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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving Dinner ???

OK... Thanksgiving Dinner is at 1 pm at my house, or at least 1-ish. I had planned Ham, Potato Salad, Green Bean Casserole, Brown Rice, Rolls and Caramel/Chocolate Brownies. My son and husband come to me and tell me that they want French Toast and Cheese Grits! (at 12 noon!!!) I said, "But my ham." My son says, "What? Nobody wants ham!" The hubby is chuckling saying, "He's right! We want French Toast!" Soooo, Thanksgiving Dinner has been moved to Supper! 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Cherry Delight Dip

I made this dip for my son's 16th Birthday Party, and it was a big hit! Both of my daughter-in-laws asked for the recipe so they could make it for their families! Now that's a compliment if I ever heard one!!!

8oz package of Cream Cheese, room temp
1/2 cup Marshmallow Fluff
1/2 tsp Vanilla
8oz tub of Cool Whip
1 can Cherry Pie Filling

Beat the cream cheese and fluff until smooth. Add vanilla and mix until combined. Fold in Cool Whip. Spread in a serving dish and top with cherry pie filling. Serve with graham crackers or vanilla wafers.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Chocolate Ice Cream

I get major brownie points for making this one for the hubby! He loves chocolate, and he loves ice cream!!!

2 cups heavy cream
1 cup milk
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2/3 cup milk chocolate chips
5 large egg yolks
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine cream, milk and cocoa. Whisk to combine. Bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and stir in chocolate chips until completely melted. Set it aside to cool slightly.

In a stand mixer, beat together egg yolks and sugar until well combined and thickened a little. Drizzle about 1/4 cup of milk mixture to the egg and sugar mixture, while continuing to beat so you don't cook the eggs yolks. Repeat 2 more times adding 1/4 cup of milk mixture to the egg mixture.

Stir egg mixture back into saucepan the milk mixture. Place back on stove and bring back to a simmer. Stir until mixture thickens slightly. Remove from heat and strain into a medium bowl to remove any lumps that may have formed. Cool to room temperature.

Wrap with plastic wrap and completely freeze mixture in freezer for 4 hours or overnight.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Chicken Bog

Chicken Bog is a pilau dish made of rice, chicken, onion, celery, spices, and often sausage. A whole chicken is boiled until tender with the sausage, onion, celery and spices, then the rice is added and cooked until it absorbs all the liquid. When I cook this for a large crowd, I create a lot of short cuts that save me time. One thing to remember is that the longer you cook this dish, the thicker and drier it gets. I like to cook mine to the consistency in the picture. I don't like mine thick and gummy, but it's your choice. Here's the scaled down version of my Chicken Bog recipe...

10-12 Chicken Tenders, cubed

1 pkg Kielbasa Sausage
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 teaspoon Garlic, minced

1/4 teaspoon sweet basil
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper 
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 

8 cups water
2 teaspoons chicken bouillon granules
2 cups rice
Kosher Salt, to taste

Slice the sausage into 1/2-inch pieces. In a stockpot, combine sausage, onion, butter, and seasonings. Cook until the sausage is browned. Add the chicken, water and bouillon. Bring to a boil. Cover and cook at a low boil for 30 minutes. Taste broth for saltiness and add salt, to taste. Add the rice to the pot and bring to a boil, stirring well. Boil for 10 minutes, (stirring occasionally) then reduce the heat. Cover the pot and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the rice is done. 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Fried Meatloaf and Bacon Wrapped Potatoes

Today you get a two for one recipe! The hubby called me with an idea to do a bacon wrapped potato. When I told him that I was out of potatoes, he quickly volunteered to go by the grocery store on his way home. If you knew how much he hates going to the grocery store, you'd know what a big deal that was to me! Well, I gave him a short list, but he was hungry so I got more than what was on my list! He picked up a few extra things... like peanuts for me to boil, Sweet Heat Potato Chips, Nutty Bars and Oatmeal Creme Pies! Never go to the grocery store hungry!!! LOL

BTW... He wanted me to do new potatoes, but he bought me baking potatoes. When I pointed that out, he asked what difference that makes. I said, "I don't know! It's your recipe!" LOL

I made MEATLOAF (click for the recipe) yesterday. I saw an idea on Mr Food's cooking break during the news, and I wanted to try it... Fried Meatloaf! After the meatloaf set up in the frig overnight (that's important), I sliced them and set up the breading station... a dish of seasoned flour, a dish of egg wash and a dish of seasoned bread crumbs. I dipped them in the flour, then the egg wash and finally the bread crumbs. I pan fried it in my cast iron skillet with a little oil until golden brown.

The Hubby's Bacon Wrapped Potatoes...

4-6 potatoes, cut into wedges
4-6 pieces of bacon
garlic powder
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Mix the flour and seasonings in a large bowl. Add the potatoes and toss to coat the wedges. Wrap with the bacon and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the bacon is good and crispy and the potatoes are golden brown.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Homemade Pita Bread... Chicken Gyros

For the Pitas:

1 cup warm water
1 pkg dry active yeast
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp oil

In a small bowl, add the yeast to the water and let sit for about 5 minutes.

Pour the yeast and water into the bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook attached. Add the oil. Slowly add the flour and salt while kneading the dough. The dough should be tacky. Knead the dough in the mixer until it is smooth, about 5 minutes. Brush a little oil over the dough Cover and let rise for an hour or until it has doubled in size.

Turn the dough out onto a floured working surface. Cut the dough into 6-8 pieces. Using a rolling pin, flatten each piece into a circle about 1/4 inch thick. Add more flour if the dough is too sticky.
Heat a cast iron pan over medium-high heat. Drizzle a little oil into the pan before adding the disks of dough. Cook the pita until bubbles start to form. Flip the dough over and cook until lightly browned. Flip the dough back over and cook for about a minute, until the pita puffs up. Remove from heat and cover with a clean dish towel. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough.

Chicken For the Gyros:

8-10 Chicken Tenders
2 tbsp Butter
2 tbsp Cavendar's Greek Seasoning
2 tsp Lemon Juice

Pan fry the chicken until done. Add the butter and seasoning. Cook until lightly browned. Set aside.

Tzatziki Sauce for Gyros:

16 ounces Greek yogurt or sour cream
1 cucumber
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp dill
1/2 teaspoon basil
3 tbsp lemon juice
salt and pepper, to taste

Peel the cucumber. Slice the cucumber in half lengthwise and use a spoon to scrape out the seeds. Grate the cucumber and squeeze in a clean kitchen towel to remove excess water.

In a medium mixing bowl, add the Greek yogurt, cucumber, red wine vinegar, dill, basil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well, cover, and refrigerate for at least an hour to allow the flavors to develop.

To assemble the Gyros:

Spread tzatziki sauce over a pita. Top with chicken. Add whatever veggies you like... Lettuce, tomatoes, black olives or green olives.