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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Cheese Casserole Bread


This is a yeast bread that is super simple to make. You don't even knead it, just beat it with a spoon or use a mixer.
It is great served along side soup or salad.

Makes 2 loaves baked in 1 quart casserole dishes

Ingredients:
4 - 5 cups all purpose flour
3 Tablespoons sugar
1 Tablespoon salt
2 packages dry yeast( 4-1/2 teaspoons, by measure)
2 cups water
1/3 cup dry non-fat milk
2 Tablespoons shortening
1-1/2 cups grated Cheddar cheese
1 egg, beaten

In a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, sugar, salt, and yeast.
In a saucepan or microwavable bowl mix the water, dry milk, and shortening. Heat just until warm. Add it to the dry ingredients and beat with a spoon or with a mixer for a couple minutes.
Add the cheese, egg, and about a half cup flour to make a thick batter and stir or mix again for another couple minutes.
With the spoon, stir in another couple cups of flour. Just so the batter is stiff but manageable.
Cover the dough and put it in a warm place and let the dough double in size. This will take about 40 minutes or so.
Now, you need to grease your two casseroles pretty well.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Stir down the batter and beat vigorously for about 30 minutes.
Divide among the two casseroles.
Make for 45 minutes. To check use a toothpick inserted in the center. It will come out clean dry.
Take out and remove from pans to a wire rack to cool.
Let them sit for probably 5 - 10 minutes before cutting. Serve in wedges or slices.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Soft Molasses Cookies


 








 
These cookies are similar in taste to ginger snaps, only soft.
They are really good.

Ingredients:

1 cup unsalted butter(2 sticks), softened
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup molasses
2-1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/4 teaspoons cinnamon
1-1/4 teaspoons ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
2 eggs
3-1/2 cups all purpose flour

In a large mixing bowl cream the butter and sugar. Add the molasses and mix well. Now add the baking soda, salt, and spices. Add the eggs, one at a time. Make sure to get the first egg mixed in well before adding the second one.
Stir in the flour.
Cover the bowl and refrigerate the dough for 1-2 hours until dough is easy to handle.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Lightly grease cookie sheets.

You will also need a small bowl with some sugar in it.

Shape cookie dough into approximately 1-1/2 inch balls.
Roll the balls of dough in the sugar and place on the cookie sheets.
Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes. Cookies will be very soft, but that is OK.
Cool the cookies on the pan for 10 minutes and remove to rack to cool completely.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Candy Cookies


Candy cookies are a yummy treat. Use whatever kind of candy coated chocolate you have. It's all good no matter what brand you use.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.
You will need a couple ungreased cookie sheets.

Ingredients:

1/3 cup margarine or butter, softened
1/3 cup shortening
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
1-1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup candy coated chocolate candies

Cream together butter, shortening, and sugars. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract. Stir in the flour, baking soda, and salt. Add the m&ms and incorporate well.
Drop dough by heaping teaspoons- or use a small size cookie scoop- onto the cookie sheets.
Bake 8-10 minutes, until light brown.
The centers will be soft, but will finish cookie upon removal from oven.
Cool a minute or two on the sheets than remove to finish cooling.
You will get 2-1/2 - 3 dozen cookies.

You can also make bars by pressing the dough into a 13x9 inch cake pan and baking 20 minutes, until golden.

Yummy!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Bacon-Cheese Fries


 






  These fries are so good. They are cheesy and bacony and so very, very yummy.


You will need a deep fryer or deep pan filled with oil.
Heat the oil to 350 degrees F.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.

Ingredients:

3 unpeeled medium size russet potatoes
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese
3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

Clean the potatoes, but don't peel. Slice them into thick fries. You should get 12-15 slices per potato. Maybe more, if you have bigger potatoes.
Fry the fries in the hot oil. To make sure they get crisp, you fry them for about a minute and remove from oil and drain. Let cool for about 10 minutes. Now, fry them in the oil for another 5 minutes. They will be a light golden brown color.
Drain them.
Put them on a baking sheet.
Sprinkle the cheese and bacon bits over the fries.
Bake in the preheated oven for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serve with ranch dressing if you like.

This will feed about 4 as an appetizer. If you want to make more just slice up an extra potato, cook and extra slice of bacon, and add a little more cheese.
So good!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Harvest Pumpkin Bars

These pumpkin bars are big on pumpkin flavor and are
made extremely tasty with a cream cheese frosting.
For an extra touch you can sprinkle the frosting with crystalized ginger or chopped pecans.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F
Lightly grease a 9x9 inch or 11x7 inch baking pan

Ingredients:

Bars

1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 cup white sugar
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour

Put everything in a bowl except for the flour. Cream it together well. Add the flour and stir just until smooth.
Spread the batter in the prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes until golden brown and the bars test done with a toothpick inserted into the middle of the bars.
Let cool completely and than frost.

Cream Cheese Frosting

4 oz cream cheese ( 1/2 of a large brick), softened
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1-3/4 powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-4 Tablespoon finely diced crystallized ginger( optional)
2-4 Tablespoons chopped pecans( optional)

In a medium bowl cream together the butter and cream cheese. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract and beat until smooth.
Spread over the cooled bars and sprinkle with the ginger and pecans if desired.
Cut into bars and enjoy!




Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Peanut Butter Smoothies




 These are bars. Very yummy, peanut buttery bars.
They are very addictive and you can have them done in less than an hour.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
Lightly grease a 9x9 square pan
Baking time is approximately 30 minutes

Ingredients:

6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup peanut butter- you can use either creamy or chunky
1 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, or lightly salted peanuts (picture shows them with chocolate chips)
In a small bowl, combine the flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.
In a medium bowl cream the butter and peanut butter until smooth. Add the sugars and beat well. Beat in the eggs one at a time, making sure the first one is well incorporated before adding the next one. Stir in the vanilla extract.
Stir in the flour mixture until smooth. Add chips or peanuts.
Put in the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until bars start to come away from the edges of the pan.
Cool completely in the pan.
Cut in the size you want.

Happy snacking!




Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Spanish Rice


This is a favorite dish of mine. My mom used to make it a lot as I was growing up. In fact, this was the first meal I ever made all by myself.

Ingredients:

2 cups water
1 cup long grain rice
1 pound ground beef, turkey, or venison
1 white or yellow onion, chopped
1 Anaheim Chile or green pepper, chopped- optional
salt to taste
pepper to taste
1 teaspoon chili powder
scant 1/3 cup white sugar- optional
28-32 oz. tomato juice

In a medium pan add 2 cups water and season with small amount of salt. When it comes to a boil, add the 1 cup rice. Cover and turn down heat. Cook for 15 minutes, or until the water is completely absorbed. Remove from heat.
In a large skillet or dutch oven, cook the ground beef with the onion and pepper. Season with the salt and pepper as you cook it.
Drain the meat, if needed.
When the meat is cooked, add the rice to the pan. Pour in the tomato juice. I like it a bit saucier so I use the full quart, but you can use a bit less.
Add the chili powder and optional sugar. Taste and add more salt and pepper if you like.
Turn on heat to medium high and stir occasionally. When the mixture comes to a boil, turn the heat down. Continue to cook about 30 minutes or until you get the consistency you want. Also, continue to stir every once in a while.
It is important to have the heat on low at this point or you could scorch the bottom and ruin it.
This makes a nice big pot and will feed 5 people unless you have big eaters in the house.
I hope you enjoy this as much as I do.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Rice Krispies Treats

These are the bars you will remember from your childhood.
They are super simple to make and also super yummy.

You will need a 13x9 size pan, buttered or sprayed with cooking spray.
If you want a thicker bar use a smaller pan size.

Ingredients:

3 Tablespoons margarine
1-10oz. package regular size marshmallows. This is 40 marshmallows. You can also use 4 cups of miniature marshmallows.
6 cups Rice Krispies cereal

In a large saucepan melt the margarine and add marshmallows and stir til completed melted.
You can also melt margarine and marshmallows in a large bowl in the microwave. Heat on high for 2 minutes. Stir and heat an additional minute. Stir til completely smooth.
To the melted marshmallows, add the cereal and stir til well coated.
Press the cereal mixture into the prepared pan with a buttered spatula or buttered hands.
When cooled to room temperature, cut into bars.
20-24 bars.

Lemon Bundt Cake


This cake is not overly lemony, but it has a glaze that really gives it a big shot of lemon flavor.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Grease and flour a bundt or tube pan.

Ingredients:

1 cup softened butter or margarine
2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
1-1/2 teaspoons lemon extract
1-1/2 vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt- if using salted butter or margarine do not use
1 cup milk
1 Tablespoon grated lemon peel- optional

Glaze:
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 Tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
3/4 cup granulated sugar

Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar. Add eggs, beating one egg in completely before adding the next one. Mix in the extracts.
Add the milk and the flour mixture alternately beginning and ending with the milk. Stir in the lemon peel, if you are using.
Pour into the prepared pan.
Bake for 60-70 minutes til it tests done with a toothpick inserted near the center.
Cool for 10 minutes. Invert pan onto a wire rack for 10 more minutes.
Put waxed paper or foil underneath rack to catch extra glaze.
Let the cake cool slightly.
Combine glaze ingredients.
Drizzle over the warm cake with a spoon.
OR
If you have a pastry brush, I recommend you brush the glaze on the cake.
More will stay on the cake instead of ending up on the waxed paper.

Serves 12-16.