Monday, August 27, 2012

It's a good day for a pot roast

This week marks a new beginning.  I was offered a job today.  Very exciting news, and also a change to the way I do things!  The crock pot will now be my friend, and freezer meals will be essential!  So, today to celebrate I decided to make a pot roast!  It's a new recipe, Balsamic Onion Pot Roast, and yes I have an obsession with Balsamic Vinegar.  Maybe one day I will be able to afford the super expensive sweet stuff to use on desserts!

Start browning the roast

Cut up the onion and line the bottom of the crock pot

Wash the mushrooms and set aside

In a sauce pan boil the 1 cup of broth to reduce

Once meat is browned, place in the crock pot on top of the onions, surround with the mushrooms and I added some carrots.

Pour sauce over the top and cook on Low for 6-8 hours.

While I'm waiting I'm going to make some Croutons, and an Enchilada Casserole.

After 6-8 hours, remove meat, and vegetables, scoop out as much of the fat that you can, and put the liquid in a pan, reduce and thicken if you want, serve on the side, or pour right on top of the meat!


Something with a crunch

You ever wonder what to do with that bread that is almost stale, a bit too crunchy to eat by itself?  I had a loaf of french bread, that I left too long, and it got very crunchy.  So today I decided to make home made croutons!  It is very simple, no "recipe" needed!

Slice the bread into cubes. Again, I have french bread,  you can use any type of bread, really, ANY type!

Melt butter 8-10 Tablespoons depending on how much bread you are using, the more liquid, the crunchier the croutons will be, and the more "meltier" they will be in your mouth!  Of course you can also use olive oil.

Pour the butter/oil over the cubes tossing to cover, then add the spices you want to use, I chose garlic and onion as these are the store bought flavors I always get.  You can use whatever flavors float your boat!

Place the cubes in a baking dish and bake at 350 for 20 - 25 minutes or so, stirring every 5, until all the cubes are crunchy.

Store in the refrigerator until you have eaten them all! Use them on salads, or as a snack!


Sunday, August 26, 2012

I don't always deep fry, but when I do...

In my house we always try to eat healthy. Try is the key word,  there's nothing healthy about bacon and butter (ya'll) but I love food...One of our favorite snacks are those little popcorn chicken you can buy frozen, then you just nuke them, if you are in a hurry, or put them in the oven to re-heat them.  But those suckers are like $9.00 a bag!  And who knows what all is put into them.  So when I came across the Sweet Chicky Nuggets on Pinterest I knew I was going to have to try them.

Once they are made it is quick to re-heat them, but when you are making them for the first time it does take some time.  After you beat an egg, add the milk and mix to combine

Slice the chicken breasts into cubes, the recipe says use two, but I used three and it worked well

Add to the milk mixture, cover and refrigerate for 2-4 hours.

When you are ready to fry them up put 2 inches-ish in a pot and start it heating, make sure you watch it, it can get too hot quickly

While the oil is heating, mix the dry ingredients in a gallon bag, shake to mix

With tongs put all the chicken pieces in the bag and shake it good to get it coated

You can fry 8-10 pieces at a time depending on how wide your fry pan is

When they are browned put them in a bowl lined with paper towels to drain, and serve them with your favorite sauces!


Once you are done eating all you want to eat, put the remaining nuggets in a freezer bag and spread them in a layer and freeze, once frozen you can put the bag upright.  To reheat just pop them in the microwave until they are hot through!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Warm and cheesy potatoes? Yes Please!

I always love when people request dishes from me.  My DH asked me to make a twicebaked potato casserole for him to take to work tomorrow.  So of course I said yes!

Baking the potatoes is what takes so long in this recipe.  Of course you could cheat and do it in the microwave, just don’t oil or salt.

Once the potatoes are done, put the to the side to cool...

And cook the bacon

While the bacon is cooking mix up the rest of the ingredients

Cube the potatoes (with or without skin), and crumble the bacon in to a large bowl, dump the cheese mixture in and mix it all up.

Put it in an oven safe dish and bake until everything is melted and bubbly.

Serve warm and enjoy!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Can't go wrong with Pork!

The heat has invaded again, well temporarily anyway.  Tomorrow is supposed to cool down again.  In the meantime I’m ready to mix up some magic in the kitchen!  Today’s offering is BrownSugar & Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin. It is luckily for me done in the crock pot!  So minimal house heating!

Put your spices in a small bowl to mix

Open your pork loin and rinse it

Rub with the spices

Put it in the crock pot with 1/2 cup of water

Cook 6-8 hours!

About an hour before the time is up combine the remaining ingredients in a sauce pan and stir and heat until thick. It will have a syrupy consistency.

Brush the loin 2-3 times during the last hour with the glaze.

I’m serving with fresh cast iron rolls, mashed potatoes, and leftover sauce as the gravy!


Monday, August 6, 2012

Bacon in that recipe? I'm on it!

Any recipe that starts with frying up bacon has me interested. I'll try any recipe once.
I don't remember where I came across the recipe for Bacon, Gruyere and Green Onion Scones, probably on Pinterest. I find a lot of recipe ideas there.  This one seemed fairly simple.  And I'm in the mood to cook! Of course I made more bacon than what the recipe called for, mostly because I would have ended up with 3 random pieces of bacon, and they made for good snacking while I worked in the kitchen.

After getting out the ingredients I would need for this recipe I started grating the cheese and chopping the green onions and put them in bowls for later.

Mix up or sift the dry ingredients together then it's time to cut in the butter. This is best done by hand, I tried to use the mixer, no go...

Once the butter has been cut in, toss the bacon, cheese, green onions and pepper in

Mix it well

Add the buttermilk.

Mix it till it forms a dough and shape it into a round and refrigerate for 30 minutes or so.

My oven doesn't take long to preheat, so I didn't turn it on until the 30 minutes were up.

Roll the dough out to about 1/2 inch thick (this was a pain as the dough wanted to stick to the rolling pin...but I managed...) and you can cut it into rounds, or as I decided to do triangles, I don't know why but when I think scones I think triangles...

I don't use parchment paper, I put my scones on my silpat mats...and then brushed them with the heavy cream.  Good thing I made ice cream the other night...I have leftover heavy cream for this!

Into the oven they go for 20-25 minutes watching for that perfect golden brown.

Once they are done you can serve them warm with some honey butter, or whatever you want.  If you make them in advance just warm them up for a few seconds in the microwave.

Warm, flaky, a bit spicy...and totally yummy!  Enjoy!

Every day is a good Pizza Day

Freezer meals are all the rage right now.  So I have my own recipe to contribute! Pizza Casserole!

You will need:
Mostaccioli Pasta, or whatever you want to use
1 jar of your favorite pasta sauce
Diced Pepperoni
8oz shredded Italian cheese
8 oz fresh mushrooms sliced (or slice whole mushrooms)
Can sliced olives
1/2 sweet onion
2 bell peppers
2-3 strips of bacon chopped (yes really)
Glad Ovenwear (or something like it)

Chop up the onion and mushrooms, these go in a bowl together off to the side

Then chop up the peppers and put them in a separate bowl
Chop up the bacon and throw it in a skillet over medium-high heat
In the meantime get some water boiling and get the pasta cooking!!

Once the bacon is crisp move it to a bowl (leaving the renderings in the pan) and set aside for later.Toss the Onions and mushrooms in the skillet and stir them up a bit, reduce heat to Medium. Add Italian Seasoning.

Cover with a lid and let it simmer for 5 minutes then add the peppers.

Once the pasta is done, rinse well with cold water, also rinse the pot with cold water because you will be mixing everything up in it.

Mix the "toppings" with the pasta

Add the sauce and stir well.

Throw in most of the bag of cheese, reserving some to top the casserole and then mix it up!

Divide the casserole between two Glad Ovenwear dishes, top with remaining cheese.

Freeze until you are ready to eat!  Then thaw and put it in the oven at 350 until bubbly.  Or you can always microwave it until bubbly.  Enjoy!