Sunday, December 16, 2012

No-Bake Mint Thins

8 oz Baker's Semi-Sweet Chocolate, melted according to package directions
1/4  tsp peppermint extract
24 Ritz crackers
1 candy cane, crushed

1. Mix extract into melted chocolate. Line cookie sheet with waxed paper.

2. Dip crackers into chocolate, turning evenly to coat both sides. Carefully scrape off excess chocolate. Place in single layer on lined cookie sheet.; sprinkle with crushed candy cane.

3. Refrigerate 30 minutes or until chocolate is firm.

Makes 24 cookies.

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Saturday, December 15, 2012

Peppermint Crunch Sugar Cookies

1 roll (16.5oz) Pillsbury sugar cookie dough
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1.5 cups white vanilla baking chips
1 tbsp vegetable oil
8 round peppermint candies, crushed fine in food processor

1. Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, break up cookie dough. Knead in flour until well blended. Shape dough into 36 1-inch balls. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.

2. Bake 10-14 minutes or until edges start to turn golden-brown. Cool 1 minute. Remove from cookie sheets to cooling rack; cool completely.

3. In a small microwaveable bowl, microwave vanilla chips and vegetable oil uncovered on 50% power, 2-3 minutes, stirring once halfway through, until melted. Stir until smooth.

4. Dip half of each cookie into vanilla mixture, allowing excess to drip off. Place on waxed or parchment paper-lined cookie sheets. Sprinkle each with crushed peppermint candy. Let stand until set.

Makes approximately 36 cookies.

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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Sweet Potato Coins with Gorgonzola and Bacon

1/4 cup orange juice
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 large sweet potato, cut into 1/2" slices (no thinner!)
ground black pepper
2 slices of bacon, cooked crispy and crumbled
1/3 cup sour cream
3 tbsp gorgonzola cheese crumbles
2 tbsp chives, chopped

1. Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

2. In a bowl, whisk together orange juice and brown sugar. Add sweet potato coins, tossing to coat. Remove from bowl to parchment lined baking sheet in a single layer. Season with black pepper.

3. Bake for 50-60 minutes, flipping rounds halfway through. Meanwhile, mix sour cream and gorgonzola together. Refrigerate until ready to use.

4. Remove from oven and transfer rounds to serving platter. Gently spoon sour cream mixture onto rounds. Top with bacon and chives.

Serves 4-6.

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Apple Crisp

4 medium-sized tart cooking apples, peeled, cored and chopped into bite-size chunks
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup quick-cooking or old fashioned oats
1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened (NOT melted)
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground nutmeg
ice cream (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375. Grease bottom and sides of 8-inch square pan with shortening.

2. Spread apples in pan. In a medium bowl, combine remaining ingredients (except for ice cream), stirring until well mixed. Sprinkle over apples.

3. Bake 30-40 minutes, until topping is golden-brown and apples are tender when pierced with a fork. Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream.

Serves 6.

Variation: 4 cups of fresh or frozen blueberries may be substituted for the apples.

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Friday, September 7, 2012

Italian Sausage Rigatoni

3 Italian mild sausage links
1/2 pkg rigatoni pasta
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
3-4 large pieces of roasted red pepper, chopped into bite-sized pieces
1 jar (26oz) pasta sauce
2 tbsp parsley, chopped

1. Grill or pan-fry sausage links until cooked thoroughly. Allow to cool for at least 30 minutes. Cut sausage into coin slices.

2. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and return to pot when finished cooking.

3. While pasta cooks, heat oil in a large pan. Add garlic and sautee lightly for 30 seconds. Add peppers and and sausage, cooking until all are heated through. Add pasta sauce, heating until sauce is warm.

4. Add sauce and sausage to pasta in pot. Sprinkle in parsley and stir until sauce is well distributed.

Serves 4-6.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Tartar Sauce

1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tsp sweet relish
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp finely chopped fresh dill
splash of pickle juice
dash of cayenne pepper

1. Mix all ingredients together until well blended.

Makes approximately 1/2 cup sauce.

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Thursday, June 28, 2012

Basic Meatballs

6 lbs lean ground beef
1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup fine or panko bread crumbs
2 cups warm water
4 eggs
4 tbsp dried Italian seasoning
3 tsp salt
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp ground black pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced

1. Preheat oven to 400.

2. Gently whisk eggs into water. Stir in bread crumbs, Italian seasoning, salt, onion powder and black pepper.

3. Place ground beef in a large bowl. Add garlic, Parmesan and bread crumb mixture. Mix well. Shape mixture into 1.5" meatballs. Place in an ungreased baking dish. (I use one 10x15" glass baking dish and one 9x13" glass baking dish and work in two batches.) Drizzle a little bit of water into the bottom of the dish to prevent it from cracking. Place unused meat mixture in the refrigerator until ready to make the second batch.

4. Bake uncovered 20-25 minutes, stirring once about halfway through cooking time, until no longer pink in center.

5. Remove meatballs to another dish to cool and repeat the process with the remaining meat mixture.

6. Cool completely before packaging to freeze.

7. To reheat from freezer, put one jar of tomato sauce for every 12 meatballs in a saucepan or pot (depending on the number being reheated), cover and simmer over medium-low heat until meatballs are hot in the center.

Makes approximately 9 dozen meatballs.

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Saturday, June 9, 2012

Chicken Florentine Casserole

1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces
1 clove garlic, minced
1 container (10oz) Philadelphia Italian Cheese and Herb Cooking Creme
3/4 cup milk
2.5 cups uncooked farfalle pasta, cooked according to package directions and drained
6 oz fresh baby spinach, rinsed and drained
1 cup shredded mozzarella
4 oz bacon, cooked and crumbled

1. Preheat oven to 375.

2.Hear oil in a large skillet with a lid over medium heat. Add chicken and garlic; cook, covered, stirring frequently, until chicken is done. Add spinach in batches until it is wilted down.

3. Add remaining ingredients, except for bacon, stirring to combine. Spoon into a 1.5-quart casserole dish sprayed with cooking spray.

4. Cover and bake for 25 minutes, uncovering and sprinkling with bacon after 15 minutes.

5. Remove from oven and allow to cool and thicken for 10 minutes before serving.

Serves 4-6.

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Monday, April 30, 2012

Cole Slaw

1 lb cabbage, shredded (about half of a medium head)
1 large carrot shredded
1.5 tbsp distilled vinegar
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1.5 tbsp white sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper

1. Mix the mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper together with a whisk in a large bowl until combined.

2. Add shredded cabbage and carrot to the bowl. Stir until dressing is evenly distributed. Taste to adjust seasonings to personal preference.

3. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour (preferably overnight) before serving.

Serves 8.

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Friday, March 30, 2012

Spinach-Pesto Meatball Soup

1/2 of a 28oz package frozen cooked Italian-style meatballs
2 cans (14.5oz each) diced tomatoes with Italian spices
1 can (15oz) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2/3 cup water
generous 1/4 cup basil pesto
2 cups baby spinach
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1. Combine the still-frozen meatballs, tomatoes with juice, beans, water and pesto. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

2. Stir in 2 cups of spinach. Allow to wilt.

3. Spoon into bowls and served topped with Parmesan.

Serves 4.

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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Creamy Pesto Stuffed Shells

24 jumbo pasta shells, uncooked
1 lb lean ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
1 tub (10oz) Philadelphia Creamy Pesto Cooking Creme, divided
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella, divided
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups tomato sauce, divided
2 tbsp milk

1. Cook shells as directed on package. Meanwhile, brown beef with onion in a large skillet; drain. Remove from heat. Stir in 3/4 cup cooking creme, ricotta,  1/2 cup mozzarella and Parmesan.

2. Preheat oven to 350. Drain shells. Spread 1 cup of sauce onto bottom of 13x9" baking dish. Stuff shells with meat mixture and place on top of sauce. Cover shells with remaining sauce. Cover and bake for 25 minutes.

3. Mix remaining cooking cream with the milk. Drizzle over shells. Top with remaining mozzarella. Bake, uncovered, for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serves 6.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Pan-Roasted Chicken with Lemon-Garlic Green Beans and Potatoes

6 tbsp olive oil, divided
2 lemons, 1 thinly sliced, 1 juiced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
3/4 lb green beans, trimmed
8 small red potatoes, quartered
4 chicken breasts, bone in, skin on (about 3.35 lbs total)

1. Preheat oven to 450. Coat a large baking dish with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Arrange the lemon slices in a single layer in the bottom of the dish.

2 . In a large bowl, combine the remaining oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper. Add the green beans and toss to coat. Using a slotted spoon or tongs, remove the green beans and arrange them on top of the lemon slices. Add the potatoes to the same olive oil mixture and toss to coat. Using a slotted spoon or tongs, arrange the potatoes along the inside edge of the dish on top of the green beans. Place the chicken in the same bowl with the olive oil mixture and coat thoroughly. Place the chicken skin-side up, in the dish on top of the green beans. Pour any remaining olive oil mixture over the chicken.

3. Roast, uncovered, for 50 minutes. Remove chicken from dish. Check potatoes for tenderness; the green beans and potatoes may be returned to the oven for an additional 10 minutes, if necessary.

Serves 4.

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About This Blog

I find recipes everywhere. Online. In magazines. In cookbooks. On the back of boxes. After a while, it got difficult to remember where I found (or stashed) a particular recipe when I wanted to make it a second time. With the goal of wrangling them all in one coherent location that was easy to find and navigate--along with multiple requests from friends for this recipe or that one--this blog was born.

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