Tuesday, April 26, 2011

#83 Chipotle Tomatillo Salsa

This is a recipe from my April cooking class with T. Pechey. Fresh salsas are so tasty and healthy to boot.
  • ½ to 1 chipotle chili
  • 1 lb tomatillos
  • ½ red onion
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • cup cilanro or parsely, chopped - do not use stems
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 bag tortilla chips
1. Place the lime juice, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to dissolve sugar.
2. Finely mince 1/2 of the chipotle and keep mincing until it's a paste-like consistency. Add the minced chipotle and any liquid to the lime juice mixture. Stir well to incorporate.
3. Remove and discard the husks from the tomatillos. Rinse the tomatillos under running water to remove the stickiness. Chop the tomatillos into 1/4 inch pieces and add to the bowl.
4. Dice the red onion into 1/4 inch pieces and add to the bowl.
5. Cut the yellow bell in half and remove and discard the membrane and seeds. Chop the bell pepper into 1/4 inch pieces and add t
o the bowl.
6. Add the parsley and oregano. Stir the entire mixture really well. Taste a little of the mixture. If you feel that it needs more heat, then finely mince the other half of the chipotle.
7. Serve with tortilla chips.

I couldn't find tomatillos the last time I made this recipe so I used roma tomatoes. I seeded three roma tomatoes and then chopped them up.

Lime flavoured tortilla chips are my favourite with this salsa.

Monday, April 25, 2011

#82 Banana Pudding Squares

I haven't tried this recipe yet but I plan to. I have a weakness for bananas :)

This recipe come from Kraft Canada. It can be viewed along with a picture at http://www.kraftcanada.com/en/recipes/banana-pudding-squares-94540.aspx?cm_mmc=eml-_-rbecaen-_-20110413-_-1160

  • 25 Nilla Vanilla Wafers, finely crushed (about 1 cup)
  • 3 Tbsp. non-hydrogenated margarine, melted
  • 1 pkg. (250 g) Philadelphia Light Brick Cream Cheese Spread, softened
  • ½ cup icing sugar
  • 3 cups thawed Cool Whip Light Whipped Topping, divided
  • 3 bananas
  • 2 pkg. (4-serving size each) Jell-O Vanilla Fat Free Instant Pudding
  • 3 cups cold skim milk
  • ½ square Baker's Semi-Sweet Chocolate, grated
1. Combine wafer crumbs and margarine; press onto bottom of 13x9-inch dish. Refrigerate until ready to use.

2. Mix cream cheese spread and sugar in medium bowl until blended. Stir in 1-1/2 cups Cool Whip; spread carefully over crust. Cut bananas crosswise in half, then cut each piece lengthwise in half. Arrange over cream cheese mixture.

3. Beat pudding mixes and milk with whisk 2 min.; pour over bananas. Cover with remaining Cool Whip; sprinkle with chocolate. Refrigerate 3 hours.

How to Easily Remove Dessert from Dish: Line dish with foil before using, with ends of foil extending over sides of dish. Prepare recipe and refrigerate as directed. Use foil handles to remove dessert from dish before cutting into squares to serve.

#81 Rhubarb Dump Cake

This recipe comes from Kraft Canada. It can be viewed along with a picture at http://www.kraftcanada.com/en/recipes/rhubarb-dump-cake-122032.aspx. I hope to try this soon with some of my grandma's frozen rhubarb.
  • 1 lb. (450 g) fresh rhubarb, chopped (about 4 cups)
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 pkg. (85 g) Jell-O Strawberry Jelly Powder
  • 1 pkg. (2-layer size) white cake mix
  • 1 cup water
  • cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup thawed Cool Whip Whipped Topping
1. Heat oven to 350ºF.

2. Place rhubarb in 13x9-inch baking dish sprayed with cooking spray; sprinkle with sugar and dry jelly powder.

3. Stir cake mix, water and butter with fork just until cake mix is moistened. (Do not overmix.) Pour over rhubarb; spread to completely cover rhubarb.

4. Bake 45 min. or until golden brown. Serve warm topped with Cool Whip.

Cake is also excellent served cold. Cake can be baked ahead of time. Cool completely, then refrigerate until ready to serve.

#81 Bacon & Maple Scalloped Potatoes

I haven't tried this recipe yet. To date my signature scalloped potato recipe is Silk Purse Potatoes from Taste of Home. However I do think that this recipe has promise. According to my husband, all recipes with bacon are winners. This recipe along with a picture can be found on the Kraft Canada website at http://www.kraftcanada.com/en/recipes/bacon-maple-scalloped-potatoes-123145.aspx
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 125 g (1/2 of 250-g pkg.) Philadelphia Brick Cream Cheese, cubed
  • 1 can (10 fl oz/284 mL) 25%-less-sodium chicken broth
  • ½ cup milk
  • ¼ cup Oscar Mayer Real Bacon Recipe Pieces
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 2 lb. (900 g) Yukon gold potatoes (about 6), cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 cup Kraft Double Cheddar Shredded Cheese
1. Heat oven to 400°F.

2. Cook onions in a large skillet sprayed with cooking spray on medium-high heat 3 to 5 min. or until crisp-tender, stirring frequently. Remove onions from skillet.

3. Add cream cheese, broth and milk to skillet; cook and stir on medium-low heat 5 min. or until cream cheese is melted and mixture is well blended. Remove from heat; stir in bacon and syrup.

4. Place half the potatoes in 13x9-inch baking dish sprayed with cooking spray; cover with layers of onions and shredded cheese. Top with remaining potatoes and cream cheese sauce; cover.

5. Bake 1 hour 5 min. or until potatoes are tender and top is golden brown, uncovering after 50 min.

#80 Perogies with Sour Cream and Onion Sauce

This recipe was developed by my grandmother. It is one of our favourite ways to eat perogies.
  • 24 perogies, cook as directed
  • ½ cup butter
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1 cup sour cream
1. Cook perogies as directed on package. Drain and set aside.
2. While perogies are cooking, melt the butter in a fry pan. Add chopped green onions and heat the onions through.
3. Remove the fry pan from heat and add sour cream. Stir until mixed. You may want to put on low heat to help mix until smooth but do not cook or sour cream will curdle or separate.
4. Pour over cooked perogies and serve.

Depending on number of perogies, make more or less sauce.

#79 Glaze for Ham

So the first time I decided to host my in-laws for Easter dinner, I decided to make a ham. A few days before the feast I made my way to my neighbourhood grocery store to select my ham. As a first time ham cooker, I was surprised to find that purchasing a ham is easier said than done. When looking around the grocery store meat section I found there were many different types and sizes of ham. Sensing my distress one of the staff in the meat department approached me to see if I needed any help. I told her that I needed a ham to feed about 14 people and that I was cooking for my in-laws so I wanted to do a good job. The meat clerk immediately instructed me to follow her. She picked out a ham for me (I think it was a bone-in shank but it may have been a butt) and she told me to get a piece of paper and pen out of my purse. She instructed me to put the ham in a roaster, cut side down and pour a beer over it. She then gave me the oven temperature and the cooking time as well as this recipe glaze for the last 1/2 hour to hour of cooking. As far as I could tell, the ham was a hit and I have used this glaze on hams ever since!
  • cup honey
  • cup rye whiskey
  • cup brown sugar
1. Combine the honey, whiskey, and brown sugar in a small pot. Heat over low heat on the stove until the brown sugar is dissolved and the mixture is well blended.
2. Brush over ham every 10 to 15 minutes in the last 1/2 hour to hour of cooking time for the ham.

If you want more or less glaze, just mix equal parts of the honey, whiskey, and brown sugar.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

#78 Coconut Cream Dessert

This recipe is from Taste of Home (February/March 2005, p49). It can be found online at http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/Coconut-Cream-Dessert-2.
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ cup cold butter, cubed
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 carton (12 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed, divided
  • 4 cups cold 2% milk
  • 1-½ teaspoons coconut extract
  • 3 packages (3.4 ounces each) instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 2 cups flaked coconut, divided
1. In a small bowl, combine flour and sugar; cut in butter until crumbly. Stir in the pecans. Press into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Bake at 325° for 20-25 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
2. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and confectioners' sugar until smooth; fold in 1 cup whipped topping. Spread over the crust.
3. In another large bowl, whisk the milk, extract and pudding mixes for 2 minutes; let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Fold in 1-1/2 cups coconut. Spread over cream cheese mixture.
4. Top with remaining whipped topping. Toast remaining coconut; sprinkle over top.
5. Refrigerate overnight.
(Serves 15)

I noticed you can not buy coconut cream instance pudding in the stories where I live. But my aunt and grandma suggested purchasing vanilla instant pudding and adding coconut flavouring or prepare it with coconut milk.

#77 Toffee Bars

Tofee and chocolate? What else needs to be said.
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 can Eagle Brand milk
  • graham wafer crackers
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
1. Combine all the ingredients and bring to a boil. Stir constantly so the mixture will not burn. Continue to stir constantly and let boil for five minutes.
2. Pour over whole graham wafers that have been laid into a 9 x 13 pan.
3. Sprinkle chocolate chips over while the toffee layer is hot. Swirl with a pointed knife.
4. Cool and then cut into squares.

#76 Rice Krispie Peanut Butter Squares

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup corn syrup or honey
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 7 cups Rice Krispies
  • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1. In a large saucepan melt brown sugar and syrup on mid heat until sugar dissolves and the mixture starts to boil.
2. Stir in peanut butter and mix well.
3. Add the Rice Krispies and stir until coated.
4. Press into a 9x13 pan. Spread with melted chocolate chips.
5. Chill an cut into squares.

#75 Pumpkin Cake Slice

This is a dessert that a colleague of mine brought to a staff potluck one year. It was so good I just had to ask for the recipe. This would be a good alternative to pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving.
  • CRUST:
  • 1 yellow or white cake mix
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup butter
  • 3 cups cooked pumpkin
  • 2 ½ tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • cup milk
  • 1 cup reserved cake mix
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
1. CRUST: Mix together all the crust ingredients. Reserve 1 cup for topping. Press the rest into a greased 9x13 pan.
2. FILLING: Combine all the filling ingredients. Pour onto the crust.
3. TOPPING: Combine the topping ingredients and drop by teaspoons over the filling.
4. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Bake until a knife instered into the center comes out clean.
5. Enjoy and serve with whipped cream.

#74 Lil's Ginger Snap Cookies

This is another cookie recipe my mom passed on to me that a absolutely love. Gingersnap cookies are truly the best!

  • ¾ cup oil
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • 2 cups flour
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 1 tsp ginger
1. Cream the oil and white sugar.
2. Add the egg and molasses and beat well.
3. Add the remaining ingredients and combine until mixture resembles dough.
4. Chill the dough for 1 hour and then roll the dough into balls.
5. Roll each ball in white sugar and put on a greased cookie sheet. Before baking press down each dough ball with a fork.
6. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in a 370 degree oven.

#73 Chocolate or Smartie Cookies

This is my mom's cookie recipe. It is simple and delicious. The cookies are always moist and tasty.
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 ¼ cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 ½ cups chocolate chips or Smarties
1. Cream the butter or margarine, sugars, and vanilla.
2. Whisk eggs and then add to the mixture and stir well.
3. Add flour, baking soda, and salt to the mixture and mix well until mixture looks like dough.
4. Stir in chocolate chips.
5. Form the cookie dough into balls and drop onto greased cookies sheets.
6. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 10 to 12 minutes.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

#72 Vegetable Marinade Salad

My mom and I adapted this salad from Jean Pare'sVegetable Marinade in Company's Coming: Salads. We added olives and miniature corn on the cobs. Not only is this salad colourful and delicious, but it keeps for several days after it is served.
  • 1 small cauliflower
  • 3 cups broccoli, flower ends
  • 2 cups cherry tomatores
  • 2 cups celery, cut into sticks or chopped coarsely
  • 3 carrots, cut into sticks or chopped coursely
  • 2 cans whole mushrooms, drained
  • 1 green pepper , chopped coarsely
  • ¾ cup sliced olives, drained
  • 1 can mini corn cobs, drained
  • 1 ¼ cups Italian dressing
1. Divide the cauliflower into bite sized pieces. Do the same with the broccoli. Put into a large bowl with a tight fitting cover.
2. Add the tomatoes, whole along with the rest of the vegetables.
3. Pour Italian dressing over vegetables. Put the cover on the bowl and shake to distribute dressing evenly.
4. Chill the salad overnight turning container occasionally. Serve the next day.

This makes a large salad.

#71 Asparagus Bow-tie Pasta

I made this recipe to celebrate my husband's promotion. My favourite part of this recipe was the sun dried tomatoes. I am officially in love with this ingredient!

This recipe comes from Kraft Canada's What's Cooking magazine on page 27 but it can also be found online at http://www.kraftcanada.com/en/recipes/asparagus-bow-tie-pasta-122042.aspx.
  • 2 cups farfalle (bow-tie pasta), uncooked
  • 1 lb. (450 g) fresh asparagus spears, trimmed, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • ½ cup halved orange pepper strips
  • ¼ cup julienne-cut oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, undrained
  • ½ cup 25%-less-sodium chicken broth
  • 50 g (1/5 of 250-g pkg.) Philadelphia Brick Cream Cheese, cubed
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 cup Kraft 4 Cheese Italiano Shredded Cheese make it
1. Cook pasta in large saucepan as directed on package, omitting salt and adding asparagus to boiling water for the last 2 min. Drain.

2. Meanwhile, cook peppers and tomatoes in large skillet on medium-high heat 2 to 3 min. or until crisp-tender, stirring frequently.

3. Add pasta mixture, broth, cream cheese and oregano to skillet; mix well. Cook and stir 5 min. or until sauce is slightly thickened. Top with shredded cheese; cook 2 to 3 min. or until cheese begins to melt.
(Serves 4)

I bought sun dried tomatoes at a bulk food store. When I went to cut them for this recipe, they were hard as rock. I soaked them for a few minutes in hot water and oil olive which softened them right up.

Add 1-1/2 cups cooked cleaned shrimp or chopped cooked chicken to skillet with the cooked pasta.

Substitute 1 tsp. dried oregano leaves for the fresh oregano. Prepare using yellow pepper strips. Substitute rotini pasta for the bow tie.

Monday, April 4, 2011

#70 Toasted Coconut Lemon Cream Pudding

The pudding part of this recipe comes from my late winter-early spring adult cooking class with T. Pechey.
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup corstarch
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 cups 3% milk, Do not use skim
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 2 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ cup shredded coconut, divided
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • 1 tbsp sugar
1. In a small skillet, toast 1/4 cup f the coconut over medium high heat, stirring and tossing until fragrant and golden in color. Do not burn! Set aside.
2. Combine the sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a 3 or 4 quart saucepan. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and milk until blended. Gradually stir milk mixture into sugar mixture. Stir in lemon zest and remaining 1/4 cup of coconut.
3. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly until mixture just comes to a boil. It will take a long time!
4. Reduce heat but maintain a simmer. Stir constantly for approximately three minutes until thickened. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice and vanilla. Stir and allow to cool. Refrigerate until serving.
5. In the meantime, prepare graham cracker crumble by mixing graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, and sugar.

6. Take small parfait dishes and layer graham cracker crumbs and pudding. You will need to give the pudding a good stir before dishing. Top the parfaits with toasted coconut.

DANGER: This pudding is REALLY rich. When making parfaits, make small ones. The parfaits featured in the picture were too large...they almost did my husband and I in!

The last time I made this I also made the Quick Cherry Cheesecake recipe. I took some of the cream cheese mixture from the Quick Cherry Cheesecake and layered in with the pudding, graham cracker crumble, and coconut.

#69 Spicy Lasagna

 Each year I have my husband request what he would like for his birthday dinner party. One year he requested lasagna. My mom and I made The Best Lasagna recipe and decided to try this one as well. We made a huge mess of the kitchen making the lasagnas and we filled the house with smoke when one of the lasagna's boiled over the pan in the oven (Be sure to put a baking sheet under the baking dish!). However, in the end the meal was fantastic and surprisingly this lasagna ended up being the favourite. This recipe comes from G. and T. Ferguson - Star City Centennial Cookbook.
  • 9 to 12 lasagna noodles, cook as directed on box
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 large jar salsa, medium or mild
  • 1 green pepper , chopped
  • 2 handfuls fresh mushrooms
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1 container feta cheese, grate or crumble as desired
  • 1 small pkg. fresh spinach
  • 1 8 oz can spicy tomatoes
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
1. Brown ground turkey.
2. Add garlic and a dash of salt and pepper. Add onion, green pepper, and mushrooms. Cook 5 minutes or until onions are transparent.
3. Add 2/3 jar of salsa and can of spicy tomatoes. Mix well. This will compromise the meaty mix layer.
4. Layer accordingly in a 9x13 inch baking dish: noodles, meaty mix, spinach, feta cheese, noodles, meaty mix, spinach, feta cheese, noodles, salsa, and top with mozzarella and feta cheese.
5. Bake at 350 degree for 30 to 40 minutes.

#68 Olive Garlic Bread

My uncle made this recipe when I visited him this summer. It was so good that I made it when I returned home. However for the oregano and marjoram I ended up using fresh herbs from my garden. They sure added extra flavour! Even those who usually turn their nose at the sight of olives enjoyed the loaf but you can always just eliminate the olives all together.
  • 1 loaf french bread
  • 1 cup butter or margarine
  • 4 green onions, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp marjoram leaves
  • ½ tsp oregano
  • 12 to 15 sliced black olives, finely chopped
  • grated parmesan cheese, to sprinkle on top
  • paprika, a sprinkle to garnish
1. Mix spices in butter.
2. Add green onions and olives.
3. Spread on loaf and then top with parmesan cheese and paprika.
4. Broil 10 to 15 minutes till golden brown.