Thursday, April 23, 2009

Pumpkin Scones

Pumpkin Scones

2 cups all-purpose flour
7 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
6 tablespoons cold butter
1/2 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
3 tablespoons milk
1 egg

Powdered Sugar Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons whole milk
Spiced Icing
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 pinch ginger
1 pinch ground cloves

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly oil a baking sheet or line with parchment paper.
Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices in a large bowl. Using a pastry knife, fork, or food processor, cut butter into the dry ingredients until mixture is crumbly and no chunks of butter are obvious. Set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin, half and half, and egg. Fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Form the dough into a ball.

Pat out dough onto a lightly floured surface and form it into a 1-inch thick rectangle (about 9 inches long and 3 inches wide). Use a large knife or a pizza cutter to slice the dough twice through the width, making three equal portions. Cut those three slices diagonally so that you have 6 triangular slices of dough. Place on prepared baking sheet.

Bake for 14–16 minutes. Scones should begin to turn light brown. Place on wire rack to cool.

TO MAKE THE PLAIN GLAZE: Mix the powdered sugar and 2 tbsp milk together until smooth. When scones are cool, use a brush to paint plain glaze over the top of each scone.

TO MAKE THE SPICED ICING: Combine the ingredient for the spiced icing together. Drizzle this thicker icing over each scone and allow the icing to dry before serving (at least 1 hour).

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Super Mario Brothers Cake

Here is the Super Mario Brothers cake I made for a 30th birthday party.

Bacon Wrapped Grilled Asparagus

Bacon Wrapped Grilled Aparagus
By: Me

1 lb asparagus
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
sliced bacon

Wash and trim asparagus. Place asparagus in a pan and drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Bundle 3 asparagus together and wrap bacon around them. Secure with toothpicks. Repeat with remaining asparagus. Place on grill and cook for 5 minutes on each side or until bacon is cooked through and asparagus are tender.

Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash Soup
By: Me

2 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash
2 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup butter
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 cup cream

Bring chicken broth and squash to a boil. Simmer for 20 minutes or until squash is fork tender. Puree in a blender until smooth. Add back to pot and simmer on low. Add butter and stir until melted. Add nutmeg and pepper. Stir in the cream. Simmer for 5 minutes and serve.

Funfetti Cookies

Funfetti Cookies
From: Pillsbury

1 (18.9-oz.) pkg. Pillsbury® Moist Supreme® Funfetti® Cake Mix
1/3 cup oil
2 eggs
1/2 (15.6-oz.) can Pillsbury® Creamy Supreme® Funfetti® Vanilla Frosting

1. Heat oven to 375°F. In large bowl, combine cake mix, oil and eggs; stir with spoon until thoroughly moistened. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. With bottom of glass dipped in flour, flatten to 1/4-inch thickness.

2. Bake at 375°F. for 6 to 8 minutes or until edges are light golden brown. Cool 1 minute; remove from cookie sheets.

3. Spread frosting over warm cookies. Immediately sprinkle each with candy bits from frosting. Let frosting set before storing. Store in tightly covered container.

Crockpot Smothered Steak and Potatoes

Crockpot Smothered Steak and Potatoes
By: Me

4 tenderized cube steaks
4 small potatoes, scalloped
1 onion, cut into rings
1 cup beef broth
1 pkg onion soup mix
Place all ingredients into a crock pot and cook for 3 hours on high.

Hawaiian Rolls

Hawaiian Rolls
From: ...And a Cookie for Dessert

1 1/4 cups pineapple juice
2 packages instant dry yeast
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into pieces
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
5 1/2 to 6 cups flour*

1. In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, beat together the sugar and butter. Beat in the yeast packages and the pineapple juice. Beat in 3 of the eggs, the vanilla, salt and ginger until well combined. Add 3 cups of the flour and beat until smooth. Stir in enough of the remaining flour (about 2 1/2 cups) to make the dough easy to handle.

2. Using the hook attachment on your stand mixer, knead the dough until smooth and elastic, about 3 minutes, using up to 1/2 cup more if necessary. Place the dough in a greased bowl and turn greased side up. Loosely cover with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in bulk, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. (Dough is ready if you poke it and the indentation remains.)

3. Punch down the dough and divide in half. Divide one half of the dough into nine equal pieces. Form each piece into a ball and pull the surface taut by tucking the dough in at the bottom of the ball. Place in a greased 9-inch round cake pan, tucked side down. Continue until the pan is filled. Repeat with the other dough half. Cover the rolls and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.

4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, lightly bat the remaining egg. Brush over the rolls and sprinkle with a couple of pinches of sugar. Bake 30 to 40 minutes, until golden brown.

*I ran out of white flour so I used 4 cups of white flour and 2 cups of wheat flour. These turned out all right.

Marinated Green Beans with Tomatoes and Feta

Marinated Green Beans with Tomatoes and Feta

2 pounds fresh green beans, trimmed
1/4 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 (8 ounce) package crumbled feta
1 bunch fresh oregano sprigs

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium heat and drop in the green beans; cook until slightly tender, but still crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Immediately drain the green beans and plunge into ice water to stop the beans from cooking further. Drain the beans and place them in a shallow serving dish.

2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Cook garlic in the oil for about 30 seconds. Remove the skillet from the heat. Stir in the tomatoes, vinegar, oregano, salt, and pepper. Pour mixture over green beans. Toss together until beans are evenly coated. Sprinkle feta cheese over the top and garnish with oregano sprigs. Chill at least 3 hours before serving.

Cuban Ropa Vieja

Cuban Ropa Vieja

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 pounds beef flank steak
1 cup beef broth
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 small onion, sliced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and sliced into strips
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon white vinegar

1. Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown the flank steak on each side, about 4 minutes per side.

2. Transfer beef to a slow cooker. Pour in the beef broth and tomato sauce, then add the onion, bell pepper, garlic, tomato paste, cumin, cilantro, olive oil and vinegar. Stir until well blended. Cover, and cook on High for 4 hours, or on Low for up to 10 hours. When ready to serve, shred meat and serve with tortillas or rice.

Chicken Bacon Ranch

Chicken Bacon Ranch
by Me

1 chicken breast per person
BBQ sauce such as Kraft Honey BBQ
2 strips bacon per chicken breast
Ranch dressing
Mozzarella cheese

Pound chicken between two sheets plastic wrap to thin out. Coat chicken in BBQ sauce. Wrap bacon around chicken and secure with toothpicks. Place on grill and cook for about 10 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Drizzle ranch dressing on one side of the chicken. Top with mozzarella and leave on grill for two more minutes or until cheese is melted.