Saturday, September 26, 2009

Beef and Hatch Chilies

Beef and Hatch Chilies
by Me

2 cloved garlic, minced
1/2 onion, chopped
1 1/2 lbs sirloin steak, trimmed and sliced into 1 inch pieces
1/2 lb roasted hatch chilies, skin removed
2 large tomatoes, skin removed
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1 cup water
salt and pepper to taste
Lime juice (optional)

Heat garlic and onions in a large sauce pan over medium heat for 3 minutes or until slightly brown. Add steak and brown for about 10 minutes. Add chilies, tomatoes, cilantro, and water. Cover and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with a squeeze of lime juice.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Mexican Sour Cream Rice

Mexican Sour Cream Rice

adapted from ...and a Cookie for Dessert and A Taste of Home Cooking

1 cup uncooked long grain white rice
1 (14 ounce) can chicken broth
1 cup reduced fat sour cream
3 roasted hatch chilies, skin removed and chopped
1 (8.75 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
salt and ground black pepper to taste

In a large pot, bring the rice and chicken broth to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 20 minutes. In the pot with the cooked rice, mix the sour cream, hatch chilies, corn, and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Southern Peach Cobbler

Southern Peach Cobbler

8 fresh peaches - peeled, pitted and sliced into thin wedges
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons cornstarch

For the crust:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1/4 cup boiling water

For the topping:
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). In a large bowl, combine peaches, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice, and cornstarch. Toss to coat evenly, and pour into a 2 quart baking dish. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine flour, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, baking powder, and salt. Blend in butter with your fingertips, or a pastry blender, until mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in water until just combined. Remove peaches from oven, and drop spoonfuls of topping over them.

Sprinkle entire cobbler with the sugar and cinnamon mixture. Bake until topping is golden, about 30 minutes.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Cafe Sua Da - Vietnamese Ice Coffee

Cafe Sua Da (Vietnamese Ice Coffee)

2 Tbsp strong French roast coffee such as Cafe Du Monde, ground
2 Tbsp sweetened condensed milk
1 1/2 cups boiling water
ice cubes

Pour sweetened condensed milk in the bottom of a coffee mug. Unscrew coffee filter strainer. Add ground coffee to the bottom on the filter. Screw coffee filter strainer back on until it fits snug. Place coffee filter over mug. Add about 1/2 inch of boiling water over strainer. Wait about 30 seconds to allow coffee grounds to expand. Loosen filter by unscrewing two turns. Pour additional water over filter. When water has filtered through pour additional water over filter. Continue until all water has filtered through. Stir coffee in mug until the condensed milk has combined with coffee. Fill a class with ice. Pour coffee over ice. Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Peanut Butter Crisscrosses

Peanut Butter Crisscrosses
from Baking: From My Home to Yours, by Dorie Greenspan

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
pinch of grated nutmeg
2 sticks (8 oz.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup peanut butter (crunchy or smooth)
1 cup packed light brown sugar
¾ cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 ½ cups chopped salted peanuts (I omitted this since I used crunchy peanut butter)
about ½ cup sugar, for rolling

Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 350°. Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.

Whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and nutmeg.

Working with a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed for a minute or two, until smooth and creamy. Add the peanut butter and beat for another minute. Add the sugars and beat for 3 minutes more. Add the eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute after each addition. Scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl and, on low speed, add the dry ingredients, mixing only until they just disappear. Mix in the chopped peanuts. You’ll have a soft, pliable (mushable, actually) dough.

Pour the ½ cup of sugar into a small bowl. Working with a level tablespoonful of dough for each cookie, roll the dough between your palms into balls and drop the balls, a couple at a time, into the sugar. Roll the balls around in the sugar to coat them, then place on the baking sheets, leaving 2 inches between them. Dip the tines of a fork in sugar and press the tines against each ball first in one direction and then in a perpendicular direction – you should have a flattened round of dough with crisscross indentations.

Bake for about 12 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point. When done, the cookies will be lightly colored and still a little soft. Let the cookies sit on the sheets for a minute before transferring them to cooling racks with a wide metal spatula. Cool to room temperature.

Repeat with the remaining dough, making sure to cool the baking sheets between batches.

The cookies will keep for at least 5 days in the cookie jar. Wrapped airtight, they can be frozen for up to 2 months.

These were perfect peanut butter cookies - crispy on the outside and soft in the middle. I highly recommend this recipe.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Chocolate Fudge Jr Mint Centered Cupcakes

Chocolate Fudge Jr Mint Centered Cupcakes
adapted from

1 box chocolate cake mix plus the ingredients to prepare per package directions
3-4 oz boxes Jr Mints
Favorite vanilla or chocolate frosting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare cake mix per package directions. Scoop into 24 lined muffin cups. Press 3 JR mints into the center of each cupcake. Bake for 22-25 minutes or until toothpick comes mostly clean from center. Let cool completely and frost with your favorite vanilla or chocolate frosting. Press a JR mint on top of each cupcake. Makes 24 cupcakes

Friday, September 11, 2009

Crockpot Coconut Curry Beef

Crockpot Coconut Curry Beef
adapted from A Year of Slow Cooking

1 13.5-oz can coconut milk
1 T brown sugar
1 T soy sauce

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 yellow onion, quartered
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 potato, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
3 carrots, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 celery stalk cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1 1/2 lbs of lean beef (such as top round), cut into 1 inch pieces

Add all ingredients into a slow cooker. Cook on high for 4 to 5 hours or low 8 to 10 hours. Serve over rice.

Personally I wasn't a fan of this meal but my husband loved it. I guess it is just personal taste.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Carrot Cake

Carrot Cake
Adapted from

4 eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 cups grated carrots
1/2 cup butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a muffin pan with liners and spray each one with cooking spray. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, apple sauce, white sugar, brown sugar, and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in carrots. Pour into prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center cupcake comes out clean. Let cool completely.

To Make Frosting: In a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Frost the cooled cupcakes.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Banana Crumb Muffins

Banana Crumb Muffins

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 bananas, mashed
3/4 cup white sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly grease 10 muffin cups, or line with muffin papers. In a large bowl, mix together 1 1/2 cups flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, beat together bananas, sugar, egg and melted butter. Stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture just until moistened. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and cinnamon. Cut in 1 tablespoon butter until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Sprinkle topping over muffins. Bake in preheated oven for 18 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of a muffin comes out clean.

I followed the directions exactly as listed on The muffins were perfect. I wouldn't change a thing. This is a great way to use up bananas before they turn bad.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Baked Lemon Pasta

Baked Lemon Pasta


1 pound thin spaghetti
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 lemon
2 cups sour cream
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste if desired
Plenty of grated Parmesan cheese
Flat leaf parsley, chopped
Extra lemon juice

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook spaghetti until al dente.
In a skillet, melt butter with olive oil over LOW HEAT.
When butter is melted, add minced garlic.
Squeeze lemon juice into the pan. Turn off heat.
Add sour cream and stir mixture together. Add lemon zest and salt. Taste, then add more salt if necessary.
Pour mixture over drained spaghetti and stir together, then pour spaghetti into an oven safe dish.
Bake, covered, for 15 minutes. Then remove foil and bake for an additional 7 to 10 minutes. (Don’t bake too long or the pasta will dry out.)
When you remove it from the oven, squeeze a little more lemon juice over the top.
Top generously with Parmesan cheese, then chopped parsley.
Give it a final squeeze of lemon juice at the end.