Saturday, July 30, 2016

English Muffins

I put off making my own English muffins thinking it was going to be a time consuming recipe.  It wasn’t.  They were surprising easy to make and taste better than what you get in the store.  I’m embarrassed to say how long I’ve had the rings – let’s just say a few Presidents have been in office.  I do wish I would have bought an additional set so I could have baked all 8 at one time.

English Muffins

1 package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
1/2 cup milk, scalded
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
4 cups flour, divided
3 tbsp butter, softened

Add the yeast to the warm water and allow to sit for 10 minutes.  In the meantime, combine 2 cups of flour, sugar and salt in your mixer bowl.  Add in the yeast mixture and milk and beat using the dough hook until everything is incorporated.  Cover the bowl and leave in a warm place for 1 1/2 hours to rise.  After that time, beat in the softened butter and remaining 2 cups of flour.  Grease the muffins rings and place on a greased or parchment lined baking sheet.  Fill the rings one half full and allow to rise until doubled.  Bake at 425° for 20-25 minutes.  

Makes 8 muffins.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Blueberry BBQ Sauce

Sometimes you just want to try something new and I had some beautiful pork chops that I thought needed a new bbq sauce.  I didn’t want to add it on while cooking since blueberries tend to color the meat and a dark gray color.  It’s not very appetizing.  I tried this once with a pomegranate molasses and chicken. 

Blueberry BBQ Sauce
1 pint fresh blueberries
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup onion, minced
¼ cup honey
½ cup ketchup
1 tsp ginger
3 T raspberry wine vinegar

Place all the ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer, stirring frequently until  sauce thickens.  You can mash the berries and leave it a thicker consistency (which I did) or allow to cool and puree in a blender.  Refrigerate after completely cooled.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Honey Lemon Chicken

A perfect chicken for hot summer days.  The refreshing taste of lemon in a light sauce that compliments green beans or asparagus that you can serve with the chicken breasts.

Honey Lemon Chicken

2 - 4 chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness
1 clove garlic, smashed
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste


1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup chicken stock
2 tbsp honey
1/2 tsp oregano
Salt and pepper to taste

To thicken the sauce - mix together 1/4 cup water and 2 tbsp flour and stir in the mixture above when it's simmering

In a large frying pan, heat olive oil with garlic clove in it.  Remove the garlic clove before it burns, you only want to use it for the flavor.  Season both sides of the chicken breasts and place in the hot pan.  Brown on both sides.  Remove from pan and place on a serving dish with lemon slices.  Serve with lemon sauce.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Dr Pepper Meatballs

Slightly spicy and sweet, these meatballs are easy to make on the stove top or in a crock pot.

Dr Pepper Meatballs

Meatballs -

1# ground beef
1/2# ground pork
1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
1 large egg
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Roll into balls (or use a scoop) and bake on a non-stick aluminum foil lined pan for 20 minutes at 350°.  In a dutch oven or crock pot, combine the following -

1 - 12 oz can or bottle of Dr Pepper
1 cup chili sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Add meatballs and cook over medium heat until the sauce cooks down.  Serve over rice.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Grilled Hawaiian Chicken Tenders

It only takes minutes to grill these spicy chicken tenders.  I marinaded them for a half hour before grilling in this sweet and savory sauce ~

Grilled Hawaiian Chicken Tenders

1# chicken tenders
1/4 cup chili sauce
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp pineapple juice
1/8 tsp ground red chili flakes

Put all the ingredients in a gallon zippered plastic bag and make sure everything is mixed together well.  Place in the refrigerator for a half hour while your grill (if charcoal) is getting hot.  Grill 3-5 minutes on each side.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Raspberry Wine Spritzers

This is my new favorite summertime drink.  It's refreshing with hints of raspberry and lemon.  I found this wine at a local winery.  

Raspberry Wine Spritzers

4 oz raspberry wine
2 oz Perrier
1 oz Sprite

Pour over ice and serve with fresh raspberries and lemon slices.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Double Chocolate Brownie Bites

This is a perfect bite-size dessert for summer picnics and reunions.  The brownies have mini chocolate chips baked into them and they are topped with a light whipped cream topping.

Double Chocolate Brownie Bites

1/2 cup butter, melted
1 cup dark chocolate chips
2 tsp vanilla
3 large eggs
3 tbsp cocoa
3/4  cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking power
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Melt the butter and dark chocolate chips in a large saucepan over medium low heat stirring frequently.  When melted and smooth, add in the vanilla and eggs and beat until smooth.  Add in the dry ingredients and stir until completely incorporated.  Stir in the mini chocolate chips.  Use a small cookie scoop and fill greased mini cupcake pans.  Bake for 10 minutes at 350°.  Allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing carefully from the pans and place on a wire rack.  


1/3 cup whipping cream
1/3 cup Mascarpone cheese
3/4 cup powdered sugar

Whip cream until stiff peaks form.  Add in Mascarpone and powdered sugar and beat for another minute.

Makes 36.  

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Marinaded Steak Skewers

Are you looking for an easy, no-mess meal this holiday weekend?  These steak skewers are perfect for the grill and you only need to clean up the skewers and the knife you used.

Marinaded Steak Skewers

3/4# steak (I used filet mignon so it was extra tender)
8 oz baby Bella mushrooms
2# petite Klondike potatoes
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (I used one that was pear infused)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp oregano

Boil potatoes until fork tender (about 12 minutes), drain and cool.  Pour the balsamic vinegar and olive oil into a gallon size sealable plastic bag.  Add in the garlic and spices.  Cut steak into 1" cubes and add them and the cleaned mushrooms into the plastic bag.  Shake so all the spices are evenly distributed.  Put in the refrigerator for 2-4 hours.  I cut the potatoes in half but you can use whole ones if preferred.  Thread the steak, mushrooms and potatoes on skewers.  Season with salt and pepper.  Place on a hot grill and cook for 8 minutes before carefully flipping and cooking for an additional 8 minutes on the 2nd side.   

Makes 4 skewers.