Saturday, November 29, 2008

Spanish Rice

Heat 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil (I prefer to use rendered bacon fat if handy) over med-hi heat until shimmering. Add some (1/2 cup) small dice onion and 1/2 bell pepper (small dice or julienne) and saute 5 minutes. Add 1 cup of white rice and saute 5 minutes more. Add 2 tsp of minced garlic, 1 tsp of cumin, and 1 tsp of chili powder (more or less for spice) and saute 60 seconds or until fragrant. Pour in 1/2 c tomato sauce and 2 cups of chicken stock (I like Kitchen Basics brand). Stir and bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to low. Don't peek for at least 15 minutes (usually more like 20). When it's done, fluff with a fork and remove from heat and let stand covered for 5 minutes more.

Mexican Lasagna

adapted from Pioneer Woman

1 dozen flour tortillas, cut in quarters
8 oz salsa verde (I like Herdez)
1 1/2 # lean ground beef
1 lg onion, small dice
1 lg bell pepper, small dice
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 can beans, drained (I like black or pinto)
24 oz shredded cheese (I like Mexican blend)
1 recipe Spanish rice
3 cups frozen whole kernel corn
8 oz enchilada sauce or 1 recipe ranchero sauce

Preheat oven to 375. Prepare taco meat. brown ground beef with onion, garlic, and bell pepper on stove, drain fat and return to pan. Add taco seasoning and simmer with water according to package directions. Spread half of salsa verde on bottom of 9x13 pan. Layer one-third of tortillas over salsa verde. Spread rice over the tortillas, followed by 8 oz shredded cheese. Layer another third of tortilla quarters over cheese. Pour the rest of the salsa verde over the tortillas. Spread taco meat over the tortillas. Top with corn, then 8 oz cheese, then beans. Layer remaining tortillas on top, then top with remaining cheese. Pour ranchero/enchilada sauce over top and bake until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


Don't dismiss this as an improbable combination; the mellow, distinctive taste of pumpkin is a delightful counterpoint to the chocolate chips. But if you're still anxious about the medley, substitute cinnamon chips, which will give you a much more traditional taste. For a more complex taste, add 1/4 cup Toffee Flavored Bits to the muffins along with the chocolate chips; your family will be back for seconds, guaranteed!

1 2/3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 1/3 cups Baker's Special sugar or granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup chocolate chips or cinnamon chips
1/4 cup Toffee Flavored Bits (optional)
1/2 cup diced walnuts or pecans
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup melted butter or melted vegetable shortening; OR 1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 cup (half of a 15-ounce can) solid-pack pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/3 cup water

1 cup glazing or confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon milk
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg. Stir in the chips and bits of your choice. In a separate bowl, whisk together the vanilla, melted fat, eggs, pumpkin and water. Make a well in the dry ingredients, fill it with the liquid ingredients, and mix vigorously until everything is well-blended, scraping the bottom and sides of the bowl as you go.

Spoon the batter into the lightly greased or paper-lined cups of a 12-cup muffin pan. The muffin cups should be filled quite full, using a generously rounded 1/4-cup of batter for each muffin. Bake the muffins in a preheated 350°F oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Remove the muffins from the oven; let them cool for 5 minutes, then transfer them from the pan to a rack to cool completely. Store them in a plastic bag or other airtight container. Just before serving, stir together the glaze ingredients, and drizzle over the muffins. Yield: 12 muffins.

Shannon's note: Yield is very conservative. I get about 18 muffins. When I forego the glaze, I usually add 1/2 tsp of cinnamon to the muffin batter.

Squash Casserole

Squash Casserole
(serves 12 - 14 - I usually make half, so have noted my subs)

3 lbs yellow squash (I use about 3 or 4 crookneck squash, depending on the size)
1 1/2 lbs zucchini (I use one large one)
2 large sweet onions, chopped (I use one)
1 large red bell pepper, seeded and chopped (I usually use one medium size one)
1/2 cup water
1 lb sharp cheddar cheese grated (I just eyeball this and use what I feel like)
5 ears fresh corn, cut and scraped from the cob (I use 3)
2 - 3 fresh jalapeno peppers (I use one, sometimes a serrano or whatever is available, doesn't seem to matter)
1/2 tsp salt (salt to taste)
1 pint sour cream (I use one cup)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Wash and slice squash and zucchini into thin rounds.
In a large heavy pan, cook the squash, onions, and bell pepper in 1/2 cup water over medium heat until tender. Drain liquid and mash with a potato masher.
Add the cheese, corn, peppers, salt, and sour cream. Stir to mix well.
Pour into a casserole dish, sprinkle some more cheese on top. Bake until bubbly or starting to brown. Serve immediately.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Baked Macaroni & Cheese

Baked Macaroni and Cheese
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
2 1/2 cups milk
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheese (mild or sharp process or Cheddar), divided
8 ounces (2 cups) Mueller's elbow macaroni
1/4 cup buttered bread crumbs

In saucepan, melt butter. Remove from heat; blend in flour, salt, and mustard. Add milk; heat, stirring constantly, until sauce thickens a little and is smooth. Stir in 1 1/2 cups cheese; heat until melted, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, cook macaroni 5 minutes and drain. Combine with sauce in a buttered 2-quart casserole; top with remaining cheese, bread crumbs, and paprika. Bake at 375°F about 20 to 25 minutes or until nicely browned and bubbly. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Beth's crepes

1 c flour
1/2 tsp salt
3 Tbsp powdered sugar
1 1/2 c milk
3 eggs, well-beaten
1/2 tsp lemon extract
2 Tbsp melted butter, plus more for pan

Mix dry ingredients. Whisk wet ingredients together and add slowly to dry ingredients. Pass batter through sieve if lumpy. Heat nonstick skillet over med heat and then brush with melted butter (it should sizzle). Remove pan from heat, quickly pour 1/8 cup of batter in skillet and tilt pan to cover bottom. Return to heat. Cook briefly, then flip.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Monday, April 14, 2008