Sunday, February 13, 2011

Cupcakes from the Food Network Site

Well, my son's lacrosse team is having a bake sale at the end of the week. I thought I would try to make some cupcakes, since they seem to be the current hot item! I got several recipes off the Food Network site and tried

Classic Cupcakes with Lemon Meringue Frosting


I tried to be fancy and steeped basil in the milk then strained it out to give it a basil essence. I love basil and lemon flavors together. When the cupcakes came out I made the lemon meringue frosting and put it on the cupcakes. They looked great, but when we tasted them, the cupcakes had a good flavor with the basil, but they were very dense. The meringue frosting was too light to go with this heavy cake. It actually reminded me of a corn muffin texture.

I don't think I would make them again and would not recommend them to anyone! Sorry, I have to be honest with you so you don't waste your time!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Our Family Favorite - Apple Pie!!!


Pie Crust:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening, chilled
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, chilled
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup ice, cold water

Apple Filling:

  • 3 to 4 pounds Granny Smith or Macintosh apples
  • 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 1/2  cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces


Make the dough in a food processor. With the machine fitted with the metal blade, pulse the flour, sugar, and salt until combined. Add the butter and pulse until it resembles yellow corn meal mixed with bean size bits of butter, about 10 times. Slowly add the water until it just starts forming a ball in the machine. Remove the bowl from the machine, remove the blade, and bring the dough together by hand.
Divide dough in half and shape each into a ball. Flatten each into a 4-inch circle. Wrap and chill dough for 1 to 2 hours for easier rolling.
Dust rolling pin and work surface lightly with flour. Roll dough to a uniform thickness. Roll to a circle about 1-inch larger than upside down 8-inch pie plate. Carefully place one dough circle into pie plate and gently press into form of plate. Trim excess dough around the edge with the back of a knife.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Peel, core, and slice apples fairly thin (about 1/4 inch thick). Mix apple slices with sugar, flour, lemon juice and cinnamon. Place apple mixture in pie shell. Dot pieces of butter over the apples. Place second pie crust on top and form to the edges of the pie plate. Cut slits in the top crust to allow for steam to release in oven. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, reduce temperature of oven to 350 degrees and bake for about 30 - 45 minutes more until pie is fully baked and apples are tender. Use foil to cover rim of crust if it is getting too dark.

Monday, September 27, 2010

My son loves chicken so I am always trying to find new ways to make it! Here is a new recipe I tried tonight and it got rave reviews from my son and my husband! Hope you all like it too! I served it with a buffalo mozzarella and tomato salad served on top of a bed of watercress.

Baked Chicken with Polenta

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
8 sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil, sliced into thin strips
1/2 tsp Good Seasons Italian seasoning mix
3 TBS. of olive oil from the sun-dried tomatoes jar
1 cup assorted pitted olives, drained
1/2 cup white wine, your favorite one
3 small bay leaves

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Season Chicken with salt and pepper. Heat tomato oil in an oven proof skillet over medium-high heat. Fry chicken in hot oil until browned on both side, about 3 minutes per side. Turn off heat and add tomatoes, Italian seasoning mix, olives, wine and bay leaves. Put in oven and bake uncovered for 10 to 15 minutes.


1 Cup Corn Meal
3 cups boiling plus one cup cold water
3/4 tsp. salt
3-4 TBSP. Unsalted Butter
2 TBSP. Parmesan Cheese, grated

Bring 3 cups water to a boil in a large sauce pot. In a bowl, combine remaining 1 Cup cold water, salt and corn meal. Slowly stir into boiling water and cook until thick and bubbly. Turn heat to low and simmer about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. After 15 minutes, turn heat off, stir in butter and parmesan cheese. Serve with chicken.

Mozzarella and Tomato Salad

Using small mozzarella balls and grape tomatoes, slice in half. Add 1 TBSP. italian salad dressing (your favorite brand) 1-2 tsp. balsamic sauce (not vinegar) and salt to taste. Mix together and serve over a bed of watercress. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Skirt Steak with Tomato Rice and Marinated Avocados

I recently received a box of beautiful Mexican Avocados! I couldn't wait to add them to some of my favorite recipes! Here is one of my families favorites with the great addition of these very healthful avocados!

Skirt Steak Tacos with Tomato Rice and Marinated Avocados

Skirt Steak

    * 1 orange, thinly sliced with peel
    * 1/2 onion, thinly sliced
    * 2 Serrano chiles, minced
    * 5 garlic cloves, minced
    * 2-3 pounds skirt steak
    * Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
    * 10 oz. lager style beer
    * 1/2 cup soy sauce
    * 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
    * 1/4 cup olive oil

In a wide, shallow glass baking dish, put half of the orange slices, half of the onion slices, half the chiles and half of the garlic pieces on the bottom of the dish. Season the steak with salt and pepper and put in the dish on top of the oranges, onions, peppers and garlic. Place the remaining orange and onion slices, chiles and garlic over the steak and pour in the beer, Worcestershire sauce, olive oil and soy sauce. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate for 2 hours or up to overnight in the refrigerator.

Preheat a grill. Remove the meat from the marinade and discard the marinade. Grill the steak to desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side for medium-rare. Serve with rice and marinated avocados.

Tomato Rice

    * 3 medium to large tomatoes, cut in half and seeds removed
    * 2 cups chicken broth, plus more as needed
    * 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
    * 1 large finely diced carrot
    * 2 large garlic clove, minced
    * 2 cups medium-grain rice
    * 2 teaspoons salt
    * 1 bay leaf
    * 1 whole serrano chile, minced
    * 2 Tablespoons chopped cilantro

Add the tomatoes and 2 cups of broth to a blender and puree. Strain into a bowl and reserve the liquid. Add enough extra chicken broth to make 4 cups of liquid.In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the carrots and saute for about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for 1 minute.
Stir in the rice and cook until slightly toasted, about 3 minutes. Add the tomato broth mixture, stir and bring to boil. Add the salt, bay leaf, and the Serrano chile. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the rice is tender, about 20 - 25 minutes. Remove the pan from heat. Fluff the rice with a fork, add the cilantro and transfer to a serving bowl.

Marinated Avocados

2 large avocados, sliced
Juice of 1/2 lime
1 - 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt

Sprinkle avocados with lime juice, salt and olive oil. Set aside.

Steak Tacos:

6-8 Six inch Flour Tortillas
4 oz. Queso Fresco cheese, crumbled
Skirt Steak
Tomato Rice
Marinated Avocado

Heat flour tortillas in a heavy skillet until warm, fill with grilled, sliced skirt steak, top with tomato rice, queso cheese and marinated avocado

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

  Love the Farmer's Market! So many beautiful colors and delicious flavors!

Friday, July 30, 2010

My new favorite drink! At least for this week!

My sister introduced me to the Manhattan. I loved it right off. Of course, when it comes to alcoholic beverages, I am not hard to please! This is my version of an old standard, I hope you like it.

Fill a glass to the rim with crushed ice.
3 oz. of  Canadian Club
1 1/4 oz. Sweet Vermouth
1 oz. grenadine
2 Cherries for garnish
Stir and enjoy!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

My son's Pillows of Happiness! Potato Gnocchi

 Source:     Recipe courtesy of Tyler Florence Food Network

This potato gnocchi dish is one of my son's favorite dinners. After he came back from his lacrosse camp today, I asked what he would like for dinner! His request, potato gnocchi! After playing 6 games in 102 degree temperatures, how could I refuse him!