Honeybun cake…

10309382_922955184387876_91640386428077594_n

I find it hilariously revealing that my all-time most-visited blog post is one entitled “Heeeyyy, good lookin’, whaaatcha’ got cookin’ …?” It’s a recipe for coffee cake, which people might not be expecting to find under that title, but had I called it “World’s Best Coffee Cake, Trust Me,” I can’t imagine that it would have outperformed everything else I’ve ever published by 1000 to 1. Since I put it up three years ago it’s never left top spot on my “most viewed.” People are so freaking predictable.

And yet…and yet…92 people have taken the time to give it a rating, for an average four stars, and a lot of comments have been left, so you know what? This probably IS the world’s best coffee cake, trust me. So simple to make, so yummy to eat – we should all bake one this morning just to get the week started on a good note. You know you want to…

Best Coffee Cake

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It’s a recipe day…

This sounds terrific for lunch tomorrow – somebody please do the work and get back to me with reviews, thanks! Screenshot 2016-04-19 at 11.35.06 AM

Screenshot 2016-04-19 at 11.35.45 AM

Cooking Notes at this link: NYTimes

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Red Velvet Pancakes

A late Valentine’s Day brunch?  This temptation brought to you by AllRecipes.com.  You’re welcome.

(DISCLAIMER: I would have to settle for Light Pink Velvet.

Too much Red #40 for this chickie!)

Screenshot 2016-02-14 at 09.31.11 AM

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Reader suggestions: 1) Add one more tablespoon of cocoa powder and sugar to the listed recipe. Don’t skimp because it really takes the flavor up a notch which to my palate was perfect!! 2) Cook the pancakes on a lower heat setting then regularly. I found these pancakes like to burn a little faster than others. They do better at a lower heat. 3) Butter and spray oil for the pan/griddle is essential. A little melted butter followed up by a spray of oil and you will have a hint of buttery flavor and a slight browning to the red batter. 4) Let your batter remain a little on the lumpy side. It does seem to produce better pancakes. Let the bubbles form completely and the edges dry out a tad before flipping. The cream cheese drizzle works a little better with a touch of milk and a few seconds in the microwave. Enjoy!!

Sustenance for a rainy day …

Screenshot 2015-11-30 at 08.13.29 AM

Here’s a rustic dish, full of flavor, that will lead to wonderful leftovers all week.  Once you try this smooth sauce you’ll want it on just about everything.

CHICKEN CHASSEUR

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • 6-8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 cups assorted mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • 1 (14.5 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, divided
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus extra as needed
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  1.  Pat your chicken breasts dry and season them generously with salt and pepper.
  2. Pour some flour into a shallow dish and dredge chicken in it so all sides are coated.
  3. In a large Dutch oven or deep skillet over medium-high heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter and brown chicken on all sides.
  4. Transfer chicken to a plate, leave drippings in Dutch oven, and add remaining butter and olive oil.
  5. Sauté shallots until translucent, then add garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes, or until fragrant.
  6. Add sliced mushrooms and rosemary to the shallots and cook until mushrooms soften. 5-7 minutes.
  7. Sprinkle 3 tablespoons flour evenly over the mushrooms and stir together. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until thickened.
  8. Mix in dry white wine, chicken stock, crushed tomatoes, tomato paste and bay leaf, then return chicken to Dutch oven.
  9. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 35 minutes, or until chicken is cooked all the way through.
  10. Remove from heat, discard bay leaf, and serve alone or with egg noodles or polenta.

From the Kitchens of Twelve Tomatoes

Screenshot 2015-11-30 at 08.21.35 AM

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Parmesan Cauliflower Bites

Not guilt-free, but hey, VEGGIES!

BitesParmCaulBitesFrom Damn Delicious:  http://damndelicious.net/2014/04/04/parmesan-cauliflower-bites/

Stuffed Baked Potatoes

Let’s do a recipe — my kind of recipe …

baked potato

Cottage Cheese-Stuffed Potatoes
Serves 4

Ingredients

4 large baking potatoes
1 cup (low-fat) cottage cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
2 green onions, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
2 tablespoons parmesan cheese, grated
1 tablespoon fresh chives, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Directions

Preheat oven to 425º F and place rack in the center of oven.
Use a fork to prick your potatoes in several places and place directly on oven rack. Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until tender.
In a large bowl, mix together cottage cheese and sour cream until combined.
Then add in onions, cheese, dill, chives and garlic powder. Season with salt and pepper and mix well.
Remove potatoes from oven and cut in half lengthwise and across.
Spoon heaping amount of cottage cheese mixture into potato.
Optional: return to oven for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted and golden brown.
Remove from oven and let cool 5 minutes before serving.
Recipe adapted from Spark Recipes

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PEANUT BUTTER CHOCOLATE CHIP CREAM CHEESE COOKIES

chocroll

 

Yes, these exist, and they melt in the mouths of those who eat them, I have that on good authority.  They’re also fun to make, pretty to eat, and you can switch those two things around for entertainment.  Tell me this doesn’t look like your grandma’s kitchen when she was on crack.

Ingredients:

1 can seamless crescent rolls (or pinch together seams on a regular can, or make your own.)  {WHAT??}
8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
¾ C mixed peanut butter and chocolate chips

Directions:
Beat sugar, cream cheese and vanilla together until smooth and creamy.

Unroll the crescent roll sheet onto lightly floured surface. Stretch dough (you can use a rolling pin), then trim the edges for a nice rectangular shape. A pizza cutter is great for trimming edges of dough.  {I didn’t say that about the pizza cutter because what would I know?}

Spread the cream cheese mixture over top of the crescent sheet, leaving 1/2″ around the edge.
Sprinkle chips on cream cheese – press lightly to aid in rolling.
Roll the crescent sheet up tightly, from long side to opposite long side (helps to have four hands) and wrap in your favorite brand of clingy stuff.
Place in freezer for at least 2 hours. It won’t get really solid as the cream cheese mix won’t freeze hard.
When chilled preheat oven to 350°.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper (prevents sticking and helps in cleanup).  {Honestly, there are still phrases out there that make me want to go back to the kitchen, but so far the short-term memory thing is still kicking in on demand.}

Slice the crescent roll into 1/4″ slices. They won’t keep the precise round shape, but that is fine!  {You bet it is, because your mother isn’t standing over your shoulder anymore oh hi whoever’s mom, you are so lovely in that sweatshirt is that the color this year?  Jeez, who knew you could appear out of nowhere like that, somebody’s mom … or whoever?}

Look at the ghosts, living or dead, that haunt your creative-idea board, the ones that turn your Pinterest projects into panic attacks because they WILL.NOT.TURN.OUT.F*CKING.PERFECT.   AND.THE.WORLD.IS.NOT.FAIR.DAMMIT.  {Yes, that IS part of the original recipe, I’m frankly surprised you would ask.}

Bake on prepared cookie sheet for 12 -14 minutes until crescent roll appears golden brown.
Cool on the parchment paper or wire rack.

{I don’t know how many melty things this makes because I am not the cook.  Clearly a bit of attentive hands-on research would not be out of line.  I’ll get back to you … but please don’t bug me about it.}

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Grown Up Game Day Cheesy Beer Dip

The Kansas Jayhawks will be playing basketball in about twenty minutes over on the hill and here on HD, so we’re in Snack Mode.  Here’s a variation on the usual white-guy queso, and I’m sure you can think of all kinds of ways to personalize it.  Enjoy!

 

Beer Cheese Dip

 

“There are certain times when we are totally okay with indulging in ridiculously yummy foods that we know are probably less than great for our health. Sitting around and watching the big game with friends and family is one of those times when we’re just happy to be around loved ones and we like to soak it all in. (Much like the piece of bread when we dunk it into this dip!)

This beer cheese dip is sinfully delicious and we’re not sorry! Use your favorite beer—keeping in mind that lighter draughts will produce a lighter dip and vice versa—and cheese, gradually melt and blend it all together and you’re golden. You do need to plan out the rest of your party prep, since this dip is best made right before serving, but it’s really easy and packs a flavorful punch, sure to be everyone’s favorite!”

 

Beer Cheese Dip
Yield: 2-2 1/2 cups

Ingredients

1 cup ale or lager (or your choice beer; light and crisp will result in a lighter sauce, etc.)
1 cup cheddar cheese, grated
2/3 cup milk
1/2 cup pepper jack cheese (optional)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dry mustard
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
tortilla chips, for serving
Directions

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat and add in flour. Stir roux for 2-3 minutes, or until smooth and pasty and flour has had a chance to cook (but not burn).
Whisking continuously, gradually whisk in milk until smooth. Then pour in beer and stir until fully incorporated.
Raise heat to medium-high and let mixture simmer lightly. Stir in Worcestershire sauce and dry mustard and season with salt and pepper.
Continuing to stir, let cook for about 4 minutes, or until sauce thickens.
1/3 cup at a time, add in grated cheese and stir until (almost) fully melted. Then add another handful. Continue with remaining cheese.
Once mixture is smooth and thick, taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
Transfer to serving bowl and serve immediately with tortilla chips, crackers, or slices of toasted baguette.

Recipe adapted from Williams Sonoma

http://12tomatoes.com/2015/01/grown-up-game-day-cheesy-beer-dip.html

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Sweet, sweet tapioca …

Are there dishes from your childhood you’d give your right earlobe to duplicate?  (Don’t fear it, Stephen Colbert’s doing okay without his.)  I finally came across my mom’s potato pancakes when we moved here — miraculously, they’re made every morning by the nice folks at The Roost, just up the street — who knew?

Still looking for a few things, most of them cooked up by one of my vimmens … the collection of interesting females who shaped my concept of personhood, for good and ill.  My grandmothers, my mom, my aunts … they’re a warm honey-pot in my heart, part perfume, part tears, part crazy, part food.  Like peach cobbler.  I have my grandma’s recipe, but not her homegrown peaches that I helped pick and blanch and slice.  So there’s that, but it’s fixable, except for the grandma part.

Still-warm lemon-meringue pie that’s at least four inches high, baked from scratch with my mom’s recipe.  Actually, somebody I know might have that recipe …

My Aunt Bette’s meatloaf.  That one could probably be solved, too.  The list gets really long, though, once I open the Food Memories file folder — might have to leave the rest of the salivating and crying for another day.  Meanwhile, here’s a thing I’ve looked for and tried to whip together and just happened across today because that’s how the universe works sometimes … the clone of my mom’s tapioca pudding, which, trust me on this, is equally incredible warm or cold.  But I like it warm.

Tapioca

tapioca pudding recipe

Notes from 12 Tomatoes, where I found the recipe:

“A dessert that’s a favorite among many is tapioca pudding. It’s similar to other sweet puddings like rice pudding to a degree, however there’s something unique to the taste of tapioca. What exactly is tapioca, though? It’s a starch harvested from the cassava plant.

Far too many tapioca pudding recipes call for an instant mix or come in the ‘instant’ variety. So much of the creamy, delicious flavor is lost this way. Instead, our recipe calls for small, pearl tapioca. This wonderful, sweet dessert is a great way to end a meal, or even as a night-cap before you head off to bed. Some tapioca requires soaking overnight. If that is the case, soak overnight and reduce the milk to 2 1/2 cups.”

 

Sweet Tapioca

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Devils on Horseback

From the brilliantly clever people at The Crepes of Wrath … Bacon-Wrapped Dates!  With surprises!!

 

bacon-wrapped dates

No wonder these little beauties are known as “Devils on Horseback” — they pack a powerful, naughty punch with spiced poached pears, crispy bacon, and sweet, chewy dates. Recipe here.

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Broccoli Cheddar Soup

broccoli soup

Creamy Soup Recipe: Broccoli Cheddar Soup

When temperatures cool down, there’s really nothing better than digging into a warm and hearty soup; the thicker the better, we say. Broccoli cheddar is one of our favorites, and this recipe is the way to do it! It really delivers on flavor and creaminess—packed with broccoli and cheese, you get a ton of bang for your buck and you will feel it warm you up from your core! This soup tastes delicious and is fool-proof to make; get cooking and see how much you love it!

 

Ingredients

4 cups broccoli florets
2 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
2 cups half-and-half
1/4 cup unsalted butter, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
salt and pepper, to taste
Directions

In a medium pan over medium-high heat, sauté onions and garlic in 1 tablespoon butter until softened.
In a large pot, cook remaining butter with flour to create a roux, 3-4 minutes. Once pasty and thick, add in half-and-half and chicken stock. Let simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Add onions, garlic, broccoli, and nutmeg to mixture and simmer for another 25-30 minutes, until thickened.
Stir in cheddar cheese until melted, taste and add salt and pepper to your liking.
Optional: Puree soup to smooth out chunks {horrors!}, or serve as is.
Recipe adapted from Yammie’s Noshery

http://12tomatoes.com/2014/10/creamy-soup-recipe-thick-broccoli-cheddar-soup.html

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Salted Caramel Peanut Butter Pie

Because I hung up my apron ten years ago when I married a cook, I don’t post recipes that require 37-million ingredients and tedious hours to assemble — I figure most people are as cranked about that as I am.  Not all, I get that — but it’s cool for the rest of us to have a few go-tos that are within the realm of quick-ish possibility.  Ergo …

CPB Pie

CPB Recipe

 

CPB Comments

 

From 12 Tomatoes.  Check them out here:  http://12tomatoes.com

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Pumpkin Bread with Caramel Filled DelightFulls!

 

PBFrame

https://www.verybestbaking.com/recipes/146152/pumpkin-bread-with-caramel-filled-delightfulls/?

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Do this!!

Thank you to my friend Jeffrey Frank for this excellent idea.  Terrific way to use leftovers.

If all the dressing vanished on Thanksgiving Day, make your favorite stove-top stuffing mix and bake it into waffles.  Tear turkey into small pieces and heat with the gravy.  Pour over waffles and top with a scoop of mashed potatoes with more gravy drizzled over the top.  Be thankful.  Again.  Some more.

 

waffles

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German Chocolate Waffles

DH-GERMAN-CHOC-CAKE-WAFFLES

Good fall treat.

http://www.duncanhines.com/recipes/specialty-desserts/Duncan%20Hines®/german-chocolate-waffles/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=paidsocial&utm_content=chocolatewaffles-11.18.14&utm_campaign=bakingseason

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