Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Teriyaki Pork Chops

Lots of flavor and tenderness are in these marinaded pork chops.  I marinaded them overnight but it would also work to put it together in the morning so they are ready for after work during the week.

Teriyaki Pork Chops

2-3 pork chops 
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp soy sauce

Place all the ingredients in a quart size plastic bag that can seal.  Place in refrigerator overnight or for 4-8 hours.  Grill, fry or bake pork chops.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Caramel Apple Pie

The last burst of summer hit yesterday along with temperatures that were edging up towards 90°.  It was cooler this morning so a much better time to bake and I had gotten some beautiful apples.  Is anything better than caramel apples?  Mine are in the form of a pie this time.

Caramel Apple Pie

1 deep dish pie crust, baked per package directions
4 apples (mine were large so if smaller 5 or 6)
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cornstarch
1/4 cup cold water


1/2 cup oats
1/2 cup flour
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
3 tbsp cold butter

Peel, core and slice the apples into even slices into a large saucepan.  Add in lemon juice, brown sugar and cinnamon and cook un til soft.  Stir in cornstarch that was mixed in the cold water to thicken the juices.  Pour into the baked pie crust.  In a small bowl, combine the streusel ingredients and place on top of apples.  Bake for 30 minutes at 350°.  Cool on a rack.  When cool top with 1/2 cup of caramel ice cream topping.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Double Peanut Butter Cookies

There was a lot of peanut butter in the house for some unknown reason so I wanted to find a good home for at least some of it.  And what could be better than in a cookie?  I happened to have an open bag of peanut butter chips on hand too, along with some Rice Krispies for a little crunch factor.

Double Peanut Butter Cookies

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup natural peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda 
1 cup Rice Krispies
3/4 cup peanut butter chips

Cream together butter and sugars.  Mix in peanut butter and vanilla.  Add in flour, salt and baking soda.  Fold in the cereal and peanut butter chips.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a couple hours.  Bake for 8-9 minutes at 350°.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Mexican Stromboli

I was watching tv the other day and saw a stromboli with pepperoni and mozzarella oozing out and it made me realize that it's been years since I made one.  I happened to have more ground beef than pepperoni on hand (plus everything else that screams Mexican food) so I decided to make this great weeknight meal or football watching treat for a group.  Plus I had my own taco seasoning and refried beans on hand (recipes below).

Mexican Stromboli

1 can pizza crust dough
1 # extra lean ground beef
4 tbsp taco seasoning 
2 tbsp green chilies
6 oz Mexican shredded cheese
1 cup refried beans

Cook ground beef.  Drain off any excess grease.  Add in 1/4 cup water, taco seasoning and green chilies.  While the ground beef is cooking, spread out pizza dough and let it come to room temperature.  Spread out the refried beans evenly over the dough.  Top with the ground beef mixture and then with the cheese.  Carefully roll up the dough and place on a greased baking sheet.  Heat oven to 370°.  When heated, bake the stromboli for 20 minutes.  You may think that it's ready to go at around 15 minutes but the inside needs the additional time to finish cooking.  Let cool 5 minutes before slicing.  Serve with your favorites.  I used sour cream and salsa.

Taco Seasoning

I usually double this recipe

1 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1 1/4 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp parsley
1/4 tsp  oregano
1 tsp pepper, freshly ground
1/2 tsp salt

Place in a sealable plastic bag or container that's airtight and mix well.

Crockpot Refried Beans ~

2 cups pinto beans
1/2 cup onion, peeled and chopped
2 dried chile chipotle
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tbsp cumin
1 cup V8 Juice
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Rinse and clean pinto beans and soak overnight in 6 cups of water.  Put in crockpot on high with onions, garlic and chile chipotle on high.  Cook for 8 hours occasionally stirring and adding liquid as needed (the V8 juice and water).

When the beans are soft, mash and add cumin, salt and freshly ground pepper.  Freeze in 1 cup containers for future use.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Beer Cheese Soup

I don't believe you could live in this area of the country and never had beer cheese soup or at least seen it on a menu at many restaurants.  I would always have it when visiting a restaurant that was in the Fargo mall served with croutons.   I made some pumpernickle croutons out of the bread I made yesterday.

Beer Cheese Soup

2 tbsp butter
2 carrots, sliced thin (or you can dice them)
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup onions, minced
2 tbsp flour
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup beer
1 dash Worcestershire sauce
1 dash hot sauce
8 oz cheddar, shredded
4 oz swiss cheese

Melt the butter in the bottom of a dutch oven or very large saucepan.  Add in carrots, onions and garlic and cook until tender.  Stir flour into the vegetables when they have softened.  Pour in chicken stock, milk and beer.  Add the dashes of Worcestershire and hot sauces.  Heat completely but do not bring to a boil.  Stir in the cheeses.  Keep stirring until completely melted.  Serve hot.   

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Pumpernickel Bread

One of my favorite breads is pumpernickel.  I finally bought some rye flour and decided to try my hand at it and it turned out fantastic!  I could have made two separate loaves but I've always wanted to try baking bread in my dutch oven.  It was almost overflowing but that's ok.  I plan to freeze some for future stuffing and making some croutons from it.  

Pumpernickel Bread

4 cups bread flour
1 cup rye flour
2 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp sugar
1 pkg (2 1/4 tsp) active dry yeast
2 tbsp dark cocoa
1 3/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup molasses
1 tbsp canola oil

Whisk together the dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Add in warm water, molasses and canola oil.  Stir with a wooden spoon until completely mixed.  Turn out on a floured board and knead for 5 minutes.  Put dough in the dutch oven after you've added some canola oil or place back in your mixing bowl that has been oiled.  Turn dough over so all sides are oiled and cover with a clean towl.  Let rest until dough has doubled in size (approximately an hour).  If using two pans, remove from bowl and cut in half and place in greased bread pans.  Preheat oven to 350°.  When the oven is ready, place dutch oven or pans in and bake for 35 minutes.  Remove from oven and spread 1 tbsp softened butter on top.  Let cool in pan for 15 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.

Friday, September 19, 2014

ABC Quesadilla

What does the ABC stand for?  Apple, Bacon and Cheddar.  A fun and easy to make snack or sandwich for kids of all ages.  You do not need a quesadilla maker either, I made this in a regular frying pan so maybe it's time to create some more cupboard space and donate mine.  I did use a mandoline for extra thin slices.  I think I could have made 3-4 quesadillas with one good sized apple.

ABC Quesadilla

1 large apple, I used a Gala but any apple will work, cut in thin slices
1/3 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
2 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
2 flour tortillas (you can use whole wheat)

Place 1 flour tortilla at the bottom of a heated frying pan.  Sprinkle approximately 1/4 cup of the cheese on top.  Circle apple slices on the cheese completely covering the tortilla.  Sprinkle the bacon bits and remaining cheese on top and cover with the 2nd tortilla.  Cook until lightly browned and cheese hs melted.  Carefully turn over and lightly brown the 2nd side.  Remove from heat and plate.  Cut into 6 pieces.