Thursday, August 21, 2008

Fried Pork Chops

A southern tradition and one of my very favorite dishes!

To be completely honest...I am not sure if the measurements are right in this recipe. It was one of my experimental meals and I didn't measure anything. The recipe is more or less a guideline. It's hard to mess up so just have fun with it!

3-4 boneless pork chops
1 egg
2 cups flour
1 tsp. white pepper (or to taste)
1 tsp. red pepper (or to taste)
salt (again...or to taste)
black pepper (you guessed it! Add more or less according to your taste)
vegetable oil

Soak the pork chops in a container of salt water for at least 30 minutes. They can be soaked overnight if desired. Pour vegetable in a shallow skillet and allow to get hot. Mix flour, salt and peppers. Whisk a single egg. Roll the pork chops in the egg and then coat with the flour mixture. Spread a couple of paper towels on a plate. Place the pork chops in the skillet. When the breading starts turning brown and center of the pork chops are white they are ready! Remove from oil and place on the paper towel lined plate.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

This is what happens when you let a man in the kitchen...he will roll a cookie dough ball into the size of his fist. I was surprised that it turned out so well! He said that it was the best cookie he had ever had!

These are truly the best homemade cookies I have ever had! While eating them I was in shock and kept saying, "I can't believe that I made these!" Thank you Chelley for sharing this wonderful recipe!

2 cups plus 2 tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
12 Tbsp (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled until warm
1 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1- 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

1. Adjust the oven racks to the upper- and lower-middle positions and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or spray them with nonstick cooking spray. ( I used my Pampered Chef Pizza Stone and it worked great!)

2. Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in medium bowl, set aside.

3. Either by hand or with an electric mixer, mix the butter and sugars until thoroughly blended. Beat in the egg, yolk, and vanilla until combined. Add the dry ingredients and beat at low speed just until combined.

4. Roll a scant 1/4 cup of the dough into a ball. Hold the dough with the fingertips of both hands and pull into 2 equal halves. Rotate the halves 90 degrees and, with jagged surfaces facing up, join the halves together at their base, again forming a single ball, being careful not to smooth the dough's uneven surface. Place the formed dough balls on the prepared baking sheets, jagged surface up, spacing them 2 1/2 inches apart.
(Or roll the dough into small balls and spread a part on cookie sheet. This is what I did because I'm lazy.)

5. Bake until the cookies are light golden brown and the outer edges start to harden yet the centers are still soft and puffy, 15-18 minutes, rotating the baking sheets front to back and top to bottom halfway through the baking time. Cool the cookies on the sheets. Remove the cooled cookies from the baking sheets with a side metal spatula.
- taken from the Brown-eyed Baker and Baking Illustrated, pg. 434

Taco Chili

This is my favorite chili. I could literally eat it for lunch and dinner every day!

1 lb. ground beef
1 small can tomato sauce
2 cans pinto beans
1 pkg. Taco seasoning
2 cans Ro-Tel tomatoes (mild to spicy, according to taste)
Salt and pepper to taste

Cook beef, salt and pepper together. Drain. Put in crock pot. Add remaining ingredients and stir well. Simmer for 1 hour or all day in crock pot on low. Serve over Fritos and top with shredded cheese.
Note: For traditional chili substitute red kidney beans for pintos and chili seasoning for taco seaso ning.
-compliments of my mom

Blueberry Crunch

This is delicious! A neat thing about it is that it can be served as a side dish or as dessert topped with ice cream.

1 16 oz. can crushed pineapple
3 C. blueberries- fresh or frozen
1/2 c. sugar- sprinkle over blueberries
1 pkg. yellow cake mix- sprinkle over everything in pan
1 stick butter or margarine- pour over cake mix
1 C. chopped pecans- sprinkle over cake mix
Butter 9 by 13" baking dish. layer ingredients as listed and DON'T STIR. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.
-compliments of my mom and grandmother

Heath Bar Cake

There are no words to describe just how good this cake is. It is so rich. The longer it sits in the refridgerator, the more time the cake has to absorb the caramel mixture and the better it is! It is great made ahead.

1 box German Chocolate cake mix
1 jar caramel topping
1 can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed milk
7 Heath Bars
1 tub Cool Whip

Bake cake according to directions on box. While baking, mix Eagle's Brand and caramel topping. While still hot, poke holes in cake and pour caramel mixture over. Cool. Spread Cool Whip evenly over cake. Crush Heath Bars and sprinkle over Cool Whip. Best when served cold.
-compliments of my mom

Easy Butterfinger Pie

7 Butterfinger candy bars (regular size)
1 large tub Cool Whip
2 graham cracker pie crusts

Crunch Butterfingers into Cool Whip tub. Stir together. Pour mixture into pie crusts and freeze until hardened. Drizzle with chocolate syrup if desired.
-compliments of my mom

Lemon Velvet Chicken

1 Tbsp. flour
1 t. seasoned salt
2 or 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 Tbsp. butter
1 jar Alfredo sauce (I used Bertolli)
juice of 1 lemon

Mix flour and salt. Cover chicken with the mixture. Melt butter in hot pan, add chicken and cook for 5-10 minutes. Squeeze lemon over, add sauce, put on low and simmer for 10-20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Serve over fettucini.
- compliments of Whitney Akin

French Dip Sandwich

2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
2 cans beef consomme or beef broth
1 1/2 pounds deli sliced roast beef
Grill seasoning blend for steak
4 sub buns

In a large, shallow skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add flour to butter and cook a minute longer. Whisk in consomme in a slow stream. Bring sauce to a bubble and allow to simmer over low heat until ready to serve sandwiches.
Pile meat loosely across a cutting board. Season meat with grill seasoning With a pair of kitchen tongs, dip meat into loose au jus sauce and pile into rolls. Put remaining sauce into cups for dipping.
- adapted from Rachael Ray

Upside Down Pizza

1 lb. ground beef
1 8oz. container Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
1 jar spaghetti sauce
1 8oz. carton sour cream
Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

Brown and drain meat. Return to skillet and add spaghetti sauce. Stir and heat through. Pour meat mixture into lightly greased 9 by 13 casserole dish. Spread sour cream evenly over meat mixture and sprinkle cheese evenly over sour cream. Unroll crezcent rolls and lay over cheese. Bake, uncovered at 350 for 20 minutes.
-compliments of my mom

Fun Foods For Kids

S'Mores on a Stick
1 can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk- divided
1 1/2 cups milk chocolate mini chips- divided
1 cup mini marshmallows
11 whole graham crackers, halved crosswise
Toppings: chopped peanuts, mini M&M's , sprinkles
11 popscicle sticks

Microwave half of Eagle Brand in microwave-safe bowl at HIGH for 1 1 /2 minutes. Stir in 1 cip chocolate chips until smooth; stir in marshmallows.

Spread evenly by heaping tablespoonfuls onto 11 graham cracker halves. Top with remaining graham cracker halves; place on waxed paper.

Microwave remaing Eagle Brand for 1 1/2 minutes; stir in remaining 1/2 cup chocolate chips, stirring until smooth. Drizzle mixture over cookies and sprinkle with desired toppings.

Let stand for 2 hours; insert a popscicle stick in center of each cookie.
- adapted from Eagle Brand Holiday Cookbook

Cookie Pizza
1 roll refriderated sugar cookie dough
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 cups M&M's
2 cups mini marshmallows
1/2 cup peanuts

Preheat oven to 375. Press cookie dough into 2 ungreased 12-inch pizza pans. Bake 10 miutes or until golden.

In Medium sauce-pan, melt chips with Eagle brand. Spread over crusts. Sprinkle with milk chocolate candies, marshmallows and peanuts.

Bake 4 minutes or until marshmallows are lightly toasted. Cool. Cut into wedges.
- adapted from Eagle Brand Holiday Cookbook