Friday, December 31, 2010

Easy Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken pot pie is the best comfort food, and this is Biz's semi-homemade recipe.  It couldn't be any easier or faster to put together, and it is just perfect on a cold night.  Give it a try in the new year.  You'll like it!

Easy Chicken Pot Pie

1 (5 oz) can chicken breast, drained of excess water
1 (14.75 oz) can Veg-All
1 (10.75 oz) can cream of chicken soup
2 (9") frozen piecrusts

In a bowl, mix together chicken, Veg-All, and soup.  Pour mixture into one of the piecrusts.  Carefully take the other piecrust from the pie plate and lay it on top of the other piecrust.  Bake in a preheated 350 oven for 50 minutes.  Serve with rice.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Prosciutto Pinwheels

YUM.  This was the perfect appetizer for us before Christmas dinner.  I had three of them without thinking twice.  The recipe calls for Gruyere, but we used Jarlsburg, and it was delicious; use a cheese that you like and that won't break your grocery budget.  You can make these early (even a couple of months early) and just keep them in the freezer until you're ready to slice and bake them.  If you do freeze them for a long time, you might need to allow some time for them to defrost.  They're great.

Prosciutto Pinwheels

3/4 cup (5 oz) Gruyere cheese
4 tsp chopped fresh basil
1 box puff pastry sheets
8 very thin slices of prosciutto
1 beaten egg

Preheat oven to 400.  Grate cheese and mix with chopped basil.  Lay pastry sheets on a tiny amount of flour.  Line with prosciutto and cover with 1/2 of cheese mix.  Leave one inch on top of the pastry sheet uncovered.  Spread raw egg with brush at the top of the pastry.  Roll pastry into log and wrap withi plastic wrap and then foil.  Repeat with other pastry sheet.  Freeze for several hours to make firm and easier to cut.  Cut log in half-inch slices and arrange cut side down on a greased baking sheet.  Bake in preheated oven for 14 minutes or until golden. 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Teak Dog Tuesday!

The Christmas Edition.  He loves the wrapping paper roll.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Cranberry Orange Cookies

How delicious!  These cookies were big winners.  I made them to give as gifts, but I'm sure I ate more than I gave away.  The glaze on top is a really nice finishing touch.  I used dried sweetened cranberries, and I left out the walnuts because I didn't have any, but I'm sure they'd be wonderful.  Give them a try!

Cranberry Orange Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp grated orange zest
2 Tbsp orange juice
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups chopped cranberries
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)


1/2 tsp grated orange zest
3 Tbsp orange juice
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

Preheat the oven to 375.  Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth.  Beat in the egg until well blended.  Mix in the teaspoon of orange zest and the two tablespoons of orange juice.  In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt; mix gradually into the orange mixture.  Mix in the cranberries and walnuts, if using, and drop by rounded teaspoonfuls on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake for 12-14 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cookies are lightly browned.  Remove from cookie sheets to cool on wire racks.  

In a small bowl, mix together the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of orange zest, 3 tablespoons of orange juice, and confectioners' sugar until smooth.  Drizzle over the tops of cooled cookies.  Let stand until set.  

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Homemade Green Bean Casserole

If you haven't picked out all your sides for Christmas dinner, you might want to work this one in.  We're fans of the classic green bean casserole with the cream of mushroom soup and the French fried onions, but the sour cream and the Ritz cracker crumbs made this one even more delicious.

Homemade Green Bean Casserole

2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp white sugar
1/4 cup onion, diced
1 cup sour cream
3 (14.5 oz) cans French or Italian style green beans, drained
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup crumbled Ritz crackers
1 Tbsp butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350.  Melt 2 Tbsp of butter in a large skillet over medium heat, and add onions.  Cook until onions are transparent, about 10 minutes.  Stir in flour until smooth, and cook for one minute.  Stir in the salt, sugar, and sour cream.  Add the green beans, and stir to coat.  Transfer the mixture to a casserole dish.  Spread the shredded cheese over the top.  In a small bowl, toss the cracker crumbs with the tablespoon of melted butter, and sprinkle over the cheese.  Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the cheese is golden and melted.  

Friday, December 17, 2010

Lazy Sausage Bread

I made this recipe my own after being insprired by several similar recipes.  I called it lazy sausage bread because I was too lazy to make my own dough, chop up a real onion, and measure out other spices.  I took the easy way out all the way.    I would have used refrigerated pizza dough if the bread dough hadn't been on sale; I'm sure it's still just as good. 

Lazy Sausage Bread
1 can refrigerated crusty French bread dough
1 lb hot breakfast sausage
1/2 Tbsp minced onion flakes
1 egg
1 1/2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

Cook sausage in skillet until browned; drain and cool on a plate lined with paper towels.  When cool, Mix with egg, cheeses, onion flakes, and Italian dressing. 

Unroll bread dough on a lightly greased cookie sheet.  Spread sausage mixture within one inch of each edge of the dough, and roll up jelly-roll style; seal edges.  Bake on greased cookie sheet for 30-35 minutes at 350.  Serve warm.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

French Onion Soup

Mmmm....this was perfect for our cold weather over the weekend.   It's delicious!  I love this soup, and I used Tyler's Ultimate recipe.  It makes a pretty big pot of soup, so make sure you have 4-6 big eaters around, or cut the recipe in half. 

I'm putting the original recipe up, but I made some changes to it.  It calls for you to use a baguette, but I'm not a huge fan of French bread, so I just cut some dinner rolls in half and melted the cheese on top of those.  I used Swiss cheese because it's cheaper than Gruyere, and I'm on a budget, especially this time of year.  I also didn't have any thyme sprigs, but I had some ground thyme, so I added probably 1/4 of a teaspoon. 

French Onion Soup

1 stick butter
4 onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 bay leaves
2 fresh thyme sprigs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup red wine
3 heaping Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 qts beef broth
1 baguette, sliced
1/2 pound grated Gruyere cheese

Melt the stick of butter in a large pot over medium heat.  Add the onions, garlic, bay leaves, and thyme, and cook until the onions are very soft and caramelized, about 25 minutes.  Add the wine, and bring to a boil.  Then reduce the heat and simmer until the wine has evaporated and the onions are dry, about 5 minutes.  Discard the bay leaves and thyme sprigs.  Add the flour and stir.  Turn down the heat to medium low so that the flour doesn't burn, and cook for 10 minutes to cook out the raw flour taste.  Add the beef broth, bring back to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes.  Add salt and pepper to taste. 

When you're ready to eat, preheat the broiler.  Arrange the baguette slices on a baking sheet in a single layer.  Sprinkle the slices with the Gruyere, and broil until bubbly and golden brown, 3-5 minutes.  Ladle the soup into the bowls, and float a few Gruyere croutons on top.  Alternately, you can ladle the soup into the bowls, top each with two slices of bread, and top with cheese.  Put the bowls into the oven to toast the bread and melt the cheese. 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Shortbread Cookies

These were so quick and easy to put together.  I even made the dough before work one morning.  The original recipe is from Claire Robinson, whose show on the Food Network is called "5 Ingredient Fix."  I love that she makes her food with five ingredients or less (salt, pepper, and water don't count as ingredients for her because they're so common), and these cookies were no exception.  One of the reviews said they were more of an adult cookie instead of a kiddie cookie, and after trying them, that made sense to me.   They were good, but there are other cookies that your kids (and maybe you) would enjoy more.   

Since I'm not limited to five ingredients, I added 1/2 cup of chopped pecans to the dough, and after the cookies were baked, I dipped them in melted chocolate.  The recipe said to make them in your food processor, which would be incredibly easy, but since mine isn't working right now, I used a spoon and my hands.

Shortbread Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into chunks
t tsp water
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375.  Add the flour, salt, and 1/2 cup powdered sugar to a food processor and pulse to combine.  Add in the butter, vanilla, and water.  Pulse together until a dough is formed.  Put the dough on a sheet of plastic wrap and roll into a log.  Tightly twist each end of the wrap in opposite directions, and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. 

When ready to bake, slice the log into disks, and arrange on a non-stick cookie sheet.  Bake until edges are light brown, about 12-14 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through the baking process.  Let cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes until transferring to wire racks to cool completely.  If desired, sprinkle with remaining 2 Tbsp powdered sugar and dip in melted chocolate chips.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Zax Sauce

We didn't have Zaxby's where I grew up, but now that I'm in Georgia, it's the place to go for chicken fingers.  (We did have Cane's, though, which is equally delicious.)  The best part about both of those chicken places is the sauce--and they know that, which is why they usually make you pay for extra.  Not any more!  Just make your own.

The recipe says to let it rest in the refrigerator for at least two hours before serving, but the longer, the better.  I read on one website that they won't even think about serving it if it hasn't been in the refrigerator for 24 hours.  It only takes a minute to throw it together, so just do it the day before.

Zax Sauce

1/2 cup mayonaisse
1/4 cup ketchup
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 - 1 tsp black pepper

Mix together all ingredients, blending well.  Refrigerate for at least two hours prior to use to allow the flavors to mingle.  Serve with chicken fingers. 

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Teak Dog Tuesday!

The first video edition of Teak Dog Tuesday! 

Since it's the first video edition, we have some things to learn. Some of the right hand side of the video is cut off, so click on the link for the full effect. If anyone can teach me how to play with the width to make the whole video show, I would appreciate the instructions. :)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Coffee Cake

This is so delicious!  A big piece of this cake is wonderful to have for breakfast or dessert.  The cake is really tasty by itself, but the brown sugar and pecan topping just puts it over the top.  Nice and yummy and fattening - just what a holiday dessert should be.  I can't recommend this highly enough!

Coffee Cake

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
1 Tbsp vanilla extract


1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp butter melted

Preheat oven to 350.  Spray a 9"x13" pan with cooking spray.  Sift together the flour, salt, and baking powder, and set aside.  In a large bowl, cream the butter until light and fluffy.  Gradually beat in the sour cream and then the sugar.  Beat in the eggs one at a time, and then stir in the vanilla.  By hand, stir in the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated.  Spread batter into prepared pan. 

To make the topping, combine brown sugar, pecans, and cinnamon in a bowl.  Pour in melted butter and combine until crumbly.  Sprinkle over cake batter in pan.  Bake in preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 

Monday, November 29, 2010

Grilled Pizza

I was so excited to find this recipe for grilled pizza.  We had never done anything like this before, but it turned out so good!  It wasn't too hard or complicated; it just takes some careful attention at the end.  We'll definitely do this again soon.

Here are some notes on the actual recipe: I'm not sure what the difference is in pizza crust yeast and regular yeast, but maybe the pizza crust yeast just works faster; I really don't know.  The recipe calls for 1/3 cup of oil, but it didn't say what kind, so I just used vegetable oil.  At the end, though, when it says to brush the dough with oil before putting it on the grill, I switched to olive oil for some reason; you can do whatever.  The recipe also said not to load the dough up too heavily with sauce and toppings, but we still had four toppings plus cheese, and it was fine.  The list of ingredients also calls for 3 cups of flour, but the first step says to mix just two cups in with other ingredients.  The remaining cup is to add to it when stirring and kneading, but I never measured it out.

The recipe makes eight individual pizzas, but if you're serving big eaters, allow two pizzas per person; leftovers never hurt anyone.  We could only fit two pizzas on the grill at a time, and we made four total.  The rest of the dough is in the fridge for later this week.

The grill is supposed to medium-hot, but we really weren't sure how to gauge that.  It took a trial run of one burned pizza, but the later ones turned out perfect.  You'll see if you need to adjust the heat of the grill or the time of cooking; our pizzas did better at 2-3 minutes instead of 3-4 minutes.  I'm sure you could do this on a grill pan too, especially if it's too cold to be outside.

You'll be so impressed with this!  You should try it!  Here are some pictures from start to finish.

Grilled Pizzas

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 envelope Fleischmann's Pizza Crust Yeast
1 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/3 cups very warm water (120-130 degrees F)
1/3 cup oil
Additional flour for kneading
Additional oil for grilling
Pizza sauce
Mozzarella cheese
Other toppings as desired

Start charcoal or preheat gas grill to medium-high heat.  Combine two cups of flour, undissolved yeast, sugar, and salt in a large bowl.  Add water and oil, and mix until well blended, about 1 minute.  Gradually add enough flour to form a soft dough.  Dough should form a ball and be slightly sticky.  Knead on a floured surface, adding more flour if necessary, until smooth and elastic and not sticky, about 5 minutes.

Divide dough into 8 portions.  Pat or roll dough on a well-floured counter to about 8-inch circles.  Brush both sides of the crust with additional oil.  Using hands, lift each crust carefully and place on grill.  Cook for 3-4 minutes or until bottom is slightly browned and top looks set.  Using tongs, remove crust from grill, and place grilled-side-up on tray or baking sheet.  Lightly add sauce and toppings to the grilled side of the crust.  Carefully slide each pizza back onto the grill and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes, or until bottom of the crust is lightly browned and cheese is melted.  Remove from grill and serve immediately.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope everyone has a full day of family, friends, and food.  This is a wonderful day to thank the Lord for all of his many blessings!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Teak Dog Tuesday!

Here's Teak hanging out by his barrel in the backyard.  The cement blocks are around the perimeter so he won't dig out while we're at work.  He has a history of doing that.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Bacon Cheddar Pinwheels

I'm starting to believe that you can create anything with Pillsbury products.  We love their pizza crust and have experimented with different uses for it, and now here's yet another delicious way to use their cresent rolls.  This would be an excellent appetizer for any get-together, and it was really quick.  (Of course, I already had cheese, bacon, green onions, Ranch, and crescent rolls, so that made it even easier.)  The hard part is not eating all of them and thus making them into a meal.  Enjoy!

Bacon Cheddar Pinwheels

1 can crescent rolls
1/2 cup (2 oz) shredded Cheddar cheese
4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/4 cup green onions, finely sliced
2 Tbsp Ranch dressing

Preheat oven to 350.  Unroll dough and separate into two triangles; pinch seams together.  Spread Ranch over each triangle to edges, and cover each with green onions, bacon, and cheese.  Starting with the short side, roll up each rectangle, and press edges to seal.  With a serrated knife, cut each roll into 8 slices.  Place cut-side-down on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake for 12-17 minutes, or until edges are golden brown.  Remove immediately from cookie sheet, and serve warm. 

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

These were good!  They were quick and easy, and I had all the ingredients without having to go to the store, which is always nice.   Next time I think I'll add white chocolate chips for even more flavor.  It's also great because of how well it freezes.  If you don't want to bake the cookies immediately, just roll the dough onto wax paper, roll it into the log, and stick it in the freezer. 

Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
1 stick butter, slightly softened
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 Tbsp honey
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups dried cranberries
1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350.  Mix dry ingredients together, and then stir in oats and set aside.  In a large bowl, beat the butter and both sugars together until light and fluffy.  Add the eggs and scrape down the bowl.  Add honey and vanilla, and beat until well blended.  Stir in the cranberries and pecans.  Drop by tablespoonfuls about 2 inches apart on lightly greased sheet pans.  Bake for 9-11 minutes, and allow cookies to rest on cookie sheet for about 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Teak Dog Tuesday!

Here's Teak, being a champion bumper-retriever.  Duck season starts Saturday, which will be a big day for Teak and Bizzuck alike.

Monday, November 15, 2010

King Ranch Chicken

This is another classic that is just so good.  I think there are a dozen different variations of King Ranch Chicken, but this one was healthier than others and still incorporated tortilla chips, which is what I live on.  Plus, it was a great way to use up the crushed chips at the bottom of the bag!  Any variation you use will probably be tasty!  Give this one a try!

King Ranch Chicken

1/2 stick butter
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (10.75oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 (10.75oz) can cream of mushroom soup
1 (10oz) can diced tomatoes (mild or hot)
2 cups cubed cooked chicken
Tortilla chips (or tortillas torn into bite-size pieces)
2 cups shredded Cheddar or Mexican-blend cheese

In a large saucepan, cook pepper and onion in melted better until tender, about 5 minutes.  Add soups, diced tomatoes, and chicken, stirring until well-blended.  In a sprayed 13x9 pan, alternately layer chips, chicken mixture, and cheese, repeating for two layers, ending in cheese.  Bake 40 minutes or until hot and bubbling.  Serves 6-8. 

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Grilled Cheese, Apple, and Bacon Sandwich

One of my favorite things on a Saturday morning is mindlessly watching Food Network shows, and last weekend I was lucky enough to catch Tyler's Ultimate.  He's was making the ultimate soup and sandwich, and his sandwich was a grilled cheese, apple, and bacon sandwich.  Umm, yes please.  I had to make it that afternoon.

This was honestly delicious.  This could easily be a Saturday afternoon (or laid back Sunday night or Friday night or whenever) staple.  Tyler's recipe called for country-style white bread, but I just used by regular wheat bread, and he also said to generously spread Dijon mustard on the bread before starting to assemble the sandwich, but I forgot to do that. 

You HAVE to try this.  It's so good!

Grilled Cheese, Apple, and Bacon Sandwich

4 slices of bread
6oz sliced Cheddar cheese
1 1/2 Tsbp butter
6 slices bacon, cooked to desired doneness
1/2 green apple, thinly sliced
(Dijon mustard, if desired)

Heat griddle or large skillet over medium-low heat.  Assemble sandwich: if desired, spread Dijon mustard on bread.  Top with slices of Cheddar, 3 pieces of bacon, apple slices, and additional Cheddar.  Place the remaining bread on top, and spread the outsides of the bread with butter.  Cook until cheese is slightly melted and bread is browned.  Flip the sandwich and continue to cook until cheese is thoroughly melted and bread is golden brown. 

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Teak Dog Tuesday!

We took the boat out for a rather chilly ride on Saturday (no one got in the water--we're not that crazy), and Teak loved every second of it!  He can't get enough of that boat.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Crawfish Etoufee

Maybe it was LSU's awesome win over Alabama on Saturday.  Maybe it was my excitement over my upcoming trip to New Orleans.  Maybe it's just homesickness; I don't know.  Whatever it was, I decided to make some crawfish etoufee last night, and it was quite good.  The recicpe is an old one from The Times Picayune; I cut the original recipe in half (I'm posting the half), and it could feed 3-4 people.  One serving is SO filling!  You serve the etoufee over rice, and you really only serve some crusty bread and maybe a salad with it. 

It's not exactly crawfish season (that's more in the spring and summer), and it's not like we get many of them in Georgia anyway, but I bought some frozen crawfish tails over the summer and used one a pound in this recipe.

The recipe says to season the finished product with salt and cayenne.  If you're afraid of cayenne pepper, just go with freshly ground black pepper.  It needs quite a bit of salt.  I was hesitant to season the whole pot just in case I put in too much or more than Bizzuck might like, so we seasoned our own bowls. 

Crawfish Etoufee

1/2 stick butter
3/4 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped celery
1 pound peeled crawfish tails
1 1/2 tsp cornstarch dissolved in 1/2 cup water
Salt and cayenne pepper to taste
1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbsp chopped green onion (green part only)
White rice

Heat the butter in a large, heavy pot over medium heat.  Add the onions, bell peppers, and celery; cook, stirring until soft and lightly golden, 8-10 minutes.  Add the crawfish and cook, stirring occasionally, until they give off a little liquid, another 8-10 minutes.  Add the cornstarch-water mixture and reduce heat to medium-low.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens, about 8 minutes.  Season with salt and cayenne.  Remove from heat.  Serve over rice, and garnish with parsley and green onions. 

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Crescent City Crunch (and An Announcement)

I don't know much about making granola, but luckily, my friend Erica does!  If you want some delicious granola, check out Crescent City Crunch on etsy or Facebook.  She's located in New Orleans, but she ships everywhere, so order some! 

It'll make you feel healthy and good about what you're eating during the winter, when you're probably normally eating a lot of sweets and just generally not working out very much (at least, that's what I do).

However, I'm ready to work out now because WE'RE GETTING MARRIED!  Bizzuck proposed about a month ago, and I'm ecstatic!  We set the date for July, so I have many miles to run between now and then to fit into the dress and look good for the pictures.  So, you should order some granola while I get on the treadmill.  :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

Sausage and Cheese Muffins

YUM.  These muffins are amazing!  Biz and I were lucky enough to be invited to the LSU/Auburn game two weeks ago at Auburn, and we brough these to contribute to the awesome tailgate where we were. (Of course, LSU was unlucky enough to lose, but that's a different story.)  This recipe is from my sister, who has perfected it, and now we're all lucky enough to learn from her.  I promise--you want these for your next breakfast, brunch, tailgate, or whenever.  You'll love them!

Sausage and Cheese Muffins

1 lb. hot ground pork sausage
1/2 - 1 small onion, chopped
3 cups all-purpose baking mix
1 (10.75 oz) can condensed fiesta nacho cheese soup
1 1/2 cups (6 oz) shredded Cheddar cheese
3/4 cup water

Cook sausage and onion in a large skillet over medium to med-high heat, stirring until it crumbles and no longer pink.  Drain and cool. 

Preheat oven to 375.  Combine sausage, baking mix, and shredded cheese in a large bowl.  Make a well in the center of the mixture.  Stir together the soup and water; add to sausage mixture, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened.  Spoon until lightly greased muffin tins, filling to tops of cups.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Teak Dog Tuesday!

It was finally cold enough to pull out the softest blanket, and Teak decided that he'd like to try it out as well.

We also decided to do something that we've needed to do for a long time: we tried to brush Teak's teeth.  This was more of an introductory session, as we only used some water on the toothbrush.  We'll have to build up to toothpaste.  The key to doing this is doing it when he's too tired to object.  (Amanda, please do this before Zoe's breath burns a hole in the ozone layer.  Thanks.)

Monday, November 1, 2010

Green Bean Casserole

This green bean casserole is a classic for a reason: it's delicious.  You know you're going to have some green beans at Thanksgiving, and you might be looking for new recipes, but why try to fix something that isn't broken?  You've probably forgotten how good this is.

Green Bean Casserole

1 (10.75oz) can cream of mushroom soup
3/4 cup milk
1/8 tsp balck pepper
1 1/3 cups French fried onions
2 (14.5oz) green beans, drained (or 2 9oz pkgs frozen green beans, thawed)

Mix soup and milk, then add pepper, gren beans, and 2/3 cup onions in a 1-1/2 qt. casserole dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until hot.  Stir, top with remaining onions, and bake 5 minutes. 

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese

If you haven't been to Plain Chicken's blog, you have to go; she always has such great recipes, and this is one of them.  Biz and I made this along with yesterday's sirloin steak, and it was good!  I hadn't had gnocchi in years, and it was great covered in cheese (but what isn't?).  The original recipe called for Parmagiano-Reggiano cheese, but I used Parmesan because I'm cheap; it also called for Gruyere, but I used Swiss (for the same reason).  I didn't know any substitutions for Fontina, so I went with it.

Gnocchi Mac and Cheese

1 pound gnocchi
2 Tbsp butter
2 tsp garlic, finely chopped
1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
3/4 cup milk
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup shredded Swiss
1/4 cup shredded Fontina
1 tsp basil
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup Parmesan

Preheat oven to 375.  Prepare gnocchi according to package directions.  Drain and place gnocchi in a single layer in a 1-1/2 qt. shallow baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick spray. 

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Whisk in flour until it thickens and bubbles; then whisk in milk and Dijon. 
Continue to whisk mixture and cook until slightly thickened, about 3-5 minutes. 

Combine Swiss and Fontina cheeses.  Add by the handful to the milk mixture, stirring until melted before adding the next handful.  Once all cheese is melted, add basil, salt and pepper. 

Pour sauce over gnocchi, and sprinkle with Parmesan over the top.  Bake gnocchi until they puff and cheese is golden and bubbly, about 25 minutes.  Let gnocchi rest for 5 minutes before serving.