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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Teriyaki and Pineapple Chicken

I was feeling like some TERIYAKI (say it in a ninja voice), so I went to my favorite website: and found this one! I served it with some brown rice.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
1 green bell pepper, sliced thin
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced thin
1 red bell pepper, sliced thin
1 1/4 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
1 onion, chopped
1 cup teriyaki sauce
1 (8 ounce) can pineapple chunks, undrained
1 teaspoon garlic powder (I used chopped garlic)
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (If you don't like lots of heat, reduce this to a 1/2 teaspoon)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour


1.Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the chicken until no longer pink in the center and the juices run clear, 7 to 10 minutes.

2.Place the green bell pepper, yellow bell pepper, red bell pepper, mushrooms, onion, teriyaki sauce, pineapple chunks with the juice, garlic powder, and crushed red pepper into the wok, and turn the heat to medium. Bring to a simmer, stir in the flour, and continue simmering 15 minutes until thickened.

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So, i found this photo on my phone. Don't quite remember what I cooked here. But, it looks pretty tasty. It might be THIS. I think I used Cream of Mushroom Soup with some extra Mushies (instead of cream of chix) and no chedda cheeEze.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Creamy Broccoli Shells

Isn't broccoli delicious? Especially when it's mixed with cheese and pasta!!! I was initially going for Jessica's Broccoli and Cheese Campanelle but didn't quite make it here for lack of cheddar and jack, and my use of the hand blender (love that thing!)
1 head broccoli, cut into florets
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp paprika
1 tbsp dried basil
fresh ground pepper
1 1/2 cups broth
2 tbsp cream cheese (yay I found cream cheese here!)
1 handful shredded swiss (or jack or cheddar)
freshly grated parmesan
some ham or cooked chopped bacon or chicken
500g pasta shells (I used gnocchi)
1. In a heavy based pan, sautée the onions and garlic in the EVOO until translucent, and add the broccoli, paprika, and basil. Stir around until nicely colored. While doing this, start boiling your water for the pasta.
2. Pour in the broth (broccoli should not be drowning.. just 3/4 covered in broth) and let simmer until broccoli is tender (10-15 minutes?).
3. Use an immersible hand blender to blend the mixture until smooth. Stir in the cream cheese and let simmer until sauce is of desired thickness. Add the meat, shredded swiss, and fresh ground pepper and heat through. If too thick, add more broth. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
4. When pasta is done cooking, drain and toss with the sauce.

Serve with some freshly grated parmesan and some delicious bread for cleaning up the plate!

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Tortilla Soup

I owe my soup fixation to this blog. I just love souping. Maliya loves soup, Easton can eat soup- soup is a great all around dish. It can be a starter, side or main dish. You can load it up with nutritious ingredients for the kiddos! Makes great leftovers. And you really can't go wrong. You really don't need a recipe to follow- just get yourself a base going and add whatever you want to it. Blend it up to make a bisque or pile on the veges- The world it yours. I think we should consider a separate Soup version of this blog. Friends and Soupies forever. Thoughts? =) Anyway, it's too damn hot in PS to be makin soups all the time. But, i can't wait to start refining my Gazpacho recipe!

And without further ado, ladies and gentlemen...tortilla soup:

Ingredients (don't let anything hold you back here, people. Cut stuff you don't like/don't have. Add stuff you want. I learned here that i love hominy. Threw the leftover can on my salads throughout the week)

  • 3/4 onion, chopped
  • 2-1/4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-1/4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 3/4 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 3/4 (10.5 ounce) can condensed chicken broth
  • 3/4 cup and 3 tablespoons water
  • 3/4 cup whole corn kernels, cooked
  • 3/4 cup white hominy
  • 3/4 (4 ounce) can chopped green chile peppers
  • 3/4 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1-1/2 boneless chicken breast halves, cooked and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • crushed tortilla chips
  • sliced avocado
  • shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • chopped green onions


  1. In a medium stock pot, heat oil over medium heat. Saute onion and garlic in oil until soft. Stir in chili powder, oregano, tomatoes, broth, and water. Bring to a boil, and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Stir in corn, hominy, chiles, beans, cilantro, and chicken. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  3. Ladle soup into individual serving bowls, and top with crushed tortilla chips, avocado slices, cheese, and chopped green onion.

    *remove the cheese and chips and this is fight food

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Sunday, April 24, 2011

Perfect Mashed Potatoes, My Deer

I can't really take the credit for the deer in the plate. I bought it already marinating in this delicious morilles mushroom sauce. All I did was sear it and eat.. it was so tender and delicious!
Since it's Easter, they put out all this fancy food at the store and I couldn't help myself. Come on, deer? How often do you get to eat that?
I did, however, make my own mashed potatoes from scratch! They are the best ever.
My mashed potatoes served 6
2 lbs potatoes, scrubbed but not peeled
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp butter
salt/fresh ground pepper
handful fresh chopped parsley
1. Steam the potatoes with the skin on. How to do this? I used my pressure cooker's steamer basket and let it pressure for 10 minutes. If you have a steamer, check the cooking time. I have no idea.
2. Burn the skin off your fingers peeling your cooked potatoes. I suggest letting them cool a little and go about the rest of your meal. There is a good reason for peeling them after and not before, and that reason is TASTE.
3. Once your potatoes are all peeled, put them in a pot and mash with a potato masher (or fork).
4. Using a whisk, incorporate the butter, milk, and cream while whisking on low heat (mostly to heat them back up from the cool down they got earlier). The whisking puts air bubbles into the potatoes so seem more fluffy and light than heavy and weighing you down after you eat them. Add the parsley, salt and pepper and adjust the liquids accordingly.

Ta da! The perfect mashed potatoes.
I served this with my deer and roasted broccoli. My guests were pleased. Oh and I had also made an appetizer spread with cauliflower but completely forgot to photograph it, so maybe next time!
Meanwhile, look how lovely my deer was!

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Red Velvet Cupcakes

Yum, Red Velvet. Mm. I didn't realize this was a Paula Deen recipe until i was typing it out. So, you know what that means... Lots of... Love. =) I learned the key ingredient here is Red Food Coloring- and lots of it. Also learned that if you don't have Buttermilk, no sweat. All you have to do is type "substit" in your Google browser and "Substitute for Buttermilk" comes right up: Milk, White Vinegar (and cream if you have it).


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring
  • 1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 1 pound cream cheese, softened
  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
  • Chopped pecans and fresh raspberries or strawberries, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 (12-cup) muffin pans with cupcake papers.
In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In a large bowl gently beat together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla with a handheld electric mixer. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet and mix until smooth and thoroughly combined.
Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake tins about 2/3 filled. Bake in oven for about 20 to 22 minutes, turning the pans once, half way through. Test the cupcakes with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.
For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla together until smooth. Add the sugar and on low speed, beat until incorporated. Increase the speed to high and mix until very light and fluffy.
Garnish with chopped pecans and a fresh raspberry or strawberry.

(Maliya helped me decorate these =) )

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

White Choco-Coco Cake

Ah.. finally.. a successful dessert! My lovely guest even had seconds! I'm realizing how practical a kitchen scale is for baking... not just for weighing bearded dragons! This is another one of my friend Audrey's recipes. I now weight the ingredients because when using cups and volume measurements, you never know if you're getting it exactly right.
Serves 6
200g white chocolate, broken into pieces
95g butter
75g powdered sugar
50g flour
2 eggs
2 tbsp dried coconut
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Butter and flour your cake mold. I used 6 silicone cupcake molds.. Audry used 1 rectangular silicone cake mold.
2. Beat the eggs with the sugar. Rain the flour in (can you say that?)
3. Melt the chocolate with the butter in the microwave or in a sauce pan over low heat.
4. Add the melted chocolate and butter into the batter along with the coconut. Put all this in the fridge for a few hours. This will allow the chocolate to get caramelly with the sugar in the mold.
5. Pour into the molds and cook 10-15 minutes.

Mine went in for 15 and were perfectly gooey inside

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Chicken Asparagus Gnocchi

I love my dad! He comes up with the coolest recipe ideas off the top of his head. He swung by France for a few days after his trip to Italy and really wanted to make dinner on his first night here. I asked him, "what do you want to make?" and he just answered, "well lets just see what's fresh at the store and it will come together." Well, it sure did! Gnocci is an Italian pasta made with potatoes. This is only the 2nd time I've tried it and now I will buy it regularly. It's a nice spin off regular pasta or potatoes.
Serves 6
1 bunch fresh asparagus, cut up crosswise
1 bunch fresh basil
1 cooked rotisserie chicken, meat only
1 onion, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp thyme
1 1/2 cups milk
Freshly grated parmesan
salt/fresh ground pepper
400g cooked Gnocci (mine was fresh)
1. Sautée your onion and garlic in the EVOO until golden, and add the cut asparagus. Stir around about 10 minutes, deglazing with whatever you want so nothing sticks.
2. Add the thyme and milk. Bring to a boil and then simmer until asparagus is cooked but still crunchy (5-10 minutes).
3. Turn off the heat, add the basil, and use an immersible hand blender to blend away! Add the chicken and salt and pepper to taste.
4. Stir in your cooked gnocci and heat through.

Serve hot with freshly grated parmesan.
The cooked asparagus and the fresh basil make a great combination! This was a hit... and the leftovers were even better!!

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

Roasted Broccoli

I've been making my D-Day cutlets a lot lately, so I decided to change up the greens this time. Sometimes I use spinach, or nothing at all depending on what's in the fridge, but this time, I was in the mood for Roasted Broccoli!! It's actually pretty easy but mighty tasty.
as much fresh broccoli as you want, cut into florets
3 cloves garlic
salt/fresh ground pepper
grated parmesan cheese
1 lemon
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F
2. Only wash the broccoli if it is very dirty, otherwise, don't bother. The oven will kill the germs. If you do wash, be sure to dry very well.
3. Toss the florets in some EVOO, salt, pepper, and grated garlic cloves so they are covered. Place on a baking sheet and roast for about 15 minutes or until desired tenderness.
4. Take out of the oven and squeeze some lemon juice and some grated parmesan.

Serve as a side dish to whatever you want!
These were delicious. I don't think I'll ever cook broccoli any other way. So wonderful, in fact, that I tried it with cauliflower too and it came out great. I changed up my D-Day cutlets, too. I used regular fresh mushrooms instead of wild, and I used a pork filet instead of turkey. Yum!

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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Mediterranean Chopped Salad with Shrimp & Chickpeas

I was really craving a nice crispy salad, and found this one in Real Simple. I decided to give it a whirl...very refreshing!


1/2 head of Romaine lettuce, cut crosswise into thin strips (8 cups)
1 pound cooked peeled and deveined medium shrimp, cut in half crosswise
1/2 English cucumber, chopped
1 15.5-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed, or a heaping 1/2 cup dried chickpeas, soaked and cooked
1/2 medium sweet onion, chopped
3/4 cup crumbled Feta (about 3 ounces)
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved
2 cups pita chips, broken into pieces
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Kosher salt and black pepper

In a large bowl, toss the lettuce, shrimp, cucumber, chickpeas, onion, feta, olives, and pita chips with oil, vinegar, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and paper.

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Sausages with smashed potatoes & Cornichons

I also made this awhile ago...better late than never, right? ;) Okay, first what the hell are Cornichons!?? Are they Spanish, are they American?? Again, Google always comes through...and I found that they are actually pickles! Why, couldn't they just say that in the recipe!? I guess, I learned my something new that day, as well as, looked like a crazy women walking up and down the aisles looking for those darn things. Anyways, I found this yummy recipe in Real Simple magazine. It was delish, easy and a money saver, seriously under $3 a serving. Try it.

Stuff Needed

1-1/2 pounds small red potatoes (about 18), halved
Kosher salt and black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
8 Italian Sausage links (about 1-1/2 pounds total)
1/2 cup cornichons, chopped, plus 3 tablespoons of the brine
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 small sweet onion (such as Vidalia or Walla Walla), chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

How to do it

1. Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and add enough cold water to cover. Bring to boil and add 2 teaspoons salt. Reduce heat and simmer until tender, 15 to 18 minutes; drain.

2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sausages and cook, turning occasionally, until browned and cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the cornichon brine, mustard, the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Add the potatoes, cornichons, onion, and parsley and mix, mashing gently. Cut the sausages into large pieces and serve with the potatoes.

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Cha-Cha-Chicken Enchiladas!!

A long time ago, I made my very first chicken enchiladas. Or first any enchiladas for that matter. Naturally they turned out AHHH-MAZING. ;) And of course they were super easy, cuz we all know that's the only way I cook. I even learned how to make shredded chicken, just as easy as the enchiladas (Google what would I do without you!?) I got this delicious recipe from my fav. food site - It goes a little like this:


1 (16 ounce) can refried beans
10 (8 inch) flour tortillas
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 cup sour cream
3 cups cubed cooked chicken
3 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1 (14.5 ounce) can enchilada sauce
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/4 cup sliced ripe olives
Shredded Lettuce

Spread about 2 tablespoons of beans on each tortilla. Combine soup and sour cream; stir in chicken. Spoon 1/3 to 1/2 cup down the center of each tortilla; top with 1 tablespoon cheese. Roll up and place seam side down in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Pour enchilada sauce over top; sprinkle with onions, olives and remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes or until heated through. Just 
before serving, sprinkle lettuce around enchiladas if desired.  
Producto Terminato - es Muy Bueno!! 

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Saturday, April 9, 2011

Corn Bisque

Nothing compliments a cool and cloudy day like some home-fresh soup. Corn kernels and chopped bell pepps ad texture and color to this bisque recipe.

For this recipe, you will need:
4tbls butter
2 cups chopped onion
1/2 cup diced carrot
1/2 cup diced celery
7 1/2 cups corn kernals (You can use frozen... if you so desire)
1 tsp rosemary
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
6 cups chx broth
1 cup half and half
1 red bell pepper chopped

To make:
1. Melt 3 tbls butter in a big pot over medium heat. Add onions, carrots, celery and saute for 3 mins. Add 5.5 cups of the corn, rosemary, and cayenne- saute for 2 mins. Add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low , simmer uncovered for 30 mins.

2.In batches, blend the soup in a blender. Return to pot and add the half and half and the remaining corn kernels. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Melt the remaining butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add chopped bell pepps and saute until almost tender (about 5 mins). Stir the bell peppers into the soup.

4. Bring soup to simmer. Serve.

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Cake Minus Bakery

So yesterday was my Breeze-way-mate's 28th Birthday Party and I was elected to bring the cake. Two requests: Pink & Funfetti. After my first real attempt at decorating using Fondant in November, for my daughter SaeLeighs 3rd Birthday, my goal was to cut down my 8 hour prep time! haha This cake was considerably smaller with an 8" base and 6" top tier so that helped a great deal. I took a deep breath, poured a glass of sparkling wine and the mixing, greasing and dusting began. As I began gathering my materials to decorate, I realized my decor supplies were in the trunk of my car an hour away! No rolling pin, no icing tips- NADA! Since I was a glass or so in and it was about midnight I decided I would have to "figure it out." So- pictured above is the final product made with my wine bottle rolling pin, butter knife icer, wash cloth & straight pin even bake strips, bread knife cake leveler and my pairing knife fondant trimmer. Ghetto bakery ENGAGE!

Oh yeah and I did end up cutting down my prep time. Took me about 2.5 hours minus cooling time in the fridge. SUCCESS

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Better Chocolate Melt

I made Audrey's dessert again, and it did come out better this time!

A little over 8 minutes. Next time I'll do even better. I'm finally starting to get the hang of desserts and the way my oven handles them. My guests were proud of me.

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