Saturday, January 23, 2010

Cheesy Broccoli Pockets

This was a great dinner! I found the recipe here. It said to use frozen dough, but I opted to make my own. I let the dough rise the first time, then made them into the pockets, so it took a little planning. I may have used a little more cheese than the recipe called for...I didn't measure it. These reheated great the next day.
John's Rating: 9
1 large head of broccoli, cut into small pieces, cooked
2 tsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese (I use the fresh stuff...NOT the kind in the shaker can)
1 Tbsp. Italian Seasoning
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 batch roll dough
Garlic Salt
chicken, shredded or chopped
butter

--Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease baking sheets. Cook broccoli and drain well. In a medium skillet, heat oil over low heat and add garlic, saute for 2 minutes. Add broccoli. Cook, stirring until moisture has evaporated--about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Cool slightly. Add in seasoning, chicken and cheese. Mix well. On a lightly floured surface, divide dough into 6 pieces; roll out each piece to form a 6-inch circle. Spoon an equal amount of broccoli mixture in the center of each circle. Fold dough over filling to form a half circle. Press edges with a fork to seal; prick a few holes in pocket tops. Sprinkle tops of dough with garlic salt. Place pockets on prepared baking sheets. Bake until golden, about 25 minutes. Spread a little bit of melted butter on top right after they come out of the oven. Serve warm.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Raspberry Brownies

I found this in my recipe pile and finally gave it a try. It was better the first 2 days because the brownie softened the longer it sat so it was more "fudgy". It was really rich, so it won't be made again here until we have lots more people to help eat it :) It was good though!



1 pkg. brownie mix (the size that makes a 9x13 pan)
1 pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup seedless raspberry preserves
1 ounce unsweetened baking chocolate
1 Tbsp. butter

Heat oven to 350 and prepare brownie mix as directed on package for fudgelike brownies. Bake in a 9x13 pan. Cool completely.

Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar and preserves in small bowl on med. speed until smooth. Spread over brownies. Refrigerate 15 minutes.

Microwave chocolate and butter in small bowl about 1 minute or until mixture can be stirred smooth. Drizzle over brownies. Refrigerate 1 hour or until chocolate is firm. Cut and serve.

Store covered in refrigerator.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Mandarin Chicken Sauce

I got this from a ward cookbook. We liked that it wasn't as sweet at sweet and sour sauce, but was close to it and a great chinese dish with the tempura batterd chicken.
John's Rating: 9

2 1/4 cups sugar (I might try using just 2 cups next time)
1 pint crushed tomatoes
1/4 tsp. grated fresh ginger
1 cup cider vinegar
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 onion
salt to taste
dash of cayenne pepper (I used 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper instead b/c I didn't have cayenne)
1 cup crushed pineapple

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a rolling boil. Let simmer 20 minutes. Pour into VitaMix and blend in a few Tbsp. of cornstarch to thicken.

Serve over tempura battered chicken.

**Remaining sauce can be frozen.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Tempura Batter

I got this from a ward cookbook. It works awesome! It tastes better than our favorite Chinese restaurant.
John Rating: 10!!

1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 c. cold water
1 egg
Several ice cubes

Mix together dry ingredients. In separate bowl, beat egg slightly and mix with cold water. Add flour mixture and stir only until mixed. (Should look like muffin batter) Add several ice cubes. Dip meat or vegetables and deep fry in hot oil until lightly browned, turning once. Drain on paper towel. Serve hot.

**You need precooked chicken and I found that cut, chilled chicken worked best for a nice crispy coating. You also need to make sure the chicken in well drained, almost "dry" so the batter will really stick to it.

**I also found that halving this recipe was plenty for my family.

Friday, January 15, 2010

CinnaBun Popcorn

I had this bookmarked from Best Bites, which has a great tutorial if you want one. Then Kara's Kitchen Creations posted it again and motivated me to try it. After I made a pan, I knew I had to make a second batch (I made it to give for some gifts) John came home and immediately ruined his dinner with it :) You should try it...it's so yummy! The original recipe calls for pecans, but we don't like them so this is how I made it:

John's Rating: 9
12 cups popped popcorn (about 1/2 cup unpopped)
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup soft butter
1tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp baking soda
White chocolate (about 4 oz)

Place popcorn large bowl and set aside. **To get rid of all the unpopped kernels, place a grid cooling rack over your bowl of popcorn. Invert it and shake. The kernels will all fall through the holes but the popcorn won't fit. It works great!

Preheat oven to 250

Combine brown sugar and cinnamon in a large glass bowl. Mix well. Add butter and corn syrup. Microwave on high for 30 seconds; stir to combine. Return to microwave and heat for 2 minutes. Remove and stir. Microwave for 2 more minutes. Stir in vanilla and baking soda. Mixture will foam. Pour caramel mixture over popcorn and pecans and stir till everything is well coated. Line a jelly roll pan with foil and spray with non-stick spray. Pour popcorn onto foil. Place in oven and bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Melt white chocolate and drizzle with a fork over popcorn mixture. When chocolate is set and popcorn is cool, break into chunks. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Panera Broccoli Cheese Soup

This is my favorite broccoli soup! I found it on recipezaar and finally got around to trying it--YUM! I served it with some warm wheat bread.
John's Rating: 9

5 tablespoons melted butter
1 medium chopped onion
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
2 cups chicken stock
1 large head of fresh broccoli
2 carrots, julienned
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
8 ounces grated sharp cheddar cheese
salt and pepper

Sauté onion in butter. Add flour using a whisk over medium heat for 3-5 minutes. Stir constantly and add the milk. Add the chicken stock. Blend in VitaMix to puree onion. Simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the broccoli and carrots. Cook over low heat 20-25 minutes. Add salt and pepper. Can be puréed in a blender but I don't. Return to heat and add cheese. Stir in nutmeg.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Pizza Spirals

I had some cresent rolls to use that I got at a super price, so I tried this recipe. I double the recipe, but next time with just make a single batch. I made mine with triple meat: Pepperoni, Sausage, and Bacon. So I served it with a large side salad. John really liked it...my kids were not thrilled because it didn't "look like pizza" *Sigh
1 (8 ounce) package refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
3/4 cup chopped low-fat pepperoni
8 teaspoons pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce
5 teaspoons warmed low-fat cream cheese
2 teaspoons oregano
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1 1/2 cups shredded lowfat mozzarella cheese
any other fillings: bell pepper or ground beef, etc, to taste
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Unroll dough into 4 long rectangles.
Press diagonal perforations firmly to seal.
Spread warmed cream cheese evenly on dough.
Spread pizza sauce evenly on top of cream cheese.
Add oregano and garlic spreading evenly over all.
Sprinkle chopped pepperoni over all.
Add any extra ingredients you would like.
Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.
Roll up each rectangle starting at the shortest side, press and seal firmly.

Cut each of the 4 rolls into 5 slices to make 20 slices.
Spray cookie sheet or muffin tins with non-stick cooking spray.
Place cut side down on sprayed cookie sheet or muffin tins. Careful, they can be sticky!
Bake 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove from cookie sheet.
Can be served warm or cooled and placed in the freezer.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Yum Yums

This reminds me of my Grandma who made tons of chocolates. This is probably the simplest one. She rolled hers in chopped nuts or finely shredded coconut. I rolled mine in crushed oreos (we don't care for nuts much and John doesn't like coconut). These were a great treat for me over the Christmas season!3 lg Hershey Chocolate Bars (24 oz of chocolate total)
Melt chocolate bars in a double boiler (just melt don't get too hot)Fold melted chocolate into 13 oz carton of cool whip thawed. As mixture thickens roll into balls and then roll balls in crushed vanilla wafers or crushed nuts or coconut.

The following was hand written on the back of Grandma's recipe card:
Chocolate bar 5 oz cool whip
2 Chocolate bars 9 oz cool whip
3 Chocolate bars 13 oz cool whip

**I only used one chocolate bar to one tub of cool whip. It was a lighter chocolate flavor, but worked great for me since I rolled them in oreos!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Oreo Truffles

I discovered these treats last year...Love them! 1 pkg. oreos
1 pkg. cream cheese

Dump both in mixer and blend until well mixed. Use a cookie scoop to scoop and scoop the oreo mixture into round balls. Put them in the freezer until hard. Dip in melted white chocolate. To with crushed oreos before the chocolate sets.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Barkies

After one of my friends dropped off some sweet Christmas goodies, my husband could not seem to stop raving about these....I was so glad she posted them on her blog and I whipped up a batch Christmas Eve (while John was out doing his Christmas shopping) and put them all in a large ziplock, then gift bagged for John...he was pleased Christmas morning :) (Thanks Julie!!)
1 c. sugar
1 c. karo syrup
2 c. crunchy peanut butter
6 c. Rice Krispies
White Chocolate

In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, mix sugar and karo syrup. Stirring constantly, bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until smooth. Put rice krispies in large bowl and pour peanut butter mixture over it. Stir to coat well. Using small scoop (or roll into 1 inch balls, be careful it will be hot) place on wax paper. Let cool.

Melt white chocolate. Stir until smooth. After balls are cool, dip bottom into chocolate and set back down on wax paper. Let cool. Store in tightly covered container.
*I had a little chocolate left and drizzled it over the top of these....I really liked how it made them look!