture is smooth with no sugar lumps remaining, about 30 seconds. Let mixture stand 3 minutes, then whisk 30 seconds. Repeat process of resting and whisking 2 more times until mixture is thick, smooth and shiny. Using rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir in flour mixture until just combined, about 1 minute. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts (if using), given dough final stir to ensure no flour pockets remain.
4. Divide dough into 16 portions, each about 3 tbsp (or use #24 cookie scoop). Arrange 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets, 8 balls per sheet.
5. Bake cookies 1 tray at a time until cookies are golden brown and still puffy, and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft, 10 to 14 minutes, rotating baking sheet halfway through baking. Transfer baking sheet to wire rack and allow cookies to cool completely before serving.
Friday, February 12, 2010
Chocolate Chip Marble Bundt Cake
Adapted from Buttercake Bakery and the Los Angeles Times
Use the butter wrappers to grease the pan before dusting it with flour. And as much as you'll want to devour this cake ASAP after baking, give it a couple hours to really cool and rest out of the pan before serving--the flavor and texture is well worth the wait. This cake stays extraordinarily moist for days on end kept in a cake dome at room temperature.
Serves 12 to 16
2 1/2 cups sugar, divided
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I like Valrhona)
1/4 cup light corn syrup
2 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract, divided
2 2/3 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup milk, at room temperature
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (I like Ghiradelli)
In a small saucepan, whisk together 1/2 cup of the sugar, the cocoa powder and corn syrup with 1/2 cup hot water. Bring just to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla. Set aside.
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat it to 350 degrees. Butter and lightly flour a 12-cup bundt pan.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter with the remaining sugar until light in color and fluffy, about two minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time until thoroughly incorporated. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl. Beat in the remaining vanilla.
Reduce the mixer speed to low, and beat in a third of the flour mixture just until the flour begins to disappear into the batter. Beat in half the milk. Beat in another third of the flour, then the rest of the milk, and finish with the remaining flour until the batter is smooth. Stop the mixer and gently fold in the chocolate chips.
Scoop out a third of the batter into a medium bowl, whisk in the chocolate syrup and set aside. Pour another third of the batter into the prepared bundt pan and smooth it with a spatula. Pour the chocolate batter into the pan evenly over the first layer. Finish by pouring the last third of the vanilla batter over the top. Lightly swirl the batters with a wooden skewer or knife to give a "marble" effect--a continuous figure-8 motion while going around the pan works well.
Bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean and the cake springs back lightly when touched, about 60-70 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack. Invert the cooled cake onto a serving platter and dust lightly with powdered sugar before serving if desired. Store any leftovers in a cake dome at room temperature for 4-5 days, maybe more.
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
4 pork chops - rib chops are best!
1. Slice up one onion. Start to sauté one onion in margarine. Get brown and make some brown stuff in pan. Saute over 7-8 Heat. Once browned, move to side of pan, place chops in pan. Start boiling potatoes. Sprinkle chops with salt and Accent. Turn over when browned nicely. Once turned, when they begin to gather juice, they are nearing a done point, to where you can relocate the chop on top of another to fit more in the pan (if necessary). The brown stuff in the fry pan is what makes the gravy taste good.
2. Once all chops are gathering juice, place on an oven-safe platter and place in warm oven (around 300 degrees). Fish the onions out of the fry pan and place on the chop platter in oven. Using the same method as turkey gravy, add 2 tbsp flour for every 2 tbsp fat left in the pan. Cook over low heat, stirring until mixture is smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in 1 cup broth for every 2 tbsp flour you added to pan. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.
Monday, February 8, 2010
Fudge Coca Cola Cake (like Cracker Barrel)
1 cup coca cola
1/2 cup butter
1 square semi sweet baking chocolate
3/4 cup miniature marshmallows
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup buttermilk
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1. Place in a saucepan, the cola, butter, and chocolate baking square; bring to a boil.
2. Remove from heat and add marshmallows, stirring until all is blended and the marshmallows disappear. Set aside to cool enough or to room temperature.
3. In a mixing bowl blend the sugar, shortening, oil, and vanilla until fluffy.
4. Add buttermilk and eggs; beat until smooth.
5. Mix flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add half of the flour mixture to the shortening and egg mixture and beat scraping bowl time to time.
6. Add cooled cola mixture and beat.
7. Add remainder of the flour mixture and beat until completely smooth, about 3-4 minutes. Batter will be thick. Place batter in a 9x13-inch oiled and floured baking pan.
8. Set pan on top shelf in a preheated 350: oven for 35-45 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick. Make sure to frost cake while still warm - but NOT hot! Wait about 20-30 minutes after the cake is taken out of the oven to frost.
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup cocoa
1/4 cup Coca Cola (plus 2-3 Tbsp if needed)
1/4 cup Hershey's chocolate syrup
1 tsp. vanilla
3 cups powdered sugar
1. After cake comes out of the oven, cream together butter and cocoa.
2. Add the cola, chocolate syrup, and vanilla; beat until smooth.
3. Add sugar a little at a time and beat constantly. Scrape the side of the bowl down from time to time to get all of the ingredients into the frosting. If the frosting seems a little dry, add a little more cola and beat well.
Friday, February 5, 2010
It's been cold lately, hasn't it? We had another cold front sweep through last weekend, and I am officially out of my favorite hot cocoa mix - Ghirardelli's Premium Double Chocolate Hot Cocoa mix. The only place I can ever find it is Bed Bath and Beyond during the holidays, and I totally forgot to buy some this year. I looked online, and it seems the only way to buy it is either really expensive or by the case, which is just intimidating. So, instead, I decided to make my own cocoa mix.