Sunday, January 26, 2014

Sauteed Sole with Lemon

This fish was so delicate and tasty. If you are looking for a quick and delicious dinner tonight, this is the one to make!   You may also substitute flounder or any other white fish. 

1/2 cup flour, preferably Wondra flour
1 tsp coarse salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
2 sole fillets (6 ounces each)
2 TBS unsalted butter
2 TBS olive oil
2 TBS sliced almonds
1 1/2 TBS chopped fresh parsley
Finely chopped zest and juice from 1 lemon, plus wedges for garnish

Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a shallow bowl.  Dredge fish fillets in mixture, coating both sides and shake off the excess.

Melt butter with oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat.  When butter begins to foam, add fillets.  Cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side.  Transfer each fillet to a serving plate.

Add almonds, parsley, zest and 2 TBS lemon juice to the pan.  Spoon over fillets and serve with lemon wedges.

Serves 2 (the above picture shows a tripled recipe)

Source:  Martha Stewart Living, February 2008


Thursday, January 16, 2014

Skillet Chicken Parmesan

This Chicken Parmesan is a healthier version than those that are breaded and deep fried.  To keep this a healthy dish, I served it with a brown and wild rice blend instead of pasta.  If you chose to serve this with pasta, prepare a multi grain or wheat pasta which has fewer carbohydrates and more vitamins, minerals, fiber and protein than white pasta.  My family really enjoyed it. 

1/3 cup breadcrumbs
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1 large egg
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 pound)
1 TBS olive oil
3/4 cup marinara sauce
3/4 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

In a shallow bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, oregano and garlic salt.  In another shallow bowl, beat the egg until frothy.

Wrap the chicken breasts in plastic wrap and place on a cutting board.  Gently pound each breast with a mallet to an even thickness (about 1/2 inch).  Dip each chicken breast into the beaten egg to coat, and then roll in the breadcrumb mixture.

Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the chicken and cook for 4 or five minutes on each side or until the chicken is well browned and just cooked through.

Spoon the marinara sauce evenly on top of the chicken and sprinkle the mozzarella on top.  Cover the pan, reduce heat to low, and cook for 3 more minutes, or until the cheese melts.

Serves 4

Source: Eat What You Love - Marlene Koch


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Chocolate Billionaires

I was looking for a new candy to make for Christmas and found this on my friend's recipe blog: These were a big hit.  They taste just like a candy bar.  Soooo good!

1 package (14 ounces) caramels
3 tablespoons water
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
1 cup crisp rice cereal  (I used 1 1/2 cups)
3 cups milk chocolate chips
1 1/2 tsp shortening

Line two baking sheets with waxed paper; grease the paper and set aside. In a large heavy saucepan, combine the caramels and water; cook and stir over low heat until smooth. Stir in pecans and cereal until coated. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto prepared pans. Refrigerate for 10 minutes or until firm.

Meanwhile, in a microwave, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth. Dip candy into chocolate, coating all sides; allow excess to drip off. Place on prepared pans. Refrigerate until set.

Store in an airtight container.

Makes about 2 pounds (32 pieces)

Source:  Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2003


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Peanut Butter Texas Sheet Cake

This cake is a peanut butter lover's dream come true!  Peanut butter is baked inside the cake and mixed into the icing.  Delish!


2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup butter
1 cup water
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup buttermilk (or 1/2 cup milk and 1 TBS vinegar or lemon juice)
Peanut Butter Icing recipe below
Garnish: chopped peanuts (optional)

Combine flour, sugar, salt and baking soda in a large bowl; set aside.  Combine butter, water and peanut butter in a saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil.  Add to flour mixture and mix well; set aside. Combine eggs, vanilla and buttermilk; add to peanut butter mixture.

Spread batter in a greased 10x15 jelly-roll pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25-28 minutes or until cake springs back when gently touched.  Spread Peanut Butter Icing over warm cake and garnish with chopped peanuts, if you desire,

Peanut Butter Icing:
1/2 cup butter
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1/3 cup plus 1 TBS milk
2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Combine butter, peanut butter and milk in a saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil.  Remove from heat; stir in powdered sugar and vanilla, mixing until spreading consistency.

Source:  Gooseberry Patch - Quick & Easy Family Favorites 


Sunday, January 5, 2014

Pancake Squares

I was hungry for pancakes but wanted to try something a little different.  This was the perfect recipe.  Before baking, you could add chocolate chips, blueberries, raspberries or any other fruit.  This would also be good topped with pecans and bananas or just butter and maple syrup.  I sprinkled blueberries on top of mine before baking.  So good, delicious and very easy.
1 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 TBS sugar
3/4 cup milk
2 TBS melted butter
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla
sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar (my addition)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease an 8x8 baking dish. Mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. In a separate bowl, mix together the milk, butter, egg and vanilla.  Gradually, add the liquid mixture to the dry mixture.  Do not overbeat.  Pour batter into prepared pan. 

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a wooden pick comes out clean.

You may also double the recipe and bake in a 9x13 pan.

Serves 2 - 4


Tortellini Salad

This recipe is from a catering company in Eagle River, Wisconsin called Apron Annie's.  I made it to bring to our company Christmas potluck. I can't wait to make this was so good. 

6 Cups frozen cheese tortellini pasta, cooked and drained
4 cups fresh baby spinach, washed, dried and coarsely chopped (I used 8 cups)
2 carrots, shredded
1 small red onion, chopped
1 cup toasted pecans
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 cup (2 large cans) canned mandarin orange segments (drained, reserve juice to use in the dressing)
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 1/2 tsp dried basil
2 tsp sugar

Dressing (see below)

Cook tortellini according to package directions.  Drain and cool.  Make sure you do not cook the pasta too long.  It should be al dente.

In large bowl, combine the pasta with vegetables, pecans, cranberries and oranges.  Add salt, pepper, basil and sugar and mix well.  Mix gently so you don't break up the pasta.

Prepare dressing and dress pasta as desired.  You may not need all of the dressing.


1 1/2 cups of your favorite Italian vinaigrette dressing
1/4 cup mandarin orange juice
1 TBS balsamic vinegar

Serves 6 to 8

Source:  Milwaukee Journal Sentinel


Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Bars

These bars were very delicious and easy to make.  I think they would also taste good made with a combination of chocolate chips, dried cranberries and coconut.  White chocolate chips would be a good addition as well. 

1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups quick-cooking or old fashioned oats
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter, sugars, eggs and vanilla.  In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt.  Gradually, add the flour mixture to the mixing bowl and beat just until combined.  Fold in the oats and chocolate chips.  Spread in a 10x15 baking pan, using a spatula or your hands to press into place.  Don't press down too firmly.  Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool, but cut the bars while they are still somewhat warm, as a knife will go through them more easily.

You may also cut this recipe in half and bake in a square 9x9 pan.  For thicker bars you may bake in a 9x13 pan for 25 minutes.

Source:  Penzey's Spice Catalog


Saturday, January 4, 2014

Turkey Stock

Whenever we make a turkey, we save the carcass for homemade turkey stock. This stock makes the best turkey soup!
Turkey carcass from a 14 lb turkey (cut off any remaining meat and save for soup)
4 large carrots, unpeeled and cut in 3 inch pieces
2 medium onions, cut in wedges
4 celery stalks and leaves, cut in 3 inch pieces
8-10 garlic cloves, sliced
8 sprigs fresh thyme
10 fresh parsley sprigs
3-4 tsp kosher salt (or o taste)
2-4 tsp black pepper (or to taste)
Add turkey carcass to a 10-14 quart stock pot* along with remaining ingredients; cover with water. Cover pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Skim off any foam that comes to the surface. Lower heat and simmer, covered, for 2-3 hours.
Strain ingredients through a colander into a large bowl; discard solids. Let broth cool and then pour into containers; refrigerate. Remove any fat from the surface and either refrigerate or freeze.
Broth will stay fresh up to 5 day in the refrigerator or 6 months in the freezer.
*I used two six-quart stock pots to make this recipe.
Makes approx. 6 quarts

The Lady's Chicken Noodle Soup

I had leftover turkey from Thanksgiving so I used that in this recipe instead of chicken.  Paula Deen's recipe received numerous rave reviews on the web so I knew this would be a good soup recipe to try.  I had my own stock so I did not use the recipe for the stock below.  The turkey stock recipe I used is posted on this blog.  You could also used purchased stock if you do not wish to make your own.  I will definitely make this soup again.  It tastes so good on a cold Wisconsin winter day!


1 (2 1/2 - 3 pound) fryer chicken, cut up
3 1/2 quarts water
1 onion, peeled and diced
1 1/2 to 2 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp lemon-pepper seasoning
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 bay leaves
3 chicken bouillon cubes
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper


2 1/2 cups uncooked egg noodles
2 1/2 cups sliced carrots
2 cups sliced celery, with leafy green tops
1 medium onion, chopped (my addition)
1 cup sliced mushrooms (my addition)
2 tsp chicken base or bouillon (my addition) 
3 TBS chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/3 cup sherry
1 tsp dried rosemary (or 2 tsp fresh rosemary leaves)
1 cup grated Parmesan, optional
3/4 cup heavy cream, optional
2 cups green peas (my addition) 
Seasoning salt
Freshly ground black pepper

For the stock: add all ingredients to a soup pot.  Cook until chicken is tender, about 35-45 minutes.  Remove chicken from pot and set aside to cool.  Remove and discard bay leaves and onion.  You should have approximately 3 quarts of stock.  When chicken is cool enough to touch, pick bones clean, discarding bones, skin and cartilage.  Set chicken aside.

For the soup:  bring the 3 quarts (12 cups) of stock back to a boil, add carrots, and cook for 3 minutes.  Add celery and onion and continue to cook for 5 to 10 minutes.  Add egg noodles and cook according to directions on package.  **( I did not add my noodles to the pot.  I cooked them in a separate pot). When noodles are done, add chicken, mushrooms, base or bouillon, parsley, sherry and rosemary.  Slowly, add the Parmesan a little bit at a time so it doesn't clump.  Add cream and peas.  Cook for another 2 minutes.  Adjust seasoning, if needed, by adding seasoning salt and  pepper.

Enjoy with a nice hot crusty loaf of French bread.

You may also serve the Parmesan on top of the soup instead of mixing it in.

Source:   Food - Paula Deen


Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Whole-Wheat Carrot Applesauce Muffins

I like to make "better-for-you" muffins so I don't feel guilty having a muffin for breakfast. These muffins are really moist and delicious.

1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1/2 cup honey
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
3/4 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (my addition)

Preheat oven to 350. Line a muffin pan with muffin liners and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt.

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter, honey, egg and vanilla together on medium speed. Turn the speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture until combined. The batter will be thick.

Using a spatula, carefully fold in the applesauce, carrots and walnuts. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups. Bake for 22-24 minutes or until the muffins begin to turn golden brown.

Makes 12 muffins



Korean-Style Short Ribs with Horseradish Butter (Pressure Cooker)

If you are looking for a delicious short rib recipe, you found it. These ribs are so tender and flavorful. The horseradish butter adds a nice spice to the dish without being overpowering.  Add as much or as little as you like to the ribs. I served these ribs over brown rice.

Horseradish Butter:

4 TBS (1/2 stick) butter, at room temperature
2 TBS drained prepared horseradish
1/8 tsp salt

Combine the above ingredients in a glass bowl. Cover and refrigerate several hours in advance so the flavors blend.


2 - 3 pounds beef short ribs
2 TBS peanut oil
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 carrots, coarsely grated
1/4 cup dry sherry
3 TBS toasted (not plain) sesame oil
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 TBS creamy peanut butter
2 TBS minced garlic
1-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1/2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
Sliced green onion tops, for garnish
4 TBS toasted sesame seeds (optional)

Trim excess fat from meat. Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the ribs, and brown on all sides. Remove browned ribs from pan and set aside.

Add onion and remaining oil to the pan and cook for 3 minutes, or until the onion is soft.  Add onions to the pressure cooker; make sure to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan and add to the cooker. Add the remaining ingredients, except for the green onion tops and sesame seeds,to the pressure cooker; stir together. Add the ribs to the pressure cooker; turn each rib to coat with the marinade. Lock the lid in place. Cook on the "meat" or "high" setting for 40 - 45 minutes; let the pressure release naturally. If the meat is not falling off the bones, lock the lid in place and cook for an additional 5-10 minutes; let the pressure release naturally.

Remove the ribs to a serving platter. Dot each rib with the Horseradish Butter. Sprinkle the green onion tops and sesame seeds over the ribs. Serve the remaining Horseradish Butter on the side.

Serves 4

Source:  Miss Vickie's Big Book of Pressure Cooker Recipes - Vickie Smith


Breakfast Quiche Bites

These quiche bites are just the right size for a light breakfast. They would also be great served for brunch.

1 TBS olive oil
1/4 cup diced onion
1 cup baby spinach leaves, coarsely chopped *
2 oz (1/2 cup) part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded *
1/4 cup 2% reduced-fat milk *
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
4 large eggs

Preheat oven to 350. Coat 6 muffin cups with cooking spray.

Heat a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan. Add onion; saute for 3 minutes or until almost tender. Add spinach; saute 2 minutes or just until spinach begins to wilt, stirring constantly. Transfer spinach mixture to a small bowl, and cool 3 minutes. Stir in mozzarella.

Combine milk and the remaining ingredients, stirring with a whisk until blended. Stir in cheese mixture. Divide the mixture evenly among prepared muffin cups. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until puffed and set. (Quiches will deflate slightly as they cool.) Serve warm.

* My modifications:  1 1/2 cups spinach, 1% milk, low-fat mozzarella cheese

Serves 6

Source:  Cooking Light Comfort Food Favorites